Dear OpenBSD community, I'm a student for a MSc Advanced Networking degree. I have a little situation maybe you guys could give me some feedback on. The issue is that my module leader is refusing even to consider mentioning OpenBSD, or any BSD in introductory Linux course where the focus is on network services. DNS, iptables, Apache. It is a introductory course, with limited time. So it's understandable that one has to be level-headed on what's to go in as material in the course. My argument is only to have a reference to OpenBSD, PF, and maybe the jailing of named, when we go through the topics of iptables, and DNS. My professor (the module leader) argue that almost no one is using BSD, and those that does is probably 70+ and so it will soon die off, in a humours tone. In more serious tone, lack of applications. I'm a bit resigned by this attitude, because we are at a master level about networking. We learn about all the technologies surrounding routers, switches, wan, security, etc. As such I think that OpenBSD is really a bean to be counted when we learn about open/free software. So in relation to this, I would argue that OpenBSD is a excellent platform for networking services. I have said so in writing, and verbally only to be brushed off. I feel it's game over, at this point. But maybe you guys have some suggestion about good arguments that might persuade my professor? Cheers, TSLura. PS. This might be the wrong crowd, but I also argue for the documents on the internal web-learning facility to be published in PDF (ISO 32000 standard) (he insist on doc), and that Linux at least once should be mentioned as GNU/Linux.(system-tools/Kernel, to pay tribute). This is also met in the same way as my BSD arguments. Which I find strange, since my professor has developed a bit of stuff for the GNU/Linux platform.
People which like S/M (iptables) are able to follow only one argument - punch them. It's something which makes them happy :-D Now something more seriously. I think that it will be possible to write about iptables and provide (eg. as comment) "how-to" for OpenBSD in same time to show how easy can things be. And you can include this link http://www.ranum.com/security/computer_security/editorials/dumb/index.html maybe he is enough clever and not so fanatic that he will be able to find some signs of Linux in these times. So take it as a quest for you to learn something new (even if it's bad) so then you will have more arguments for your future in school, life or profession. -- http://www.openbsd.org/lyrics.html
-- Atentamente Andris Genovez Tobar / Sistemas COMERCIAL SALVADOR PACHECO MORA S.A. / DESDE 1945 Tecnologmas Cuenca, Av. 27 de Febrero y Jacinto Flores Esq. http://www.cspmsa.com Telifono. 593-7-2842388 ext 408 Fax. 593-7-2842388 ext 120 Celular: 593-97670874 PIN BB: 258F58F4 Jabber: email@example.com MSN: firstname.lastname@example.org Mail: email@example.com Personal: firstname.lastname@example.org http://www.crice.org
I suppose you could get that impression if your news from the outside world comes from skimming the headlines of glossy magazines. For your intro course this time around there may not be enough time to introduce new topics or literature, but your professor would find fairly recent literature, print and otherwise, that focuses on OpenBSD if he could be bothered to look in fairly mainstream places. A certain online bookstore named after warrior women comes to mind, just type the words you're interested in into the search field. - P -- Peter N. M. Hansteen, member of the first RFC 1149 implementation team http://bsdly.blogspot.com/ http://www.bsdly.net/ http://www.nuug.no/ "Remember to set the evil bit on all malicious network traffic" delilah spamd: 126.96.36.199: disconnected after 42673 seconds.
Well, you're absolutely right about OpenBSD, but you're wrong in worrying about this particular circumstance. Anyone doing anything important can't help but notice OpenBSD. Its reputation really jumps out when doing any search into networking or Operating Systems. When I was doing general searches a few years ago to see which of the several thousand Linuxes would be a good choice, I kept running into stuff mentioning OpenBSD. It didn't take long for me to forget about Linux. I have no regrets. So don't worry. The "right" people don't need any prodding, they will make it here on their own! Chris Bennett -- A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects. -- Robert Heinlein
here's a quick little seminar on professors and academia. it is very advanced and you may not understand it at first: - professors have a thing called 'tenure', meaning after a number of years working at an institution they have job security i.e. cannot be fired unless they fuckup massively. this is required to keep talented professors in the profession and allows them not to worry about e.g. having sporadic work product and being fired. - tenure is a double-edged concept in an educational setting because it is a hedging mechanism. it will retain those brilliant people who may have otherwise chosen another career path but it will also retain those people who were just bright enough to get their tenure. as with any boundary or line one can toe in life, many professors do just enough to get their tenure and not much more. - it is common for there to be a high degree of toadyism amongst academics. many people succeed by allying themselves with other people of reputation and are weak on their own deliverables. this is borne out in the content of their papers, their coauthors and who chooses to cite their papers. - some professors are quite talented when younger and then decay substantially when older, it depends heavily on the department. a person may have been brilliant once and it is simply not the case any longer, they have 'lost it'. conclusion: it is doubtful you can make this professor understand the relevance of BSD, so don't waste your time. many professors live in their own world and care little for what others have to say because of ego, tenure and toadyism. this person sounds like they're an idiot and that will likely be clear if you check the papers they have authored. if they are highly regarded, perhaps they are a talented toady or did great work when they were younger. don't focus so much on what the professor thinks and think for yourself.
