Mon, 30 May 2011


May 27th, 2011 This week's nodelist is nodelist.147. This is zip archive

The nodelist was delayed a bit this week with the massive power outage in our area (24 hours almost to the minute)

Thankfully, no damage was done to any of our property.. and we were more than happy when the lights came back on!

posted at: 19:00 | path: /fidonet | permanent link to this entry | 0 comments | "

Thu, 26 May 2011


A Possibility in our Area



  1. Get the silly 4 feral kitties inside!
  2. Get the 3 pups inside
  3. Wait 'til the last possible moment to unplug the modem from the phone line
  4. Maybe take the linux box down :)
We're right there about in crosshairs on the map

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Fri, 20 May 2011


May 20th, 2011 This week's nodelist is nodelist.140. This is zip archive

Welcome to Net 340 - A NEW net in the Oregon Area! Many thanks go out to R17C Bob Seaborn, R14C Jon Justvig, and Net 340's new NC, Rob Starr! You guys made this possible, and your time and dedication to Fidonet is much appreciated!

Along with a returning member of Fidonet, Rob McGee, Net 340 now is the new home of Eric Oulashin.

posted at: 14:47 | path: /fidonet | permanent link to this entry | 0 comments | "

Wed, 18 May 2011


A New E-Zine for Fidonet

FidoGazette, now in it's fifth year of existence (wow, when did that happen? :) ) is now moving to Bi-Weekly issues rather than monthly issues.

Our first bi-weekly issue was sent out yesterday, May 15th, 2011. Those of us who contribute to FidoGazette's substance are hoping to continue this, and better yet, ramp up to weekly editions.

Your submissions make this possible, and so many thanks are due to you, the SysOps of Fidonet!

If you're not sure how to submit an article, just email it to me, or send a netmail to Janis Kracht 1:261/38

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Mon, 16 May 2011


Talk it up - IPV6: A New Echo

The IPV6 Echo has been put on the Backbone today. This echo will used for discussions regarding the new IP standard, version 6, which will eventually replace what we now use, version 4 (IPV4).

Why all the hubbub? Well, we (anyone using the internet) are running out of IP addresses.. those addresses that you use when you register your domain name (like mine,

We need rewrites of programs like BinkD, Argus, etc. al., which right now are probably limited to IPV4.

... Though for now, of course, IPV4 is still very much in effect

IPv4 address ranges

IPv6 first and foremost sports larger addresses. Much larger addresses. 40 or 48 bits would have given us more than a trillion or even 281 trillion addresses, respectively, and 64 bits would have been a nice round number. But the IETF opted for 128 bits this time around. The total number of possible addresses that this gives us:


IPv6 was designed by the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) to deal with the long-anticipated IPv4 address exhaustion.

IPv4 addresses are written down by splitting them into four 8-bit values and putting periods between those, for instance, IPv6 addresses on the other hand, are written down as eight 16-bit values with colons between them, and each 16-bit value is displayed in hexadecimal, i.e., using numbers and the letters A - F. For example, 2001:db8:31:1:20a:95ff:fef5:246e. It's not uncommon for IPv6 addresses to have a sequence of consecutive zeroes. In these cases, exactly one of those sequences can be left out. So 2001:db8:31:0:0:0:0:1 becomes 2001:db8:31::1 and the IPv6 loopback address 0:0:0:0:0:0:0:1 becomes ::1.

Although in most regards, IPv6 is still IP and works pretty much the same as IPv4, the new protocol departs from IPv4 in some ways. With IPv4, you need a DHCP server to tell you your address if you don't want to resort to manual configuration. This works very well if there's a single DHCP server, but not so much when there's more than one and they supply conflicting information. It can also be hard to get a system to have the same address across reboots with DHCP.

With IPv6, DHCP is largely unnecessary because of stateless autoconfiguration. This is a mechanism whereby routers send out "router advertisements" (RAs) that contain the upper 64 bits of an IPv6 address, and hosts generate the lower 64 bits themselves in order to form a complete address.

Although designing a new protocol isn't exactly trivial, the hard part is getting it deployed. Having to put an entire new infrastructure in place or flipping a switch from "IPv4" to "IPv6" for the current Internet aren't feasible. To avoid these issues as much as possible, the IETF came up with a number of transition techniques. The most important ones are dual stack and tunneling. Dual stack is nothing more than the notion that a host can run both IPv4 and IPv6 side by side, so it can talk to IPv4 hosts over IPv4 and to IPv6 hosts over IPv6. Tunneling means that when IPv6 packets must cross part of the network that only supports IPv4, the IPv6 packets are put inside IPv4 packets, transmitted across the IPv4-only part of the network, and then the IPv4 part is removed and the packets continue on their way over IPv6.

Most modern operating systems are set up for dual-stack operation by default. So if there's an IPv6 router on the local network that advertises an IPv6 prefix, a host will generate an IPv6 address for itself so it can talk to the IPv6 Internet. Now that Microsoft has enabled IPv6 by default in Vista (it can be turned on and off with ipv6 install and ipv6 uninstall in XP), we can probably expect more IPv6-enabled home routers - and there are quite a number of them now.

