Don’t litter

I’ve always hate when people throw their thrash around. My opinion about someone can go from “respectable citizen that I look up to” to “Obvious douche-bag that doesn’t respect anyone but him/herself” if I see them throw stuff on the ground. I often see people do it, and I try to lecture them whenever I catch them in the act. My hopes are of course that they will feel at least some bit of shame and maybe change their behaviour in the future.

Anyway, so near our apartment there’s this recycling station. A few containers where you can throw paper, plastic, metal and glass. The usual. Once a week there’s this pile of crap that keeps showing up. It almost always follows the same pattern and always ends up at the same spot, which makes me think that it might be the same person doing it. The trash in the pile is usually empty boxes from some fast food place (kebab and then some text in Arabic or something) and then usually a few electronics.

It always irritates me to the point where I would like to catch them in the act. But I never do. Well, until now. Or I didn’t really catch them in the act. It was more about what they dumped this time. On Wednesday this week, in the morning when I was leaving some plastic in the container, I noticed something in the “illegally placed trash pile”. Two computers (My time to shine)! I checked if there were any hard drives in them, and there were. So I decided that if the machines were still there when I came back after work, I would go there with a screwdriver and take out the drives. I was a bit worried since it was the day when they usually empty the containers, so the risk was that they would just bring the computers with them when they emptied everything else.

When I came back after work, the containers were empty but the computers were still there on the ground. So I went home, took a screwdriver and went back. It was a strange case that had a locking mechanism for the hard drives which was not easy to get off. Also, during the time I was sitting there in the dark with my screwdriver and flashlight, someone came to empty their recyclables. I quickly stood up and hid my stuff under a plastic bag, then proceeded to empty some plastic I had brought with me, in the container (to seem less suspicious. It’s all about the looks!). When the person had left I continue with my secret mission, and managed to take out all three drives.

I plugged them into my dock at home and took a quick look at the first drive. Unformated as expected with Windows Vista installed (bleh). I created a virtual drive for VirtualBox so that I could try to start the operating system on it.

VBoxManage internalcommands createrawvmdk -filename “henrietta.vmdk” -rawdisk /dev/sdg

However, the operating system was damaged and the repair process didn’t seem to work. It might have been a driver issue since it tried to load some ATI drivers before it crashed every time. I wasn’t too interested in spending a large amount of time on this, so I proceeded to just look at the data on the drive from my Linux machine. It appears to have been owned by a Ukranian lady (both machines seems to have been owned by her). They could of course have been stolen from her, so shouldn’t be too quick to blame. But i rule that out as the browser history and the programs installed all followed a consistent pattern, and all accounts saved in the browser (chrome) were using the same email and password. For the sake of our lady of the day (Henrietta), I will not disclose any detailed personal info.

The first hard drive with Windows Vista contained everything I would need to hijack the targets Internet life.

  • Browser history
  • Cookies
  • Email address (henr*************
  • Account names
  • Passwords
  • Personal files (A lot of text documents)
  • Images (hundreds)
  • Videos
  • Music

And loads of other sensitive data. I took a look at the data and then I threw everything away. No accounts were ever tested or anything unethical like that. One could argue that just taking theses drives were unethical, but if you throw something on the ground with the intention of dumping it where it’s not supposed to be, you sort of resign your ownership of it. Still there is the possibility of it being stolen. None of the operating systems worked on the machines, and the hardware was very old and some of the cards were even visibly broken. So I doubt it was stolen and then dumped there. Why would a thief go to the trouble of dumping it at “almost” the right location.

The second harddrive followed the same pattern but had Windows XP installed on it. The same user and the same type of websites had been visited. It also had a data partition with hundreds of family photos, photos of the suspected owner, and all sorts of sensitive personal data.

The third drive was completely dead and I didn’t put any more time into it.

All drives will be given to a friend who will physically destroy them (take them apart and render them useless).

Anyway, if you’re a complete ass who can’t take responsibility for your crap and just throw everything around you as you please, at least don’t throw crap that could potentially be traced back to you. Or, maybe continue, so that it’s easier to catch you. Right, Henrietta?

Stranger – Chapter 7 – Anything can be a monster with the right type of imagination

So my wife and I have divided chores in our household in certain categories. Some chores she will take care of and do it however she pleases, and some I will. Others we will both take whenever there is time. One chore my wife is responsible for is taking the laundry, this includes folding the clothes. However, when she folds the clothes, she places them on the bed. Then we are both responsible for taking our own folded clothes to where we store them (we currently store them separately for no specific reason, it just became like that). We are both lazy in our own ways, and I’m lazy when it comes to putting away my clothes once they have been folded. Thus, they end up spread out around my side of the bed. Currently, one pile is laying on the air conditioning unit next to my bed, and another one on the windowsill next to my bed.

A few nights ago Stranger was on watch as usual, when he suddenly detected something straight out of a horror movie. Between the folded clothes on the windowsill, were red glowing eyes. There were hundreds of them, and they were staring right at us, ready to attack. This of course required immediate evacuation. Stranger acted without hesitation and grabbed the cover, and then swiftly made his way out on the balcony. Standing out there, I woke up, and Stranger let go of the controls. I knew what had happened, but the feeling of being confused and terribly frightened had me standing out there for a few minutes before I could go back inside. I double checked the clothes so that nothing was hiding under them, and then went back to sleep.

Next to the clothes is a pile of socks I’ve been picking from every morning when I’m about to take my morning shower. Last night Stranger sensed a disturbance in the force coming from the pile of socks. His instincts are as always, 100% correct and the socks had turned into snakes! He quickly leaped into battle against the overwhelming number of foes (I have a lot of socks, and change daily, sometimes twice a day depending on what I do during the day). It was a long and hard battle, but I never doubted Strangers abilities and he obviously managed to take care of the threat.

When I woke up the traces of the battle were still there in plain sight. My first thought was that I might need to call a medic to the scene, but there were clearly no survivors. There were socks spread out literally everywhere in the room (I even had one tucked up in my armpit).

Stranger triumphs, yet again.

Thanks Stranger!

Extract private key from multibit-hd

I used this wallet for a long time. Since they dropped the development and didn’t really provide a good way to extract the private keys from the wallet, I had to find a hacky way to do it. Fortunately for me, someone else had already done this. However, I realise that this method might not be very easy for everyone, so I decided to fork the wallet and provide a patched compiled version that anyone can use to extract their keys. The instructions are the same as in the source link below.

Source for patch and instructions:

My patched fork:

Compiled jar:

If you downloaded and used the compiled jar above, you can skip to step 4.

  1. Clone the MultiBit HD Git repository
  2. Apply the patch above
  3. Build the project: mvn clean dependency:sources install
  4. Start the application: java -jar mbhd-swing/target/multibit-hd.jar
  5. Go to Tools -> Sign message and enter a Bitcoin address from your wallet for which you want to recover the private key.
  6. Press finish.
  7. Read the Bitcoin address and corresponding private key from the console output

When you have the key you can import it in whatever client you have. Remember that different addresses in the wallet equals different private keys, so you will need to extract all of them via the “Sign” method in multibit-hd. If you can’t figure it out, leave a comment and I might be able to help.