Amazing Interrupt Handling!

Q. Where do you think will you find an amazingly crafted code that would give priority to a Screensaver over a Keyboard/Mouse interrupt? No Kidding. Think.

Ans. If you guessed it to be an Operating System designed by the Redmond Giant, you are stupid. It’s not something to be guessed.
I just posted to let you know that I experienced this amazing feature when a (stupid) piece of Java code (along with Winrtgen, Cain’s Rainbow table generator) resulted in 100% of System process usage.
Lucky me πŸ™

A program called "3~" (Om)

I was returning back to my room at around 6:30 in the morning after spending the whole night, as usual, in office. Suddenly this though struck me.
I always talk about codes and related stuff and ask people to map their algorithms to real life while coding, especially in OOP languages.
I asked myself, what would it be like to describe myself as a code, a script… a program.
So I (climbed two my cabin, which is on the second floor) and here is my honest attempt. πŸ™‚

Om, unlike other programs, wasn’t really planned. There were no plans usually made back then in the early eighties; at least not in India. He was an additional functionality (a small script back then) of two programs, M & R.

However, since M & R were pretty solid codes in themselves, Om inherited most of the good features and was pretty healthy (I mean robust πŸ˜€ ) even as a tiny script.
So far so good. But it could never rely on conventional ways of compilation and execution. It was a rebel. Some people call such programs as “malfunctioning programs” :). Programs that do not do what they are meant to do.

Time passed on.
It received formal education that helped him access various code repositories to incorporate other functionalities. It gathered data about various modes and environment of operation. It also learnt efficient memory and execution-time management.
However, these all came at the price of dependencies on various libraries, viz., friends, relatives, emotions, money, etc.

Microsoft has some strange reason for assuming that all human beings use IE and are on a windows box. This assumption makes most of their products, even the web applications, dependent on these assumptions.

Dependencies are bad.
Bad were they for Om as well…

It gradually got frustrated (a human emotion).
It got frustrated at lots of things… at almost everything.
It got frustrated on the formal way of code development, the conventional way of execution, the hypocritical nature of the IDEs that are supposed to facilitate development, and lot more.

There’s an unwritten law, which says that all rebels become an outlaw sooner or later.
So did Om.
Most of the libraries on which it was dependent had grown up to be pretty matured libraries and the outlaw was no more supported.
Dependencies are bad…

…but some codes die hard.
Since most of the libraries on which Om was dependent were under GPL, it simply incorporated the required code snippets instead of referencing the libraries. This has made it a pretty complex and buggy code… but hey that’s why the saying goes:
There is code in my bug” πŸ™‚

Vista!!! (3 Exclamations.) is here? (Why :-/)

I don’t intend to post any review of the vista.
There are some neatly written essays on the topics by experts, like this one.
I was going through the article and stumbled on this page, which has the picture given below.

Vista Malware

What happened was due merely due to fast glance and my mouse cursor covering a part of the word; the hardware appeared to me as malware, making it Is it time to upgrade your malware?

Now that’s wrong on my part to ridicule someone because of my own mistake… but honestly. Is there any difference?

UPDATE:
Very very honestly. I had read only the first two pages the security focus review before writing the above lines. However, the third page contains the following para:

So, one craplet pops up demanding to be enabled; you exit that, and a different one pops up telling you that you really ought not to have done that. Now, my definition of malware is pretty straightforward: malware is any code that causes my computer to behave in a way I don’t intend, or any code that prevents my computer from behaving in a way that I do intend. Thus the Vista Security Centre is, quite simply, malware.

Wohoooo!
I am a genius.

Samy: A hero or a villian!

First thing first. I hate these sites meant for so called “socializing”.
Sites like: Orkut, MySpace, etc. Ditto with games like SecondLife.
Heck Man.
Just get out of these places and get a life…. [Be more like Swen, the GBCD ;)]

Anyways. There is this guy who created a, so called, WORM for MySpace.
It was a beautifully written piece of code… all in javascript. What this worm did was, it added Samy as a hero in the profile of every person who visited Samy’s profile.
And that’s not all, it also added Samy as a hero to the visitors who visited ANY affected profile.
He gives a beautiful (and “for-dummies”) writeup:
Story in his own words
Technical details

It created a havoc. Lakhs of profiles were infected in a few hours. MySpace had to take down the site to “repair” it.
The code is so beautifully crafted that it made me smile.

Now, was this wrong?
To a certain extent, YES.

Was it a punishable crime?
mmm… Depends on the extent and type of punishment. [If my views matter… well it’s my blog, so it matters πŸ˜‰ ]

The recent news is that Samy has been sentenced for three years of probation and 90 hours of community service. He cannot have access to internet during this period. [Though I am not able to understand what it means. He’ll anyways be using ATM etc.]
However, this kind of “punishment” doesn’t make a sense to me.

