* Posts by Gerhard den Hollander

179 posts • joined 26 Feb 2007


From book shop to tat bazaar to cloud behemoth to grocer, what's Amazon up to now? Augmented-reality hairstyles

Gerhard den Hollander

A cut above the rest

Hairkut 2000

DBA heroes don't always wear capes. Sometimes they just have a bunch of forgotten permissions

Gerhard den Hollander

> A rare breed in the boss stakes, for sure. Then again, this is his story after all.

Very nicely put ... well done

How do you save an ailing sales pitch? Just burn down the client's office with their own whiteboard

Gerhard den Hollander

Re: Lies

I was wondering the same thing ...

unless the whiteboard was accepting only 110V and there was supposed to be a transformer in between to take the 220 and downgrade it to 11 and with only the cable they fed it directly 220 ?

And yes, I have accidentally blown up a PC ones that was sent back to our office from a remote location that used 110 and I forgot to check the setting before plugging it into 220

but other than the prongy bits at the end I've never had an issue with cables ...

and I've had a few colleagues who moved from a 110V country to overhere, and they've all happily used plugconverters and extension cords without any of their electornic toys going bang

This product is terrible. Can you deliver it in 20 years’ time when it becomes popular?

Gerhard den Hollander

I just want to thank you for introducing the word ``zob'' to my vocabulary ..

Ah ... zodd off you silly english k-nig-hts ...

Dutch officials say Donald Trump really did protect his Twitter account with MAGA2020! password

Gerhard den Hollander

Because people (used to) travel ?

Because people use a VPN ?

e.g.: while working from home I need to connect to the work network through a VPN.

Because f this the internet thinks I'm in France (which leads to many advertisements showing up in French) when I disconnect I'm in the netherlands (which leads to most advertisements being in English )

The VPN is soemtimes a bit flakey , which means that in the span of an hour Twitter would see me connecting from just south of Paris then 10mins later from north of the dutch-belgian border, than back to France

For extra git & shiggles I could enable opera's privacy mode VPN which bounces me around the world at random

Marine archaeologists catch a break on the bottom of the Baltic Sea: A 75-year-old Enigma Machine

Gerhard den Hollander

Re: Old typewriter

Cryptomonicon by Neal Stepehnson discusses this (and other issues) as well as spinning a yarn about cryptocurrency.

How to sink the german convoys without the germans getting the hint that you may have broken their cipher ....

A 1970s magic trick: Take a card, any card, out of the deck and watch the IBM System/370 plunge into a death spiral

Gerhard den Hollander

Re: Broken NFS

I remember a similar issue when you had the axe-murderers file system mounted over NFS ... it had some funny behaviour where a folder with the word test in it would show up as a flat file once mounted over NFS

You only live twice: Once to start the installation, and the other time to finish it off

Gerhard den Hollander


I've hand carried 2 shuttle PCs (shoebox sized PCs that were all the rage in the early 2000s ... at least with one of our BMs) along with a VPN firewall along with my own laptop (all as carry on luggage) through 3 countries in the Middle East and Africa (the kind of countries where alcohol is no allowed) (the joys of a round trip where they were needed at the penultimae destination) without a hitch, but arriving at the final destination I got held at gunpoint (the only time in my life I've stared down the barrel of a gun) because they wanted to inspect the wallet with 2 dozen CDs I'd brought along with me ...

All obviously self-burned, all backup copies of the original installation media with the product keys written on them with black marker ... and while we did have volume licenses for all these products, and so these were technically probably not illegal i was not really looking forward to having to explain this to a big guy with an even bigger gun and an even bigger moustache

Turned out the only thing they were checking was if I wasn't smuggling dirty movies into the country , and after going trough the ``no it's not movies, it's software '' line a few times the guy waved me through ....

Thankfully Dubai did allow the serving of beer in Hotels ...

Microsoft leaks 6.5TB in Bing search data via unsecured Elastic server. *Insert 'Wow... that much?' joke here*

Gerhard den Hollander

Re: Really?

Bear was vansihed , exit, chased by Antigonus ....

Typical '80s IT: Good idea leads to additional duties, without extra training or pay, and a nuked payroll system

Gerhard den Hollander

We make backups ...

As the saying goes: "Oh yes, we make backups. Restore ? Nobody said anything about restoring, we just make backups ...."

Funny, that: Handy script for wiping directories is capable of wreaking havoc beyond a miscreant's wildest dreams

Gerhard den Hollander

Re: My contribution ...

