Date: Thu, 15 Jun 95 17:24:16 PDT
From: Peter Langston <psl>
Subject: finger firstname.lastname@example.org
[Thanks to the following chain of correspondents
Dennis Gentry <Dennis_Gentry@NeXT.COM>
Mark Dadgar <Mark_Dadgar>
for suggesting fingering email@example.com...
with the following results... -psl]
% finger firstname.lastname@example.org
Retrieving BARRNET Trouble Ticket 2678
Ticket Number: 2678 Ticket Status: closed
Ticket Type: unplanned Ticket Source: other
Ticket Scope: 1site Site/Line: barrnet
Ticket Owner: cjw Problem Fixer: everyone
Telco Number: cscdi35420
Ticket Opened: 06/05/95 17:08 Problem Started: 05/17/95 00:00
Closed: 06/13/95 14:53 Ended: 06/13/95 14:55
Close Code: other
It has been reported that BBN Planet Western Region is
out of Smarties. Staff moral is at an all time low. Most
local sources seem to be out of stock at this time. The
situation could get critical if a new supply is not found.
Note: 1 BARRNET Systems Group indicates that this issue needs to be
06/05/95 17:36 escalated to BARRNET Field service.
tdias The current BARRNET Field Service on-call person has been
paged with the following message,
"BARRNET ticket 2678 - Smarties Situation Critical Please
Note: 2 Cathy is obviously experiencing severe problems due to a
06/05/95 17:39 glucose shortage as her spelling on the ticket open is
jhickey notably atrocious.
It is clear this Smarties shortage needs to be addressed at
the highest levels as quickly as possible.
Note: 3 This issue started on the 17th of May and was only reported
06/05/95 18:19 on the 5th of June?
tdias CJW, should this issue be escalated to IE or to jrugo?
As it is a priority 4 and the the problem was only reported
on the 5th of June the NOC can only assume that this issue
isn't too urgent. CJW, how's about we ship out a case of
Smarties the next time iserver.tc.barrnet.net needs to be
Regards - Tony Dias - BARRNET ops
Note: 4 Tony, the problem was only just brought to my attention this
06/05/95 18:29 afternoon. No one realized the consequences until it was
cjw too late. Being new to the ticket system, I chose priority
4 because this is an internal (non customer) problem.
Perhaps I should upgrade it to a higher priority. Note that
the Ismaint group is shipping me a new iserver with a due
date of Wednesday at 10:30am. Could relief be in sight?
Thanks for your support in this most trying of times
Note: 5 Jeff Osborne of BARRNET Field service reponds that although
06/05/95 20:19 Field Service provides many services, trying to "score" or
tdias i.e. dealing is not one of them.
BBN Planet's Ismaint group responds that the new Iserver is
already hermetically sealed and can not be touched by anyone
here until the customer receives it (so that we can say,
"Hey it worked when it left here." So we won't be able to
include it with the new iserver.
Note: 6 WR Folks,
06/06/95 07:11 Have you tried Skittles as a substitute to Smarties as a
tschlatter workaround until the Smarties supply problem can be
Note: 7 Skittles just won't do. We have brought in chocolate dipped
06/06/95 10:07 strawberries as a substitute and that seems to be a good
cjw interim solution, but they're going fast. We are hoping
that one of the many staff members searching the Bay Area
will come up with a new supplier. It is disappointing that
FS will not assist since it is clear that some of them have
been seen with their hands in the Smarties orb getting their
fix. Some folks just won't admit their addiction publicly.
Thanks for your continuing support ---Cathy
Note: 8 The lack of Smarties in the WR, has brought Planet HQ to
06/06/95 15:03 the very painful realization that there are no chocolate
jbehrle dipped strawberries in the fridge, on the east coast. Like
a domino effect morale at HQ has started to crumble, if
it continues at this feverish pace the situation could
become critical! Rumor has it that Bill Gates is closely
eyeing the situation, in hopes that Planet executive mgmt
will approach him and turn Planet's WR into the MicroSloth
Network running only NetBEUI, and DOS based apps.
Note: 9 I think the all the regions can agree that if a supplier is
06/06/95 15:49 found, equal portions should be guaranteed for each and
kjc every region for symmetric routing. The integrity of the
chocolate supply here has degraded to the point where the
overall sucrose input has fallen drastically. Sugar packets
are being dropped left and right. This definitely calls for
Note: 10 Due to the crisis forming at HQ, I did some investigation.
