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June 28, 2002

HTTP protocol and IIS

Microsoft's IIS server is certainly popular. IIS includes an HTTP server with ASP support, FTP Server, and an SMTP Server. With the gaining popularity of active and database-based websites, ASP is also becoming a mainstay in the web-development space. Since the NT/2000 platform is so prevalent and so easy to setup and maintain, it is no wonder IIS took off like wildfire. Furthermore, now that IIS is being pushed into the consumer space with Windows XP, the webserver platform is getting even more exposure. Maybe that is why all these Microsoft patches and holes are getting so much press. For all its popularity, IIS is ridden with bugs as depicted by all the number of worms and viruses written to attack it.

This paper (Hosting ASP.NET) gives a little insight into the workings of ASP and presents Cassini (Microsoft's attempt to refactor IIS). From an initial look, Cassini is very basic. It offers basic web page serving and ASP.NET execution. But to most of us who are willing to get our hands a little dirty, basic is good. From my experiences of trying to run a server in the past and spending so much time in keeping up with Microsoft's patches, I definitely think it's worth a look.

I am currently exploring the free tool put out by Microsoft to develop ASP.NET. It's called The Web Matrix Project and is currently at Beta .5. I have an impression that the webserver included with the tool is Cassini.

Posted by Hoang at 11:19 AM | Add the first comment | Technology

June 02, 2002

It looks like someone else who was playing around found a little more success with this system than you did. The Mercury ran this cute little article regarding people who found each other. Hey, the wonders of the internet through a little tap of the mouse click.

Here is a take on a different topic: Nation-wide Broadband. I'm for anything that would make cheap broadband available for everyone. Right now the issue is in Congress and Lieberman is carrying about trying to push the idea. With POTS lines, America is still in the stone age and to those in power, they want to keep us there. Why not when the Bell providers can continue to milk the public for the next hundred or two hundred years? Well for whatever reason the law makers can decide on, I really hope the issue of Broadband passes. Because the technology have been available for many years and we all need it.

Posted by Hoang at 06:45 AM | 1 Comments | Technology

April 21, 2002

Home Networking

Networking used to be within the realm of experts. In today's age, that is no more and with the proliferation of PCs, networking seems a must for computer users. Today, we have a variety of options aside from the traditional 10 Megabit twisted pair. They include:

  • the faster 10/100MBit switchable ethernet
  • Broadband router - to share your broadband line between up to 4 computers. Typically this offering also includes a firewall to protect your local network from unwanted hackers.
  • Wireless networking
  • HomePNA - networking thru the phone line, typically up to 1.5Mbit

And now added to the growing list is Powerline Networking. If you own more than one PC, there really isn't any more reason not to network.

Posted by Hoang at 08:46 AM | Add the first comment | Technology

April 18, 2002

Where all the Work's Hiding

There is a new theory on Evolt: Where all the Work's Hiding . It does ring true because the Internet is here to stay. By Internet, I mean the fact of IP packets flying around the world. Whether which upper level layers will survive doesn't matter. That it exists will mean that people will find ways to make money from it.

Posted by Hoang at 08:14 AM | Add the first comment | Technology

April 11, 2002

from Bust to Boom then to Bust again

Make a million, lose a million, who cares?. This is a good spin on the phenomenon we just went through the last couple of years. Datacom, this is the area in which I specialize in too. It is sad to hear that the entire datacom/telecom industry is regarded as a bad taste in the mouth like yesterday's undigested lunch. I have had my share of working in a 10 people company. I had spent a short time at Kestrel Solutions in Moutain View back in 1998. Each engineer had a Costco table for his computer, another one for his stack of books, and a rolling chair. It was a garage-like setting in a building which was broken down and no facilities. Conveniently Costco was located next door and twice a week the marketting person would take orders of supplies and make a trip to Costco. At first glance it seemed like a hellish place to work in, but the comradery and the spirit of the place tempered that view quite a bit.

I didn't stay long enough to see how the company fared. But for a period of 4 months, I was the software guy making a difference. Although it didn't seem like much, it felt good being part of something, creating something. Financially, the experience didn't go anywhere.... but I'm sure that's not why we all got into engineering in the first place. To use our minds to create, to be respected for what we do, and to earn a decent living... at least this was my intentions for entering the business coming out of college.

