KLUG Weekly Meeting Notes

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

 

myth TV

Presented by Bruce Smith

http://www.mythtv.org/
mythTV is a GPL licensed suite of programs that allow you

to build the mythical home media convergence box on your
own using Open Source software and operating systems. There
are several personal video recorder PVR systems available.
TiVo is a well known subscription PVR appliance. There were
some comparisons made with TiVo during the presentation.

This link describes the features and function of myth TV.
To see how powerful this PVR system is, look at this URL:
http://www.mythtv.org/docs/mythtv-HOWTO-1.html#ss1.1

Bruce Smith has a very functional PVR system installed in his
home. He has a backend myth server that does the recording
and two frontend myth boxes that are connected to his TV’s.
He has an analog signal cable and a digital cable converter

box connected to two PVR150 PC cards. The frontend boxes
just plug into the home LAN and his televisions. These boxes
replace remote cable converters and function the same.


You could configure your system with a single box. There are
myth TV drivers available from NVIDIA for their graphics
cards. The video signal quality looked great.

The myth TV backend box Bruce is using has a 300 Gb hard
drive. His system gobbles up 2 Gb of hard drive space per

hour of recording. That does give him 150 hours of stored
video programming. He can add more hard drive space easily
if he needs it!

The ease of configuring the myth TV backend server was
demonstrated . Marking what shows you want to record
from a GUI menu is easy. The frontend boxes have a user
friendly GUI interface for playback too.

What operating system is Bruce using on these boxes? Fedora

The myth TV user’s mailing list is the place to find out the
functional hardware and operating system recommendations.
http://www.mythtv.org/mailman/listinfo/mythtv-users/

(17 Linux Enthusiasts Attending)

 

mythTV Offers Video Recording, Games, and
Music & Image Applications Posted by Picasa

 

Hauppauge PVR150 Personal Video Recorder
PC Card Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

 

GPG – DEMONSTRATION OF GPG FRONTENDS

Presented by Dirk Bartley!

With two SVGA projectors, a detailed outline, and the details on
four GPG e-mail encryption and authentication… Dirk Bartley
used the KLUG LTSP boxes, creating a table wide network (TWN)
for a multiple platform network, to show us how it all works.

Dirk Bartley demonstrated GPG, the Gnu Privacy Guard project.
This presentation covered the concepts and use of GPG to encrypt
attached emails as well as to prove that the email was sent from

the possessor of the appropriate private key. The objective was to
familiarize the audience with using GPG from open email clients
as well as Microsoft Outlook.

Dirk had several points he wanted to emphasize in review of the
initial GPG presentation. He clearly described the difference
and purpose of encryption and signing with signatures! He also
wanted to add a big picture usage reference.

-----------------
Why should I encrypt my mail? I'm not doing anything illegal!
You should encrypt your e-mail for the same reason that you don't
write all of your correspondence on the back of a post card. E-mail
is actually far less secure than the postal system. With the post

office, you at least put your letter inside an envelope to hide it
from casual snooping. Take a look at the header area of any e-mail
message that you receive and you will see that it has passed through
a number of nodes on its way to you. Every one of these nodes presents
the opportunity for snooping. Encryption in no way should imply illegal
activity. It is simply intended to keep personal thoughts personal.

Crime? If you are not a politician, research scientist, investor,
CEO, lawyer, celebrity, libertarian in a repressive society,
investor, or person having too much fun, and you do not send
e-mail about your private sex life, financial/political/legal/scientific
plans, or gossip then maybe you don't need PGP, but at least realize
that privacy has nothing to do with crime and is in fact what keeps
the world from falling apart. Besides, PGP is FUN.
You never had a secret decoder ring? Boo!
-Xenon (Copyright 1993, Xenon)
http://sites.inka.de/tesla/gpgrelay.html

-----------------

DEMO PERSONALITY CLIENT GPG FRONTEND
Theodore Thunder Thunderbird Enigmail
Kevin Keller Kmail KGPG
Edgar Evans Evolution GNU Privacy Assistant
Owen Outdone Outlook GPG Relay

The latest version of Enigmail is 0.93.0, working with Thunderbird 1.0.x
and Mozilla 1.7.x. Enigmail is an extension to the mail client of
Mozilla / Netscape and Mozilla Thunderbird which allows users to access
the authentication and encryption features provided by GnuPG (see
screenshots). Enigmail is open source and dually-licensed under the GNU
General Public License and the Mozilla Public License.
http://enigmail.mozdev.org/

KGPG is a simple, free, open source KDE frontend for GPG with Kmail.
http://developer.kde.org/~kgpg/

GnuPG stands for GNU Privacy Guard and is GNU's tool for secure
communication and data storage. It can be used to encrypt data and to
create digital signatures. It includes an advanced key management
facility and is compliant with the proposed OpenPGP Internet standard
as described in RFC 2440. As such, it is aimed to be compatible with