06/06/95 16:01 It appears that it is not possible for Mackenzies to ship
cjw chocolate covered strawberries due to their perishable
nature. The only option would be for the next WR person
to venture to HQ to act as a courier. This is not a a
guarantee, however, because 5 hours on a plane could make
them not to tasty. Mackenzies has other chocolate taste
delights that might serve as a substitute...
Note: 11 Called and Spoke to Donna at the BJ's Wholesale Club in
06/06/95 17:30 Medford, MA. Asked Donna if they have any Smarties in stock
jbehrle and she confirmed that they carry them in "5 Pound Value
Packs". Asked Donna how many Smarties come in the "5 Pound
Value Pack", she reports that she doesn't know. Requested
that she open the bag up and count them, as the future of
"the PlaNET" may depend on it, Donna hung up.
Note: 12 Have secured 3 - "5 Pound Value Packs" of Smarties that will
06/06/95 18:30 be packaged up and sent to the WR in hopes of improving
jbehrle staff morale. Current ETA is Thursday, 8 June at the latest.
06/07 09:47 PST:
--- ETA is currently Friday, 9 June 1995 ---
Note: 13 In repeated attempts to transmit Smartie packets via a Cisco
06/06/95 22:28 router, the packets are (quite literality) dropped on the
jbehrle floor without even a hint of an error. Suspect there is a
bug in Cisco's IOS 10.2(6.1), preventing Smartie packets
from be passed through the router. I believe a ticket
needs to be opened with Cisco on this issue.
Note: 14 Regis Donovan of the Systems & Network Services Dept at
06/07/95 07:31 FTP Software, Inc. in N. Andover, MA reports that she has
jbehrle duplicated the Cisco bug on 10.2(1) and several versions of
10.0, she suspects this problem may be common to all
versions of IOS. After locating a 2.15 lb "orb of Smarties"
in the FTP Development Dept, Regis estimates that 3 "5 pound
value packs" would contain somewhere on the order of 1256
standard Smartie packets, and ~18,837 individual Smarties
which is approx the # of Internet nets in use in late 1993.
Note: 15 Barbara Bellissimo from BBN Planet WR reports that it
06/07/95 09:47 appears that they are out of immediate danager as a large
jbehrle quantity of Smarties appeared on her chair this morning.
3 - "5 Pound Value Packs" will be shipped out of HQ this
afternoon via FedEx Economy Service (air bill number will
following for tracking purposes). It was decided that due
to the appearant Cisco bug, and multiple failed attempts
to use carrier pigeons (per RFC 1149). FedEx would be the
next logical step.
Note: 16 FedEx Air Bill 272-9533-414 applies, this can be tracked via
06/07/95 14:40 the Web: http://www.fedex.com/cgi-bin/track_it
By sending email to "email@example.com" with
"airbill 272-9533-414" in the body of the message.
It was picked up from HQ at 17:20 EST 06/07.
Note: 17 Have begun to use a variety of fresh cannolis (riccota,
06/07/95 14:46 vanilla and chocolate) as a substitute for chocolate covered
tschlatter strawberries in the Planet HQ NOC. We are considering
using these as a permanent replacement for the strawberries
as we have found a reliable year-round supplier and have
not been able to do so for the strawberries, and they
appear to be having the desired effect on corporate morale,
but are still waiting to evaluate the use of Mackenzies
chocolate covered strawberries before making a decision.
Note: 18 Tony Li of CISCO thanks us for the notification of the
06/07/95 14:58 problem with their software and has requested our assistance
kjc in isolating this problem. He has alerted their staff to
watch for supplies and are looking to their telecommuter
staff for hope, moving on to field support if that fails.
He has filed bugid CSCdi35420 on this problem and requests
that we enable "debug ip s" and send them the output. He
would also like a copy of the appropriate packet generator
software for further help. Note attached to ticket.
Note: 19 Three 5 pound bags (one Godzillagram) of 15-bite packets
06/07/95 15:24 have arrived at their first hop enroute to the Western
kjc Region. They are in a wait state, holding at Medford, MA.
