LAB NOTES

LAB NOTES

Dirty little DLL. The dvwssr.dll file on Web servers running Microsoft Windows NT 4.0 and Internet Information Server 4.0 exposes them to being overrun by hackers.

Microsoft Corp.'s security team recently announced that the Dynamic Link Library file accesses an unchecked buffer. If overrun with random data, the DLL file could cause a crash. One solution Microsoft offers: Upgrade to Windows 2000.

Here's a cheaper solution: Delete all occurrences of dvwssr.dll. For details on how to fix this problem, visit www.microsoft.com/technet/security/bulletin/fq00-025.asp.

Set your clocks. It's way past Jan.1, but you might still need to reset computers' system clocks to the correct time.

Visit www.time.gov for a Java applet that shows the exact official time, courtesy of the National Institute of Standards and Technology, Commerce Department and U.S. Naval Observatory.

Servers slim down. The demand for servers is growing, but more and more of them are losing weight to fit into racks. The lab heard about a 1U-high server from IBM Corp.'that's a height of 1.75 inches, thinner than many notebook computers. The Netfinity 4000R accepts one or two Pentium III processors, 2G of RAM and three bays for a CD-ROM drive plus a 9G or an 18G SCSI hard drive.

Dell Computer Corp.'s dual Pentium III server is 2U thick'about 3.3 inches. The PowerEdge 2450 incorporates RAID storage with an Ultra3 SCSI adapter and up to four 18G hard drives.

IBM's Netfinity 4500R is 3U thick'about 5.5 inches. It has up to 216G of internal storage as well as dual Pentium III processors and more.

Bigger but smaller. Also in the size department, desktop PCs are loading up on hard drives of 40G or more. Notebooks won't be far behind. IBM released a 32G drive for road warriors. At about 13 millimeters thick, expect the Travelstar 12GH in portables later this year.

Two-step with SpeedStep. Chip maker Advanced Micro Devices Inc. of Sunnyvale, Calif., is aiming to outdo Intel's SpeedStep technology, which clocks down the processor when a notebook is not plugged in to save battery life.

AMD's Mobile K6-2+ and K6-III+ processors will clock down, too, but they also scale back in motherboard bus speed and voltage, providing 30 percent to 50 percent more battery life. Expect the processors to reach notebooks by midyear.

Speaking of AMD's mobile processors, Hewlett-Packard Co. and Toshiba America Information Systems Inc. have begun integrating AMD chips into their product lines.

'Michael Cheek

E-mail: mcheek@gcnlab.com

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