Friday

HOLES

HOLES IN THE BROWSER ActiveX a glance at the list of security holes shows that almost all attacks concentrate on plug-ins an not on the browser Program. However mean that Microsoft doesn't have to do anything about weak spot. Since its very inception, the ActiveX system has been vociferously criticized b security experts, the biggest peeve being that ActiveX plug-ins have too many rights to the host system a hacker happens to find a loophole, the chances that he can gain complete access to the operating system through it are high. Hackers find such loopholes by chance or if they have a good nose of vulnerabilities. A lot can be learned by observing how the plug in accesses the system while running.
WINDOWS SHARED LIBRARIES The second Biggest problem that internet Explore faces is the “Shared Libraries”(DLLs). These are resource libraries that can be re used over several instances and situation. Ex a function can be stored in a DLL file to run a routine that simply display GIF images. This function can then be used by every program that need to display GIFs, without having tho re-write it across several programs.
If a hacker finds a weak spot in a DLL, it will also affect IE when it uses that DLL file. Advantages hacker a manipulated GIF file with a Trojan is suitable for infections several programs .The easisest way to go about its is to present the Trojan as part of a website that would cause the browser to use that DLL file .as soon as a user opens the websites,the PC gets infected.

THE USER User himself the most powerful weapon in the hands of the hacker. User unknowingly run malicious programs ,there will continue to be hackers who devise ways to make them do that .ex Window XP service pack 2 post its release, plug ins cannot be installed automatically in IE. Since then hackers have been supplying malicious plug-ins on popularity visited download sides with convenient installation instruction.

HOLES

HOLES IN THE BROWSER ActiveX a glance at the list of security holes shows that almost all attacks concentrate on plug-ins an not on the browser Program. However mean that Microsoft doesn't have to do anything about weak spot. Since its very inception, the ActiveX system has been vociferously criticized b security experts, the biggest peeve being that ActiveX plug-ins have too many rights to the host system a hacker happens to find a loophole, the chances that he can gain complete access to the operating system through it are high. Hackers find such loopholes by chance or if they have a good nose of vulnerabilities. A lot can be learned by observing how the plug in accesses the system while running.
WINDOWS SHARED LIBRARIES The second Biggest problem that internet Explore faces is the “Shared Libraries”(DLLs). These are resource libraries that can be re used over several instances and situation. Ex a function can be stored in a DLL file to run a routine that simply display GIF images. This function can then be used by every program that need to display GIFs, without having tho re-write it across several programs.
If a hacker finds a weak spot in a DLL, it will also affect IE when it uses that DLL file. Advantages hacker a manipulated GIF file with a Trojan is suitable for infections several programs .The easisest way to go about its is to present the Trojan as part of a website that would cause the browser to use that DLL file .as soon as a user opens the websites,the PC gets infected.

THE USER User himself the most powerful weapon in the hands of the hacker. User unknowingly run malicious programs ,there will continue to be hackers who devise ways to make them do that .ex Window XP service pack 2 post its release, plug ins cannot be installed automatically in IE. Since then hackers have been supplying malicious plug-ins on popularity visited download sides with convenient installation instruction.

Secure your Web Experience

 
First we talk about PHISHING , Direct the user to a counterfeit website and have them enter passwords,credit card details and authentication pin numbers that can be harvested a process is called phishing . A web browser is the best starting point for safety measures against such attacks. However today most of the browser are equipped with phishing filters.
Today all the browsers were tested support the new “High Assurance SSL Certificate” standard. Thus, not only would the connection between the browser ant eh remote server be encoded int eh future but the session can event be authenticated by an independent online resource. Using this approach,only sites that are secure and certified will be displayed green in the address bar of the browser. However there are some of the website operator and banks who make use of this certificate as yet.
HIJACKING The most security problem with browsers is the presence of malicious code on (spy ware and ad-ware )heavy websites code that can be used to hijack your computer. Most of the time, the browser is not the target at all- the target is generally a plug-in(ADD-ON).adware attempts to persuade the user to install one of many innocent-looking Plugin ins that can actually be Trojans disguised as authentic applications. Spy ware forces its way into pre-installed plug-ins on your computer through programming lapses in your installed applications. Consequently the victim loses control over the browser and sometimes over the operating system.

LOCAL SECURITY Phishing and direct attacks over the internet are not the only dangers that lie in wait of browsers. It is only seldom that a hacker gets direct access to a PC and to its files,When the system is infested with a Trojan, the attacker need not be physically present to pic out local data the files in your browser's cache, for instance. The contents of the cache can deliver a pretty clear view of the surfing habits of a user. The cache often contains confidential information such as login details for web mail accounts. The result we could read the cache in all the three browsers and present the colleague with a mail that even contained a forum password he once used. However if the browser's connection is encoded with SSL, The web surfing data is not stored in the cache and therefore does not give away any information. You will see this when the browser address bar has an “HTTP” in it. or it there is a lock icon at the address browser window.IE's competitors not only allow you to control the size of the cache directory and delete it completely , but it is also possible to delete detailed deletion of individual websites.
Cookies discloses which sites were visited by the browser along with the timestamps(depending on the validity of the cookies).

UPDATES There are relatively few known security holes in the new browsers today. Because hackers are waiting until the newer versions increase in popularity before they launch their attacks on them. Internet Explore found over 100 holes in it.(2007).Opera 15 holes. Firefox 36 Gaps.

HOLES

Tuesday

: Anonymity Proxy Servers

Computer Troma Center: Anonymity Proxy Servers

Anonymity Proxy Servers

Anonymity

I can see you hiding in the shadows over there and so can the logs of all the web sites, FTP servers and other nooks and crannies you visit on the web. The sort of information gathered by these logs and which is available to the webmasters of the sites you visit include the address of the previous site you visited, your IP address, your computer's ID name, your physical location and the name of your ISP along with less personal details such as the operating system you're using and your screen resolution. If someone was snooping through your dustbin to gather information on consumer trends or tracking your every move to see where it is you go everyday you wouldn't be too chuffed would you. Well the web is no different, it's still an invasion of privacy and a threat to security and you don't have to put up with it.

Proxy servers:
Every time you visit a web site, detailed information about your system is automatically provided to the webmaster. This information can be used by hackers to exploit your computer or can be forwarded to the market research departments of consumer corporations who by tracking your activities on the internet are better equipped to direct more relevant spam at you. Your best defence against this is to use what is known as a proxy server, which will hide revealing information from the web sites you visit, allowing you to surf the web anonymously. These work by altering the way in which your browser retrieves web pages or connects to remote servers. With a proxy server set up, whenever you 'ask' IE or Netscape to look at a web page, the request is first sent through an external server which is completely independent of your ISP's servers. This third party server then does the requesting on your behalf so that it appears that the request came from them rather than you and your real IP address is never disclosed to the sites you visit. There is nothing to download and the whole process takes less than a minute.

There are two different ways to use proxy servers and both have their advantages and disadvantages. The first method is to use a web based service. What this involves is visiting the proxy's home page each time you want to browse a web site anonymously. The core component of such a system is the dialog box where you enter the address of the web site you want to visit. Each time you enter the URL of the site you want to browse via the proxy into this box, your personal information, IP address and so on is first encrypted before being sent to the site allowing you to maintain your anonymity. Two of the best examples of this type of web based proxy service are Code:
hxxp://www.rewebber.com/
and hxxp://www.anonymizer.com/.

