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Secure vs insecure installs



> I stepped back from my PCs and had a thought:
> When a 'newbie' does his/her first installation of RedHat Linux, s/he
> will most often end up with a very insecure system. Most 'newbie'
> installations will remain insecure for weeks and even months or more
> before the 'newbie' first understands the need for, then learns how to,
> secure his/her system. (Been there, [hopefully] done that myself.)
> 
> Most of the participants on this list (me included) still tend to
> consider RedHat as being somewhere between a decent to a very good
> distribution.
> 
> Just a thought.
> Gustav

The above is true of all Linux installs, all UNIX OS installs I've seen,
and all WinTel product installs.  Add lots of bells and whistles to make
it look 'complete' and depend on the admin or user to overlay the
security.  When I install Solaris for a machine visible to the world, the
first thing I do is strip down inetd.conf to 2 or 3 lines, wrap those
services with tcpd, remove most of the startup scripts from /etc/rc2.d and
everything from /etc/rc3.d.  I need to do similar actions with any Linux
install, any HP-UX install, any AIX install ....  you get the
picture.  Would be nice if there was an option for a 'secure install'.

- rick warner -





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