Wednesday, June 21, 2006

How To Find Ftp (The Easy Way)

I use google because its the best search engine en everyone can access .
The easiest search quote is "index of ..."
Some kind of examples are:

index of ftp/ +mp3
index of ftp/ +divx
index of ftp/ +"whateveryouwant"

Google has many operators that should help you to specify your search
USE EM
There are also lots of advanced operators available
here are a few:

cache:
link:
related:
info:
stocks:
site:
allintitle:
intitle:
allinurl:
inurl:

eg:
allintitle: "index of ftp/mp3"

try to combine things and maybe you'll find something.

How to Find a Remote IP

Method 1

To view someone's IP# when they send you hotmail email do this:
1) Click "Options" on the upper right side of the page.
2) On the left side of the page, Click "Mail"
3) Click "Mail Display Settings"
4) Under "Message Headers" select "Full" or "Advanced"
5) Click ok

Method 2
reg a dydns account and install the ip pointer, so each time you ping the host name you regestored

for example:
you regestor the host name myhost.dydns.com, then you keep a little software running on the target host. The little software will keep update your IP to dydns.com server.

so at your pc just start cmd, and ping myhost.dydns.com, it will give you the most updated ip address.

Method 3
neverender, what doesn't work for you? Simply type in nc -vvv -l -p 80 on your box, which will set it to listen in verbose mode on port 80. Then give them a link to your IP address (for example: 111.111.111.11) and tell them to type it in their browser. The browser should resolve the address as well as append port 80 automatically. Just make sure that your friend is not very computer literate.

Method 4
Just download a very simple server such as this one and install it on your comp. Then run it and give your ip to the person you want and tell them to connect to it through a browser. Your server will log their connection and you will get their IP.

link:http://www.download.com/Abyss-Web-Server/3000-2165-10283992.html?tag=lst-0-6


Other Ways
-www.imchaos.com and make a "spy poll" to put in ur profile, this will tell u the IP of anybody who answers ur poll
-originalicons.com there is a page for doin it (i dont like it, but it works)
-or irc


Here is a more detailed tutorial about using NetCat.

http://www.onlamp.com/pub/a/onlamp/2003/05/29/netcat.html

Windows users can download NetCat from here:

http://www.atstake.com/research/tools/network_utilities/

How to Bypass Web Filters

There are several occasions where you will be at a public te How to bypass web filters
terminal, and require access to a particular website that is blocked for some reason or another. How to bypass these restrictions is a very common question, and will be covered here.

Lets pretend for a moment that the Internet is made up of 26 websites, A-Z. The web filter blocks your browser from accessing sites X-Z, but not sites A-W. Simply make the browser think you’re going to A-
W. There are a variety of ways to do this:

Proxy Servers:
This is a list of http proxies. These sites may not be up forever, so you may need to search for “free http proxy” or “public proxy servers” or other similar terms.

Proxy server lists:
• http://www.aliveproxy.com
• http://www.multiproxy.org
• http://www.publicproxyservers.com/index.html
• http://www.tehbox.com/proxy
• http://www.proxz.com
• http://www.proxy4free.com/index.html
• http://free-proxies.com

Now that you have a list of proxies, you would open IE (internet explorer) and click on Tools > Internet Options > Connections > LAN Settings > Advanced. Enter the address and port of one of the servers from the list in the proper area (http) and make sure the “use a proxy server for your LAN” option is selected. Remember to replace the proxy and port at your terminal to the original when you're done.

*Note: Some proxies listed may not work, and this method may decrease your surfing speed. By trying various entries, you’ll find one that works, or works faster.

The infamous translation trick:
Go to a web page translation site and use their services to “translate a page to English” thus accessing the blocked page through their trusted site.

You’ll notice that several translation sites are blocked, but by using less popular ones, this method can still be effective. Here is a list of some translation services. Again, these sites may not be up forever, so you may need to search for them.

• http://babelfish.altavista.com
• http://world.altavista.com
• http://translation.langenberg.com
• http://freetranslation.com/web.thm

Url Scripting:



Url scripting is the easiest method. It works on a select few web filters and is based on the same principal as the translation trick. By typing and address like “www.yahoo.com@www.restricted_site.com the filter will not go into effect as it recognizes the trusted site (in this case yahoo.com)

Other tricks:
Simply open the command prompt and type:
Ping restricted.com ? restricted.com obviously being the restricted site
At this point you can take down the IP address (ex. 216.109.124.73) and enter it into the browser. If access to the command prompt is also restricted, see “How to bypass restrictions to get to the command prompt.” If this article has been taken from information leak, then know that it involves anything from opening the browser, selecting view > source, then saving it as X.bat and opening it to opening a folder or browser and typing in the location of cmd.exe depending on the OS. I will not go into further, as this a completely different topic.

Use https://restrictedsite.com as referring to it as a secured site may confuse the filter.

Note: These are ancient methods that many new filters defend against, but still may be applicable in your situation. If not, a little history never hurt anyone.

Web based Proxies:
Another one of the easier, yet effective methods include web based proxies. These are simple in the fact that you just enter the restricted address and surf! Some of these have some restrictions, like daily usage limits, etc but you can also use another proxy (perhaps one that sucks, like a text only) to bypass their restrictions as well. Here is a list of some:

• http://proxify.com]http://proxify.com
• http://www.anonymizer.com/index.cgi]http://www.anonymizer.com/index.cgi
• http://www.guardster.com/]http://www.guardster.com/
• http://anonymouse.ws/anonwww.html]http://anonymouse.ws/anonwww.html
• http://www.the-cloak.com/login.html]http://www.the-cloak.com/login.html
• https://www.megaproxy.com/freesurf]https://www.megaproxy.com/freesurf
• http://www.anonymizer.ru]http://www.anonymizer.ru
• https://nadaily.com/cgi-bin/nph-proxyb.cgi]https://nadaily.com/cgi-bin/nph-proxyb.cgi
• http://www.userbeam.de/cgi-bin/nph-userbeam.cgi]http://www.userbeam.de/cgi-bin/nph-userbeam.cgi
• http://www.free2.surffreedom.com/nph-free.cgi]http://www.free2.surffreedom.com/nph-free.cgi

Proxy Programs:
There are many proxy programs that allow you to surf anonymously that are more or less based on the same topics we’ve covered here. I’ve added them just to cover the topic thoroughly:

