Catching up with Wietse Venema, creator of Postfix and TCP Wrapper, Feb 8 2008
Wietse: I have been finishing things, so that I can start work on new projects. After a major documentation rewrite for the Postfix mail system, I finished the manuscript for a book on computer forensic analysis with Dan Farmer. When I finish something, I normally start reading everything that I can lay my hands on and then inspiration comes.
Wietse: It has been fairly typical here in southern New York state. We dig ourselves out from the snow a few times in January and February.
Once the snow is gone in March, we spend quality time walking up a hill or riding a bike. Many several former railroads are/were converted into trails, and riding them is fun. Unlike Europe, where I grew up, the roads in southern New York state are not really safe for riding a bicycle.
Linuxsecurity.com: You have a suite of tools available on your website. Any new ones coming out that address basic fundamental security practices that still aren't followed or are you going to add any new functionality to your existing programs?
Linuxsecurity.com: Postfix is a really good Mail Transport Agent (MTA), I've been using it for a long time and I set it up for someone any chance I get. Why did you decide to write a new MTA instead of scaling down an existing MTA? :-)
Writing a new mail system from scratch was a change from previous projects. Normally I would retrofit security features almost invisibly, either by replacing an existing server such as portmap by a hardened version that was 100% compatible, or by adding a very thin layer such as tcp_wrappers. In the case of the Postfix mail system, there was no way that the changes could be made in an invisible manner.
Wietse: We just finished a manuscript for a book on computer forensic analysis that we hope will come out this year. In this book we write about things that we learned after we released the TCT. For some experiments we used the TCT, and for other measurements we wrote a few new tools. When this book is published I will be happy to turn my attention to other projects.
Sharing Software, IBM to Release Mail Program Blueprint, Feb 8 2008
dding momentum to the open-source movement for the free sharing of software, IBM plans Monday to make available the original programmer's instructions for a new mail program that can be used to store and forward e-mail messages with a high level of security.
Netscape to Release New Browser Engine to Developers
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Salon.com Technology | How Big Blue fell for Linux, Feb 8 2008
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The magazines may not make good marketing material right now. Collab.net, the brainchild of open-source star Brian Behlendorf,* aims to make a business out of, he says, "distilling the principles of open source." But at least half of the covers of these new-economy bibles are screaming dire, boldface warnings about the current dot-com meltdown, including Wall Street's sharp turn away from Linux-related stocks in the spring and summer.
It's a good thing the office tunes are soothing, because jangled nerves are suddenly everywhere in that strange land where free software and dot-com start-ups mix. In the summer of 1999, Red Hat's IPO, occurring right in the middle of a packed LinuxWorld convention, sent attendees into a dither of delight. But in mid-August, no less an authority than the New York Times takes advantage of another LinuxWorld convention to declaim about how Wall Street is souring on Linux.
And yet, those who take heart in a one-day surge are just as guilty of overeagerness. Both cynics and Pollyannas are like marks suckered into a New York huckster's game of three-card monte. While they busily stare, striving to follow the movements of the dealer's hand, they never notice that Times Square around them is meanwhile being transformed from pimp heaven into Disneyland. Sure, companies in the business of selling Linux may have questionable prospects -- but the open-source revolution is still in full effect, rebuilding the software industry from top to bottom, forcing everyone to adapt.
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Please choose a Postfix Download Site, Feb 8 2008
USA, NY, New York
USA, NY, New York
USA, NY, New York
Please choose a Postfix Web Site, Feb 8 2008
USA, NH, New Durham
USA, NY, New York
USA, NY, New York
New Zealand, Auckland
Venema aims to make network software safe, Feb 8 2008
Venema's a good man for the job. He's worked for over a decade on a broad range of "software whose existence you don't notice because it works well": network security, inter-company financial transactions, terminal emulation, and so on. "My software rarely fails ... My claim to fame is largely based on the low incidence of error" in the infrastructural applications he's written. Now he's moved permanently to the "beautiful landscape" of central New York state from his native Netherlands to dedicate a year to VMailer.
Away from the keyboard, Venema and his wife Annita are looking forward to replacing the bicycles they sold when they moved. This will give them a chance to explore the North Country Trailway, which runs near their new home. "This is continent collision zone, with lots of weird geology. It's quite a change from the Netherlands, which is all flat and which has almost no trees."
Prentice Hall co-authors of Java Design Pete Coad, Mark Mayfield, and Jon Kern are talking in our new forum. Join them!
Postfix in the Press, Feb 8 2008
John Markoff: "Sharing Software, IBM to Release Mail Program Blueprint". New York Times, December 1998.
This is the New York Times article that put Open Source on the radar of IBM CEO Lou Gerstner. He called around, found that IBM had no open source strategy, and tasked people to come up with one.
The Standard: Behind the Big Blue Wall, Feb 8 2008
Just over two years ago, Nick Donofrio, senior vice president for technology at IBM (IBM), received a surprise phone call from his boss, Louis Gerstner. The company's CEO had just read a New York Times article about an IBM developer who had released an e-mail program called SecureMailer, written in open-source code - freely distributed software that could be modified by anyone. Though he didn't phrase it this way, Gerstner was essentially calling to ask, "What the hell's going on here?"
* Sun, Microsoft Servers Vulnerable to New Worm