Categories
Internet, Unix en security

Wiki spam, the new threat?

Web 2.0 would enable users to participate and turn the web into a place where users is at the center. But after a couple of years this maybe a dream as more and more robots come online and start to demand their place on the web. A place to help their masters who need to host backlinks, content or some weird project like the Graffiti Network research project at Brown University.

Looking at the logfiles of one Web 2.0 application based on MediaWiki gives enough to think about. The MediaWiki installation is protected by some extensions to prevent spam and this is the reason I didn’t notice some issues. Those extensions don’t stop abusers from trying to post (between 17 and 21 KB per post) their content to the Main_Page. And with about 10000 postings by 3600 machines for every day of the week it gives an indication how big the issue has become.

For now they are unable to post, but the network appears to be big and growing. And some day they will find a way to work around the current antispam extensions. So the time has come to start collecting data about those abuse attempts and match them with spam on weblogs and spammy e-mails. Hopefully there is a relation, but I fear the moment that Web 2.0 is realy to open for the world to handle.

Categories
Privacy & veiligheid

Going with portableapps.com

I tried, I tried hard, I couldn’t handle it. Microsoft Internet Explorer 6 without a proper Javascript-engine is a real nightmare, but officially I have to deal with it at a customer site. I could install Firefox in my homedir and use some of my limited storage space, but I would still break company policy. On the other side not having access to my sources like some Wiki’s, webmail, Safari Online, etc would stop me from doing my job basicly.

But it appears there is a solution if you can access a thumbdrive as in my case. Most thumbdrives has U3 which allows you to run software of your thumbdrive, but there is maybe an even easier solution. Most open source applications that have a Win32-port can be packaged to run of a thumbdrive. The most famous packaging sites for this is PortableApps.com.

Officially I don’t install any software on a machine and I don’t break any company policies. I doubt how long it would take before CD-drives and USB-connectors are closed again due to dataloss or stolen data. But then again, they could also offer a proper browser. It is also good to know there are companies with even stranger policies and solutions. Security should be about enabling people not trying to stop them as they will work around the issue sooner or later to get things done.

Categories
Internet, Unix en security

Upgrade naar WordPress 2.7

De applicatie WordPress komt langzaam in de klasse van phpBB en Gallery v1, maar dit zijn geen complimenten. Ook de 2.6-serie was onderheving aan de nodige onderhoud vanwege problemen in de code. En hoewel het misschien makkelijker was om een andere applicatie te zoeken bevalt WordPress wel en met de komst van release 2.7 is het gebruik ook nog een stuk fijner geworden. De applicatie begint nu langzaam een Web 2.0 applicatie te worden en hopelijk nu ook volwassen in de code waardoor er minder onderhoud nodig gaat zijn.

Met de komst van de nieuwe release wordt het ook tijd om te kijken of het hostingtechnisch ook beter kan. Zeker om efficient meerdere weblogs op een server te hosten, maar ook kijken welke plugins handig zijn en welke eigenlijk hun weg naar WordPress zelf moeten vinden. Ook is het nu langzaam tijd geworden om beter naar OpenID te kijken en hoe het goed toe te passen. Kortom een leuk project voor de komende maand om nog wat dingen te gaan uitzoeken.