Scott's Weblog The weblog of an IT pro specializing in virtualization, networking, open source, and cloud computing

8 Things to Help Keep Your Mac Secure

As the recent spate of Mac-specific malware shows, Mac OS X is not immune to security problems. (Not that this is really surprising to anyone.) To be honest, though, I was—until recently—fairly confident that my systems were reasonably secure. However, a Twitter conversation with security guru Christofer Hoff (aka @Beaker) convinced me that I wasn’t doing enough. The appearance of the Flashback.K trojan, which can install itself even without administrative privileges, confirmed that he was right—I wasn’t doing enough. (No, I didn’t get infected.)

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Announcement: VMware vSphere Training Video

In my 2012 projects post, I alluded to some “new projects” that I wasn’t quite ready to discuss. As you can guess by the title of this post, this is one of those new projects! I’m very excited to announce that I am working with Train Signal to create a video training course strictly focused on designing VMware vSphere environments. In fact, the name of the new video training course is “Designing VMware Infrastructure.”

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Setting Up ipfw on Mac OS X

Using multiple layers of security has long been recognized as a useful strategy in hardening your computers against attack or exploit. In this post, I want to explain how to set up and configure the BSD-level ipfw firewall that is present in Mac OS X. While ipfw is certainly not a security panacea, it can be a solid part of a broader security strategy.

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Killing Ads in RSS Feeds in Vienna

Almost five years ago (in mid-2007) I wrote about how to kill ads in RSS feeds in NetNewsWire. That technique has been a lifesaver for me, as I rely heavily upon RSS feeds to stay up-to-date with information and trends.

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The Hypervisor is Only Part of the Picture

The question of VMware’s future in the face of increasing competition is not a new one; it’s been batted around by quite a few folks. So Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols’ article “Does VMware Have a Real Future?” doesn’t really open any new doors or expose any new secrets that haven’t already been discussed elsewhere. What it does do, in my opinion, is show that the broader market hasn’t yet fully digested VMware’s long-term strategy.

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The OS is Dead, Long Live the OS

I just finished reading a post on ZDNet titled “Are Hyper-V and App-V the new Windows Servers?” in which the author—Ken Hess—postulates that the rise of virtualization will shape the future of the Microsoft Windows OS such that, in his words:

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Why SR-IOV on vSphere?

Yesterday I posted an article regarding SR-IOV support in the next release of Hyper-V, and I commented in that article that I hoped VMware added SR-IOV support to vSphere. A couple of readers commented about why I felt SR-IOV support was important, what the use cases might be, and what the potential impacts could be to the vSphere networking environment. Those are all excellent questions, and I wanted to take the time to discuss them in a bit more detail than simply a response to a blog comment.

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SR-IOV Support in the Next Version of Hyper-V

While browsing my list of RSS feeds tonight, I came across a series of articles by John Howard, a senior program manager on the Hyper-V team at Microsoft. The post was one of a series of posts describing SR-IOV support in the next version of Hyper-V, found in Windows “8”. I hadn’t heard that Microsoft was adding SR-IOV support to the next version of Hyper-V, so when I saw that I was surprised. Personally, I think SR-IOV support is a big deal (see the note at the end of this post for why).

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Scoop: Special Guest Speakers at Cisco Live 2012

Last year I had the opportunity to attend Cisco Live in Las Vegas for the very first time, and it was a tremendously rewarding conference. I guess I did enough liveblogging and tweeting at the show that I garnered the attention of the Cisco Live social media team, who just shared with me a scoop regarding the guest speakers at this year’s Cisco Live in San Diego.

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Some Thoughts and Questions About STT

I just finished reading the Internet Draft for Stateless Transport Tunneling (STT), a proposed protocol for network virtualization. STT’s contemporaries are VXLAN (Virtual eXtensible Local Area Network) and NVGRE (Network Virtualization using Generic Routing Encapsulation), both of which are also described in IETF Internet Drafts. The goal of all of these protocols is to virtualize (abstract) the physical network topology and bring functionality like isolation of multiple tenants, isolation of overlapping address space between multiple tenants, expanded VLAN/tenant ID address space, and enhanced VM mobility (by providing L2 services over an L3 network, for example).

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