Page 1

The Scene



3. Warez and malware

Identify and eliminate false positives.

15. Spotlight on Ubuntu

Even your Grandma can use this.

18. Apple TV

Apple’s new conquest.

20. Securing Your Mac How safe is your Mac?

25. Corel VideoStudio X2 Pro Review

Does it hold up against other leading video editors?


27. This Holiday’s Hottest Games Have you played them all?

31. Fable 2 Review Let the tale unfold.

32. Star Control review An opensource classic.


33. Works of Hunter S. Thompson A Maverick’s history.

34. Religulous Review

Documentary on religion.

36. The Beauty that is Friendship

An emotive poem on the power of frienship. THESCENE  /  WAREZ-BB.ORG

1  Contents

The Scene


Editor Enigma86 Co-Editor Yoghurt Writer’s Team Leader Dark Elite Artist’s Team Leader chicodelperreo Proofreader’s Team Leader Daniel.Blaze Magazine Team Compiler chicodelperreo Writer’s Team Assistant Nvidia Shifty

Hey everybody, Welcome to yet another issue of the SCENE. In this holiday special issue, we have taken utmost care to ensure that we present the most informative, beneficial and entertaining content, which we can provide on a free magazine. In the next few pages of the SCENE, you’ll find wide coverage of multiple technologies, news from the gaming arena, reviews and humorous content. All said, following is a list of events that have occurred over the past few months.

Writers Dramamine tomb08uk kartnite LinuxTrance turtledude23

Members would have noticed that the magazine server was unavailable for several days. We fear that our faithful magazine sever cannot be used anymore. Hence, we will be shifting to a new server. Until the relocation process is complete, the old magazine archives will not available. Please note that we are trying to restore all our services to operational status as quickly as possible. We regret any inconvenience caused by the downtime.

Artists somebody-else labonova oddbrawl Adrys Redflow xxpaigexx

On a festive note, the magazine team will be celebrating our holidays this December. We hope to meet you all with a new issue of the SCENE after the holiday season. On behalf of the Press Team, I wish all readers a happy holiday season! Regards, Enigma86

Quality Assurance Team Clarinda Silly-Billy NeonBox .Hancock Snow.Flake Spoonz Twist Yawn Cover Design labonova

2  Editorial


Warez and malware Identify and eliminate false positives Motivation:

A large number of personal security products are available to people. However, each software uses different rules to classify a file as dangerous and safe. Hence, the definition of a dangerous file has become blurred and largely remains mysterious. People discard legitimate useful tools(false positive) and trust dangerous tools(false negative) based only on reports from their security software. This article will enable you to identify malware in warez and help safeguard your valuable data. You will see how to use dependable techniques to identify nature of files you download by using easily accessible freeware desktop and web solutions. You will also gain a clear idea about the properties and capabilities of malware.

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Required Tools Uniextract


CFF Explorer


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Understanding attacker’s perspective

It is useful to know the general strategy of attackers, before you analyze infections attached to software binaries created by them. The attacker commonly uses software called packers/binders to encapsulate and bind malware executable with legitimate software executables to create a single binary file. We will be calling this final executable an infected executable. Please understand these terms, since they will be used often in this article.

Layman Notes:

When an executable(file) is executed or when a file executes, it implies that the executable performs the instructions stored inside it. In case of malware, this instruction could be to steal password or to bug your machine. Remember that the executable is just a file. It could be a malware file, a software file or an infected file. Software - Useful application. Malware - Software, which harms your PC. Binder - A software, which combines software and malware to create the Infected executable. Malware + Software + Binder ==> Infected self extracting executable Dropper - The infected executable. It’s called a dropper since it drops the malware. Note that the malware component could be dropped on your PC by downloading it from the internet. Packed executable - Similar to dropper. It is named so because the original software was enveloped using a binder’s code. Binders could be treated as any code, which can combine multiple executables to create a single executable file. WinRAR can be considered a simple binder. You can select two executables on your harddrive and choose the add to archive option and select the Create SFX(self extracting) Archive option to generate a single executable, which contains both source executables inside it. However, on execution of the final winrar SFX executable, you are presented with a Graphical User Interface(GUI), which asks you to choose a location to extract the component files. Infected executables and Winrar SFX are not very different, except that the former can extract executables to either harddrive or memory and causes harm by executing malware executable code silently(malware will NOT have a GUI, for obvious reasons), avoiding antivirus detection of malware. The software usually has a GUI and its execution is visible. To the casual user, the software is successfully installed. 5  Technology


False positive alert:

Note that the binder is referred to as a software and not malware. The binder is harmless by itself and its purpose is to shroud malware; to evade detection by security softwares. Security products classify binders as benign and malicious binders based on how they have been used by people for a long time and their ability to analyze them. Hence, you may receive a threat alert (Trojan Dropper - The name is equivalent to our concept of infected executable in this article) report from an antivirus when a legitimate software is packed using a protector such as Armadillo or UPX. Armadillo,47370-order,1-page,1/description.html UPX The security product could fail to report a genuine infected executable threat, when malware and software are compressed together using WinRAR to produce a SFX. This is only because the security software trusts the SFX created using WinRAR, since it’s commonly used. Hence, infected executables may often arrive as innocuous WinRAR SFX packages. The goal is always to trick the user into executing the infected executable. When the infected executable is executed, the following activities occur. 1. The Binder code executes - This separates the software and the malware. 2. The Software code executes. 3. The malware code executes. This implies that both the malware executable and the genuine software’s executable are separated and maybe available to us at some point when we run the infected executable. Please remember this, as we will recall this fact later in the article. A malicious binder will package software and malware in a way which allows execution of malware code silently without triggering alerts from security softwares. Clever binders may separate malware and software in memory and hence are impossible to investigate. Example : Molebox packer.


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Important Note: Since binders can effectively shroud an executable file and enable its silent execution, it’s unnecessary to use both software and malware to create an infected executable, i.e. a binder can create an infected executable only using malware. Software is additionally used only to serve as a distraction.

Handling suspicious executables Static analysis phase In static analysis phase, we will try to identify the nature of executables, without actually executing them on our machines. 1. Download the file to a folder called “Binary Analysis” in your HDD. Extract the binary if the source download package is compressed using rar/zip etc. A separate folder makes analysis easier. 2. Right click on the malware binary and choose Properties. Identifying executable nature through digital signatures 3. If the application is from a renowned company or if the application is an anti-spyware/virus product, you should be able to see a digital signature tab. If the security product is not digitally signed, you shouldn’t be using it anyway. The digital signature often indicates a safe executable. Switch to Digital Signature tab and click on the Details button and to examine the validity of the certificate. Click on the view certificate button to check the information about the Certificate Authority who issued the certificate. Note that it is possible to self-sign executables with a fake digital signature, but this occurs rarely. Furthermore, if you have clicked on Details button and observed the subsequent message, the executable is clean. This digital signature is OK. There is no need to proceed further.” Example : To see what a digital signature looks like, examine utorrent, comodo firewall’s installer or any other security product’s installer. Identifying executable nature through product information 4. If you do not see a digital signature tab, your focus should shift to the Version tab, if it’s available. Click and check details such as Company name, Product name etc. I’ve only seen a few malwares with fake version information. Real Incident: An infected version of daemon tools was found with fake version info, which said that the product was from Microsoft. This allowed identification of evil presence without further checks. Identifying executables nature by examining content We mentioned that WinRAR could easily be used as a binder to combine malware and software executable to create an infected executable.

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We also examined why such an infected executable is not identified by security softwares. Thankfully, the extraction process for these simple binders is also easy when you use uniextract.

Infected self extracting executable + UniExtract ==> Malware + Software

However, before we actually start extracting data inside suspected executable files, let us fix a small problem caused by the hidden file attribute, which can be set on files using the properties menu for each file. To view hidden files, Start -> My computer -> Tools -> Folder Options -> View Tab Tick the checkbox - Display the contents of system folders Tick the checkbox - Show hidden files and folders Clear the checkbox - Hide extensions for known file types Clear the checkbox - Hide protected operating system files (Recommended)

Right click on the executable and choose UniExtract to Subdir. This tool automatically analyzes common packers and extracts the insides of the executable to a sub-directory. If the package could be reversed, you’ll see a new sub-directory with the same name as the executable file. Right-Click on the new sub-directory and select open. I’d recommend not to double click on folders using your mouse. I have seen a few folks using a bad mouse who end up clicking too fast and run the infected executable inside the sub-directory. If the directory contains another executable, which has the same name as the original executable file which you extracted, this indicates that your original executable file was infected. In this case, you will most likely notice an additional executable file (of smaller size) in the same directory, which is most likely the malware.

Demo: Live malware posted by a person, which infected many users. This remained completely undetected for a long time. Malware : * Download this rar file and extract the contents of this rar file to a directory named “Binary Analysis”. * You should see a file named idman514.exe * Right click and examine the properties of this file. Since the Digital Signature tab is absent, examine the version tab. The file version should be reported as 6.0.2900.5512. The IDM version downloaded was 5.14. An anomaly is clearly visible. * Right click on idman514.exe and choose UniExtract to Subdir. * You should see a new sub-directory named idman514. * Right click and open the directory. Inside, you’ll notice two executable files; namely, idman514.exe and x.exe. * Right click and choose properties on idman514.exe, which is inside the sub-directory. You should notice both Digital Signature and version tabs. Examine the details. You’ll find them to be accurate.


