How Microsoft Lost the API War by Joel

Sunday, June 13, 2004

Here’s a theory you hear a lot these days: “Microsoft is finished. As soon as Linux makes some inroads on the desktop and web applications replace desktop applications, the mighty empire will topple.”

Although there is some truth to the fact that Linux is a huge threat to Microsoft, predictions of the Redmond company’s demise are, to say the least, premature. Microsoft has an incredible amount of cash money in the bank and is still incredibly profitable. It has a long way to fall. It could do everything wrong for a decade before it started to be in remote danger, and you never know… they could reinvent themselves as a shaved-ice company at the last minute. So don’t be so quick to write them off. In the early 90s everyone thought IBM was completely over: mainframes were history! Back then, Robert X. Cringely predicted that the era of the mainframe would end on January 1, 2000 when all the applications written in COBOL would seize up, and rather than fix those applications, for which, allegedly, the source code had long since been lost, everybody would rewrite those applications for client-server platforms.

Wi-Fi hotspots simply too expensive to German study – but UK likes them on trains!

Wi-Fi hotspots simply too expensive
By Jan Libbenga

Published Wednesday 2nd June 2004 10:32 GMT
Wi-Fi hotspots will only meet the needs of small customer groups and for the majority of hotspots there will be little or no return of investment. So says the Scientific Institute for Communication Services or WIK, Germany’s leading research and advisory institute for communication services.

The institute expects a consolidation process within the next few years. More importantly, it warns that users find the tariffs of public Wi-Fi services – 5 to 10 euros per hour – simply too high.

More UK train firms commit to on-board Wi-Fi
By Tony Smith
Published Tuesday 25th May 2004 09:19 GMT

Together, Virgin and the other three operators account for 20 per cent of the UK rail industry, which comprises 29 TOCs, including Virgin’s two and GNER. They run over 700 trains, all of which will be gaining Wi-Fi support over the next four years, Broadreach said.

In a survey of 1600 UK rail passengers conducted in March and April this year on behalf of Broadreach, some 78 per cent of business travellers said they are interested in using Wi-Fi on train journeys. And 72 per cent said the provision of such services would persuade them to take trips by train rather than by car or aircraft.

Since most of them are willing to pay up to £12 for the privilege, depending on the lenth of the journey, that’s a big motivation for TOCs to roll-out wireless Internet technology. Around half of their business customers already carry a laptop on board – almost a quarter take a PDA with them. How many of those devices are already WLAN-enabled is not known, however.

FreeRADIUS & Freeside & SOWN-1x

FreeRADIUS includes more than 40 vendor-specific dictionary files. It ships with support for LDAP, MySQL, PostgreSQL, Oracle databases. It supports EAP, with EAP-MD5, EAP-TLS, EAP-TTLS, EAP-PEAP, and Cisco LEAP sub-types. It is rapidly approaching a stable 1.0 release, with increment improvements being added and tested daily. In short, it is a powerful, fast, and complex RADIUS server which is compatible with the latest network protocols and practices, and is well suited for deployment in large networks.

Freeside is an open-source billing package for ISPs.

Major new features include ACH (electronic check) support and time/bandwidth billing with FreeRADIUS, ICRADIUS, or Radiator. New reports were added (suspended packages, payments by type and/or date range, and package definitions by total customer packages). The Web UI gained a “cancel this customer” button, easy package changes, and an “unprovision” option for individual services. Exports to Apache, LDAP and command-based vpopmail were added, and suspension/unsuspension hooks were added to the export API.

SOWN-1x is a project designed to let people share their wireless connectivity safely and securely using the 802.1x protocol. You control who can use your access points, from friends and family to any user in the database. All you need to take part is an 802.1x capable access point and a static IP address on your internet connection.

We also log who is using your access point and when, thus if anybody should abuse your internet connection it will be possible to identify them.


Do-It-Yourself VOIP Telco

Posted by michael on Friday May 28, @09:27AM
from the some-hacking-required dept.

DamnYankee writes “Robert X. Cringley predicts the coming demise of the landline telco monopolies from the grassroots encroachment of VoIP and Linux on the latest generation of Wifi routers. According to Bob, ‘The result is a system with economics with which a traditional local phone company simply can’t compete’. With Linux capabilities and builtin VoIP any Mom and Pop can become the local equivalent of a cellular phone company for the price of $79 Wifi router. Now how is Verizon going to compete with that? Get the full scoop from the man himself.”

[b”>What is NetShare?[/b”>
WiFi NetShare from Speakeasy allows you–the tech-savvy Speakeasy DSL member–to offer your neighbors broadband service via the new WiFi revolution. They get broadband service; you reduce your monthly fees.

[b”>FXO kit[/b”>

[b”>Great VOIP Info site – running tikiwiki[/b”> Launches Internet Telephony Service

By evilbunny
from the free phone calls department, Section News
Posted on Sun May 30th, 2004 at 03:51:28 AM PST

So you’ve heard about this enum thing-a-majig and you’re dying to try it out but don’t have a spare linux box to throw a copy of Asterisk or SER up to abuse it to your hearts content! What’s a geek to do??

Well there’s finally a light at the end of the tunnel, presents, a simple yet effective SIP proxy service that’s capable of enum lookups from the zone. To make use of the service, all you need to do is bring a SIP software or hardware phone, make a couple of changes and off you go! It’s literally that simple! isn’t like most other services out there on the net, when you go to sign up you won’t be issued yet another randomly allocated number, instead you’ll be able to verify your phone number and have that linked directly to your account.

We don’t think 100 different numbers for 100 different services is a very easy thing to keep track of. However makes it possible to track all those other numbers with a single number, and not a new number, but your existing phone number.

Wifi and Mesh bootables

Locustworld – a US connection

The founder, David Peterson, saw the benefit of a wireless system that would be self organizing. After months of research, he found Jon Anderson of Locustworld. Jon’s vision of an open source system built on user input and live testing appealed to David and a working relationship was formed.

Mesh Image Boot


WRT54G (More)

HotSpot Boot

Public IP’s ZoneCD

Gateway authorisation

Linux LiveCD Router

HotSpot Boot Mac (see FAQ)

Round up article on HotSpots

What are WiFi phones?

WiFi based telephones who utilize Voice-over-IP technology to make calls worldwide at no or low costs are already available:


A good portal: