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SIPB Cluedump Series Schedule
Below is the draft schedule for the SIPB Cluedump Series for Fall 2006. This site will be updated as we decide on further details, and will be updated with any relevant updates on the series.
How Athena Works Date: September 11, 2006, 8:30 PM Presenters: Marc Horowitz (marc) Location: 3-133 Notes: Based off of ghudson's document Abstract: Athena is a ubiquitous part of the computing infrastructure at MIT, often taken for granted. Its history goes back more than twenty years, encompassing the invention of a number of technologies which are widespread today. However, its development marked a time of rapid change in distributed computing. In some ways, Athena is still well ahead of a typical distributed computing environment. I will discuss the history of Athena, its notable inventions, and give an overview of each of the network and workstation services which make up Athena today, including Kerberos, AFS, Moira, Hesiod, and the installation and update processes. Bio: Marc Horowitz arrived at MIT in 1988, when Athena was still a funded research project. As a Watchmaker (student developer) at Project Athena, he worked on the Kerberos, Zephyr, and Moira projects. Marc was also vice-chairman of the Student Information Processing Board in 1991, and Secretary in 1992. From 1992 to 2000, Marc continued to maintain an informal relationship with Athena, working on commercial versions of technologies born there, especially Kerberos, and participating in follow-on open source development and IETF standards activities. Today, he works with RFID software for BEA Systems in Burlington. Slides: A PDF is available here License: http://creativecommons.org/images/public/somerights20.png Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.5 License
AFS Date: September 18, 2006, 8:30 PM Presenters: Mitch Berger (mitchb) and Tim Abbott (tabbott) Location: 3-133 Abstract: AFS is the distributed filesystem product used by MIT, pioneered at Carnegie Mellon University and supported and developed as a product by Transarc Corporation (now IBM Pittsburgh Labs). It offers a client-server architecture for file sharing, providing location independence, scalability, security, and transparent migration capabilities for data. We will describe AFS, its various components and their interactions. We will talk about how AFS works, including discussion of important design and implementation details, including many useful quirks at most one of us was aware of a week ago. We will say something about Ubik (the distributed database protocol), replications, the Basic OverSeer server, afs_randomMod15(), and numerous other things that you've probably actually heard of. This talk should cover the information necessary to take you from knowing how to use AFS (fs la, fs lq) to understanding enough to debug interesting problems, and being able to administer an AFS cell without reading too much documentation. Slides: A PDF is available here License: http://creativecommons.org/images/public/somerights20.png Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.5 License
Athena Locker Management + Hesiod Date: September 25, 2006, 8:30 PM Presenters: Jacob Morzinski (jmorzins) Location: 3-133 Abstract: This cluedump will outline a couple topics, mainly concentrating on how software lockers on Athena work. We'll discuss what a "locker" is, and how your computer finds lockers when it needs files from them. We will move on to discussing how it works when you run software from lockers on Athena, and how you can install your own software -- either into your own personal locker, or into a special software locker. Slides: A PDF is available here License: http://creativecommons.org/images/public/somerights20.png Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.5 License
Technical overview of scripts.mit.edu Date: October 2, 2006, 8:30 PM Presenters: jbarnold Volunteers: tabbott Location: 3-133 Abstract: The scripts.mit.edu web script service allows individuals and groups to put CGI scripts (perl, php, python, ruby, scheme, etc) on the web using nothing more than an Athena account. Integrating this functionality with Athena presented certain challenges that had to be overcome before the service could be launched. In this talk, Jeff Arnold will describe the design and implementation of the SIPB script services. This talk is intended to be a technical overview of the internals of the services rather than a gentle introduction to the services (for documentation intended for potential new users, see http://scripts.mit.edu). Technical documentation about scripts is available at http://scripts.mit.edu/wiki, and the code is available via svn co https://scripts.mit.edu:1111. Our code is released under the GPL.
Columbus Day Holiday (No Cluedump) Date: October 9, 2006
Kerberos and Related Technologies Date: October 16, 2006 Presenters: hartmans Volunteers: Location: 3-133 Abstract: Sam Hartman will give an overview of Kerberos, SASL, GSS-API and related technologies. The talk will focus on what these technologies can do for users and application developers. The talk also describes how Kerberos works over the network enough to explain what its advantages and drawbacks are.
The Multics Way Date: October 23, 2006 Presenters: srz Volunteers: Location: 3-133 Slides: http://web.mit.edu/srz/www/slides/ Abstract: Multics was an extraordinarily influential operating system developed as a joint project of MIT, GE, and Bell Labs. Multicians went on to develop many other important systems in computer science, such as Unix, AFS, and Kerberos. This talk will discuss the design philosophy behind Multics and explain how it is an example of the MIT/Stanford style of design, captured by the phrase "the right thing". We will illustrate a few examples of the Multics design philosophy and discuss how features that Multics had over 25 years ago are still being added to modern Unix systems today. We will finish up with a brief overview of Multics resources available today that describe a well-documented, well-designed operating system.
