Monday, February 28, 2005

GMail Offers HTML View.

GMail has offered HTML view. (Not all users have it yet) You might ask ....

What's the difference between 'standard' view and 'plain HTML' view?

Standard view is what you'll see when you sign in to Gmail from a fully supported browser.In case you don't have access to a fully supported browser, you can now have access to Gmail using a basic HTML view, that is compatible with almost any browser. If you sign in to Gmail using a browser that isn't fully supported, you'll automatically be directed to the basic HTML view.

The basic HTML view is a little different than what you're used to because the following features aren't available are : Filter creation, Settings (Including Forwarding and POP), Spell checker, Keyboard shortcuts and Address auto-complete.

Here is how basic HTML views looks like : Preview.
Source : Here

Sunday, February 27, 2005

Nokia may invest $300m in Pakistan

Finland's Nokia cellular company has indicated to invest $300 million to set up its production plant in Pakistan during 2005.

However, informed sources said that Pakistan has been asked by Finland to early finalise a bilateral investment agreement to help Nokia phone company to invest $300 million within this year. Final round of talks between the two countries is expected to be held in Islamabad shortly to sign the agreement. Earlier, both side had met in Finland last year.

Read More : Here

Friday, February 25, 2005

Opera 8 Beta 2 Released

What a week ... first Firefox and now upgrade to Opera.

What is important to note that Gmail and Google Maps works flawlessly in this version, and Hotmail supposedly works better. The security fixes include Fix for IDN spoofing

The Final version of Opera 8 is expected to be released very soon by the end of this month.

Change Log
: Here
Download: Opera 8 Beta 2 (For Windows)
X-Posted at : Link

Mozilla Firefox 1.0.1 Officially Released.

Mozilla Firefox 1.0.1 has just been released.

This version fixes a few security holes and some other bugs. Firefox 1.0.1 is a "branch build" serving as an interim update to Firefox 1.0. It addresses critical security and performance issues that resulted after the release of Firefox 1.0. This build is NOT to be confused with recent Mozilla 1.0+ nightly "trunk" builds.

Best Practice:

Do not install it over previous version. Export your favorites first, backup any other data.Uninstall the current version, and then install the new one.

View: Release Notes
Download: Mozilla Firefox 1.0.1 (4.7MB)

President dotcoms

Its been a long time coming. The Prez of PK has a website and BBC reports he's thrown a little party to celebrate his dotcom day.

Designed by J Walter Thompson's web partner, its a cute PR excercise which offers an auto-bio, wallpapers [!], and the chance to see what emails he will respond to. Make the most of it, Prez! Think they've left something out? Hotline numbers anyone? ;-)

Thursday, February 24, 2005

Firefox Post 1.0 Updates Start Rolling.

The next beta of Firefox 1.0.1 (candidate builds) are done, probably will be released Tomorrow. The beta will include (much needed) large number of security patches plus about 900 bugfixes. Details and Download link for nightlies : Here

While you are at it you might want to read some IE7 related facts and speculation.

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Provincial Ministers do it better?

A classic 'mission' at Spider was to argue against official blocking of pornographic websites. Responsibility lies with parents, teachers and end users--not goverments. So this news comes as no surprise:

"Pakistan's Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunications has said that it has accepted defeat in its "battle" against pornographic material available on the Internet."

The good Minister persists that it is now up to Provincial governments to prevent prongraphic content from reaching users in their territory. I advise all rational people to refrain from throwing their hands up in frustration and instead say a little prayer that those officials have their plates full with disaster management, environmental conservation, education+health, and any other constructive activity where our taxes are spent well!

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Popup Trouble : First It was Firefox now IE

As if Firefox problem was not enough, now Microsoft Internet Explorer Pop-up Window Title Bar Spoofing Weakness has been discovered.

Internet Explorer is reported prone to a pop-up window title bar spoofing weakness.The weakness is reported to exist due to a flaw that manifests in script-initiated pop-up windows. This issue may be leveraged by an attacker to display false URI information in the title bar of an Internet Explorer pop-up dialog window. This may facilitate phishing style attacks; other attacks may also be possible.