If we really have to punish the “culprits”, why not punish MySpace too?
Why shouldn’t MySpace take the responsibility of the privacy of it’s users?
Why was MySpace stupid to allow DIV tags?
Why shouldn’t iexplorer and safari be sentenced for allowing javascript inside CSS?

These are questions that cannot be answered because the world belongs to the BIG-BAD-BOYS.
What this boy did not really harm anyone. He could have modified the code to steal private information, (the way your gmail book can be stolen).
Moreover, he published the code after MySpace had fixed the problem.
……. and yet he has been SENTENCED.

I am reminded of an incident that Lalit told me about.
There was this guy who informed the site administrator about some loophole in his site and was jailed.

“… but why?”
“Because you are not supposed to peek inside my house, even if the door is open.”
“… and what if I am one of those who have signed up to stay in your house? Isn’t my privacy your responsibility? Shouldn’t I be allowed to check the locks and doors?”
“No. I am a freaking BIG-BAD-BOY. You’ve no right to mess with me. If you even dare, be prepared to be jailed.”

Well…. That makes sense now.
So next time you find a loophole either sit silently or sell it.
That’s all I can conclude.

Zone-H Deafced by Saudi Hackers.

In an ironical/laughable/insightful event, http://zone-h.org was defaced today by Saudi Hackers. Irony because Zone-H maitains (probably the largest) archive of defaced site.
Below is the screenshot of the (defaced) homepage of zone-h.

zone-h_defaced.jpg

The words “your security got bypassed .. see more security next time” are clear enough to announce that security is not an feature or an event, it’s a process.By the way, I liked the music πŸ˜›

Google Bomb! [Update: Diffused]

Boom.
I mean Hi πŸ™‚

I am not talking about something new. The term was coined by Adam Mathes on April 6, 2001 in uber.nu.
talking about the topic, should I explain what Google Bomb is, or should i explain the consequences?
Ummmm.

Okay. Goto Google, type “misrable failure”, and click on “I am feeling Lucky”.
What we get is the President of America’s page :D.

The reason being the way Google’s algo works.
While rating the web pages, Google employes several… ummmm ways/methods (I could not get the right word :P).
Anyways. One of these ways is to rate the pages based on the number of links it has, and also the keyword that has been used to link it.
One of the reasons my blog appears [last time I checked it was 11th] for the name “bipin”, though there no “Bipin” on the blog. Some of my friends have links to my blog using my real name.

… and the most scary thing, it doesn’t take a lot of links.

Wish to DEFAME someone?
You’ve the way now πŸ˜‰

Update:
Google has started diffusing it’s bomb.
In a recent update Google inormed @ the official Google Webmaster’s blog informed that they have diifusing the bomb. [What the heck man? Were they waiting for my write-up πŸ˜‰ ]

Top Rating in Google :D

I was in one of my “Saddy-Saddy-For-No-Reason” moods.
And didn’t want to bother anyone so started playing with Google’s Webmaster Tools.

I used them for the first time so I had to go through the usual “add site”, “verify”… blah blah.
But after that I was surprised to see that my tech blog rates @ 1 for the search keyword COLUKABKI.
I verified it and was really amazed… status [:surprised:] & [:dead:]
It even features above www.colukabki.com :-O

Another surprise, which I am still not able to figure out is that my personal blog features @ 10 for my real name……… however, I do not have my name ANYWHERE on the blog. [May be it’s somewhere in the comments. Whatever….]

I know it’s not a BIG achievement…. but it’s just the beginning… πŸ˜›

Update: Looks like the “my-personal-blog-getting-on-top-10” has been a victim of “Google Bomb Diffusion”. I never intended to raise my blogs rating by any such activity. It’s probably because my friends linked my blog using my real name….
…and now when the so called Google Bomb is diffused, my site, one of genuine sites to get weightage is suffering.
It’s time Google stops worrying about it’s public image and starts working on things that makes me address it as “Google GOD

Grabbing Video from Youtube.

Update: This hack doesn’t work any more. I’ll post the latest pretty soon. Hopefully. πŸ™‚

I loved this performance by Tina & Hussain. It left me breathless, and wet-ted my eyes :D.

I wanted it s badly. Did a l’ill research, found a hack, and here I am, sharing [& open sourcing it πŸ˜‰ ].
You can find various sites and ‘n’ number of tools to grab your favorite video from Youtube.
There are definitely simpler ways, including a javascript. However, I liked this manual way of doing the job. It let’s me see where’s what… πŸ™‚

1. Goto the page containing the video.
2. View page source. [Ctrl+U in firefox]
3. Search [Ctrl+F] for “player2.swf?“. It’d be something like “/player2.swf?video_id=jksdjs….“.
4. Copy the part after “?“, i.e., “video_id=jksdjs….“.
5. Append it after “www.youtube.com/get_video.php?“. It’d look something like “www.youtube.com/get_video.php?video_id=jksdjs….“.
6. Paste your string in the address bar of your browser and hit enter.
7. Please note that the video that we download is an flv file [and needs “.flv” to be manually added.]
8. If you don’t have an flv player, get it from HERE.