Had a variation of that happen to me ages ago.

cd /tmp

rm -rf *

Noticed some files refused to go

Realised those needed superuser permissions

su -

rm -rf *

Realised that this was taking rather longer than expected

Noticed the - after the su....

Realised the backup tape was fortunately still in the tapedrive but ejected, which indicates last night's backup had run.....

Managed to stop the Rm in time to keep the system alive enough I could restore from tape

Hidden Windows Terminal goodies to check out: Retro mode that emulates blurry CRT display – and more

Gerhard den Hollander

Or you know, you use tabs to connect to different remote machines, and then run screen in all of them ...

Then again, what do I know ... I installed cygwin/X and use different Xterms (each with a slightly different colored font) to connect to different remote linux boxes ..

and run screen in all of them ... ever since I discovered screen in 1992 (or so, give or take a year) it has been my multiplexer of choice ... plus the fact that your session stays alive if your connection drops ..

back in the day when you would loose the connection if your wife would pick up the phone while you were using the same phone line to connect your VT100 to the office machine ....

Glad those days are over :)

This PDP-11/70 was due to predict an election outcome – but no one could predict it falling over

Gerhard den Hollander


We used to have an office in Woking, next to the trainstation. 4 times an hour, whenever the train left the station, it would send powerspikes into our building. You would see the lights dim and then brighten before getting back to normal. Same powerspike would sometimes take down a computer, which could usually be fixed by a reboot. Even after supplying most machines with a UPS the spike would sometimes be too strong for the spike-limiter (or whatever it was called) in the UPS and take down the machine.

In other days, we had dual monitor setups for most of our users, even in the mid-90s ... big 24inch sun monitors that could do 1920x1200. When you turned on both at once, they would both go through their de-gaussing step at the same time, and could happily be bouncing of each other for minutes before one of them would give up and they would both stabilize.

Even more fun after a powerfailure, and you restored power only to remember slightly too late that you hadnt switched off all the monitors. The powersurge of more than a dozen of these beasts starting up would immediately trip the breakers

Publishers signed up to Apple's premium News may be less than 'appy to discover the iGiant snatching readers

Gerhard den Hollander

Re: Walls

Have an upvote for managing to include BS Johnson

I got 99 problems, and all of them are your fault

Gerhard den Hollander

Re: Rudest, Dumbest - same thing no?

I used to do that

send an email saying "Your email is now fixed"

than went and fixed their email

The ``you're email is now fixed'' would automagically appear to indicate the email was indeed fixed

(and if it didn't I hadn't fixed it properly)

Side benefit.

This worked even better if what I was fixing was something like a sendmail.cf , which when fixed meant I could go and have a coffee while the user would get the email saying things were fine again :)

PC printer problems and enraged execs: When the answer to 'Hand over that floppy disk' is 'No'

Gerhard den Hollander

Re: "The IT manager turned up clutching a clipboard"

If he is included in the calculation, it's very easy for everyone else to be above average, as he's dragging the average down tremendously

Overload: A one-way ticket to a madman's situation

Gerhard den Hollander


Create a text file called do_not_run_me.sh

make it's contents $*&$*$

Linux fans thrown a bone in one Windows 10 build while Peppa Pig may fly if another is ready in time for this year

Gerhard den Hollander

Re: Linux developers

For Linux developers missing the blues teen there is, of course, xscreensaver.

Building it from source is considered a bit of a rite of passage.

Building it from source, and getting the full suite working, including the xscreensaver-demo is not easy ( until you've done it once)

BOFH: We must... have... beer! Only... cure... for... electromagnetic fields

Gerhard den Hollander

Re: Irradiated Haggis

I'd hate to spoil it ...


Y2K, Windows NT4 Server and Notes. It's a 1990s Who, Me? special

Gerhard den Hollander

Hold the power button ....

I learned relatively quickly that certain brands if server hardware would not poweroff on the push of the button but on the release.

Back in the NT4 days I remember having to get a colleague ( who was within shouting distance) logging in on the console and doing a graceful shutdown while i kept the powerbutton depressed.

To be fair i’ve returned the favor a few times as well.

When someone asks can you powerdown The server, always ask which of the servers we’ve just been discussing he meant ....,

BOFH: Oh, go on, let's flush all that legacy tech down the toilet

Gerhard den Hollander

Reading this on the toilet

Little knowing that Graham the dispatcher is now a poo-smelling smear in the middle of the road because he forgot to take your latest memo with him."


Which is why i print them, rather than take an ipad.