The popup problem includes Microsoft Internet Explorer 6.0 SP2.

Exploit Code: Here
Source: Link

Friday, February 18, 2005

Microsoft to Recall Xbox Cords Due to Electrical Issue

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Microsoft Corp., the world's largest software maker, said on Thursday it will recall 14.1 million power cords for its Xbox video game console after a defect gave some users minor singe burns and scorched carpets.

Robbie Bach, chief Xbox officer for Microsoft, told Reuters the recall covered all Xboxes made for continental Europe before Jan. 13, 2004, and units made for the rest of the world before Oct. 23, 2003. Read the article.

Bill Gates: Microsoft created PC industry

According to an interview ABC News conducted with Microsoft CEO Bill Gates yesterday,according to the transcript Bill says, "We're responsible for the creation of the PC industry".

GATES: We're responsible for the creation of the PC industry. The whole idea of compatible machines and lots of software - that's something we brought to computing. And so it's a responsibility for us to make sure that things like security don't get in the way of that dream. You know, its individual empowerment, information at your fingertips - we need to drive that forward.

Well thats an Arguable statement !!! Whats your opinion?

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Firefox : 99 Days 25 Million Downloads.

Firefox has been downloaded over 25 million times since it's 1.0 release exactly 99 days ago.

The question is can it keep up the pace and tackle the increased threat of malware comming its way.

Visit :

Monitoring Students

In a country where students bunking classes is considered 'something that cannot be dealt with' by Pakistani teachers, perhaps something like this is needed?

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Internet Explorer 7 for Windows XP.

Today at RSA, Bill Gates talked about Internet Explorer 7. Betas of IE7 will be available this summer.

Details: Here

Saturday, February 12, 2005

Web-Browser Speed Benchmarks.

There is a speed war on the web. Browsers compete on many fronts; security, standards support, features and speed. Most people are aware of which major browser fails on three of these, but one of them is still open for grabs. Speed.

Many organisations and users try to claim that their browser is the fastest. The Opera site claims that Opera is The Fastest Browser on Earth!. The Mozilla site claims that Firefox 1.0 empowers you to browse faster (faster than what?). Mozilla itself is quoted as being an alternative to Microsoft IE and it's faster to boot. Apple's Safari pages claim that Safari loads pages more quickly than any other Mac web browser (although they failed to show any results for Opera, and their charts fail to show results for pages that contain images). Internet Explorer users often claim that they use it because of its speed, as the alternatives take longer to start and load pages.

Read: Browser speed comparisons
Results: Windows browsers | Linux browsers | Mac browsers

X-Posted at: Link : Changes in Commenting System.

The commenting system uses, has been modified.

It now lets you post comments without having to signup for an account or post anonymously instead you can just type in your name and, if applicable, your website address.

X-Posted at: Link

Thursday, February 10, 2005

Ghost in the CELL

Sony, IBM, and Toshiba reveal technical information on its forthcoming CELL processor.

Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. (SCEI), IBM, and Toshiba unveiled new details on its CELL processor at the International Solid State Circuits Conference (ISSCC) in San Francisco today. Positioned as the "first technical disclosure" on CELL, the presentation offered a glimpse of the makeup of this powerful and versatile processor.

The Cell processor, which will drive Sony's PlayStation 3, will run 10-times faster than current PC chips, its designers have said.

Read : Full Article

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Microsoft Security Bulletins for February 2005.

The thirteen Security Updates for February 2005 include several high-priority updates for Microsoft Windows that also affect Microsoft SharePoint, Microsoft Internet Explorer, and Microsoft Media Player technologies, has been released. If you dont want to download and patch individual updates, skip the following details and download the patches using Automatic Updates.

View : Details and Links of Individual Patches

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

Google Maps Beta Launched.

Google has released it's beta online mapping service.

Google Maps allows users in the U.S. to find location information, navigate through maps, and get directions quickly and easily.

