Thursday, October 30, 2008

Tag, you're it

When I started writing ruby I missed the convenience of a tags file for jumping around in vim to different parts of a project. After a bit of digging I found rtags to replace my beloved exuberant-ctags. Today I updated my metasploit trunk and, since it had been awhile since I had updated tags, I also ran rtags. Normally rtags is slow. Running it in the metasploit source tree typically takes several minutes. Today it seemed to hit infinite loops in multiple files, taking more than ten minutes on a single file before I killed it, added that file to the exclude list, ran it again and walked away for a while. After running into this a dozen times or so over the course of the day, I decided to switch tactics. As it turns out, exuberant-ctags has support for ruby, and probably has had it since before I started using rtags.

root framework3 # time ctags --exclude '.svn' \
--exclude=documentation/ --exclude=external/ \
--exclude=data --recurse .

real 0m0.742s
user 0m0.616s
sys 0m0.092s


Tuesday, October 21, 2008


While attending SecTor, I finally met HD Moore in person after having been a core developer for Metasploit for almost eight months. I had been introduced to him at Defcon a couple of years ago but we didn't actually talk so it doesn't count. Over beers, he asked me to co-present "Metasploit Prime," a discussion of new features available in the upcoming Metasploit 3.2-release. The release itself will be announced in the next few days. Slides(pdf) and video (wmv) for that presentation are now available. The video is actually just audio over the slides, which is somewhat disappointing. This is a gripe I've had with Blackhat for many years and Sector made the same mistake. Regardless of that little issue, Sector was a blast; I learned some stuff and had a great time in Toronto hanging out with HD, Jay Beale, Mark Fabro, and a bunch of other incredibly smart guys. SecTor is much smaller than Defcon (which is the only other security conference I've been to) and I really liked the tighter knit crowd -- it makes it much easier to meet people. It was considerably less technical but I enjoyed it nonetheless. At Defcon, I mostly just hung out with people I already knew because the crowds were so daunting while at Sector, it was easy to meet the rockstar presenters as well as lesser-known attending geniuses. Because of my experience at Sector, I will certainly look at smaller conferences in a new light.