Obviously one disadvantage of using a web based service like Rewebber or Anonymizer, however, is that you have to visit the proxies home page each time you want to surf anonymously. You could choose to select this page as your default home page, but it's still quite awkward if you're forever site hopping at the speed of light. The second main 'con' is that you often have to put up with extra adverts on the pages you visit. These are automatically inserted into the pages by the proxy - they have to pay for service somehow. More sophisticated and convenient solutions are also on offer yet they come with a price tag.

The second method you can use to protect your privacy via a proxy server involves adjusting the settings of your web browser so that you can surf anonymously without having to visit the home page of your proxy each time. To do this you will first need to know the name of your proxy server and the port number it uses. This information can be gleaned from either a public proxy server list or the FAQ referring to a private subscription based service. Once you have the name of the proxy server you wish to use, select 'Internet Options' from the 'Tools' menu of your browser. Now select 'Connections' followed by 'Settings' and tick the 'use a proxy server' check box. To finish the job all you have to do now is enter the name of the server in the 'address' box, the port which it uses in the 'port' box and go forth and surf anonymously.

Free, manual proxy servers as advertised on anonymity sites, if you can find one at all, are likely to be highly oversubscribed, and as a result the speed at which they retrieve web pages can deteriorate. In which case you can go in pursuit of a public proxy server list and select an alternative from it, which can then be set up manually. To locate such a list you can investigate sites such as Code:
hxxp://www.proxys4all.com/

however, this method isn't problem free either, so before you get too carried away and go jumping on the anonymity bandwagon there are a few things you should be aware of. It's very easy to use proxies to protect your privacy, but often the disadvantages of using them far out weigh the benefits. You see, the problem is that, like the proxy servers provided Rewebber et al, free, public proxies are nearly all over subscribed and so they can slow down web browsing considerably. Digging out fast reliable proxy servers is an art form in itself and is a skill which takes considerable practice. You could find a list of public proxy servers and then experiment with each one until you find one that runs at a reasonable speed, but this can be very time consuming and frustrating. Instead, your search would be much more efficient if you got a dedicated program to carry out this task for you. There are literally dozens of proxy seeking programs around which can do just that, and many of them are available as freeware. What these do is scan the Internet for public proxy servers. These servers are then tested for speed and anonymity (not all of them are truly anonymous, even if they claim to be!) and once you find one which suits your requirements you can select it as your default proxy with the click of a button.

One of the most significant advantages of using an automated tool to locate proxy servers is that you do not have to keep editing your proxy settings manually each time you wish to try out a new one. Instead, what you do is enter 'localhost' or '127.0.0.1' into the 'address' box and '8088' into the 'port' box of your browser's proxy settings menu and then forget about it. All future proxy switching is then orchestrated from within your proxy seeking software, which subsequently relays the information to your browser or whatever type of application you are attempting to make anonymous. For those of you who are curious 'localhost' and the IP address '127.0.0.1' are the names by which every computer on the Internet refers to itself.
Here's a good selection of links, which should help you to get started - Code:
hxxp://www.a4proxy.com/ Anonymity 4 Proxy
hxxp://www.helgasoft.com/hiproxy/ Hi Proxy
hxxp://www.proxy-verifier.com/ Proxy Verifier
hxxp://www.photono-software.de/ Stealther.

You may find that even when using these programs you have difficulty finding good proxy servers. It is for this reason that many people choose only to use proxy servers temporarily whilst doing something which may land them in trouble with their ISP, or in a worst case scenario with the law. The most obvious example of a situation in which you would want to cover your tracks is when scanning for public FTP servers and subsequently uploading to them. Most other net activities are unlikely to incur serious consequences so under these circumstances you can safely surf the web without a proxy. If you're really serious about protecting your privacy, however, your best bet is probably to invest in a dedicated, stable proxy such as the ones offered by Code:
hxxp://www.ultimate-anonymity.com/ Ultimate Anonymity


These aren't free, but may be worth the expense if you aren't keen on continuously switching proxy servers.

Before splashing out though it may be worth checking if your current ISP has a proxy server of its own which you can use. These aren't there to help you to commit cyber crimes and get away with it, they actually have a legitimate purpose as well - otherwise they wouldn't exist. You see, proxy servers were originally designed to help speed up web page loading times. Proxy servers contain a cache of all the web pages which have been requested via the browsers of the people using the proxy. When someone surfs the web using a proxy, the proxy first checks to see if it already has a copy of the web page stored in its cache. If this version of the page is bang up to date, it is sent to your computer and appears in your browser. If the page found in the cache of the proxy server is older than the one stored on the server hosting the page, a new request to the web server is made and the page is updated in the cache of the proxy before being sent to you. Because these servers use very fast internet connections they can retrieve web pages at much greater speeds than you can via your modest home setup. If these servers are located physically nearer to your home than the web host servers you wish to retrieve web pages from, the speed at which you browse the web will be accelerated.


Anonymity - Cookies
One last important point you need to be aware of before jumping in with both feet is that different programs have to be setup in different ways before being able to make external connections via a proxy server. For example, you can surf the web anonymously by modifying the settings in Internet Explorer or Netscape Navigator as explained earlier in this tutorial, but this will only affect your browser. If you then used Flash FXP to copy a batch of 0-day releases from one FTP server to another, this isn't going to protect you in the slightest. What you have to do is enter the name of the proxy server into each application you wish to make anonymous before making any external connections. This can usually be done by browsing through the preferences of your program to see if there is a 'use proxy server' option available. If there is, make sure you use it!


Cookies:
You have little to fear from the edible variety, but the digital ones can be a major threat to your security and privacy. A cookie is a tiny text file (usually less than 1KB in size), which is created and stored on your hard drive whenever you visit a dynamic (or an interactive if you like) web site. These are used to log your personal details so that you can access members only areas of web sites without having to type in a password every time, or to retain your customised settings so that they are available the next time you visit. If you're using a shared computer, anyone who visits the same site that you have previously logged in to can access your accounts. This is particularly worrying if you have entered your credit card details into a form on an e-commerce site. If your browser is set to automatically fill in these details whenever you
return to a previously visited site, this information could be clearly visible - you don't need me to explain the problems this could entail.

The solution to this problem is to delete any cookies which contain sensitive data once you have completed your transactions. Your cookies will be stored in a different place depending on which operating system you are using so you will have to use your detective skills to find them. As an example, in Windows XP they are located in your 'c:\Documents and Settings\Kylie Minogue\Cookies' directory (that is if your name is Kylie Minogue. Mine isn't in case you're wondering!). If you look in this directory, in some cases it is easy to identify which cookie is associated with which web site, but in other cases it's not so obvious. The cookie which was created when you visited Yahoo.com to check your email may be called kylie minogue@yahoo.txt for example. Unfortunately some cookies refer to the IP address of the site you visited and so look more like kylie minogue@145.147.25.21. These cookies can be selectively deleted one at a time if it's obvious which ones are causing a threat to your security, or you can just wipe out the whole lot in one fell swoop and have them recreated as and when they are required. However, if
you're really struggling to find your cookie jar, you could delete your cookies via your browser's tool bar instead. In Internet Explorer this can be done through the 'Tools' > 'Internet Options' menu items.