• http://www.hotscripts.com/Detailed/28480.html]http://www.hotscripts.com/Detailed/28480.html
• http://www.inetprivacy.com/a4proxy/anonymous-grc.htm]http://www.inetprivacy.com/a4proxy/anonymous-grc.htm
• http://www.orangatango.com/home/index.ie.html]http://www.orangatango.com/home/index.ie.html
• http://www.steganos.com]http://www.steganos.com
• http://www.anonymization.net]http://www.anonymization.net ? toolbar that requires admin rights to install

Making your own CGI proxy server:

Making your own proxy server may come in handy, but I personally find that simply uploading a txt file/w a list of proxies to a free host makes for a much easier and headache free solution. If you don’t know PERL, there is code out there to help you set it up. Check out these sites for more info:

• http://httpbridge.sourceforge.net]http://httpbridge.sourceforge.net
• http://www.jmarshall.com/tools/cgiproxy]http://www.jmarshall.com/tools/cgiproxy
• http://www.manageability.org/blog/stuff/open-source-personal-proxy-servers-written-in-java/view]http://www.manageability.org/blog/stuff/op...en-in-java/view



Admin Access:
When all else fails, you can simply take over the PC and alter or delete the damn filter. This method varies according to the OS (operating system) you are dealing with. Please see “Hacking Windows NT” for more information. If this tutorial has been taken from information leak, then I will go as far as to say it involves booting the PC in another OS, copying the SAM file and cracking it using a program like saminside or LC5 rather than start a whole new topic within one.

Formatting an HDD when Fdisk Won't Work

This was originally posted by andro11meda in Hardware and Networking Support. It worked so well for me on a problem-computer that I was working on that I had to post it in tutorials. Thanks andro11meda!!


This is my favorite way to wipe it clean:

CAUTION: This debug script is for advanced users only. Its Purpose is to remove all formatting and partitioning information from your hard disk when FDISK is unable to do so. THIS WILL REMOVE ALL DATA AND PROGRAMS FORM THE DRIVE.

1. Create a MSDOS bood disk with Debug

2. At DOS command prompt type the following: Debug[Enter] (Where enter is to press the enter key once)

NOTE: Type the following bolded text only. You will recieve an error if you type anything other than the bold text. The non-bolded text represents what will appear on you screen once you press [Enter] after each command.

-F 200 L1000 0 [Enter]
-A CS:100 [Enter]
xxxx:0100 MOV AX,301 [Enter]
xxxx:0103 MOV BX,200 [Enter]
xxxx:0106 MOV CX,1 [Enter]
xxxx:0109 MOV DX,80 [Enter]

NOTE: ( --- "80" for hd0, "81" for hd1)

xxxx:010c INT 13 [Enter]
xxxx: 010e INT 20 [Enter]
xxxx: 0110 [Enter]

-G [Enter]
"Program terminated normally"

3. Turn off the computer. On the next startup the hard drive will need to be partitioned and formatted.

How to Setup FTP

Setting Up A Ftp:


Well, since many of us have always wondered this, here it is. Long and drawn out. Also, before attempting this, realize one thing; You will have to give up your time, effort, bandwidth, and security to have a quality ftp server.
That being said, here it goes. First of all, find out if your IP (Internet Protocol) is static (not changing) or dynamic (changes everytime you log on). To do this, first consider the fact if you have a dial up modem. If you do, chances are about 999 999 out of 1 000 000 that your IP is dynamic. To make it static, just go to a place like h*tp://www.myftp.org/ to register for a static ip address.

You'll then need to get your IP. This can be done by doing this:
Going to Start -> Run -> winipcfg or www.ask.com and asking 'What is my IP?'

After doing so, you'll need to download an FTP server client. Personally, I'd recommend G6 FTP Server, Serv-U FTPor Bullitproof v2.15 all three of which are extremely reliable, and the norm of the ftp world.
You can download them on this site: h*tp://www.liaokai.com/softw_en/d_index.htm

First, you'll have to set up your ftp. For this guide, I will use step-by-step instructions for G6. First, you'll have to go into 'Setup -> General'. From here, type in your port # (default is 21). I recommend something unique, or something a bit larger (ex: 3069). If you want to, check the number of max users (this sets the amount of simultaneous maximum users on your server at once performing actions - The more on at once, the slower the connection and vice versa).

The below options are then chooseable:
-Launch with windows
-Activate FTP Server on Start-up
-Put into tray on startup
-Allow multiple instances
-Show "Loading..." status at startup
-Scan drive(s) at startup
-Confirm exit

You can do what you want with these, as they are pretty self explanatory. The scan drive feature is nice, as is the 2nd and the last option. From here, click the 'options' text on the left column.

To protect your server, you should check 'login check' and 'password check', 'Show relative path (a must!)', and any other options you feel you'll need. After doing so, click the 'advanced' text in the left column. You should then leave the buffer size on the default (unless of course you know what you're doing ), and then allow the type of ftp you want.

Uploading and downloading is usually good, but it's up to you if you want to allow uploads and/or downloads. For the server priority, that will determine how much conventional memory will be used and how much 'effort' will go into making your server run smoothly.

Anti-hammering is also good, as it prevents people from slowing down your speed. From here, click 'Log Options' from the left column. If you would like to see and record every single command and clutter up your screen, leave the defaults.

But, if you would like to see what is going on with the lowest possible space taken, click 'Screen' in the top column. You should then check off 'Log successful logins', and all of the options in the client directry, except 'Log directory changes'. After doing so, click 'Ok' in the bottom left corner.

You will then have to go into 'Setup -> User Accounts' (or ctrl & u). From here, you should click on the right most column, and right click. Choose 'Add', and choose the username(s) you would like people to have access to.

After giving a name (ex: themoonlanding), you will have to give them a set password in the bottom column (ex: wasfaked). For the 'Home IP' directory, (if you registered with a static server, check 'All IP Homes'. If your IP is static by default, choose your IP from the list. You will then have to right click in the very center column, and choose 'Add'.

From here, you will have to set the directory you want the people to have access to. After choosing the directory, I suggest you choose the options 'Read', 'List', and 'Subdirs', unless of course you know what you're doing . After doing so, make an 'upload' folder in the directory, and choose to 'add' this folder seperately to the center column. Choose 'write', 'append', 'make', 'list', and 'subdirs'. This will allow them to upload only to specific folders (your upload folder).

