About the current state of the Internet and the temporary loss of Cow Of Doom's e2 node tracker:
In recent weeks the code red worm and its second version have been spreading horribly amongst cable modem users in particular. The worm only affects Microsoft IIS web servers. It propagates over port 80 (http), naturally. Internet service providers have been in a bind as to how to fix the problem, and AT&T/MediaOne has decided on a rather brute-force temporary solution. A few days they decided to block all incoming port 80 connections to all their customers.
In effect this prevents any more IIS servers from getting infected and cuts down on gook traffic beng thrown into the system. It also prevents ALL personal web servers from being accessed by the outside world. Personally I run a LinuxPPC/Apache server at http://hongpong.dyndns.org and http://www.hongpong.com. I'm pretty ticked at them right now, because it isn't my fault that my co-users are irresponsible and ignorant about patching their systems, and Microsoft isn't putting out secure software.
Also a couple days ago, I noticed that I couldn't visit Cow Of Doom's invaluable e2 node tracker at http://www.cowofdoom.com/cgi-bin/e2info/ . I attributed this to random burps of the system, but right after coming from slashdot, where I ranted about my predicament, I noticed in the catbox someone was unable to reach the tracker. I had a small epiphany and ran a nslookup, and sure enough, the cow of doom domain is under foo.ne.mediaone.net. I recalled the server also has a http-secure port active, and I tried that. Sure works! It isn't configured right, and gives out bad certificates or something, but you can track your nodes. So here's the address to track your nodes:
Here's a bit I posted on slashdot: A couple days ago AT&T (formerly MediaOne) blocked port 80 here in Mpls./St. Paul. I instant messaged with a tech guy last night and he was less than friendly about it, considering how I was in such a good mood. Also, somewhere along the line they fsck'ed up and blocked http://www.roadrunner.com from me. Some URL port filtering message came up, which wasn't cool because I couldn't remember the tech support email address. Here's some choice transcripts:
Tech: What sort of problems are you having?
Me: well, i'm running a Linux/Apache server which I know is immune... and I read on slashdot that you guys blocked off all port 80 incoming connections, so my server can't be reached by anyone, which annoys me and I'm wondering if there's any way to get things open again. i was just wondering if i could get unblocked.
tech: At this time AT&T will continue to block the port until they can find a more permanent solution to the problem.
Me: also, you should know that a lot of official mediaone sites are blocked as well
Tech: Which ones?
Me: example: www.roadrunner.com and its related sub-domains
Tech: I will escalate the issue about blocking the sites. But as for the port blocking, we cannot unblock them as of now.
Me: ugh... there's nothing in my User Agreement about port blocking... i'd suspect someone in a worse mood than me would get in your face about that
Tech: Try looking at Section 10.9.
I didn't have the user agreement on hand so I gave up. Just now I dug it out and I feel misled.
Me: oh darn
So I dug out this 10.9 thing which he speaks of.
Section 10.9: You agree that AT&T and ServiceCo shall have the right to take any action that either AT&T Broadband or ServiceCo deems appropriate to protect the Road Runner service, its facilities and equipment.
Frankly blocking my server isn't an action which protects the Road Runner facilities, service or equipment. In fact since my connection is a 2-way modem, it is harming the service. I understand the problems they are having, but a blanket blocking isn't the way to go on this. I have taken all appropriate security measures on my web server, and my service is being penalized by other users' failure to do so.
All in all, what a bunch of garbage. I am not happy about this. I guess tomorrow I will figure out some kind of workaround so people can see my site has not shut down permanently.