If all this sounds like too much hassle, you can always find a labour saving program which will be happy to take the job off your hands. These 'cookie crunching' programs allow you to be more selective when editing, viewing and deleting cookies from your system, and some of them will even prevent cookies from being created in the first place. Yes, I know you're hungry for links so I won't deprive you. Have a look here - Code:
hxxp://www.rbaworld.com/Programs/CookieCruncher/ Cookie
Cruncher
hxxp://www.thelimitsoft.com/ Cookie Crusher
hxxp://www.angove.com/ Cookie Killer
hxxp://www.kburra.com/ Cookie Pal
and
hxxp://www.cookiecentral.com/ Cookie Web Kit.
I can see you hiding in the shadows over there and so can the logs of all the web sites, FTP servers and other nooks and crannies you visit on the web. The sort of information gathered by these logs and which is available to the webmasters of the sites you visit include the address of the previous site you visited, your IP address, your computer's ID name, your physical location and the name of your ISP along with less personal details such as the operating system you're using and your screen resolution. If someone was snooping through your dustbin to gather information on consumer trends or tracking your every move to see where it is you go everyday you wouldn't be too chuffed would you. Well the web is no different, it's still an invasion of privacy and a threat to security and you don't have to put up with it.

Proxy servers:
Every time you visit a web site, detailed information about your system is automatically provided to the webmaster. This information can be used by hackers to exploit your computer or can be forwarded to the market research departments of consumer corporations who by tracking your activities on the internet are better equipped to direct more relevant spam at you. Your best defense against this is to use what is known as a proxy server, which will hide revealing information from the web sites you visit, allowing you to surf the web anonymously. These work by altering the way in which your browser retrieves web pages or connects to remote servers. With a proxy server set up, whenever you 'ask' IE or Netscape to look at a web page, the request is first sent through an external server which is completely independent of your ISP's servers. This third party server then does the requesting on your behalf so that it appears that the request came from them rather than you and your real IP address is never disclosed to the sites you visit. There is nothing to download and the whole process takes less than a minute.

There are two different ways to use proxy servers and both have their advantages and disadvantages. The first method is to use a web based service. What this involves is visiting the proxy's home page each time you want to browse a web site anonymously. The core component of such a system is the dialog box where you enter the address of the web site you want to visit. Each time you enter the URL of the site you want to browse via the proxy into this box, your personal information, IP address and so on is first encrypted before being sent to the site allowing you to maintain your anonymity. Two of the best examples of this type of web based proxy service are Code:
hxxp://www.rewebber.com/
and hxxp://www.anonymizer.com/.

Obviously one disadvantage of using a web based service like Rewebber or Anonymizer, however, is that you have to visit the proxies home page each time you want to surf anonymously. You could choose to select this page as your default home page, but it's still quite awkward if you're forever site hopping at the speed of light. The second main 'con' is that you often have to put up with extra adverts on the pages you visit. These are automatically inserted into the pages by the proxy - they have to pay for service somehow. More sophisticated and convenient solutions are also on offer yet they come with a price tag.

The second method you can use to protect your privacy via a proxy server involves adjusting the settings of your web browser so that you can surf anonymously without having to visit the home page of your proxy each time. To do this you will first need to know the name of your proxy server and the port number it uses. This information can be gleaned from either a public proxy server list or the FAQ referring to a private subscription based service. Once you have the name of the proxy server you wish to use, select 'Internet Options' from the 'Tools' menu of your browser. Now select 'Connections' followed by 'Settings' and tick the 'use a proxy server' check box. To finish the job all you have to do now is enter the name of the server in the 'address' box, the port which it uses in the 'port' box and go forth and surf anonymously.

Free, manual proxy servers as advertised on anonymity sites, if you can find one at all, are likely to be highly oversubscribed, and as a result the speed at which they retrieve web pages can deteriorate. In which case you can go in pursuit of a public proxy server list and select an alternative from it, which can then be set up manually. To locate such a list you can investigate sites such as Code:
hxxp://www.proxys4all.com/

however, this method isn't problem free either, so before you get too carried away and go jumping on the anonymity bandwagon there are a few things you should be aware of. It's very easy to use proxies to protect your privacy, but often the disadvantages of using them far out weigh the benefits. You see, the problem is that, like the proxy servers provided Rewebber et al, free, public proxies are nearly all over subscribed and so they can slow down web browsing considerably. Digging out fast reliable proxy servers is an art form in itself and is a skill which takes considerable practice. You could find a list of public proxy servers and then experiment with each one until you find one that runs at a reasonable speed, but this can be very time consuming and frustrating. Instead, your search would be much more efficient if you got a dedicated program to carry out this task for you. There are literally dozens of proxy seeking programs around which can do just that, and many of them are available as freeware. What these do is scan the internet for public proxy servers. These servers are then tested for speed and anonymity (not all of them are truly anonymous, even if they claim to be!) and once you find one which suits your requirements you can select it as your default proxy with the click of a button.

One of the most significant advantages of using an automated tool to locate proxy servers is that you do not have to keep editing your proxy settings manually each time you wish to try out a new one. Instead, what you do is enter 'localhost' or '127.0.0.1' into the 'address' box and '8088' into the 'port' box of your browser's proxy settings menu and then forget about it. All future proxy switching is then orchestrated from within your proxy seeking software, which subsequently relays the information to your browser or whatever type of application you are attempting to make anonymous. For those of you who are curious 'localhost' and the IP address '127.0.0.1' are the names by which every computer on the internet refers to itself.
Here's a good selection of links, which should help you to get started - Code:
hxxp://www.a4proxy.com/ Anonymity 4 Proxy
hxxp://www.helgasoft.com/hiproxy/ Hi Proxy
hxxp://www.proxy-verifier.com/ Proxy Verifier
hxxp://www.photono-software.de/ Stealther.

You may find that even when using these programs you have difficulty finding good proxy servers. It is for this reason that many people choose only to use proxy servers temporarily whilst doing something which may land them in trouble with their ISP, or in a worst case scenario with the law. The most obvious example of a situation in which you would want to cover your tracks is when scanning for public FTP servers and subsequently uploading to them. Most other net activities are unlikely to incur serious consequences so under these circumstances you can safely surf the web without a proxy. If you're really serious about protecting your privacy, however, your best bet is probably to invest in a dedicated, stable proxy such as the ones offered by Code:
hxxp://www.ultimate-anonymity.com/ Ultimate Anonymity


These aren't free, but may be worth the expense if you aren't keen on continuously switching proxy servers.

