My (Steve Gibson’s) Blog v2.0

Thanks for your interest in my ongoing work, presumably as evidenced by your being here. Or, phrased another way, you might be here because you are wondering WTF is going on with me, GRC, SpinRite, SQRL and anything else. I will attempt to satisfy those questions.

I’m posting this today (April 18th, 2019) because I have moved this blog to my own server. The two blogs I had at “steve.grc.com” & “blog.grc.com” have always been hosted at wordpress.org. But I needed to bring up a PHP-enabled server to host our first ever public web forums, in support of SQRL (see the link in the header above). We will also eventually have public web forms for SpinRite and other future projects, so SQRL is only the first. Since WordPress is written in PHP, and my annual contract with wordpress.org will be ending in a month, I decided that this would also be a good time to consolidate those two blogs and bring up my own WordPress blog on my own server.

This first post serves as a placeholder so that those who were subscribed to my original “steve.grc.com” blog can subscribe to this one before that blog disappears from the world. But while I’m here, as promised above, I’ll take a few minutes to explain where things stand:

Long time SpinRite fans are pretty much furious with me for allowing SpinRite to remain untouched and un-updated for 15 years. I get that. Believe me… I really really really do get that. And I truly cannot wait to be able to return to work on SpinRite. But as you will see once you become familiar with SQRL, it really does solve the problem of using secrets (passwords) and usernames or email, to sign-in to websites. A few people who were furious with me for spending so much time (about 5+ years) to perfect SQRL started to understand once they used it. So, once I had the idea for SQRL I had to make it happen. And it didn’t seem as though it was something I could propose and then delegate without making sure that my original vision was at least given a chance to succeed. SQRL is just about to have that chance.

Once SQRL has been officially released I will immediately be returning to work on v6.1 of SpinRite. The best true apology I can offer is not to call the next version v7.0 an ask for an upgrade fee, but to instead call it v6.1 and make it a free upgrade for all v6.0 owners… even for those who purchased v6.0 15 years ago in 2004 when it was finished and released.

So, that’s where things stand. SQRL is working. You can use it right now to log into the SQRL forums and several other test sites. There are working clients for Windows, iOS and Android, as well as a web extension that runs on Firefox and Chrome (and the Chromium version of Edge). I’m within a few days of taking my own SQRL client for Windows (which is WINE compatible so that it can be used on macOS and Linux) to v1.0.

I plan to post updates here on my status and on what’s going on, not only about SQRL but also about SpinRite v6.1… and anything else that I think needs saying.

Thanks for your interest and for your participation! Onward!

/Steve.



This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

30 Responses to My (Steve Gibson’s) Blog v2.0

  1. Paul Wirtz says:

    Hi Steve,

    FYI
    You now show up in Feedly the feed reader I use after google reader closed.
    I had added grc.com a few years back but nothing never showed up until today.

    • Steve Gibson says:

      That’s really interesting, Paul.
      Thanks for the heads-up about that.

      • Chris Maurer says:

        Steve, I have been very interested in your work and had subbed to email notifications also and had heard nothing for many years. Very exited you are still around and look forward to anything you do . Cheers from Australia.

  2. Tim Nolte says:

    Just a clarification you we’re never hosted on WordPress.org you we’re hosted on WordPress.com. And now you are running a self-hosted WordPress.org install. 😉

  3. Uncle Billiam says:

    I am also happy to know that you’re still alive!
    Looking forward to 6.1!

    Now I need to report that I’m apparently not getting the subscribe with my email to work. Keeps taking me to a page not found and wanting me to do a search.

  4. Keld Herbst says:

    I have followed your work, Steve, for many years now, and have appreciated everything you’ve taught me. Especially your help regarding ports on routers have been a subject of great interest for me, but I’ve read every word you’ve published. There’s not many people around who do what you do, and even fewer who dig as deep as you do.

    Congrats with the new blog, I’m looking forward to following it 🙂

  5. mADMAN in MN says:

    Dear Steve,

    As what might be called an “historic” user of SpinRite, I have two questions for you:

    1. Do you still make available a “retail version” of the product?
    Or is SpinRite a “download only” at this point?

    2. Searching high and low for my several versions of SpinRite, I’ve yet to find the original book/software/serial numbers so…
    If I could provide you (privately) my name, addresses lived-at when purchased (and registered), for the version(s) I own, would you have existing records to verify my status as an owner?

    Any response will be appreciated.
    As were a number of your utilities (‘Leak Test,’ ‘DCOMbobulator,’ “Never 10′) but above them all I’d hardly be able to tell you how MANY times SpinRite saved flaky, error-ridden, discs — be they floppies or HDDs!