Now click on 'Miscellaneous' from the left column. Choose 'enable account', your time-out (how long it takes for people to remain idle before you automatically kick them off), the maximum number of users for this name, the maximum number of connections allowed simultaneously for one ip address, show relative path (a must!), and any other things at the bottom you'd like to have. Now click 'Ok'.
**Requested**


From this main menu, click the little boxing glove icon in the top corner, and right click and unchoose the hit-o-meter for both uploads and downloads (with this you can monitor IP activity). Now click the lightning bolt, and your server is now up and running.

Post your ftp info, like this:

213.10.93.141 (or something else, such as: 'f*p://example.getmyip.com')

User: *** (The username of the client)

Pass: *** (The password)

Port: *** (The port number you chose)

So make a FTP and join the FTP section


Listing The Contents Of A Ftp:

Listing the content of a FTP is very simple.
You will need FTP Content Maker, which can be downloaded from here:
ht*p://www.etplanet.com/download/application/FTP%20Content%20Maker%201.02.zip

1. Put in the IP of the server. Do not put "ftp://" or a "/" because it will not work if you do so.
2. Put in the port. If the port is the default number, 21, you do not have to enter it.
3. Put in the username and password in the appropriate fields. If the login is anonymous, you do not have to enter it.
4. If you want to list a specific directory of the FTP, place it in the directory field. Otherwise, do not enter anything in the directory field.
5. Click "Take the List!"
6. After the list has been taken, click the UBB output tab, and copy and paste to wherever you want it.


If FTP Content Maker is not working, it is probably because the server does not utilize Serv-U Software.

If you get this error message:
StatusCode = 550
LastResponse was : 'Unable to open local file test-ftp'
Error = 550 (Unable to open local file test-ftp)
Error = Unable to open local file test-ftp = 550
Close and restart FTP Content Maker, then try again.




error messages:

110 Restart marker reply. In this case, the text is exact and not left to the particular implementation; it must read: MARK yyyy = mmmm Where yyyy is User-process data stream marker, and mmmm server's equivalent marker (note the spaces between markers and "=").
120 Service ready in nnn minutes.
125 Data connection already open; transfer starting.
150 File status okay; about to open data connection.
200 Command okay.
202 Command not implemented, superfluous at this site.
211 System status, or system help reply.
212 Directory status.
213 File status.
214 Help message. On how to use the server or the meaning of a particular non-standard command. This reply is useful only to the human user.
215 NAME system type. Where NAME is an official system name from the list in the Assigned Numbers document.
220 Service ready for new user.
221 Service closing control connection. Logged out if appropriate.
225 Data connection open; no transfer in progress.
226 Closing data connection. Requested file action successful (for example, file transfer or file abort).
227 Entering Passive Mode (h1,h2,h3,h4,p1,p2).
230 User logged in, proceed.
250 Requested file action okay, completed.
257 "PATHNAME" created.
331 User name okay, need password.
332 Need account for login.
350 Requested file action pending further information.
421 Too many users logged to the same account
425 Can't open data connection.
426 Connection closed; transfer aborted.
450 Requested file action not taken. File unavailable (e.g., file busy).
451 Requested action aborted: local error in processing.
452 Requested action not taken. Insufficient storage space in system.
500 Syntax error, command unrecognized. This may include errors such as command line too long.
501 Syntax error in parameters or arguments.
502 Command not implemented.
503 Bad sequence of commands.
504 Command not implemented for that parameter.
530 Not logged in.
532 Need account for storing files.
550 Requested action not taken. File unavailable (e.g., file not found, no access).
551 Requested action aborted: page type unknown.
552 Requested file action aborted. Exceeded storage allocation (for current directory or dataset).
553 Requested action not taken. File name not allowed.


 Active FTP vs. Passive FTP, a Definitive Explanation

Introduction
One of the most commonly seen questions when dealing with firewalls and other Internet connectivity issues is the difference between active and passive FTP and how best to support either or both of them. Hopefully the following text will help to clear up some of the confusion over how to support FTP in a firewalled environment.

This may not be the definitive explanation, as the title claims, however, I've heard enough good feedback and seen this document linked in enough places to know that quite a few people have found it to be useful. I am always looking for ways to improve things though, and if you find something that is not quite clear or needs more explanation, please let me know! Recent additions to this document include the examples of both active and passive command line FTP sessions. These session examples should help make things a bit clearer. They also provide a nice picture into what goes on behind the scenes during an FTP session. Now, on to the information...



The Basics
FTP is a TCP based service exclusively. There is no UDP component to FTP. FTP is an unusual service in that it utilizes two ports, a 'data' port and a 'command' port (also known as the control port). Traditionally these are port 21 for the command port and port 20 for the data port. The confusion begins however, when we find that depending on the mode, the data port is not always on port 20.



Active FTP
In active mode FTP the client connects from a random unprivileged port (N > 1024) to the FTP server's command port, port 21. Then, the client starts listening to port N+1 and sends the FTP command PORT N+1 to the FTP server. The server will then connect back to the client's specified data port from its local data port, which is port 20.

From the server-side firewall's standpoint, to support active mode FTP the following communication channels need to be opened:

FTP server's port 21 from anywhere (Client initiates connection)
FTP server's port 21 to ports > 1024 (Server responds to client's control port)
FTP server's port 20 to ports > 1024 (Server initiates data connection to client's data port)
FTP server's port 20 from ports > 1024 (Client sends ACKs to server's data port)


In step 1, the client's command port contacts the server's command port and sends the command PORT 1027. The server then sends an ACK back to the client's command port in step 2. In step 3 the server initiates a connection on its local data port to the data port the client specified earlier. Finally, the client sends an ACK back as shown in step 4.

The main problem with active mode FTP actually falls on the client side. The FTP client doesn't make the actual connection to the data port of the server--it simply tells the server what port it is listening on and the server connects back to the specified port on the client. From the client side firewall this appears to be an outside system initiating a connection to an internal client--something that is usually blocked.



