GNU/Linux Involved in Something Puzzling

  • A break-in occurred at an office for a candidate in an election-campaign – boring
  • GNU/Linux was installed on a PC in the office as vandalism – Hmmmm…
  • Rocks were thrown through the window “to hide the break-in” – Hmmmm…
  • The hard drive had been backed up hours before – convenient…
  • The candidate was under investigation for campaigning irregularities in 2010 – Hmmm…

I really don’t know what it all means but installing GNU/Linux does take a few minutes and vandals are usually in a bit of a hurry. Why install GNU/Linux instead of just erasing the hard drive or deleting files and erasing the hard drive? Installing GNU/Linux certainly is not guaranteed to destroy data. A backup hours before? That’s either good IT or a sign that someone knew the machine was going to be messed up. I certainly don’t see how throwing rocks through windows covers anything up. It draws attention at least. Is it a message about that other OS and GNU/Linux? Breaking windows and all… Is it a message that GNU/Linux is the tool of vandals? It’s a confusing message. It’s a very strange way to disrupt an election-campaign.

I just don’t get it.

Congressman's S.I. Campaign Office Vandalized.

About Robert Pogson

I am a retired teacher in Canada. I taught in the subject areas where I have worked for almost forty years: maths, physics, chemistry and computers. I love hunting, fishing, picking berries and mushrooms, too.
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10 Responses to GNU/Linux Involved in Something Puzzling

  1. It turned out that a staffer “accidentally” installed GNU/Linux. I still don’t know how that’s possible. Most people would get a clue when their PC asks questions like “What is the root password?” or “Do you want to install to the whole disc or just a partition?”

  2. Mongrol says:

    “Mongrol even formatting over EXT4 not all the data will be destroyed. Just like installing windows over neither zeros the drive.”

    Do you need slides and handout notes to explain a joke??

    “There is no such thing as a Windows disk to kiss good by to all you data properly. I would have suspected that anyone running secure systems would have DBAN laying around.”

    For crying out loud. If you want to destroy the data – just destroy the media. In the time it took to install this copy of Linux, the machine would be in bits and the disk would be well on the way to being slag or metal confetti.

    @Pogson

    “GNU/Linux was installed on a PC in the office as vandalism – Hmmmm…”

    Not your usual position on these things. But refreshingly honest.

  3. Dyl wrote, “It’s probably safe to rule out Gentoo”.

    Agreed. Gentoo builds stuff to install… It works but is probably the slowest of any means of installation except delivering the bits by carrier pigeon.

  4. Dyl says:

    >Really I would like to know what Distribution.
    It’s probably safe to rule out Gentoo. Unless the vandal was there all night.

    (not dissing gentoo, it’s my metadistro of choice)

  5. oiaohm wrote, “There is no such thing as a Windows disk to kiss good by to all you data properly”

    In the old days, I would approximate that action by deleting all data-files and then filling up the disc and deleting that file. There are likely to be fragments left but it’s a lot better than nothing. Experts can still recover data from the noise at the edge of tracks but the casual user will not be able to get the data back. DBAN and others do multiple writes to improve on this and can do the whole disc, not just the data areas.

    I still don’t know how anyone could accidentally install GNU/Linux unless it was something like KNOPPIX which has a disc image on the CD or an unattended installation CD. It’s mighty few clicks to do a straight copy job and one can make an installation CD that asks no questions. That would be a peculiar item to have in an M$-shop.

  6. oiaohm says:

    Mongrol even formatting over EXT4 not all the data will be destroyed. Just like installing windows over neither zeros the drive.

    Mongrol DBAN that is a Linux. Is truly the data all destroyed.

    There is no such thing as a Windows disk to kiss good by to all you data properly. I would have suspected that anyone running secure systems would have DBAN laying around.

    There have been a few cases of fools altering DBAN to be auto run without prompt for mass wipe then miss placing a DBAN disc configured like that and it was not clearly labelled. Best policy never do that to DBAN, Second best policy LABEL it clearly and have counted destruction of them at end, Fools policy don’t do either so 1 or more rouge disc gets to exist with no clear markings and its a matter of time until a machine goes by by due to human.

    So far they have not said what version Linux.

  7. I don’t know. It turned out that a staffer claims to have accidentally installed GNU/Linux. I know installation is pretty easy but I had no idea it was that easy. I guess auto-run ran away with things or the guy just, “clicked through”. 😉

  8. Mongrol says:

    “Installing GNU/Linux certainly is not guaranteed to destroy data.”

    It depends. Was it formatted to EXT4?

  9. dougman says:

    As with all politics, there is the story, then there is the REAL story.

  10. oiaohm says:

    Really I would like to know what Distribution.

    It would be interesting to know what is a vandals preference.

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