Sunday, October 30, 2005

Love Story 1 : The Wood in the Island

It was a beautiful was blue, waves were catching up with one another, as if they are kids running around..innocently playing in the vast sea. It was 5 years ago where in the same sand i sitted, the same rock i held and the same beautiful day that i shared my most unforgettable moments with my bestfriend.....

I was lost and lonely. I cried for so many nights asking myself, why and how. The desperation and dismay i felt against the many things that has happened to me were choking me. Rex was again with his friends, Stella was asking for her school allowance and my parents were sick and i cant even afford to buy even a cheap vitamins for them. There were so many of them around me, but i felt i was so alone and isolated. Sometimes, i woke up in the middle of the night, crying without a reason. I cried for hours and silently screaming the pain i felt deep inside. I want to held my breath and drowned myself with my tears until such time i will feel no more pain and emptiness.

Then one time, I was asked by my boss to visit a certain island, to take pictures for our travel agency. The island was beautiful indeed. The scenery brought me inner comfort for brief moment that i was away from the city...away from my family and Rex. Then, for the silly of me, I thought of putting a wood beside me while I sat down in the sand. Then holding the wood, as if it was a human being, I make sure no one is looking and began to talk about my problems, my family and my dreams. I barely notice that a man was actually beside me, listening to my blabbering. To my surprised and embarassment, i quickly stood up and angrily ask him. "Who are you and why are you here?". Mam, actually i was here before you came. he smiled and pointed his finger to the tree beside me. " I was there up in the tree, i like to sit there and spend my time watching the horizon until it dawns.Do you like sunset mam?" "Amely is my name Mr...." Karry, im Karry. By the way Amely,can i ask you a question? I nodded. " Did the wood answered you back while your talking to him?" he smiled. I laughed hard, and for the first time i was laughing...we talked the whole afternoon until the sun sets and I have to go back to my hotel. He waved goodbye and said. " Amely, good night and see you tomorrow". I did my task, taking pictures in the morning and going back to that tree near the sea every afternoon spending my time talking and laughing with Karry.

And for the first time in my life, I felt i was not alone...that i have a bestfriend...when in fact we just meet few days ago. I felt so comfortable and at ease when im with him. He makes me laugh with all his corny jokes, and makes me smile with his slapsticks. One time, he stands up in front of me and sing his heart out to the tune of Love moves in Mysterious way. It was a high note song but he sang it well than a woman. It was my last night in the island. For the days i stayed in the island, i felt i have found a bestfriend that i have been looking all my life. Hey Amely, i have a gift for you and i will give it tomorrow. Keep it so youll be reminded of me always." as he giggled like a child. I smiled too, but i felt heavy as i looked at him." Well see each other again Karry, ill visit you again".

I was packing my things and i am ready to go. Then i thought of visiting my bestfriend again and perhaps ask him to come with me for a vacation. Then i can tour him to our City and we can talk longer. I can ask Ray to accomodate him temporarily in his boarding house. I was excited to the mere thought of it.. i was running to the tree and calling him..Karry! where are you?. No one anwered instead a little girl was sitting there and crying. I asked here. "Hello, why are you crying?" The girl looked at me and said. " Your Amely, are you? my brother talks about you always at home. I held her. " Your Karry's sister, how are you? where is he?. She looked at me again and cried." He just died last night of heart attack". I cant move. " Your kidding right?. My brother has a rheumatic heart, he takes a rest during the day climbing up that tree and watching the horizon until sunsets. I was speechless, as all the tears came flowing from my eyes. I have found a bestfriend...and i lost him. Then the girl held me and said. " by the way, before he died he gave this to me. It has a name engrave on it". It was a small wooden bust of a man with an engraved letters " to my bestfriend". A small note was attached to it. And it reads "this is made from the wood you have talked to for hours, i will miss you".

Hardware Review 1: Zyxel Prestige 660R DSL Modem

Zyxel DSL Modem has a quite a good form, which can be a factor in marketing appearance. Its blue and sturdy look provides a feeling of reliability and high performance to clients connected to DSL services. It has the same basic stuff inside (NAT,Port Forwarding, SPI, Access List, Routing, Bridge, etc). However i was interested on one feature which is the IP Alias. IP Alias is the capability of one modem to share 1 public IP to 3 different network. Which means, that i can connect 3 VLAN's or different LAN to internet access and denied others without the need to put in a router or a layer 3 switch. For example, I have 3 VLAN's for each department which is Engineering, IT and Customer Service. The reason for the VLAN is to separate each department' network, to improve security and access to dedicated servers. However, i need to connect Engineering and IT to Internet but still maintain their VLAN ID. With IP alias, we can just easily connect the two VLAN without the need to change their IP or disable their VLAN assignment. It's a simple feature but helpful, especially when IT budget is limited.

