Thursday, December 27, 2007

Windows Scripting : A Starter Pack

I've been in love with scripts since a long time and I've got a lot of resources. Depending upon your area of interest and expertise on Scripting,

Here are some starting points you can choose from :

Sr. No.




My personal favourite


TechNet Script Center


VB Script Primer


WSH Primer

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Book Info : The Art of Deception: Controlling the Human Element of Security by Kevin D. Mitnick

Date: Fri, Dec 21, 2007 at 11:53 AM

When I started my career 5-6 years back, computer security always fascinated me. I don't know why and how but I was always loved reading about computer security - Encryption, System Security, Network Security, Firewalls, Hacking, Cracking and anything else that comes to the mind.
During my stay at ESS(My previous company, a great place to work), one day I was browsing about programming best practices and from one link to another it
took me to a special web page that mentioned a guy called Kevin Mitnick and a small para regarding his work. I said : huh.. interesting...these guy
breaks in to information systems without using any software/technique. And I decided to read his master piece : The Art of Deception. I borrowed the
book from one of a friend and really it took some months before I could start reading it. But yes, when I started, I could not believe how easy it is to
play with Human mind and get things done which will be too difficult to do if we are using standard software attack techniques(Session Hijacking, IP
Spoofing to name a few). I completed the book in few sittings and I must say I am so impressed with it. It is not only the element of surprise that
is being maintained in all the real life scenarios but also the style, sophistication, confidence and smartness of the attacker(Hacker).
There are more than 20 scenarios i.e. 20+ different real life attacks which caused a lot of damage(In most of the cases) to the victims. If you are really interested in
keeping yourself secure I must say this is the one you can start with. This book explains how to keep you, your job/your business and people around
you safe from a different kind of attack : Social Engineering.
Here is what other reputed sources have to say about the book :
The Art of Deception is about gaining someone's trust by lying to them and then abusing that trust for fun and profit. Hackers use the euphemism "social engineering" and hacker-guru Kevin Mitnick examines many example scenarios.

After Mitnick's first dozen examples anyone responsible for organizational security is going to lose the will to live. It's been said before, but people and security are antithetical. Organizations exist to provide a good or service and want helpful, friendly employees to promote the good or service. People are social animals who want to be liked. Controlling the human aspects of security means denying someone something. This circle can't be squared.

Considering Mitnick's reputation as a hacker guru, it's ironic that the last point of attack for hackers using social engineering are computers. Most of the scenarios in The Art of Deception work just as well against computer-free organizations and were probably known to the Phoenicians; technology simply makes it all easier. Phones are faster than letters, after all, and having large organizations means dealing with lots of strangers.

Much of Mitnick's security advice sounds practical until you think about implementation, when you realize that more effective security means reducing organizational efficiency--an impossible trade in competitive business. And anyway, who wants to work in an organization where the rule is "Trust no one"? Mitnick shows how easily security is breached by trust, but without trust people can't live and work together. In the real world, effective organizations have to acknowledge that total security is a chimera--and carry more insurance. --Steve Patient,

From Publishers Weekly
Mitnick is the most famous computer hacker in the world. Since his first arrest in 1981, at age 17, he has spent nearly half his adult life either in prison or as a fugitive. He has been the subject of three books and his alleged 1982 hack into NORAD inspired the movie War Games. Since his plea-bargain release in 2000, he says he has reformed and is devoting his talents to helping computer security. It's not clear whether this book is a means toward that end or a, wink-wink, fictionalized account of his exploits, with his name changed to protect his parole terms. Either way, it's a tour de force, a series of tales of how some old-fashioned blarney and high-tech skills can pry any information from anyone. As entertainment, it's like reading the climaxes of a dozen complex thrillers, one after the other. As a security education, it's a great series of cautionary tales; however, the advice to employees not to give anyone their passwords is bland compared to the depth and energy of Mitnick's descriptions of how he actually hacked into systems. As a manual for a would-be hacker, it's dated and nonspecific better stuff is available on the Internet but it teaches the timeless spirit of the hack. Between the lines, a portrait emerges of the old-fashioned hacker stereotype: a socially challenged, obsessive loser addicted to an intoxicating sense of power that comes only from stalking and spying.

