Linux Distro To Include Pre-Installed Security Holes

Fake News written by James Baughn on Wednesday, August 15, 2001

from the consumer-is-always-right dept.

Proactive Synergy Paradigm, the Linux distro targeted at Pointy Haired Bosses, will now include built-in security flaws to better compete with Microsoft programs.

"The sheer popularity of Windows, Outlook, and IIS clearly shows that people demand security holes large enough to drive a truck through," said Mr. Bert Dill, the chief marketing director at P.S.P. Inc. "We're going to do our best to offer what the consumer wants. Just as Microsoft stole ideas from Apple during the 1980's, we're stealing ideas from Microsoft today."

Future releases of Proactive Synergy Linux will feature "LookOut! 1.0", a mail reader that automatically executes (with root privileges) e-mail attachments coded in Perl, JavaScript, shell script, Python, and Visual Basic.

"Hey, if it works for Microsoft, it can work for us," boasted Mr. Dill. "Now PHBs won't have to stick with Windows in order to have their confidential files secretly emailed to their colleagues by a worm. Better yet, this capability allows viruses to automagically delete unnecessary files to save disk space without wasting the PHB's valuable attention span."

Proactive Linux will also include "Unlocked Door 2.0", a web server that includes support for "telnet-over-http". The default installation allows users to issue commands (with root privileges, of course) remotely from their web browser by typing in an URL like this:

or even:

(A web-based form interface is also provided for those PHBs who don't feel comfortable with a command-line interface -- i.e., all of them.)

"The advantage here is that users can issue commands without fumbling with usernames or passwords or other annoyances," said Mr. Dill. "Our focus group research indicates that PHBs simply don't have time to worry about permissions -- they want to issue a command right now without getting an 'Access Denied' message. Unlocked Door provides the solution."

He added, "Let's see Microsoft compete with that! With Windows, the only way to achieve telnet-over-http is to install a virus or worm. What a hassle!"

Proactive Synergy also includes "peer-to-peer backup software". By default, an FTP daemon is installed with read and write access to every file on the system. This eliminates the need for expensive tape backups, RAID systems, and CD burners -- everything on the server will be mirrored by the larger Internet.

The next version of Proactive Linux should hit store shelves next month for the retail price of $1,000. Explained Bert Dill, "This will appeal to those PHBs that only buy expensive software from large stores. Of course, everything in this distro is free software. But hey, what they don't know can't hurt them, right?"

In related news, Red Hat has announced a marketing strategy that takes a completely different approach. Starting this fall, the company will distribute versions of its distro in shrinkwrapped boxes under the name "Red Hat Anti-Virus".

"Linux is the ultimate piece of anti-virus software," said a Red Hat spokesperson. "So why not put it on the market as such?"

A programmer at Symantec was quote as saying, "Dammit, why didn't we think of that?"

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