Visit: Google Maps FAQ.
Visit: Google Maps Beta

Browser Exploit for NON-IE Browsers.

Most Mozilla-based browsers (Firefox 1.0, Camino .8.5, Mozilla 1.6, etc), Safari 1.2.5, Opera 7.54, Omniweb 5 are victim to a complex International Domain Name [IDN] spoof.

This new attack allows an attacker/phisher to spoof the domain/URLs of businesses. Every recent gecko/khtml based browser implements IDN (which is just about every browser except for Internet Explorer).

Crossposted at: Link (Read More for Details)
View: Advisory | Proof Of Concept (Use Non-IE Browsers for this)

Sunday, February 06, 2005

MSN Messenger W32/Bropia Worm Removal Tools.

MSN Messenger is under attack of W32/Bropia Worm that comes with a seductive name and download link. The user clicks on the link and gets the copy of attached worm for his PC. The worm can spread on the network and shared computers. The worm can disable the Anti-Virus software and then infect the Files in PC, It can also spread easily after it disables anti virus program.

Here are couple of sites with instructions on how to remove the worm:

View: Trend Micro Removal Instructions
View: Symantec Removal Tool

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Google Launches "LOCAL" Search.

Google has launched a new service for locating local businesses called Google Local.

Google Local, Google's search engine for locating neighborhood stores and services, based on zip (or postal code) or the name of a town or city.

Still marked as "Beta", and only searches for locations in the United States and Canada.

Google plans to expand its reach in due time. The company also expects to provide a way for businesses to add themselves directly to the search results.


Yahoo "contextual" search !!!

Yahoo is offering a new search service designed to help people find more-relevant content online. The Yahoo Y!Q service offers “contextual” search that analyzes the page being read and gives a list of related search results.Instead of starting a search from a text box, a person would search while reading a specific page.

The company, which has released the service in a test format, said it is making the coding available to Web designers to embed in their sites, so that the tool can search their pages. Yahoo is also offering versions of the tool for its news site and as a toolbar that readers can download and run on their browsers.

See Demo of Yahoo "contextual" search in Action : Link

Visit: Y!Q Beta Information Page
Visit: Yahoo! next
According to this source: "Security clearance has been given for the direct India-Pak fibre link between Amritsar and Lahore.

The Daily Times quoted the Pakistani Information Technology and Telecommunications minister Awais Ahmad Khan Leghari as saying that security clarance was needed for the formal approval of the project. He said that talks with India regarding the project is already going on and the link is likely to be set up soon.

Earlier, Pakistan Telecommunications Company Limited had been given the contract to prepare the feasibility report on the proposed fibre link. The project would be operational within six months and would cost between 150 million to 200 million rupees, to be shared equally by the two sides.

Experts believe that this proposed low-investment fibre link will strengthen the IT and telecom industry infrastructure and internet services in both India and Pakistan. (ANI) "

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

"The Network is the Computer" ...Sun to Launch Grid Computing.

Sun have announced their plans to offer businesses a simple way of doing I.T., by utilising the power of grid computing. For the price of $1 per cpu hour, business customers can tap into massive computer grids run by Sun.

Sun believe that by doing the service "on-demand" they can offer a more cost effective way of computing to businesses worldwide. The company claims to have thousands of CPUs accessible on a truly global scale; so far they have announced centers in Texas, Virginia, New Jersey and Scotland; the company plans to announce more new centers in the USA, Europe and Asia in 2005.

Read More: Here
View : Overview of NC05Q1
View: Sun Homepage

Google is now a domain registrar

Google is now an ICANN-accredited registrar of domain names, providing it with yet another potential line of expansion. The fast-growing search provider is approved to sell names in seven top-level domains (TLDs) including .com, .net, .org, .biz., info, .name and .pro.

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

MSN Search Launched

Microsoft has finally launched MSN Search, the long-awaited rival to Google. With Google launching numerous new services in the last few months, I doubt MSN Search will pose any threat to Google anytime soon.

After trying it out, I'm not happy with its results. Let us know what you all think!