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Fri, Mar 30, 2018 10:23 pm

Cloudmark CSI IP Reputation Remediation

I manage an email server that uses an Atlantic Broadband SMTP server as a smart host. I maintain a mailing list on the server that currently has about 1,300 email addresses. Each month someone sends a monthly newsletter to the email addresses in that list; the people associated with those addresses are all members of a retirees organization and have all indicated they wish to receive that organization's newsletter. Usually, the newsletter is transmitted without problems, but occasionally I will find that email transmitted from the server is silently discarded with no bounced emai indicating why that is occurring. Though that doesn't occur often, when it occurs, it usually occurs when the newsletter is sent. When the problem occurs, as it did yesterday, I have to request that the IP address of my server be unblocked. Initially, I would call the ISP's phone support number, i.e, an Atlantic Broadband support number, but they would in turn have to contact their email service provider, since the email service they provide is outsourced to Echo Labs as I found from examining email headers - see Email sent via an Atlantic Broadband SMTP server not being delivered. But I found that I could get the block removed more quickly if I submitted a request through Cloudmark, an anti-spam company co-founded by Vipul Ved Prakash and Napster's co-founder Jordan Ritter, which provides an anti-spam service used by Echo Labs.

[ More Info ]

[/network/email/spam/blocklists] permanent link

Sat, Mar 24, 2018 10:46 pm

Deleting old Windows backups with wbadmin

I had set up the built-in Windows 7 backup utility to run on my mother-in-law's Windows 10 PC to back up the computer's internal hard disk drive (HDD) to an external USB drive. She asked me to verify that the backup was still functioning, so I checked the status of the backup process on her Windows 10 (version 1709) system using the wbadmin command by opening a command prompt window with administrator access to run the wbadmin get versions command to obtain a list of all the backups. I found that the last backup had occurred on December 31, 2017.

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[/os/windows/commands] permanent link

Fri, Mar 23, 2018 11:05 pm

DNS - Standard Query Response Refused

While filtering on Domain Name System (DNS) queries in the Wireshark packet capture tool with a filter of udp.port==53 on a MacBook Pro laptop running OS X El Capitan (10.11.6), I saw a lot of "Stanard query response refused" replies in the "Info" field for responses from the DNS server. When I expanded the "flags" section of the DNS response for those replies from the DNS server, I saw "Reply code: Refused (5)" for some IP address lookups, though other DNS queries were being answered with an IP address.

[ More Info ]

[/network/dns] permanent link

Thu, Mar 01, 2018 10:44 pm

Determining the the elapsed time between two timestamps in Excel

If you have an Excel workbook containing two cells that contain a date and time and you want to know the time difference between them in days and hours, you can subtract one from the other and get the elapsed time between the two timestamps in days and hours by using a custom date and time format for the cell that will hold the results. E.g., suppose I have a spreadsheet with the following timestamps in columns A and B:

  A B C
1 Start Time End Time Elapsed Time
2 1/1/18 0:01 3/1/18 15:03  
3 2/6/18 15:18 2/7/18 18:07  
4 3/1/18 7:55 3/1/18 13:01  

The cells containing the date and time have the custom format m/d/yy h:mm.

[ More Info ]

[/software/office/excel] permanent link

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