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Nifty 19th annual Open House and Customer Appreciation day!
Posted by Rubin Bennett on 06 September 2016 03:57 PM



Open House Flyer

It's that time of year again, we hope we'll see you here at the nerd-plex!

September 14th, 2016 from 1:00PM - 4:00PM!

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Happy Sysadmin day (July 29th)!
Posted by Rubin Bennett on 29 July 2016 10:29 AM

Obligatory IT Crowd referenceThis day 17 years ago was deemed to be the first annual System Administrator Appreciation day!

We have an amazing team of engineers here who do their absolute best every day to ensure that your systems and networks are running smoothly and just get the heck out of the way so you all can do what you do.  I know that I'm unbelievably appreciative of our team and the work they do.

One of the paradoxes of I.T. work is that when everything is running smoothly, our customers wonder what we do all day.  And perversely, when things go wrong our customers wonder... what we do all day.

So today we'll peel back the veil of secrecy around I.T. and admit that several years ago we actually programmed robots to do our work, and most days we sit around the office eating pizza and drinking beer, with the occasional coffee or Frisbee break in the hangar (can't be outside too much or people will catch on!).

If only...

The reality is that our jobs are interesting, demanding, and occasionally deeply frustrating.  We manage ever more complex systems and networks, and our users have more and more complex requirements from a technological perspective.  We spend enormous effort on staying current on our skills, anticipating what's coming, and ensuring that we're consistently delivering the absolute best quality support and customer service that we possibly can.  And while we're human and by definition imperfect, we do a pretty darn good job overall.

So, as a team of nerds and sysadmins, we demand cake.  And Ice Cream.  And gifts, and words of gratitude. But mostly gifts.


Further reading if you're so inclined (No links to Amazon wishlists, we promise!)

Lastly, the photo above is a screenshot from the BBC sitcom 'The IT Crowd', which is required watching if you have any contact with nerds:


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Trouble with Microsoft update KB3161608 for Windows 7 and Server 2008
Posted by Rubin Bennett on 27 June 2016 09:57 AM

Hi folks

We've had a handful of reports of issues with a recent patch (released last week).  It's a Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 "optional" rollup that includes among other things a fix for the Poodle vulnerability. It's causing issues with Outlook when used with certain mail server software and has also caused issues with credit card processing software.  Removing a patch for a known vulnerability is usually a Bad Idea and we tend to be very reluctant to do it.  However, there have been a handful of sites where the business impact of the update created a critical stoppage, and removing the update was warranted as a temporary fix as we work with outside vendors to update their TLS and SSL handling routines.

If you're experiencing issues like the ones described above, please contact the team.  If you're under our Perception managed services program, we can automatically remove and decline that patch from all of your systems in a matter of minutes, and functionality will be restored.

If you have any questions, please get in touch!
Rubin & the rbTech team



Technet KB article describing the update:

Microsoft support forums thread about the issues:

Issues with vSphere inventory service:


Further reading:

Poodle vulnerability CERT posting:

Google results about Poodle:

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"Locky" Virus making the rounds
Posted by Rubin Bennett on 18 March 2016 10:01 AM

It's a new year, and there's a new virus that's making the rounds.

If you receive email, often purporting to be from yourself or someone within your company, that contain invoices as either attachments (usually .zip files) or links to a dropbox URL, be very suspicious. The 'Locky' virus is an relatively new variant of the Cryptolocker, and it encrypts your data using non-reversible ciphers. It encrypts local data and also data that you have shortcuts to on shared folders on the network. Once the files are encrypted, the only recourse is to restore them from a backup once the infected computer is cleaned up.

We're seeing a significant uptick in the number of infections, and awareness is  the most important way to prevent yourself from becoming the next victim. Infections are easy to prevent by using proper email etiquette and being cautious about any messages you receive that contain .zip files or links to websites.

If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, please don't hesitate to contact
your tech team here at the office!Thanks as always for making rbTech your trusted I.T. provider!


The rbTech team
rbTechnologies, LLC


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rbTech in print this month!
Posted by Rubin Bennett on 11 January 2016 03:25 PM

We're all very thankful for the amazing writeup in this month's Business People Vermont magazine, with our own Rubin Bennett on the cover!

Business People Cover

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Some of you may have seen the hair tearing announcements over the weekend or late last week about the 'most epic vulnerability' in Linux, ever (

While we fully understand the seriousness of the vulnerability (after all, pretty much anyone can hit backspace 28 times, which is the trigger for the bug), we also work hard to balance the risk of a vulnerability with the real world implications.  In order to exploit the vulnerability, an attacker must have physical access to a Linux server, at the console.  For physical servers this means being at the console.  For virtual machines, that means taking control of the host before you can access the console.  What this vulnerability really does is serve as a reminder, again, that physical security is important.  We've said it before, and we'll say it again:  If an attacker has physical access to your servers, all bets are off.  It doesn't take a talented attacker to boot your system up from a USB drive and have their way with it.

All that said, be asured that we'll be in touch soon to apply updates to your vulnerable systems!  As always please let us know if you have questions, comments, or concerns!

The rbTech team


P.S.:  To put this particular vulnerability into perspective, if you have console access to a Linux system with the Grub or LILO (old) bootloader, you can simply boot it with the 'single' command appended to the boot string, and the system will boot into single user mode and drop you to a root prompt.  In rare instances, single user mode will prompt you for a password, but on many if not most systems that setting is not configured.  Which is to say that the new security issue is not that much worse than the existing state of things as they've been by design and default for years and years.

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