I’m in Amarillo, Texas staying at a hotel that advertises that the rooms include “Hi-Speed Internet” (it’s on the hotel sign! We’ve come a long way in the last few years!) and was amazed when I got into the room to find that it’s an Ethernet jack (you have to borrow a cable from them. A three-foot cable. I’d pay money for a 10-foot cable right now). But worse, they aren’t running DHCP or anything even vaguely logical. Instead they have a 3×4 handout at the front desk detailing how to set a hard IP address, gateway address, etc. But that’s not the best part. The best part is that the IP address is: “192.168.1.99-213”. Yes, you have to randomly try values until you find that you’re not sharing an IP with someone else in the hotel. Very weird. Very… not a nice DHCP-based wireless network.
And it’s always great fun to browse the “network neighborhood”. I count ten other folders (e.g., other users in the hotel who have their systems open to the network). Hmm… one of them is P2PDATA, interestingly enough. And a bit of poking around and I find a file called – ready for this? – 2001 Dixon R Tax Return.tax. Oh, Mr (or Mrs) Dixon. You need to fix your security! Or, perhaps, Microsoft, you need to set things up so that by default all Windows systems are closed, not open.