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Thread: Basics of...lots of things.

  1. #1
    Token drunken Irish guy
    Join Date
    Sep 2001

    Talking Basics of...lots of things.

    Basically insomnia is a cruel mistress, much akin to well, other sleep depriving things.

    So I had a root through some of my old tutorials, many of them dating back a good while now and I can only assume new people have yet to see them. Anyway they who have know all this I am sure...!

    Anyway, here we go, basic guides to a few things I guess we should all know.

    Ok lets lay the groundwork, whats the foundation for your puter excepting of course all that hardware. Well its your Operating System isnt it? Lets begin by looking at what exactly an OS is...

    A Guide to Operating Systems

    Operating Systems Explained

    One of the greatest technological advances of the modern age was the development of the OS or Operating System. They allocate storage for programs and carryout various tasks. They act as an interface between user and computer.
    They must interpet the users commands to the appropiate hardware/software. The OS provides a vital link between us and our hardware, in the first development of microcomputers the OS was contained entirely on ROM [Read Only Memory], however it is too hard to alter whereas modern OS systems can be easily configured by a fairly experianced user.
    Today the most widely used OS is MS-DOS, if you dont know it, well you should as its the OS for the GUI [graphical user interface] many of you are now using Windows.
    Perhaps the more respected Operating System is Unix, developed in 1971 and is the internets main OS.

    As you can guess from the name the OS is the software that operates your PC. However it is not the most basic element of the PC. It is the most basic system many users tend to notice. The OS gives users the ability to give commands. Early OS systems such as MS-DOS, APPLE-DOS and PC-DOS contain the three letters DOS. Why you may ask well, DOS stands for Disc Operating System which is what the OS most basic task is, to control disc access and storage.

    Lets take a look at what is between the general user and the hardware of his/her PC.

    YOU the user
    The Operating System
    The Hardware

    What can we do with the Operating System
    a. Obtain a list of files on the discs
    b. Find out how much free space is available
    c. Copy files from one device to another
    d. Join together different files
    e. Delete obselete files
    f. Create new files
    g. Select different input/output devices

    Ok so we have had a look at what an OS is, so why not have some fun with the damn things!
    Lets look at MS-DOS, yes DOS for christs sake, you can stick with that fancy XP GUI or be fancy with your Linux this, Linux that but if you dont know Dos you wont ever be cool so here we go...

    MS-DOS Explained

    |-The Ultimate Guide To MS-DOS-|

    OK, first of all Windows, I hear screams of lame security and I agree. However every newbie I have every known runs Windows and with the new Script Kiddie culture it is now easier to use Windows as an assault computer and the need for Linux/other OS has declined.
    So I have decided to begin with Windows and DOS.
    The main reason for this text is that DOS is vital to computer history. The term DOS [ disc operating system ] has become synonomous with operating systems.

    This tutorial will show you how to do basic groundwork using MS-DOS which most of you will have especially if your running Windows.
    I will begin with DOS as without it Windows is nothing so if you aint interested in DOS then skip to the Windows section.

    MSDOS is probably the most widely used operating system in the world today. It is produced by a company we all know Microsoft and was first called
    QDOS [ Quick and Dirty Operating System ] but has developed considerably since then.
    The original DOS system was made by Tim Patterson and was only 4000 lines of assembly code.

    * MSDOS Commands
    Since MSDOS was developed later than CP/M it has a wider range of commands available to the user. With nearly 30 built in commands and several additional programs available MSDOS is a powerful operating system.
    Here is a list of the main MSDOS commands.

    BREAK- allows break key interuption during programs
    CLS- clears the video display
    COPY- copies files
    CTTY- defines the device to be used for input
    DATE- sets and displays the date
    DEL- deletes named files
    DIR- displays list of files on disc
    ERASE- erases all files on disc
    MKDIR- makes a sub-directory
    PATH- sets up search path through sub-directories
    PAUSE- stops operation for user response
    PROMPT- selects the character to be used as the system prompt
    REM- identifies a remark line which the system displays on the screen not executed
    REN- renames files
    RMDIR- deletes sub-directory
    TIME- sets and displays current time
    TYPE- lists contents of file to the display
    VER- gives the version number of the operating system
    VERIFY- sets the discs to read after write to verify data

    >>>External command files normally supplied with MSDOS include-

    CHKDSK- checks the file structure of discs
    DISKCOPY- copies discs
    EDLIN- simple line editor
    FORMAT- formats blank discs
    MORE- pages output into single screens
    RECOVER- salvages programs from currupt discs
    SORT- used to sort data

    Although it is unlikely that this section will be used by a lot of people i have included it in case anyone ever needs to load MSDOS whatever the reason or problem may be.

