#050, October 1, 2001

 Cruzio/The Internet Store Newsletter - Number 50, October 1, 2001

1. Recent outages and other problems
2. Small Business Series starts this Wednesday
3. Viruses and Worms: what to do
4. .info names available starting today; .biz delayed
5. Epitaph for Scruz.net
6. About this newsletter
7. How to reach Cruzio (dial-in or tech support)

1. Recent outages and other problems
This is a big apology to those of you who suffered outages or slowdowns
in the week of September 17th to 24th. First came the Nimda virus
(see item 3 below.) Then, Cruzio had to move equipment away from our
long-term provider, Tycho networks, which was lost to this year's
high-tech meltdown (see item 5 below).

At various times in that week, some Cruzio customers experienced dropped
connections, unreachable Web sites, or other inconveniences. We kept the
interruptions to a minimum, moved equipment at midnight, and worked
around the clock to make necessary changes and repairs. Many thanks
to our intrepid engineering and support staff for their hard work! And
to all of you: we appreciate your patience, and hope you will enjoy
our normal, high level of service in the future. In fact, Cruzio took
advantage of the move to improve many aspects of our connection
to the greater Internet. 

2. Small Business Series starts this Wednesday
Starting this Wednesday, October 3rd, Cruzio and our co-sponsors
will be holding our third annual Small Business Fair. This year
it's a series of events, rather than just a single day. On the
first four Wednesday evenings in October, local consultants,
technology and service experts, and small business decision-
makers will meet to discuss current technology and techniques. It
will be a great opportunity to see what's available and to get your
questions answered. We'll have everything from Quickbooks specialists
to Web designers to business loan managers.

To read more about the event, and to register, please go to

Admission is just $25 per night, $80 for all four nights, if you
pre-register (it's $5 higher if you pay at the door.) The price
of admission includes an elegant buffet prepared by very fine local
caterers: Southern Exposure Catering on October 3rd, and Jozseph
Schultz, the former chef at India Joze, for the other nights  -- yes,
we totally lucked out!

We would love to see you there!

The facts:
	When: The first four Wednesdays of October from 4:30 to 7 pm
	Where: The Museum of Art and History, 705 Front Street, 
		Downtown Santa Cruz
	    Oct  3rd: "Growing your business"
	    Oct 10th: "Working with technology and consultants"
	    Oct 17th: "Small Business marketing and public relations "
	    Oct 24th: "Building an online presence"
	Price: $25/evening, $80/whole series, if you pre-register.
	All pre-registrants receive a special limited edition Cruzio kitty
             baseball cap!
	More details: http://www.smallbusinessfair.com

3. Viruses and Worms: what to do
Two weeks ago, amid the initial horror of the World Trade Center tragedy
and in the same week when Cruzio was moving servers, a "worm" hit the
Internet and wreaked a great deal of damage upon individual machines
and the network itself. 

A worm is a destructive computer program which infects systems by
"worming" its way through the guts of a computer's operating system,
or from one system to another.  It doesn't usually alter files, but
rather does its damage by replicating itself until the system or
network is clogged with spurious messages, packages, files, and data. 

The Nimda Worm was very sophisticated, exploiting weaknesses in
Microsoft's Outlook Express and Internet Information System to
spread rapidly from system to system. Cruzio's computers, which
are Unix-based, were not directly affected by the worm.

But Cruzio's service was affected when sites all over the Net
running Microsoft software started spewing data directed at mail
and Web servers. At first, people noticed that Web sites were
difficult or impossible to reach. Then, Cruzio started finding
that packets were jamming our computers' processors -- so many 
incoming messages that our servers could not work fast enough
to keep e-mail and Web services working smoothly. Our staff had to
be very alert to notice and solve jams as soon as they occurred.
Many thanks to Chris and Mark for their tireless efforts! Problems
were discovered and solved very quickly.

We were bailing data out as fast as it was rushing in. But many of
our customers and other folks around the world had to completely
replace their system software. So it's time to remind everyone of
the three rules of fighting viruses:

	1. Don't open attachments unless they are something you
	   are expecting from someone you know.
	2. Back up your data regularly to floppy, tape, CD, or Zip disk
	   *and* check your backups regularly to see if they really work.
	3. Put virus detection software on your computer.

And please, if you have the type of computer prone to infection --
usually Windows and Windows NT -- please download the patch from 
Microsoft to fix the security hole. Sometimes the same virus will
hit again and again because people have neglected to do this.

We've got a whole page outlining viruses and techniques for combating

4. .info names available starting today; .biz delayed
Many Web sites on the Internet have addresses ending in ".com".
Others use ".net", ".org", or less common suffixes such as ".tv".
Now some new suffixes are becoming available: ".biz" and ".info".
Today, October 1st, 2001, is the first day that open registration
of the .info names will occur. The .biz names were slated for
today, too, but have been delayed until October 23rd.