PGP from NAI, Inc.
http://www.gnupg.org/(en)/related_software/gpa/index.html

GPGrelay is, as indicated by its name a local relaying server.
It works completely transparent for your Email-Client as well as for
the remote Server. Now, if you want to send emails encrypted, GPGrelay
encrypts them and sends the encrypted mail to the SMTP-Server.
If you receive an encrypted mail, GPGrelay does the decryption for you –
so your Email-Client never sees any encrypted mails, which is quite a

nice feature when your Email-Client (like Outlook Express) is not capable
of handling those mails.
http://sites.inka.de/tesla/gpgrelay.html


(20 Linux Enthusiasts Attending)

 

Dirk Bartley Demonstrated Four GNU Privacy
Guard E-Mail Frontends! Posted by Picasa

 

Dirk Demonstrated GNU Privacy Guard on a
Windows XP Box and on a Linux Box too. Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

 

GPG - SECURITY AND PRIVACY (ACT 1 OF 2)

Graciously Presented by Dirk Bartley!

Dirk’s Slide Presentation on GPG - Act 1: (43 slides)
ftp://kalamazoolinux.org/pub/pdf/gpg.pdf

Dirk Bartley explained GPG, the Gnu Privacy Guard project.
This is an Open Source data encryption software project.
http://www.gnupg.org

The presentation covered the concepts and use of GPG to
encrypt and digitally sign files. The objective was to
familiarize the attendees with using GPG from basic concept
to the command line interface. He started out by covering
the basics from his previous encryption related KLUG
presentations. He has already covered SSH, Kerberos, & SSL!
We heard about ciphers, keys, cryptoanalysis, and algorithims.
He answered questions throughout the presentation and worked

hard to help those that were trying to grasp the concepts.

Dirk talked about symmetric and asymmetric encryption and
decryption, data signing, asymmetric key generation, key
management, and even key parties. He discussed various
related authentication and security considerations.

The second half of Dirk’s GPG presentation (next week) will
cover the concepts and use to encrypt attached e-mails.

Open Source GNU Privacy Guard is distributed by the Free
Software Foundation. Richard Stallman founded the GNU
Project in 1984.
http://www.gnu.org/

[From the GnuPG FAQ page]
GnuPG stands for GNU Privacy Guard and is GNU's tool for
secure communication and data storage. It can be used to

encrypt data and to create digital signatures. It includes
an advanced key management facility and is compliant with
the proposed OpenPGP Internet standard as described in
RFC 2440. As such, it is aimed to be compatible with PGP.
http://www.gnupg.org/(en)/documentation/faqs.html

Some people say you only need encryption if you have something
to hide. Others say that you are entitled to privacy and to be
secure in your personal computer originated communication.

For More Information About Encryption:
Privacy, Security, Crypto, & Surveillance
"EFF Top 12 Ways to Protect Your Online Privacy"
http://www.eff.org/Privacy/

We had a VIP in attendance tonight. Dirk’s father, retired WMU
Communications Professor Lynn Bartley, witnessed his son’s
passion for the Linux OS, Open Source software, and teaching

his knowledge to others. Dirk served dutifully as KLUG Chair
for two terms of office.

(20 Linux Enthusiasts Attending)

 

How E-Mail Encryption Works, Using Signed Public
Keys, is "Not Easy to Wrap Your Head Around!" Posted by Picasa

 

Dirk Bartley Presents GNU Privacy Guard (GPG) Posted by Picasa

 

GNU PRIVACY GUARD Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

 

XMPP - AKA JABBER - WITH JIVE

Presented by Adam Tauno Williams

Adam might post his presentation notes in the near future:
http://kalamazoolinux.org/presentations

Extensible Messaging Presence Protocol (XMPP)

Setting up an instant messaging service for your company or
organization is possible with Open Source XMPP software.

Adam Tauno Williams described how to install and configure
an XMPP server. He gave us general terminology and told
us how XMPP services work. Rather than have employees
using an outside service, Jive allows communication to be
limited to internal use only and provides an admin audit trail.
No advertising., no IM exploits, no outlaw broadcasts, no
worries… if you install your own secure IM service.

Adam gave us the background of XMPP, told us about its
evolution, and described the status of development projects.
He told us about the Jabber Foundation and Jive Software.
Open Source XMPP software is really useful for near real
time organizational communication.

Having presented once before on implementing XMPP 'instant
messaging' using the Jabberd2 server, this time Adam covered the
JIVE XMPP server. JIVE is a formerly commercial XMPP server,
written in Java, that has now been released as Open Source. JIVE
provides solid performance and stability along with its easy
installation and elegant administration interface. JIVE provides
rosters, message logging, LDAP authentication, and the ability to
use any JDBC available database.
http://www.jivesoftware.org/

Jabber is best known as "the Linux of instant messaging" -- an
open, secure, ad-free alternative to consumer IM services like AIM,
ICQ, MSN, and Yahoo (see the IM quickstart). Under the hood,
Jabber is a set of streaming XML protocols and technologies that
enable any two entities on the Internet to exchange messages,
presence, and other structured information in near real time.
Jabber technologies offer several key advantages
http://www.jabber.org/

Adam’s workplace uses Exodus as their Windows IM client.
Exodus is a clean, lightweight Jabber instant messaging client for
Windows. It supports messages, chat, group chat and file transfers.
If you would like your sessions to be secure and encrypted, you can
select SSL support.
http://exodus.jabberstudio.org/

Some admins use IM for their help desk contact system. Using the
Multiple User Chat (MUC) Room feature of Jive can accomplish that.
Adam mentioned that he felt users give better problem descriptions
if they use an IM and have to think about what they write. Users

can see if the/a help desk technician is available to help them.
Adam mentioned that the receptionist can look at her list and know
if someone is present so she can put a telephone call through.

