2001 07 19

                    LINUX NEWS
              Thursday, July 19, 2001
    Read By Over 6,000 Linux Enthusiasts Weekly!


1) Sean’s Notes

2) Linux News

Linux Clusters Grow Business
Guardian Digital EnGarde Secure Linux
DocBook Publishing
Slackware 8 Review

3) Linux Resources

IDE Resources
Maximum RPM
Linux+ Cramsession Released
Shell Scripting Tutorial
Internet Sharing

4) App o’ the week

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ADVERTISEMENT ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Tired of looking everywhere for newsletters with the technical information you need? FreeTechMail.org can help. It has the largest network of high quality opt-in newsletters on the Net. FreeTechMail’s search engine enables you to find all the newsletters to keep you at the forefront of the IT industry. Subscribe to your IT newsletters today at:


For information on how to advertise in this newsletter
please contact mailto:adsales@BrainBuzz.com or visit

1) Sean's Notes
A couple weeks ago I reported on Adobe's lawyers threatening
action against the author of KIllustrator for trademark
violation.  The Register reports that this was done without
the consent or knowledge of Adobe, and that it's all part
of an interesting German copyright law.  He's since changed
the name, and all seems well in that respect.


However, Adobe's not off the hook.  A Russian programmer who
exposed serious flaws in the PDF encryption scheme was
arrested for DMCA violations after the Feds were tipped off
by Adobe. He was in Las Vegas giving a presentation at the
Black Hat conference.


In a nutshell, DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act) is a
law in the USA that says that it is illegal to write software
that circumvents copyright controls.  Adobe's product is
used to protect documents from being copied.  Easy enough?
Not quite.

Most of the plugins that provide the PDF encryption are
third-party, so anybody could theoretically copy them.  One
of the companies using this decided to encrypt the data with
ROT-13 -- 'A' becomes 'N', 'B' becomes 'O', and so on.
That's some pretty serious stuff there!  The mechanism that
is used to employ these plugins is not much better, so this
software was able to get through pretty much any protection.

Furthermore, the software this guy wrote is sold for $99, far
above the $20-$30 that the files go for.  You also need to be
the legitimate copyright holder (ie. you need the password or
key in the first place).

Now, there is nothing wrong with owning a copyright, and
making money off it.  (This is where the whole Linux angle
is coming in)  Why develop secure systems in private?  The
open nature of Linux development means that more eyes will
be on your code.

How many eyes are on your operating system?  How about that
web server that protects your business transactions?  That
cryptography that protects your email -- it's good, right?

Perhaps what irks me more about the development of secure
systems in private are vendors getting governments to
legislate it.  If someone wants to advertise a false sense
of security, I'd like to know people are out there trying
to prove it, right or wrong.

Who knows if DMCA will hold up in court.  If it does, it has
serious implications for the Internet community.  Linux users
have an interest in all of this, as it goes against the whole
development model that has brought us to where we are.

Long live the Penguin,


Visit the Linux News Board at

2) Linux News

Linux Clusters Grow Business
In days of old, it was big names like Cray and SGI that built
the huge machines. Want to simulate a nuclear explosion?
You'll need one big machine! These days, big machines can be
built of many smaller and cheaper machines. Lots of companies
are building their business out of this, as this article


Guardian Digital EnGarde Secure Linux
The name of this distribution is quite the mouthful. You may
recognize this from linuxsecurity.com, since the maintainers
of the site are the developers of EnGarde. This review covers
the installation process, and the features that this
distribution brings to the table. It boasts a nice web
interface, and easy installation. Well worth a look.


DocBook Publishing
DocBook is a set of standards that allow you to write text in
an SGML/XML fashion, and have them render it in HTML, PDF, PS,
or any number of formats. It's useful if you're writing a book,
or academic papers. This book from the folks at Prima Press
is all about DocBook, and how to use it to your advantage.


Slackware 8 Review
Before I started using RedHat, I was a huge slackware fanatic.
The distribution has come a long way, including some turmoil
when the parent company dropped the product. Not letting that
stop it, the slackware team has released 8.0.

http://www.maximumlinux.org/article.php?story 010716225904639

3) Linux Resources

IDE Resources
Understanding the system underneath the OS is almost as
important as understanding the OS itself. A knowledge of the
relevant standards also helps you squeak out more performance,
and to choose hardware more wisely. This site is all about
IDE drives, how they work, and which ones to choose.


Maximum RPM
Not only is this site the place to grab the latest version
of the RedHat Package Manager, but it is home to an excellent
(free) book called "Maximum RPM". This book has everything
you'd ever want on using RPM, including how to make your own


Linux+ Cramsession Released
Brainbuzz brings you the Cramsession for the upcoming Linux+
exam from Comp Tia. Topics covered include Planning,
Installing Configuring, Maintaining, and Troubleshooting a
Linux system.


Shell Scripting Tutorial
Shell scripting is one of the more important skills a Unix
user can have. This guide is a complete tutorial to the
world of shell scripting.


Internet Sharing
Brainbuzz user Guitarlynn has a knack for explaining things.
In this article, she explains some of the finer points of
getting multiple computers shared through one Linux box using
a package called PMFirewall. There are also some helpful
hints for dialup users.


4) App o' the week
Forgot the password to that pesky zipfile? Co-worker left
without letting you know? Zipcracker is a program that will
brute force that password. It has PVM support, so it will
run under a Beowulf cluster (just in case you have one
hanging around), and even has a version for WIN32.


(C) 2001 BrainBuzz.com. All Rights Reserved.

         This message is from BrainBuzz.com.

You are currently subscribed to the
   Hottest Linux News and Resources
   as: sean@ertw.com

To un-subscribe from this newsletter by e-mail:
   send a blank email message to:


To Subscribe to this newsletter by e-mail:
   send a blank email message to: