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Jorgensen.org.uk

Afghan law, rape and adultery...

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My last message on twitter/facebook/identica caused a little bit of a stir with some of you.  It turns out that some of you (you know who you are) were offended by it :-( That was not my intention - if it caused offence, please accept my apologies.

But before you leave, let me explain the context and what I meant....

Last Updated on Saturday, 03 December 2011 01:14 Read more...
 

NT Password Recovery - PXE booting

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Recently we had to "break into" one of our windows boxes, and ended up using the "Offline NT Password & Registry" Editor from http://www.pogostick.net/~pnh/ntpasswd/.  It appears to be an excellent tool - but there was no information on how to get that to PXE boot.  This blog entry should help with PXE booting it.

You will need:

  • A DHCP Server
  • A TFTP Server 
  • The CD image
  • The PC on which you want to change the passwords

Most DHCP servers will work. For ISC DHCPd the configuration needs to be amended to include:

next-server 10.1.111.8; # IP address of TFTP server 

Even Windows DHCP server can be used here.

The TFTP server (which can be the same server as the DHCP server), serves out a directory tree - in our case "/srv/tftp" in which the CD contents needs to be available. This can be done by simply mounting it. We put the CD image in /srv/tftp/cd110511.iso and mounted it on /srv/tftp/cd110511 using an fstab entry: 

/srv/tftp/cd110511.iso /srv/tftp/cd110511 auto loop 0 0

And the corresponding pxe boot menu entry looks like this:

label win-pwreset
menu label Windows Password Reset
menu passwd soopersekrit
kernel cd110511/vmlinuz
initrd cd110511/initrd.cgz,cd110511/scsi.cgz

And voila!

 

Last Updated on Monday, 10 October 2011 12:39
 

iPhone4 Internet Tethering in Debian

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As I recently got an iPhone4 for work, I've been trying to make the best use of it - it already handles the instant messaging (mostly Skype), Nagios alerts (an XMPP client) and obviously email. And sometimes phone calls, microphone allowing. But I was still missing (at least) one thing that I had working on other phones: tethering.

As it turns out, others have had similar desires and come up with solutions. By now, the things needed for this is available in Debian Squeeze - the "test" release of Debian (which happens to be rock-stable), so installing the required bits is as easy as installing anything else:

apt-get install ipheth-utils 

and switch on "Internet Tethering" on the iPhone. Then plug the phone into the USB port. The combination of linux kernel, ipheth kernel module (which is now in the mainline kernel, so no need to install ipheth-dkms), Network Manager and DHCP takes care of the rest :-)

Allegedly it is also possible to do over bluetooth, but I have not tried that yet. The phone tends to drain its battery within 36 hours, so the cable needs to be at hand anyway.

Note: Since this will send your PC's network traffic through the iPhone, additional data charges may apply. Buyer beware. Don't blame me.

Last Updated on Saturday, 15 January 2011 10:38
 

Phone Hacking!?

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The recent phone hacking scandal has been attracting a lot of news recently. And in my opinion: for all the wrong reasons:

  • Calling it "hacking" is very misleading.. An insult to hackers all over the world.  Anybody could have done the same thing the journalist did.  We just had ethics.
  • Blaming the journalists is almost missing the point. When you get your house broken into, blaming the burglars is OK. But if you left both doors and windows wide open, then you can't accuse the burglars of being master criminals.
Last Updated on Tuesday, 19 July 2011 09:05 Read more...
 

Activating an iPhone4 using Debian. Not.

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Recently I got a new phone for/from work: an iPhone4 Tongue out - although it is a nice piece of hardware, it immediately presented me with a problem: It has system requirements which are over the top:

Requirements: Minimum wireless service plan may be required to activate iPhone features, including iPod features * Mac or PC with USB 2.0 * Mac OS X v10.5.8 or later, Windows 7, Windows Vista, or Windows XP Home or Professional (SP3) * iTunes 9.2 or later required for some features (free download from www.itunes.com/download) * iTunes Store account * Internet access

After charging the phone, the truth comes out: Until it has been activated through iTunes, it will only do emergency calls. So "some features" really is "99.99% of use cases". Thanks a lot Apple.  Or to use their logic: "Some times I will no longer trust Apple".

It turns out that you need a lot more than just the phone, a charger and a phone contract before you can even consider using this thing:

  • iPhone4 needs activation
  • activation requires iTunes 9.2 or later
  • iTunes requires Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP or Mac OS
  • iTunes requires an iTunes Store Account
  • a iTunes Store Account requires a valid credit card (even if you are not buying anything!!)
  • using the phone constitutes acceptance of the software agreement, warranty and third-party terms (all of which are inside the box, unaccessible until after you've bought it and opened it).

I am quite relieved that I did not purchase this thing for myself - my personal phone will never be an iPhone.  But it still left me with the problem of how to activate the phone, since I run Debian GNU/Linux both at home and at work...

Last Updated on Monday, 10 January 2011 12:08 Read more...
 
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