April 09, 2002

Net software for free

Now that the dot-com bust is in full swing, everyone with software needs will want Net expertise for free. Sure, I suppose that it's the economy.... but then you get what you paid for too. It aint cheap to get a proper technical education and years (maybe even a lifetime) of experience. How then should it be cheaper than getting an oil change for your car?

Posted by Hoang at 03:36 PM | Add the first comment | Technology

April 02, 2002

Pay for Email

It looks like the grace period for Internet is over. Soon you will have the privilege of paying for internet services that have been free (up to this point). ABC News reports: Is the free ride over? Starting April 1, 2002, Yahoo will be charging for email access from the POP interface. That means those who have been using Outlook, Eudora, or any other POP mail clients will either have to migrate to using the Web-Email interface or cough up the amount required by Yahoo. Furthermore, Yahoo has decided to SPAM your mailboxes by setting your option defaults to Opt-In. Because you have been such a devoted user of Yahoo.... they will now use that fact to send you lots of advertisements about things you don't want or need.

With Hotmail, Microsoft has already moved in that direction long ago. If you have a hotmail account, you will find yourself getting 10 to 15 ** DO YOU WANT SEX or ***HOW TO BE A BILLIONAIRE OVERNIGHT messages a day. Within 2 days, you get a message: *** YOU ARE OVER YOUR ALLOTTED DISK-SPACE, sign up with us for more SPAM space or be kicked out. Frustrated at yourself for putting up with this everytime you log-in for email and at them for doing this to you, you vow to drop the account by week's end. Then at the end of the week, you get one real message from a friend. And you decide to keep the account because your friend might send you another one.

The cycle of vicious ritual goes on.

March 27, 2002

Site Reorganization

I just made a site reorganization and as well have made a site move to a different domain address. We can now be reached at:

Posted by Hoang at 06:14 PM | Add the first comment | Technology

February 02, 2002

CPU roadmap

What's Inside?
For those of you shopping for a new computer, here is PCMag's latest scoop for CPU comparison shopping.

Posted by Hoang at 02:24 PM | Add the first comment | Technology


Here is a good article from Bob Frankston on connectivity. Connectivity: What it is and why it is so important

If we can get proper connectivity within less than a month, we might be there. You don't see companies taking a month for proper turn-around for electrical services or water services, do you. I think companies providing Internet Services have a long way to go.

January 30, 2002

Microsoft fix: IISLockDown

Microsoft released IISLockdown tool in response to the rapid spread of the nimbda and Code Red viruses. This tool is supposed to close up holes within their IIS server. From the initial impressions, it sounds great and I decided to install it more out of precaution than anything else. Suddenly I find many of my sites broken, giving out errors such as "Object Disabled" and the such. My initial thought is that I am using the server in many unconventional ways than other users. Perhaps that is why it broke. I then proceeded to install a new server and installed LockDown. Maybe if I install it first before other applications, I can debug them individually. I found that route didn't work either.

It is not only me who is facing this problem. In summary, my recommendation for this tool is to not use it unless you are using IIS in the standard way prescribed by Microsoft. It does a good job of locking everything up. But that's the problem, it locks everything up so your server stops working except in the static website mode.

Posted by Hoang at 09:30 AM | Add the first comment | Technology

January 27, 2002

Cox Cable Modem fiascos

It is getting to be a bad habid now all because of Cox Communications' insufferable cable modem service. I am constantly browsing the newsgroup "" in the hope of finding the solution to a constantly dropped connection problem. I receive internet access for between 30 minutes to an hour before the head-end equipment drops my connection. The only way around this seems to be to reboot the computer as well as the modem. This has been going on for 2 weeks. Since last week, I have decided to drop their service and sign up with Sprint DSL. Unfortunately Sprint isn't so great with turnarounds either so I expect to wait at least another 2 weeks before getting service. Until then, I guess I will have to bear with Cox. As a broadband user for the past 2 years.... I can attest that problematic installations is really one major reason why people aren't signing up.

Posted by Hoang at 01:35 PM | Add the first comment | Technology
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