Sunday, July 6, 2014

How to make SIEM PoC effective?

Here is how you can make the SIEM PoC effective: 

1) List down the existing issues that need to be resolved 
2) List down the potential issues that could happen 
3) Ask for use case implementation for #1 and #2 
4) Observe the effectiveness of the solution as per your environment 
5) Observe usability, scalability and feature-set being offered 
6) Observe the skill level of the service provider / vendor 
7) Grade based on #3, #4, #5, #6 

Additionally, you may ask the following questions to your vendor to warm them up a little: 

1) Time it would take to go from installation to actual threat or security insights? 
2) Dedicated members or consultants needed to keep the solution up and inter-operable? 
3) Does the proposed solution provide alerts and provide step-by-step remediation? 
4) What if we don't have technologies in place that are needed to feed the SIEM?

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Best Data Recovery Tools

I recently faced an interesting challenge of recovering data from my 1TB portable external storage device. The device's MBR somehow malfunctioned and I was left with almost 700GB of raw data. As per Windows, the only option to access the storage device was to format it but before doing that I wanted to recover the data first!

I majorly used the following tools for recovery:
  • Easeus Data Recovery
  • Recuva
  • TestDisk
As per my experience:
  • Easeus was the fastest tool to recover data
  • Recuva was the fastest tool in detecting data on the malfunctioned device
  • TestDisk was the best tool in recovering data that both Easeus and Recuva tools were unable to find

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Inguinal Hernia Surgery

To have surgery or not is same as to marry or not...

I am going to jot down my experience related to the recent surgery experience I had for right inguinal hernia. Interestingly, my hernia was congenital (or that is what the doctor said) and appeared quite late in life.

To ensure readiness for the surgery - I had all the needed routine blood tests and even had an Ultra Sound for abdomen and lower abdomen to ensure if it really was hernia. Blood tests came back positive and Ultra Sound revealed hernia and nothing else.

So, I was ready for surgery. :)

March 22, 2014

The open surgery was scheduled for March 22, 2014 at 7 PM. I was pretty upbeat for the challenge and had only green tea and boiled egg around 10 AM and nothing else. Felt pretty hungry through-out the day but you have to follow the doctor's advice no matter what!

I reached the hospital around 3 PM and was escorted to a quiet room for (ever so needed) rest before the surgery. Meanwhile, blood pressure was checked -- which was below normal level (because of the lack of food in my system).

Around 6 PM, a cannula was inserted into the right hand for series of injections and drips that were going to be passed onto the body. A drip was given, soon afterwards, albeit flowed slowly but seemed to provide energy.

As soon as the clock struck 7 PM, I was taken into the Operation Theater. A spinal anesthesia was given which made my lower body senseless but I was pretty much awake in the upper body. The surgery began and was pretty much painless throughout, however, I did feel some pain in the left kidney while the Surgeon was doing his business. The drip flow was increased as soon as the surgery started and liquid bottle was empty within 30 minutes.

Because of the nature of congenital hernia (or the surgeon's expertise) - I was out of the Operation Theater in about roughly 60 minutes. My lower body was pretty numb and remained so for the next couple of hours.

Around 10 PM, when the anesthesia wore off, I started to feel excruciating pain and it increasingly became unbearable with each passing minute. I was given three to four injections from the cannula to calm down the pain for the night. The injections made the pain bearable and soon afterwards, I was given another drip for the night to keep the body energized. The doctor advised not to eat anything until 6 AM in the morning.

March 23, 2014

A little lower body movement resulted in increased pain even laughing intensified the pain. So, I soon realized less speaking the better. The pain was manageable till 1 AM and started to increase slowly. I was not able to get a good sleep and was getting uncomfortable with lack of motion and increase in pain.

When the clock struck 3 AM, the pain became unbearable and I asked the nurse for pain relieving injections. She was only authorized to give one injection and injected it directly into the drip which still had a slow flow. The pain did not recede and needed a doctor's intervention for calm it down.

Around 6 AM, I called for a doctor, who after assessing the situation, gave me four injections (three went in through the cannula) and one directly into the shoulder. The flow of drip was increased as well and the bottle emptied in 15 minutes. The pain decreased considerably and I was ready to have my first walk after the surgery. The getting up part from the bed, with assistance, was intense, after painful couple of minutes, I was on my legs and started to take little steps. I took this opportunity and went to the wash-room as well - all went well there. :)

After taking a little more steps, I slept till 9 AM. When I woke up, I was feeling a lot better. The pain was there but it was manageable. The doctor came around 10 AM and advised to start taking liquid - which I obliged by taking juice instantly. Afterwards, I slept till 1 PM. When, I woke up, I got up from the bed, this time myself, and took little steps and went to the washroom as well. I walked a little more, with assistance, sat down on a chair, took more juice and went to bed - when the pain started to increase.