Before splashing out though it may be worth checking if your current ISP has a proxy server of its own which you can use. These aren't there to help you to commit cyber crimes and get away with it, they actually have a legitimate purpose as well - otherwise they wouldn't exist. You see, proxy servers were originally designed to help speed up web page loading times. Proxy servers contain a cache of all the web pages which have been requested via the browsers of the people using the proxy. When someone surfs the web using a proxy, the proxy first checks to see if it already has a copy of the web page stored in its cache. If this version of the page is bang up to date, it is sent to your computer and appears in your browser. If the page found in the cache of the proxy server is older than the one stored on the server hosting the page, a new request to the web server is made and the page is updated in the cache of the proxy before being sent to you. Because these servers use very fast internet connections they can retrieve web pages at much greater speeds than you can via your modest home setup. If these servers are located physically nearer to your home than the web host servers you wish to retrieve web pages from, the speed at which you browse the web will be accelerated.


Cookies
One last important point you need to be aware of before jumping in with both feet is that different programs have to be setup in different ways before being able to make external connections via a proxy server. For example, you can surf the web anonymously by modifying the settings in Internet Explorer or Netscape Navigator as explained earlier in this tutorial, but this will only affect your browser. If you then used Flash FXP to copy a batch of 0-day releases from one FTP server to another, this isn't going to protect you in the slightest. What you have to do is enter the name of the proxy server into each application you wish to make anonymous before making any external connections. This can usually be done by browsing through the preferences of your program to see if there is a 'use proxy server' option available. If there is, make sure you use it!


Cookies:
You have little to fear from the edible variety, but the digital ones can be a major threat to your security and privacy. A cookie is a tiny text file (usually less than 1kb in size), which is created and stored on your hard drive whenever you visit a dynamic (or an interactive if you like) web site. These are used to log your personal details so that you can access members only areas of web sites without having to type in a password every time, or to retain your customised settings so that they are available the next time you visit. If you're using a shared computer, anyone who visits the same site that you have previously logged in to can access your accounts. This is particularly worrying if you have entered your credit card details into a form on an e-commerce site. If your browser is set to automatically fill in these details whenever you
return to a previously visited site, this information could be clearly visible - you don't need me to explain the problems this could entail.

The solution to this problem is to delete any cookies which contain sensitive data once you have completed your transactions. Your cookies will be stored in a different place depending on which operating system you are using so you will have to use your detective skills to find them. As an example, in Windows XP they are located in your 'c:\Documents and Settings\Kylie Minogue\Cookies' directory (that is if your name is Kylie Minogue. Mine isn't in case you're wondering!). If you look in this directory, in some cases it is easy to identify which cookie is associated with which web site, but in other cases it's not so obvious. The cookie which was created when you visited Yahoo.com to check your email may be called kylie minogue@yahoo.txt for example. Unfortunately some cookies refer to the IP address of the site you visited and so look more like kylie minogue@145.147.25.21. These cookies can be selectively deleted one at a time if it's obvious which ones are causing a threat to your security, or you can just wipe out the whole lot in one fell swoop and have them recreated as and when they are required. However, if
you're really struggling to find your cookie jar, you could delete your cookies via your browser's tool bar instead. In Internet Explorer this can be done through the 'Tools' > 'Internet Options' menu items.

If all this sounds like too much hassle, you can always find a labour saving program which will be happy to take the job off your hands. These 'cookie crunching' programs allow you to be more selective when editing, viewing and deleting cookies from your system, and some of them will even prevent cookies from being created in the first place. Yes, I know you're hungry for links so I won't deprive you. Have a look here - Code:
hxxp://www.rbaworld.com/Programs/CookieCruncher/ Cookie
Cruncher
hxxp://www.thelimitsoft.com/ Cookie Crusher
hxxp://www.angove.com/ Cookie Killer
hxxp://www.kburra.com/ Cookie Pal
and
hxxp://www.cookiecentral.com/ Cookie Web Kit.

Deep Proxy View

Computer Troma Center: Deep Proxy View

Deep Proxy View

The exchange of information in Internet is made by the "client - server" model. A client sends a request (what files he needs) and a server sends a reply (required files). For close cooperation (full understanding) between a client and a server the client sends additional information about itself: a version and a name of an operating system, configuration of a browser (including its name and version) etc. This information can be necessary for the server in order to know which web-page should be given (open) to the client. There are different variants of web-pages for different configurations of browsers. However, as long as web-pages do not usually depend on browsers, it makes sense to hide this information from the web-server.

What your browser transmits to a web-server:
  • a name and a version of an operating system
  • a name and a version of a browser
  • configuration of a browser (display resolution, color depth, java / java script support, ...)
  • IP-address of a client , Other information

The most important part of such information (and absolutely needless for a web-server) is information about IP-address. Using your IP it is possible to know about you the following:
  • a country where you are from
  • a city
  • your provider?s name and e-mail
  • your physical address

Information, transmitted by a client to a server is available (accessible) for a server as environment variables. Every information unit is a value of some variable. If any information unit is not transmitted, then corresponding variable will be empty (its value will be undetermined).

These are some environment variables:

  • REMOTE_ADDR ? IP address of a client
  • HTTP_VIA ? if it is not empty, then a proxy is used. Value is an address (or several addresses) of a proxy server, this variable is added by a proxy server itself if you use one.
  • HTTP_X_FORWARDED_FOR ? if it is not empty, then a proxy is used. Value is a real IP address of a client (your IP), this variable is also added by a proxy server if you use one.
  • HTTP_ACCEPT_LANGUAGE ? what language is used in browser (what language a page should be displayed in)
  • HTTP_USER_AGENT ? so called "a user?s agent". For all browsers this is Mozilla. Furthermore, browser?s name and version (e.g. MSIE 5.5) and an operating system (e.g. Windows 98) is also mentioned here.
  • HTTP_HOST ? is a web server?s name
This is a small part of environment variables. In fact there are much more of them (DOCUMENT_ROOT, HTTP_ACCEPT_ENCODING, HTTP_CACHE_CONTROL, HTTP_CONNECTION, SERVER_ADDR, SERVER_SOFTWARE, SERVER_PROTOCOL, ...). Their quantity can depend on settings of both a server and a client.

These are examples of variable values:
  • REMOTE_ADDR = 194.85.1.1
  • HTTP_ACCEPT_LANGUAGE = ru
  • HTTP_USER_AGENT = Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 5.0; Windows 98)
  • HTTP_HOST = www.webserver.ru
  • HTTP_VIA = 194.85.1.1 (Squid/2.4.STABLE7)
  • HTTP_X_FORWARDED_FOR = 194.115.5.5

Anonymity at work in Internet is determined by what environment variables "hide" from a web-server.

If a proxy server is not used, then environment variables look in the following way:
  • REMOTE_ADDR = your IP
  • HTTP_VIA = not determined
  • HTTP_X_FORWARDED_FOR = not determined
According to how environment variables "hided" by proxy servers, there are several types of proxies
Transparent Proxies

They do not hide information about your IP address:
  • REMOTE_ADDR = proxy IP
  • HTTP_VIA = proxy IP
  • HTTP_X_FORWARDED_FOR = your IP
The function of such proxy servers is not the improvement of your anonymity in Internet. Their purpose is information cashing, organization of joint access to Internet of several computers, etc.
Anonymous Proxies

All proxy servers, that hide a client?s IP address in any way are called anonymous proxies

Simple Anonymous Proxies

These proxy servers do not hide a fact that a proxy is used, however they replace your IP with its own:
  • REMOTE_ADDR = proxy IP
  • HTTP_VIA = proxy IP
  • HTTP_X_FORWARDED_FOR = proxy IP
These proxies are the most widespread among other anonymous proxy servers.

