« | Home | Categories | »

Open Source Code Contains Security Holes

Posted on February 5th, 2008 at 18:17 by John Sinteur in category: Free Software, Microsoft


Open source code, much like its commercial counterpart, tends to contain one security exposure for every 1,000 lines of code, according to a program launched by the Department of Homeland Security to review and tighten up open source code’s security.

Popular open source projects, such as Samba, the PHP, Perl, and Tcl dynamic languages used to bind together elements of Web sites, and Amanda, the popular open source backup and recovery software running on half a million servers, were all found to have dozens or hundreds of security exposures and quality defects.

A total of 7,826 open source project defects have been fixed through the Homeland Security review, or one every two hours since it was launched in 2006, according to David Maxwell, open source strategist for Coverity, maker of the source code checking system, the Prevent Software Quality System, that’s being used in the review.

At the same time, projects like Samba have been adept at correcting the vulnerabilities, once they were identified. Samba was found to have a total of 236 defects, a far lower rate than average for 450,000 lines of code. Of the 236 defects, 228 have been corrected, said Maxwell in an interview.

And as a result everyone’s security improves.

Except Windows users. Will somebody please think of the Windows users?

No? Okay.

Write a comment


  1. You mean, that non-OS related softwares are listed up there and you try to connect it to the OS?
    Hmm.. Then please, will someone think of the Ferrari users? It’s not listed up there.
    Apples and oranges.

    And yes, I think that Windows is not totally secure, and not the best OS out there.
    Unfortunately the same goes for the rest.

    But please, don’t mix things.

  2. I’m not mixing things. There’s a huge subsidy to find bugs in software, and not all software is tested equally. I think the same amount of external effort should be taken to make windows better.

  3. Ah, then I agree. Then I should write “Except users of commercial softwares. Will somebody please think of the users of commercrial softwares?”

    And that include AS400, Mac OSX, Photoshop, Adobe Acrobat, etc., softwares we buy and use daily.
    Now, I just have to find a way to convince my boss that the software we sell should be opened up to people so everyone can see how we solved the business problems and fix our bugs :))

    You have to decide between selling softwares or having a ton of people working on your code around the world. People, who usually make their living with writing softwares that are not bugfixed by thousands all around the world.

LimerickDB: Top 150

Posted on February 5th, 2008 at 17:59 by John Sinteur in category: Quote


There once was a gal from Peru
whose limericks stopped on line two.

Write a comment

Taiwan group guilty of 90 percent of Microsoft piracy

Posted on February 5th, 2008 at 17:52 by John Sinteur in category: Microsoft


Microsoft claims that a small group led by a recently jailed Taiwanese man was the source of almost all high quality pirated copies of its software up until his arrest in 2004.

The claim suggests that Microsoft practically wiped out commercial piracy of its products with the arrest of Huang Jer-sheng, the owner of Taiwan-based software distributor Maximus Technology.

The fact that it was high-quality is, of course, what tipped people off that it wasn’t an authentic Microsoft product.

Write a comment

Why I am an abortion doctor

Posted on February 5th, 2008 at 13:05 by John Sinteur in category: News


These acts of terrorist violence have affected virtually every aspect of my and my family’s life. Our lives have changed forever. I must live with security measures that I never dreamed about when I was learning how to deliver babies.

Write a comment

Rotten at the Core:Military Commissions Continue This Week At Guantánamo Bay

Posted on February 5th, 2008 at 12:35 by John Sinteur in category: Mess O'Potamia


First, a little perspective: More than 770 men have been held at Guantánamo; the population is  now down to 275. That’s progress, of  course, but even as the numbers go down, the costs continue to skyrocket. During the military flight to the base this Saturday, I asked a Department of Defense official how many people are now  stationed there. He told me approximately 7,000: 2,500 are U.S. service personnel and the rest  include what he referred to as third-party nationals — mostly Filipinos and  Jamaicans — who provide the labor to keep the facilities going. How is it a wise policy choice to create an infrastructure that requires 7,000 people to imprison 275 men?

Of course, the costs to the United States are much more than financial: more significant are the moral, legal, diplomatic and political consequences of holding hundreds of prisoners in arbitrary and  indefinite detention. At the heart of American values is the principle of habeas corpus, which demands due process and fair trials before an  independent judiciary. The United States’ system of detention and trial at Guantánamo has, for the past six years, betrayed that principle and undermined this  country’s historical position as an international champion of human rights and  civil liberties.

Omar Khadr’s case is  a good illustration of how far the Bush administration has strayed from the  values most Americans share. One of the key issues in Khadr’s hearing, which is  likely to continue into tomorrow, is whether the administration will succeed in  becoming the first government in modern times to prosecute for war crimes  someone who was a child when the alleged crimes were committed. The alleged  facts are these: in July 2002, during a firefight in Khost, Afghanistan, U.S. Special  Forces attacked and killed most of the occupants in a compound to which Khadr’s  father had sent him. During that battle, the U.S. alleges that Khadr threw a grenade that killed a U.S. soldier, Sgt. Christopher  Speer. Khadr was shot and bleeding when he was captured.