Active FTP Example
Below is an actual example of an active FTP session. The only things that have been changed are the server names, IP addresses, and user names. In this example an FTP session is initiated from testbox1.slacksite.com (192.168.150.80), a linux box running the standard FTP command line client, to testbox2.slacksite.com (192.168.150.90), a linux box running ProFTPd 1.2.2RC2. The debugging (-d) flag is used with the FTP client to show what is going on behind the scenes. Everything in red is the debugging output which shows the actual FTP commands being sent to the server and the responses generated from those commands. Normal server output is shown in black, and user input is in bold.

There are a few interesting things to consider about this dialog. Notice that when the PORT command is issued, it specifies a port on the client (192.168.150.80) system, rather than the server. We will see the opposite behavior when we use passive FTP. While we are on the subject, a quick note about the format of the PORT command. As you can see in the example below it is formatted as a series of six numbers separated by commas. The first four octets are the IP address while the second two octets comprise the port that will be used for the data connection. To find the actual port multiply the fifth octet by 256 and then add the sixth octet to the total. Thus in the example below the port number is ( (14*256) + 178), or 3762. A quick check with netstat should confirm this information.

testbox1: {/home/p-t/slacker/public_html} % ftp -d testbox2
Connected to testbox2.slacksite.com.
220 testbox2.slacksite.com FTP server ready.
Name (testbox2:slacker): slacker
---> USER slacker
331 Password required for slacker.
Password: TmpPass
---> PASS XXXX
230 User slacker logged in.
---> SYST
215 UNIX Type: L8
Remote system type is UNIX.
Using binary mode to transfer files.
ftp> ls
ftp: setsockopt (ignored): Permission denied
---> PORT 192,168,150,80,14,178
200 PORT command successful.
---> LIST
150 Opening ASCII mode data connection for file list.
drwx------ 3 slacker users 104 Jul 27 01:45 public_html
226 Transfer complete.
ftp> quit
---> QUIT
221 Goodbye.


Passive FTP
In order to resolve the issue of the server initiating the connection to the client a different method for FTP connections was developed. This was known as passive mode, or PASV, after the command used by the client to tell the server it is in passive mode.

In passive mode FTP the client initiates both connections to the server, solving the problem of firewalls filtering the incoming data port connection to the client from the server. When opening an FTP connection, the client opens two random unprivileged ports locally (N > 1024 and N+1). The first port contacts the server on port 21, but instead of then issuing a PORT command and allowing the server to connect back to its data port, the client will issue the PASV command. The result of this is that the server then opens a random unprivileged port (P > 1024) and sends the PORT P command back to the client. The client then initiates the connection from port N+1 to port P on the server to transfer data.

From the server-side firewall's standpoint, to support passive mode FTP the following communication channels need to be opened:

FTP server's port 21 from anywhere (Client initiates connection)
FTP server's port 21 to ports > 1024 (Server responds to client's control port)
FTP server's ports > 1024 from anywhere (Client initiates data connection to random port specified by server)
FTP server's ports > 1024 to remote ports > 1024 (Server sends ACKs (and data) to client's data port)



In step 1, the client contacts the server on the command port and issues the PASV command. The server then replies in step 2 with PORT 2024, telling the client which port it is listening to for the data connection. In step 3 the client then initiates the data connection from its data port to the specified server data port. Finally, the server sends back an ACK in step 4 to the client's data port.

While passive mode FTP solves many of the problems from the client side, it opens up a whole range of problems on the server side. The biggest issue is the need to allow any remote connection to high numbered ports on the server. Fortunately, many FTP daemons, including the popular WU-FTPD allow the administrator to specify a range of ports which the FTP server will use. See Appendix 1 for more information.

The second issue involves supporting and troubleshooting clients which do (or do not) support passive mode. As an example, the command line FTP utility provided with Solaris does not support passive mode, necessitating a third-party FTP client, such as ncftp.

With the massive popularity of the World Wide Web, many people prefer to use their web browser as an FTP client. Most browsers only support passive mode when accessing ftp:// URLs. This can either be good or bad depending on what the servers and firewalls are configured to support.



Passive FTP Example
Below is an actual example of a passive FTP session. The only things that have been changed are the server names, IP addresses, and user names. In this example an FTP session is initiated from testbox1.slacksite.com (192.168.150.80), a linux box running the standard FTP command line client, to testbox2.slacksite.com (192.168.150.90), a linux box running ProFTPd 1.2.2RC2. The debugging (-d) flag is used with the FTP client to show what is going on behind the scenes. Everything in red is the debugging output which shows the actual FTP commands being sent to the server and the responses generated from those commands. Normal server output is shown in black, and user input is in bold.

Notice the difference in the PORT command in this example as opposed to the active FTP example. Here, we see a port being opened on the server (192.168.150.90) system, rather than the client. See the discussion about the format of the PORT command above, in the Active FTP Example section.

testbox1: {/home/p-t/slacker/public_html} % ftp -d testbox2
Connected to testbox2.slacksite.com.
220 testbox2.slacksite.com FTP server ready.
Name (testbox2:slacker): slacker
---> USER slacker
331 Password required for slacker.
Password: TmpPass
---> PASS XXXX
230 User slacker logged in.
---> SYST
215 UNIX Type: L8
Remote system type is UNIX.
Using binary mode to transfer files.
ftp> passive
Passive mode on.
ftp> ls
ftp: setsockopt (ignored): Permission denied
---> PASV
227 Entering Passive Mode (192,168,150,90,195,149).
---> LIST
150 Opening ASCII mode data connection for file list
drwx------ 3 slacker users 104 Jul 27 01:45 public_html
226 Transfer complete.
ftp> quit
---> QUIT
221 Goodbye.


Summary
The following chart should help admins remember how each FTP mode works:

Active FTP :
command : client >1024 -> server 21
data : client >1024 <- server 20

Passive FTP :
command : client >1024 -> server 21
data : client >1024 -> server >1024

A quick summary of the pros and cons of active vs. passive FTP is also in order:

Active FTP is beneficial to the FTP server admin, but detrimental to the client side admin. The FTP server attempts to make connections to random high ports on the client, which would almost certainly be blocked by a firewall on the client side. Passive FTP is beneficial to the client, but detrimental to the FTP server admin. The client will make both connections to the server, but one of them will be to a random high port, which would almost certainly be blocked by a firewall on the server side.

Luckily, there is somewhat of a compromise. Since admins running FTP servers will need to make their servers accessible to the greatest number of clients, they will almost certainly need to support passive FTP. The exposure of high level ports on the server can be minimized by specifying a limited port range for the FTP server to use. Thus, everything except for this range of ports can be firewalled on the server side. While this doesn't eliminate all risk to the server, it decreases it tremendously.