Must watch: GE's smart light bulb reset process is a masterpiece... of modern techno-insanity

Gerhard den Hollander

Re: What about if, during the fourth cycle, you panicked and turned it off after just seven seconds?

... which would be a great opportunity to throw in a NINE NEIN NINE NEIN joke ...

Oh Snapd! Gimme-root-now security bug lets miscreants sock it to your Ubuntu boxes

Gerhard den Hollander

Re: snapd and systemd

Have an upvote for referencing Bergholt Stuttley ....

Cheeky cheesemaker fails to copyright how things taste

Gerhard den Hollander

Witte wieven

Witte wieven translates to white women, not wise women. It’s actually a nickname/folktale referencing the fog from the canals that, when rising up across the meadows looks ( in the dark ) like white women climbing out of the canal coming to drag the weary walker in the canal.

Many a walker in the 1800s who had fortified himself before a long cold walk would encounter these white women and depending on his level of fortification may have ended up in the drink.

Linux in 2016 catches up to Solaris from 2004

Gerhard den Hollander

Re: True but but hardware

I've had a softspot for Sun ever since I saw the knightrider lights on the 3/50. Unfortunately in the late 90s sun lost it when their top of the line videocards were being outperformed by a ridiculous margin by a linux box + top of the line NVidia card. And the linux+videocard cost a third of what the sun videocard alone cost. And when in early 2000 the amd and Intel CPUs started outperforming the Solaris machines by similar margins (at least for the software we developed) it became a matter of years before all our clients had switched to linux.

Sad. But if a 60K machines takes a month to run a job, and a pc you buy for 2k at the shop around the corner runs the job in 2 weeks you have lost.

Esp since installing linux, loading our software and loading the data took less then a day.

Google calendar TITSUP

Gerhard den Hollander

calendar and office?

Time to Don a tinfoil hat,

Office365 and google calendar down at the same time?

Dutch court says BREIN should get e-book uploaders' names

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Facebook, WhatsApp farewell BlackBerry

Gerhard den Hollander

Re: Competition problem?

BBM competes with facebook/whatsapp about just as well as BB10 competes with Android/iOS.

I havent received a BBM message in months , and if you dont count the 2 total strangers who wanted to invite me, i havent received a BBM message in over 2 years ...

Gerhard den Hollander

Re: More worring

webwhatsapp is one of those new features that I dodnt know about, didnt care about, until i tried it

Who knows what else they may be trying / thinking off

Android on Windows is disruptive because neither Microsoft nor Google can stop it

Gerhard den Hollander

Re: Right...

From the page you pointed to:

[ -- start snip -- ]

This isn’t the fastest way to run Android apps on your PC — BlueStacks is faster if all you want to do is play Temple Run 2 or another Android game on your Windows PC. However, Android-x86 provides access to a complete Android system in a virtual machine. It’s a great way to get more familiar with a standard Android system or just experiment with it like you would experiment with a virtual machine running any other operating systems.

[ -- end snip -- ]

so performance is one reason ....

Sony snags Spotify for streaming music to Playstation gamers

Gerhard den Hollander

Re: Hyperbole

set your cellphone to spotify connect

have it so that spotify is full screen

have the prev,pause,next buttons on your screen

whenever you want to change th music, reach down to where you know the cellphone is, and hit next ..

kinda like hitting the audio shortcut keys on your keyboard while playing a game

Gerhard den Hollander

bluray ?

Would this service also be available on Sony's blu-ray line ?

Some (all?) of them are basically just PS3's without the gaming bits anyway.


Sound and battery: 20 portable Bluetooth speakers

Gerhard den Hollander

Re: TL:DR....

the philips bt3500 is stereo, though you dont hear that much stereo seperation, as the speakers are very close together.

I'm a bit surprised at the #80 prive tag, as I got it for e60.

Better osund quality than my laptop speakers, plus it has a built in mic, so can double as a cheapo conference phone means Im happy with it (and since I bought a battery pack for my phone ages ago, that can also charge the speakers, the 5 hour battery life isnt much of a problem for me .

But, to each his own :)

BOFH: Capo di tutti capi, bah. I'm having CHICKEN JALFREZI

Gerhard den Hollander

meet the new boss...

... same as the old boss?

Will the bofh be fooled again?

WAITER! There's a Flappy Bird in my Lollipop!

Gerhard den Hollander

Re: So it scrolls from right-to-left ...

kinda fitting, as legions of youtube uploaders use a mirror imaged version of their upload (say a soccer world cup match highlights reel or ...) to bypass the google (c) checks in yootoob .