One important point you forgot to mention. The influence on IT syllabus of the various arcane politics involved with Campus IT infrastructure.
I went through all of college without any classes mentioning OpenBSD and I think I turned out just fine.
"Bsd" is used in quite a lot of things. Think netapps appliances which run bsd. Think windows (2000 at least) which took the tcp stack from freebsd. There are a lot of such "appliances". Even cisco's ios owes its roots to bsd, iirc - at the very core of it, it has some form of sunos or an early predecessor of it, and sunos (not solaris) is bsd based. Tcpip itself was developed on bsd, and that deserves a mention, if only from a historical perspective (maybe this can be an argument to be used) -- Sent from my mobile device http://www.glumbert.com/media/shift http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tGvHNNOLnCk "This officer's men seem to follow him merely out of idle curiosity." -- Sandhurst officer cadet evaluation. "Securing an environment of Windows platforms from abuse - external or internal - is akin to trying to install sprinklers in a fireworks factory where smoking on the job is permitted." -- Gene Spafford learn french: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=30v_g83VHK4
sorry, some people are idiots, including professors. *BSD is not dying However, since this is a Network course which supposedly introduces you to routers and whatever, you could ask the prof if he knows much about Juniper routers. oh, yeah, before you ask the prof that question you might want to arm your self with info regarding JunOS. diana PS when I went to college BSD didn't exist and I turned out "okay"
The overly pedantic part of me wonders if you went to college pre-'77...
my introductory CS class was Algol-W, you figure out the timeline. ;-) diana
On Sun, 14 Feb 2010 08:11:21 -0700 (MST) Hehe. I did APL. Was gonna be the next best thing to sliced bread ;-) Dhu
> Hehe. I did APL. Was gonna be the next best thing to sliced bread ;-) I'm sure you meant to write ``bake-only sliced bread'' here! Miod
I did Algol-W, APL and SNOBOL (among others). I do not remember which order. There was also group on campus working on a multi-platform OS called THOTH written in Eh (but came after B and C appeared). I seem to recall the third hardware was running this OS in about 8 hours.
You can look at it this way: you will have a leg up on your classmates because you have done enough self-study to be at least aware of BSD, aand OpenBSD in particular. They, on the other hand (well, some of them at least), will equate Unix/Open Source with Linux.
Thank you all for the replies. I might do a lecture on my own, presenting OpenBSD. If I where to do that it, as a subsection, would be cool to give references to other institutions that are using OpenBSD and why they are using it. Why one would use OpenBSD, over eg. GNU/Linux. Now I would site preemptive security, code correctness, it's easy to use; enable daemons through rc.conf, pf, openssh, possibility for zfs in kernel?, good documentation, jailing of daemons. It would also be cool to highlight any specific snazzy functionality. Something that would get (MSc/geeky) people to think. "ooh, that's cool" particular in relation to networking. eg. I think the scrubbing of packets in PF is kinda cool, pftop, see the interruptcounter for the nic and serial console. :P Maybe something related to cryptography, or general network gear(routers, switches) , or any new cool feature in PF or something that's expensive with Cisco but cheap and good with *BSD. ipsec?, VoIP? cool feature in OpenSSH. .tsl
"When in doubt use brute force" Any melee weapon will do. -- Christiano Farina HAESBAERT Do NOT send me html mail.