Other feature also is the address to address mapping. Which means you can map several public IP to different Private IP. For example, you have 3 servers in the data center. A VoIP server, Application server and a File Server. You need to separate each access, so you assign each with public IP. However, your concern with security, so you need to assigned it with a Private IP, while doing NAT to mask your LAN IP's. Others may opt to do routing, but with this modem, you can keep the NAT and still come up with the same objective.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Freeware Review 2: Traffic Emulator

Are you trying to measure the reliability of a server, router, firewall or any access point? Well check this freeware! You can simulate a heavy traffic client-server activity and stress test your equipment. By setting the number of source IP address which will generate the traffic, the number of packets they will send, the type of protocol (TCP,UDP,ICMP,Others) and the destination IP of your equipment,your ready now for some major loadin'& killin' stress test. Download it HERE dude! See more of the freeware i used to troubleshoot network problems on my next posts.

Freeware Review 1: Qcheck performance test

I was assigned to do the performance test for Motorola Canopy Access Points and Subscriber module. With the absence of a reliable tool, i have to search for some software in which i can do comparison. Basically, i need the response times, throughput and streaming test. Then i stumble upon these freeware from IXIA, which is very useful for a basic network test.You can select what protocol to use (TCP,UDP,IPX,SPX) and set the data size for response and throughput test. You can also do streaming test with UDP or IPX protocol at different data rates. You may want to check it it out HERE.

Sunday, October 09, 2005

VoIP for all! long distance no more?

VoIP or Voice over IP has been recently a hot topic in the news lately when NTC released its official stand about it. Read it here. Classifying VoIP as a value added services has sent a wide grin on the faces of companies who despised long distance charges. However, telcos were not quite amused by it, considering that every ISP in the country can host voice services to compete with the "giants" in the telecommunication industry. Imagine this, a 20 year old IT whiz geek who pride himself on his expertise in configuring a VoIP server using a high end PC clone, will just need to have 3 to 5 trunk lines and a high speed bandwidth internet connection then viola! a full operational Voice services for US pinoys who would like to call their CDO relatives at a lower cost. All they have to do is connect to the VoIP server through the Internet, register, subscribe, send their payment through Western Union and they can call Cagayan de Oro. Then guess what happen to the kid....well he become rich.

Now how in a hell can we do that? I have seen solutions from popular brands. We have Avaya, Cisco, 3com, Huawei and etc. who have sell complete solutions on VoIP. But how about for those offices that needs to connect to VoIP and doesnt have enough money to invest on 10 thousand dollars worth of machine? Consider a company with 3 offices in Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. Manila needs to call their sub offices everyday for reports and stuffs. And these suboffices needs to call their Main Office and other suppliers in Manila everyday too. From the sound of it, you think of thousands of dollars in equipment alone. However, what if we can make an alternative solution which is much lower and cheaper but the same functionality. 1000 dollars high end PC to be used as a VoIP server, 100 dollars FXO gateway, 2 units of 70 dollars FXS gateway and snacks, professional charges at 1000 dollars maybe or less...then you got your system. All in all we have 2,240 dollars for an initial invetsment on a full operational VoIP system.

The secret of this cheap alternative solution will be on the VoIP server which basically was a Linux Open Source PBX technology. For those who are interested or who are looking for an expert on this, our group can certainly help you in so many ways. Please email me, or for details and inquiries.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

What makes Linux so popular among IT geeks?