Anonymity

I can see you hiding in the shadows over there and so can the logs of all the web sites, FTP servers and other nooks and crannies you visit on the web. The sort of information gathered by these logs and which is available to the webmasters of the sites you visit include the address of the previous site you visited, your IP address, your computer's ID name, your physical location and the name of your ISP along with less personal details such as the operating system you're using and your screen resolution. If someone was snooping through your dustbin to gather information on consumer trends or tracking your every move to see where it is you go everyday you wouldn't be too chuffed would you. Well the web is no different, it's still an invasion of privacy and a threat to security and you don't have to put up with it.

Proxy servers:
Every time you visit a web site, detailed information about your system is automatically provided to the webmaster. This information can be used by hackers to exploit your computer or can be forwarded to the market research departments of consumer corporations who by tracking your activities on the internet are better equipped to direct more relevant spam at you. Your best defence against this is to use what is known as a proxy server, which will hide revealing information from the web sites you visit, allowing you to surf the web anonymously. These work by altering the way in which your browser retrieves web pages or connects to remote servers. With a proxy server set up, whenever you 'ask' IE or Netscape to look at a web page, the request is first sent through an external server which is completely independent of your ISP's servers. This third party server then does the requesting on your behalf so that it appears that the request came from them rather than you and your real IP address is never disclosed to the sites you visit. There is nothing to download and the whole process takes less than a minute.

There are two different ways to use proxy servers and both have their advantages and disadvantages. The first method is to use a web based service. What this involves is visiting the proxy's home page each time you want to browse a web site anonymously. The core component of such a system is the dialog box where you enter the address of the web site you want to visit. Each time you enter the URL of the site you want to browse via the proxy into this box, your personal information, IP address and so on is first encrypted before being sent to the site allowing you to maintain your anonymity. Two of the best examples of this type of web based proxy service are Code:
hxxp://www.rewebber.com/
and hxxp://www.anonymizer.com/.

Obviously one disadvantage of using a web based service like Rewebber or Anonymizer, however, is that you have to visit the proxies home page each time you want to surf anonymously. You could choose to select this page as your default home page, but it's still quite awkward if you're forever site hopping at the speed of light. The second main 'con' is that you often have to put up with extra adverts on the pages you visit. These are automatically inserted into the pages by the proxy - they have to pay for service somehow. More sophisticated and convenient solutions are also on offer yet they come with a price tag.

The second method you can use to protect your privacy via a proxy server involves adjusting the settings of your web browser so that you can surf anonymously without having to visit the home page of your proxy each time. To do this you will first need to know the name of your proxy server and the port number it uses. This information can be gleaned from either a public proxy server list or the FAQ referring to a private subscription based service. Once you have the name of the proxy server you wish to use, select 'Internet Options' from the 'Tools' menu of your browser. Now select 'Connections' followed by 'Settings' and tick the 'use a proxy server' check box. To finish the job all you have to do now is enter the name of the server in the 'address' box, the port which it uses in the 'port' box and go forth and surf anonymously.

Free, manual proxy servers as advertised on anonymity sites, if you can find one at all, are likely to be highly oversubscribed, and as a result the speed at which they retrieve web pages can deteriorate. In which case you can go in pursuit of a public proxy server list and select an alternative from it, which can then be set up manually. To locate such a list you can investigate sites such as Code:
hxxp://www.proxys4all.com/

however, this method isn't problem free either, so before you get too carried away and go jumping on the anonymity bandwagon there are a few things you should be aware of. It's very easy to use proxies to protect your privacy, but often the disadvantages of using them far out weigh the benefits. You see, the problem is that, like the proxy servers provided Rewebber et al, free, public proxies are nearly all over subscribed and so they can slow down web browsing considerably. Digging out fast reliable proxy servers is an art form in itself and is a skill which takes considerable practice. You could find a list of public proxy servers and then experiment with each one until you find one that runs at a reasonable speed, but this can be very time consuming and frustrating. Instead, your search would be much more efficient if you got a dedicated program to carry out this task for you. There are literally dozens of proxy seeking programs around which can do just that, and many of them are available as freeware. What these do is scan the internet for public proxy servers. These servers are then tested for speed and anonymity (not all of them are truly anonymous, even if they claim to be!) and once you find one which suits your requirements you can select it as your default proxy with the click of a button.

One of the most significant advantages of using an automated tool to locate proxy servers is that you do not have to keep editing your proxy settings manually each time you wish to try out a new one. Instead, what you do is enter 'localhost' or '127.0.0.1' into the 'address' box and '8088' into the 'port' box of your browser's proxy settings menu and then forget about it. All future proxy switching is then orchestrated from within your proxy seeking software, which subsequently relays the information to your browser or whatever type of application you are attempting to make anonymous. For those of you who are curious 'localhost' and the IP address '127.0.0.1' are the names by which every computer on the internet refers to itself.
Here's a good selection of links, which should help you to get started - Code:
hxxp://www.a4proxy.com/ Anonymity 4 Proxy
hxxp://www.helgasoft.com/hiproxy/ Hi Proxy
hxxp://www.proxy-verifier.com/ Proxy Verifier
hxxp://www.photono-software.de/ Stealther.

You may find that even when using these programs you have difficulty finding good proxy servers. It is for this reason that many people choose only to use proxy servers temporarily whilst doing something which may land them in trouble with their ISP, or in a worst case scenario with the law. The most obvious example of a situation in which you would want to cover your tracks is when scanning for public FTP servers and subsequently uploading to them. Most other net activities are unlikely to incur serious consequences so under these circumstances you can safely surf the web without a proxy. If you're really serious about protecting your privacy, however, your best bet is probably to invest in a dedicated, stable proxy such as the ones offered by Code:
hxxp://www.ultimate-anonymity.com/ Ultimate Anonymity


These aren't free, but may be worth the expense if you aren't keen on continuously switching proxy servers.

