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Issue of May 2003 
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Closing the backdoors to your network

No security strategy is complete if you don't know the ways and routes that crackers use to get into your computer. This is the area that this security book tries to address.

If you want to secure your Linux boxes, this book will give you many of the basics. This is more so the case, since Linux has the distinction of many hacks, exploits and network security tools on and for use on it. The main issues covered in the book are Linux security basics, external attacks, internal user threats, and server issues.

The topics dealt with in the external attacks section are social engineering, Trojans, viruses, physical attacks, and network attacks. Server issues dealt with include mail, FTP, and web servers. Access control on firewalls has also been dealt with in the section.
The book has also covered security features of the different Linux distributions. The Linux flavours covered are Red Hat, SuSE, Debian and Slackware. However, the coverage is rather rudimentary in nature, although it will suffice for a novice or an intermediately skilled security professional.

Title: Hacking Linux Exposed: Linux Security Secrets & Solutions
Authors: Brian Hatch, James Lee, George Kurtz
Publisher: Tata McGraw Hill Publishing Company
Pages: 566
Price: 425/-

Voice on networks

This book is a hands-on guide, which can help the IT Head deploy real-time voice communications over IP, Frame Relay, Intranets, and the Internet. Lower cost of communication is the need of the day in most enterprises in India. So this book can be a good start for the IT Head who wants to take advantage of technology to transmit voice over an existing data network.

Technology areas that are essential to deploy voice over data like latest standards and protocols, gateways, voice compression methods, bandwidth management, QoS methods, and traffic control are covered in moderate detail in the book. It also talks about security issues, potential technology problems, and regulatory issues. You also get a short Biology lesson when the author describes the features of human speech. A good book to have by your side.

Title: Voice & Data Internetworking - Third Edition
Author: Gil Held
Publisher: Tata McGraw Hill Publishing Company Limited
Pages: 397
Price: Rs. 375/-

Internet Humour

Answers to questions you always wanted to know but were too busy to ask.

Q: What does it mean to 'boot' your server?
A: Booting a server is a simple procedure that's performed when it acts up. Let's say it's the 20th time in an hour that the OS has locked up. You simply lift the computer up at about chest-high level and drop-kick it. It doesn't always fix the problem, but it does tend to make you feel a little better.

Q. What is computer memory?
A. All computers must have a certain amount of memory. This is available in two formats: RAM and ROM. The type you choose is down to personal preference. A lot of people will make jokes about 8 RAM being 8 male sheep, but these people are plain geeks and have no sense of humor. To set the record straight: 8 RAM is not 8 male sheep, but four male sheep. They are internally doubled by the CPU.

Q. What is a monitor?
A. A monitor is a TV, not a very good one though, since you can't get satellite or cable channels. This problem was discovered only after production had begun, and the custom moulds had been manufactured. Thus there is little that can be done to rectify the problem, although a large proprietary software manufacturer plans to release an upgrade soon.

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