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Linux Journal: Access the Web Anywhere

Dec 13, 2000, 22:20 (4 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Anton Chuvakin)

"'Imagine being able to access the Internet from anywhere', says the marketing message of a certain big company. They imply that you have to carry a laptop with a cellular modem, or maybe even a nice new web-enabled cell-phone with a fancy 1.5 inch black and white screen (enough to really get excited about a stock quote). Maybe not. What if on every corner, where you now see a pay phone, you could see an inconspicuous terminal for Web access. Feel like checking your e-mail? Just stop at a gas station and do it while filling up. Need to look at movie schedule? Pull over and look up the nearest movie theater web page. Cool, eh? Can you think about a couple of thousand other ways to use Internet access from anywhere you happen to be?"

"Linux is an ideal candidate to make this scenario not only possible but cheap, too. For under $200, one can setup an inexpensive box that runs Linux and allows only web access. The maintainence cost of such a machine will be low, especially if booting off the CD-ROM drive is used and reliable remote administrations tools are deployed."

"The setup of such a system presents a serious challenge. The Internet terminal should be easy to use, stable, easy to maintain (ideally, no maintainence should ever be required) and secure (both to prevent break-ins and the potential to attack other systems). In all described criteria, Linux possesses definite advantages over Windows, which can hardly be made secured enough and is never stable."

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