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screaming tty
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[Unix] A terminal line which spews an infinite number of
random characters at the operating system. This can happen if
the terminal is either disconnected or connected to a
powered-off terminal but still enabled for login;
misconfiguration, misimplementation, or simple bad luck can
start such a terminal screaming. A screaming tty or two can
seriously degrade the performance of a vanilla Unix system;
the arriving "characters" are treated as userid/password pairs
and tested as such. The Unix password encryption algorithm is
designed to be computationally intensive in order to foil
brute-force crack attacks, so although none of the logins
succeeds; the overhead of rejecting them all can be