    • Steve Gibson says:

      My next post here will be about my roadmap for SpinRite since people who don’t listen to the Security Now! podcast will not have heard about my plans. And having them documented would be useful in any event. 🙂

      1. We (thank god) no longer have any physical shipment of SpinRite. Only the download. That makes the lives of my little 3-employee company so much more sane.

      2. We still maintain a database of every copy of SpinRite ever purchased going back 30+ years now. We have pre- and post- online databases, and the pre-online db is written in FoxPro (a dBase II clone). If you will write to Sue at our sales eMail which is always sales{current year}@grc.com she’ll be glad to look you up and verify your status.

      Since SpinRite v6 has been in use for the past 15 years, we are giving serious consideration to terminating upgrades from earlier versions once v6.1 is formally released under the thinking that since v6.1 is going to be so much faster and more capable than v6.0, and we’re going to be giving it away to all v6.0 owners going back 15 years… that should be a sufficient commitment to our customers. And that anyone who’s still interested in SpinRite at all will have upgraded to v6 sometime in the past 15 years… so they’ll be covered.

      And thank you VERY MUCH for your interest and support! ALL of those other things you mentioned that I have done, and have been able to give away, is because of people purchasing SpinRite.

      /Steve.

  6. Tom Huff says:

    Hi Steve,

    I’ve been following your work for over 20-years now. I’m a fan indeed, and just wanted to let you know how excited I was to get your email about about this blog, and the coming updates. I’m truly looking forward to it.

  7. I have been following for many years and using Spin Rite. I am looking forward to a version that will work with my newer computers (about 5 years old), as I cannot reach the hard drive when I set the boot to “historical” and cannot boot spin rite with the newer protected modes. I am sure there is a work around, but I have not found it. I always understood the need for SQRL, but the new Spin Rite excites me too.

    • Steve Gibson says:

      Believe me, Larry… I’m =so= ready to get back to SpinRite!

      When I stopped work on v6.1 to develop SQRL, I had its prototype AHCI direct hardware driver running. It was transferring 64K sectors at a time into a 32 megabyte buffer, and was clocking in at half a terabyte per hour. That means that v6.1 will be able to scan a 4 terabyte drive overnight, in just 8 hours. That returns it to practicality for periodic maintenance.

      /Steve.

  8. Kent Heard says:

    Glad to hear that SpinRite will be updated and can’t wait to see what you do to it. I have started with version 4 of SpinRite and used it to fix and recover many drives in the past.
    I also have used Chromazone screen saver and truly wish you would bring it into the modern world. I realize that it was designed to use VGA graphics but it was and still is one of the most amazing screensavers I have every seen. I just wonder what you could accomplish with today’s modern graphics cards that would not have been possible in years past.

  9. Lee Guenveur says:

    Steve and Team,
    We listen to Security Now! podcast when we can and miss hearing you regularly on Leo’s show on KFI 640AM Los Angeles. We upgraded to S/R 6.0 years ago and still use it to save drives of all types. While cleaning up our office computer stuff this week we found a 6″x6″ brown cardboard mailer with a postmark from Laguna Hills CA dated 1-11-1991 with a $.65 cent postage meter stamp.

    Inside is a pristine 5 1/4″ grey floppy disc of Spinrite II Ver 1.1 serial #Cnnnnn33 copyright 1988-1990 by Gibson Research Corp. We bought this this for our IBM XT and AT series computers to keep the drives healthy at our Union 76 station. Still have the IBM’s and the Spinrite disc, we never throw anything out if we can keep it running. My wife loves to boot up the old system and run some old dos and UNIX programs now and then, thanks to you and your team we still can.

    We may have the original Spinrite I somewhere around here! Thanks for keeping our drives running all of these years for us and all of your other products on line that keep us safe on line, you are a gift from God for your service to the computer techs of the world.

    Eagerly awaiting S/R 6.1! Thank You and stay healthy young man!

    Lee and Dee

  10. Rick Grata says:

    Hi Steve,

    Just stopping in to say Hi. Nice to see you moved over to hosting your blog on your own server, sweet.

    I also wanted to mention that I purchased and received a PiDP-11 kit from Oscar Vermeulen that you and Leo were talking about on several episodes Security Now. I’ve looked it over and am very excited to build it. I haven’t started yet but when I do I’ll submit a picture to Security Now. Just wanted to say thanks for bringing this fun project to a lot of peoples attention.

    Also a proud owner of Spinrite 6 and looking forward to the next update.