When I did A-Level computer Science quite a few years ago (I don't know what the non-English equliveent of the A-Level would be, I don't even think there is an eqivilent in the American system as we have GCSE's then A-Levels then Uni in england...so here is a link http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_level ) I had people in my class who couldn't program and knew very little about firewalls and such like...it was a shock that very few of them had even built a computer and really understood things. I was no expert back then, but I had coded PHP, bits of C, knew bits of Linux, window server how DNS worked and such like. I had two teachers and one was off for 8 weeks with an operation and our other teacher just said carry on doing your work in his lessons, I usually ended up teaching the other people in the class what I thought they should learn. Many of them had trouble grasping ideas like Database normalisation and pascal was the language of choice and had trouble understanding little bits. I helped them through it and showed them bits of PHP and how it was similar to other languages and how they can move on to C and such like. Over the last few years I've been out with a few girls who are in one uni or other (I really should learn to not get involved with girls at uni) and whenever I meet their friends who are doing IT related degree's I always mention they should check out OBSD et al and give them tips on how to get in to the industry, what would look good on their CV. Of all my friends that go to uni to do IT related degrees, I don't think any of them know of OpenBSD...they get taught Linux in a module but hardly much. My point is, if you know something, share it. This isn't banking or finance,you don't hold "the keys" to get one up on people...talk to your class, hold something outside of normal lectures/seminars etc "help a brother out" as my friend would say. I dont think the "you have one up on your fellow students" argument is a good one, in fact I think that's rather ...
On Sun, 14 Feb 2010 02:40:05 +0000 It's the poor man's Apple, without all the caveats, controls and gotchas, but with a complete toolbox and manual. You can run it on anything that will run a WinDos (and then some), and you will get more reliability with better predictability than aforementioned fruit. It doesn't do Flash, or other major insecurity vectors like Steem, and when it's broke it gets fixed. And lastly, it is Free from encumbrance: you can use it in commercial or proprietary/secure applications, or to run your vibrator for that matter, without anyone telling you "what to do with it". Dhu (just offhand, eh.)
I can tell you that *BSD is alive and well, and if anything is thriving in the network, data centre, and hosting environments. A search of the NANOG mailing lists (anyone teaching networking should know what NANOG is), and the webhostingtalk.com forums (where many hosting providers participate) will show that people are running BSD for networking in production. Speaking of antiquated, the IPTables code was originally supposed to have been replaced by Nf-hipac back in 2005. IPTables is completely ineffective for large rule sets, due to the linear increase in resources required for each rule. Features like hashing of address lists, source-based rate-limiting, stateful failover, and synproxy are either missing or too immature for production use. Cheers, Han Hwei Woo
I think you nailed the primary issue. It's an introductory Linux course. If it were a introductory network services, firewalling, and web services course, you'd have a case. Do they also have introductory courses in ass wiping with Charmin You fail to mention the target audience for the class and curriculum. Is the goal to churn out folks with master's degrees that are as worthless as highschool diplomas (Sorry, comply with what the industry thinks they need?), or is the goal to churn out inidividuals with a wide range of And arguing with the professor is a good way to get an F for your efforts. If you think it's more important for students in this program to be well rounded, you need to have a chat with the department head. If this is largely a program for folks on a Master with no thesis track, don't bother. (Don't bother as in get a real job, and get out of the program, you're wasting your time). As for the ignorance of your professor... you can try and point out things like OS/X, JunOS, and WindRiver. But it sounds like he's already made What you think, *MIGHT* be relevant if you hang on, get your masters, and start teaching to pay for a PhD. *IF* this is a thesis oriented master's program, you need to have a chat with the department head. If this is a non-thesis oriented program either get a real job, or change to an MBA program. If this program was truly about research and individual thought, you would never have encountered this situation. Instead you're seeing that you're in the midst of a program where you need to Well, I don't know about everyone else here, but I'd like to know the university so I have an additional filter for discarding -- Chris Dukes
