A Security List
Known Exploited Vulnerabilities Catalog is the home of CISA’s current list of critical system security holes that should be addressed within any organization. Suggests checking it to “make sure your vulnerability scanners are looking for systems you missed, and get them patched ASAP.”
Cybersecurity Webinar Library features the latest security-related live webinars and a variety of on-demand content from the experts at Hornetsecurity. This ever-evolving list includes the latest insights, plus in-depth discussion of strategies and best practices for defeating today’s constant barrage of email threats—from phishing scams to data breaches—so you can learn how best to protect your digital assets.
A Training Resource
FOA Guide is the official Fiber Optic Association’s online guide to fiber optics, fiber broadband and premises cabling. You’ll find a large library of materials covering everything to do with fiber optics and premises cabling, from basic topics all the way to advanced. Also features links to “Fiber U,” an educational site full of free self-study programs and courses on the use of fiber in communication systems.
Oh Shit, Git!?! is designed to help you get out of the sort of messes that Git makes it easy to get into. Offers plain-language explanations of various problems and how they were resolved, which makes it possible to find answers without knowing the official name of whatever specific issue(s) you need to understand.
Under the Wire is a fun way to learn how to use Windows PowerShell in a variety of situations. This innovative training option was inspired by the Linux CLI wargame, Over the Wire, which owes its effectiveness as a training tool in no small part thanks to the game-style format.
Play with Docker Classroom is a playground for learning how to work with Docker. Provides a free, cloud version of an Alpine Linux VM on which to build and run Docker containers as well as an opportunity for playing with more-advanced features like cluster creation via Swarm Mode.
OverTheWire is an entertaining option for learning about cybersecurity principles and the methods hackers employ to exploit weaknesses. Offers a series Linux command-line games—each focused on a different exploit—so you can truly understand what you need to harden your systems against.
Learn Git Branching is an interactive, visual option for improving your Git skills from beginner through advanced. A set of increasingly difficult levels walks you through step-by-step feature demos and challenges designed to teach how to make the most of this powerful tool. The online sandbox gives you a safe place to practice new concepts.
Shares news about an underused Office feature: “If you go to this link and turn this on, the portal will be populated (over time) with all of your Office versions, additionally showing workstations that are behind on security updates.
You don’t need Intune for this either, I guess it works based on the UPNs logging into your tenant to the O365 Apps.
You can then also go into ‘Servicing’ > ‘Monthly Enterprise’ > and roll out the latest version to a set amount of PCs (or all) and set a deadline of, say, 1 day to get updated. You probably would not want to do that every month, but there is flexibility.
This may be old news, but I logged onto a dozen different clients and they did not have it turned on, so I guess not a lot of people know about it.”
We shares a suggestion for organizing your documentation:
“Use OneNote as a Knowledge Base! It has so many features that make using it as a KB so much easier than other forms like Word and PDF documents:
- Integrated graphs for excel spreadsheets or stat tracking—Copy/Paste from Excel and it will automatically paste the entire spreadsheet correctly into OneNote
- Built-in OCR for images posted anywhere in OneNote— OCR is native to OneNote, so take a screenshot, and all the words on that screenshot will be searchable!
- Freeform formatting—You can type, draw, insert pictures or shapes, or almost anything anywhere on any page in the entire OneNote.
- Collaboration—No need to share word documents anymore, you can give your team access to the OneNote and everyone can edit it all at the same time!
- Organization—You can organize the KB by topic, section, or any other way you can think of.
- Edit auditing—You can view the most-recent edits, who made them, and when they were made. No more trying to figure out who wrote the wrong thing in a KB!
- Microsoft Teams Integration—You can add it to a Teams chat and access the KB on your phone, tablet, or anywhere else that you have access to Teams.
- And more—Embedded files, links between pages/sections, notifications in each section for new content, the list goes on!
Every company I’ve been with so far had random KB folders full of documents or PDF’s, and I’ve always consolidated it into a OneNote. My coworkers and supervisors have always been impressed with the functionality that the OneNote KB provides, and loved the simplicity of putting everything in one place.”
Merge-MailboxFolders.ps1 is a PowerShell script to merge folders within a mailbox (or potentially even move folders and items between mailboxes). Works for multiple folders and can be automated for multiple mailboxes. Handles throttling so it works even with large O365 mailboxes. Appreciates this solution to “the manual folder shuffle in Exchange,” “I think this is the single most powerful and complete script I’ve ever found via ze google lifeline.”
PowerShell.org Youtube Channel is the place to find some insightful talks and presentations for those interested in learning more about PowerShell. You’ll find TechSession webinars, PowerShell Summit session recordings, and other educational content to enhance your understanding and help you improve your skills.