Note that there's no requirement that your ISP supports the new protocol in order to use IPv6: an IPv6-enabled router or a host itself can use a tunnel to reach the IPv6 Internet. There are several tunneling techniques, but the most common ones are "manual" IPv6 in IP tunnels where the exact path of the tunneled IPv6 packets is set up through manual configuration, and 6to4 automatic tunneling. With 6to4, a host or router can create a range of IPv6 addresses from its IPv4 address. 6to4 addresses are easily recognizable because they always start with 2002. Because every 6to4-derived IPv6 address maps to an IPv4 address, it's easy for a system that understands 6to4 to tunnel the IPv6 packets to the right place over IPv4. Gateways make it possible for native IPv6 systems to communicate with 6to4 systems.

Note that Windows Vista (and Windows XP with IPv6 enabled) have 6to4 enabled by default when the system has a public IPv4 address. 6to4 is also relatively easy to turn on with Mac OS X and BSD/Linux and is automatically configured on many linux systems.

Systems with IPv6 connectivity (regardless of the type) decide whether to use IPv4 or IPv6 to reach a destination by consulting the DNS. Communication over the Internet requires addresses, but we generally work with domain names. The DNS takes care of the difference by having one or more A (address) records that contain an IPv4 address associated with a given name. If a system also has an IPv6 address, this is added to the DNS with an AAAA (quad-A) record. Hosts that only have IPv4 connectivity ignore the AAAA records, but dual stack hosts ask the DNS for both the A and AAAA records. They will then generally prefer to connect to a destination over IPv6 if possible, and use IPv4 if there's no AAAA record in the DNS or connecting over IPv6 doesn't work. Some applications and/or OSes always ask for AAAA records when IPv6 is turned on, which creates a problem with some (increasingly rare) buggy DNS servers that return an error after an AAAA query. In these cases, turning off IPv6 can make surfing the web a lot faster from what I understand.

You can see if your computer has working IPv6 connectivity by connecting to or KAME is a Japanese project that built an IPv6 networking stack for BSD and Mac OS. Their mascot is a turtle, which dances if you connect over IPv6. APNIC is responsible for giving out IP addresses in the Asia-Pacific region, and their web site will tell you your IP address (IPv4 or IPv6) in the top left corner of the page. Internet Explorer under Windows, Safari on Mac OS X 10.4, and Firefox under Windows, Linux and BSD will use IPv6 when available on the system, but Firefox on the Mac has IPv6 turned off in about:config.

Although stateless autoconfig works very differently from DHCP, in practice IPv6 works much the same as IPv4 in a home network: computers and other devices automatically get an address from a router, modem or gateway so they can connect to the 'Net without manual intervention. Firewalling is a bit different, because with IPv4, most people don't have the option to keep their network completely open.

posted at: 00:00 | path: /technical | permanent link to this entry | 0 comments | "

Thu, 12 May 2011


May 13th, 2011 This week's nodelist is nodelist.133. This is zip archive

posted at: 00:00 | path: /fidonet | permanent link to this entry | 0 comments | "

Wed, 04 May 2011


May 5th, 2011 This week's nodelist is nodelist.126. This is a zip archive.

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Tue, 03 May 2011


From FidoGazette

Richard, in his continuing Toolbox series, brings to light issues that all of us should care about.

Many of these powers like warrantless gps tracking can be abused by local authorities, and U.S. Attorneys for political purposes.

A U.S. Attorney in one administration could use this power to track people protesting outside an Abortion Clinic... The U.S. Attorney for the same district in the next administration could use this power to track people protesting outside a military recruiting office.

One of the primary reasons for requiring warrants for such actions is that a judge has to be convinced that a crime has been committed or is likely to be committed. That serves to discourage the abuse of these powers for political purposes. Absent the requirement for warrants, the control is lost.

One of the protections that the founding fathers thought they were building into the Constitution was the protection against the use of government agencies to suppress legitimate political dissent.

Suppose a U.S. Attorney was shown the content of a fidonet political echo and decided that some of the posters in that echo should be ummm "watched" and had a law enforcement agent slap a gps tracker on that person's car. Given this Appelate Ruling there is nothing to stop them. They no longer need to prove to a judge that you are conspiring to commit a crime.


posted at: 00:00 | path: /politics | permanent link to this entry | 0 comments | "

Sun, 01 May 2011


From FidoGazette May Issue

"Buckwheat is Dead" Syndrome

Years ago, I believe in the early 1980's, Eddie Murphy created a character based on a character from the 1950's tv show, "The Little Rascal's".

Murphy's 'grown-up' "Buckwheat" was hilarious and the schtick took off on "Saturday Night Live", where Murphy introduced the character.

After a while though, Murphy grew weary of the repeated requests to "do Buckwheat... do Buckwheat" and so one day Murphy did what he had to do.. and Buckwheat was shot to death, assassinated if you will, on camera in front of 30 Rockefeller Plaza in New York City.

That killed off the character. Kind of.

So many episodes played off the Buckwheat is DEAD! line.. for instance, the players would be participating in a "BUCKWHEAT IS DEAD" skit.. to be interupted by a newsflash stating, "YES, BUCKWHEAT is REALLY DEAD". Soon any news skit was interupted with the same.

Back then, the talented fellows in "Saturday Night Live" picked up on the media's hunger for death and dying and it was Eddie Murphy who was essentially was the one to slam the media where it hurt. Obviously with Osama Bin Laden's death this week, the media hasn't learned much.

But need I say it again...


posted at: 00:00 | path: /politics | permanent link to this entry | 0 comments | "