'Windows 9' LEAK: Microsoft's playing catchup with Linux

Gerhard den Hollander

Re: FFS!

wasnt it tvwm (Toms Virtual Window Manager ) ?

OpenLook on Solaris had an olvm in the early 90s

I started using fvwm in late 1993 because I wanted something on Linux that gave me what I had been using on Solaris (or maybe even SunOS).

So, from personal experience, I can say this has been around for at least 20+ years

The windows ``desktops'' solution does not even come close to the flexibility and ease of use of a real VWM

Amazon's Spotify-for-books: THE TRUTH

Gerhard den Hollander

printed ?

The service will cover printed books ?

Really ?

how ?

[insert joke about how something should have thought of this before, and call it something creative like library]

DUDE, WHERE'S MY CAR? New leccy BMWs have flimsy password security – researcher

Gerhard den Hollander

Re: Beamer?

And it's a bummer when it gets stolen

Hello Moto... It's the Nokia Lumia 630

Gerhard den Hollander


What is the deal with whatsapp?

Last I heard you had to pay for whatsapp on winpho?

That got followed by someone telling me whatsapp was dropped for winpho 8.1?

Kids these days use whatsapp more than anything else on their phone

Why faff with a piddly microSD when there's a 2TB vault tempting your selfie-stuffed mobe?

Gerhard den Hollander

interesting ....

what would be eally interesting if these wifi connectable devices wouold also show up as a UPnP device

Reg slips claws across Nokia's sexy sixties handsets, fondles flagship too

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QUIDOCALYPSE: Blighty braces for £100 MILLION cost of new £1 coin

Gerhard den Hollander

do away with cash ... plot

Maybe a good excuse to get rid of all those pesky coin operated machines, and switch to credit/debit/NFC machines .. and screw all those without debit cards, tourists with incompatible cards

worked really well over here ....

Windows Phone beats BLACKBERRY in mobe OS popularity stakes

Gerhard den Hollander

care to back up your claim that winpho is actually more secure than the alternatives ?

BlackBerry brings back call, end keys, touchpad to Q20 keyboard cutie

Gerhard den Hollander


You need to sideload snap if you want to access the googlplay store. If you can find the raw apk file, you can just doubleclick it.

2 caveats:

1) corporate phones usually have a security policy that disables debug mode, so no sideloading possible

2) some android apps rely on the Google play api (e.g. For in game purchases) and Google play api is not supported on bb10.

So Google maps will work fine, plants vs zombies 2 fails to start.

Mozilla takes wraps off 25 DOLLAR Firefox OS smartphone

Gerhard den Hollander

want one ....

Seriously .. for this kind of money, I want one .. just to use as a spare phone in case my real one dies .. in fact, I might want an additional 4 (one for each of the kids, and a hot spare in case they drop one in the loo).

Yes! New company smartphones! ... But I don't WANT one

Gerhard den Hollander

BB10 Re: If you want answers

As a recent owner of a Q10 (to replace a dead bold 9x00) I have to say this device is sweet.

The android compatibility layer is great, some of my favorite apps are now available as .apk's (endomorphpo, spotify, google maps).

The new UI takes some getting used to, but is actually very easy to use.

It has a physical keyboard ... honestly, if you do more than a few emaisl a day, physical keyboards are soo much better than touchscreens.

It finally has a decent webbrowser

And if you have a BES server as a corporate email gateway, honestly, there is no alternative worth trying for more than a few days

Japanese fanboi first in queue for, er, iPhone 6

Gerhard den Hollander

Re: This is old news...

Too late

... sent from my iPhone 8 ...

Cicada 3301: The web's toughest and most creepy crypto-puzzle is BACK

Gerhard den Hollander


I would still go for a recruiting job ... kinda like how the brit intel agency in WWII found people who were good at crosswords , and used that as a selection starting point.

Spy agencies need peole who you can tell, we know that messages are being swapped through the XXXXX messageboard, without them going ``yeah, Duh .. it's a message board, what do you expect '' and in stead find the steganosaurs

Gerhard den Hollander

Re: Its simple

even if you screw up, it's still a job for life .... just a very short one ...

'Leaked' iPhone 6 pics will make cool fanbois WEEP - it's a PHABLET

Gerhard den Hollander

Re: I don't care what it looks like

I'm lost ... you say the music is being reencoded every time you have to sync the phone ?

Then why not just reencode to VBR-mp3s and leave the lossless items on your harddrive ?



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