Welcome 2008, Goodbye 2007

A new year is beginning, and I am ending this year with very bad moments. I’ve been sick since last Thursday and even now while writing this post I am still suffering from the remnants of the viral fever.

I feel like a water fountain because since yesterday morning I have been sweating profusely even when I am inside an air-conditioned room. I have been feeling nauseosus most of the time, my body feels like I have been run over by a locomotive, my head feels like a melon which has been smashed again and again in an outdoor party.

This fever is certainly the worst since I can remember. Ponstan is my good friend.

Maybe I have been working too hard? I just hope that the fever will be gone 100% before I start my 7AM shift on Monday! 🙁

Local Ponzi Schemes Sprouting Everywhere

I don’t know about you but since several past weeks I have been receiving emails that claims to make you rich. Almost everyday, yeah. The unique thing about these emails are that they are in Malay, and originating from Malaysia and Singapore.

So far I can easily classify these emails into a few categories:

  • Mobile Wallet – pay as low as RM100 to them, activate your account via SMS and you can sell mobile products such as prepaid reloads. How can you be sure that they will not just take your RM100 and flee?
  • Easy Funds – pay some money, refer friends, and be paid. Ponzi!!!
  • Money pools – participate in a money pool. Pay about RM52 and be in the run for the jackpot of RM60,000+
  • Email Referrals – refer people via email and get paid.
  • Classic Ponzi or Matrix System – nothing special about this one. Everyone knows how a pyramid or matrix system will end.

Almost all of these emails claimed that you can be a millionaire in a couple of months if you join them. Are you kidding me?

One word of advice, it is better if you keep your money for something useful or invest it in a Government certified fund.

I know the Malaysian Securities Commission has been actively blocking many foreign sites for offering fraudulent investment programs, but I wonder how are they going to handle these which are originating from the country itself. Despite of warnings issued by the Government the number of people who fell into these traps are still surprisingly high. And when they realize what actually has happened they will blame the Government. Duh!…

Work Life Balance

I have recently discovered that I am having difficulties to separate work and life. I am always worried about work which is good for my employer, but very bad for my household.

Since I also have sleeping problems, having to work in a shift environment doesn’t make it any easier for me. That’s what has happened to me lately, and that is why there is as much as 20 days gap between posts in this blog. My biggest weakness in blogging is that I need a relaxed mind to write.

I need some good example from other fellow bloggers who have a dayjob, and can still manage to separate work, life, and blogging 🙂


IE7 and document.body.scrollTop

After being nagged by my Windows Automatic Updates for quite some time, I finally decided to give in and just install the IE7 update. I made a mistake by not backing up my IE6 files, or trying to find a method to have IE6 co-exist with IE7.

Anyway, I found that the document.body.scrollTop method to find out how much of the page has been scrolled down doesn’t work anymore. Now I have to use document.documentElement.scrollTop. And since the only difference of IE7 and IE6 is reflected inside a long string in the navigator.appVersion or navigator.appName objects, a little Regular Expression has to be built.

Here is the snip I ended up with, to cater both IE6 and IE7:

  case 'Microsoft Internet Explorer':
    var myregex = /MSIE 7\.0/i;
    var myArray = navigator.appVersion.match(myregex);
    if(myArray.length > 0) scrollY = document.documentElement.scrollTop;
    else scrollY = document.body.scrollTop;
    scrollY = window.pageYOffset;

Anyone found a better solution?

TMNet Decides to Block Port 25

If you’re a Streamyx subscriber and is actively monitoring your Streamyx email you would already be aware that TM is blocking all outgoing connections to port 25 from the dynamic IP users. Simply put, home users with dynamic IP will not be able to use their email clients (i.e. Thunderbird, Outlook, Eudora, Kmail) to send emails via their own mail server.

For example, as a Yahoo! Mail Plus user I use Yahoo! SMTP at smtp.mail.yahoo.com to send my emails. With the blocking enforced, I will no longer be able to send via this server. The same goes to other users who have their own mail server for their own domains. As of the time of writing this email, I see that the blocking is still not enforced:

SMTP Blocking on TMNET

My Thunderbird and sendmail on my Linux box are still happily sending out emails via my SMTP servers / smart hosts.

Here’s the official announcement: MITIGATING SPAM IN TM NETWORK.

They are doing this to prevent spammers from sending emails from dynamic IP addresses. However they do open up an SMTP proxy as an open relay for dynamic IP users. I am unsure and pretty much would like to see the effect of having an open relay in their network.

One particular thing that is bad for everyone is that the final destination will check for IP addresses as they mentioned. But how are they going to make sure that the IP address of the smtp proxy (smtp-proxy.tm.net.my will not be blacklisted?

Certain anti-spam implementations such as SPF does check whether the email is sent from authorized mail servers (technical: MX records), and sending from TMNET’s SMTP relay will make sure that your email will fail the SPF test. Adding it in the SPF authorized list (technical: “v=spf1 a:smtp-proxy.tm.net.my mx:smtp.yourdomain.com”) is an initial idea – but doing this will allow everyone to be “authorized” as one of your domain users 🙁

And of course, you can forget about DomainKeys as the smtp-proxy will break your signature.

As for me, as long as they don’t block port 465 (SMTP over SSL) I will still be happy.

Oh yes by the way this policy is not only used by TMNET. Last week, one of my users who were in a London hotel had the same problem when he tried to connect to port 25 (a mail server in Malta). In the end we added another listening port and it worked fine. If you own a mail server, consider doing the same thing!

So far, how does this policy effect you?

GMail Labels Now With Color

This morning when I logged on to GMail, it was still the same.

However about half an hour ago I was surprised with some weird boxes around the label list. Clicking on them gave me the option to do only one thing: change the colors of my labels. Yay!

As an email organizing freak, I really welcome this feature as it makes my life easier by letting me spot my emails quickly.

Gmail Labels with Color

Have you logged into GMail today?