    OK, here we go MSDOS is supplied on a single floppy disc, these days it should come with Windows. Search around for the disc then stick it in to your computer.
    After the MSDOS disc has been inserted you will get a reply on your computer screen, ending with the system prompt
    This shows you that MSDOS has loaded, and is waiting instruction.
    NEXT we have to check the directory..

    Now that we have the system prompt we can check what programs are present on the disc.
    To do this we use the DIR command, by entering this we will get a list of all files in drive A. {a>_}
    A whole load of information will pass the screen eventually stopping at the number of files and how much space is available on the disc.
    If there are loads of files on the disc, then the DIR command will try display all of these on a single screen.
    To modify this we can add a /W suffix.
    which tells DOS to display the directory in wide format.
    However this omits the file size and date of last amendment.
    So another option is to add the suffix /P
    This shows 23 lines of the directory to be displayed, and a keystroke moves onto the next 23 lines.

    The copy command is in-built into DOS. With copy you can move files from disc to another.
    When copying files the new file can have a new name if required.
    The command
    COPY File1.txt File1.bak
    will make an exact copy of file1.txt.

    When copying files it is possible to give the new copy file a different name than the origanal just as in Windows.
    DOS also allows you to rename files without copying them.
    REN is used for this command.
    REN File1.txt Fileone.txt
    Also the command
    will rename all .txt files as .doc files on a disc.

    To delete unwanted files use the DOS command DEL.
    As with COPY and REN you can remove all files in one go with the command
    but you will recieve the prompt
    Be careful with this command DOS is not designed to recover accidently deleted files.

    Files such as .txt files can be specified in the directory in DOS using the command
    this will show all files such as .txt or .doc
    Also remember DOS directories are not in alphabetical order.

    MSDOS assumes that any file you create with .BAT is a batch file and will execute any commands in the file sequentially.
    By creating a .BAT file you can perform complex and repetitive tasks easily.
    One of the uses for a batch file is to configure the computer when it is on. For this purpose DOS looks for the AUTOEXEC.BAT file which stands for
    AUTOmatically EXECute .BATch

    The type of file on a disc is indicated by the suffix that follows also known as its extension.
    Here is a list of extensions.
    .ASM - 8086 assembly language source code
    .BAK - backup file
    .BAS - basic source code
    .BAT - batch command file
    .COM - executable command file
    .EXE - relocatable executable file [most commen]
    .LIB - library file
    .MAP - list file from linker
    .$$$ - temporary system generated file

    There are many more but too many to name.
    %%%hint: viruses usually contain odd extensions such as .VBS etc. but fool user by appearing in an e-mail like so
    this can easily fool relaxed users.

    Normally MSDOS prompts the user with the current drive letter
    However the system prompt can be altered by software to produce a customized prompt.
    This is done by entering PROMPT followed by text or special characters.
    HERE is a list of some of them
    $$ the '$' character
    $t the current time
    $d the current date
    $p the current directory of the hard drive
    $v the version number
    $n the default drive
    $g the '>' character
    $i the '<' character
    $b a blank space
    $s a space [leading only]
    $h a backspace

    Each time you enter a command in DOS it is stored in a special place in the memory known as a template.
    So to save time with writing in commands they can be altered to 1 or 2 keystrokes.
    However these vary from machine to machine so youll have to see what applies to your pc.
    HERE is an example of Command Editing..
    if you wanted to TYPE a .txt file and mispell TYPE as BYTE then the following commands will correct the line.
    BYTE File1.txt

    which results in
    TYPE File1.txt

    Ok so you played around with DOS but now you just want to look at porn on the net or download music for free cos youre cheap but you wanna be secure doing it, well here is the three easiest ways to do so beginning with encryption that is encrypting porno so your parents dont see...


    Just a note, check out Negative's tutorial on Encryption, this is a very basic rough guide and I just posted it as I wrote it a long time ago and thought I'd put it up!

