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Microsoft to Change Practice for Selling Software and Subsequent Upgrades

Microsoft, which has previously offered a number of licensing options - often including inexpensive upgrades - is changing the way it licenses software to volume users, such as the Lab. As a result, Lab buyers of Microsoft Office, Project, Windows, Visio and other software will need to decide whether to pay an additional support fee to cover upgrades. Users who do not pay this additional fee will not be able to purchase upgrades as they have in the past. Most Lab staff will not need to purchase the additional support provided by "Software Assurance".
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Monthly Virus Alert: Klez Worm and Related Hoaxes Flourishing, Leading to Self-Inflicted System Problems

Last month hundreds of viruses and worms attempted to make their way into LBNL, but were stopped and deleted by the LBNL VirusWall. Most prevalent of all by far was the destructive Klez worm (variants E, G, and H), followed by the now very familiar Sircam, then PE-Magristr.B, then the Nimda worm/virus. Klez infects Windows systems and then goes to the address book and files stored on the machine and sends infected messages to others using the addresses it finds as the sender. However, LBNL users actually inflicted more damage on their systems last month than did viruses and worms did!
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What's New with the Lab's Basic Ordering Agreement for Buying Micron PCs?

The basic ordering agreement (BOA) which simplifies the process for buying "Lab standard" Micron PCs is frequently updated to meet the needs of Lab customers. In fact, the latest change was made this morning, when the default Windows operating system (OS) was updated to Windows XP. Here, in question-and-answer format, is a look at what's available in both standard versions and options.
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New Registration Procedure for On-Site Computer Training Classes

Do you get stuck on PowerPoint? Wonder where all the shortcuts are hiding in Word? Wish you could put together a persuasive presentation? If so, the Lab's on-site computer training program can help. The procedure for registering for the on-site classes has also been revamped.
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Backups Update: Mac Users to Migrate to New Veritas Backup System

The Computing Infrastructure Support (CIS) Department, which has deployed a more flexible system for providing centralized backups of UNIX systems, has completed testing the same system for backing up Macintosh computers. As a result, CIS will be switching from the "homegrown" Macdumps backup system to the new Veritas system. To introduce potential customers to the service, CIS is offering a one-month free trial, which will demonstrate both the features and the expected cost to the customer.
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LBLnet's Upgrade of DHCP Service a Success

LBLnet's recent upgrade of Lab-wide DHCP service is now complete. The Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) allows computers to obtain network configuration information automatically at boot-time.
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May 20 Brown Bag Lunch to Be Held on Security Vulnerabilities

Do you wonder what the vulnerability alerts you receive mean? Could your system be blocked from Internet access because of unpatched vulnerabilities? Come to the next Computer Protection Brown Bag event to find out. Jim Mellander of the Computer Protection Program will be the speaker at noon, Monday May 20, in the Bldg. 50 auditorium. Bring your lunch and your questions.

Vulnerability in dtspcd Needs to Be Fixed in UNIX/Linux Systems

UNIX and Linux system administrators and users -- a buffer overflow condition exists in the connection negotiation routine within the dtspcd daemon of the Common Desktop Environment (CDE). An attacker can exploit this vulnerability to execute arbitrary code with up to root privileges. dtspcd is a common service that runs in most versions of UNIX. It typically listens on port 6112/tcp. The risk that this vulnerability poses is high because it is remotely exploitable and is fairly easy to exploit. For more information about this vulnerability (including how to fix it), go to http://www.kb.cert.org/vuls/id/172583.

Lab Course on UNIX and Linux Security to Be Given on June 25

UNIX and Linux system administrators -- are your systems secure? Are you aware that the LBNL RPM requires you to take security training once a year? To help you in your effort to secure your UNIX and Linux systems, the LBNL Computer Protection Program is sponsoring another full-day course on UNIX security. This course will be held in the Bldg. 66 auditorium from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Tuesday, June 25.
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Agreement Allows Lab Employees to Take Upcoming Computer Security Courses at Los Alamos, Sandia Labs Without Enrollment Fees

Through a collaborative effort with other national laboratories, LBNL has been invited to participate in SANS security training to be held in Albuquerque and Los Alamos, N.M. "Securing Windows" will be offered June 10-14 and June 17-21; "Securing UNIX" will be offered June 17-21 and July 8-12. Enrollment fees will be waived. For more information, contact Gene Schultz, eeschultz@lbl.gov.

 
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Computing News is maintained by Jon Bashor.