    Thanks for everything you do and take care,
    Rick Grata

  11. James says:

    Thanks Steve. Still following you since the first SN on TWiT. 🙂
    Looking forward to SpinRite 6.

  12. Jeff says:

    Hi Steve. I’ve been a listener to every single Security Now episode since day 1 and a happy owner of SpinRite. Not to mention all the great tools you have on your website including the password generator. Thanks for everything you do!

    1 small simple request. Please consider a mobile-friendly / responsive design WordPress template for your new blog. On the iPhone it seems to only be using a desktop layout which is hard to read.

  13. Ann says:

    Hi Steve have been following you for many years’ thank you for all you do.

  14. Tim Deaton says:

    Good to hear that you are back at it!

    I used SpinRite YEARS ago. After 40+ years as a systems integrator, I have ‘semi-retired’ and now provide my services free of charge to those in our community (Bonita Springs, Florida) and remotely all over the country to my friends and family.

    Mostly, it is cleaning up the mess that Windows leaves (YUUUCCCHHH – what a poor excuse for an OS!) and the perverts that plant malware, spyware and virus programs on the computers of the unsuspecting (what a waste of bandwidth).

    So, you and I might be older, but we can BOTH still be productive.

    Have at it!

  15. Derek Hamilton says:

    Hi Steve,
    You’ve mentioned many times on SN about the big release event you are going to do on SN. Are we counting weeks, months or longer here? I can’t wait to watch.

    Thanks.

  16. Raymond Day says:

    I seen a person in a store and he wanted to buy Windows 10 but they did not have that. I told him he can download it and pay it. He said his hard drive was bad. I told him about spinrite and said go to grc.com and told him that all most end from working on SQRL and I said spinrite cost about $100. I think he will do that. I told him it worked with me for old hard drives and said he will update it for free soon.

    I have WordPress too on my server at home. I had WordPress for years. Just looked at Dashboard and I have 5,850 post on it now. Because it’s on my home I don’t want to say were my website is.

    • Raymond Day says:

      I still have the “Hello world!” it I started at 12/25/2004 4:55 PM So I think I started WordPress Version 1.2

  17. MJD says:

    The red background is very obnoxious. Any chance you can to it down?

  18. G says:

    Steve,
    I’m a SN listener for many years. I’ve learned so much from you and look forward to it every week! I’m in the process of downloading all of the episodes and noticed that Episode 643 is missing from your website. It should be on one of these links but it’s not.
    https://www.grc.com/securitynow.htm
    https://www.grc.com/sn/past/2017.htm

    What was the first episode that had video?

    Live long and prosper my friend… 🙂

  19. G says:

    I posted on here a few days ago and it never showed up. Maybe it got spam filtered so I’m posting again…

    Steve,
    I love your SN show and have been listening for years. I’ve learned so much from you. FYI, while downloading all of the SN episodes I noticed that Episode #643 is missing from your grc website. Also, what is the first episode that had video?

    Thank you!

  20. David Haslam says:

    The Chrome extension for SQRL can also be installed in the Brave browser.

  21. Totally off topic.
    I was wondering if you have ever written anything about digitally signed emails. A long time ago I got a digital certificate and when I sent out an email it looked lovely on several email clients UNTIL I sent out an email the day before the certificate expired. Then bad things happened. When the recipient looked at their inbox the next day rather than seeing my email with a nice icon, they saw it with a “nasty” flag!. In fact all the emails I had sent in the past now looked evil.

    I’d really like your take on this.

    Thanks for all your great work in the past, keep it up.

  22. Wayne says:

    I saw on the old news blog that there are plans for even more future posts about Spinrite 6.1. Please no more posts, after many years of this hot air it’s beginning to feel like some sort of mockery of the Spinrite userbase. Be Like Mike and just do it.

    • Steve Gibson says:

      Wayne: I 100% understand your attitude and frustration. I know how much I have been trying everyone’s patience. And that even my decision to give away for free the result of this next major update (which really should be a v7.0) has not mollified and satisfied those who just want SpinRite updated. But it’s all I’ve been able to do.

      There is only one of me, and I can only do one thing at a time. So whether or not you agree with my decision to stop work on SpinRite in order to produce a true solution for remote website logon — eliminating the need for usernames, eMail and passwords while hugely improving security — it was the course of action I chose and then took… and I have no regrets about that because a mature and true solution to that problem now exists in SQRL.

      So you are free to call my plans for SpinRite’s future “hot air” if you wish. But I have always been getting closer to returning to work on SpinRite, and you will be reaping the benefits of my work, for free, once I’m able to finally return. There is nothing I want more. 🙂

Leave a Reply to Paul Wirtz Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.