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Mohlamme_makhathe's Public Library

  • When exploring a network for security auditing or inventory/administration, you usually want to know more than the bare IP addresses of identified machines. Your reaction to discovering a printer may be very different than to finding a router, wireless access point, telephone PBX, game console, Windows desktop, or Unix server. Finer grained detection (such as distinguishing Mac OS X 10.4 from 10.3) is useful for determining vulnerability to specific flaws and for tailoring effective exploits for those vulnerabilities.

    • The categories are:

      • Co-Developer communities – where participants share broad commit access to a particular Free software commons using open source licenses and norms 
        • Core co-developers – people whose main participation implements, evolves and maintains the code in the commons;
        • Extending co-developers (extenders) – people who co-develop software that builds on or aggregates the work in the commons, for example making extensions, plug-ins, localisations and distributions;
      • Deployer communities – where the main engagement with the code involves a running instance that is configured and run by the community members in conjunction with other software 
        • Deployer-developers – people who take the contents of the commons and configure and customise them for deployment;
        • Users – people who use – and whose employers may pay for – the work of Deployer-developers and put it to productive use.

      Nested community layers - oval diagram - (c) 2010 Simon Phipps - CC-BY-SA

    • This model for community types has gradually developed over time for me. Naming no names, I have especially observed the following points arising from the model:

      1. There are four distinct community types here, but people may play different roles in multiple communities. For example, package maintainers working on an operating system distribution may be Extenders with regard to the code they are packaging and Originators with regard to the distro. And many people in the other three roles are also Users.
      3. People may well play multiple roles within a community too. A Deployer-developer may well be contributing code as an Originator as they address problems during deployment, for example.
      5. There are many different ways to contribute to the commons while participating. Users are often a crucial source of documentation, case studies, bug reports and feature requests and the User role is by no means to be considered unimportant.
      7. The freedoms people need protected vary between the roles. For example, a User is likely to view being protected from lock-in as a primary freedom and to want a choice of Deployer-developers working on their behalf as well as the use of open standards by Originators. While the original Four Freedoms provide a baseline, I’m increasingly convinced there are more freedoms that need protecting.
      9. The way a commercial organisation engages with communities must respect both the role the organisation plays with respect to the community and also the roles of the people they wish to influence. Treating everyone as if they were, for example, Deployer-developers, will lead to negative reactions from all the Originators and Extenders.

    • Educational institutions shouldn't use proprietary software for these (and other) reasons. There are free software replacements that:

      • allow the students to study the program and even change it to function differently or better;
      • don't cost any money or cost way less than Apple and Windows machines;
      • help emphasize general and best computer practices, so students can figure out how to use any computing operating system and platform, not just the one they were forced to use in school.

      Companies such as Apple and Microsoft offer "free" or "discounted" prices on their proprietary software licenses, so that students become "hooked" on their platforms and have to pay for them at home or at work whenever they graduate from school.


      I strongly recommend your students become broadly educated computer users, so they can not only keep their machines and identities secure and private, but also so they can maximize the effectiveness of their computing and be more employable because of their high ability to adapt to whatever computer platform their employer may be using. It is for these reasons and more that I recommend FBISD invests in non-proprietary software systems such as GNU/Linux.


      You can learn why free software should be used in education at the following links:


  • The rights that an owner has to software are, of course, in the form of copyright and, in some cases, patents.  Copyright law gives automatic protection for  computer software without the need for registration , and the owner has the right to control the copying, modification and distribution of the software.  In addition, the owner may be able to get a patent for the software, in which event the owner has the absolute right to control the making or using of the software, irrespective of whether or not there has been any copying - this is a controversial area of the law because, although the law says that you cannot patent a computer program ‘as such’,  this has been interpreted in many countries to mean that you can still patent a technical innovation that uses software (the issue has never been decided in South Africa, but lots of software patents have been registered on the assumption that the South African courts will follow this line of reasoning
  • It may contain a disclaimer of liability in the case of any damage being suffered, and  it may require  the user to include the copyright notice and the liability disclaimer when redistributing. It may possibly  contain a restriction of redistribution in the case of  modifications, a concept that is known as ‘copy left’.

  • Slate Tablet PCs


    Slate Tablet PCs have no lid or keyboard, which makes them slimmer and lighter in weight than most convertible Tablet PCs. You can hold a slate Tablet PC in one hand and write on the screen with the other hand, like using a clipboard.

  • If you're looking for something smaller than a notebook or Tablet PC and yet powerful enough to get your tasks done while on the road or in tight quarters, consider a UMPC.
  • Convertible Tablet PCs


    Convertible Tablet PCs give you the best of both worlds: You can use them either in tablet mode or laptop mode. In laptop mode, you can use the integrated keyboard and mouse or the tablet pen to navigate and write.

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  • Linux Mint is designed specifically for people who just want a desktop OS, and who don't wish to learn more about how Linux works (i.e. non-Linux hobbyists). This approach makes installing and running the software easy and maintenance pretty much a nonissue. Even more than Ubuntu, Mint emphasizes easy usability, at the expense of not using new features until they have proven themselves trustworthy.

