Wednesday, February 28, 2007

VMware gripes

On the heels of a New York Times profile of the company and its many complaints against Microsoft, VMware posted a white paper to its Web site that detail its gripes, which range from licensing terms, to closed programming interfaces and formats. (The white paper is dated February 23, but seems to have been made public some time after The Times story was published.)

"Microsoft is leveraging its ownership of the market leading operating system and numerous applications that are market leaders in their respective categories (Exchange, SQL Server, Active Directory) to drive customers to use Microsoft virtualization products. Their tactics are focused on software licensing and distribution terms (for SQL Server, Exchange, Windows Server, Vista) and through the APIs and formats for virtualized Windows," the white paper continued.

Among VMware's specific charges:

• "Microsoft has posted language that restricts use of their VHD-formatted VMs ("VHDs") to MS Virtual Server and/or Virtual PC only (as opposed to VMware products, which also run VHDs)."

• "Microsoft is strictly enforcing their VHD format on users and ISVs as a closed ecosystem and not allowing compatibility or translation with other formats."

• "Recent changes in Microsoft licensing have taken a negative stance on mobility and virtualization. These new Microsoft licensing policies ask for permanent assignment of operating system licenses to hardware and then restrict the movement of those operating system licenses, even for virtualized environments that can be moved seamlessly from machine to machine."

• "Microsoft has recently announced a prohibition on virtualizing the less expensive versions of Vista (Vista Home Basic and Vista Home Premium)." Microsoft also is limiting the number of times virtualized environments can be moved to different machines, and what kinds of content (anything "protected by Microsoft digital, information, or enterprise rights management technology" can be virtualized.

• "Microsoft has developed proprietary APIs (including but not limited to what Microsoft calls "Enlightenments") for Longhorn that manage communication between Windows and Microsoft's hypervisor. Microsoft disclosed these API specifications at the WinHEC conference in June 2006, but is not permitting use of these APIs by other virtualization vendors or open source projects. The one exception is Novell, which agreed to give Microsoft critical operating system intellectual property rights and ongoing payments to Microsoft in return."


Thursday, February 8, 2007

Acunetix puts a stop to identity theft in Universities

American Universities and Non-Profit-Organizations to benefit from a Free Website Security Audit offered by Acunetix

Kirkland, Washington – January 09, 2007 – Institutions for higher education and Not-For-Profit Organizations are experiencing a surge in attempts aimed at hacking their data. The more recent known examples were perpetrated against UCLA, the University of Texas, and Mississippi State University. Acunetix, a leading vendor of web application security solutions, is offering all American Universities and Not-for-profit Organizations a complimentary website audit through its recently launched service, Acunetix SiteAudit.

Last month, a hacker infiltrated a massive database from the University of California, Los Angeles, containing personal information (including social security numbers, dates of birth, home addresses and contact information) on 800,000 people in one of the worst computer breaches ever at a US university.

“There is a general lack of awareness about web application security,” stated K. J. Vella, VP Sales and Operations at Acunetix. “Organizations, in general, do not realize if your web apps are weak, hackers will find a way to get in and steal your data. What makes the situation worse is that you’ll never know they’ve been in. Hackers will not leave a trail, your data will still remain there but a copy of it resides in its entirety elsewhere either for immediate sale or for later use.” “Buyers could use the data to fraudulently apply for cell phones, credit cards or to launch cyber terrorist attacks. Whichever the aim, organizations are duty-bound to protect the data entrusted them,” explained Vella.

University systems are usually highly decentralized which makes it hard to ensure tight security. Furthermore, Not-for-profit organizations might not have the in-house expertise needed to run auditing software efficiently and effectively, nor want to maintain in-house testing since this adds to overhead.

Acunetix is, therefore, offering the possibility of having their website audited at no cost.

“SiteAudit normally retails for $395. We are now offering Universities and Not-for-Profit Organizations the opportunity to get their website and web applications checked by one of the leading solutions found on the market place today for free. Our web security experts will audit a website and issue a full report,” explained Vella.

About Acunetix SiteAudit
Acunetix SiteAudit is performed by Acunetix’s web security experts using Acunetix Web Vulnerability Scanner. Acunetix SiteAudit:

  • Provides an immediate and comprehensive website security audit
  • Ensures website is secure against web attacks
  • Checks for SQL injection, Cross site scripting and other vulnerabilities
  • Audits shopping carts, forms, and dynamic content
  • Scans entire website and web applications including Javascript / AJAX applications for security vulnerabilities.

More information about Acunetix SiteAudit is available at:

How to apply
Universities and Non-Profit-Organizations can apply for a free site audit by visiting or by sending an email to, including general contact details and website URL.

About Acunetix
Acunetix was founded to combat the alarming rise in web attacks. Its flagship product, Acunetix Web Vulnerability Scanner, is the result of several years of development by a team of highly experienced security developers. Acunetix is a privately held company with headquarters based in Europe (Malta), a US office in Seattle, Washington and an office in London, UK. For more information about Acunetix, visit:;

Wednesday, February 7, 2007

5 reasons to switch to an IP PBX

The benefits of replacing your old PBX with an IP PBX

Summary: (article description)

This whitepaper explains the top 5 reasons to throw out the old PBX and replace it with a new software based IP PBX. The whitepaper also provides a brief explanation of what an IP PBX is, how it works in a computer network and how it integrates with VOIP providers and PSTN Gateways.