    Basic Encryption


    1=what is encryption?
    2=basics of encryption and decryption
    3=cryptography and pgp

    1. what is ENCRYPTION

    This text deals with encryption, what exactly it is and PGP, as well as how others can decrypt your encrypted files. Encryption is a very useful resource to the hacker that wants to keep his exploits private. By reading
    this text carefully you can safeguard your files from attacks.

    2. the basics of encryption and decryption

    Encryption means making a simple .txt file unreadable. when you write a simple .txt file it is in "plain text".
    however if you encrypt this file it becomes unreadable. Before a password is entered this text is known as cipher text. When however you decide to change this cipher text back into plain text it is called decryption.

    EG. ENCRYPTION-->turns text into
    CIPHER TEXT-->which can be changed by
    DECRYPTION-->into good ol'
    PLAIN TEXT-->you can now read your file..

    3. cryptography and PGP

    Cryptography is a mathematical science and well in the more english sense of the word is the uncovering or conversion of cipher-text.
    In maths it means to encrypt or decrypt data so maths is strongly associated with cryptography.
    It is possible to secure files so well it could take years and years to decrypt that is why encryption is so important on an insecure place such as the internet.
    One of the best encryption programs on the net is PGP [pretty good privacy].

    get it at: www.pgp.com

    its features include compressing the file to save you space. it then creates what is known as a session key.
    This session key uses a private encryption algorithm that encrypts the file.
    The two keys ivolved the session key and the recipients key are encrypted together.

    PGP does not use normal passwords but long passphrases which can involve both lower, upper and number characters to deter dictionary attacks from password crackers.
    Most password crackers will not contain word-lists with such characters.

    4. security

    Encryption if used right can make your information unbreakable but there are
    ways in which its misuse can lead to succesful "cracks" on your private information.

    I will begin with trojans and virii

    If your computer became infected with a trojan the attacker may run a key logger [program that collects all your keystrokes and sends them to your attacker]. The attacker will then be able to see your passphrase, this may also occur with certain viruses.

    Next stupid passphrases/words
    A very obvious mistake made by people is a very simple password is used and the attacker simply guesses it. The whole encryption process is useless with these passphrases.
    Examples of bad passphrases include
    -your name
    -i love you
    -your area
    If someone is using a brute force attack on you such easy popular passwords will be included in some text file and they will achieve access.
    Try a long one with numbers as well as upper and lowercase letters.
    EG. d0Ntu53sTUp1dP4Ssw0rD5
    that type of stuff, something youll remember.
    BUT dont write it down on pieces of paper near you computer and
    or else if a hacker gets into one file hell get into every password protected file/site/e-mail account you have!

    Ok so whats the best way to secure your puter, you know the answer, firewall. Here we go an explanation.

    Firewall Info

    Not really a tutorial but some nice info.

    Packet Filter Firewalls

    Packet filters determine whether packets can enter or exit a network. The firewall examines the TCP/IP header and accepts or rejects it. Packet filters are based on a set of predefined rules.

    -does not impede traffic (network performance does not suffer)
    -simple to implement
    -provide logging facilities
    -transparent to end users

    -cannot prevent ip spoofing
    -are passable by crackers/hackers
    -poor config/rules can allow access

    Application Gateways

    application gateways are also known as a proxy. these proxies restrict network traffic to a specified application. ie http or ftp.

    -data is transferred to specific applications
    -provides logging
    -provides no direct connection to the internet from within a network (ie business or school)

    -a proxy must be built for each app
    -can impose a small overhead on a network
    -if the proxy fails then access is lost

    Circuit Level Gateways

    they use a proxy, but can only filter on the basis of header information in the IP packets. TCP connections are relayed to determine whether they are authorized. Packets are not filtered or processed.

    Stateful Inspection Firewalls (Dynamic packet filters)

    Packet filtering rules are used. All the data in the packets from the network layer up to the application layer is examined. These firewalls verify if the connection is legitimate. They also remember port numbers used by applications; once an application is closed the firewall closed the open port.

    Hybrid Firewalls

    combination of Stateful Inspection and Application Gateway firewalls.

    Finally we hear all the time about viruses wreaking havoc, well MS aint gonna help ya, look at MsBlaster for Christs sake. Best get yourself a survival kit...

