Saturday, August 04, 2007

HP - Phone Home

A few months ago, we were in Costco and saw a HP PhotoSmart C6150 all in one Printer, scanner, copier, fax with wifi, media reader and all kinds of bells and whistles . Whoohoo, color us impressed, so we snapped it up to take the place of our aging Canon i560.

The printer has been great. At first I was kinda worried about the small ink cartridges, but so far so good. I like the scanner, and it's got good linux support - important for me, not so much for Laura who only uses windows. Anyway, as I said, we were happy with the printer. Then I installed an Endian Firewall on our network. It's a nice, easy to use firewall based on Smoothwall. I downloaded the CD image, and pressed an old PIII 600 into service checking packets and denying access to the baddies. Anyway, I am getting to the point, I promise.

Tonight, I was perusing the firewall logs, and I noticed that the IP address I had assigned to the printer was making http connections to

From - 38 packets
To - 38 packets
Service: http (tcp/80) (ulogd[1177]: SQUID) - 38 packets

Hold the phone, that's a routable IP address. Why is my printer making outside connections? So I did a whois on that IP address, and it belongs to HP.

chris% whois

OrgName: Hewlett-Packard Company
Address: 3000 Hanover Street
City: Palo Alto
StateProv: CA
PostalCode: 94304
Country: US

So I go look into the Squid logfile on my firewall and see that the printer keeps connecting to
Hmm, ain't that intrusive. Well, thankfully, I can ban my printers IP address in the new firewall and stop that nonsense.