Defcon 18



Great story about DC18 from National Geographic!


Thank you EVERYONE who made Def Con 18 so successful - which is every one of
you! Speakers, staff, press, contest & event organizers, and just as
importantly the attendees! This was the best con I've personally had in years!

I'm still unpacking a little, but wanted to get the NOC Team's closing slides up
(I added a few more stats that effffn had sent over to me) so you now have the
complete set. They are posted here [PDF,

We'd be VERY interested in any feedback you have on the DefCon Mobile Edition
web-app we wrote this year. Compliments or complaints-- please, let us know if
it was even worth doing, what we could do better, etc. We want to wrangle
together app writers (inside & outside of staff) so we can make all the DefCon
apps better for you. So give us your feedback! (noc -at- defconnetworking d0t

We've already started planning discussions for the DC19 Network at the Rio! See
you all there!

Good MORNING! Yes, Sunday Morning... which most people sleep through due to the
events of Saturday night. Here at DefConNetworking, we understand. Ugh, we

But last night was awesome - the Ninja's threw a blow-out party - it was
awesome! Many thanks to Barkode & all the Ninja Networks guys for taking care
of people. I was really pleased to see a number of DefCon newbies at the party,
too. They were having a blast, and I would say it was a huge success.

But back to the network - things have been humming away. We've heard some
people still having a hard time keeping stable wifi connections - we'll keep
working on that. It's an issue that some devices/OS's have, having a hard time
deciding which AP to connect to, because they were so many around. We
understand it's frustrating and we'll see if we can work on that for next year.
It's a balance between coverage and capacity (clients/AP).

Meanwhile, we've peaked bandwidth at 60Mb yesterday morning (5-min average), and
even hit 54Mb this morning! Perhaps people are grabbing all the torrents they
can while they can?

We're glad to see a higher simultaneous client attach rate this year - up almost
40% over last year. We'll gather more facts/stats for the closing ceremonies
and post those afterwards.

Enjoy your Sunday!

Here's your Saturday morning update... wait, it's Saturday already?!

Wireless is working well again - we think we have a hold on the rebooting AP's.
We are curious if the ninja badges are interfering with wifi (or is our wifi
interferring with the badges? The badges have the ninjas; does that make
DefCon's wifi the pirates?! FIGHT!)

Wired network (speakers, press, staff) - 5x5. Someone asked for a 30'ft
cross-over cable today. Welcome to DefCon.

Our ISP (Sparkplug) called us last night -- "Oh hey, we went ahead & opened your
line up to 100Mb - use it!" - so please, for the sake of the children, use the
net! :) (kick-ass of them to do that, btw!!)

Somehow some of us got some sleep last night - not sure how we did that, but
there it is.

We've seen that, roughly, 50% of the wifi users are on secure wifi. We'd be
curious for any feedback on how things are going out there - email us (noc at
defconnetworking dot org, or @TheLockheed on Twitter).

The irony is that in the DefCon NOC - we have low wifi coverage.

Enjoy your Saturday! Get out, see the talks, make some friends, talk to people.
DefCon is an amazing experience, get the most out of it that you can!! Here's a
quote from a DefCon Virgin this year, "This really is the best experience I've
had in my life. And I'm being very literal. Thank you for your help and

Have some bandwidth & users graphs...


Can you tell where we re-booted the wireless network? :)


The wifi access points are randomly rebooting (cycling about every 15 mins).
We're working on fixing it now.

We found a fix for all you iPhone/iPad users. It's a known issue with Apple
devices, apparently.

The work-around is here

Thank you Princeton IT Group for the help!

Bandwidth & Users at 12:42p - we're clearly using the bandwidth (THANKS!) and
have more users online simultaneously than ever before. Half of you are on the
DefCon-Secure wifi network.


We're continuing to research the issue with iPhones / iPads on the network.
We're currently testing a potential resolution and will update you when we have
confirmed it.

DefCon has opened. The network is functioning.

Two issues you should be aware of...

  1. - Sorry, we forgot to ask DT to put this in his
    public DNS servers (fail!) - so that's happening now. It works from the
    internal network ok. Or from the external network you can use until DNS propogates.

  2. We've noticed some mobile devices (mostly ipads) are having issues renewing
    their IP after coming out of sleep. We're checking it out and seeing if we can
    adjust some things on the network side that may help. We think it has to do with
    having so many AP's that clients are talking longer than expected to settle on
    which AP to associate with.

Otherwise, if you have any issues with the network, email us, or let dispatch
know so we can check into things!

Had a long day yesterday - we caught up on things and got things to about 80%

The understanding of DefCon hit Jesse...