With the recent operation crackdown on pirated copies of Microsoft, several establishments have opted to use Linux based operating systems. Of course, there were so many complaints from users, especially those who were more familiar with windows. I came to visit a popular Linux group forum, KLUG and i noticed that some of its users really hates windows OS or sounds like they hate it..or im not sure if its just a show off. Now the question, why is it that if we talk about linux, we associate it with IT experts, geeks, hackers and computer whiz people. Sometimes, the qoute "I know Linux" is another term for "I am an IT expert". Well, each operating system has its own features and vulnerabilities. Some may choose one from another, it really depends upon ones expertise and strategy in managing its own network. Some may prefer Windows because its friendly, easy and has a strong tech support. Or others may prefer Linux, because it is open source, free, reliable and has less vulnerabilities. But in my opinion, there are reasons why IT geeks prefer to show to all thay they prefer Linux.
Aside from its technical features, psychologically these are also be partly their reasons.
1. Linux is unfriendly to a user who has limited IT knowledge. Which means that MAJORITY of us doesnt understand it. So if you understand it, and knows how to use it, then you can be consider as the FEW WHIZ out there. Sometimes beng with the few, is what makes us feel special and extraordinary.
2. Linux is more of a CLI instead of GUI, which makes it unpopular to ordinary users.
3. Linux is open source, which makes it basically free to download and to use. So if you are a linux expert, then "free from licensing" is your war banner to all companies out there.

Others may argue that Linux is better, or Windows is still the best, i think its just the same. Those software were developed to make our work much easier, effecient and productive. Expertise depends upon the features you need to squeeze out from an OS. All i can say, why windows is much popular, it is because they have the most brilliant minds in marketing. They can mask and hide the vulnerabilities of their product through features available. But in fairness. Windows has some features in which are really good and easy to manage.

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Why Cagayan de Oro is the Best?

I was going to my work when i boarded a Patag liner in the corner of City Hall just near the Lourdes College. I was looking and enjoying the beauty of the two floating restaurants in the Carmen River, as the jeep was crossing the bridge. Then i realized that the beauty and grandeur of a city will really depends upon the people that lives in it. Cagayan de Oro is known as the City of Golden Friendship, and we have proven and affirmed it to all visitors that came to the city. I worked for 2 years in Davao City and i can really see the difference of the people there from ours. Dabawenyo in majority were more of a socialite and arrogant. Although i do have down to earth and kind friends in Davao. You've got to be "in" to be acknowledged. In fact, if you want to be respected in a mall or any office, you have to speak Tagalog, even if it sounds so Bisaya. Have been in Cebu City for 8 months for my board exam review once. In Cebu, you beware of sweet smile and good intentions shown to you by strangers. It may be a snatcher, modus operandi or a rapist waiting to capture you. Never wear a jewelry when youre in the city nor display your new cellphone, i tell you that is dangerous in a city like Cebu. Im not really biased, since i have been to several provinces and cities in my previous work, but there is no City as warmth and friendly as Cagayan de Oro. You might ask why? I can give you a few reasons:
1. In Cagayan, we do not imitate other Cities and pretend to be high class by speaking languages which is not ours. We speak Bisaya at our own unique intonation and speak tagalog only to those people who do not understand our Bisaya.
2. In Cagayan, people smile a lot because were happy and beautiful (applause cagayan!)
3. In Cagayan, streets were safe even in the wee hours of the evening because we have huge post lamps that illuminates every street in the city. And we have police who are vigilant and a mayor who cares about us (is it election already?hehe)
4. In Cagayan, we have large and shiny with all the lights accessories JEEPNEYS! (try to check Cebu and Davao)
5. In Cagayan, TAXI are Toyota Corolla, Nissan Sentra, Vios, etc. Complete with aircon and stereo sounds. (check Davao dude!)
6. In Cagayan, we have Night Cafe, where people whether rich or poor, socialite or not meet, drink and dine every Friday and Saturday of the week. People in CDO are one, we dont biased people based on their status or language.
7. In Cagayan, people loves to sing and are good singers. We have Mark Bautista and Aegis to prove that. We have videokes everywhere.
8. In Cagayan, we have the cleanest and beautiful markets. Check our Carmen and Cogon Market and you will probably say, "hey thats not a market, its a superstore!"
9. In Cagayan, we are the city with the most number of Telcos. We have Philcom,Sotelco, Cruztelco,Italtel, Misortel, Bayantel and Globe. See how high tech we are? but Philcom is the most popular of them all here (Go Philcom!)
10. And most of all, ONLY IN CAGAYAN you will find the best tourist spots. So biyahe na! WOW CAGAYAN TA BAI!

There so many things to say about Cagayan but i think one good reason why i love this City is because i was born here and i live here. There is no place like home i guess.