Adam answered specific questions throughout the presentation and
held a more in depth discussion of a few configuration issues at
the end of his session.

(14 Linux Enthusiasts Attending)

 

Open Source XMPP from Jive Software! Posted by Picasa

 

Adam Williams Describes Open Source Jive and
XMPP or Instant Message Services! Posted by Picasa

 

Jive Software Allows the Creation of Multiple User
Chat (MUC) Rooms. Similar to Internet Relay
Chat (IRC) in Function. Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

 

KLUG NOVEMBER GENERAL ASSISTANCE MEETING

Hosted by KLUG Chairperson John Bridleman

The gathering tonight blew in on the heels of hurricane
Beta but no local storm damage or injuries were reported.
After Chairperson John Bridleman opened the server room
cabinet and the November KLUG meeting, the crowd broke
into five identifiable workgroups. In the following text,
names will be named and their activities will be disclosed.
http://www.weather.com/newscenter/tropical/

Bruce Smith, John Bridleman, and Todd Pillars worked
on the three new Linksys 802.11G WAP’s. They were busy
retrieving the static IP addresses of the WAP transmitters
so they could configure the network to make them web
accessible. You can actually reboot them from your web
browser and get a status report. The older WAP’s were
retired and had been giving unsatisfactory performance.

Someone recommended against reliance on the "One Button"
security feature of the Linksys 802.11G wireless router.
http://www.linksys.com Hey Cisco, where’s Poncho?

Robert G. Brown, Mark Jones, and Eric Beversluis were
dining on carryout delicacies and could be quite clearly
overheard discussing world, national, and local politics.
I didn’t hear any talk about Kalamazoo being designated
as a future space portal launch site. Saddam, Camilla, and
a host of other popular subjects were energetically being
jousted! There was an Open Source spin on some of it.
Had they visited?
http://www.nytimes.com/

Dirk Bartley and Tyler Haske were doing some support
work with a young man named Mike. The quest seemed
to involve the configuration possibilities of Xinerama.
Xinerama extensions allow applications and window
managers to use two or more physical displays as one large
virtual display.
http://sourceforge.net/projects/xinerama
Dirk did a presentation about this "back in the day…"
November 14, 2000 Multiple Monitors Using XFree86
http://www.kalamazoolinux.org/presentations

Leola Walker, Brock Inglehart, Stuart Gillis, and Jon
Smitley were all bunched up near the network connect
points. I noticed four laptops connected by ethernet,
to Appletalk, back to ethernet. In this daisy chain of
high-powered mobile computing collaboration was an
802.11G Bridge? Huh? Not sure what was going on
with that device… there may have been problems with
a PCMCIA wireless network driver or some such.
Leola had the photo album from the trip she and Brock
took to Alaska on a sleek red motorcycle this summer.
http://www.motorcycleroads.us/ak.html

In the center of the room was Tom Nelson. He had a
Dell PC that was loaded with Fedora Core 4 (Red Hat).
He was displaying plenty of hex screen dumps and
was in the process of tweaking the configuration files.
He was being assisted by both Tyler Haske and Andrew
Thompson. Dirk Bartley was also giving suggestions.
It looked like Tom was hardwired into the RJ45 wall
outlet. Someone was asking about the DD command.
How and when to use the dd command?
http://www.codecoffee.com/tipsforlinux/articles/036.html

This meeting is intended for those who are just curious
about Linux and Open Source software, who need some
help getting started, or want some extra eyes to look at
your advanced problem. You can also bring your computer
in order to have Linux installed on it, at no charge; or
to try a Linux distribution that boots from CD and requires
no change to your system's current software. Make sure
you arrange to get the software you want ahead of time.
If you would like to install Linux on a system, or you
need help with Linux, please fill out a Help Request so
that someone can research your hardware/software, etc...
http://kalamazoolinux.org/meetings/installmeeting.php
Installations and assistance are done by appointment
ONLY. You must fill out the appropriate form one week
prior to the meeting. If you only have general questions
or curiosity you don't need to do anything but show up!


(18 Linux Enthusiasts Attending)

 

Dirk Bartley and Tyler Haske work with Mike to
Understand and Exploit Xinerama! Posted by Picasa

 

Bruce Smith and John Bridleman Configure the
Static IP Addresses for KLUG's Three New WAP's!
Tom Nelson Works With a Fedora Core 4 Dell. Posted by Picasa

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