Before splashing out though it may be worth checking if your current ISP has a proxy server of its own which you can use. These aren't there to help you to commit cyber crimes and get away with it, they actually have a legitimate purpose as well - otherwise they wouldn't exist. You see, proxy servers were originally designed to help speed up web page loading times. Proxy servers contain a cache of all the web pages which have been requested via the browsers of the people using the proxy. When someone surfs the web using a proxy, the proxy first checks to see if it already has a copy of the web page stored in its cache. If this version of the page is bang up to date, it is sent to your computer and appears in your browser. If the page found in the cache of the proxy server is older than the one stored on the server hosting the page, a new request to the web server is made and the page is updated in the cache of the proxy before being sent to you. Because these servers use very fast internet connections they can retrieve web pages at much greater speeds than you can via your modest home setup. If these servers are located physically nearer to your home than the web host servers you wish to retrieve web pages from, the speed at which you browse the web will be accelerated.


Anonymity - Cookies
One last important point you need to be aware of before jumping in with both feet is that different programs have to be setup in different ways before being able to make external connections via a proxy server. For example, you can surf the web anonymously by modifying the settings in Internet Explorer or Netscape Navigator as explained earlier in this tutorial, but this will only affect your browser. If you then used Flash FXP to copy a batch of 0-day releases from one FTP server to another, this isn't going to protect you in the slightest. What you have to do is enter the name of the proxy server into each application you wish to make anonymous before making any external connections. This can usually be done by browsing through the preferences of your program to see if there is a 'use proxy server' option available. If there is, make sure you use it!


Cookies:
You have little to fear from the edible variety, but the digital ones can be a major threat to your security and privacy. A cookie is a tiny text file (usually less than 1kb in size), which is created and stored on your hard drive whenever you visit a dynamic (or an interactive if you like) web site. These are used to log your personal details so that you can access members only areas of web sites without having to type in a password every time, or to retain your customised settings so that they are available the next time you visit. If you're using a shared computer, anyone who visits the same site that you have previously logged in to can access your accounts. This is particularly worrying if you have entered your credit card details into a form on an e-commerce site. If your browser is set to automatically fill in these details whenever you
return to a previously visited site, this information could be clearly visible - you don't need me to explain the problems this could entail.

The solution to this problem is to delete any cookies which contain sensitive data once you have completed your transactions. Your cookies will be stored in a different place depending on which operating system you are using so you will have to use your detective skills to find them. As an example, in Windows XP they are located in your 'c:\Documents and Settings\Kylie Minogue\Cookies' directory (that is if your name is Kylie Minogue. Mine isn't in case you're wondering!). If you look in this directory, in some cases it is easy to identify which cookie is associated with which web site, but in other cases it's not so obvious. The cookie which was created when you visited Yahoo.com to check your email may be called kylie minogue@yahoo.txt for example. Unfortunately some cookies refer to the IP address of the site you visited and so look more like kylie minogue@145.147.25.21. These cookies can be selectively deleted one at a time if it's obvious which ones are causing a threat to your security, or you can just wipe out the whole lot in one fell swoop and have them recreated as and when they are required. However, if
you're really struggling to find your cookie jar, you could delete your cookies via your browser's tool bar instead. In Internet Explorer this can be done through the 'Tools' > 'Internet Options' menu items.

If all this sounds like too much hassle, you can always find a labour saving program which will be happy to take the job off your hands. These 'cookie crunching' programs allow you to be more selective when editing, viewing and deleting cookies from your system, and some of them will even prevent cookies from being created in the first place. Yes, I know you're hungry for links so I won't deprive you. Have a look here - Code:
hxxp://www.rbaworld.com/Programs/CookieCruncher/ Cookie
Cruncher
hxxp://www.thelimitsoft.com/ Cookie Crusher
hxxp://www.angove.com/ Cookie Killer
hxxp://www.kburra.com/ Cookie Pal
and
hxxp://www.cookiecentral.com/ Cookie Web Kit.