For more information about the new suffixes, known as Top Level
Domains or TLD's, please see our Web page on the subject:

Cruzio is ready to handle registration for .biz and .info. If you are
interested, please e-mail office@cruzio.com, or drop by our office at
903 Pacific Avenue, Suite 101, or fill out an online application at:

5. Epitaph for Scruz.net
There are perhaps a few dozen people in Santa Cruz County who know
that an era has just passed. In about 1992, or forever ago in Internet
time, a group of Santa Cruz computer administrators began corresponding
and meeting regularly. Many represented "geek houses": residences inhabited
by a number of, well, geeks, who were interested in computers and
networking, and who wanted direct connections to the nascent Internet
for their super-wired homes. Others, like Cruzio's founders, were
providing Internet services to folks in the community. All of us wanted
higher speed data lines over the hill to the big data backbone in Silicon
Valley -- the promised land. We were, up till then, all making do with
telephone lines for connections. And we all had day jobs.

Matthew Kaufman and Qarin Van Brink were the ones who set up an
organization, Santa Cruz Community Internet (aka Scruz.net), to
bring the data line over the hill. They started with a T1 to a place
called The Little Garden in Santa Clara. The Little Garden was another
geeky cooperative. Almost all of us who'd attended the meetings kicked
in funds to get the project started, and Cruzio was one of Scruz.net's
first customers.

Over the years, Scruz.net sold Internet connections and so did 
Cruzio. Scruz.net sold Web hosting and so did Cruzio. But the two
companies worked closely together to provide the best data connections
and Internet service possible, and helped Santa Cruz become the
Internet-savvy community it is today. To this writer, the relationship
between Scruz.net and Cruzio proved that businesses don't have to be
cutthroat to succeed: we can co-operate, even while competing, to
improve services and prices all around. In that way it's perhaps
an "only in Santa Cruz" phenomenon.

Our cultures were different. Scruz.net employees wore black and drank
endless cans of Coke (one of their first pieces of furniture was a
Coke machine); Cruzio employees drank herbal tea and sported Teva's.
Scruz.net had a dog at work, and of course we have the Cruzio Kitty
(the logo, anyway.) We each had our niches, and would refer
customers to the other when their services were more suitable.
When we'd go upstairs to ask a question, the Scruz.net folks were
unfailingly polite and helpful: great neighbors, great business colleagues.

Scruz.net was merged into Netsource, and then purchased by Tycho.net.
Tycho was bought by DSL.net. Now DSL.net has abandoned most of its
Santa Cruz business -- including the business with Cruzio. So we had
to pack up our servers and move them elsewhere.

We were sorry to see the last of Scruz.net go. Our deepest appreciation
goes out to Qarin, Matthew, Stephanie, Jim, and many other Scruz.net/
Tycho/DSL.net employees for the fine service they provided us all
these years. We tips our hats to you.

6) About This Newsletter
Cruzio doesn't like to waste bandwidth with extra email, but we sometimes
have events and announcements that users need to know about. This seems
like the most efficient way to let people know what's happening. Hope
it's helpful. Please email support@cruzio.com with any comments or questions. 
By the way, we would love to have a regular, predictable schedule
for this newsletter...but we simply do not send it unless there is real
news enclosed. Thus the haphazard datelines.

7) How to Reach Cruzio (dial-in or tech support)
To reach the Cruzio Information Center, for online technical and
sales information:
To dial in to Cruzio, set your software to dial one of the numbers
below (note: we've expanded and joined modem pools, so you may be 
using another number. If so, don't worry, it still works just fine).
   56k: 459-9408

   33.6 kbps and under: 459-6230 
   To call Cruzio:
         459-6301............Use this number to check Cruzio's system status,
            pay your Cruzio bill, find out more about our hours and location,
            or to reach someone in customer service and technical support.
   To send email to Cruzio, use one of these addresses:
   	support@cruzio.com ......for technical support
	office@cruzio.com .......for billing and ordering information

    Cruzio's location:
	903 Pacific Avenue, Suite 101, Santa Cruz, CA 95060

    Cruzio's hours:
	Sales hours: 10am-6pm, Monday through Friday; 10 am - 2 pm Saturday
	Technical support: 10-6 pm, Monday through Friday, 10am - 2pm Saturday
	System monitoring, including customer-alerted emergencies, 24 hours
		per day, 365 days per year (leap years, 366 days)

Thanks very much from Cruzio:
	Chris, Peggy, John, Julianne, Patton, Kathy, Mark, Martin,
	Georgette, Tapati, Pedro, Brittany, Alec, Rachael, Barbara,
	Stephen, Paul, Gershom, Phil, Allyson, Laura, Jessi, Alice,
	Edgar, Alex, Michael, and another Kathy (the grownups);
	Jake, Annika, and Carly (the kids)

Here is a story, verbatim, by Annika, age 6. She is in first grade
and just learning to write. She loves making stories with lots of
illustrations. You can imagine that this story has very lovely
pictures: gown, crown, beautiful flowing hair.

        By Annika 
        THE PRINCESS Whose Hair was Down to hre [her] Heels

        One day in england a Princess was getting dreSSed When She
        noticed Hre Hair was not very loge [long] at all.

        Taet [that] nigt the Pincess wood not go to SleeP!

        She put on a wige [wig] the next morning!
        She didn't like it very much!

        She Thought and thought For about a minute or 2.
        but She couldn't think of someting to do.

Annika asked me, at this point, how long it takes hair to grow. "About
two years," I replied. Unfortunately, that didn't make for a very
exciting story, so it ends right here.