    Basic Virus Survival

    I was going to put one of my old tutorials in here, but then something happened. I got a phone call a day or two ago from a good friend. He was telling me ‘Help I got a Virus or something…!’
    So I went around he is running Windows ME [he is an avid gamer and mp3 lover] and points out that all his Word Documents have been overwritten to show some gibberish.
    I asked him how he had come to receiving the virus and well this is the reason I am writing this tutorial. He replied 'Just opened some e-mail and next time I booted, this happened'.
    He was lucky I suppose, hell viruses come in malicious forms and this was a fairly harmless virus in my opinion. I checked up his 'anti-virus’ protection, Id been advising him for weeks about the dangers of Trojans and viruses and what they can do to your system. Of course he simply ignored me.
    First thing I checked up was backup, this as anyone knows is very important, little did I know he had shunned the idea and he simply shrugged. Lets just say Rescue Disk, AntiVirus Software, were not on his agenda!. He had not bothered to protect himself in any way but I assumed this little shock would wake him up. It did.
    So now I want to focus on a security issue which is widespread but can be prevented with a little common sense. Firstly we must define the Virus and take a peek at what kind of malicious code there is.
    Ok a virus is an executable program; it can affect the following areas of computer:
    System Sectors, files, Batch Files, Source Code…
    …And more, they can be described in many ways, from what size they are, stealth, their methods, polymorphic and well the list goes on, it’s impossible to define them all with new virus’ coming out daily.
    Now lets just clear up some myths about viruses, you can infect yourself from a: executing the program [e-mail attachments are a very common method of spreading virus'] b: booting from an infected floppy or hard disk. Now remember it must be executed so be skeptic about what you open, many virus send you e-mails from trusting friends who unwillingly have passed you on a virus.
    So how do you know you have been infected, well unexplained growth of .exe or .com files is a dead giveaway. Your computer may run slower, system resources depleted and unusual behavior from your box are major signs.
    Well what happens when the damage is done and it’s all too late. Lets not think about that and look at prevention to cure the virus attack. As you should know being cautious is a great advantage, i.e. making sure attachments are not viruses and don’t just click on anything that arrives in your mailbox [your hand is the enemy!].
    Get yourself good antivirus software, which should be updated, as often as possible, set your antivirus to scan mail attachments. This will rapidly reduce the chances of infecting yourself.
    Back up, back up, back up! I cannot stress this enough, imagine losing all your important data through your own laziness. People who assume it wont happen to them are taking major risks, who knows what may happen in the future. Create a rescue disk which programs such as Norton Utilities will allow you to.
    Now remember not all unusual activity on your computer is virus activity, it is common for people to assume when they are having problems that they have a virus or Trojan! Also keep regular scans of your computer but don’t overly trust your AV software, use your own iniative to keep a virus free system.
    You could get yourself a copy of a Linux distro which means less chance of virus attacks, there are Linux viruses but they dwindle when compared to the huge amount of Windows viruses.
    Anyway Good Luck!

    So there you go, now all you gotta do is leanr some Linux, networking, nuclear physics, hebrew etc. and one day you will be uber.

    lots of hugs and kisses, wait no, yours in cyber space, wait someone else says that, ah FECK IT bye!!


  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2002
    nice tut i havent finished the whole thing but looks really good. Thanks a lot, it learned something
    Support your right to arm bears.

    ^^This was the first video game which i played on an old win3.1 box

  3. #3
    Token drunken Irish guy
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Its kind of a merging of my old threads, havent been very productive, used to knock the feckers out weekly. Slacking tis what Im doing!

  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2002
    ennis, maybe you can answer this question, lets say i posted a tutorial a year ago and i saved it. could i repost it again in the tutorial thread?
    Support your right to arm bears.

    ^^This was the first video game which i played on an old win3.1 box

  5. #5
    Token drunken Irish guy
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    I'm sure you could if you think its relevant or worthy of being reposted due to new members. I'm sure its in Neg's tutorial list anyway and you could bump it up.

  6. #6
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Whoa! I learned about about DOS. Thanks man.. (I copyed this all in notepad because I am going to use it later.)

  7. #7
    They call me the Hunted foxyloxley's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    3rd Rock from Sun
    Swift :
    Although I'm cetain that Ennis will appreciate your comments, it is an OLD thread .........
    over TWO YEARS old ...........

    site ettiquette is to send the OP a PM for comments such as yours, and only to ad to an old post when you have something of value to add to the topic.

    and welcome to AO
    55 - I'm fiftyfeckinfive and STILL no wiser,
    OLDER yes
    Beware of Geeks bearing GIF's
    come and waste the day :P at The Taz Zone

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