All mIRC Commands

 All mIRC Commands

/ Recalls the previous command entered in the current window.
/! Recalls the last command typed in any window.
/action {action text} Sends the specifed action to the active channel or query window.
/add [-apuce] {filename.ini} Loads aliases, popups, users, commands, and events.
/ame {action text} Sends the specifed action to all channels which you are currently on.
/amsg {text} Sends the specifed message to all channels which you are currently on.
/auser {level} {nick|address} Adds a user with the specified access level to the remote users
list.
/auto [on|off|nickname|address] Toggles auto-opping of a nick or address or sets it on or off
totally.
/away {away message} Sets you away leave a message explaining that you are not currently paying
attention to IRC.
/away Sets you being back.
/ban [#channel] {nickname} [type] Bans the specified nick from the curent or given channel.
/beep {number} {delay} Locally beeps 'number' times with 'delay' in between the beeps. /channel
Pops up the channel central window (only works in a channel).
/clear Clears the entire scrollback buffer of the current window.
/ctcp {nickname} {ping|finger|version|time|userinfo|clientinfo} Does the given ctcp request on
nickname.
/closemsg {nickname} Closes the query window you have open to the specified nick.
/creq [ask | auto | ignore] Sets your DCC 'On Chat request' settings in DCC/Options.
/dcc send {nickname} {file1} {file2} {file3} ... {fileN} Sends the specified files to nick.
/dcc chat {nickname} Opens a dcc window and sends a dcc chat request to nickname.
/describe {#channel} {action text} Sends the specifed action to the specified channel window.
/dde [-r] {service} {topic} {item} [data] Allows DDE control between mIRC and other
applications.
/ddeserver [on [service name] | off] To turn on the DDE server mode, eventually with a given
service name.
/disable {#groupname} De-activates a group of commands or events.
/disconnect Forces a hard and immediate disconnect from your IRC server. Use it with care.
/dlevel {level} Changes the default user level in the remote section.
/dns {nickname | IP address | IP name} Uses your providers DNS to resolve an IP address.
/echo [nickname|#channel|status] {text} Displays the given text only to YOU on the given place
in color N.
/enable {#groupname} Activates a group of commands or events.
/events [on|off] Shows the remote events status or sets it to listening or not.
/exit Forces mIRC to closedown and exit.
/finger Does a finger on a users address.
/flood [{numberoflines} {seconds} {pausetime}] Sets a crude flood control method.
/fsend [on|off] Shows fsends status and allows you to turn dcc fast send on or off.
/fserve {nickname} {maxgets} {homedirectory} [welcome text file] Opens a fileserver.
/guser {level} {nick} [type] Adds the user to the user list with the specified level and
address type.
/help {keyword} Brings up the Basic IRC Commands section in the mIRC help file.
/ignore [on|off|nickname|address] Toggles ignoring of a nick or address or sets it on or off
totally.
/invite {nickname} {#channel} Invites another user to a channel.
/join {#channel} Makes you join the specified channel.
/kick {#channel} {nickname} Kicks nickname off a given channel.
/list [#string] [-min #] [-max #] Lists all currently available channels, evt. filtering for
parameters.
/log [on|off] Shows the logging status or sets it on or off for the current window.
/me {action text} Sends the specifed action to the active channel or query window.
/mode {#channel|nickname} [[+|-]modechars [parameters]] Sets channel or user modes.
/msg {nickname} {message} Send a private message to this user without opening a query window.
/names {#channel} Shows the nicks of all people on the given channel.
/nick {new nickname} Changes your nickname to whatever you like.
/notice {nick} {message} Send the specified notice message to the nick.
/notify [on|off|nickname] Toggles notifying you of a nick on IRC or sets it on or off totally.
/onotice [#channel] {message} Send the specified notice message to all channel ops.
/omsg [#channel] {message} Send the specified message to all ops on a channel.
/part {#channel} Makes you leave the specified channel.
/partall Makes you leave all channels you are on.
/ping {server address} Pings the given server. NOT a nickname.
/play [-c] {filename} [delay] Allows you to send text files to a window.
/pop {delay} [#channel] {nickname} Performs a randomly delayed +o on a not already opped nick.
/protect [on|off|nickname|address] Toggles protection of a nick or address or sets it on or off
totally.
/query {nickname} {message} Open a query window to this user and send them the private message.
/quit [reason] Disconnect you from IRC with the optional byebye message.
/raw {raw command} Sends any raw command you supply directly to the server. Use it with care!!
/remote [on|off] Shows the remote commands status or sets it to listening or not.
/rlevel {access level} Removes all users from the remote users list with the specified access
level.
/run {c:\path\program.exe} [parameters] Runs the specified program, evt. with parameters.
/ruser {nick[!]|address} [type] Removes the user from the remote users list.
/save {filename.ini} Saves remote sections into a specified INI file.
/say {text} Says whatever you want to the active window.
/server [server address [port] [password]] Reconnects to the previous server or a newly
specified one.
/sound [nickname|#channel] {filename.wav} {action text} Sends an action and a fitting sound.
/speak {text} Uses the external text to speech program Monologue to speak up the text.
/sreq [ask | auto | ignore] Sets your DCC 'On Send request' settings in DCC/Options.
/time Tells you the time on the server you use.
/timer[N] {repetitions} {interval in seconds} {command} [| {more commands}] Activates a timer.
/topic {#channel} {newtopic} Changes the topic for the specified channel.
/ulist [{|}]{level} Lists all users in the remote list with the specified access levels.
/url [-d] Opens the URL windows that allows you to surf the www parallel to IRC.
/uwho [nick] Pops up the user central with information about the specified user.
/who {#channel} Shows the nicks of all people on the given channel.
/who {*address.string*} Shows all people on IRC with a matching address.
/whois {nickname} Shows information about someone in the status window.
/whowas {nickname} Shows information about someone who -just- left IRC.
/wavplay {c:\path\sound.wav} Locally plays the specified wave file.
/write [-cidl] {filename} [text] To write the specified text to a .txt file.

10 Fast and Free Security Enhancements

10 Fast and Free Security Enhancements

Before you spend a dime on security, there are many precautions you can take that will protect you against the most common threats.

1. Check Windows Update and Office Update regularly (_http://office.microsoft.com/productupdates); have your Office CD ready. Windows Me, 2000, and XP users can configure automatic updates. Click on the Automatic Updates tab in the System control panel and choose the appropriate options.

2. Install a personal firewall. Both SyGate (_www.sygate.com) and ZoneAlarm (_www.zonelabs.com) offer free versions.


3. Install a free spyware blocker. Our Editors' Choice ("Spyware," April 22) was SpyBot Search & Destroy (_http://security.kolla.de). SpyBot is also paranoid and ruthless in hunting out tracking cookies.

4. Block pop-up spam messages in Windows NT, 2000, or XP by disabling the Windows Messenger service (this is unrelated to the instant messaging program). Open Control Panel | Administrative Tools | Services and you'll see Messenger. Right-click and go to Properties. Set Start-up Type to Disabled and press the Stop button. Bye-bye, spam pop-ups! Any good firewall will also stop them.

5. Use strong passwords and change them periodically. Passwords should have at least seven characters; use letters and numbers and have at least one symbol. A decent example would be f8izKro@l. This will make it much harder for anyone to gain access to your accounts.

6. If you're using Outlook or Outlook Express, use the current version or one with the Outlook Security Update installed. The update and current versions patch numerous vulnerabilities.

7. Buy antivirus software and keep it up to date. If you're not willing to pay, try Grisoft AVG Free Edition (Grisoft Inc., w*w.grisoft.com). And doublecheck your AV with the free, online-only scanners available at w*w.pandasoftware.com/activescan and _http://housecall.trendmicro.com.

8. If you have a wireless network, turn on the security features: Use MAC filtering, turn off SSID broadcast, and even use WEP with the biggest key you can get. For more, check out our wireless section or see the expanded coverage in Your Unwired World in our next issue.

9. Join a respectable e-mail security list, such as the one found at our own Security Supersite at _http://security.ziffdavis.com, so that you learn about emerging threats quickly and can take proper precautions.

10. Be skeptical of things on the Internet. Don't assume that e-mail "From:" a particular person is actually from that person until you have further reason to believe it's that person. Don't assume that an attachment is what it says it is. Don't give out your password to anyone, even if that person claims to be from "support."

20 Great Google Secrets

20 Great Google Secrets

Google is clearly the best general-purpose search engine on the Web (see

www.pcmag.com/searchengines

But most people don't use it to its best advantage. Do you just plug in a keyword or two and hope for the best? That may be the quickest way to search, but with more than 3 billion pages in Google's index, it's still a struggle to pare results to a manageable number.

But Google is an remarkably powerful tool that can ease and enhance your Internet exploration. Google's search options go beyond simple keywords, the Web, and even its own programmers. Let's look at some of Google's lesser-known options.

