Hex and Binary

I intend to build up this guide into a series of more complex “lessons” so eventually we can read packets as they are on the wire and you will be able to interpret what you are seeing without too much difficulty.

Time to start with the basics.  In order to understand and read packets, we need to know the fundamentals.  How do computers and network communicate?  Essentially by binary and hexadecimal.  This is a series of zero’s and one’s and the numbers 0 to 9 with the letters A to F.

When I was taught this in school, some 20ish years ago, I honestly found it a bit complicated, but looking back it was only complicated due to the way it was taught.  Hopefully this methodolgy is simple for you to understand.

Counting in binary is not too difficult, the values can only be a 0 or a 1, an off or on value.  However what the off or on values represent is the important ‘bit’.

You essentially have 8 bits in a byte and this makes binary reasonably straight forward, for counting I find it best to create a quick table, this allows me to visually count, rarther than attempting to work out everything in my head.

binaryhexchart Continue reading “Hex and Binary”

Individual Goals

These past few weeks or so I’ve been taking a long hard look at myself and what I have accomplished and achieved so far.  I’ve come to the conclusion, that even though I would consider myself reasonably happy in where I am at (professionally), I could be doing so much  more.

I enjoy the career path I chose to follow, and I would say that I am pretty good at it, simply because of the very fact that I enjoy it and see it as more than just a job that pays with bills, however with that said I do not believe I have done as much as I could and should be doing to help myself.  Whereas up until this point I thought I was doing a good job in that area, I came to the conclusion that I can be doing so much more, and this is only going to exponentially increase my knowledge and growth rate, if I follow a few simple steps!

Step one is to read, read a lot of books.  So I am going to make the effort to read a hell of a lot more books, the last week alone I have read 3 books, well 2 and a half, still reading the 3rd.

Spamnation by Brian Krebs – This was a good read and very interesting, about spam emails that we all receive and hate, what I really enjoyed about it, is the fact that I can relate and recall seeing all those damn emails in my inbox, as I still have my old ntlworld email address, which is around 15 years old and receives a crazy amount of spam still!

The Dark Net byJamie Bartlett – I started off the first several chapters and was enjoying this book, however the last half of the book was not about the dark net at all, it covered area’s with how people make money from cam websites and the like, not really interesting and a bit misleading, however over all a decent read.

We are Anonymous by Parmy Olson – I am several chapters into this book and I’m really enjoying it so far, a good bit of insight into the Anonymous group, how they started and what they stand up for.

I’m now at the point where I am making a far greater effort to educate myself and have fun doing it, I have grand plans for myself in the immediate future, it currently feels that I do not have enough time to implement these changes in my life, I just know I will get there, and turn this site into something which will hopefully be beneficial to others!

In with the New

A site revival…Again.

So over the years I’ve had this domain name and have used it as some type of blog, with no real structure or thought as to what I am using it for.  However one it has been, and that is beneficial, I’ve helped myself and others at some point with posts or updates to issues and bugs that I have come across.

So I’m going to carry that on, but now in a slightly different direction, in the wonderful and ever changing world of Security.

I’m currently studying for the SANS 503 GCIA and SANS 401  GSEC certifications, and will be taking the 503 exam early next year, part of this blog will help me reinforce my knowledge, as I have discovered that we can generally understand things reasonably well in our head / mind, however when you have to explain or talk about what we believe we understand to others, we soon realise, that we do not know the subject as much as we thought!

Anyhow, I’ve made myself get this update out there, and will be making changes / adding more content going forward and hopefully this will be of some use to others as time goes by.  It’s 5:30am and I have not slept yet…my sleep pattern is currently messed up, no fun!