Friday, December 14, 2007

NET Web Product Roadmap (ASP.NET, Silverlight, IIS7)

I've been bit busy with current project and I've kept around 20-25 posts for the group on my desktop/s. However I thought this one is important and must be posted ASAP.
So here it is, from ScottGu's Blog : .NET Web Product Roadmap (ASP.NET, Silverlight, IIS7)
Important reads will be, I must say, the whole article. However all .Net Developers must have a look at : ASP.NET 3.5 Extensions Release and Silverlight 2.0 Release.

Also, Web Developers and Wanna-Bes should check IIS 7.0.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Visual Studio 2008 and .NET Framework 3.5 Training Kit on MSDN

As you all must be knowing that Microsoft has released .Net Framework 3.5. I was looking for some training material on .Net Framework 3.5 for one of my friend and I ended up here. Just download this, go through the PPT and if you think that you would like to start development on this, please let me know. I will post links to trial version of Visual Studio 2008 and complete download link of .Net Framework 3.5. Current one is the web based stub only, I think I will be able to find the complete package. The Visual Studio 2008 and .NET Framework 3.5 Training Kit includes presentations, hands-on labs, and demos. This content is designed to help you learn how to utilize the Visual Studio 2008 features and a variety of framework technologies including: LINQ, C# 3.0, Visual Basic 9, WCF, WF, WPF, ASP.NET AJAX, VSTO, CardSpace, SilverLight, Mobile and Application Lifecycle Management. Its a 72MB download but then nowadays who cares about the download size? :P

Thursday, October 18, 2007

What's Going On My Side

There were certain updates in my professional life and I thought I should share them with you. so here it goes. Approximately 1 year ago I was sitting in a beautiful conference hall looking at the stage where people were receiving their performance awards and I thought.... sigh....when I will get one of this? And fortunately... things went strange, and before I completed one year in this new company, I got an award for innovation along with other team members for a project I did in June-July. Also, I flied to Bangkok(This city has many good things other than what it is notoriously famous for, I will post it my experiences on my Personal Blog along with photographs I've taken and collected from friends who explored this ancient gateway of Asia), and there I received this award. The same day a composite video that we prepared received great accolade from the audience for being creative and light weight still conveying the message. Along with that there was one PoC we did which was presented there. Also I just completed 1 year with my current company and that makes me feel good as I never expected that I will survive if I leave Gujarat. Now soon I am looking forward to move further but still I've not decided exactly what direction I am headed to.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Brand New Cool Hotmail Domains

I was surfing.. ..5 in the morning what else do you expect?.. and I found that Microsoft has launched this kewl site : It allows you to create a Microsoft Windows Live Mail Id with a custom domain name.
I've created a list of all of them and 3 hidden domain names also.(Check out the source code of the page to see what I mean by that). The hidden(but visible in my list below) domain names are :, and I am not sure whether this will work for existing A/C or not, but sure its a boon for new users. I also liked the way they have put the UI and color elements. A must see for web developers.

Where I Live?Who I Like?Who I Am?What I Like?I Don't Fit - II Don't Fit - II

'Office Live Workspace' Announced

Hurrray... I was so much tired of Google's Online Spreadsheet.. that I stopped using it... at all..and now... here it comes.. just check it out.. you will have to wait for a while.. but yes.. you can go ahead... hit it hard...I am damn sure that UI is gonna be 1000 time better than the Google one...
Just check out the screenshots for registration and basic info.

Click here to go for Office Live Workspace.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

How to prevent a user from launching multiple instances of an application - .Net C# Code

Recently one of my friend asked me to solve a simple problem. How to prevent an end user from launching multiple instances of your application. Instantly it came to my mind - A Mutex(Very expensive resource though...) can be used and I digged some of my old work and here it is. So enjoy... this is far more better than going into processes list and validating your application is running or not?
System.Windows.Forms ;
using System.Collections.Generic;


static class Program
/// <summary>
Define the Mutex
private static System.Threading. Mutex PreviousInstance;

/// <summary>
The main entry point for the application.
static void
PreviousInstance = new System.Threading.Mutex(true , "NetBuddy");//Create a Mutex

if (PreviousInstance.WaitOne(0, false)) //Check for Existing Mutex
//Enable XP/Vista Visual Styles
Application.Run(new frmMain());
//Run Main Form
MessageBox .Show("You are trying to launch multiple Instance of NetBuddy." + Environment .NewLine + "This instance will terminate now.", "NetBuddy Warning", MessageBoxButtons.OK, MessageBoxIcon.Error);
//Warn User that another instance is running