Ranjeet Walunj

February 12, 2009

Argument: Is open source software secure enough ?

I’ve heard this argument by many microsoft/closed source technology evangelist that Open Source softwares are not secure enough.

And any one can easily find the flaw in the software and use it for his benefit.

This week there was an argument on slashdot about the same.

According to the Linus’s Law, “given enough eyeballs, all bugs are shallow”. More formally: “Given a large enough beta-tester and co-developer base, almost every problem will be characterized quickly and the fix will be obvious to someone.” — this rule was formulated by ESR (Eric S. Raymond).

Open Source due to its very own nature of revealing all catches attention of all users/hackers/programmers across the world using that software. (Pls Note: Hackers always have good intentions.)

The source code is validated by many learned people and if any flaw is found it is quickly reported and fixed.
If a certain OSS is subject to vulnerability continuously then it looses its charm and people quickly migrate to more secure alternatives.
(For example: Most of the new installations of mail servers are based on qmail/postfix rather than Sendmail)

In case of closed source (for e.g. windows) it takes long time to report flaw and much longer to fix it.

I dont hate microsoft, infact i use windows XP for most of my day job and happy with it. But I feel much flexibility with my linux. Most importantly if something is going wrong I know where to check and what could be the reasons. (syslogs are also great friend)

But talking about security NO OSS is less secure than any closed source software just because it is open in nature or for that matter any other reason.

Lots of learned independent developers/testers/reviewers have gone through the codes/designs/outcomes of the OSS and have contributed to the security threats/bugs/potential problems.

Collective intelligence (worldwide) is always superior to a closed group of people.

As someone suggested it is easy to experience than arguing over this.

Best is to deploy for yourself and run weekly penetrative testing to see the possible results.

There is no security from stupid actions of users/administrators, however assuming security by obfuscation/closed source is nothing bu stupidity.

I’ve been personally using OSS for years now and absolutely happy with the way it has helped me in learning things.

February 3, 2009

Life …. in four photos

Filed under: Feel Good, general — Tags: , — ranjeetwalunj @ 2:56 pm

Just got this in email forward ….


First Pic

Break of Dawn — New lease of life, embarking upon a New Voyage……
A Child Flying Kite — Young Blood, Aspiring to Fly High with Enormous Zest n Zeal…Coz U Know, Sky is The Limit……
A Small Tree — Need to Nurture…….
Two Birds Hovering Above — There r People Around to Take Ample Care of You, You r Actually Carefree…….

Second Pic

Daylight — You r Almost Halfway Through in This Voyage Called Life…..
Couple — You Have a Better half of Yours to Lean Upon n Speak Your Heart Out to……
Grown-up Tree — You Have Been Nurtured Profusely to Stand Tall n Rigidly in The Storms That May, Otherwise, Let U Down…….. .
A Small Tree — You, Together With Your Better half, Have Given a New Lease of Life to Another Breaking Dawn (Your Child)………
One Bird Hovering Above — There r Comparatively Less People around You to Take Care of You, Unlike during Your Wonder Childhood Years…….

Third Pic

Fall of Dusk — Twilight is setting Upon, Life Has Come a Full Circle….
An Old Man — It’s a Race Against Time Now On, It’s The Beginning of The End of The Voyage……
Ageing Tree — Signifies The Above Two Things, Second One Being The Personification of This……..
Grown Tree — Your Kids Have Grown Up; It’s High Time You Start Supporting Them With Tender Care Rather Than Clashes……….
One Bird — Self Explanatory, I Guess???
Grave — In Course of The Voyage You Have Lost Loved Ones n You Also Start to Anticipate Your Ultimate Fate n Destiny……….

Fourth Pic

Nightfall — Voyage is Over, Darkness is Looming Over, High Time to Say Good Bye….
Starry Sky — There’s Still Happiness Around, Thanks to The Aesthetic Memories Left by You n The Good Work Done Too….. .
Grown-up Tree — Your Kids r Walking in Your Shoes now, It’s For Them to Follow Your Footsteps Drawing Inspiration From Your Exemplary Life..
Grave With Two Crosses — You r United with Your Soul mates n RIPS……..

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