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LISA '03: 17th Large Installation Systems Administration Conference, October 26-31, 2003, San Diego, CA
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Register Now! Technical Sessions: Wednesday, October 29 | Thursday, October 30 | Friday, October 31 | All in one file

Friday, October 31, 2003   Back to top
9:00 a.m.–10:30 a.m.
California Room

Configuration Management: Tools and Techniques
Session Chair: Michael Gilfix, IBM

STRIDER: A Black-box, State-based Approach to Change and Configuration Management and Support
Yi-Min Wang, Chad Verbowski, John Dunagan, Yu Chen, Helen J. Wang, Chun Yuan, and Zheng Zhang, Microsoft Research

CDSS: Secure Distribution of Software Installation Media Images in a Heterogeneous Environment
Ted Cabeen, Impulse Internet Services; Job Bogan, Consultant

Virtual Appliances for Deploying and Maintaining Software
Constantine Sapuntzakis, David Brumley, Ramesh Chandra, Nickolai Zeldovich, Jim Chow, Monica S. Lam, and Mendel Rosenblum, Stanford University

San Diego Room

Through the Lens Geekly: How Sysadmins Are Portrayed in Pop Culture
Speaker: David N. Blank-Edelman, Northeastern University
Session Chair: Pat Wilson, University of California, San Diego

People outside our profession think they know who we are and what we do for a living. They've formed assumptions about us and how we work even before they've met us, which in turn color their perceptions and shape their interactions with us.

To be effective we need to understand this context and its origins. A good portion of it comes from popular culture: movies, television, and other mass media. Movie clips and other source material will entertain you, and more important, give you new insight into just what ways much of the world views our profession.

Golden West Room

How to Get Your Papers Accepted at LISA (PDF)
(Combined with the concurrent Guru-Is-In Session)

Speakers: Tom Limoncelli, Lumeta Corporation,
Adam Moskowitz, Menlo Computing
Session Chair: Lee Damon, University of Washington

This presentation will help you write a successful proposal for a LISA paper. We'll help you identify good paper topics, teach you how to present your ideas, and explain the submission process so there will be no surprises. We will present time-saving techniques and other advice that we've learned from being authors as well as from sitting on the program committee itself. We'll also discuss the many pitfalls that potential authors can fall into before the first word is ever written.

View presentation as QuickTime video


See the "INVITED TALKS 2" session scheduled at this time.

10:30 a.m.–11:00 a.m.   Break (Grand Foyer)
11:00 a.m.–12:30 p.m.
California Room

Configuration Management: Analysis and Theory
Session Chair: Michael Gilfix, IBM

Generating Configuration Files: The Director's Cut
Jon Finke, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Preventing Wheel Reinvention: The psgconf System Configuration Framework
Mark D. Roth, University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign

SmartFrog Meets LCFG: Autonomous Reconfiguration with Central Policy Control
Paul Anderson, University of Edinburgh; Patrick Goldsack, HP Research Laboratories; Jim Paterson, University of Edinburgh

San Diego Room

Security Lessons from "Best in Class" Organizations
Speaker: Gene Kim, Tripwire, Inc.
Session Chair: Deeann Mikula, Consultant

A few organizations have somehow figured out how to get Operations, Security, Audit, and Management to work together to meet common objectives, resulting in the highest service levels (e.g., lowest MTBF), earliest integration of security into the ops lifecycle, and the highest spans of controls (best automation allows assigning more servers per sysadmin). What makes these "best in class" organizations so different from the rest of the herd, quantitatively, qualitatively, and behaviorally?

In this talk, I will present some of my research results and their surprising conclusions. I'll also talk about the passions I've developed as a result of this work, including repeatable and verifiable processes and process improvement.

Golden West Room

What Washington Still Doesn't Get
Speaker: Declan McCullagh, CNET
Session Chair: Esther Filderman, The OpenAFS Project

A realistic firsthand view of today's legislative attempts to outlaw unsolicited email, ban piracy, restrict politically unpopular technology, and generally make the Internet a much less interesting place.

Declan McCullagh is a longtime Washington denizen who has been running UNIX on the desktop since 1988 and maintains a Red Hat server for Politech, his technology and politics mailing list. For his day job as a correspondent for CNET, he chronicles how Congress, the White House, and the judiciary wrestle with technology—and rarely end up on top.

Royal Palm Salon 1/2

Professional Growth and Development
David Parter, University of Wisconsin, Madison

David has been a system administrator at the University of Wisconsin Computer Science Department since 1991, serving as Associate Director of the Computer Systems Lab since 1995. David has been the senior system administrator, guiding a staff of 8 full-time sysadmins and supervising up to 12 student sysadmins at a time. His experiences in this capacity include working with other groups on campus; providing technical leadership to the group; managing the budget; dealing with vendors; dealing with faculty; and training students. As a consultant, he has dealt with a variety of technical and management challenges. He has sat on the SAGE executive committee since December 1999, serving as SAGE President in 2001-2002.

12:30 p.m.–2:00 p.m.   Lunch (on your own)
2:00 p.m.–3:30 p.m.
California Room

Network Administration
Session Chair: David Williamson, Certainty Solutions

Distributed Tarpitting: Impeding Spam Across Multiple Servers
Tim Hunter, Paul Terry, and Alan Judge,

Using Service Grammar to Diagnose BGP Configuration Errors
Xiaohu Qie, Princeton University; Sanjai Narain, Telcordia Technologies

Splat: A Network Switch/Port Configuration Management Tool
Cary Abrahamson, Michael Blodgett, Adam Kunen, Nathan Mueller, and David Parter, University of Wisconsin, Madison

San Diego Room

Stick, Rudder, and Keyboard: How Flying My Airplane Makes Me a Better Sysadmin
Speaker: Ross Oliver, Tech Mavens, Inc.
Session Chair: David Blank-Edelman, Northeastern University

The airport may seem a long way from the machine room, but sysadmins can still benefit from aviators. Ross Oliver, a licensed pilot and 15-year sysadmin veteran, will describe how his sysadmin abilities have been enhanced by aviation skills and techniques, and how you can apply them without actually taking to the air.

Golden West Room

Security Without Firewalls
Speaker: Abe Singer, San Diego Supercomputer Center
Session Chair: Alva Couch, Tufts University

SDSC does not use firewalls, yet we have managed to go almost 4 years without an intrusion.

Our success raises to the issue that there are no good empirical data to show us which protection methods are effective and which are not. SDSC's approach defies some common beliefs, but we suggest that our approach may be more successful.

This talk will touch on our experiences, our threat/risk model, our implementation, some of the mistakes we've made, and why we need better data for effective risk quantification and analysis.

Town & Country Room

Chair: David Hoffman, Stanford University

Short, pithy, and fun, Work-in-Progress reports introduce interesting new or ongoing work. If you have work you would like to share or a cool idea that's not quite ready for publication, send a one- or two-paragraph summary to We are particularly interested in presenting students' work. A schedule of presentations will be posted at the conference, and the speakers will be notified in advance. Work-in-Progress reports are five-minute presentations; the time limit will be strictly enforced.

3:30 p.m.–4:00 p.m.   Break (Grand Foyer)
4:00 p.m.–5:30 p.m.
The LISA Game Show (Town & Country Room)

Closing out this year's conference, the LISA Game Show will once again pit attendees against each other in a test of technical knowledge and cultural trivia. Host Rob Kolstad and sidekick Dan Klein will provide the questions and color commentary for this always memorable event.

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Last changed: 19 Nov. 2003 aw