I noted this section contains many long discussion on security and processor etc.
I have no time to read them all -sorry- but being an highly experienced IT Security and a ranked Reverse Engineer, I wish to share you few serious information's, all in one.
1) windows vs linux: security holes in windows are more dangerous and in greater number for the simple fact linux is open source. Same reason for the fact Explorer is highly insecure compared to Firefox or Opera. Opera has been known as the "Hacker Browser", as it was in the past the preferred choice of serious hacker and cracker for safe surfing the net.
2) AMD vs Intel: If you cannot read and understand the IA32 manuals (especially voll. 3, system programming), just take this as a fact (this is not valid for Core2, however). All intel p4 processors averaged a 1/3->1/2 throughput bandwidth on instruction execution, and a x2-x3 higher latency on instruction re-execution. And this is true even for SSE instruction set. Said in simple words, when you compare an AMD processor with an intel one, just x2 AMD clock to make a fair test. Not kidding.
This is not true for Conroe, but still for P4D (tests on reissue latency and througput where not performed on this type of processor, as well as P4M types).
3) Vista Security: All the Socket Layer has been rewritten from scratch in Vista. You can find some professional RCE paper about it at Symantec too, if you know how to search. What does this means? A rewritten core is not strengthened and hardened by the time. It is very insecure, because it has not been tested and has not been ATTACKED enough. Worse, for "obscure" reasons, m$ is not giving out the needed API for creating security tools. It is not a problem for hackers, but a real problem for security companies like MCAFEE or Symantec.
So, be real real careful. You got warned.
4) Buy a router/modem with integrated firewall. Don't even bother to ask or wonder why. And take a decent firewall (Agnitum, Kerio, ZoneAlarm, Look'n Stop is the best if you stand its 'rawnwess').
5) Keep Windows Update on.
6) Avoid TDI firewalls. TDI firewalls can be bypassed by a kernel driver (rootkit) using kernel apis: this means that decent rootkits can bypass them and you will never know. An example? u-uhm... At least until the first part of this year (and still, I believe!! rewriting a FW engine is highly costing) ...Am I allows to say it? The company name starts with S.
7) Don't bother which antivirus is the better... no matter what they say, antivirus are fooled so easily that you can event don't bother. I know Security experts that don't even keep it (they just examine each binary they dowload to see what it does). You should keep one, and keep it updated. many today's virus are made by script kiddies with no real knowledge, and AVs can protect decently against them.
8) Create a administrator account, and make your normal account a limited one. This way, when you upload 'bad' software it won't be able to install rootkits and keyloggers. Of course, if you navigate internet in an admin account, you are at HEAVY risk.
Alternative: create a special link to your browser and run it with a limite user credentials. You won't be able to use your 'documents' folder, but it will make you safe against browser exploits -especially if you use IE.
9) got bored. And cannot post a security link other than main software one due to rules, sorry...
Taught enough, and now I have to prepare my reversing/security course for IITAC
...no, it is not a generic course, it is an high level course for programmers, requires iAPX86 assembler knowledge at least...
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