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Inference: * The downloaded rar file contained idman514.exe. This is an infected executable. * The sub-directory contained another idman514.exe, which showed proper version information and digital signature. This is the original software. * x.exe is possibly a malware. Navigate to “Binary Analysis” folder. Press Ctrl + A to select all files and press Shift + Delete to delete all infected files. The analysis is complete. Now reset the file view state to default settings.

Start -> My computer -> Tools -> Folder Options -> View Tab Clear the checkbox - Display the contents of system folders Clear the checkbox - Show hidden files and folders Tick the checkbox - Hide extensions for known file types Tick the checkbox - Hide protected operating system files (Recommended)

Note for expert users: You will realize that 6.0.2900.5512 represents a windows version. You’d have often noticed this, when you clicked Help->About in windows explorer (My Computer). This indicates that malware and software were combined to create infected executable using simple but effective OS services. Signature detection using CFF Explorer will reveal that this malware was crafted using CAB compression, which is a commonly used method for deploying software in windows. This is completely impervious to detection from personal security softwares

Using uniextract to examine file’s internals is not a professional approach to confirm presence of malware. However, it’s a simple technique which allows any casual internet user to quickly identify the hidden perils in infected executables without any expertise. If the version info, digital signature and uniextract results are inconclusive, one should proceed to the actual analysis phase. Dynamic analysis phase In dynamic analysis phase, we will try to identify the nature of executables by executing them. Assuming that you’ve installed all necessary tools, Right-Click on the executable and choose Open with CFF Explorer. Do NOT click on the Open option, otherwise you’ll end up executing the malware on your machine. The File Info section to the right shows the executable type. I will restrict my article to common file types you will encounter, when you analyze binaries.

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Microsoft Cabinet(CAB) SFX InstallShield Cabinet Compression {different versions} Inno Setup UPX 7 ZIP SFX WINZIP SFX PKZIP SFX RAR SFX


Microsoft Visual C++ {different versions} Dev - C++ {different versions} MingWin32 - Dev - C++ {different versions} Delphi {different versions} Microsoft Visual Basic {different versions} Nullsoft {different versions} AutoIt {different versions} No match found Unknown format


ASPack {different versions} Themida {different versions} Armadillo Morphine Yoda crypt FSG MEW NsPack Packman PECompact Execryptor or PELock Enigma Protector {Other}Packers, protectors and cryptors


.NET executable Java and other executables based on frameworks


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Category-1 binaries are automatically handled by uniextract. Hence, analyzing them is a cinch. However, if uniextract did not create a sub-directory or if uniextract created an empty sub-directory, it indicates that uniextract made an error in deducing the file type or it indicates a malicious custom coded binder. We cannot know whether the executable was malware since we cannot see inside it. Category-2 consists of applications, which are created using commonly used programming languages. The code used to make these applications is unknown. Hence, they are not detected as malware by personal security softwares. Once again, there’s uncertainty. Category-3 consists of files protected using one of the binder algorithms, Armadillo, Themida etc. These protections are automatically diagnosed as malware by almost all major personal security softwares, since these protectors use advanced methods to run applications in a secure isolated environment. Personal security software cannot control execution of these tools; hence, they label these applications as malware. Again, neither the personal security software nor the human can be completely sure of malware presence. Category-4 consists of files that depend on additional framework and the analysis technique will not be covered in this article. Hence, once we are past the uniextract stage, we would have to apply a completely different method to confirm presence of malware; we must execute these files! We will monitor the changes that occur when we execute the executable file to confirm malware activity. Let us assume that x.exe obtained previously is the reported file. We will analyze this file to ascertain its nature. Uniextract fails over x.exe. Click on cancel when uniextract requests you to analyze the file manually. Right click and open with CFF Explorer. This reveals that the file is of type Microsoft Visual Basic v5.0/v6.0. This belongs to Category-2.

We will now execute and identify the nature of this executable in a controlled environment. Since controlled environments cannot be setup by everybody on a home pc, we will use the analysis reports generated by services on the internet. What follows is a list of online analysis services.

Online Analysis services:

* Anubis analysis reports are fast, presented clearly and provide clear reasons for layman, with a conclusive report about why believe that an executable is malware or clean. Anubis reports are also displayed on the browser and don’t require an email address. All other malware analysis websites require a working email. However, many malwares have surfaced, which can bypass anubis analysis methods. Yet, anubis remains a popular choice for analyzing malware. * Sunbelt reports are detailed and include a tremendous amount of information about everything that happens when an executable is executed. It’s more sophisticated than anubis and is a dependable tool, when anubis fails to generate reports. However, it should be obvious that the executable is infected when anubis report generation fails. * Norman sandbox is similar to anubis, but the results are sent via email. I’ve had bad experience with their captcha system, their reports and personally don’t recommend it. * I’ve not tested ThreatExpert’s sandbox. They support submissions through the browser and via a submission applet, which is a program you can install on your desktop. Results are sent via email and you can create a threat expert account to maintain analysis reports about the list of files you submit through your ThreatExpert account. 11  Technology


Interpreting analysis reports The subsequent list mentions behavior commonly associated with malware widely found on the internet. Malware Behavior: * Previously, I mentioned that malware and software may get separated from the infected executable at some point of time during execution. Common binder code extracts files to harddrive and execute the malware. Hence, if you notice that the executable file you execute CREATES another executable file(s), this indicates that the executable file is infected. * If an executable connects to the internet through FTP and IRC protocols, it’s most certainly infected. Experienced readers will realize that the tool, which connects via FTP is often a password stealer and the tool, which connects through IRC protocol will join your PC to a botnet and often provides the attacker complete control over your PC. * If an executable immediately adds itself to windows registry to automatically execute each time windows starts. * If an executable such as keygen, which do not require internet connection try to access internet, they are infected. If an executable communicates with another executable or service, especially - services.exe, netsh.exe, wmic.exe, RPC service usage indicates that the infected executable is possibly looking for a way to connect to the internet or weaken your system’s defenses for compromise. Anubis describes RPC usage and internet access attempts using the following buzz words.

Anubis - internet access attempt: Services started section : RASMAN NtConnectPort(\RPC Control\ntsvcs was called.

Often, this is the only way to determine presence of malware since most good binders directly extract all files to memory. * If an executable file accesses a resource which it shouldn’t need, it is a malware. Example : A keygen, which queries your firefox profile, MSN, Trillian or any other browser or IM data is dangerous. * If an executable connects to all the wrong IP addresses, it’s malware. Example, a RS downloader tool, which connects to nonrapidshare server is most likely transmitting your password to the tool’s owner.


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Let’s try to interpret a couple of anubis reports using the malware characteristics mentioned above. Note that sample.exe is the file which we upload to anubis. Report file Page#2: sample.exe CREATES dwwin.exe. Dwwin.exe CALLS services.exe. Services.exe is an important windows executable. It shouldn’t be called usually. Hence, dwwin.exe is the malware.

To confirm malware, we can look at the detailed information on services.exe to understand why it was called. Page #2: NtConnectPort(\RPC Control\ntsvcs was called.

This is also confirmed by Page #16: dwwin.exe - Windows Service Activities Services started -> RASMAN, which is Microsoft Remote Access Service This indicates that internet access was requested by dwwin.exe Furthermore, file activities result shows creation and deletion of two text files C:\DOCUME~1\user\LOCALS~1\Temp\d291_appcompat.txt C:\DOCUME~1\user\LOCALS~1\Temp\1E002D.dmp These possibly contained stored browser passwords. This confirms that ntsvcs helps access browser interface (Computer Browser service).

Report file Page #2 : winlogon.exe \??\C:\WINDOWS\system32\winlogon.exe Analysis reason: sample.exe injected a remote thread into this process winlogon is a critical windows file. Injection indicates exploit code. Page #2 : NtConnectPort(\RPC Control\ntsvcs was called. This indicates that the exploit code caused winlogon.exe to start RASMAN and call NtConnectPort(\RPC Control\ntsvcs. VPR1.tmp and stf2.tmp look like exploit code or browser passwords. Page #44: cmd /c “”C:\WINDOWS\TEMP\bat4.tmp.bat” “ .BAT files contain list of commands to be executed by cmd. The contents are not reported by anubis reports. However, this indicates that something nasty is being attempted here. 13  Technology


Often, anubis report should be sufficient to detect malware commonly encountered on the internet. Hence, the reminder of this article will elucidate the steps necessary to analyze executables when anubis report generation fails or when overwhelming suspicion over the executable file exists. I’ve seen anubis report generation fail or be inconclusive under the following circumstances. The report fails to get generated when the protection is too strong for anubis to handle. I would automatically classify such executables dangerous. The submitted executable file may depend on other factors such as visual basic support files or .NET environment, which may not be supported by online analysis services. Anubis analysis consists of a screencap of the application, which contains information such as missing visual basic support file or absence of .NET environment. In this scenario, try submitting the file to another analysis service such as sunbelt. If the results are still inconclusive again, we can try to execute the suspicious file in sandboxie and observe the changes that happen. However, before running a suspected executable on your PC, configure your firewall and intrusion detection systems well. This portion of the analysis is for advanced users only and should be attempted only by people with adequate knowledge about computer security. Before attempting this, configure your firewall to alert you when applications require internet access or make any filesystem changes. Here’s a sample configuration.

Comodo firewall: Network Defense - Custom Policy Mode, Alert settings - Very High. This is mandatory. Proactive Defense - Paranoid mode. This will alert you about dll hooks and file access.