What is an IP PBX?

An IP PBX is a complete telephony system that provides telephone calls over IP data networks. All conversations are sent as data packets over the network. The technology includes advanced communication features but also provides a significant dose of worry-free scalability and robustness that all enterprises seek.

Enterprises don’t need to disrupt their current external communication infrastructure: An IP PBX is able to connect to traditional PSTN lines via a VOIP gateway - so an enterprise can keep its regular telephone numbers.

How it works

Figure 1 - how an IP PBX integrates into the network

An IP PBX system consists of one or more SIP phones, an IP PBX server and optionally a VOIP Gateway to connect to existing PSTN lines. The IP PBX server functions in a similar manner to a proxy server: SIP clients, being either soft phones or hardware-based phones, register with the IP PBX server, and when they wish to make a call they ask the IP PBX to establish the connection. The IP PBX has a directory of all phones/users and their corresponding SIP address and thus is able to connect an internal call or route an external call via either a VOIP gateway or a VOIP service provider. More information and commonly asked questioned about IP PBXs can be found on IP PBX, SIP & VOIP FAQ -

The top 5 Reasons

Reason #1: Much easier to install & configure than a proprietary phone system:

An IP PBX runs as software on a computer and can leverage the advanced processing power of the computer and user interface as well as Windows’ features. Anyone proficient in networking and computers can install and maintain an IP PBX. By contrast a proprietary phone system often requires an installer trained on that particular proprietary system!

Reason #2: Easier to manage because of web/GUI based configuration interface:

An IP PBX can be managed via a web-based configuration interface or a GUI, allowing you to easily maintain and fine tune your phone system. Proprietary phone systems have difficult-to-use interfaces which are often designed to be used only by the phone technicians.

Reason #3: Significant cost savings using VOIP providers:

With an IP PBX you can easily use a VOIP service provider for long distance and international calls. The monthly savings are significant. If you have branch offices, you can easily connect phone systems between branches and make free phone calls.

Reason #4 Eliminate phone wiring!

An IP PBX allows you to connect hardware phones directly to a standard computer network port (which it can share with the adjacent computer). Software phones can be installed directly onto the PC. You can now eliminate the phone wiring and make adding or moving of extensions much easier. In new offices you can completely eliminate the extra ports to be used by the phone!

Reason #5: Eliminate vendor lock in!

IP PBXs are based on the open SIP standard. You can now mix and match any SIP hardware or software phone with any SIP-based IP PBX, PSTN Gateway or VOIP provider. In contrast, a proprietary phone system often requires proprietary phones to use advanced features, and proprietary extension modules to add features.


An investment in a software based IP PBX makes a lot of sense, not only for new companies buying a phone system, but also for companies who already have a PBX. An IP PBX delivers such significant savings in management, maintenance, and on going call costs, that any company should be looking at upgrading to an IP PBX.

About the Author (article resource box)

Nick Galea is CEO of 3CX,, a developer of IP PBX software. Nick has written articles & whitepapers about Network administration, Telecommunications Software, Security & VOIP.

3CX maintains a very good VOIP and SiP faq in several language, such as in German VOIP and SIP, French, Spanish, Polish, and other languages.
You can also find here information on SIP trunking, VOIP Gateways and other PBX related information.

Monday, February 5, 2007

3CX Launches IP PBX, VOIP and SIP information center in 22 languages

Answers common questions about VOIP, SIP and IP PBXs in FAQ-style

Nicosia, Cyprus – 15, January 2007 – 3CX today launched an IP PBX, VOIP and SIP FAQ which aims to educate visitors across the globe about the technology, in a clear and concise manner. Whereas numerous sites and articles exist about VOIP and SIP, 3CX has attempted to keep the answers concise and relevant, for users not to get bogged down with technical details.

Information about VOIP and SIP is often only available in English. With its multi-lingual information centre, 3CX is aiming to inform the significant percentage of the global population that do not understand or have difficulty understanding English.

“The use of VOIP and IP PBX is growing at a staggering rate,” said Nick Galea 3CX CEO. “However, how many people actually understand its pros, or how they can set about taking advantage of it in their own environment? The IP PBX, VOIP & SIP FAQ will be a useful resource for those who wish to educate themselves on the subject.”

Languages available

The IP PBX, VOIP & SIP FAQ is available in 22 languages:



















Traditional Chinese

Simplified Chinese



About 3CX

3CX is a privately held company with a management team backed by years of experience in developing and selling network infrastructure software. It maintains a global presence with localized information available in German, Spanish, French, Portuguese, Japanese, Traditional Chinese, Simplified Chinese, Korean, Italian, Dutch, Russian, Polish, Arabic, Greek, Czech, Danish, Finnish, Hungarian, Turkish, Norwegian, Swedish.

For more information contact Tamara Borg (

3CX Ltd Cyprus.

Engomi Business Center

1, 28th October Street

2414 Nicosia, Cyprus

Tel: +357 22461392

Fax: +357 22444033

3CX Ltd UK.

Communications House

26 York Street

W1U 6PZ London, UK

Tel: +44 (0) 845 230 4024

Fax +44 (0) 845 230 4025


All product and company names herein may be trademarks of their respective owners.