Calculating Optical Fiber Latency explains the method by which you can precisely determine the time delay in any fiber optic waveguide. Also includes a handy downloadable “Optical Fiber Latency Calculator.”
BTNHD YouTube Channel is loaded with how-tos on almost every subject related to Microsoft, VMware and Apple. You’ll also find info on other interesting tech topics, smartphones updates, product reviews and details on configuration and installation of enterprise software.
Windows Powershell Video Series provides the essentials for getting started with scripting in Powershell. Takes you through fundamentals and then works up to intermediate and advanced topics, so there’s a little something to be found regardless of skill level. Shares, “I used [these videos] to learn from the ground up.”
Elevate Teams Meeting Privacy with Explicit Recording Consent explains how you can address privacy concerns using a new Teams policy that ensures all participants are willing to be recorded before recording begins. Explains, “When this policy is in effect, the Teams meeting window will explicitly ask for everyone’s permission to record meetings. Your voice, video and screen share won’t get recorded unless your consent is given.”
DeploymentResearch YouTube Channel provides lots of helpful videos on OSD, ConfigMgr (SCCM), MDT, Windows 10 and more—as well as videos related to the popular ‘Deployment Fundamentals’ book series.
Everything you always wanted to know about optical is an updated version of the popular tutorial aimed at network engineers. Covers all the basics of how fiber works, plus details on how to select, install and maintain it.
A Free Service
Project TON is a BGP-speaking black hole service that provides a real-time list of internet bad actors for the world. Can be used to block unwanted, malicious or invalid traffic at the perimeter of your networks and offload some of the burden from firewalls and other security systems. Explains, “Peer for free, ad-hoc, and you get real data. Right now they have country-coded prefixes in communities and SSH brute force attackers in a different community.”
All in One Cheat Sheet is a single-stop reference loaded with helpful information for Linux sysadmins, devops, developers and networkers. You’ll find 156 quick-references, nicely organized with clarifying popups. Generously shared by the author, Linkology, who explains, “I wanted to have things in one place, so I created this mega cheat sheet. Hope it helps you too.”
Linux Cheat Sheets offers a large selection of concise cheat sheets nicely organized to cover all the various categories of Linux commands, so you can give your Google-fu a rest in finding what slips from your memory.
A Free Tool
Aigur is a generative-AI building assistant that makes it easy to create multi-user applications to manage pipelines, user plans and security. Choose among predefined pipelines or define the backend logic with a visual pipeline editor, and then each node in the pipeline will generate customizable code. Provides a simple API for managing users’ flows, offers predefined integrations for popular generative AI engines, a choice of security strategies and analytics. Currently free while in beta and will remain free for personal use thereafter.
TRex Stateless GUI is a graphical user interface for TRex. Allows you to connect and manage TRex instances up to TRex v2.87—with the ability to preview all ports along with their status and statistics; assign traffic to a specific port and start the traffic; update the bandwidth and multiplier options on the fly; a dashboard to view the port details, stream details, latency details, global statistics and charts; logger view to preview server messages and advanced logger view to see all the JSON requests sent to the server and its responses.
Excel Formula Bot is an AI-powered tool that enables you to create complex Excel formulas using everyday language. Can both generate a formula from your description as well as explain what a given formula does—including VBA, SQL and regex, apps scripts and more. Free version includes 5 formula requests per month.
WANulator is a testing tool that simulates different user access line speeds and assorted internet issues such as delay or packet loss. Allows you to easily test and optimize the performance of your network applications in different scenarios and for any protocols.
Nautobot is an open-source, extensible, flexible network source of truth and automation platform with lots of nice features that can integrate with network automation solutions. Offers GraphQL and native Git integration, REST APIs, webhooks and a plugin system that can be used to create network automation apps. We explains, “It’s a Netbox fork focused on Infrastructure as Code.”
Double Commander is a cross-platform file manager that takes what’s nice about Total Commander and builds in some new features. Offers two panels side-by-side with a tabbed interface, configurable button bar and custom columns; support for Unicode as well as Total Commander WCX, WDX and WLX plug-ins; multi-rename tool; extended search function with full text search in any files; built-in viewer for hex, binary or text; internal text editor with syntax highlighting; and more. We describe it as “…an open source multi-platform clone of Total Commander.”
Git Extensions is a more-intuitive way to manage your Git repositories in Windows. Its standalone interface serves as an effective, CLI-free means to control Git. Preferred by us, because “SourceTree hides and shortcuts too much git functionality.”
FreeScout is an open-source, self-hosted version of HelpScout that offers complete privacy and control through a PHP/MySQL application that’s easy to deploy. This powerful-yet-lightweight help desk and shared inbox can serve as a nice free alternative to Zendesk/HelpScout for providing efficient customer support. We recommends it “for ticketing.”