When you run executable inside sandboxie, monitor file accesses, internet access, dll hooks, temporary file creation etc. There are refined methods to analyze and identify nature of executables. However, this article’s goal is to enable casual internet users to quickly identify commonly distributed malware on the internet using freeware tools and services. I hope that this article has been useful for you. If you have questions, P.M me on the forum. I will try to answer questions which interest me. Enigma86


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– Even Your Grandma Can Use This

TECH By LinuxTrance Layout by oddbrawl

Dispelling some of the myths that hover around Linux and Ubuntu

I will try my best to refrain from an impassioned and sappy review of Ubuntu, as it is my operating system of choice, and I have already driven away many family members and friends due to my sheer enthusiasm over Ubuntu; even my girlfriend chooses to play deaf if I mention anything related to my true love, Ubuntu. Besides making me giggle like a schoolgirl, which is very unmanly, Ubuntu handles nearly everything I ask of, never complaining, and always offering helpful tips and guidance if I become perplexed. In short, Ubuntu wants to be loved, and I am glad to shower it with love and affection. Anyway, I’m getting way off topic; sorry about that, folks. Back to the review! This article is not about converting new users to Ubuntu/Linux, or to prove that Ubuntu is superior to Windows. That is not what it is about, and it would make a very dreary article if I went along that route. My purpose will be to dispel some of the myths that hover around Linux and Ubuntu, as well as show you some helpful tips and programs that you can use on Ubuntu. 15  Technology


“just to rub it in their faces as to how much your computer is better than theirs” Let me tell you a rather personal story Here are some comments from to set things off. Warez-BB users My cousin decided to download some naughty things on my Grandmother’s using Ubuntu: computer which infected her computer and put it in a near comatose state. The computer was old, and the viruses basically made it inoperable. My Grandmother called me and asked for my help as I am THE computer geek in the family. I told her there were a couple of options. I could 1.) Install a “quasi-legal” version of XP (TinyXP) in her case, or 2.) I could install a newer Operating System called Ubuntu which I thought she might like. She decided upon Ubuntu since she is a rather strict lady and would want nothing that is illegitimate. So, let’s fast forward six months, and see how my Grandmother is coping with using Linux. I asked her if she found it easy to use, or difficult. She told me that once she realized how to use the Add/Remove programs area, she found it easier to use than XP as she never had to update anything and all the programs she needed were in the Applications category under proper tags, which classified the types of programs she had installed. She actually managed to setup her own email program without my assistance. She also set up a Skype account with very little help from me, merely following a simple instructional email I sent her explaining the basics. She loved Ubuntu and laughed when I told her I had a valid copy of Windows XP if she wanted it! Why did I tell you that long, heart-warming story? Well think of it this way: If my 76 year old Grandmother can run Ubuntu, then why can’t you? If she finds it so easy to use, do you really think you would have any problem running Ubuntu? Enough of my personal stories, let’s get into the reasons why I believe most users will love Ubuntu. I ran a questionnaire in the Off-Topic forum on Warez-BB asking Ubuntu users to summarize a few short, concise statements as to why they think Ubuntu is a good OS to use, and why others should consider it. THESCENE  /  WAREZ-BB.ORG

Dj Melik Doesn’t use as [many] resources, because it puts processes to sleep. Visually [it’s] great, Compiz Fusion is great. The Add/Remove feature is great. Brazuca The community is great, and the support is unparalleled. Stability and quickness, even for an older machine. DeathFromAbove states: The update feature - really simple to use. Low system requirements. It is a stable system. At one point I had [an] uptime of 86 days. [It’s] Free! Other Comments: Ubuntu is just plain awesome. The terminal is great once you get used to it and with WINE you don’t even have to worry about compatibility issues. It looks great, [it’s] secure, [it’s] stable and is just overall an amazing OS. (cozmocramer1234). Compiz Fusion is amazing!! The effects are great. Those are a few handpicked comments. There were quite a few more but I will not list them all here due to space requirements. The general consensus all the comments held was that Ubuntu was exceptionally easy to use, simple to install, was stable and quick, even on older computers, and has unparalleled community support.

Chatting using Ubuntu? Yes, you can. Now let’s discuss some common concerns and complaints about Ubuntu. Something I notice all the time is that Ubuntu does not support .mp3, .avi, .mpg, .mp4, or other forms of audio and video files that Windows supports. It takes two steps to enable these files to work in Ubuntu. First, let’s go into the terminal by clicking Applications > Accessories > Terminal A rather ugly box with a prompt will pop up. Say hello to the terminal window. If you are a casual user, you will probably not see much of the Terminal, but if you are an intermediate to power user, you will see it a lot. Regardless, let’s type in the following command sudo apt-get install ubuntu-restricted-extras *if you are using Xubuntu or Kubuntu, simply replace ubuntu- with either xubuntu or kubuntu* Sudo is a request to install the package as an Administrator. The sudo command will nearly always be followed by a request for a password, which is identical to the password you used to install Ubuntu. Once you install this package, just log out using CTRL – ALT – TAB and log back in. You will be able to play a variety of media, movies, audio, and more! As mentioned in the last issue of theSCENE, it is a good idea to download a program called WINE. To install WINE, simply click on Applications > Add/Remove, then search for WINE. This program enables you to run .exe files and other windows files. It is useful when you need to run programs like the Rapidshare Uploader, or when installing a game. Let’s assume you are like me and you like to dazzle and astonish your friends and show them how remarkable your computer is, just to rub it in their faces as to how much your computer is better than theirs. I will describe two methods that you can use to alter the appearance of your Ubuntu desktop. First, if you are just looking to change the toolbars or use a darker or lighter theme, the easiest way is to download a theme package that will transform the look of Ubuntu quickly and easily. Theme packages are generally very small in size and take no effort on your part at all. Gnome-Look has some excellent themes for Ubuntu. Make sure you download the GTK 2.x themes, as they will work flawlessly in Ubuntu. Use the link below to visit the Gnome-Look site. After you download your theme, you want to install it, right? It is easy. Just click System > Preferences > Appearance. Once you are in the Appearance screen, simply click the “install” button and navigate to the file you just downloaded. You will be prompted to install the theme and after a few seconds, you will be asked if you want to switch to the new theme immediately. Voilà! It is simple! Let me describe the other method. 16  Technology

I am almost afraid to utter the next word, as I know Ubuntu nerds like me will be salivating as soon as they read it. Compiz, that’s right I said it...COMPIZ! The Compiz effects package is breathtaking and sets the standards for the industry in my opinion. The cube effect is unparalleled and astonishing! The fire effects dazzle the eye and are followed by gasps from unsuspecting users. In short, if you want to impress and baffle your friends, then you should install Compiz! Installing Compiz is rather simple. Open a terminal window and type in the following commands: sudo apt-get install emerald Then sudo apt-get install compizconfig-settings-manager Now you have Compiz installed! You may now access Compiz through System > Preferences > Compiz Settings Manager. Please make sure your current hardware driver is up to date and is properly installed. If not, Compiz may not run as well as you would have expected. Let’s say you love Ubuntu, but not really fond of the Gnome environment. There is a way to transform Ubuntu into Kubuntu or Xubuntu. If you use the method I am about to show, you will have the option to boot Ubuntu, Kubuntu, or Xubuntu from the login screen. ~ sudo apt-get install kubuntu-desktop ~ sudo apt-get install xubuntu-desktop (Note) Please remember to remove the ~ or the command will not work! You may have to download and install a sizeable amount of files if you want to install one of the alternate desktops. In my case I need to download 400mb to install Kubuntu. However, this is a good alternative if you prefer the KDE or XFCE desktop environments. After downloading and installing the entire desktop package, simply reboot. Upon reaching the login window, click the dropdown box on the splash screen and choose which desktop environment you wish to boot. I briefly covered the installation of programs in Ubuntu, but I want to cover it in a bit more depth so that you have a greater grasp of how easy it is to install programs in Ubuntu. I listed quite a few terminal commands that may seem daunting to a new user. However, rest assured, if you are unfamiliar with Linux, or unwilling to learn the Terminal and its commands, you can use the Add/Remove Programs GUI as opposed to the Terminal. Simply click Applications > Add/Remove Now make sure the “All Available Applications” marker is checked, and you are set to download. The Add/Remove section is separated in a few subsections making it easy to browse through programs and find what you are looking for. If you are in need of word processing software, then you would click the “Office” tab. If you are like me, you would prefer to just scroll through all the programs and check out all the goodies that Ubuntu has to offer. Installing a program is very simple. Just click on the checkbox and it will be placed in the queue. Once you select all the programs you wish to download, all you need to do is click the “Apply Changes” button, and Ubuntu will automatically download and install the programs you select. When all downloads have been processed and installed, you can find them in their corresponding subsections in the Applications area.

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Compiz and Windows Media Player show Ubuntu in full effect. It is as easy as that. Ubuntu tries very hard to make its interface easy enough for new users to be able to pick up and use without any training or studying commands. In all honesty, you could never touch the Terminal window and you would still have a perfectly happy Ubuntu experience. Going back to the story of my Grandmother; she has never used the Terminal window, yet she still swears by Ubuntu, and considers it an amazing Operating System that is very easy to use. Do not let the Terminal window, or commands, frighten you. If you don’t want to use them, then the answer is simple... just don’t use them. Furthermore, I have heard quite a few people mention that Windows Only programs like MSN are difficult to setup in Ubuntu, and are not worth all the time and effort to install. This leaves me scratching my head and pondering. One of the main aspects of Linux is to provide Open Source alternatives to some of the programs you use daily in Windows. Therefore, MSN may not work perfectly in Ubuntu, however, MSN clones such as aMSN and EMESENE works flawlessly. Pidgin is supported directly by the Ubuntu community as well, thus take the words of these naysayers with a grain of salt. Nearly every task you run on Windows is able to be run on Linux. Normally it is a bit easier to do, as you have several Open Source alternatives to the program or task you require. My advice is this: If you are unhappy with Windows, or if you were forced into using Vista after purchasing a new computer, do not despair. Give Ubuntu a try! The community support for Ubuntu is exceptional; I have never seen a community this dedicated to a project, and I sincerely mean that. If you ever have any issues with Ubuntu, there is a wealth of information on Ubuntu’s main site, the Ubuntu Forums, from Warez-BB users, or on the Internet. Help is always just a click away.


