Windows Legacy OS forum

General discussion

Old XP box is a go. Help me with security.

by white-bread / July 24, 2008 1:54 PM PDT

I need to tighten this thing up for the owner. What are your suggestions?
They must be:
a) stable
b) with source code fully available at no cost. (Think GPL and BSD licenses.)
c) with updates/CVS/builds always current
d) have a good track record.
Shareware and freeware are "no go!"
I will be checking every suggestion.

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What are you trying to do?
by Jimmy Greystone / July 24, 2008 2:51 PM PDT

What are you trying to do? Is this going to be a desktop system for someone or is it going to be some specialty system?

On Linux or the BSD's, it'd be easy to rattle off a lot of programs that meet your criteria, but not on Windows. Very few programs are distributed with source code, and even fewer will have a CVS/SVN repository, since very few people have any kind of build environment on Windows to make any use of it.

From the sound of things, you just want to be running Linux or one of the BSD's. If you're looking for security above all else, then consider OpenBSD. Just ignore the mailing lists, or you'll quickly discover that the chief developer, Theo de Raadt is an incredible tool. Otherwise, any of the other two major BSD players or Linux will do nicely.

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Already use.
by white-bread / July 24, 2008 3:11 PM PDT

I already use Linux and the BSD environments.
I am asking for an open source solution to protect a Window's machine that can be run from the same machine it is protecting.
It is someone else's desktop that I am trying to bring back to life.

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Good luck with that
by Jimmy Greystone / July 25, 2008 2:16 AM PDT
In reply to: Already use.

Good luck with that, because I'm betting you're not going to find anything.

There's always ClamWin for an open source virus scanner, but it doesn't do on-access scanning without the help of some other program. That's about all their is that I've ever come across.

The XP firewall is most likely based on FreeBSD's ipfw, since most of the rest of the Windows networking stack is adapted from FreeBSD. But there's no source included.

I think the best you're going to be able to manage on Windows is freeware with no source included, but you can always poke around on SourceForge and similar sites. Maybe you'll find something, and maybe you won't.

Besides, even if you had the full source code available, how many times have you actually taken a look at it personally? How many times have you read through the Linux kernel source, or even just the IPTables section of it? For that matter, how many times have you tried compiling a program on Windows? Unless you do this every single time you're about to use some new program, how exactly is a freeware program without any source different from a freeware program with source?

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Source code
by white-bread / July 25, 2008 4:03 AM PDT
In reply to: Good luck with that

I check the source code for programs each time I compile from ports, pkgsrc, or a tar.gz or bz2 file I download. I check the kernel source about once a week.
Compiled kde on windows recently. It didn't work. Compiled blackbox on windows, it did work.
How? I can tweak the compile options from within the script. Ditto for the Makefile.
IPtables is set for one host.

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You have a lot of free time
by Jimmy Greystone / July 25, 2008 4:18 AM PDT
In reply to: Source code

You have a lot of free time then that most of us don't.

In any case, check places like SourceForge. If you don't find anything there, or any similar sites, it's probably a reasonable assumption to assume it doesn't exist.

Also, KDE can be run on Windows, but you most likely need the Cygwin package for KDE 3.5. KDE 4.0 on should have native Windows ports at some point in the future.

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Source is easy to build.
by white-bread / July 25, 2008 2:48 PM PDT

I'm looking through sourceforge to find something. Code compiling is easy. Writing code is what takes time. Making adjustments to a Makefile doesn't take forever.

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Tell us more about this owner.
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / July 25, 2008 11:46 PM PDT

Whilst your discussion so far has been about Open Source, Linux, BSD and so on, (things I know nothing about), you don't explain why this owner has to go that route on a Windows machine.

Is that what they want, or do they want just a working system with firewall, AV and anti-spyware protection that is going to help protect their computer from malware/hacking?

Are they as comfortable with compiling/decompiling as you are? If not, why such in-depth requirements?

This is not a criticism, the information might help others come forward with ideas.

Mark

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Reasons
by white-bread / July 26, 2008 12:00 PM PDT

The computer needs to be returned to its original state when asked. Free of any libraries or hiden programs. Open source is good for this.
The owner uses windows and has no experience with Linux or BSD systems. An automatic program that I can configure for them would be good.
I just restored this and another computer of theirs with ntfs tools. I also pinpointed a reason for overheating on a laptop. All were done with open source tools.
They do not compile. I do. I would be doing the work for them. The system is limited to 256M. I need to use as little of this as possible for firewall and antivirus.

It isn't them going the route of open source, it is them going the route that they know will work from seeing how my system(s) work without trouble.

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