The Law (copyrights, etc.) Date: October 30, 2006 Presenters: keithw Volunteers: Location: 3-133 Abstract: Could MIT listen in on your phone calls and read your e-mail? Does the DMCA really authorize torture? Why did a Republican group have to pay $537 to wdaher last year? Do those MIT singing groups need permission to release recordings of other people's songs? How did Aimee Smith beat the rap after getting arrested for calling the MIT Police "fucking pigs"? Could you get in trouble for buying from allofmp3.com? Keith might not be able to answer all these legal questions, but he will help you learn how to research legal issues for yourself. The cluedump will discuss American law and legal research, how to use Lexis-Nexis, and touch on topics relevant to technology, copyrights, and MIT.
E-mail at MIT Date: November 6, 2006 Presenters: mitchb Volunteers: nelhage, jmorzins Location: 3-133 Abstract: Where's that e-mail I was supposed to get three hours ago? Why did that e-mail from my advisor get flagged as spam? What if I don't want to buy five billion Rolex replicas? Just a few years ago, the standard e-mail setup for an ISP could be fairly simple - one server for your incoming mail (POP), and one for your outgoing mail (SMTP), and sometimes these were even the same server. Handling e-mail for a community with the size and characteristics of MIT, especially in today's world with the huge spam problem that plagues us all, is a very challenging task. Accordingly, MIT's e-mail architecture is orders of magnitude more complex than the setup people could expect from their ISP years ago. In this talk, we'll be discussing many of the details of MIT's e-mail setup, including the various types of mail servers MIT has and the roles they play. We'll talk about the paths mail takes through the twisty maze of the mail system, how we try to combat the spam problem and why it's so difficult, and how to interpret e-mail headers and do some basic debugging of mail delays. We'll also cover some of the tradeoffs between moira lists and mailman lists.
Debian-Athena Date: November 13, 2006 Presenters: tabbott Volunteers: Location: 3-133 Abstract: The Debian-Athena Project was an effort to create a modular port of the Athena environment to Debian GNU/Linux. The modulararity allows the user to select from various levels of integration of Athena with one's personal computer, varying from complete kerberos integration, to simply being able to blanche lists or run locker software without problems. SIPB's linux dialup, linerva.mit.edu, currently runs Debian-Athena with a few security enhancements. In this talk we will discuss the design and implementation of Debian-Athena and the various challenges that we faced in creating it.
WIN.MIT.EDU Date: November 20, 2006 Presenters: pbh Volunteers: Location: 3-133 Abstract: The creation of the WIN.MIT.EDU started in 1997. The domain started to be used by early pilot programs in 2001. The domain is now managed and operated by IS&T's OIS group and has been used by well over 10,000 individuals. Tonight's talk will attempt to focus on aspects of the domain that are of direct concern to students and talk about how students may add value to the domain.
SAP & MIT's Financial Systems Date: November 27, 2006 Presenters: mitchb, jhawk Volunteers: Location: 3-133 Abstract: As one might imagine, the finances of an entity like MIT are quite complex, and require similarly complex systems to keep track of them. Most people go through their time at MIT without knowing much about its finances, but lots of them often wonder where the money's being spent, what really happens after someone orders office supplies on the web, what an endowment actually is, why it took so long to get a reimbursement check, etc. In this talk, we'll attempt to demystify some of the inner workings of money at MIT. We'll discuss SAP (MIT's primary business and financial system), as well as other interrelated systems such as the Roles Database, the Data Warehouse, and ECAT. We'll cover much of the elusive vocabulary that people involved with MIT finance use, and will discuss and provide examples of the way MIT structures accounts and assigns permissions, how to examine account activity, the detailed process by which MIT purchases items, and a handful of other topics. While the focus will not be on the things that are specific to student group accounts, some of the information presented may be of interest or use to people involved in the treasuries of such groups.
Xen and virtualization Date: December 4, 2006 [didn't happen] Presenters: nelhage, aseering Volunteers: Location: 3-133 Abstract: Virtualization is the hot new topic in both software and hardware these days! Learn about the software behind virtualization, and how it works, as well as about Intel and AMD's new hardware extensions intended to make implementing virtualization easier. Then, learn more about VMWare and Xen, two of the leading virtualization products on the market today, how they work, how they're different, and what they can do.
Audio and Video Compression (HDTV, MP3 and DVD) Date: December 11, 2006 [didn't happen] Presenters: keithw Volunteers: Location: 3-133