By tomb08uk

Welcome to my article on Apple’s digital media receiving device, Apple TV. I have written this article to give you an insight into the Apple TV; what it does and what it has to offer. The Apple TV was released and ready for sale during mid March of 2007. It was originally shipped with only one 40GB model purchasable. Apple then released a second model, which was 160GB in size by the end of March 2007. The Apple TV was produced to connect to a TV, or alternatively to other display equipments such as a projector, via the HDMI or component video connections. The Apple TV is designed to operate with a high-definition or enhanced-definition television, although the unit will operate on a standard definition TV. In doing so however, Apple informs you that you may experience an output display which is vertically stretched, as standard TV’s do not usually support anamorphic widescreen, which is required to get full advantage of the Apple TV’s display outputs. The Apple TV is capable of connecting to computers either by Ethernet or via wireless, which runs on the IEEE 802.11b, g and n protocols. The Apple TV can be paired up to a maximum of five computers, and up to five Apple TVs can be connected together to allow a number of features. These include allowing applications such as iTunes to synchronize its library, streaming peer to peer or to a network, or to copy the contents of the media from the computer(s) to the Apple TV’s own hard disk. Synchronization can be easily setup and offers the option to perform a complete or selective synchronization, depending on the user’s preferences. THESCENE  /  WAREZ-BB.ORG

After originally releasing the Apple TV, Apple then released a software update known as ‘Take 2’, which allows the device to function as a standalone unit and not required to be connected to another device to provide content. As mentioned earlier, the facility of the wireless connectivity to stream at n standard means that Apple TV is capable of streaming up to 720p high definition content. The concept behind the capability to stream content is to reduce the need for additional storage and also implies that all content can be centralized and accessed at one central location. Apple TV’s interface is presented on the software application ‘Front Row’ which was released on Mac OSX 10.4+ computers. The software breaks the content into six categories: Movies, TV Shows, Music, Podcasts, Photos and the video streaming site; YouTube. Content can be organized and displayed by show, date, artist, album, song, genre and composer. The support of YouTube was implemented in the middle of June 2008 to allow the device to receive direct streams from YouTube. Navigation is provided with the use of the apple remote which is paired with the device, preventing conflicts with any other IR device which might be nearby. 18  Technology

The Apple TV allows you to rent or buy from the iTunes store and supports a range of formats. The following video formats are supported: H.264, MPEG-4 The following audio formats are supported: AAC, MP3, AIFF, WAV, Apple Lossless The following photo formats are supported: JPEG, BMP, GIF, TIFF, PNG


Processor Intel Crofton 1.0GHz Processor Memory 256 MB of 400MHz DDR Memory Graphics NVIDIA GeForce Go 7300 Ports and interfaces HDMI (video and audio)7 Component video Optical audio Analogue RCA stereo audio 10/100BASE-T Ethernet USB 2.0 802.11n wireless networking6 Built-in IR receiver (works with included Apple Remote)

System requirements Mac: Mac OS X v10.3.9 or v10.4.9 or later or PC: Windows XP Home or Professional (SP2) or Windows Vista iTunes 7.6 or later, iTunes 8.0.1 recommended AirPort Extreme, Wi-Fi 802.11b, 802.11g or 802.11n wireless network6 (wireless video streaming requires 802.11g or 802.11n) or 10/100BASE-T Ethernet network

19  Technology


By Tomb08uk

Thank you for reading my second article. In this article, I have written about the topic of securing your Mac: running OS X. I have also produced two bonus topics which I thought would be of interest to Mac users out there – I hope you enjoy.

• If you want your computer to instantly download important updates, select "Download important updates in the background". When the update finishes downloading, the software update utility will inform you that the updates are ready to be installed.

»»Disabling root Root is basically an ‘Admin’ feature which provides a user with complete control of the system. The best practice though is to only use ‘Root’ when you need privileges. On a day-to-day basis, it is best to use a ‘Standard’ account and enable ‘Root’ when necessary. If you use the ‘Admin’ account as a default account, you will be unable to carry out the instructions below without creating and using a secondary ‘Standard’ account.

To disable root, perform the following actions: • Go to ‘Finder’, select ‘Go’, then ‘Utilities’ and select ‘Directory Utility’. • Then enter an administrator account name, the corresponding password and select OK. From the ‘Edit’ menu, click ‘Disable Root User’. • To enable root, perform the following actions: • Go to ‘Finder’, select ‘Go’, then ‘Utilities’ and select ‘Directory Utility’. • Then enter an administrator account name, the corresponding password and select OK. From the ‘Edit’ menu, click ‘Enable Root User’. • You will then be requested to enter the root password. Enter the password and click ‘OK’.

»»Software Updates

»»Firewall OS X comes pre-installed with a software based firewall utility, which is intended to block any unwanted network communications to your Mac. By default, OS X sets the firewall to ‘allow all incoming connections’. It is recommended that you enable the OS X firewall to enhance the security on your Mac and to do this there are two options. You can either enable ‘Allow only essential services’ which then sets the firewall utility to allow only vital OS X services to connect to your Mac, or the other option is to ‘Set access for specific services and applications’ which allows the user to add applications and services, and choose independently whether an application or service is to allow or block incoming connections.

Software updates are periodically released for users to download. The updates include patches to resolve arisen new bugs, but more importantly include any security updates which helps to eliminate any threats to your Mac. To update your Mac software, you can either allow your Mac to automatically check for updates on a chosen frequency or you can manually check for updates. To manually check for updates, click the Apple icon at the top left of your screen. Select ‘Software Update...’ and the software update application will check for any updates that are currently not installed and informs you of new ones.

In order to set your Mac to automatically check for updates on a regular basis, execute the following actions: • Open ‘System Preferences’ and click ‘Software Update’. • Select "Check for updates". • Choose Daily, Weekly, or Monthly from the menu. THESCENE  /  WAREZ-BB.ORG

20  Technology

I advise you to enable ‘Set access for specific services and applications’, as this is a more secure option.

OS X comes with a vast selection of sharing services, which can be easily enabled (some are enabled by factory default).

• To do this, go to ‘Preferences’, select the ‘Security’ icon and then select the ‘Firewall’ tab.

Disabling any unused services on your Mac can help prevent any unwanted access. For instance, a threat could attempt to connect to your Mac by using the Remote Login sharing service. If none of the sharing services are used on your Mac, then you can disable them by going to ‘Preferences’ and selecting the ‘Sharing’ icon.

• Once you have completed the above step, you will notice a button called ‘Advanced...’ Click it, and an additional dialog box will appear. Select both check boxes, labeled as ‘Enable Firewall Logging’ and ‘Enable Stealth Mode’. The first option sets the firewall utility to log any firewall activity, such as blocked sources, destinations and attempts, which can then be viewed by clicking the ‘Open Log...’ button. The second option enables ‘Stealth Mode’, which ensures that any traffic not allowed to access your Mac receives no response from your Mac - not even an acknowledgement that your Mac exists.

»»General Security Preferences

»»Networking Depending on the connectivity used to allow your Mac to connect to the Internet, there are different options to secure your connection. Ethernet (cable) and Airport (wireless) are the most recurrently used methods to connect to a network, thus I have covered these topics below. Ethernet is the more secure of the two connectivity methods, simply because the only option to connect to the same traffic is via a network cable. However the majority of users prefer to use Airport as the benefits of reducing cables is greatly preferred.

In the general OS X preferences panel, which can be accessed by visiting ‘Preferences’ and then selecting the ‘Security’ icon, you will see that there are several options to facilitate further security features.

I advise you to enable four of the six checkboxes. They are: • ‘Require password to wake this computer from sleep or screen saver’, ‘Disable automatic login’, ‘Require password to unlock each System Preferences pane’ and ‘Use secure virtual memory’. Other than ‘Use secure virtual memory’, the features are self explanatory. Enabling the feature ‘Use secure virtual memory’ sets the Mac to erase any information from RAM written to the hard disk by virtual memory.

»»Disabling Sharing Services

The settings within OS X for Ethernet and Airport are nearly identical. There is the additional option to set the Airport settings. • To access the settings for Ethernet and Airport, go to ‘Preferences’ and then select the ‘Network’ icon. You will then see types of connectivity which can be used with your Mac. When you are connected to your network, you will be notified by a green indication light in the ‘Network’ screen next to the type of connectivity. • Select the type of connection you are using, and then click the ‘Advanced...’ button. You will then see a tab labeled ‘Proxies’. Click this and make sure that all the protocols not used on your Mac are disabled, as this will benefit in the same way as the ‘Disabling Sharing Services’. If you are an Airport user, make sure the network you connect to is secure; you will understand this if you are requested to enter a security password when you first connect to the network. If you wish to check, you can click the ‘Advanced...’ button, click the ‘Airport’ tab and you will see an area where any preferred networks used are shown; check the security column to see what type of security is used on the connected network. If no security is enabled, check your settings within your router for further details.