Distorting Proxies

As well as simple anonymous proxy servers these proxies do not hide the fact that a proxy server is used. However a client?s IP address (your IP address) is replaced with another (arbitrary, random) IP:
  • REMOTE_ADDR = proxy IP
  • HTTP_VIA = proxy IP
  • HTTP_X_FORWARDED_FOR = random IP address
  • High Anonymity Proxies
These proxy servers are also called "high anonymity proxy". In contrast to other types of anonymity proxy servers they hide a fact of using a proxy:

  • REMOTE_ADDR = proxy IP
  • HTTP_VIA = not determined
  • HTTP_X_FORWARDED_FOR = not determined
That means that values of variables are the same as if proxy is not used, with the exception of one very important thing ? proxy IP is used instead of your IP address.
Summary

Depending on purposes there are transparent and anonymity proxies. However, remember, using proxy servers you hide only your IP from a web-server, but other information (about browser configuration) is accessible!

Active FTP vs. Passive FTP, a Definitive Explanation

Computer Troma Center: Active FTP vs. Passive FTP, a Definitive Explanation

Spyware,Mal-Ware,Hijackers,Dialers

Computer Troma Center: Spyware,Mal-Ware,Hijackers,Dialers

Spyware,Mal-Ware,Hijackers,Dialers

So, Let's Talk about all of This so the Question

What is Spy-Ware ?

Spy-ware is INTERNET jargon for advertising supported Software(ad-ware).It is way for shareware authors to make money from a product,other than by selling it to the users. There are Several large media companies that offer them to place banner ads in their products in exchange for a portion of the revenue from banner sales. So the idea “You don't have to pay for the software and the developers are still getting paid. If you find the banners annoying, There is usually an option to remove them, by paying the regular licensing fee. Known spywares.

Known spywares , There are thousands out there ,new ones are added to the list everyday,but here ara a few ,Ex , Alexa, Aureate/Radiate,BargainBuddy,ClickTillUiwin,Conducent Timeslink,Cydoor,eZula/kAzaa toptext,Flashpoint/Flashtrack, Flyswat, Gator, GoHip, Hotbar, ISTbar, Lions Pride Enterprises/Blazing Logic/Trek Blue, Lop (C2Media), Mattel Brodcast, Morpheus, NewDotNet, Realplayer, Songspy, Xupiter, Web3000, WebHancer, Windows Messenger Service Etc .

How to check if a program has spyware ?


  • Blocked Pop-ups(IE-Pop-ups etc browsers)
  • Google Toolbar
  • AdMuncher

If you want to remove Spyware ? Try this
Lavasoft ad-ware(www.lavasoftusa.com)
Ad ware is a multi spayware removal utility, that scans your memeory,registry and hard drive for known spyware components and lets you remove them.

Try Spybot and destroy , detects and removes spayware of different kinds. Also provide detail information .
Some Spyware removal software that U try like ,BPS Spyware and Adware Remover,SpySweeperv2.2,hijackthis ,Xp-AntiSpy,SpySites etc,

If you Would like more Information about “ Spyware “ then check below sites .

http://www.spychecker.com/
http://www.spywareguide.com/
http://www.cexx.org/adware.htm
http://www.theinfomaniac.net/infomaniac/co...rsSpyware.shtml
http://www.thiefware.com/links/
http://simplythebest.net/info/spyware.html



Increase Your Speed of Computer

Computer Troma Center: Increase Your Speed of Computer

Increase Your Speed of Computer

Computer Troma Center: Increase Your Speed of Computer

Friday

Active FTP vs. Passive FTP, a Definitive Explanation

  • Introduction
    One of the most commonly seen questions when dealing with firewalls and other Internet connectivity issues is the difference between active and passive FTP and how best to support either or both of them. Hopefully the following text will help to clear up some of the confusion over how to support FTP in a fire walled environment.

    This may not be the definitive explanation, as the title claims, however, I've heard enough good feedback and seen this document linked in enough places to know that quite a few people have found it to be useful. I am always looking for ways to improve things though, and if you find something that is not quite clear or needs more explanation, please let me know! Recent additions to this document include the examples of both active and passive command line FTP sessions. These session examples should help make things a bit clearer. They also provide a nice picture into what goes on behind the scenes during an FTP session. Now, on to the information...

    The Basics
    FTP is a TCP based service exclusively. There is no UDP component to FTP. FTP is an unusual service in that it utilizes two ports, a 'data' port and a 'command' port (also known as the control port). Traditionally these are port 21 for the command port and port 20 for the data port. The confusion begins however, when we find that depending on the mode, the data port is not always on port 20.


    Active FTP
    In active mode FTP the client connects from a random unprivileged port (N > 1024) to the FTP server's command port, port 21. Then, the client starts listening to port N+1 and sends the FTP command PORT N+1 to the FTP server. The server will then connect back to the client's specified data port from its local data port, which is port 20.

    From the server-side firewall's standpoint, to support active mode FTP the following communication channels need to be opened:

    FTP server's port 21 from anywhere (Client initiates connection)
    FTP server's port 21 to ports > 1024 (Server responds to client's control port)
    FTP server's port 20 to ports > 1024 (Server initiates data connection to client's data port)
    FTP server's port 20 from ports > 1024 (Client sends ACKs to server's data port)


    In step 1, the client's command port contacts the server's command port and sends the command PORT 1027. The server then sends an ACK back to the client's command port in step 2. In step 3 the server initiates a connection on its local data port to the data port the client specified earlier. Finally, the client sends an ACK back as shown in step 4.

    The main problem with active mode FTP actually falls on the client side. The FTP client doesn't make the actual connection to the data port of the server--it simply tells the server what port it is listening on and the server connects back to the specified port on the client. From the client side firewall this appears to be an outside system initiating a connection to an internal client--something that is usually blocked.

    Active FTP Example
    Below is an actual example of an active FTP session. The only things that have been changed are the server names, IP addresses, and user names. In this example an FTP session is initiated from testbox1.slacksite.com (192.168.150.80), a linux box running the standard FTP command line client, to testbox2.slacksite.com (192.168.150.90), a linux box running ProFTPd 1.2.2RC2. The debugging (-d) flag is used with the FTP client to show what is going on behind the scenes. Everything in red is the debugging output which shows the actual FTP commands being sent to the server and the responses generated from those commands. Normal server output is shown in black, and user input is in bold.

    There are a few interesting things to consider about this dialog. Notice that when the PORT command is issued, it specifies a port on the client (192.168.150.80) system, rather than the server. We will see the opposite behavior when we use passive FTP. While we are on the subject, a quick note about the format of the PORT command. As you can see in the example below it is formatted as a series of six numbers separated by commas. The first four octets are the IP address while the second two octets comprise the port that will be used for the data connection. To find the actual port multiply the fifth octet by 256 and then add the sixth octet to the total. Thus in the example below the port number is ( (14*256) + 178), or 3762. A quick check with net stat should confirm this information.

    testbox1: {/home/p-t/slacker/public_html} % ftp -d testbox2
    Connected to testbox2.slacksite.com.
    220 testbox2.slacksite.com FTP server ready.
    Name (testbox2:slacker): slacker
    ---> USER slacker
    331 Password required for slacker.
    Password: TmpPass
    ---> PASS XXXX
    230 User slacker logged in.
    ---> SYST
    215 UNIX Type: L8
    Remote system type is UNIX.
    Using binary mode to transfer files.
    ftp> ls
    ftp: setsockopt (ignored): Permission denied
    ---> PORT 192,168,150,80,14,178
    200 PORT command successful.
    ---> LIST
    150 Opening ASCII mode data connection for file list.
    drwx------ 3 slacker users 104 Jul 27 01:45 public_html
    226 Transfer complete.
    ftp> quit
    ---> QUIT
    221 Goodbye.