At 2 PM, I was given the regular dose of injections to control the pain. Soon afterwards, I went to sleep and woke up at 4 PM. I took some green tea, which felt refreshing and stayed on the bed to keep the pain minimal. Around 9 PM, I got up from the bed, with some assistance, and went to wash-room. I had first bowel movement and thankfully it was without any pain. At 10 PM, I had simple liquid soup as dinner. A routine dose of four injections were given and I slept around 11 PM.

March 24, 2014

I woke up at 3 AM, the pain was manageable, and went to wash-room without any assistance, thankfully, all went fine there. Afterwards, I sat on a chair for couple of minutes and then went to bed again. The sleep was peaceful and woke up feeling more healthy around 7 AM. I took juice as breakfast and did a little walk around my room as well. Routine dose of injections was given at 10 AM and doctor was ready to have me discharged. The cannula was removed and I was advised to remain on liquids till next routine doctor check-up scheduled for March 27, 2014 for bandage change.

I reached home around 1 PM - the day went pretty uncomfortable. I was given pain killers and infection related tablets to keep everything in check.  

Friday, June 14, 2013

Plugged In, Not Charging - Solution

I have seen this error message a lot in laptops of all brands and sizes.

More than often the problem is with the battery related drivers than the hardware itself.

Here is the solution that works absolutely 100% of the times:

  1. Right click on 'My Computer'
  2. Go to 'Properties'
  3. Click 'Device Manager'
  4. Click the '+' sign on the 'Batteries'
  5. Delete all instances of 'Microsoft ACPI-Compliant Control Method Battery'
  6. Restart the laptop
  7. Log-in
  8. The status of battery now would be 'plugged in, charging'!  

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Learning - The Learning Ability

The learned is not the one who has learned a lot but actually the one who has learnt the ability to learn, unlearn and learn back again. How do you gain such an ability? Is it god-gifted or can you actually learn it starting fresh and ultimately become an expert?

I know more than few people who are prodigiously good at what they can do and that too without any formal education. These few people are either brilliant researchers or have such an amazing mind that they are able to grasp the complex of concepts within a blink of an eye.

We all think -- but most never analyse our thinking process. Why do we assume, perceive, take, mind, view and even idealise things as we do? Yes culture, peers, society, knowledge and education plays its part but in the end all this adds into our own thinking and we come to a certain liking, disliking, opinion and conclusion.

Let's take an example of one of my friends. She would shop or eat from a place where everyone is shopping or eating. The sole reason being, masses cannot be wrong. When this friend buys an eatable from some not so famous place -- she would start complaining about the taste, quality, quantity etc.

We are learning constantly amazingly even when we are taking a nap. It is nearly impossible not to learn even if you are trying not to learn. Learning is easy -- but unlearning what we have already learnt and learning a totally new concept over it is pretty hard.

If we can unlearn our notions and develop new notions over them then we can be classified as learned in real sense. How can you achieve such learning ability? It is not simple but you can try by being open-minded, ready to challenge your norms, accept being wrong, ready to being corrected, ask others for help and lastly but more importantly never becoming an expert. 

Friday, January 11, 2013

Or Something Similar

There comes a time in your daily routine life -- when whatever you do ends up being a mistake or something similar. You become frustrated and want to scream and cry out loud or something similar. What should you do when everything you touch becomes dust and evaporates in thin air or something similar, you get the idea. Right?

Life's full of curvy ups and downs. The thrills, twists, turns and climaxes depend mostly on your instant reactions and counter actions or something similar. The spoken word and the sped arrow or something similar like spent time cannot return but the after-thought feeling actually does to haunt and taunt. In matters of mere seconds you lose it if you do not control it -- your temper, temptations, anger or similar wave of emotions.

Yes, controlling your self is the hardest task to perform and executing it perfectly is near to impossible or something similar. Day-in and day-out you have to sweat like a champion sports-person to control your own self. The self that can instantly destruct like a nuclear bomb ready to shred everything into pieces that comes in its way. There are commonly two results of your actions. Either you win or you lose. Let me tell you the hidden third result which would make you a master of your self. An action that results in a win-win situation. Yes, neither you nor anyone else loses -- try it or something similar and see for your self.  

Words Will Not Rhyme

Up this time and thinking about
Time lost with a furious clout

A human can err, so what?
Angels cannot, so bait!

Nothing is over and out till
You believe in miracles still

You live in matter of seconds
The moment that fast descends

Let's face it with vigour
Destinies that keep rigour

Waiting for that exact time
When words will not rhyme

See you soon in cloud nine
Always you were, are mine!