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OpenH323.org is the home of the OpenH332 project, which is producing a free implementation of the H.323 protocol stack. H.323 is an audio/video conferencing protocol, used by such proprietary applications as NetMeeting. Soon, there will be no need to use non-free software to take part in these gatherings.
An extensive collection of system administration material (tutorials, resources, etc) can be found at sysads.com.ph.
Section Editor: Jon Corbet
September 9, 1999
Letters to the editor should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. Preference will be given to letters which are short, to the point, and well written. If you want your email address "anti-spammed" in some way please be sure to let us know. We do not have a policy against anonymous letters, but we will be reluctant to include them.
From: Mike Richardson <email@example.com> To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Exporting Office Suites to Browsers Date: Thu, 2 Sep 1999 13:35:46 +0100 Ah! So, exporting software to users' machines has popped up again. Personally, I rather think that it will submerge once again. Desktop machines a pretty cheap, management like to have 'their' machine with 'their' software and 'their' data, its more sexy, etc., etc. But, maybe there is something here that can benefit the Linux (and Unix in general) community at the expence of M$oft and Windoze. I think we should distinguish two cases. First, there are the "home" users who are distinguished by virtue of having relatively slow, typically dialup, access to the InterNet. Exporting software is a dead duck in this case - too slow and/or too expensive (either due to connection times or pay-per-use). The second case, though, is the "corporate" user. In this case there is a high-speed permanant connection to the company servers. In this case the incremental cost of using the exported software is essentially zero; the company pays for it up-front and network usage has little cost. But! There is still the question of whether web browsers are stable enough to trust with this sort of activity - and the answer is, they probably are not. But! But! In the Linux/Unix world, we don't have to worry about needing a web browser as the front end, we have a perfectly good system already, viz X11. So, my point is this. A lot of effort is going into KDE and Gnome at the moment, and some truly excellent applications are appearing or are in the pipeline. But, the packaging for them is essentially single- machine. Maybe what we need here is some _explicitly_ client/server based packaging ...... Just my two'n'sixpence worth Mike Richardson
From: Greg Owen <gowen@SoftLock.com> To: "'email@example.com'" <firstname.lastname@example.org> Subject: Security page and kernel modules Date: Thu, 2 Sep 1999 10:56:45 -0400 I was a bit suprised to see no mention of the recent code postings which allow intruders to use loadable kernel modules to hide their control and presence in this weeks security page. I learned about it this week using Kernel Traffic item http://www.kt.opensrc.org/kt19990830_32.html#13. It seems to me there is a quick and dirty lesson here - if you have a machine you want secured, use a static kernel and disable module loading. I've done this in the past, but didn't know there was such a good reason! As always, thanks for the otherwise impeccable newsletter. -- gowen -- Greg Owen -- email@example.com
Date: Fri, 03 Sep 1999 01:56:07 -0400 From: Joe Drew <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: email@example.com Subject: Caldera 2.3 under NDA It sounds bad, but after I'd thought about it a bit it seems like it's alright. Ok, the GPL and other assorted Free Software licenses say "You've got these rights, and you have to do these things in order to keep them." But along comes Caldera, with its new packaging and distribution of these pieces of Free Software. Caldera says "Ok, if you want to get your hands on this CD you've got to sign this piece of paper which says that you have decided to not exercise your rights under the GPL, and if you do we can sue you into the ground and back." Seems ok to me. -- Joe Drew http://www.woot.net "Larry Flynt is right!"
Date: Thu, 2 Sep 1999 16:32:49 +0200 From: Luca Berra <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: email@example.com Cc: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: A petition to get LVM into the kernel Good morining, In the kernel page of issue 9902 concerning the linux-lvm petition Jon Corbet states: '... Attempting to replace those criteria with "special interest group" pressure is not the way to get a better kernel. Hopefully those wanting LVM in the kernel can discuss the matter with Linus and find out what, if anything, is blocking that inclusion.' Actually before deciding to make a petition we did. in fact you'll find LVM in some of -ac patches. The idea of the petition came when someone reported to Heinz Mauelshagen the linux-lvm mantainer "that Linus wants to wait before putting LVM into the stock kernel to see if enough people are interested to have this." We decided that having a document that summarizes the reasons why we feel that LVM is needed in the stock kernel, and have it subscribed by anyone who is interested was the best way to let him know. Regards, Luca -- Luca Berra -- email@example.com Communications Media & Services S.r.l.