Technology Insights

2001 Honda Civic: Air Conditioning & Power Locks Stopped Working And Emergency Brake Light On

I primarily write about computer hardware and software on this site however the intention has always been to write articles that assist people in resolving problems. A couple days ago my wifes car, which is a 2001 Honda Civic, started having multiple problems all at the same time. These problems included the air conditioner compressor not kicking on, the power locks not working, the emergency brake light was constantly on, and the dome light no longer came on when the doors were opened however the dome light itself still worked. After a little research I found out that all of these issues combined point to the MCU (Multi-Control Unit) being the problem. The bad part is the MCU is built into the fuse box so below is information on what I had to do to replace the fuse box.

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Technology Errors

Litespeed PHP: configure: error: xml2-config Not Found. Please Check Your libxml2 Installation

While compiling PHP on a Litespeed web server this evening I ran into multiple issues one of which related to the libxml2 package on the server. This can be confusing because on the server libxml2 was installed. Below is more information regarding the error located in the Litespeed Admin detailed log report which can be easily seen while compiling PHP from the web interface as well as information on what needs to be installed to resolve the error.

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Technology Insights

CentOS Yum: Disable A Specific Mirror

Installing a bunch of packages on a CentOS server today I ran into an issue where the CentOS Base mirror I was using was incredibly slow. First I checked to make sure that the yum-fastestmirror plugin was installed which it was. Next I attempted to clear the fastest mirror plugin cache by running “yum clean plugins” but I ended up with the same exact CentOS Base mirror yet again. Follow the directions below to disable a specific mirror from yum.

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Technology Insights

Overclock NVIDIA G210M & NVIDIA 9400G M GPU’s In A Dell Studio XPS 1340

This weekend I was investigating the capabilities of the two NVIDIA graphics cards in my laptop and a password cracking application called oclHashcat. The oclHashcat application uses OpenCL, the Open Computing Language, to utilize the processing power of your graphics cards GPU’s to crack passwords. My laptop is a Dell Studio XPS 1340 which utilizes Hybrid SLI technology to offer a good amount of graphics power while using the least amount of battery life possible. The laptop accomplishes this by mostly using an NVIDIA graphics card, which is a NVIDIA 9400G M, that is installed on the motherboard and only calling the second graphics card, which is a NVIDIA G210M, when it needs to render something in say 3D or higher quality than the 9400G M is equipped to handle. One thing I happened upon during my research was an NVIDIA utility that will easily allow you to overclock your NVIDIA graphics cards which I describe in more detail below.

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Information Security

Automated Password Cracking: Use oclHashcat To Launch A Fingerprint Attack

The below article explains how I used password fingerprinting to crack 500,000 password hashes in less than half a day completly automated. This article shows each command step by step, but only to describe the details of how password fingerprinting with oclHashcat works. The reality is that the password fingerprinting process can easily be automated by a script which is why we call it automated password cracking.

The Fingerprint Attack in my example had a success rate of about 80% in a 100% automated process after 12 hours with a single GeForce GTX 285. In order to reach the 500,000 cracked hashes I first created a list of 650,000 unique password hashes using a well known leaked password hash database. Once I had the list of 650,000 unique password hashes I started out by doing some easy attacks on the hashes such as a five character long brute force using all possible character sets which will provide an initial wordlist to start the fingerprint attack with. You really do not need to perform this step as explained further below. Once the initial brute force attack is complete the real fingerprinting starts. You will take the initial results, pipe them into the expander, and then run a combined dictionary attack against the hash list. Once we have results from the second set of attacks we use the expander again and issue another attack. You will see through the process, which is described in detail below, that results are returned at a very high rate by automated finding patterns and exploiting those patterns to return results.

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