»» Hard Disk Encryption OS X allows two ways to enable hard disk encryption on your Mac. The commonly used method is Apple’s utility ‘FileVault’. FileVault encrypts the user’s home drive, but not the whole hard disk. 21  Technology


The method I am showing you involves using Apple’s ‘Disk Utility’. The reasons for this is that there are known issues when using ‘FileVault’ with Apple’s backup utility ‘Time Machine’, which many users utilize. Before detailing the process on how to encrypt your hard disk, I will provide a detailed overview of why encrypting your hard disk is beneficial. A hard disk that has not been encrypted can easily be read by turning the Mac on and navigating to the drive if no password has been used on startup. Otherwise it can be read by removing the hard disk from the Mac and connecting it either by a USB/Firewire ‘caddy’ or installing it as a secondary hard disk into another machine. Even if a password has been set on the Mac by the original user, there are professional applications that can be used to remove default user passwords, which will give full access to any personnel accessing your hard disk; your once private data is no longer private. Encrypting your hard disk using the ‘Disk Utility’ setup will ensure that data on your Mac hard disk will be encrypted and de-encrypted ‘on the fly’. ‘On the fly’ refers to your hard disk being encrypted as soon as the data is being read or written. Even if a power failure occurs, your data would still be encrypted.

To encrypt your hard disk, perform the following actions: • Open ‘Disk Utility’ which can be accessed by going to ‘Applications’, then ‘Utilities’ and selecting ‘Disk Utility’. • Then select your hard disk running OS X, usually labeled ‘Macintosh HD’. • Then select the icon ‘New Image’ and type a name in the ‘Save As’ field. You will then see a ‘Where’ in the drop-down menu below. Select anywhere you wish, such as ‘Documents’. Then enter a name you want to use for the disk image when it is mounted in the ‘Volume’ field. • Afterwards, set the ‘Image Format’ drop down menu to ‘compressed’, which is likely already set to default, then select the ‘Encryption’ field to ‘128-bit AES encryption (recommended)’. You may select 256-bit encryption which provides higher encryption, but it will be slower and more processing usage will occur on your Mac. Then select ‘Sparse’ image from the ‘Image Format’ menu. • Once you have completed the above steps, select ‘Create’. • You will then be prompted to enter a password, so choose a password which you can easily remember, nothing obvious to guess. By default, the password will be stored in your keychain, but if you do not want this then deselect the ‘Remember password’. • I advice you to set the password to be stored in your keychain, else you run the risk of forgetting your password and then losing all your data as you will not be able to access it without the password - once you have chosen your options, click ‘OK’. When all of the above steps are done, your disk image will be completed. You will then have to mount the disk image when using your Mac and this will make sure all your data is encrypted and that you can access your data. You will be able to add and remove files from the image and it will act as a real physical disk. To stop people viewing the data, eject the mounted image – this will safely lock away and encrypt your data and can only be accessed by entering the password again. You can set OS X to auto mount the disk image upon login by going to ‘Preferences’, selecting ‘Accounts’, clicking the ‘Login Items’ and adding the disk image to the list. This means that whenever the Mac is booted and the login password is entered, (as long as the disk image password is set in keychain) the disk image will auto mount.

»»Secure Empty Trash & Erase Free Space


To empty your ‘Trash’, you can either open ‘Trash’ and click ‘Empty Trash’ or you can go to ‘Finder’ and select ‘Empty Trash’. To empty the trash securely, go to ‘Finder’ and select ‘Secure Empty Trash...”. The difference between ‘Emp-

ty Trash’ and ‘Secure Empty Trash’ is that the latter option creates seven deleting passes over the unwanted data, making the data a lot less retrievable. Another great way to delete files is to run the ‘Erase Free Space’ feature in ‘Disk Utility’. As you delete data on your Mac by emptying the trash, OS X will delete the information used to access your data, but not actually delete your data. Though the disk space that was used by the data you deleted is marked as free space, the deleted files remain intact until a time when new data is overwritten in the hard disk. This leaves a potential for the data to be recovered. To erase the data using the ‘Disk Utility’, find ‘Disk Utility’, then the hard disk you want to erase free space from, then select the ‘Erase’ tab and then click ‘Erase Free Space’. A dialog box will load showing three options to erase the free space; ‘Zero Out Deleted Files’, ‘7-Pass Erase of Deleted Files’ and ‘35-Pass Erase of Deleted Files’. I advise you to run the 35-pass process, as this has got to do with thirty five passes of the hard disk. Depending on the quantity of data to be erased, this can take quite some time. Therefore you may only want to run the ‘Zero Out Deleted Files’, which writes zeros over the unused space on the hard disk.

»»Web Browsing OS X has Apple’s web browser ‘Safari’ pre-installed. By default, Safari supports SSL as well as TLS, which allows a secure encryption channel to the Internet. Safari does not require any customization to its security, though for multiple users who use the same system, there is a ‘Private Browsing’ feature which sets Safari to not store any history data, such as cookies, search engine queries, downloading history and online forms filled out. Also, there is a feature to prevent pop-ups. To enable this feature, load ‘Safari’, click the Apple icon and select ‘Block Pop-Up Windows’. For users who use the popular ‘Mozilla Firefox’, there is an option to enable SSL and TLS encryption which is not enabled by default. To do this, load ‘Mozilla Firefox’ and go to ‘Preferences’, then select the ‘Advanced’ icon, then go to the ‘Encryption’ tab and tick both the ‘Use SSL’ and ‘Use TLS’ options. A great addition to ‘Mozilla Firefox’ is an add-on called ‘CookieCuller’. ‘CookieCuller’ is an add-on which you install and it automatically deletes your cookies upon opening your browser. A great feature to this add-on is you can add cookies to a protected list, which means ‘CookieCuller’ will not delete cookies in the protected list. To add specific cookies to the protect list, perform the following actions: Download ‘CookieCuller’ from addon/82 and then install. Once installed, load ‘Mozilla Firefox’ and go to the website which you want to protect the cookies in the future. Once done, go to ‘Tools’, select ‘CookieCuller’ and in the list, select the cookie you wish to protect, click the button labeled ‘Protect Cookie’ and click ‘OK’.

»» Mail/SpamSieve Apple’s email client ‘Mail’ comes pre-installed in OS X and supports the standard security features; SSL. You can enable SSL by opening ‘Mail’, ‘Preferences’, ‘Accounts’ and then ‘Advanced’. You will then see a check box at the bottom of the dialog box to enable SSL. Tick this to enable SSL and also select ‘Password’ in the ‘Authentication’ box. Note: You can only enable SSL if the mailbox you connect to supports SSL, though most do and the majority requires this to be enabled to allow you to access your email. ‘SpamSieve’ is an application that runs alongside ‘Mail’, as well as other OS X email clients that act as a spam filter to catch any unwanted emails. The 22  Technology

reason why ‘SpamSieve’ is such a great application to have is that it easily integrates into email clients and monitors your inbox, thereby learning which emails you need and which are classified as spam. ‘SpamSieve’ automatically produces and maintains an accurate list of emails it needs to block as well as a white list of emails that are considered safe.

ether into ‘Terminal’. You should now see your MAC as the one you set it to be in ‘Terminal’. You now have officially spoofed your Mac’s MAC!

»»SSH Tunneling SSH tunneling is a process where traffic is sent to a remote, encrypted server and protects your traffic from being watched upon by others.

To be able to make use of SSH, you will require OS X and an access to a server running SSH. This can either be an additional Mac, or even a Windows machine running a SSH service. • Once you complete the above steps, you are ready to start using SSH Tunneling. • First, you need to create a tunnel. To do this, you need to know some basic details of the device you plan to tunnel to. The details you need are the server name or IP and the login details, therefore the username and password. • Load ‘Terminal’ and enter the following: • Ssh –D 8080 –f –C –q –N • You will then be requested to enter the password. Once done, your SSH tunnel is setup. • Now that the tunnel is set into place, you need to configure your Mac to use the SSH tunnel that you have setup. To use ‘SpamSieve’, go to and download and follow the installation instructions. Once installed, ‘SpamSieve’ will be integrated into Mail and you can instantly start training ‘SpamSieve’ to suit your needs. Simply click a spam message, go to ‘Message’ and select ‘SpamSieve - Train as Spam’ and the email will instantly be added to the spam list. You can do the same for good messages, except select ‘SpamSieve - Train as Good’. Do the above for the majority of your messages until ‘SpamSieve’ does not prompt you to do so anymore and you will shortly start noticing the benefits of ‘SpamSieve’. The process will be similar for other mail clients, though I have not tested this with other clients.

»»Spoof your MAC address Each network device has a unique MAC address, which is typically made up of a combination of letters and numbers, just like a serial on a product.

To know your current MAC address so that you can set your MAC address back to the original when you wish without rebooting, you need to perform the following actions: • Launch ‘Terminal’ and enter the following command: • Ifconfig en1 | grep ether • You will then receive a result, which will look similar to this:

• Go to ‘Preferences’, then ‘Network’ , click the ‘Advanced…’ button and select the tab labeled ‘Proxy’. You will need to enter the details from your proxy server in the given fields. Once completed, click ‘OK’ – you can now make full use of SSH tunneling.

»»Bonus Feature

Customize your OS X Login Screen Changing the default Apple logo to a customized one is very easy. • First, go to ‘Finder’, then select ‘Go to folder’ and paste the following path exactly as you see it. • /System/Library/CoreServices/SecurityAgentPlugins/loginwindow. bundle/Contents/Resources. • This will then load the relevant directory where you will see a file called applelogo.tif • Copy this file and paste it in a location on your Mac as a backup, in case you wish to change the login screen back to default in the future. • Now find the replacement image you wish to use, making sure it is 90x90, in .tif format and preferably transparent for best results. Rename the file to applelogo.tif and replace the current file with your new one. • Reboot your Mac and login to see your changes. You can revert back to the original, by simply replacing the new file with the old one which you backed up earlier.