Syntax Search Tricks

Using a special syntax is a way to tell Google that you want to restrict your searches to certain elements or characteristics of Web pages. Google has a fairly complete list of its syntax elements at

www.google.com/help/operators.html

. Here are some advanced operators that can help narrow down your search results.

Intitle: at the beginning of a query word or phrase (intitle:"Three Blind Mice") restricts your search results to just the titles of Web pages.

Intext: does the opposite of intitle:, searching only the body text, ignoring titles, links, and so forth. Intext: is perfect when what you're searching for might commonly appear in URLs. If you're looking for the term HTML, for example, and you don't want to get results such as

www.mysite.com/index.html

, you can enter intext:html.

Link: lets you see which pages are linking to your Web page or to another page you're interested in. For example, try typing in

link:http://www.pcmag.com


Try using site: (which restricts results to top-level domains) with intitle: to find certain types of pages. For example, get scholarly pages about Mark Twain by searching for intitle:"Mark Twain"site:edu. Experiment with mixing various elements; you'll develop several strategies for finding the stuff you want more effectively. The site: command is very helpful as an alternative to the mediocre search engines built into many sites.

Swiss Army Google

Google has a number of services that can help you accomplish tasks you may never have thought to use Google for. For example, the new calculator feature

(www.google.com/help/features.html#calculator)

lets you do both math and a variety of conversions from the search box. For extra fun, try the query "Answer to life the universe and everything."

Let Google help you figure out whether you've got the right spelling—and the right word—for your search. Enter a misspelled word or phrase into the query box (try "thre blund mise") and Google may suggest a proper spelling. This doesn't always succeed; it works best when the word you're searching for can be found in a dictionary. Once you search for a properly spelled word, look at the results page, which repeats your query. (If you're searching for "three blind mice," underneath the search window will appear a statement such as Searched the web for "three blind mice.") You'll discover that you can click on each word in your search phrase and get a definition from a dictionary.

Suppose you want to contact someone and don't have his phone number handy. Google can help you with that, too. Just enter a name, city, and state. (The city is optional, but you must enter a state.) If a phone number matches the listing, you'll see it at the top of the search results along with a map link to the address. If you'd rather restrict your results, use rphonebook: for residential listings or bphonebook: for business listings. If you'd rather use a search form for business phone listings, try Yellow Search

(www.buzztoolbox.com/google/yellowsearch.shtml).




Extended Googling

Google offers several services that give you a head start in focusing your search. Google Groups

(http://groups.google.com)

indexes literally millions of messages from decades of discussion on Usenet. Google even helps you with your shopping via two tools: Froogle
CODE
(http://froogle.google.com),

which indexes products from online stores, and Google Catalogs
CODE
(http://catalogs.google.com),

which features products from more 6,000 paper catalogs in a searchable index. And this only scratches the surface. You can get a complete list of Google's tools and services at

www.google.com/options/index.html

You're probably used to using Google in your browser. But have you ever thought of using Google outside your browser?

Google Alert

(www.googlealert.com)

monitors your search terms and e-mails you information about new additions to Google's Web index. (Google Alert is not affiliated with Google; it uses Google's Web services API to perform its searches.) If you're more interested in news stories than general Web content, check out the beta version of Google News Alerts

(www.google.com/newsalerts).

This service (which is affiliated with Google) will monitor up to 50 news queries per e-mail address and send you information about news stories that match your query. (Hint: Use the intitle: and source: syntax elements with Google News to limit the number of alerts you get.)

Google on the telephone? Yup. This service is brought to you by the folks at Google Labs

(http://labs.google.com),

a place for experimental Google ideas and features (which may come and go, so what's there at this writing might not be there when you decide to check it out). With Google Voice Search

(http://labs1.google.com/gvs.html),

you dial the Voice Search phone number, speak your keywords, and then click on the indicated link. Every time you say a new search term, the results page will refresh with your new query (you must have JavaScript enabled for this to work). Remember, this service is still in an experimental phase, so don't expect 100 percent success.

In 2002, Google released the Google API (application programming interface), a way for programmers to access Google's search engine results without violating the Google Terms of Service. A lot of people have created useful (and occasionally not-so-useful but interesting) applications not available from Google itself, such as Google Alert. For many applications, you'll need an API key, which is available free from
CODE
www.google.com/apis

. See the figures for two more examples, and visit

www.pcmag.com/solutions

for more.

Thanks to its many different search properties, Google goes far beyond a regular search engine. Give the tricks in this article a try. You'll be amazed at how many different ways Google can improve your Internet searching.


Online Extra: More Google Tips


Here are a few more clever ways to tweak your Google searches.

Search Within a Timeframe

Daterange: (start date–end date). You can restrict your searches to pages that were indexed within a certain time period. Daterange: searches by when Google indexed a page, not when the page itself was created. This operator can help you ensure that results will have fresh content (by using recent dates), or you can use it to avoid a topic's current-news blizzard and concentrate only on older results. Daterange: is actually more useful if you go elsewhere to take advantage of it, because daterange: requires Julian dates, not standard Gregorian dates. You can find converters on the Web (such as

CODE
http://aa.usno.navy.mil/data/docs/JulianDate.html

excl.gif No Active Links, Read the Rules - Edit by Ninja excl.gif


), but an easier way is to do a Google daterange: search by filling in a form at

www.researchbuzz.com/toolbox/goofresh.shtml or www.faganfinder.com/engines/google.shtml

. If one special syntax element is good, two must be better, right? Sometimes. Though some operators can't be mixed (you can't use the link: operator with anything else) many can be, quickly narrowing your results to a less overwhelming number.

More Google API Applications

Staggernation.com offers three tools based on the Google API. The Google API Web Search by Host (GAWSH) lists the Web hosts of the results for a given query

(www.staggernation.com/gawsh/).

When you click on the triangle next to each host, you get a list of results for that host. The Google API Relation Browsing Outliner (GARBO) is a little more complicated: You enter a URL and choose whether you want pages that related to the URL or linked to the URL

(www.staggernation.com/garbo/).

Click on the triangle next to an URL to get a list of pages linked or related to that particular URL. CapeMail is an e-mail search application that allows you to send an e-mail to google@capeclear.com with the text of your query in the subject line and get the first ten results for that query back. Maybe it's not something you'd do every day, but if your cell phone does e-mail and doesn't do Web browsing, this is a very handy address to know.

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