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55526Re: [linux] Re: Whatever happened to "Linux Magazine"? Warning: RANT

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  • Matt Bailey
    Apr 2, 2009
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      On Wednesday 01 April 2009 17:28:18 Thad Floryan wrote:
      > --- In linux@yahoogroups.com, Godwin Stewart <grs.ygroups@...> wrote:
      <snippage in effect>
      > Now *THAT* (using /etc/hosts) is one of the most useful tips I've seen
      > in ages! Many thanks!
      > As a payback, assuming your partner is using, ahem, Windows, there has
      > been an /etc/hosts equivalent on Windows OSs for at least 10 years now
      > (Win2K, WinXP, Vista, Win7) per:
      > C:\Windows\System32\drivers\etc\hosts
      > Yes, "hosts" (without ".txt"). Its format is identical to Linux/UNIX
      > for some POSIX compatibility.

      Yes, and it works just great. Yet another example of a Windows capability that
      no one uses/is aware of. As much as Windows sucks, in some ways it actually
      doesn't suck quite so much as we usually see, because of configuration
      changes that can be made or little features like the hosts file, but no one
      cares to actually go try stuff and figure out these features. Hosts is a good
      example.....rather than actually editing the hosts file, people rely on
      cheesy ad-blockers (certain Firefox plug-ins exempt here) and the cliche
      nearly-useless canon of overly simplistic firewall (usually the one that
      comes with Windows), IE's pop-up blocker, and an overpriced "anti-spyware"
      and anti-virus + e-mail scanner ("because I use Outbreak Excess and can't be
      trusted to screen my e-mails") + link scanner ("because I am a gullible
      clueless user of the Web and will click on just about anything unless it has
      a red flag or some other sort of cheesy warning on it") + real-time
      protection "agent" that slows the machine to a crawl. Actually, since Windows
      users love point-and-click so much, you know what would make a lot of sense?
      For someone to write a handy graphical utility or browser plug-in to block
      websites using hosts (ergo, you see an advertisement website, so you tell the
      app it's bad and the app gives that domain an IP to nowhere in hosts).
      Instead, software writers give us an endless supply of junk "registry
      cleaners" and system cleanup utilities. The ONLY security app of any sort
      I've ever seen that uses hosts is Spybot Search and Destroy. It has a list of
      hundreds of known bad sites that it puts in hosts, redirected to
      localhost/ What's sad is I worked with this program myself for
      several weeks at my first PC repair job before I actually noticed/realized
      what it was doing by putting those entries in there.

      People love The Big Button. Rather than actually assume even a cursory
      understanding of computers and basic fundamental functionality, they just
      want their security app or whatever to only say "this and that are wrong or
      out of date" and a big ol' button next to it that says "Fix All" that will
      automagically shush all their problems away and reward them with a nice green
      check mark for that status-quo false sense of security...sort of like the
      current US cultural climate and government policy, come to think of it.

      K, rant over. Caught me on a semi-bad day. :P

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