Customize your OS X Login Background

• ether [MAC Address here] • Write the MAC address down so you can refer back to it in future (this is not compulsory, as if you do forget to write this down, you can simply reboot your Mac to set the MAC address back to default). • The next thing is to determine how to actually spoof the address. To do this, you have to set the value which was shown from the ifconfig to a different hex value in the following format: aa:bb:cc:dd:ee:ff • As an example, you can set your MAC address to 00:f5:f6:f7:f8:f9, which can be done by entering the following command into ‘Terminal’: • Sudo ifconfig en1 00:f5:f6:f7:f8:f9 • While you are using the sudo command, you maybe be requested to enter your root password if you are not already running as root/admin. • To check that the spoofed MAC address is working, you just have to repeat the same command as earlier, which is to enter Ifconfig en1 | grep 23  Technology

• To change the default login background screen to your own preferred choice, you need to replace the current background file, which is named DefaultDesktop.jpg. You can access this file by opening ‘Finder’, then selecting ‘Go to folder’ and paste the following path, exactly as you see it. • /System/ Library/ CoreServices/ DefaultDesktop.jpg with your own (you will need to rename your chosen file to ‘DefaultDesktop.jpg’ for the change to take effective. THESCENE  /  WAREZ-BB.ORG

»»Bonus Feature - Widgets

Site Watch

Wallsaver t=53&platform=osx&method=sa/ t=56&platform=osx&method=sa/

Site Watch is great for website developers. Site Watch can monitor any website and simply indicate what the current status of the site is, using three color codes: green, red and yellow. To use Site Watch, download and install the above file. IP Locator

Wallsaver allows you to run a screensaver of your choice on your Mac desktop. To use Wallsaver, download then install the above file. Once installed, select which screensaver you would like to see from the rear of the widget, turn it over and select the large green button at the front. You can easily stop it by clicking the same button which would have turned red. iEyeNet at=53&platform=osx&method=sa/download.php?widget=iplocator&vers ion=1.6 IP Locator is a widget that allows you to instantly check the geo-location of an IP. This is useful to see any mysterious IP addresses and allows you to see where a hit to your web site or a potential unwanted intruder to your network originates from. To use IP Locator; download, then install the above file. t=53&platform=osx&method=sa/ iEyeNet is a real-time monitor widget which produces a real-time graph of upload/ download Internet usage of all computers on the network. iEyeNet will work on any SNMP enabled router. This is a great widget for users who have bandwidth limits set by their Internet Service Providers. To use iEyeNet, download and install the above file. Spam-O-Meter at=53&platform=osx&method=sa/ Spam-O-Meter is an awesome widget which allows you to see the percentage of all emails which are marked as spam on the Internet. It can instantly show how many spam emails are delivered since the widget is launched. It also comes with a spam activity meter. To use Spam-O-Meter, download and install the above file. THESCENE  /  WAREZ-BB.ORG

24  Technology

Review By turtledude23 Layout by oddbrawl

NAME: VideoStudio X2 Pro COMPANY: Corel (formerly Ulead) RELEASE DATE: September 2008 Proprietary Software - $99.99 PLATFORM: Windows XP (32/64/MCE), Vista

Corel VideoStudio X2 is a consumer level, non-linear video editing program. It comes in two versions: Standard and Pro.

I have the Pro version installed. However from the comparison checklist provided by Corel, the main differences between the two versions seems to be: Pro supports more formats for input and output like H.264, Pro supports 5.1 multi-channel audio editing, and Pro can create Blu-Ray discs. If cost is an issue then I would go with Standard, since Pro does not add anything too vital. Nevertheless, I suspect cost will not be an issue for anyone reading this article.


used Ulead (bought out by Corel) VideoStudio 11 Plus for nearly a year before X2 came out and I liked it more than any other video editor I have ever used, because of its ease of use, flexibility, nice interface and fairly robust features. New features in X2 include: Intel Quad core support, Blu-Ray support, a series of improvements of old features such as the MPEG optimizer, the Pan & Zoom filter, and miscellaneous changes such as being able to use two title tracks rather than one. VideoStudio is very straightforward to use, flexible and rather powerful for a consumer level video editor. I have personally used several video editors like Adobe Premiere Pro CS3 and Sony Vegas 7, both of which were difficult to use and did not seem to offer anything VideoStudio didn’t. I also tried to use EDIUS Pro 5, Avid Xpress Pro and Avid Liquid, all of which would crash on my fairly powerful computer. In addition, I used the now discontinued Ulead MediaStudio 8, which was the professional version of VideoStudio, and it was also unnecessarily complicated to use and most of the extra features it contained are now included in VideoStudio X2. 25  Technology

“most of the features included in more complicated video editors and is much simpler to use”

The Storyboard View with transition effects in the video library THESCENE  /  WAREZ-BB.ORG



Layout Breakdown

6 2


3 8



1. Taskbar 2. View Select 3. Timeline Zoom 4. Painting Creator 5. Track Icons 6. Attributes Panel 7. Video Library 8. Video Track 9. Title Track 10. Music Track

10 It has a very nice interface especially when compared to most other video editors. Interface may not seem very important, but keep in mind you will be using this program for hours on end, dragging and dropping and trimming. I have selected a few components that I will describe.


The taskbar this is where you select what you want to do with your video. IT is organized in a chronological manner, but you can jump back and forth. You will be spending most of your time in the “Edit” tab. This is where you select your view. I have Timeline View selected, which is the most accurate view as it shows all your tracks stacked on top of each other. There is also the Storyboard View, which is a simple one-track view as seen in Windows Movie Maker or iMovie. Lastly, there is the Audio View, which is similar to Timeline View but it shows the sound waves of each track under them and gives you sound mixing options in the Attributes Panel (#6). This allows you to “zoom” in and out of your Timeline View, e.g. to see how long the tracks are. You can zoom out if you wish to scroll further into the video or edit a large chunk of video, and you can zoom in when you wish to perform precise actions such as trimming half a second or even one frame (usually there’s 24 or 30 frames in a second). This is the Painting Creator, a new feature in X2. It allows you to draw on your video. It has still mode and animation mode. Still mode allows you to draw a static picture on your video. Animation mode “records” the drawings you make, then displays them on the video; it


3 4


is similar to watching someone write on a whiteboard. These icons represent the individual tracks. If you right click on it and select track manager, you will see a small screen on the bottom right where you can add and remove tracks. Extra video tracks (“overlay tracks”) are used by consumers and professionals alike to generate special effects. VideoStudio supports up to six overlay tracks whilst most professional level video editors support up to ninety-nine, although that is considered overkill even by most professionals. This is the attributes panel I referred to back in #2. It looks bland and pointless in the screenshot but when you go to the other tabs, it becomes very useful for executing advanced actions. This panel is the video library, the effects library and the title library when in their respective tabs. Simply drag and drop the item from the library onto the timeline.


6 7

If you want a gap between two videos because you want to place a title by itself, then this is what you need do: Open Paint, go to Image -> Attributes and resize the picture to the size of your video. In my case, it is 720 X 480. Use the paint bucket tool to fill in the whole picture with any colour you wish, though black is the preferred choice. Save it as a bitmap file (for best quality). Then drag and drop it into the timeline. To import video, go to the Capture tab. To import from a camcorder, go to Capture Video, and select split by scene if the option is available. If you have a camcorder that uses a tape like DV, remember to rewind the tape first. To import

a file on your computer, go to Import Digital Media. To trim clips, you can select the clip in the timeline and drag the yellow sidebars. To split up clips, you can select and move the red arrow in the preview window to the place you want it to be split and then click the scissors. If you install the VideoStudio Content Pack, you get extra content such as SmartSound which is a program that integrates into VideoStudio and generates sound loops you can utilize in your video. The content pack also includes some generic videos like the 5-4-3-2-1 countdown video you see in the screenshot. When you go to the Share tab, you will find numerous export options. You can create an MPEG file, upload directly to YouTube, burn a DVD with menus and create video files for iPod and Zune to name a few. If you are going to burn a DVD, you will have to pick either NTSC or PAL. NTSC is the standard for North American TVs and PAL is the standard for European TVs. I recommend Corel VideoStudio X2 Pro for any beginners wishing to use a video editor with a small learning curve or anyone who has used other video editors but found them too difficult or ugly to use. After all the video editors I have tested, VideoStudio is the only one I like use regularly. It has most of the features included in more complicated video editors and is much simpler to use, not to mention a smaller disk space requirement. Remember, it is not size that counts, but how you use it.

Some final tips for any wannabe film makers reading this: 1. Buy a MiniDV camcorder. Mini DVDs record slower and therefore have worse quality. Flash (memory card) camcorders tend to have low image quality as well. Also, you do not require any fancy built in effects, since your video editor will be equipped with all the effects you need. I recommend Sony because they have the best lenses. 2. You do not need those expensive capture cards if you are using a digital camcorder. All you need is a firewire port on your computer. If you do not have one, you can purchase a firewire PCI card for $15.