    Passive FTP
    In order to resolve the issue of the server initiating the connection to the client a different method for FTP connections was developed. This was known as passive mode, or PASV, after the command used by the client to tell the server it is in passive mode.

    In passive mode FTP the client initiates both connections to the server, solving the problem of firewalls filtering the incoming data port connection to the client from the server. When opening an FTP connection, the client opens two random unprivileged ports locally (N > 1024 and N+1). The first port contacts the server on port 21, but instead of then issuing a PORT command and allowing the server to connect back to its data port, the client will issue the PASV command. The result of this is that the server then opens a random unprivileged port (P > 1024) and sends the PORT P command back to the client. The client then initiates the connection from port N+1 to port P on the server to transfer data.

    From the server-side firewall's standpoint, to support passive mode FTP the following communication channels need to be opened:

    FTP server's port 21 from anywhere (Client initiates connection)
    FTP server's port 21 to ports > 1024 (Server responds to client's control port)
    FTP server's ports > 1024 from anywhere (Client initiates data connection to random port specified by server)
    FTP server's ports > 1024 to remote ports > 1024 (Server sends ACKs (and data) to client's data port)



    In step 1, the client contacts the server on the command port and issues the PASV command. The server then replies in step 2 with PORT 2024, telling the client which port it is listening to for the data connection. In step 3 the client then initiates the data connection from its data port to the specified server data port. Finally, the server sends back an ACK in step 4 to the client's data port.

    While passive mode FTP solves many of the problems from the client side, it opens up a whole range of problems on the server side. The biggest issue is the need to allow any remote connection to high numbered ports on the server. Fortunately, many FTP daemons, including the popular WU-FTPD allow the administrator to specify a range of ports which the FTP server will use. See Appendix 1 for more information.

    The second issue involves supporting and troubleshooting clients which do (or do not) support passive mode. As an example, the command line FTP utility provided with Solaris does not support passive mode, necessitating a third-party FTP client, such as ncftp.

    With the massive popularity of the World Wide Web, many people prefer to use their web browser as an FTP client. Most browsers only support passive mode when accessing ftp:// URLs. This can either be good or bad depending on what the servers and firewalls are configured to support.



    Passive FTP Example
    Below is an actual example of a passive FTP session. The only things that have been changed are the server names, IP addresses, and user names. In this example an FTP session is initiated from testbox1.slacksite.com (192.168.150.80), a linux box running the standard FTP command line client, to testbox2.slacksite.com (192.168.150.90), a linux box running ProFTPd 1.2.2RC2. The debugging (-d) flag is used with the FTP client to show what is going on behind the scenes. Everything in red is the debugging output which shows the actual FTP commands being sent to the server and the responses generated from those commands. Normal server output is shown in black, and user input is in bold.

    Notice the difference in the PORT command in this example as opposed to the active FTP example. Here, we see a port being opened on the server (192.168.150.90) system, rather than the client. See the discussion about the format of the PORT command above, in the Active FTP Example section.

    testbox1: {/home/p-t/slacker/public_html} % ftp -d testbox2
    Connected to testbox2.slacksite.com.
    220 testbox2.slacksite.com FTP server ready.
    Name (testbox2:slacker): slacker
    ---> USER slacker
    331 Password required for slacker.
    Password: TmpPass
    ---> PASS XXXX
    230 User slacker logged in.
    ---> SYST
    215 UNIX Type: L8
    Remote system type is UNIX.
    Using binary mode to transfer files.
    ftp> passive
    Passive mode on.
    ftp> ls
    ftp: setsockopt (ignored): Permission denied
    ---> PASV
    227 Entering Passive Mode (192,168,150,90,195,149).
    ---> LIST
    150 Opening ASCII mode data connection for file list
    drwx------ 3 slacker users 104 Jul 27 01:45 public_html
    226 Transfer complete.
    ftp> quit
    ---> QUIT
    221 Goodbye.


    Summary
    The following chart should help admins remember how each FTP mode works:

    Active FTP :
    command : client >1024 -> server 21
    data : client >1024 <- server 20

    Passive FTP :
    command : client >1024 -> server 21
    data : client >1024 -> server >1024

    • A quick summary of the pros and cons of active vs. passive FTP is

    • Active FTP is beneficial to the FTP server admin, but detrimental to the client side admin. The FTP server attempts to make connections to random high ports on the client, which would almost certainly be blocked by a firewall on the client side. Passive FTP is beneficial to the client, but detrimental to the FTP server admin. The client will make both connections to the server, but one of them will be to a random high port, which would almost certainly be blocked by a firewall on the server side.

    • there is somewhat of a compromise. Since admins running FTP servers will need to make their servers accessible to the greatest number of clients, they will almost certainly need to support passive FTP. The exposure of high level ports on the server can be minimized by specifying a limited port range for the FTP server to use. Thus, everything except for this range of ports can be firewalled on the server side. While this doesn't eliminate all risk to the server, it decreases it tremendously.

FTP

More about FTP

Time and mind needed so keep trying . So first of all , find out if your IP(Internet Protocol) is static (not changing) or dynamic (change every time you log in).To check (do ) first consider the fact if you have a dial up modem. If you do, chances are about 99% out of 100% that your IP is dynamic. To make it static, just go to place like HTTP://WWW.MYFTP.ORG/ to register for a static IP address.

Then you need to get your IP. This can be
Going to Start -> Run -> winipcfg or www.ask.com and asking 'What is my IP?

After doing so, you'll need to download an FTP server client. I'd recommend G6 FTP server, Serv-U FTP or Bulletproof v2.15 all three of which are extremely reliable , and the norm of the FTP world.
You can download from www.liaokai.com search the above software at here upgrade version available.

Step by Step instruction for G6 FTP server

  • Setup -> General
  • type in your port # (default is 21)(recommend something unique or something a bit larger(ex:3069).This sets the amount of simultaneous maximu users on your sever at once performing actions- the more on at once , the slower the connection ).
  • Then
  • Launch with Windows
  • Activate FTP server on Start up
  • Put into tray on start up
  • Allow multiple instances
  • Show “ Loading....” Status at Start up
  • Scan drives at start up
  • Confirm Exit.


You can do what you want with these, as they are pretty self explanatory. The scan drive feature is nice, as is the 2nd and the last option.

  • From here, click the 'options' text on the left column.

To protect your server, you should check 'login check' and 'password check', 'Show relative path (a must!)', and any other options you feel you'll need.

