Source Leaving Microsoft Sitting on the Fence?
The open source model, with special regard to Linux, has no
doubt become a formidable competitor to the once sole giant
of the software industry, Microsoft. It is expected when the
market share of an industry leader becomes threatened, retaliation
with new product or service offerings and marketing campaigns
refuting the claims of the new found competition are inevitable.
However, in the case of Microsoft, it seems they have not
taken a solid or plausible position on the use of open source
applications as an alternative to Windows.
I read on a daily
basis the latest ventures of Microsoft from the much publicized
"war on Linux" to surrendering and publishing portions
of their source code. In their first argument, executives
of the Redmond Washington company regard Linux as everything
from a "waste of money" to a threat to the well-being
of the software industry. During these arguments, Microsoft
executives stick by their original perception, attempting
to position open source software as a less secure, less technologically
sound option that does not only offer inferior solutions but
is inherently bad for the financial and developmental growth
of the industry. Although proved wrong time and time again
by accredited analysts, journalists and customers it is a
fair position for a corporation to take when their competition
has them against the ropes.
is puzzling to me is that Microsoft never seems to stick with
that argument. Whether they are intentionally or unintentionally
releasing portions of their source code to the public, they
themselves have implemented a "shared source initiative"
in recent years. Coincidentally, this program mirrors the
benefits brought fourth by the open source development process
in which segments of their source code are released to the
public intended to be used as a resource for developers. Originally,
backing up the view that open source was substandard and dangerous,
the program operated under a "look don't touch"
policy, however, in recent months the software giant has changed
its tune offering participating developers the chance to modify
and propose ways to improve upon the available code.
manager of Microsoft's shared source initiative defines the
benefits of the program as something developers and Microsoft
will benefit from. Further emphasizing his claim Matusow was
quoted as saying "by allowing others to modify the code,
Microsoft benefits by increasing Windows development, while
programmers benefit from improved tools." Additionally,
in a separate interview, he was further quoted as saying "the
whole function of shared source is to learn from open-source
and apply that to how we do business." The irony of this
project is that it follows a similar model to that of open
source development and consequentially is the exact ideal
proprietary developers like Microsoft so vehemently condemn.
To create and
promote a program such as Microsoft's shared source initiative,
while at the same time making such harsh comments to the Linux
and open source community concerning their development model,
confirms the theory that the executives at Microsoft truly
do see the merit in open source and find those vendors operating
under that model to be a substantial threat to their business.
From a consumer point of view, on the other hand, Microsoft
sitting on the fence is an attempt to please everyone but,
in actuality, could prove to be debilitating. How can consumers
trust a company in which their whole business model and focus
is skewed based on the situations and actions of a particular
Wreski, CEO Guardian Digital, Inc.
Secure VPN Server Suite
Digital Secure VPN Suite is a powerful Virtual Private
Network solution for business operations on the Internet.
Protect the corporate network from malicious activity
by creating a secure connection over the Internet while
providing solid protection against Internet thieves
and vandals through endpoint security.
new avenues for communicating with the enterprise network
such as wireless and "always-on" broadband
connections are implemented, the requirement to ensure
secure integration with enterprise services will increase.
Industry-standard security and connectivity applications
allow organizations to leverage existing network resources
while monitoring activity to protect their corporate
online assets. Simplified Web-based management and comprehensive
support make building secure VPN connections for branch
offices and mobile users quick and effortless.
more about the Secure
VPN Server Suite
Digital In the News
Guardian Digital Launches Fully Open Source IDS
Digital's latest innovation, Internet Defense and Detection
System, the first open source intrusion detection and
prevention application was featured in this months Sys
Processor.com: Fundamentals For Keeping Information
Guardian Digital CEO, Dave Wreski shares his insight
with Processor.com editor Douglas Schwietzer on wireless
security, remote access and outsourcing.
I am hearing so much about Internet and network
security solutions. What is the best way to secure my
A. Unfortunately there is not
a "silver bullet" to network security. The
best way to keep your corporate or home network secure
is through a method we have discussed before, "defense
in depth". This is a term used to describe the
state in which security features should be implemented.
Basically, to ensure the overall protection of your
network, multiple security solutions should be implemented.
However, when utilizing a multi-layer security system
be sure it has a few key components such as intrusion
detection and prevention applications. These types of
security applications work hand-in-hand to detect an
unlawful network intrusion, alert administrators of
the discrepancy and prevent the intruder from causing
any serious damage. Also, quality intrusion detection
and prevention systems will include comprehensive auditing
and graphical reporting of attempted intrusions to give
administrators information necessary to hinder future
security breaches. Once again, however, I must stress
that although intrusion detection and prevention are
key network defenses; to truly optimize the security
of your network it is important to implement supplementary
security features as well including firewalls, virus
Behind the Shield editors encourage their readers to
submit questions. The most frequently asked questions
will appear in future issues. We look forward to answering
all your inquiries! Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Admin Magazine: Guardian Digital EnGarde Secure Linux
Digital's flagship product, EnGarde Secure Linux was
recognized by the editors of Sys Admin Magazine and
was recently featured in the publication.
& Tips from Experts
Workstation Security Guardian
Digital is pleased to provide Behind the Shield readers with
informative expert advice on what network security really
means. Each month a new topic of interest will be chosen to
supply you with useful tips and information not offered elsewhere.
This month, we'll have a brief discussion on securing desktop
desktop workstations is an integral part of network security
as a whole. A vast majority of security problems can be avoided
if proper precautions are taken on each workstation incorporated
within a network. The most frequent security mistake people
make when securing individual workstations is trusting the
security settings "out of the box". In most cases,
default settings are put into place by vendors to enhance
performance rather then security. Since it is impossible for
most regular vendors to establish the security needs of each
individual organization they supply solutions for (vendors
and developers of security solutions will probably be more
in tune with your needs), therefore, it is essential you configure
each workstations to suit your security requirements and be
sure to change that configuration as your needs change. Below
are some other suggestions to securing workstations on your
sure your workstation utilizes the latest version of the
chosen operating system.
all current software updates.
firewall software or hardware
anti-virus software and be sure to keep it up to date.
up all default network and Internet security settings.
and multi-national partners, like Net Dimensions, Inc. in
Alberta Canada, Guardian Digital is able to provide their
productivity and security solutions to customers worldwide.
is an innovative technology company that specializes in the
design, development, and progression of creative web-based
business solutions. It is through these solutions that this
dynamic team of designers, developers, and systems experts
plays an active role in the evolution of their clients' businesses.
was selected as a partner because its products compliment
Net Dimensions' service offerings. Running a secure hosting
platform that is easily managed by non-Linux experts provides
clients with the ability to decrease their IT costs. EnGarde's
option for integrity checks made becoming a reseller an infallible