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Issue of November 2002 
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A hands-on guide to LANs

Local Area Networks: Management, Design and Security aims to give a practical introduction into the running and design of LANs and a look at the technology behind it. The content explores the hardware as well as the software components and running methods with practical examples. It uses the examples of Novell NetWare, Linux, and Windows 2000-based systems since they are most commonly used NOS.

The book begins with some background material about data communication, which can be avoided by advanced users. It moves on to the client and server architecture that makes up a typical LAN. The server's construction and specifications are particularly discussed. Structured cabling and switch technology are also talked about in reasonable detail.

Software applications for LANs talks about OS functions and security-related administration. The philosophy of running a LAN setup covers the different ways in which a system administrator can do his/her job. The book ends with a look at Intranets. It talks about how an Intranet can help an enterprise improve communication within itself.
The book is great for someone who wants to get back to the basics and take a retrospective look at the nitty-gritties of LAN networking. A handy thing to have around even if you're an expert.

Title: Local Area Networks: Management, Design, and Security. A Practial Approach
Author: Arne Mikalsen, Per Borgesen
Publisher: Wiley Dreamtech India Pvt. Ltd.
Pages: 444
Price: Rs 279

Spooky stories

It seems that along with the approach of Diwali and Halloween, the activities of the evil-doers of the connected world have intensified in the last few weeks.

Researchers from the University of California at San Diego said online vandals intent on lashing out at companies and rivals stage DoS attacks more than 4,000 times every week. And in the last three weeks, more than 4000 attacks were spotted in each week. Thankfully, more than half of the attacks lasted less than 10 minutes. The targets were, America Online, Microsoft's Hotmail, a large number of individual users, and small businesses.

In another incident, the root servers which manage the Internet's DNS were subject to a brutal DoS attack this month. A flood of data barraged the servers in an attempt to slow down server performance, but the simple nature of the attack, and the system's resiliency, allowed administrators to quickly block the data stream. According to security experts, a more sophisticated attack could have disrupted the root servers long enough to impair Internet access.

And speaking of spooky happenings, do you know the number of DNS servers that were attacked? The number is 13. To spook you further here's a list of the top ten viruses that attacked servers in September 2002.

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