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The life and times of james Hart: his family, his music, life in Luton and his occasional escapes onto the internet.

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Thursday, 27 April 2006

grinding to a halt... (techie)

Sometimes I'm glad that I only look after a small home network (well, OK, I'm partially responsible for a fair number of other things at work... but at this stage, not the network!) since last night I discovered the latest reason why my hard-working Linux box was running so slowly.

I use ports 8000 to about 8007 for MP3 streaming, so set ports 8000-8100 to forward to my web server, in case I wanted to get a little more creative with the numbering.

More recently (as I mentioned a little while ago) I set up Squid proxy server and Dan's Guardian to add a bit of parental control to Chris and Lenni's surfing. This uses port 8080 as a proxy, which you set up in Internet Explorer, and the job's a good 'un.

When I investigated the slowness last night (a painful process, considering how long it took for each command to be dealt with) the Squid and DansGuardian processes were being hammered - why? Because naughty people had found my open 8080 port, and were using it as a proxy for their internet traffic! (whoops!) The joke, of course, was on them, since all traffic was being watched by the puritanical Dansguardian, so I don't think they'll have got far!

I've set the port range to 8000-8079 now and - unsurprisingly - things are running more smoothly. I think there's a lesson there somewhere...

Links of the day:

  • preview.local.live.com : As a concept, it's impressive; in action, it's quite eerie, but is it actually any use? Walk around a 'virtual' San Francisco!
  • techrepublic.com.com/2300-1035_11-6058410-1.html : A news story about the first poster to appear on Google Earth... well, OK, so it's actually an overlay that is cleverly (and accurately) placed over the Google Earth co-ordinates - it'll be a couple of years before it can be seen for real, and even then it'll not be at nearly the same resolution.
  • www.stupid.com : a website that doesn't need any more description than the URL...
  • www.mus-ic.co.uk/images/blog/2006-04-27/bs_6008.pdf : I discovered last week that there's actually a British Standard (and an international one, too) for making tea - it's BS6008, and some wag printed out a copy and stuck it up in our kichen area.

  • www.faqs.org/rfcs/rfc1149.html : There's also an official document on internet traffic by carrier pigeon. Slightly less use, I might venture to suggest..

Posted by james at April 27, 2006 10:38 AM

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