Monday, February 22, 2010

Adobe Flash Player direct download link

Saturday I wrote where to directly download Adobe Reader. Here is a direct download link for Adobe Flash Player.
This is helpful when you want to install or update Adobe Flash Player offline.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Adobe Reader direct download links

When you want to install or update Adobe Reader offline, you need to download the files. This is not an easy task as you don't see the links for downloading the installation files, when you are visiting the Adobe site. Here are the direct download links for Adobe Reader:
See also the Adobe Flash Player direct download links.

“Update All”: Securing your computers with Secunia Personal Software Inspector (PSI).

It's easy to keep your computers operating system up to date: Just activate Auto Update. But how to keep all the other programs updated?

Does this really matter?
Isn't it enough to keep my operating system and browser up to date and from time to time to update some programs? According to a recent study (PDF) 80% of the exploits are done by malicious PDF files. Another 18% are Flash exploits. This shows that the browser isn't any more the main target of the hackers. This means that all the programs must be kept up to date as much as possible.

How can this be done?
Obviously you can't run all the programs regularly to find out if their internal automatic update mechanism shows that there are available updates. You can't browse to the download page of all your programs checking if you have installed the latest version either.
This is where Secunia PSI (Personal Software Inspector) becomes an indispensable companion. This program scans your computer regularly and compares the versions of the installed programs with an up-to-date online database. It also helps you updating programs offering direct links to download the update.
The overview page shows you the score of your computer:

It is a stimulus to update your programs increasing your score. Will you reach 100%? This will be just for a short time. You have to use the program regularly to keep the programs up to date. It is worth while! It is a good feeling to know that your programs are up to date and you have the best possible security.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Sending mail issues because of spam blacklists

Problem
You may observe that your email is frequently marked as spam or even refused by mail servers. The first thing to do is to examine the log file of your mail host. You may see some errors by your smart host like:
Feb 11 2:10 PM mail mail.info postfix/smtp[48923]: 4A87C900BA: to <...>,
relay=smtp.smarthost.fld[123.132.122.133]:25, delay=802, delays=802/0/0.17/0.12,
dns=4.0.0, status=deferred (host smtp.smarthost.fld[123.132.122.133] said: 451 http://www.barracudanetworks.com/

What does this mean?
Well the recipient or your smarthost server refused the email because you are black listed at barracudanetworks.com (actually http://www.barracudacentral.org/reputation).

What to do?
Fist check where your public IP address or domain is black listed. Visit http://www.blacklistalert.com/ and provide your public IP address or domain and click check.
If you are black listed you may have several options:
  • Go to each black list organization and see if there is an option to remove your IP address or domain from the black list. Some black lists, like http://www.uceprotect.net/en don't allow removal at all.
  • Check the reason why you are black listed. It may be that not your IP address is black listed but the whole sub net of your provider. In this case you may consider contacting your ISP for resolving this.
  • You may try to send your email using your internet providers SMTP smarthost.
  • If it is your IP address, that is black listed examine how this could happen. Maybe someone made abuse of your Internet connection for sending spam. This may be done by some virus infected computer. Take measures to resolve this.
  • If you are using a dynamic IP address someone who used this address before may have sent spam or may have an infected computer used to sent spam. Ask your ISP for a fixed static IP address.
Further reading

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Exchange 2003 SP2 kisses Windows 2008 R2 Active Directory

Good news for Exchange 2003 administrators. You're no longer bound to Windows 2003 domain controllers. Recently Microsoft updated their Exchange server support matrix, stating that Exchange 2003 SP2 is compatible with Windows 2008 R2 active directory servers. Although the compatibility already was made public by The Microsoft Exchange Team Blog in November, the official support matrix wasn't updated until recently. This is however crucial. Now you can expect support from Microsoft when using this combination.
Exchange 2003 SP2 even supports Windows Server 2008 R2 Forest Functional Level. Note that it is compatible with a wider range of active directory functional levels than Exchange 2007 SP2.