I hope it helps you get what you want I am not sure as to how long it’d work as the YouTube guys do not like people to download the videos and keep changing the settings. [ I am still wondering why!!!]
If the above mentioned steps do not help, please leave comments.

Psst.: I am planning to write a script to do it automatically. However, I am not sure if I want to do it in Perl or Java. [Perhaps, I’ll code in perl and ask my students to do it in Java πŸ™‚ ]

Wiley’s Best Selling Comp Book ;)

winxpfordummies.jpg
I captured this “masterpiece” from Wiley’s site from this link a few moments ago. πŸ™‚
Look at the contrasting words:

“Windows XP”
“Dummies” &
“Best Selling”
>:)

…….And I thought that the number of geeks is on an increase.
Well, Microsoft proved me wrong.

I should have already guessed this from the amount of crap forwards I receive in my inbox….. right from the “forward and donate….” to “forward else die…” mails.

I again request the forward-ers to read this article on Colukabki before forwarding any mails.

Linux for Coding,
Windows for Gaming. πŸ™‚

Have Fun.

Apache-MySQLPHP Installation & Configuration Tutorial for Beginners :)

Note: This article still seems to attract a fair bit of traffic. Just wanted to let you guys know that this is a pretty old article. PHP development environment has come a long way since then. You may want to download and use any of the following packaged environments instead: WAMP or XAMPP on Windows, or MAMP on OS X

In case you have any other queries, feel free to drop a note in the comments. I’ll try to answer.


This article is a very β€œnarrow” tutorial aimed for complete beginners and dummies, who want to start off coding with AMP (Apache-MySQL-PHP) but do not want to read manual for installing and configuring them.
This write up is very specifically targeted and applies for Windows platform.

Note: To get the real and complete understanding, spend some time with the manuals. They are the best source of information.

Installing and Configuring PHP5 with Apache

    1. Select the most appropriate mirror for you from the following: http://www.apache.org/dyn/closer.cgi/httpd/binaries/win32/ (for Apache), and http://www.php.net/downloads.php for PHP.
    2. Download apache_1.3.x-win32-x86-no_src.exe and PHP 5.1.2 zip package (names PHP-5.x-win32).
        • DO NOT use Apache 2.x with PHP.

       

      • If you use PHP 4.x, make proper changes in the some of the steps given below.

Note:

  1. Install Apache by simply clicking on the exe file. The default path is C:\Program Files\Apache Group\Apache.
  2. Unzip the PHP file to C:\PHP.
  3. Add C:\PHP to system path.
  4. Backup and rename php.ini.dist to php.ini.
  5. Copy php5ts.dll and php.ini to %systemroot%.
  6. Copy php5apache.dll to C:\Program Files\Apache Group\Apache.
  7. Open cmd (command prompt) and run net stop apache (to obviously stop the server).
  8. Backup httpd.conf, located in C:\Program Files\Apache Group\Apache\conf, and then open it in an editor to add the following lines:
    • LoadModule php5_module php5apache.dll
    • AddType application/x-httpd-php .php
    • AddModule mod_php5.c [If you face any problems, remove this line and check again]
  9. Net start Apache.
  10. To check if all everything is in place, write the following code in a notepad and save it as β€œphpinfo.php” (with inverted quotes).

<?php
phpinfo();
?>

  1. Place the file in your DocumentRoot directory. The default path is C:/Program Files/Apache Group/Apache/htdocs.
  2. Start your Mozilla Firefox browser (it’s not mandatory, just a recommendation :P), and type http://localhost/phpinfo.php.
  3. If everything’s fine, we’ll see something like this:

 

phpinfo.jpg

Installing MySQL:

  1. We can find it in three shapes and sizes :D, The Complete Package, The Essentials Package and The Noinstall Archive. We’d go for the complete package named mysql-[version]-win32.
  2. The installation part is click next type.
  3. At the end of the installation, click to configure and choose the options as per your choice or as given below:
    • Detailed Configuration>Next
    • Developer Machine>Next
    • Multifunctional Database>Next
    • >Next
    • Manual Settings (choose 5)>Next
    • Enable TCP/IP (leave default port as 3306)>Next
    • Add to both, windows services and ssytem path>Next
    • Choose root password>Next
    • Execute.