    For instance, Mint eschews the somewhat controversial Unity desktop interface, which Canonical adopted to more easily port Ubuntu to mobile platforms. Instead, Mint sticks with the more widely known, and more mature, Gnome interface.

  • penStack

    The OpenStack project arrived relatively late to the cloud computing party, but it comes with one particularly indispensable feature: scalability.

    "We're not talking about [using OpenStack to run a] cloud of 100 servers or even 1,000 servers, but tens of thousands of servers. Other options out there aren't really considering that scale," said Jonathan Bryce, chairman of the OpenStack Project Policy Board.

    Since its launch in July 2010, OpenStack quickly gained a great deal of support from IT firms interested in the cloud computing space, such as Hewlett-Packard, Intel and Dell. OpenStack devotees like to call their work the fastest growing open source project, with involvement from over 144 companies and 2,100 participants. Dell launched a package, called the Dell OpenStack Cloud Solution, which combines OpenStack with the company's own servers and software. HP launched a beta public cloud service with the technology as well.

    The core computational components of OpenStack were developed at NASA Ames Research Center, for an internal cloud to store large amounts of space imagery. Originally, the NASA administrators tried using the Eucalyptus software project platform, but found challenges in scaling the software to the required levels, according to Chris Kemp, who oversaw the development of the OpenStack cloud controller when he was CIO of NASA Ames.

  • Stig

    The past year has seen the dramatic growth in the use of nonrelational databases, such as Cassandra, MongoDB, CouchDB and countless others. But at the NoSQL Now conference, held last September, much of the buzz surrounded a still unreleased data store called Stig. With any luck, we will see Stig in 2012.

    Stig is designed for the unique workloads of social networking sites, its maintainers claim. It was created at the social networking site Tagged by software engineer Jason Lucas, who calls the technology a distributed graph database. It is designed to support heavily interactive and social Web applications. The data store's architecture allows for inferential searching, allowing users and applications to look for connections between disparate pieces of information. Because it was written, in part, in the Haskell functional programming language, it can easily divide up its workload across multipl

  • open source has left the proprietary software world in turmoil over the past few years, as Linux, the Apache Web server, Perl, Apache, Hadoop, OpenOffice, GIMP and dozens of other programs put the pinch on their commercial counterparts.
  • Here are five projects to watch closely in 2012
  • Nginx is already run on 50 million different Internet domains, or about 10% of the entire Internet, the developers of the software estimate. It is particularly widely used on highly trafficked Web sites, such as Facebook, Zappos, Groupon, Hulu, Dropbox, and WordPress. Not surprisingly, the software's creator, Igor Sysoev, designed Nginx in 2004 specifically to handle a large numbers of concurrent users -- up to 10,000 connections per server.

  • The PuTTY executables and source code are distributed under the MIT licence, which is similar in effect to the BSD licence. (This licence is Open Source certified and complies with the Debian Free Software Guidelines.
  • n particular, anybody (even companies) can use PuTTY without restriction (even for commercial purposes) and owe nothing to me or anybody else. Also, apart from having to maintain the copyright notice and the licence text in derivative products, anybody (even companies) can adapt the PuTTY source code into their own programs and products (even commercial products) and owe nothing to me or anybody else

  • PuTTY is a free implementation of Telnet and SSH for Windows and Unix platforms, along with an xterm terminal emulator.

  • What are some successful FOSS projects?


    While FOSS may seem a relatively new concept, it has actually been around since long before the Internet came into existence. FOSS has more than proven that it is ready for prime time, mission-critical usage. In some cases, it is the critical linchpin that makes the Internet possible. The following is a small sample of successful FOSS projects.


    [edit] BIND (DNS Server)


    Internet addresses such as or would not function if not for Domain Name Servers (DNS). These servers take these human-friendly names and convert them into the computer-friendly numeric addresses and vice-versa. Without these servers, users would have to memorize numbers such as in order to use a website.


    The Berkeley Internet Name Domain (BIND) server runs 95 percent of all DNS servers[45], including most of the DNS root servers. These servers hold the master record of all domain names on the Internet. BIND is a FOSS program licensed under a BSD-style license by the Internet Software Consortium.


    [edit] Apache (Web Server)


    Responsible for receiving and fulfilling requests from web browsers, the Apache web server is one of the foundations of the World Wide Web (WWW) as we know it today. Apache has been the number one web server since April 1996 and currently commands 62.53 percent of the total web server market [46]. That is more than double the market share (27.17 percent) of its closest competitor, Microsoft’s IIS server.


    These figures fluctuate monthly of course. The latest figures can be found at Netcraft’s Web Server Survey site, at: .


    [edit] Sendmail (Email Server)


    The Internet as we know it would not exist without email and once again, FOSS is one of the primary drivers. An email server’s (sometimes called a Mail Transport Agent or MTA) function is to deliver user email to its destination. Complex functionality, such as email forwarding and redirection, junk email rejection and routing, makes email servers rather complex systems. The problem of junk email (sometimes referred to as spam) makes security a critical feature, as spammers sending their unsolicited email to unsuspecting users would otherwise hijack an email server and render it useless to legitimate users.


