‘Hello, World!’

Meetup – April 23, 2015

Meetup Notes

Spring is the season of new things and first steps. For a new scripter or even an experienced scripter learning a new language, the first code he learns to write is traditionally “Hello, World!”. The syntax in any language is usually very simple but the result is gratifying. OK, Step 1—done. And it’s not so hard. (Insert song from “Santa Claus is Coming to Town” here.)

We’re returning to scripting again for April’s meetup but with a slight twist. Our presenter covers the why and what more than the how. See our agenda below.

JAMF Software Town Hall

And speaking of new things, our April venue is brand new. Like, just-finished-this-week brand new! JAMF Software’s renovated Town Hall is large enough for the entire Minneapolis office to gather together for its weekly Monday morning all company updates.

The space has a retractable main screen and two hanging TVs on either side of the room, each with its own Apple TV for wireless screen sharing. And the ceiling holds 24 speakers connected to a wireless microphone system.

We’re happy to be one of the first groups outside JAMF Software to visit the new area in downtown Minneapolis’ Grain Exchange building. If you were able to attend our February meetup then you already know where to go.

Only your time.

Date & time:
Thursday, April 23rd
5:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.

JAMF Software
301 4th Avenue South
10th Floor
Minneapolis, MN 55415

Off-street parking is available in the Jerry Haaf Memorial Parking Ramp next to the Grain Exchange building and across the street in the Gateway Ramp across the street.


5:00-5:15 p.m. — Arrival and socializing

5:15-5:45 — Introductions, about JAMF Software

This is Bryson’s home turf and he’s graciously agreed to be our host of hosts. After a round of quick introductions, he’ll tell us a little about what’s up with JAMF Software and maybe give us a tour of the office.

5:45-6:15 p.m. — Brad and John lead an open discussion of current news and they’ll recap our last quarter’s worth of meetups. If you’ve learned something new from a meetup or used some of the information you’ve gathered from the meetups, we’d love to have that feedback.

We learn from each other and this is a chance for our group to discuss what’s happening in the Mac admin world.

  • Rootpipe: Hidden backdoor to root privileges in OS X
    Emil Kvarnhammar reported on his TrueSec blog he found a hidden backdoor API that enabled an admin user to escalate to root privileges without authentication. The vulnerability has been in OS X since at least 2011 (when OS X 10.7 was released), however, Apple only patched Yosemite with the 10.10.3 update released this month. According to Kvarnhammar, Apple made no plans for patching earlier versions of OS X.

  • Apple releases OS X 10.10.3 and iOS 8.3
    Cupertino addressed several security issues with its OS X 10.10.3 and iOS 8.3 updates in April followed by Security Update 2015-004. iOS 8.3 blocked access to some third-party desktop file managers such as iBrowse, iExplorer and iFunBox. Some developers have worked around the issue already. But this may be a precedent for future updates potentially leaving jailbreaking the only way to manage an iOS device via third-party tools.
  • Return of Rootpipe: Just when we thought Rootpipe was patched…
    Patrick Wardle on his Objective-See blog reported he found another way to expose Rootpipe on OS X 10.10.3. He said he provided details to Apple.
  • JAMF Software announces JAMF IT Open Source project
    JAMF Software’s IT department announced it’s posting its internally-created scripts, code, and utilities in an open source format for everyone to use. https://github.com/jamfit

  • WWDC 2015: June 8-12
    In less than a week, Apple announced its World Wide Developers Conference for 2015 and chose 5000 registered developers via lottery to attend. Tim Cook usually presents a developer keynote the first day, which is where the public learns more about what’s “Cooking” (I know, I know—I’m sorry) at Apple.

6:15-6:35 p.m. — Bio-break and dinner

JAMF Software is providing pizza, beer and pop. Who says there’s no such thing as a free dinner?

Jacob Salmela6:35-7:35 p.m. — Main presentation

Jacob Salmela with Hopkins High School presents:

Under Cover Of Shell (Scripting)

You do not need to know anything about scripting to enjoy this presentation. Instead of providing detailed code snippets, this presentation covers real-life use cases for scripting that I currently use in my environment. These examples could be useful for both education and the private sector.

I will tell you about scripts I made that:

  • grant apps access to assistive devices
  • fix unique problems
  • remove a guest network
  • enforce the wallpaper
  • re-index GarageBand loops
  • and much more!

Most of the examples use less than 10 lines of code.  For those script-gurus, I also provide a few advanced examples (30+ lines of code) to do some really cool stuff like log commands entered while in Single-user mode.

I will also discuss how scripting can help you go from a reactive mentality (putting out fires) to a proactive one (eliminate problems before they arise) using Pareto Analysis.  This will allow you to pursue your organization’s mission and make yourself available to work on a crisis.

7:35-7:45 p.m. — Programming for Everybody (Python)

Brian is currently taking University of Michigan’s Programming for Everybody (Python) through Coursera. This is a free instructor-led online course teaching the basics of programming using Python. We’ll ask him to present his experience so far. A few of us are enrolling in the next available course starting in June. Study group, anyone?

7:45-8:00 p.m. — Wrap-up

After the meetup we’ll head over to the Crooked Pint to continue the conversation. If you can keep your evening open, we’d love to have time to mingle and get to meet everyone.

We’ll also announce details about our May meeting including date, time and place.

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