  • After doing so, click the 'advanced' text in the left column. You should then leave the buffer size on the default (unless of course you know what you're doing ), and then allow the type of ftp you want.

Uploading and downloading is usually good, but it's up to you if you want to allow uploads and/or downloads. For the server priority, that will determine how much conventional memory will be used and how much 'effort' will go into making your server run smoothly.

  • Anti-hammering is also good, as it prevents people from slowing down your speed. From here, click 'Log Options' from the left column. If you would like to see and record every single command and clutter up your screen, leave the defaults.

But, if you would like to see what is going on with the lowest possible space taken, click 'Screen' in the top column. You should then check off 'Log successful logins', and all of the options in the client directry, except 'Log directory changes'. After doing so, click 'Ok' in the bottom left corner.

You will then have to go into 'Setup -> User Accounts' (or ctrl & u). From here, you should click on the right most column, and right click. Choose 'Add', and choose the username(s) you would like people to have access to.

  • After giving a name (ex: themoonlanding), you will have to give them a set password in the bottom column (ex: wasfaked). For the 'Home IP' directory, (if you registered with a static server, check 'All IP Homes'. If your IP is static by default, choose your IP from the list. You will then have to right click in the very center column, and choose 'Add'.

  • From here, you will have to set the directory you want the people to have access to. After choosing the directory, I suggest you choose the options 'Read', 'List', and 'Subdirs', unless of course you know what you're doing . After doing so, make an 'upload' folder in the directory, and choose to 'add' this folder seperately to the center column. Choose 'write', 'append', 'make', 'list', and 'subdirs'. This will allow them to upload only to specific folders (your upload folder).

  • Now click on 'Miscellaneous' from the left column. Choose 'enable account', your time-out (how long it takes for people to remain idle before you automatically kick them off), the maximum number of users for this name, the maximum number of connections allowed simultaneously for one ip address, show relative path (a must!), and any other things at the bottom you'd like to have. Now click 'Ok'.
**Requested**


  • From this main menu, click the little boxing glove icon in the top corner, and right click and unchoose the hit-o-meter for both uploads and downloads (with this you can monitor IP activity). Now click the lightning bolt, and your server is now up and running.

    Post your ftp info, like this:

-> 213.10.93.141 (or something else, such as: 'f*p://example.getmyip.com')

-> User: *** (The username of the client)

-> Pass: *** (The password)

-> Port: *** (The port number you chose)

So make a FTP and join the FTP section


Listing The Contents Of A Ftp:

  • Listing the content of a FTP is very simple.
You will need FTP Content Maker, which can be downloaded from here:
ht*p://www.etplanet.com/download/application/FTP%20Content%20Maker%201.02.zip
    1. Put in the IP of the server. Do not put "ftp://" or a "/" because it will not work if you do so.
    2. Put in the port. If the port is the default number, 21, you do not have to enter it.
    3. Put in the username and password in the appropriate fields. If the login is anonymous, you do not have to enter it.
    4. If you want to list a specific directory of the FTP, place it in the directory field. Otherwise, do not enter anything in the directory field.
    5. Click "Take the List!"
    6. After the list has been taken, click the UBB output tab, and copy and paste to wherever you want it.


    • If FTP Content Maker is not working, it is probably because the server does not utilize Serv-U Software.

    • If you get this error message:
    StatusCode = 550
    LastResponse was : 'Unable to open local file test-ftp'
    Error = 550 (Unable to open local file test-ftp)
    Error = Unable to open local file test-ftp = 550
    Close and restart FTP Content Maker, then try again.




    Error messages:

    • 110 Restart marker reply. In this case, the text is exact and not left to the particular implementation; it must read: MARK yyyy = mmmm Where yyyy is User-process data stream marker, and mmmm server's equivalent marker (note the spaces between markers and "=").
    • 120 Service ready in nnn minutes
    • 125 Data connection already open; transfer starting.
    • 150 File status okay; about to open data connection.
    • 200 Command okay.
    • 202 Command not implemented, superfluous at this site.
    • 211 System status, or system help reply.
    • 212 Directory status.
    • 213 File status.
    • 214 Help message. On how to use the server or the meaning of a particular non-standard command. This reply is useful only to the human user.
    • 215 NAME system type. Where NAME is an official system name from the list in the Assigned Numbers document.
    • 220 Service ready for new user.
    • 221 Service closing control connection. Logged out if appropriate.
    • 225 Data connection open; no transfer in progress.
    • 226 Closing data connection. Requested file action successful (for example, file transfer or file abort).
    • 227 Entering Passive Mode (h1,h2,h3,h4,p1,p2).
    • 230 User logged in, proceed.
    • 250 Requested file action okay, completed.
    • 257 "PATHNAME" created.
    • 331 User name okay, need password.
    • 332 Need account for login.
    • 350 Requested file action pending further information.
    • 421 Too many users logged to the same account
    • 425 Can't open data connection.
    • 426 Connection closed; transfer aborted.
    • 450 Requested file action not taken. File unavailable (e.g., file busy).
    • 451 Requested action aborted: local error in processing.
    • 452 Requested action not taken. Insufficient storage space in system.
    • 500 Syntax error, command unrecognized. This may include errors such as command line too long.
    • 501 Syntax error in parameters or arguments.
    • 502 Command not implemented.
    • 503 Bad sequence of commands.
    • 504 Command not implemented for that parameter.
    • 530 Not logged in.
    • 532 Need account for storing files.
    • 550 Requested action not taken. File unavailable (e.g., file not found, no access).
    • 551 Requested action aborted: page type unknown.
    • 552 Requested file action aborted. Exceeded storage allocation (for current directory or data set).
    • 553 Requested action not taken. File name not allowed.

    Thursday

    Internet Fact

    Internet Fact

      An Internet user has access to a wide variety of services like ,Electronic mail,file transfer etc. No one know exactly how many computers are connected to the Internet. It is certain,however, that these number in the millions. No one is in the charge of the Internet. There are organizations which develop technical aspects of this network and set standards for creating application on it, but no governing body is in control. The Internet backbone, through which Internet traffic flows is owned by private companies.
      All computers on the Internet communicate with one another using the Transmission control Protocol/Internet Protocol suite,abbreviated to TCP/IP. Computers on the Internet use a Client/server architecture. This means that the remote server machine provides files and services to the user's local client machine. The Internet consists primarily of a variety of access protocols. Many of these protocols feature programs that allow users to search for and retrieve material made available by the protocol.


      Here The Components Of The Internet


    • The World Wide Web (abbreviated as the WEB or WWW) is a system of Internet severs that supports hypertext to access several Internet protocols on a single interface. Almost every protocol type available on the Internet is accessible on the web like (e-mail,FTP,telnet,Usenet news etc).
    • The world wide web has its own protocol Ex : Hyper Text Transfer Protocol, or HTTP. The world wide web provides a single interface for accessing all these protocols. The web is the fastest -growing components of the Internet.
    • The operation of the web relies primarily on hypertext as its means of information retrieval. HyperText is a document containing words that connect to other documents. These words are called links and are selectable by the user. A single hypertext document can contain links to many documents. In the context of the web,words or graphics may serve as links to other documents,images, video, and sound. links may or may not follow a logical path, as each connection is programmed by the creator of the source document.
    • Producing hypertext for the web is accomplished by creating documents with a language called HyperText Markup language,or HTML. With HTML,tags are placed within the text to accomplish formatting,visual features such as font size, italic and bold, and the creation of hypertext link.
    • The world wide web consists of files called pager of home pages, containing links to documents and resources throughout the internet.
    • The web provides a vast array of experiences including multimedia presentations,real time collaboration,interactive pages, radio and television broadcasts, and the automatic “push” of information to a client computer.
    • Programming languages such as Java,JavaScript,Visual Basic,Cold Fusion And XML are extending the capabilities of the web. A growing amount of information on the web is sever dynamically form content stored in database. The web is therefore not a fixed entity. But one that is in a constant state of development and flux.





