Ran across a really cool product today that I have personally been wishing into existence for years.  Being a person that had spent time in the trenches managing security policies across hundreds of Cisco devices; I had always thought it was so much more complex than it had to be.  It turns out that I was right.  Cisco has a new product out called Cisco Defense Orchestrator. 

Cisco Defense Orchestrator is a cloud based security policy management tool that can manage all of your Cisco devices across the globe.  Incredible.

Here's a brief listing of the benefits of the product:

  • Single Pane of Glass Management - All rolled into a single Web Based SAS Application
  • Consistent Security Policies - Create Security Templates, roll them out with a few clicks
  • Simple Provisioning - Easy Deployments via Template driven rollouts
  • Cloud Based - Incredibly fast deployment and Time to Value
  • More Time - Doing an impact analysis is a breeze and no longer a painstakingly involved process.

Quick link : http://www.cisco.com/go/cdo


I'm a big fan of LastPass.  After the thorough methodology review by Steve Gibson at GRC, LastPass is a great option for password management.  They recently had a blog post with an interesting infographic. 


Here it is: 

Just posting this here, as the information wasn't really readily available when I did this.  Most of the newer and popular Joomla extensions require PHP 5.4 or better.  Since 5.4 is a dead branch, updates wise, I moved to 5.6.


Steps (Use sudo only if required)

1) Remove OLD Apache

sudo service httpd stop
sudo yum erase httpd httpd-tools apr apr-util

2) Remove OLD PHP

sudo yum remove php-*

3) Install PHP 5.6 (Apache 2.4 will be automatically installed with this)

sudo yum install php56

4) Make sure all the required PHP extensions are installed

yum list installed | grep php

5) If not then install them using

sudo yum install php56-xml php56-xmlrpc php56-soap php56-gd

6) To list the other available php extensions

yum search php56

7) PHP 5.6 MySQL extension (Assume you have already installed MySQL)

sudo yum install php56-mysqlnd 

(NOTE: it is not php56-mysql)

8) Start / Restart Apache

sudo service httpd start
sudo service httpd restart

9) Check the version

php -v
httpd -v

You have all of this file data.  It's important to your family, or your business.  How do you protect it?  Traditionally, you would go out and purchase an onsite NAS or some other type of hardware that would be on your network.  That's great.  You now have two copies of your data.  But what happens if there is a fire?  What happens if you have a break in, and your laptops and NAS are all stolen?  How do you get that data back?

With the rise of cheap and secure cloud based storage, especially Cloud Storage via Amazon S3, getting that data offsite may be easier than you think.  From a family standpoint, most of your standard NAS services include a vaulting to S3 or Glacier software package.  If not, you can utilize the web interface or API for driving your data to S3 or Glacier.


Amazon also has their Virtual Storage Gateway software appliance.  The usage cost of $125/mo may be a bit high for a family, but could be perfect for a small to medium sized business.  There are also other methods of getting data into s3 via the AWS API's and the robust AWS CLI application.  I will do future posts on those options.


Here's an architectural layout on how the Storage Gateway VM works.