Further updates as they arrive. Once the traceroute is
complete, we'll have a better idea of whether this is a
routing issue or a saturation/starvation (i.e. feast or
famine) problem. The next step will be a determination of
how to be pro-active here, and prevent this issue from
Note: 20 Anke Dosedal of cisco systems believes that the bug is a
06/07/95 15:57 serious problem. He is submitting a purchase req. for
cjw at least one "orb" of Smarties for their lab in order to
try to reproduce this bug. I replied offering to send them
a value pack in an effort to facilitate the debugging effort
Note: 21 I was just reminded that Anke is not a HIM, but a HER.
06/07/95 17:00 Terribly sorry Anke! --- Cathy
Note: 22 Anke (cisco) replies that one orb probably won't be
06/08/95 06:31 sufficient for the testing purposes and believes the testing
kjc lab might need two. Jim Helvie heartily welcomes input from
us to help reproduce the problem and further details that
the quantity of Smarties orbs required will of course depend
upon the difficulty of debugging & then testing the fix.
For a bug that may affect the future of "the PlaNET" cisco
will want to do a lot of testing.
Note: 23 The Godzillagram of Smarties was picked up from Medford, MA
06/08/95 08:32 at 17:20 on 06/07/95.
Route thus far:
o Left Origin Location MEDFORD MA 06/07 20:26
o Pickup Exception MEDFORD MA 06/07 17:20
Note: 24 Bud Osterberg formarly of Quorum, now at Oracle sends this
06/08/95 12:06 note, "Well, I just wanted you to know that I can sympathize
cjw with your current situation. I recall the agonizing days
when our coffee machine was in the ICU. Just keep your
spirits up, sugar is on the way! -- bud
Note: 25 Jim Lewinson of ISI suggests that the problem may be some
06/08/95 12:59 sort of hardware problem, perhaps involving the cable or
cjw transciever manufacturer.
Has this been investigated as a possibility?
Note: 26 The cables were in use before attempting to pass Smarties,
06/08/95 13:07 working normally. Post-testing period, cables continue to
kjc work flawlessly (after they were wiped off). I'd be
inclined to believe this is a protocol issue rather than a
problem with the hardware.
Note: 27 The 3 - "5 Pound Value Packs" of Smarties have "Left Hub
06/08/95 16:03 INDIANAPOLIS IN" 3 times now:
jbehrle o Package Left Hub INDIANAPOLIS IN 06/08 14:52
o Package Left Hub INDIANAPOLIS IN 06/08 15:10
o Package Left Hub INDIANAPOLIS IN 06/08 14:36
Suspect we've hit a routing loop, or were seeing packet
Note: 28 Concerned about a routing loop, or packet fragmentation, I
06/08/95 16:35 called "1-800-Go-FedEx" and spoke to Connie. Connie assured
jbehrle me that the packet "is still in one piece", and that it was
probably handled by three different people in Indianapolis
and scanned by each of them. Am still a bit suspicious of a
possible routing-loop, but the NOC will continue to monitor.
Note: 29 Lisa DeBruine a College of Literature, Science, and the Arts
06/08/95 20:01 Student at the University of Michigan reports that in her
jbehrle experiences "chocolate covered strawberries are a better
substitute for Smarties than Smarties themselves", but she
agrees that they are "not as cost-effective". I suspect she
has never attempted to use carrier pigeons to transport 15lb
of Smartie packets, which I should point out is not only
expensive, but real messy too. X.500 at Umich points out tha
Lisa enjoys Kool-Aid "finger Lisa.M.De.Bruine@umich.edu".
Note: 30 Nora Lundin from BBN WR admits that during the heat of the
06/08/95 23:28 crisis she stumbled upon and purchased mini Sweet Tarts,
jbehrle disguised as Smarties (Same twisty wrapper, same shape and
size as Smarties). She reports that "To my surprise, while
they only fooled people for a moment, they seemed to be an
adequate substitute, and a few have even commented that the
flavor was better than Smarties'". Nora points out the it
is not clear if mini Sweet Tarts will ever permanently
replace Smarties, but they might do in a pinch...
Note: 31 Elizabeth Kaufman of BBN Planet SP offers to help in any way
06/09/95 08:08 she can. She has extended the support of the entire SP
dricci development team. She warns that SP is not currently
"Smarties-capable;" and reports that some have even claimed
it has no smarts at all. They are working on a custom
Smarties-proxy, to be released Q1, Elizabeth expect to
announce "which fiscal year sometime in the next 10 weeks".