    • E-MAIL
    • Electronic mail, or e-mail, allows computer users locally and worldwide to exchange messages. Each user of e-mail has a mailbox address to which messages are sent. Messages sent through e-mail can arrive within a matter of seconds.
    • A powerful aspect of e-mail is the option to send electronic files to a person's e-mail address. Non-ASCII files, known as binary files, may be attached to e-mail messages. These files are referred to as MIME attachments.MIME stands for Multimedia Internet Mail Extension, and was developed to help e-mail software handle a variety of file types. For example, a document created in Microsoft Word can be attached to an e-mail message and retrieved by the recipient with the appropriate e-mail program. Many e-mail programs, including Eudora, Netscape Messenger, and Microsoft Outlook, offer the ability to read files written in HTML, which is itself a MIME type.
    • TELNET
    • Telnet is a program that allows you to log into computers on the Internet and use online databases, library catalogs, chat services, and more. There are no graphics in Telnet sessions, just text. To Telnet to a computer, you must know its address. This can consist of words (LOCIS.LOC.GOV) or numbers (140.147.254.3). Some services require you to connect to a specific port on the remote computer. In this case, type the port number after the Internet address. Example: telnet nri.reston.va.us 185.
    • Telnet is available on the World Wide Web. Probably the most common Web-based resources available through Telnet have been library catalogs, though most catalogs have since migrated to the Web. A link to a Telnet resource may look like any other link, but it will launch a Telnet session to make the connection. A Telnet program must be installed on your local computer and configured to your Web browser in order to work.
    • With the increasing popularity of the Web, Telnet has become less frequently used as a means of access to information on the Internet.
    • FTP
    • FTP stands for File Transfer Protocol. This is both a program and the method used to transfer files between computers. Anonymous FTP is an option that allows users to transfer files from thousands of host computers on the Internet to their personal computer account. FTP sites contain books, articles, software, games, images, sounds, multimedia, course work, data sets, and more.
    • If your computer is directly connected to the Internet via an Ethernet cable, you can use one of several PC software programs, such as WS_FTP for Windows, to conduct a file transfer.
    • FTP transfers can be performed on the World Wide Web without the need for special software. In this case, the Web browser will suffice. Whenever you download software from a Web site to your local machine, you are using FTP. You can also retrieve FTP files via search engines such as Ftp Find, located at /HTTP://WWW.FTPFIND.COM/. This option is easiest because you do not need to know FTP program commands.
    • E-MAIL DISCUSSION GROUPS
    • One of the benefits of the Internet is the opportunity it offers to people worldwide to communicate via e-mail. The Internet is home to a large community of individuals who carry out active discussions organized around topic-oriented forums distributed by e-mail. These are administered by software programs. Probably the most common program is the listserv.
    • A great variety of topics are covered by listservs, many of them academic in nature. When you subscribe to a listserv, messages from other subscribers are automatically sent to your electronic mailbox. You subscribe to a listserv by sending an e-mail message to a computer program called a listserver. Listservers are located on computer networks throughout the world. This program handles subscription information and distributes messages to and from subscribers. You must have a e-mail account to participate in a listserv discussion group. Visit Tile.net at /HTTP://TILE.NET/ to see an example of a site that offers a searchablecollection of e-mail discussion groups.
    • Majordomo and Listproc are two other programs that administer e-mail discussion groups. The commands for subscribing to and managing your list memberships are similar to those of listserv.
    • USENET NEWS
    • Usenet News is a global electronic bulletin board system in which millions of computer users exchange information on a vast range of topics. The major difference between Usenet News and e-mail discussion groups is the fact that Usenet messages are stored on central computers, and users must connect to these computers to read or download the messages posted to these groups. This is distinct from e-mail distribution, in which messages arrive in the electronic mailboxes of each list member.
    • Usenet itself is a set of machines that exchanges messages, or articles, from Usenet discussion forums, called newsgroups. Usenet administrators control their own sites, and decide which (if any) newsgroups to sponsor and which remote newsgroups to allow into the system.
    • There are thousands of Usenet newsgroups in existence. While many are academic in nature, numerous newsgroups are organized around recreational topics. Much serious computer-related work takes place in Usenet discussions. A small number of e-mail discussion groups also exist as Usenet newsgroups.
    • The Usenet news feed can be read by a variety of newsreader software programs. For example, the Netscape suite comes with a newsreader program called Messenger. Newsreaders are also available as standalone products.
    • FAQ, RFC, FYI
    • FAQ stands for Frequently Asked Questions. These are periodic postings to Usenet newsgroups that contain a wealth of information related to the topic of the newsgroup. Many FAQs are quite extensive. FAQs are available by subscribing to individual Usenet newsgroups. A Web-based collection of FAQ resources has been collected by The Internet FAQ Consortium and is available at HTTP://WWW.FAQS.ORG/.
    • RFC stands for Request for Comments. These are documents created by and distributed to the Internet community to help define the nuts and bolts of the Internet. They contain both technical specifications and general information.
    • FYI stands for For Your Information. These notes are a subset of RFCs and contain information of interest to new Internet users.
    • Links to indexes of all three of these information resources are available on the University Libraries Web site at /http://library.albany.edu/reference/faqs.html.
    • CHAT & INSTANT MESSENGING
    • Chat programs allow users on the Internet to communicate with each other by typing in real time. They are sometimes included as a feature of a Web site, where users can log into the "chat room" to exchange comments and information about the topics addressed on the site. Chat may take other, more wide-ranging forms. For example, America Online is well known for sponsoring a number of topical chat rooms.
    • Internet Relay Chat (IRC) is a service through which participants can communicate to each other on hundreds of channels. These channels are usually based on specific topics. While many topics are frivolous, substantive conversations are also taking place. To access IRC, you must use an IRC software program.
    • A variation of chat is the phenomenon of instant messenging. With instant messenging, a user on the Web can contact another user currently logged in and type a conversation. Most famous is America Online's Instant Messenger. ICQ, MSN and Yahoo are other commonly-used chat programs.

    • Other types of real-time communication are addressed in the tutorial Understanding the World Wide Web.
    • MUD/MUSH/MOO/MUCK/DUM/MUSE
    • MUD stands for Multi User Dimension. MUDs, and their variations listed above, are multi-user virtual reality games based on simulated worlds. Traditionally text based, graphical MUDs now exist. There are MUDs of all kinds on the Internet, and many can be joined free of charge. For more information, read one of the FAQs devoted to MUDs available at the FAQ site at


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