[clug] Feedback...

Ian Munsie darkstarsword at gmail.com
Tue Dec 22 18:44:57 MST 2009

> It's a doddle to share this connection
> through an Ethernet connection or you could presumably do some Ad-hoc
> Wifi sharing (yay - three different wireles modes used!).

Hehe, I've done that (attack vectors++) when I was back in Armidale
and the only place I could get reliable 3G link was from my bedroom
window. Nokia N95 in the window with bluetooth link to EeePC 701SD on
the desk and from there an Ad-hoc WiFi link providing access to me
anywhere in the house.

Related to that, can anyone provide some references on what security
considerations are in 3G data connections? I've often wondered which
wireless link in the chain is the weakest, and how much having the
same data flowing over multiple wireless links with different
encryptions could help an attacker to break any of those encryptions.

> * McInternet:
> When I was a Telstra customer, said customers (Any service IIRC, even
> landline only) could get easy access and relatively better rates
> connecting to McDonalds WiFi hotspots and have their Telstra bills
> charged for it. I have paid M7 tolls sitting in the McCarpak on the
> way to Queensland - very convenient. I think if you're a BigPond
> customer it's even cheaper and/or easier. I don't see why they
> wouldn't still be offering this service.

The WiFi that McDonalds provides has changed sometime over the last
year, so I don't think that this applies any more. Anyone can now
access it for free after going through a quick agree to T&C page and I
saw no mention of Telstra any more.

I can add to this discussion that Optus provides an internet
addressable IP to their mobile broadband customers (from reading on
whirlpool when I was researching this stuff back in the day I gather
that Vodafone does not unless you call their customer service and
convince them to enable an alternative APN for your account).

Optus does not charge extra for roaming onto their slower GPRS link
(though of course roaming onto it will be *much* slower - slower than
even dialup, so if you're in a good coverage area it is worth
disabling the modem automatically roaming). AFAIK they do not have
roaming agreements with other carriers.

Optus provides a 'usage meter' to help you track your usage, but it
has been plagued with problems such as not updating in real time
(sometimes hours, days or even in one case a whole week behind
reality), and misreporting usage in one case. I suspect up to three
servers are in use to account traffic, display the usage meter and
actually bill the customer, and their traffic accounting server
doesn't have enough grunt to keep up with the traffic in times of high
use. In one case some of my usage was on the wrong month in the bill
(right month in the usage meter), so I suspect that the billing system
generated my bill before their traffic accounting server could catch
up and as such I was incorrectly charged a large amount of excess
usage in the next month. In every case their customer service was able
to wave any excess charges, but the point is I shouldn't have to go
through that process in the first place.

I seem to remember reading that some of the other providers don't even
provide a usage meter, so it is up to you to monitor your own usage or
guess how much quota is remaining.

Virgin is Optus's budget brand, using the same network, etc. The only
difference in Optus and Virgin's T&C was an extra statement in
Virgin's that they may cap p2p traffic. Other than they they read


On the day *I* go to work for Microsoft, faint oinking sounds will be
heard from far overhead, the moon will not merely turn blue but
develop polkadots, and hell will freeze over so solid the brimstone
will go superconductive.
     -- Eric S. Raymond, 2005
Please avoid sending me Word or PowerPoint attachments.
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