Cloud Security

Secure your Virtual Machines in the cloud by doing the following:

  1. Reduce your open ports to as few as possible.
  2. Do NOT allow any process serving as a TCP/IP listener to run as root.
  3. Change your SSH port from 22 to something other than 22.
    1. Change this every day if you are paranoid.
    2. Change this every hour if your are crazy paranoid.
  4. Use only Public Key Encryption for SSH access.
    1. Change your Public Keys every day if you are paranoid.
    2. Change your Public Keys every hour if you are crazy paranoid.
    3. Use only 2048 bit keys whether paranoid or not.
  5. Deny root level access for all users other than via the console and ensure the console requires physical access in a secure building.
    1. Deny root level access completely if paranoid.
  6. Encrypt your disks – this keeps those who may steal your VM Image from being able to use it.

Hackers will exploit those details you have neglected !!!

Leave too many ports open with root level access and YOU will be hacked !!!

Make things too convenient for your own use and YOU will be hacked !!!

Remain ignorant of how hackers work and YOU will be hacked !!!

Be lazy and stupid and YOU will be hacked !!!




First Impressions of iMac Core i7 + OS/X Lion

OS/X Lion tends to break some OS/X Leopard software…

I don’t have a list for you here… suffice it to say if you wanted to upgrade to Lion right now, you might want to wait a good long while to let everybody else update their Open Source code or you may run into some issues.

SVN Clients for OS/X Lion are a pain…

Apple needs to ship Parallels Desktop in OS/X

OS/X cannot do it all !

This was the first thing I had to learn about OS/X… not being used heavily by software developers… some Open Source goodies one might want to use just won’t be available or won’t be as nice as one might find when working with Windows.

For instance, there ain’t nothing like Tortoise SVN for OS/X and close don’t cut it.  Parallels Desktop running Windows 7 Ultimate takes care of this problem.

Setting up a simple SSH Server in OS/X is a pain – simple to do with Linux but not so simple with OS/X – seems like Steve Jobs feels like nobody should be able to use OS/X Leopard as a headless file server cuz there ain’t no easy way to get a simple SSH Server up and running without Parallels Desktop running Ubuntu, for instance.  Or maybe I just don’t get the genius behind OS/X which could be my problem… in any case, if I gotta spend 3+ hrs trying to make a simple SSH Server run in OS/X and it’s not working to the point of I gotta do some research then you can forget me thinking it’s gonna happen anytime soon.  Setting up an SSH Server literally takes seconds for just about any Linux including installing them keys so I can disable password logins – nobody needs to use my SSH Server unless they got a key with a passphrase – seems like I just gotta have security.

Parallels Desktop running Ubuntu Server 11.04 solves this problem.

The bottom line is… OS/X alone is a huge waste of time for a software developer unless you make sure to install and use Parallels Desktop 6 cuz you will have to use Windows 7 and/or Ubuntu or some combination of these flavors.

Microsoft should cozy up with the Parallels folks too

I have been saying this for several years by now but… Windows needs to be combined with Linux and Ubuntu makes the most sense.

Parallels for Windows with Ubuntu 11.04 would do the trick.  VmWare and VirtualBox can’t hold a candle to Parallels Desktop 6 – sorry but I have been smitten by Parallels Desktop 6.

Makes more sense to run Mac OS/X in Windows that vice-versa

Every so often someone asks me to take some App I wrote for Windows and run it on a Mac – Adobe AIR 2.6+ makes this a breeze especially when I can simulate the Windows File Naming conventions in Mac OS/X using a single AS3 function… been there and done that.

What sucks about this is having to drop the bucks for a Mac just to make this happen with all the subtleties of Mac OS/X you just gotta have the hardware to make this happen sometimes.  Saves money and time if Parallels Desktop for Windows would be as good as Parallels Desktop for OS/X so someone like me could run Mac OS/X in Windows since using Windows makes development a breeze as compared to how this happens in Mac OS/X or doesn’t happen as the case may be.

Mac OS/X handles Apps in a childish way

Why does Steve Jobs get so anal about how you can use Apps in Mac OS/X ?!?

I can only use one App at a time… the App I want to use must be in focus… this is the only way the one menu bar for the whole OS will allow me to interact with the App… me thinks Steve Jobs has never used OS/X for doing anything serious.

Windows allows me to do whatever I want whenever I want however I want.

Windows just works better for Apps.  Sorry but this is how I like to roll… tons of windows open at the same time, I get to use them all without having to tell the OS which one I want to use next.

Mac OS/X would be way to clumsy for serious development let alone power use.

Getting back to work using Windows…

By the way… I happen to own an iMac Core i7 fully loaded with all the bells and whistles… along with not one but two Mac Minis.  Just didn’t want you to think I am some kind of Windows snob.  I just happen to think Windows lets me rock-and-roll the way I want to and OS/X wants me to do just one thing at a time before moving along to the next one thing I want to do.  Easier to handle multitasking this way and not only because this reminds me of cooperative multitasking which is far easier to code than real multitasking but then Microsoft is just more serious about their OS’s than Apple could ever be based on my experience with using OS’s for hard-core programming.

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