Far Manager is a text mode tool that helps you manage files and archives in Windows, with color highlighting and sort groups. Provides a simple, intuitive interface for viewing files and directories; editing, copying and renaming files; color highlighting and sort groups and more. Multi-language, easily configurable and extensible via a library of plugins.
NAV (Network Administration Visualized) is a device/vendor-agnostic monitoring program that features a customizable dashboard, extensive statistical overviews, on-the-fly configuration as well as full traceability of users and equipment.
TrueNAS allows you to build a professional-grade storage system for data-intensive applications. Features user-friendly access to the self-healing OpenZFS filesystem—with built-in RAID, powerful data management tools and the ability to automatically detect and repair silent data corruption and bit rot.
Night Eye is a tool that can enable dark mode on any website. Analyzes the colors on each page and converts them intelligently to provide a smooth and consistent dark mode, with no bright spots or flashes.
Ásbrú Connection Manager helps to organize your remote terminal sessions and automate repetitive tasks. Offers a simple GUI for managing remote connections, scripting possibilities; configurable pre/post connection local command execution, list of commands for local execution, and list of conditional executions on the connected machine; KeePassX integration; ability to connect via Proxy server; cluster connections; tabbed/windowed terminals and more.
Sydi is an open-source tool that assists with documenting your network. It collects data from servers and network equipment and then generates a report that is intended to serve as a foundation to more-easily create good documentation. Adds, “It’s an older tool, but it’s always been a favorite of mine.”
NTFS Permissions Reporter is a user-friendly way to generate reports on the permissions for Windows file servers that can go all the way down to the directory tree—so you can view which groups and users have access to certain directories. Results can be filtered by your specific criteria, and reports can be exported to file.
Open-Shell-Menu is a collection of utilities that can return some of your favorite features to newer versions of Windows. Revel in the glory of classic-style features like a Start menu for Win 7, 8 & 10; tool and status bars for Windows Explorer; title and status bars for Internet Explorer. Says, “I honestly have a hard time to navigate any Windows version > W2K without it.”
RustDesk is an open-source remote desktop solution that offers full control of data. This TeamViewer alternative works out-of-the-box, with no configuration necessary. Can use the public rendezvous/relay server or self host on your own equipment for maximum privacy. Likes it “for on demand remote support.”
LunaPic is a simple, straightforward online photo editor with a surprisingly good collection of fonts, filters and truly handy effects like transparent background. Requires no signup, login, or install.
HedgeDoc is a web-based, self-hosted, collaborative markdown editor. This open-source option allows a team to easily share ideas on notes, graphs and presentations in real-time. Finds it a good option “for knowledgebase.”
domain.Glass is a web-based lookup tool with transparent domain info “from AAAA to WHOIS.” Includes the DNS record, IP address hostname, and WHOIS lookup.
Akvorado is a flow collector for Netflow/IPFIX and sFlow that enriches the data with interface names and geo information, and then exports the results or lets you browse them via a web interface.
Kimai is a pro-grade, web-based time tracker that can handle hundreds of users, generate reports, create invoices and more. This open-source tool includes a long list of useful advanced features like 2FA, customizable roles and permissions, multiple timezones and budgeting.
Watchtower is a tool for automating Docker container-based image updates that allows you to update the running version of a containerized app through the Docker Hub or your image registry. You just push a new image to the hub/registry, and that image is pulled down automatically. Then your existing container is properly shut down and restarted, preserving whatever options were selected during initial deployment.
ChoEazyCopy is an intuitive GUI for Microsoft’s RoboCopy tool that enables you to easily create full mirror duplicates of file structures—including subdirectories and files, if desired—while preserving all the associated file info like date and time stamps, ACLs and more.
Cryptgeon is an open-source, self-destructing note sharing service. Ensures security by storing data only in memory rather than writing to the disk and keeping the encryption key away from the server so it cannot be used to decrypt your notes.
KeeWeb is an open-source password manager that’s compatible with KeePass. This cross-platform tool is available for browser and desktop and doesn’t require any server or additional resources.
privacy.sexy is a cross-platform, open-source tool for enforcing privacy and security best practices. Features hundreds of scripts, transparency, reversibility, extensibility, portability and more. Says to “ignore the stupid name.… Don’t even need O&O anymore honestly – This has been my goto for a year or so. Just gives you powershell code, no installation needed. Works like a champ.”
Sysinternals Live allows you to execute Sysinternals tools directly from the web without needing to find and manually download anything. You just enter the tool’s Sysinternals Live path into either Windows Explorer or a command prompt using live.sysinternals.com/<toolname> or \\live.sysinternals.com\tools\<toolname>. Considers this a can’t-live-without-it tool: net use <driver letter> \\live.sysinternals.com\tools
Ultimate Windows Utility is a tool for debloating and tweaking a Windows install. Features four main sections: install, debloat, features & old panels, and windows updates.