The proxy is expected to be fully TIS-compatible (so it
melts in your mouth, not in your Gauntlet).
Note: 32 The 3 - "5 Pound Value Packs" of Smarties appear to have
06/09/95 09:47 cleared the routing-loop in INDIANAPOLIS, and have reached
jbehrle FedEx's MENLO PARK Hub. We have high confidence that
successful deliverey is imminent!
Note: 33 It appears that we may have hit another routing loop:
06/09/95 10:06 o Package on Van MENLO PARK CA 06/09 08:19
jbehrle o Package on Van MENLO PARK CA 06/09 06:48
Note: 34 The 3 - "5 Pound Value Packs" of Smarties have successfully
06/09/95 11:04 arrived in the WR. Witnessed the rejoicing in the WR NOC
jbehrle via a BBN PicWin IP video conference!!!
The "FedEx Airbill Tracking Information" is still reporting:
"Package has not been Delivered!"???
Note: 35 This issue has demonstrated that the NOC at HQ does not have
06/09/95 11:18 adequate tools in place to monitor the "orb of Smarties"
jbehrle in BBN Planet WR. If we had we could have prevented this
problem before it became critical! Working with Len Rose
of BBN Planet WR to see if we can get a "SmartieCam"
setup on the Web for proactive monitor of the WR's
"orb of Smarties".
Note: 36 Len Rose reports that "We will have the Smarties Real Time
06/09/95 12:05 Monitor installed sometime later today. The url will be
jbehrle http://www.netsys.com:/smarties.html (jpeg) In order to
monitor the orb, they will have to be relocated to my
office since we do not have a coax cable that will reach
their normal location."
Note: 37 At this point we have seen over 1200 finger requests for
06/09/95 12:21 this ticket. Requests are coming in at more that 100/hour.
Just a note to our viewers, this is only a test, if this
had been an actual emergency you would have been directed
to let BBN Planet manage your Internet Services. We promise
to work just as hard to get your IP packets to their
BBN Planet,"How Business does Business on the Internet!"
Note: 38 Kobi from the BBN Planet SER NOC reports that they have
06/09/95 13:44 uncovered a similar problem in College Park, MD. Per Kobi:
jbehrle "In fact, it has been suggested that the problem is much
more serious; there is no record of the SER *ever* having a
cache of smarties". Kobi hopes to avert a similar crisis in
SER, she plans to obtain a "Sam's" card today so Smarties
should be available in bulk in the SER NOC shortly. Kobi,
please keep us posted, as we can always try to fire up the
carrier pigeons for one more run...
Note: 39 Mark Moraes from D. E. Shaw & Co, has offered to assist in
06/09/95 13:56 Smarties network testing on the Wellfleet router platform.
jbehrle Mark reports "We invariably use Gummi Bears to test our
New York-London link", as their systems person in London
"has this deep-seated addiction for candy".
Mark, We welcome your assistance, as we suspect this is an
internet-wide problem. It appears that MCI BIPP opened TT#
3001 on this issue, but as it has been closed as this prob
is beleived to be at the protocol-layer.
Note: 40 Len Rose of the WR is pleased to announce that there is now
06/09/95 14:10 a real time SmartieCam(sm) installed at:
This will enable real time monitoring of the Smarties
situation in the BBN Planet WR.
Note: 41 The "FedEx Airbill Tracking Information" finally confirms
06/09/95 15:16 that the "Package has been Delivered!". It reports the
jbehrle delivery time was 10:44 PST, and that it was signed for by
"K.NAYLOR" Kristin Naylor, our temp WR receptionist.
Some of us saw the rejoicing live over the Internet back
in note 34. Suspect that FedEx will be out of business
if Cisco ever adds a 'Heisenberg Compensator' to their 7000
Note: 42 In ref to note 31, Bob Stratton from UUNET Security Services
06/09/95 17:14 extends the following cautionary note "Experimental
jbehrle transmissions of Skittles (the most similar traffic to
Smarties available at this site) through a TIS Gauntlet with
the optional h/w encryption card appears to produce output
(on the red-net BNC connector) roughly similar to 'chocolate
Magic Shell'." It is unclear if this substance produces
serious throughput bottlenecks (on hardening). Bob urges
the use of software crypto until this effect can be studied.