GNU/Linux.(system-tools/Kernel, to pay tribute). To paraphrase and parrot what others have said here, you may want to pick your fights wisely. If you do want something you could hit the prof over the head with, have a look at what Wikipedia says about genetic and functional unixes (unixen, unices): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unix-like#Categories Loonix^WLinux is a functional unix, not a genetic unix. All of the BSDs are functional *and genetic* unixes. Also, even if just to deflect FUD ( http://www.cs.vu.nl/~ast/brown/ ), an introductory Linux course (which is what you said this was) should at least mention where Linux came from and as such at least make a passing reference to the unix family tree. There's no need to ram every detail down people's throats, but maybe people ought to at least be aware of the family tree in the broad strokes and how Minix, Linux, Unix, BSD, Mac OS X, etc. are and are not related. Here's one simplified version that includes the essentials: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Unix_history-simple.png Similarly, in an advanced networking course, people maybe should at least be aware that IPtables didn't come out of nowhere and isn't the only game in town. Essentially FreeBSD's ipfw (which is still alive) begat Linux's ipfwadm and ipchains, which was succeeded by iptables/netfilter. On the BSD side meanwhile, there also was ipfilter, which the OpenBSD project replaced with pf. Okay, maybe people don't need to know that history and all of the obsolescent products, but people should at least know *of*: * ipfw ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ipfirewall ) * iptables ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iptables ) * pf ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PF_%28firewall%29 ) But see for yourself what to make out of the above, because you can't get much money back if my free advice turns out to be wrong. regards, --ropers
I'd venture that your professor isn't particularly well-educated if he thinks BSD is dead or dying from either a commercial or a pedagogical perspective. A considerable amount of literature on the subject of networking is written using the BSD codebase as reference (e.g. the Richard Stevens TCP/IP books), and I don't expect that anyone is going to turn around and tell you that the Linux people got to where they are by ignoring all of that literature and the code base around which it was written. Second, beyond the base of open source host networking stacks, the BSD code base has been extensively grafted into proprietary Unix implementations, not to mention serving as the foundation for dedicated network devices such as Junos. You might argue that Junos isn't as prominent in the market as Cisco, but there are a fairly considerable number of arguments against teaching using IOS implementation pedagogically, except perhaps as a long series of "gotcha" lessons. Third, BSD networking continues to be grafted into other systems. A perfectly good example of this is that Sun has ported BPF into the Solaris kernel to support firewall portability as one of recent extension and refactoring initiatives to improve its network performance and provide an alternate set of interfaces for portability of networking code (e.g. for kernel code, or as an alternative to write directly to DLPI or through libpcap for anything that can't be implemented via [*cough*] Berkeley sockets). The crux here is that the wisdom of acting as though *nix networking is a monoculture completely dominated by Linux (which in my opinion can both fail to be a monoculture in the way it needs to be and succeed in being a monoculture in ways it needs to curb) or will become one doesn't seem the only possible conclusion from examining the history or contemporary dynamics (and that's setting aside the rather material question of whether such a monoculture would be desirable in any case, given how important cycles of divergence ...
Dear All, I don't usually write an email for the mailing list. But when I hear your situation I decided to write. :) First of all, I completely support the comments of Bayard Bell. I'm also MS of Information Security student at CMU and I'm really sorry behalf of your professor if everything was true. From my point of view BSD would never die, because it is too powerful. Many modern operating systems borrowed their base code from BSD. Also the Jail's new TCP/IP stack that implemented in FreeBSD 8 is the most powerful isolation solution with high performance. I want to add few more comments on Bayard's comments. I want to you to look into following links just for the reference. It is telling something even for the dummies isn't it? I don't want to say anything more. http://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2009/05/kylin_new_chine.html http://www.freebsdnews.net/2009/05/29/china-chooses-freebsd-basis-secure-os/ I think the problem is not anyone can use BSD that easily. It requires from you higher level of knowledge. But in the other hand Linux is more user friendly. That's why the people argue nobody use BSD, I think. If nobody uses and it would be sooner die then Apple wouldn't port BSD port management system into the Mac OS X right? Also BSD still making Unix world moving forward, good examples is Solaris. Especially, BSD performs lot better in networking point of view and for me PF is the one of the best firewall solution you could go for freely if you understand what you are doing. I've used and tried almost all major distribution from Linux and my final choice became again BSD. We all know that Linux is started as a just kernel and later it became full operating system, but I don't argue with Linux is a good project in fact. I don't think that your professor used and tried BSD, I guess. Maybe it's difficult for the starters and the best thing is if you want to do something really valuable then go for BSD. If your professor is really fond of Linux person then you ...
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