"DefCon is all about drinking all day and staying out until 0600 and then
getting up at 0700"

This morning we're running around, getting everything patched up, switches
dropped, wifiz re-verified. Everything is on-track to be finished by the end of

The first day of setup ended about midnight last night. The Inter-webs came up
quickly after we had breakfast. The NOC is live & fully functional. The Queen
Victoria Pub doth rocketh. Our WiFiz got delayed, but since it's the same
(physical) setup as last year we just need to unpack & go. App servers are up &
functional. All & all, things are coming along nicely. We have to be
completely done by EOD Wednesday (which is anytime before 8a Thursday). The
contest area is still going to be hard spot to network up, but the hotel guys
are doing their best to make it easy(er) on us.

Day Two starts now.

Two days before the DCNET staff arrive in Vegas.

Everything's ready.

Most things are packed up.

  • PC's
  • Servers
  • spare servers
  • cables
  • switches (old & new)
  • radios

Internet connection is already dropped & active.

Hotel is pulling cable already.

WiFi's setup

  • we setup 802.1x/WPA2
  • now someone's going to talk at Blackhat about a possible sploit?
  • Bah!

DCTV's rarin' to go.

DefCon Mobile Edition is ready for production.

What's left?

Oh yeah, last minute requests :)

I hope the Queen Victoria Pub in the Riv took my advise and stocked up for us!
(I warned the owners last month).

We're all really excited about this year - it's gonna rock!!

WiFi self-reg is all set, tested, validated.

Data for all speakers, con-events, and DJ's are loaded into the World Domination
Database (thanks to Neil & Nikita for providing the data) - the back-end for the
DefCon18 Mobile Edition agenda. Still have to load contests once I get some
more infoz. t3ase continues his work on CSS-ifying DC-ME (no pressure!).

Plus, Mac & Videoman have the core infrastructure laid out & base configs

There's not much more left to do other than show up & hook it all together. Two
weeks today until the DefCon Networking Team lands in Vegas. Not long now, Papa

effffn & I stayed up late last night & got the secure wifi configuration
working. I want to do some cleanup on the radius config files, but we have
working WPA2 + 802.1x setup!

I'm setting up "self registration" so attendees can create their own logins for
the system today. I hope Neil doesn't mind I'm stealing his CSS :)

We got tweeted! Well, it's not as being slashdotted (don't get any ideas!) -
but thanks for DT or Neil for giving us the shout-out!

20 days until DC18 starts!

It's definitely going to be an interesting year with floorplan changes, wifi
changes, focus on DCTV & a/v streaming (shouts to DJ Great Scott for being so
easy to work with, btw!). And the DefCon Confessional is BACK!

We're even jumping in and providing a "Mobile Edition" agenda webapp that will
be available locally. We're testing against iPhone, Android, and Blackberries.
Look in the program for details! (you can login and have some FourSquare-like
functionality if you want to keep up with your friends and who's seeing what
talks, going to what bar).

DefCon18 - 40 days away.

Bandwidth contract has been signed. Let's just say, between you & mean, that
it's unprecedented bandwidth (WRT DefCon).

We have a lot going on this year, preparing for your use & pleasure. Let me
catch you up...

We're planning on having a 'secure' segment of the wireless this year. Designed
so you can get on and be (as sure as possible) that no one's sniffing your
traffic and you won't get jacked up.

We know 3G is getting saturated, so you need to feel OK putting your phone or
device on the net just to get to the Internet (and yes, more bandwidth for
everyone!)(How much more? waiting on pricing so we can determine).
WPA2-Enterprise with unique user/pass for everyone will secure the wireless, and
then a dedicated hard (not virtual) trunk straight to the firewall & out.
Interactions between clients will be prohibited on that network.

DefConTV - a new & revised streaming system, with multiple channels. The DefCon
Confessional box will be back, and we'll stream the videos we get from there
(well, some of them :). As well we'll stream the DJ's at the direction of DJ
Great Scott at the parties.

We did promise to dig up the firewall configs & post them for peer-review &
feedback. It seems that /someone/ didn't archive them properly, so he's having
to go dig up the servers out of storage to pull them off the box. :)

Looking to be a good year!

We wanted to wish everyone a very Happy New Year (now that January is almost

We still owe posting configs for peer review - apologies that it hasn't been
done yet. Following DefCon each year everyone tends to go into hibernation
until the New Year. But as we easy into the new year DC18 planning starts up.
We'll try to get that done real soon for you.

DT & I have talked about trying some new interactivity at DC18. Don't know what
that means? Yeah, us either. So let's all think up some ideas of how to get
people involved at the con, and even outside of the con (for those who can't
make it this year).