System Requirements: Intel Pentium 4, AMD Athlon XP (equivalent) or higher recommended Microsoft Windows XP SP2 Home Edition/Professional, Windows XP Media Center Edition, Windows XP Professional x64 Edition, Windows Vista 512 MB of RAM (1 GB or higher recommended) 1 GB of available hard disk space for program installation Windows-compatible sound card (multi-channel sound card for surround sound support recommended) Windows-compatible DVD-ROM for installation Firewire or analog input card for video capture 26  Technology

This Holiday’s Hottest GAMES


ello my fellow Warez-BB members. Here we are again in another issue of theSCENE. Welcome to the gaming section of the magazine for all you avid gamers. This section is created by gamers, for gamers. In this article, we are going to take a close peek at the games to watch out for in the months of November and December. Let’s get started, shall we?

Call of Duty: World At War // This is one of the most anticipated games of the year. Developed by Treyarch, CoD 5 uses the same engine as CoD 4, and takes us back to the roots of the series during WWII. Treyarch promised improved graphics and new weapons and features in the upcoming game, such as the flamethrower and co-op online mode.

Gears of War 2 // This game is  famous for being an exclusive release for the Xbox 360.  As a result, it is  a big gun for Microsoft against its competitors. The game will feature improved graphics and lighting effects,  destructible environments, new weapons, and execution techniques with the popular chainsaw…

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James Bond 007 in Quantum of Solace // Guess who’s back? Our so loved British agent 007! He’s back once again in a new game derived from the movie of the same title. This game  utilizes the same  engine as in both CoD 4 and 5; therefore,  the developers have no excuse to roll out a bad looking game. Usually, games related to movies tend to not succeed, however Treyarch promised an effective cover system and various weapons. Let’s wait and see...

Left 4 Dead // Another survival horror game from Valve, this game will be available on the Xbox 360 and PC. The game uses a simple shooting system à la Resident Evil.  Left 4 Dead has a lot of hype circulating it, so let’s hope Valve will be able to satisfy our expectations.

Mirror’s Edge // Frankly, if you call yourself a gamer and have  not  heard about this game yet, then you have seriously been living under a rock. This is the  final franchise from DICE, featuring the genre of free running and high jumps across rooftops… This game is expected to  introduce a new standard in the FPS games world.


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Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe // I’m sure you have all heard of this game, it will no doubt sell millions of copies because of the 2x fan base. The game features characters from both MK and DC series, a new innovation. We cannot wait to get our hands on this promising game.

Tom Clancy’s EndWar // EndWar looks like a very  promising  title, and  similar to all Tom Clancy’s games, it is  a strategy based game with realistic animations and advanced IA. The best looking feature though is the ability to control your units via voice commands. That’s sweet isn’t it?

Tomb Raider Underworld // The sexy Lara Croft is back once again with a new title added to  its series. TR Underworld will be  even more  challenging than ever. With  enhanced graphics, Lara’s movements have also been revised. It is  a must buy for every fan.

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Resistance 2 // Ouch...! Another exclusive, but it is  only compatible with  the PS3 this time. The game needs no introduction to PS3 gamers:  Resistance 2 is back again with  brand new  weapons, a deeper story and  refined IA.  It also features  sixty simultaneous online players. Huge, isn’t it?

MotorStorm: Pacific Rift // Another PS3 exclusive, Motorstorm is one of the best games released on the PS3.  Believe it or not,  the original game  sold more than a million copies during the console’s launch! That is  why Sony decided to roll out a second game. The newest feature is the migration from the sandy tracks to the tropical islands,  surrounded by  active volcanoes. The game will also feature brand new cars and tracks with mind blowing graphics!

Prince of Persia // You have probably heard about this game during E3. The game was announced and developed by the award-winning studio, Ubisoft Montreal. It will feature a new combat system and jumps. Ubisoft also publicized that a new character by the name of Erika (AI Controlled) will guide the prince in his quests and combats.


here you have it folks, a pretty long list, isn’t it? November and December seems to be a very busy time for gamers, so remember to mark your calendars and write down your wish list. Happy gaming from the gaming team! .:Nvidia:.


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The Review

While playing Fable 2, I cannot help but feel slightly secluded. Whilst other gamers are rambling on about the reappearance of their favourite monsters or characters and the similarities between Fable 1 and Fable 2, I just continue playing, secluded from the “I played Fable 1 and understand what’s going on here in Fable 2 a lot more than you do!” club. When I first started playing Fable 2, it made sense for me to select a brand new female character. I based this decision on what I would rather be looking at for the next year, as RPGs tend to consume time and being trapped with an unlikeable character would be tiresome. Also, I choose female characters in most of my games – I am sure it is some sort of a disorder. From there, the story began. You begin as a plump little orphan roaming around the streets of Old Town in Albion, accompanied by your older sister, who pronounces your name as “Littow Spara” (little sparrow). The beginning eases you into the game, teaching you the basics of combat and ways to interact with things around you. This is when the game becomes fascinating too, as your reputation in Albion begins. The game seems to revolve around reputation. As the main character, you may choose to perform good deeds and stay pure in order to actually become liked and admired by the people of Albion or you can go on to kill innocent people, sacrifice villagers to the shadows, steal from their houses and generally be evil, allowing the people of Albion to both loathe and fear you. The story moulds itself to whichever path you select. I chose the evil option, as earning money is not as entertaining unless you are stealing it from shopping-tills and leading villagers into caves in order to slice them in half with a katana. The environment itself is immense and rich in detail. The innumerable caves, mountains, lakes, waterfalls and lush grassy fields are my favourite parts of this game; it is all open to exploration. Did I mention you get your own pooch? That’s right; your best friend is a doggy that can sniff out buried treasure, hence exploring the wilderness is not all a waste of time. In Fable 2, you can interact with any villager you meet and perform various actions upon which they form an opinion of you. In many cases, you can reach the ‘love’ level in the game, which then allows you to get married. However, if I had known that sex was involved in the game, I would not have chosen a female character. There is just something very peculiar about accompanying my character throughout the game, only to notice her getting ‘boinked’ by a character I was recently buying armour from. It would also give me a very dirty feeling; my

character will be remaining a virgin for as long as possible. Even so, the interactivity is the best I have seen in the game and the ‘beg for money’ feature might come in handy.

Customization in Fable 2 is far from bland; a wide variety of dyes is available and can be used to dye your hair and equipment. Hair can be cut and clothes and armour can be purchased in order to set up your character the way you desire. You also receive an array of outfits as you explore the regions and other characters will not hold back on criticizing your fashion sense. With all that said, Fable 2 is not a game without its flaws. First, the online play is not as brilliant as the developers made it out to be. Maybe I am just playing with the wrong people, but I was expecting something brushed with a little more ‘MMO’ paint.When I compare it to PC RPG games, I just cannot think of why I am accumulating my character stats or customising my clothing when I am the only one who will see it, unlike in PC RPG games where it is normally possible to boast your character. I appreciate that Fable 2 is not supposed to be an MMORPG, but it could at least have some sort of an option to show off your progress. The online co-op that Fable 2 has just does not cut it. The game comes with a number of mini-games which are almost as fun as watching paint dry; but it is how you earn money (the innocent way) in Fable 2. Despite the online play which is a little disappointing and some of the game crashes that are accompanied with the Xbox 360, the game itself has a lot to offer and will deliver hours of excitement, especially to the fans of RPGs and Fable 1.

Article: Dramamine Layout: Somebody-else


Star Control By Cambrion to a planet, the ship’s lander can be released onto the planet’s surface. It is used to collect minerals and can also fire a weapon to defend itself from interfering aliens. The heart of Star Control lies in its one-on-one space combat system. Whenever the player encounters an enemy, he or she can choose any ship to enter combat, including the flagship itself. There are twenty-five different ships to control, each with its own strengths and weaknesses. It can be best described as a very complex rock-paper-scissors situation, since no ship is perfect; some ships can overpower other ships and different combinations of ships can be used to take down much powerful ships. There is a feature called “Super Melee”, where two players can face each other, or play each other online using the new NetPlay feature. There are two versions of Star Control II released: One for DOS and the other for the Panasonic 3DO console.

If I had to choose my most favourite game from the 1990s, it would have to be Star Control II. It was created in 1992 by Toys for Bob. The game is an interesting mix of science fiction, action, adventure and one-onone space combat. It takes place in the year 2155. The player takes on the role of a human captain on an alien star ship bound for a mission to Earth, to discover what has happened over the past twenty years. Unfortunately, the captain discovers that the Ur-Quan Hierarchy of Battle Thralls have defeated the Alliance of Free Stars, resulting in the alliance of home planets trapped in a slave shield, including Earth. After talking to a space station captain and initiating in a battle against an Ilwrath Avenger, the captain begins to explore the universe and unite the alliances’ races once again to defeat the Ur-Quan. Ultimately they become free.