    A 2001 survey by D.J. Bernstein found that Unix Sendmail had the largest market share, at 42 percent of all email servers. This was larger than the share of its next two competitors combined, Microsoft Exchange and Unix qmail, with 18 percent and 17 percent, respectively [47]. Note that qmail is a Unix-based email server but is not FOSS as its licensing terms are too restrictive.


    [edit] OpenSSH (Secure Network Administration Tool)


    Because Internet traffic can pass through multiple networks when a user connects into a remote server, security is a major concern. The Secure Shell (SSH) protocol allows system administrators to control their servers from a distance, safe in the knowledge that it is almost impossible to intercept and decipher the information that they may be transmitting.


    OpenSSH, a FOSS implementation of the SSH protocol, has grown from a mere five percent of the market in 2000 to 66.8 percent of the market in April 2002. OpenSSH came into existence as a result of a restrictive licensing change in the standard SSH implementation at that time.


    [edit] OpenOffice (Office Productivity Suite)


    While FOSS products have been strong on the server side, FOSS desktop applications are relatively new. Open Office, which is based on the source code of the formerly proprietary StarOffice, is a FOSS equivalent of Microsoft Office, with most of its features. It includes a full-featured word processor, spreadsheet and presentation software. One of the advantages for many considering the shift from a Windows desktop environment to Open Office is that it reads most Microsoft Office documents without problems. This makes the transition relatively painless and Open Office has been used in recent high profile switches from Windows to Linux. While it does not have a very large market share as yet, its usage is expected to grow dramatically over time as more organizations use this full-featured, low-cost application

    • Some popular open source software options include:


      Office software

      • Abiword - word processing tool
      • Alfresco - enterprise content management system
      • Joomla - enterprise content management system
      • Open - business productivity suite
      • Drupal - enterprise content management system
      • Chandler - contact management and collaboration
      • SugarCRM - customer relationship management
      • vTiger - customer relationship management
      • MySQL - database
      • Ingres - database

      Operating systems

      • GNU/Linux (various versions or distributions include Debian, Fedora, Gentoo, Ubuntu and Red Hat) - operating system
      • OpenSolaris - operating system
      • FreeBSD - operating system
      • Android - mobile phone platform

      Internet-related applications

      • Juice - podcasting
      • Mozilla Firefox - web browser
      • Mozilla Thunderbird - email client
      • Pidgin - instant messaging
      • Zimbra - email and collaboration server
      • Apache - web server
      • Zope - web application server
      • PHP - web application platform
      • Wordpress - blog hosting platform
      • MediaWiki - information sharing platform

      IT security

      • Smoothwall - firewall and security tools
      • Wireshark (aka Ethereal) - security application
      • KeePass - password management
      • Clam AV - antivirus software


      • GIMP - image processing/graphics editing
      • VLC - multimedia file playback
      • Ogg - open video and audio codecs

      Development tools

      • Ruby on Rails - rapid web application development
      • Eclipse - integrated development environment

  • When I started working at the  MIT Artificial Intelligence Lab in 1971, I became part of a software-sharing community that had existed for many years

  • QUALity of Open Source Software (QUALOSS) is a Framework Programme 6 project funded by the European Commission. It is coordinated by CETIC and involves
  • eight partners from 5 European countries, namely Belgium, France, Germany, Spain and The Netherlands

  • ools and methods for assessing FOSS software, based on measuring data available on the Internet, have been a research issue the last decade. The name FOSS quality (and maturity) model or FOSS quality (and maturity) assessment method appear in the literature to describe such methods.



    spacerZA - 49,004,031 population (2011) - Country Area: 1,219,090 sq km


    spacerCapital City: Pretoria* - population 1,633,569  (2008)


    spacer6,800,000 Internet users Dec/10, 13.9% of the  population, per WWW.


    spacer4,095,280 Facebook users on June 30/11, 8.4% penetration  rate.

  • March 11th, 2011 - Update


    There is no disputing the fact that Opera has been the most popular web browser the past year. It now has a score of 58.36.


    Voting results for the five most popular web browsers

    Browser% usage# of votesPopularity factor

    •   Promotes the use of the FOSS model in African development. 
    •   Promotes the integration and adoption of FOSS in national policies 
    •   Coordinates Africa's Free Software efforts 
    •   Uses FOSSFA expertise to add value to FOSS initiatives in the continent 
    •   Acts as Africa's FOSS voice 
    •   Plays an interface role between international and continental FOSS efforts 
    •   Contributes FOSS applications towards the achievement of women empowerment, the Millennium Development Goals and sustainable development in Africa. 
    •   Promotes African FOSS expertise, creativity and industry 
    •   Partners with development organizations who share same goals with FOSSFA 

  • The Open Source Software Institute (OSSI) is a non-profit (501  c 6) organization comprised of corporate, government, academic and open source  community representatives whose mission is to promote the development and  implementation of open source software solutions within U.S. federal, state and  municipal government agencies and academic entities.
  • implementation of open source software solutions within U.S. federal, state and
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