Note: 43 Cathy Wittbrodt called in to report the SmartiesCam(tm) is
06/09/95 21:55 non-functional. I have been able to confirm that we can
kjc reach http://www.netsys.com/cgibin/smarties from noc.bbn.com
without a problem. Recommend that Cathy check into her
local connectivity (she is at home).
Note: 44 It appears that the web browser on my laptop has some
06/09/95 22:38 problems. Sorry for the false alarm. --- Cathy
Note: 45 To catch up on some important information that did not make
06/10/95 00:00 it into the ticket, Peiter Zatko of the Internet Server
kjc group reports that "Front Door for Windows should have a
point-and-click interface for Smarties capabilities. The BBN
IServer server side software already has this capability
[per secret code implemented by Dan Franklin]. Unfortunately
the route for porting the smarties code implemented on the
Macintosh FrontDoor to the Windows frontdoor requires a 3rd
party library package which prevents the Windows programers
Note: 46 ...from doing any Windows programming."
Note: 47 John Rugo responded to Elizabeth Kaufman's Site Patrol issue
06/10/95 00:28 asking if the custom Smarties-proxy will include
kjc authentication with non-repudiation. He further details,
"There are unconfirmed reports that a company in the east
bay has learned of the Smarties crisis and has been shipping
product with the Smarties label but which are not the real
Note: 48 Elizabeth Kaufman responds to John Rugo that he does in fact
06/10/95 00:31 raise a very complex set of security issues. "The proposed
kjc proxy...relies on the accuracy and integrity of the data
label (i.e., if it looks like a Smartie and comes from the
Smartie-place, it's a Smartie). I observe from Note 30 that
this policy has already resulted in the mistaken consumption
of "mini Sweet Tarts." Verifying content if we mistrust the
labels is technically complex- we could either go to a third
party CA (Candy Authority) infrastructure, or we could...
Note: 49 ...implement the sensory equivalent of checksumming, and
06/10/95 00:33 implement a "taste signature" on each proxy server. Do you
kjc have a preference? (BTW, do you believe the current crisis
to be a natural shortage, or a deliberate Denial-of-Smarties
Len Rose asserts that "WE MUST ASSURE that we are safe from
Note: 50 I believe I can report from personal experience that using
06/10/95 01:08 the sensory equivalent of checksumming in conjunction with a
kjc taste signature will lead to a stomach ache unless the
implementation of Taste Buds works on a personnel rotation
basis (i.e. limiting individual consumption to a reasonable
number of packets where "reasonable" prevents nausea).
However, here we run into variability in accordance with
different people's ability to distinguish between Smarties,
Mini Sweet Tarts and other similar products.
Note: 51 It has been suggested that CERT might want a heads-up on an
06/10/95 08:01 issue of possibly large scale importance - namely reports of
kjc Denial-of-Smarties attacks occuring throughout various
regions of the Internet from unknown sources. Additionally,
there have been reports of Smartie-Spoofing by cleverly
disguised "mini Sweet Tarts." If true this issue could make
the Morris Worm look like a benign geek prank.
Note: 52 I think it would be in BBN PlaNET's best interest NOT to
06/10/95 12:03 involve the CERT in this issue, as it is a contained
tdias problem and a CERT advisory concerning this issue would
only cause an Internet-wide panic, comparable to the SATAN
and IP-Spoofing advisories, i.e. the NOC would have a heck
of a time with all the Smarties Spoofing filters that would
have to be installed.
Also the CERT has no sense of humor, from past experiences.
Note: 53 I received a call from Moira, from the CERT. Someone, had
06/10/95 12:40 mailed the CERT concerning this issue. (KJC, naughty,
tdias naughty) She wished to know, the impact of this issue, and
how we'd like the CERT to be involved, especially with the
Smarties Spoofing incidents that have occured. She indicate
d that the CERT will possibly create an notice concerning
this issue, on 06/12/95, or at least offer their services at
that time. Futher she indicated, that...
************* CONTINUED ***********
Note: 54 ******** continued from previous note ***************
06/10/95 12:44 ... that the CERT does have M&M's technology and is aware
tdias of several issues involving them, but that their Smarties
experience is rather limited, in fact, Moira was the only
person, within the CERT NOC who was aware of Smarties,
because she's originaly from the UK, where Smarties are
plentiful and she had to inform other CERT NOC'ers of what
Smarties are. Finally she indicated, through her patience &
understanding that note 52 is wrong; the CERT has humor.
