Fred Avolio’s Musings Fred Avolio’s Musings on Security and Other Topics en Move to Blogger <P> Much of my older blog entries are still here, but I have moved to a <a href="" target="_blank">Blogger-based</a> blog. Over time all entries on this site will be moved there. Happy Anniversary Firewall ToolKit! <P> The TIS FWTK was delivered via FTP to DARPA 15 years ago today. The next day we delivered it to DUNSnet. We did change the firewall industry with its delivery. And then we changed firewall pricing as Steve Walker and I, doing a "back of the envelope" SWAG decided on $15K for software only, $18K with hardware. Other vendors, with pricing at over $50K dropped their prices within a week. <P> Best wishes to its daddy, Marcus Ranum. <P> It’s still the most fun I had in a job, my own consulting gig a close second. Read something historic at <a href="" target="_blank"> Firewall TookKit</a>. <P> As early as v1.0, the firewall toolkit had "application intelligence," also known as "application awareness," and "deep packet inspection." We just weren’t marketing guys. Touch as a PDA <P> I’ve mentioned in the past in this blog how I really rely on a Palm handheld computer. When I first <a href="" target="_blank">moved to Mac from Windows</a>, I said that one of my criteria was <blockquote> Interoperability with a Palm handheld. I use it a bunch for everything it does including the obvious (calendar, etc.) and the less obvious (eReader, Documents to Go, Expense). </blockquote> <P> I’ve used my Palm, with the aid of <a href="" target="_blank"> The Missing Sync for Palm OS</a>. It works… good enough. But, sometimes it drives me crazy. I have about 2500 entries in my address book. Sometimes it messes up, losing data. Sometimes it takes hours to sync. In fact, it might get caught in a situation where when I will start syncing at night, I wake up the next morning and find it is still going. I’m tired of it. I’m tired of trying to sync and finding that I have to interrupt it to take my Palm and go off to work.. the next morning. I don’t know if it is Apple’s iSync of The Missing Sync’s fault. I understand it is complex to do the mappings (categories on the Palm to groups on the Mac), but I don’t care. I want to stop dealing with it and just use it. <P>As I said previously <a href="" target=_blank">I don’t <em>really</em> want an iPhone</a>. But, <a href="" target=_blank"> iPod Touch and PDAs</a> made me see that there is a viable alternative. Yes, the iPod Touch is not sold <em>primarily</em> as a PDA, but it might just give me what I need and want. <P>(You wouldn’t know it from Apple. Mostly, all they talk about are the games and music, which are the things that make them money. But, I already have a 30G iPod. I need a more reliable PDA. I went crazy to try to figure out whether it had a Note pad application.) <P> Here’s what I need (and I think "need" is correct). First, the "must haves": <UL> <LI> Bible—I do regularly read the Bible and am used to having an electronic Bible in my Palm. The same company, <a href="" target=_blank">Olive Tree Bible Software</A>has a mobile product for the Touch. I do not want to have to depend on an Internet connection. <LI> ereader—I have numerous books I want to carry around. <a herf="" target=_blank">eReader has a free iPhone/Touch version</a>. <LI> iCal sync (including birthdays)—of course I want to sync with iCal. It claims to do it. <LI>Calculater—yes, of course. <LI>Address book sync—again, of course. </UL> <P> And "like to haves": <UL> <LI>wireless access—it has it. I want it for email and web. <LI>Notes or memos—I have Memos on my Palm. I don’t think there is anything that is a direct replacement. I am hoping that Notes are syncable. <LI>email—I have it with the Palm and want it with something new. The Touch has it. <LI> To do/iCal Tasks—I am not sure, but I think I read that the newest version of iCal for the Touch does include To Dos/Tasks. <LI>expense tracking—The little application that comes with the Palm is nice to track mileage and expenses and will produce a spreadsheet. It seems that there is a free app for this. <LI>Secret!—this product from <a href="" target="_blank">LinkeSOFT</a> stores all my confidential data encrypted with a password of my choice. It uses 128 bit IDEA encryption. I really depend on this to store my passwords. It looks like a free application, LockBox, will do this. Or,maybe one of the other applications mentoned in <a href="" target="_blank">Review: Secret keeper apps for the iPhone</a> at Macworld. </UL> <P> I have <a href="" target=_blank">Documents to Go</a> on my Palm, that reads and writes Microsoft Offices files. I don’t really use this much. I can do without. <P> So. I still don’t want an iPhone. I like my family plan with Verizon. But, I really would like an iPod Touch: not to replace my iPod, but to replace my Palm Computer. Hawaiian Shirts <P> My observation… not just for Fridays anymore. More on Mail and Gmail <P> In <a href="/weblog/e-mail/Mail-and-Gmail.html" target="_blank">Mail and Gmail</a>, I discussed the settings I used in Mail. Some are different than what Google recommends in <a href="" target="_blank">Recommended IMAP client settings</a>. I want to explain why. <P> First. <b>Drafts</b>. I did not select store messages on server as Google recommends. I have now changed that. Google recommends: "Store draft messages on the server > checked." I don’t usually leave draft messages around. I usually write and send. But, I think storing on the server is a <em>good thing</em>. If I am writing email and need to come back to the draft to finish later, I can do it from my Mail client or—if away from my computer—from the web interface. <P> <b>Sent</b>. Google recommends "Store sent messages on the server > do NOT check." I’m sticking with "DO Check." Google’s reason is that all email sent through their server will automatically be put in the Sent box. I believe this, but I am not sure of the harm in putting mail into Sent in the Mail application. Google suggests it will cause duplication of messages. I’ve not seen this. In Mail, I often <em>Move</em> a message from Sent into a project folder. For example, today I received an email message regarding an interview for a graduate school program. I replied to it. I was at my day job, so using the Gmail web interface. I labelled both the received message and the reply "Grad School. The messages were still in my Gmail Inbox, but labeled. So, I clicked, "Archive." The result when I got home and used Mail? The messages were in my "Grad School" folder. Brilliant. 🙂 <P> <b>Trash</b>. Google says "Move deleted messages to the Trash mailbox > do NOT check" and "Store deleted messages on the server > do NOT check." Google’s reasoning is that it makes no sense to delete. Google says, "Messages that are deleted from an IMAP folder (except for those in [Gmail]/Spam or [Gmail]/Trash) only have that label removed and still exist in All Mail." <P> But, (I assume) since that was written, Gmail <em>has</em> created a "Delete" button, which puts deleted messages in the Trash. There are some messages I do not wish to save. There are some messages no one wants to save. No matter how cheap disk space is. My set-up allows me to delete things I really want to delete, putting them in the Gmail Trash. . Further, they say "Do NOT save deleted messages to your [Gmail]/Trash folder because this will delete a message in all folders." Correct. When I delete I mean delete! <P> <b>Junk mail and spam</b>. Google says, "Do NOT enable your client’s junk mail filters. Gmail’s spam filters also work in your IMAP client, and we recommend turning off any additional anti-spam or junk mail filters within your client." The way I have things set up in Mail allows me to tag spam that Gmail’s spam checker misses and have Mail move it into the Spam folder. <P> No regrets about the move to Gmail nor about using Mail with Gmail. <P> <div class="mycomment"> <P> Now I remember why someone suggested <em>not</em> saving drafts on the server. Every time the draft automatically saves, you end up with another copy of the draft. You can see this in the screen shot I captured looking at <a href="/pics/Drafts.jpg" target="_blank">my Trash</a>. On the other hand it is just in <em>Trash</em>, and so will be deleted eventually. </div>