There’s no doubt  that Khadr has been charged with serious offenses. The problem, though, is that the military commission proceedings don’t meet international — or U.S. — standards of fairness. The flaws in the system are magnified when applied, as in Khadr’s case, to a juvenile offender: the commissions have no procedures  that would allow a judge to take into account the lesser moral culpability of child offenders, which all civilized nations recognize, and their greater  susceptibility to coercion.

Recognition of the  special needs of child offenders in the context of armed conflict are part of  the law of this land. In 2002, the United States ratified the United Nations’ Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on Involvement of Children in Armed Conflict. That protocol, together with internationally recognized juvenile justice standards, recognizes that juveniles caught up as participants in armed conflict should be rehabilitated  and provided “all appropriate assistance for their physical and psychological  recovery and their social reintegration.”

Khadr’s detention  and treatment has been to the contrary. In U.S. custody, he was denied access to a lawyer for more than two years and, his lawyers say, he was severely abused while at Guantánamo. His lawyers allege that he was shackled in painful  positions, threatened with rape, and used as a “human mop” to clean up his own  urine during one interrogation session. As international human rights groups said in letters sent on Friday to Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, “The U.S. government’s failure to properly treat Khadr as a child  in detention violated U.S. legal obligations under the laws of war, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and international juvenile justice  standards.”

Write a comment

Jorans ‘handlanger’ legt verklaring af

Posted on February 5th, 2008 at 10:53 by John Sinteur in category: News


Daury Rodriguez, de man die volgens Joran van der Sloot zou hebben geholpen het lichaam van Natalee Holloway weg te werken, heeft een verklaring afgelegd bij het Openbaar Ministerie op Aruba. Op het moment van Natalee’s verdwijning, eind mei 2005, was Rodriguez niet op Aruba maar aan het werk bij een uitzendbureau in Nederland.

Write a comment

Howlin’ Wolf

Posted on February 5th, 2008 at 10:42 by John Sinteur in category: News


Write a comment

RIAA Wants Songwriter Royalty Lowered

Posted on February 5th, 2008 at 10:26 by John Sinteur in category: Intellectual Property


The case before a panel of copyright judges is different from the usual squabbles over money that pit the major record labels against new-media companies because it also features a family fight between the music publishers and songwriters and the rest of the music industry.

At issue is the so-called “mechanical royalty” — payments made for copies of sound recordings, including those made by digital means, to songwriters and publishers.

In a twist for royalty fights, such new-media players as Yahoo, Apple and Napster and major record labels agree with one another and want the royalty they pay to the publishers and songwriters to be lowered.

The labels contend that the music publishers have gotten fat as their business has starved and want the payment method rewritten. According to papers filed by the RIAA at the Copyright Royalty Board, the labels want the board to reduce the rate to 8% of wholesale revenue. The current rate is about 9 cents per song, but it often is lowered in negotiations with the record companies. That money usually is split 50-50 between the publisher and the songwriter.

Anybody who still thinks RIAA is doing all this suing “for the artists” is clearly clinically insane.

Write a comment


Posted on February 5th, 2008 at 10:08 by John Sinteur in category: Cartoon


Write a comment


Posted on February 5th, 2008 at 10:04 by John Sinteur in category: Cartoon






Write a comment

Eli Manning, Give Back Your Hybrid Escalade!

Posted on February 5th, 2008 at 9:48 by John Sinteur in category: News


Eli Manning… our hero???Who doesn’t love a hero? And after a gorgeous performance in Super Bowl XLII, Eli Manning deserves to be one.

So, with 2008 marked already as the Year of Green, I can only humbly ask that our first hero of the year, Giants quarterback Eli Manning, give BACK to Cadillac the keys to their hybrid Escalade with a thanks but no thanks.

Why? Because this so-called “improvement” is like rubbing snot on dry chapped hands and hoping that will make it smoother and silkier. This conspicuously huge road-oxymoron– a luxury SUV? — boasts that it will now get you “50 percent better fuel economy.” It said so even during the multi-million dollar ad campaign.

But unlike its humbler non-hybrid co-campaigner, Ford Focus, it didn’t mention what that fuel economy was.

It’s 12.

Write a comment

Apple //c

Posted on February 5th, 2008 at 9:47 by John Sinteur in category: Apple, Great Picture


On Thursday night, Kathryn and I unboxed my latest Ebay acquisition: an Apple //c. There are many vintage Apple II computers available for auction, but this one is special:

It’s never been opened. Ever. It hasn’t seen the light of day since before it was shipped on May 5th, 1988.

I wrestled with whether I should open the box, or store it and let it accrue collector’s value. In the end, I decided that the reason for my purchase wasn’t financial. My very first computer was an Apple //c, and I can’t see wanting to part with this computer, ever.


Write a comment

Natalee Holloway case by ABC

Posted on February 5th, 2008 at 9:27 by John Sinteur in category: News

In case you missed it.

Write a comment


  1. http://equivocationnation.blogspot.com/
    This guy is still scooping ABC. Joran’s lawyers just offered a deal on Dutch TV!!!!!