Note: 55 Oh ya, I finally tasted a Smartie today. The suckers are
06/10/95 12:55 vile; it was like licking the inside of a Kool-Aid packet
tdias or emptying out a whole Pixie stick on your tongue at once.
I would think that only a surplus of those toxic little
tablets would be something to be worried about and a
shortage of them would be something to rejoice.
Gummi Bears,btw, are much better. (Tony attempts a flamewar)
Note: 56 A minor flame war has ensued between BBN Planet's
06/10/95 15:12 New England region (formerly NEARNET) and BBN Planet's
tdias Southeastern region (formerly SURANET)
(Hey it was the only element missing from this saga.)
Note: 57 The latest count of acessing the soon-to-be legendary
06/10/95 17:44 "Smarties" ticket, stands at 1777 as of
tdias Sat Jun 10 17:27:04 1995. Here are some of the domains that
have fingered us: (get your mind out of the gutter)
ucl.ac.uk, cisco.com, ludd.luth.se, dec.com, mit.edu,
netcom.com, world.std.com, ftp.com, cnri.reston.va.us,
convex.com, evtech.com, rutgers.edu, umd.edu, uunet.ca,
uiuc.edu, marble.com, ora.com, toronto.edu, qualcomm.com
************ CONTINUED ****************
Note: 58 Think.COM, bellcore.com, buffalo.edu, nasa.gov,
06/10/95 17:52 kochi-u.ac.jp, liero.cc.lut.fi, swissbank.com,
tdias nyu.edu, anu.edu.au, apple.com, cern.ch, umich.edu.
interpath.net, realtime.net, columbia.edu, wais.com,
Note: 59 Try not to pay too much attention to the rants and raves
06/12/95 09:33 of Tony Dias (tdias) in notes 52-58 as it has come to our
jbehrle attention that Tony was suffering from a sugar rush
overload, at the time...
Note: 60 Nora Lundin from the WR will be send a supply of the
06/12/95 09:35 cleverly disguised "mini Sweet Tarts" to the HQ and SER
jbehrle NOC's for additional Smartie-Spoofing testing.
Note: 61 On Wed, 07 Jun 1995 at 14:53:22 Cisco released the "Cisco
06/12/95 09:37 Smarties Advisory" (CSCdi35420) warning of a vulnerability
jbehrle in Cisco's IOS software when the 'smarties' keyword is used
in extended foodstuff access control lists. It warns that:
"This bug can, under very specific circumstances and only
with certain consumption units, allow unauthorized sugar
products that resemble Smarties such as 'Skittles' and
'M&Ms' to circumvent a filtering router".
Note: 62 Massachusetts local Security Contractor Hobbit reports that
06/13/95 07:22 a temporary solution to Smarties leakage may be in the form
kjc of a new package from Italy called SPREE, currently in beta
testing. It can wrap traffic inside DES, 3DES or IDEA sugar
coating, using color-coded Drakes-Hershey key exchange at
the beginning of the session. He notes that while the
resulting SPREE-encapsulated packets are theoretically 2^63
times harder to crack open than UUNet's Skittles, they are
big & hard & difficult to push through the ST connectors...
Note: 63 ...on some network hubs. One of the beta testers has
06/13/95 07:25 suggested possible lozenge deformation in rare cases where
kjc transmission media are run close to hot steam pips as on
larger college campuses. This problem has not yet been
thoroughly reviewed by the candographic community at large,
but alert users will quickly become aware of the problem if
their arriving SPREEs start appearing gummi.
Note: 64 All of us in Western Region have gotten back to our normal
06/13/95 14:49 sugar high. It is good to know that there is such a spirit
cjw of cooperation out there. Thanks to everyone for your ideas
and support. We will continue to monitor the Smarties bugs
filed with various vendors and will keep the community
up to date on the status. ---Cathy
We will continue to monitor the Smarties bugs filed with
various vendors and will keep the community up to date on
For more information, please contact the BARRNET Network Operations Center
at firstname.lastname@example.org or (617) 873-8601. Thanks!
© 1995 Peter Langston