Excalidraw is an open-source virtual whiteboard that allows you to sketch diagrams that seem hand drawn. Offers a collaborative mode, export of diagrams to PNG and SVG formats, and saving locally in JSON.
Unstoppable Copier enables you to recover files from disks with physical damage like bad sectors, scratches or errors when reading data. Attempts to recover every readable piece and reassemble the file, which for most file types, can make it useable despite some parts being unrecoverable.
zoxide is a replacement for the common cd command that is designed to offer more-efficient navigation. It tracks which directories you use most frequently, so you can switch to them in just a few keystrokes. Works on all major shells.
Aquasnap is a Windows tiling window manager with a few cool features not found in other window-management tools. Explains, “AquaSnap is so good. Being able to pin a window on top and make it translucent while interacting with the window beneath it comes in handy so much more often than it sounds like it would.”
Yori is an open-source “DOS but not DOS” prompt that runs .cmd files and batch files for those that prefer CMD over bash shell commands. Offers the following enhancements: live autocomplete suggestions, Ctrl+to select values, improved tab completion, file matching, beyond MAX_PATH support for “DOS,” rich text copy, backquote support, background jobs, alias, which command, hexdump, lines, touch and more.
nsnotifyd monitors a set of DNS zones and will run a command when any of them change. Unlike cron, the script will run as soon as the zone changes instead of only at fixed intervals. We find it useful to “save the changes to subversion [when the DNS zone file changes].”
Dark Reading features comprehensive discussion on the latest cyberthreats and the technologies used to fight back. Offers current and in-depth information on cybersecurity threats and vulnerabilities, technology and trends, events and resources—all nicely organized into topical categories.
All Infosec News gathers all the latest news, blogs, podcasts and other pertinent information on cybersecurity, infosec, cryptography, privacy and threats to create an ever-current overview for IT pros. Appreciates it for keeping up with the latest vulnerabilities and security threats.
9to5Linux is a comprehensive online resource that covers the latest news, reviews, and tutorials in the world of Linux and related open-source software. Provides up-to-date information on the most-recent Linux distributions, software updates, security patches, and more.
LinuxToday offers the latest news and loads of helpful technical information for the Linux admin, with an international community of contributors focused on solving problems that range from personal computing all the way to enterprise-level IT operations.
Server World is simply described as a “nice website with a lot of procedures documented… a goldmine of information.” And appreciates, “Just bare bones, minimal, raw information, not making you login, accept tracking cookies, throwing overlays up about your ad block, begging you, showing you the top, splitting pages up by the paragraph so you have to next through a million ads.”
The Record brings you the latest cybersecurity news and exclusive interviews with cyber-focused leaders, policymakers and researchers as well as some experts who typically operate in the shadows.
The Brutalist Report is a stripped-down, to-the-point news site that brings you the latest tech stories without a hint of the graphical clutter or annoying popups that typically assault the sensibilities of those who preferred simpler times. Appreciates this source for “The day’s headlines delivered to you without bullshit.”
Network World offers serious domain expertise on the enterprise data center, including the latest networking, storage, servers and virtualization technologies. Provides insights intended to help data center managers with decisions related to building out agile infrastructure and extending networks for the IoT.
Silent Install HQ provides a nice library of info on silent installs and unattended command line switches. The site is the work of a 17-year veteran of application packaging, software deployment and desktop automation in the enterprise world. Includes detailed knowledge on best practices as well as practical how-to guides. Describes it as a “wonderful resource for getting apps pushed out silently.”
Mike Galvin’s blog shares a growing archive of interesting technical solutions and documentation on the author’s original scripts and utilities. Mike is a longtime tech veteran with expertise in server and desktop OS deployment, group policy, AD and scripting.
MSP Automator is a technical blog focused on helping MSPs to do their work more efficiently. Posts are in-depth and detailed, with a good number of screenshots to help you follow along. You’ll also find scripts, tutorials and some nice reviews.
imab.dk shares the tech musings of one Martin Bengtsson, a 17-year veteran of the Microsoft product world. You’ll find relevant thoughts, ideas and real-world scenarios in the areas of Microsoft Endpoint Manager, Configuration Manager, Intune, Office 365, Azure, Windows and more.
Automate the Boring Stuff with Python teaches you how to quickly write Python programs that do in minutes what would take hours by hand—with no programming experience required. Covers Python basics, its library of task-specific modules, input validation, tutorials on automating Gmail and Google Sheets, tips on automatically updating CSV files.