Configuring MySQL & PHP:

  1. Open php.ini, located in %systemroot%, in and editor and uncomment the following line by removing the semicolon at the beginning of the line:
  2. extension=php_mysql.dll
  3. Copy php_mysql.dll and libmysql.dll from C:\PHP\ext to C:\PHP.
  4. To verify the configuration and administer MySQL, one may use phpmyadmin, found at http://www.phpmyadmin.net/home_page/index.php. However, do make sure not to publish it along with the site :P.
  5. That’s it. Happy Coding (. For anymore queries, either leave your comments or refer to the manuals.

"COLUKABKI – AOL – MSN – YAHOO – RED CROSS"….. aaah Comm’n Gimme a break.

It’s really interesting that even enginieering students, who are supposed to have a very ANALYTIC are least bothered in verifying anything before believing it…… and that too when they have access to GOOGLE.

This blog of mine is in response to the hundreds and thousands of mails that are forwarded so that somewhere, somebody’s LIFE COULD BE SAVED BY FORWARDING THE BLOODY MAIL.
AOL, Yahoo, Red Cross, MSN etc. etc .etc. donated certain amount of money FOR EACH TIME THE MAIL IS FORWARDED (generally 1 cent).
Isn’t that interesting???? I mean what these sites could do generously (if they wished to), do it when some BIG HEARTED person forwards the mail.
And guess what??? They do it without attaching any kind of tracker in the mail… Not to mention that doing any thing even near to attaching a tracker would be a threat to an individuals privacy… πŸ™‚

I cannot stop myself from sharing one other similar interesting mail. The mail said that an INDIAN BOY HAS CHALLENGED BILL GATES BY DEVELOPING AN O/S CALLED “O! YES”, which very Robust, Secure, blah blah blah… And HP has proposed to purchase it.
Now, the first thing… making such an O/S is no joke. This has nothing to do with the crappy nature of WINDOWS (hehehhe), it’s just means that it’s very difficult for a young child to do so.
Secondly, if someone succeeds in doing so, this news would be the hottest one around…. not one which has to be informed via email. πŸ˜› And the most interesting part….. This mail has been doing rounds since 5 years (at least) :))

These mails are generally used for two reasons:

  1. For fun…. or to make mockery of someone.
  2. For stealing your mail id for spamming……. I know this is strange, but it’s true. If you have any such mail in your mail box, just try to count the number of email ids in it…. and then imagine what would you do with them if you were a spammer. These mails are infact sent by spammers so that they can have a reasonably beautiful number of such mail ids.

JUNTA, please don’t feel bad if you have been forwarding such mails.
Obviously, nobody knows everything… but you can be a little careful when you recieve such mails.

  1. Ignore such mails.
  2. If you really feel that the mail is genuine and need to be forwarded, GOOGLE some keywords contained in the mail,
  3. or forward it after removing all the previous email addresses.
  4. ALTERNATELY, YOU MAY ALSO DISTRIBUTE THE LINK OF THIS ARTICLE FOR SPREADING AWARENESS πŸ™‚

God’s give Interviews !!!

So, here I am with my first tech. blog that I wrote in the midst of my (frustu) sems, but couldn’t post due to some “technical reasons” πŸ˜› .

I had come across the interviews of two gods in the field of computer security:

  1. Paul (Tony) Watson (I prefer to call him jus Tony Watson πŸ˜€ ). Currently working with Google. I really wonder when the hell does this guy work. I mean each and every time I visit his site or blog, I see some new pics being posted. πŸ˜‰ He shot to fame when he discovered a TCP/IP flaw, but made a place in my heart by his sweet comment on fyodor, where he refers him as Fyodor, the great. πŸ™‚ He was interviewed by whitedust.net. If you know some other interview of God Tony ^:)^ , please lemme know.

halloween2001-wig0.jpg

God in full form


paulwatson4.jpg

In a Mysterious Mood

  1. Fyodor or Fyodor, the great, the guy behind world’s most powerful vulnerability scanner, nmap. Anything said about him would be less, but the best thing I like about him is his down to earth nature. Read his interviews. For newbies, nmap feauterd in Matrix Reloaded and it’s source code in Battle Royale, a Japanese movie (if anyone wants to watch, may contact me πŸ™‚ )….. and he himself feautured in the third edition (Clustermind) of comics published by hero-z.org, a legitimate child of zone-h. He gave his interviews at slashdot, zone-h, and whitedust.

fyodor0.jpg

God Looks at You

fyodor.jpg

The Smiling Devil.. (Oops) Genius πŸ˜€

So this is it people. The show time has come to an end. If you are still wondering about the content of this article…. You need to understand that there are a lot of hyperlinks in it, that need to be visited to unleash the treasure :).

Have a nice time,
3~