The game is split into different modes that mix well together and never feel repetitive. The first is the exploration mode, where the player controls the flagship in order to explore other planets and to fly to other star systems. If the player encounters another ship, the game switches to a dialog mode, where the screen shows a colourful animation of the character along with a speech, and a unique font identifying each race. Each alien race has its own set of unique personalities and feelings towards the war. The player can respond by selecting a list of given responses, some of which may bring new information, create a new ally or a new enemy. Whenever the player moves THESCENE  /  WAREZ-BB.ORG

Star Control II is now a free open source game that can be downloaded at The original developers, Toys for Bob, released the source code for the 3DO version in 2002. The game itself has been renamed to the original game’s subtitle, “The UrQuan Masters”, because Atari owns the rights to the name Star Control. However, the game itself remains the same; Atari only owns the name, while Toys for Bob owns the rights to everything else. This version contains several improvements to features such as the music and speech from the 3DO version. There are over twelve hours of spoken dialog included. The game can be run on Windows, Linux, Mac OS X, and there are other versions for the GP2X. There is also someone working on a version that uses Microsoft’s XNA Game Studio, which runs on both the PC and the Xbox 360 without any modifications. It concentrates mainly on the 4-player combat and comes with various combat challenges which can be fairly tough at times. It is still in its beta stages and can be found at HYPERLINK “http://” ; it is definitely worth checking out. The PC version also supports the Xbox 360 controller. Regardless of the legalities, many fans still refer to the game as Star Control II. On the 11th of April 2006, Toys for Bob announced that they would like to make a sequel to Star Control with the help of their current publisher, Activision. Since then, they have been accepting e-mails from fans supporting a new Star Control, which they will use to show that there is still a strong fan base and that it will sell well in today’s market. They have also asked their fans to take pictures of them with Star Control related items in the background, and send it to them. Toys for Bob will stick these photos on to a giant world map to show Activision that there are numerous Star Control fans out there from different parts of the world. Activision’s recently released products include “Tony Hawk’s Downhill Jam” and “Madagascar 2” for the Xbox 360/Wii/PS3. If it was not for the generous release of the Star Control II source, the fan base would not be as strong as it is today. It is rare for developers to release the source code for their best known games, and I would love to see more programmers do the same as time passes. With over twenty years of experience, Toys for Bob deserve a chance to revive the Star Control series. For more information, please check out petition.php.


“I feel the same way about disco as I do about herpes.”

Hunter S. Thompson and the birth of Gonzo journalism

“I hate to advocate drugs, alcohol, violence, or insanity to anyone, but they’ve always worked for me.” – Hunter S. Thompson. As a teenager, reading Hunter S. Thompson’s Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas and being sucked into a world of mind-bending drugs, alcohol, Gonzo journalism and bats was both fantastic and exciting. Hunter’s experiences with various psychedelics and mind-altering drugs were a delight to read, yet behind the entertaining descriptions of lizards, screeching manta-rays, swooping bats and the overwhelming paranoia that seems to take hold of acid freaks in a Las Vegas desert, there is a lot of very influential political and cultural statements. For those not in the loop, Hunter S. Thompson was born on July 18th, 1937 and was a renowned American Journalist and the author of several books. Not only this, he shaped an entire journalistic style known as “Gonzo journalism.” Thompson would write while under the influence of alcohol and/or various drugs and the outcome was such that you had more of a deeper insight into Thompson’s thoughts, lifestyle and current affairs than the topic he was pressing against. It was a style of writing that was fresh, never seen before and an astounding but barbaric concoction.

Hunter S. Thompson may have included an assortment of fictional elements to his work, or what would appear to be fiction; it is complicated to separate the two in Hunter’s case, his journalistic methods were peculiar for their time and his lifestyle was brutally bizarre. It is known that Hunter did write about a lot of things which were completely untrue, though he styled them in a way in which they were completely plausible. So with his blend of fact and fiction, outlandish behaviour and drug-addled writing, Thompson was able to shape a new style of journalism and become an American symbol. Everyone knows that Thompson left his legacy on America; he wielded a fairly brutal sword against American politics.

Like many of Thompson’s books, Hell’s Angels: The Strange and Terrible Saga of the Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs began as a magazine article which eventually spawned a book and propelled Thompson’s writing career. In preparation for the book, Hunter spent a lot of time among “The Hell’s Angels” (many of which met Hunter at his family home) and treads into a world which other more conventional journalists would never dare to enter. It was the personal relationship between Hunter and the motorcycle gangs that made the book successful, well composed and unlike most of Hell’s Angels articles at that point, factual.

Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas was a later novel written by Thompson which was eventually created into a film starring Johnny Depp. The novel has since become a very renowned and important part of American literature. The book held a lot of messages and speeches which describes the death of the “hippy era”, how proud Thompson was to be part of it and how blissful he was to have been alive during that time in history. Author: Dramamine Layout: Somebody-Else

33  General

Gonzo journalism itself is a very powerful and entertaining style of writing, something which Thompson initially sparked. The author would often value the style and fictional framework of a story over the genuine details and raw facts, but left the article gritty, sarcastic and profane. Normally, Gonzo writings are left unedited and in many of Hunter Thompson’s cases, scarcely legible and barely meeting its deadlines. A lot of people still admire the Gonzo style and Thompson today, such as Warren Ellis who shaped his comic-book character, Spider Jerusalem of Transmetropolitan as a Gonzo journalist and muckraker. There also exist a handful of newspapers which embraces Gonzo journalism. On the other hand, maybe sacrificing a few facts for entertaining novels was a good idea by this Thompson quote:

“If I’d written all the truth I knew for the past ten years, about 600 people - including me - would be rotting in prison cells from Rio to Seattle today. Absolute truth is a very rare and dangerous commodity in the context of professional journalism.” – Hunter S. Thompson Thompson passed away on February 20th 2005 as a result of a self-induced gunshot wound to the head. I cannot think of a better way of ending my short article than, RIP HST.

Religulous - Movie Review


efore I start, I want to apologize for not writing anything for a long time *cough*a year *cough*, but the reason behind this is my job. I have been working like crazy since April and that was the reason why I quit the staff after a year as a Super Moderator and also why I rarely visit the forum anymore. Nowadays it takes something very special for me to devote (weekend) time to write something and I believe that this movie is a good enough reason.

I watched this movie about a week ago at the Movie Theater on a Thursday afternoon, with about 8 other people in the whole theater and we all had a BLAST! Bill Maher’s documentary about Religion has become one of my favorite movies of all time. This is the first “BIG TIME” Hollywood movie about Atheism and Skeptics. It discussed all the mainstream religions; Christianity, Judaism and Islam, as well as devoting a little time to other smaller religions like Mormonism, Scientology, Satanism and Cantheism (a religion devoted to the worship of Marihuana).

body, so instead interviewed Ex-Mormons and it was fascinating how they explained in what their “church” believes and how it’s a “Social Suicide” to claim out loud that you are an Atheist or that you don’t believe in God.

The interviews featured in this movie are:

George Coyne, former director of the Vatican Observatory. Father Reginald Foster, Catholic priest, senior Vatican scholar, Pope's principal Latinist. Pastor Jeremiah Cummings, or Jerry Cummings, former member of Harold Melvin & the Blue Notes. Cummings is founder of Amazing Life World Outreach in North Carolina. Ken Ham, Young Earth creationist and founder of Answers in Genesis. José Luis de Jesús Miranda, founder of Growing in Grace International Ministry in Miami, Florida. Aki Nawaz, Muslim British rapper also known as Propa-Gandhi. Andrew Newberg, MD University of Pennsylvania research neuroscientist. Newberg discusses the process of imaging people's brains as they pray, meditate or speak in tongues. Rabbi Yisroel Dovid Weiss, spokesman for the anti-zionist organization Neturei Karta. Mark Pryor, junior U.S. Senator from Arkansas and a believer in Creationism. Steve Burg, representing Christian group Jews for Jesus (Burg himself is a former missionary with the organization), discussed believing in miracles.

“The movie was really well made and it was one of those movies in which the only thing that was bad about it was the moment when the credits rolled. I could have watched movies like this successively for a whole weekend.”

“The movie was directed by Larry Charles, director of “Borat the Movie” and a bunch of TV series.” Bill Maher wrote and starred in the documentary, going to several “Holy” places on earth, such as Jerusalem, The Vatican City, Salt Lake City, Mecca and Amsterdam. He also visits London, where he preaches Scientology to some people on the street and visits massive Churches, Mosques, Museums, etc. The coolest parts of the whole movie are, in my opinion, the interviews. Bill Maher had to change the name of the Movie (Religulous) to “A Spiritual Journey” as well as changing his name to get the interviews. Creationist Ken Ham of “Answers in Genesis”, who appeared in the movie, was critical of what he called Maher's "deception" to obtain the interview. In Salt Lake City, he couldn’t get an interview from any35  General

Based on reviews at Rotten Tomatoes, 71% of the Critics there would recommend this movie, and they are known to be really hard to impress. On the same website, Forrest Gump has a 72% and Transformers has 57% rating by comparison. So, if you are an Atheist or Agnostic, this is a MUST watch for you. If you happen to have been brought up into a particular religion or if you are religious by your own choice, this movie is also a good watch for yourself. If I had to rate this movies, I would say it is a 9 out of 10 and I can’t wait for a sequel! Everyone will be able to learn a lot from this Movie. As an Atheist (former Christian), I can say that this movie re-enforces my views about this world and its religions. Remember that we are all Atheists when it comes to most Gods, some people (like me) just add one more God to the list. ;) Enjoy the Movie!!!! -AZUPO


The beauty that is ‘Friendship’ Life is long... It’s all our own; but when we are with friends, ‘estranged’ will be a word never to be heard. Time is the number of moments we find, and it fills our lives with joy and happiness. But when we part from friends, time will no longer seem what it used to be. We never know what the future has in store, yet the thoughts of friendship and the bonds we share will bring us much needed solace. They say time heals; nevertheless the moment of estrangement will be hard to heal.

The shadows of life will grow longer Some days will be happy, some sad, Yet the friendship you’ve made will grow stronger As you think of the good times you’ve had. The days that are gone will leave memories, And memories are precious to keep; They bring solace to life like melodious music That charms you and lulls you to sleep. A sincere friend is a precious possession, Whose value increases with years; Suffering may come to assail you... Empathetic friends can allay all of your fears. Our days gather speed in their passing With multiplied ills that attend... Yet you’ll weather safely each hurdle When you feel the embrace of a loyal friend.

Layout by oddbrawl



36  General


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