* Posts by Stu_The_Jock

102 publicly visible posts • joined 18 Oct 2007


Datacenter migration plan missed one vital detail: The leaky roof


Major leak

A company I have worked closely with for the last 10 years or so used to have their offices where the original owner had installed a small 10mx5m) swimming pool, on the TOP floor.

As years went by, the original occupants left and new firms moved in on various levels. One firm operated a data centre, with servers for a number of major clients. All was fine, until late one night the swimming pool sprang a leak, and around 75 cu m of chlorinated water ran down, through the joints in the concrete structure into the data centre directly below the pool.

Turned out that when they rented the space, no mention was ever made of facilities above, or they would have thought twice about locating a server cluster there.

While the data centre relocated, the pool was repaired and refilled, although to the best of my knowledge, despite it being filled, heated and the filters running, it never gets used as a pool, probably as the part of the floor that was the changin rooms had been converted to open plan office space, with glass walls out towards the hallway by the lifts.

BOFH: Where do you think you are going with that toner cartridge?


Re: Too Often...

Franking machine manufacturer took sales inhouse, and started calling our existing customers offering to swap out their existing machines for a much lower monthly price... as no one told us it wasn't until customers complained their existing lease agreement invoices were still arriving did we find out the news sales chump had agreed to buy out their contract, but never checked details. One machine was 6 months into a 5 yr agreement... cost them an absolute fortune as even if the machines had nil cost they'd never recoup the buy out price.

BOFH: Will the last one out switch off the printer?


Still home working ?

Are the BOFH and the rest of the company STILL home working ? Have HR noticed a lack of unusual incidents resulting in the unfortunate deaths of middle and senior management in the last months ?

Police drone fliers' wings clipped to prevent them bumping into real aircraft


Re: Mixed measurements

So you're saying if you're on a plane (once they are flying again) and both the flight crew had the fish for dinner, don't rely on a man who flew a drone to get the plane down ?

Who says HMRC hasn't got a sense of humour? Er, 65 million Brits


Re: No, it's NOT The Same The Whole World Over...

So true. I actually asked my employer to pay a little extra each month to pretty much guarantee a refund every year. Never yet found anything inaccurate on my Norwegian tax return, even down to the balance on my store loyalty cards. I always buy something expensive on a credit card in December that work will pay for, just for that little dexra reduction.

When the IT department speaks, users listen. Or face the consequences


Data ? Backup ? No need

Previously had the "pleasure" to support PCs for a chain of pharmacies. All machines had a build in back-up system, which copied all patient prescriptions. Later model PCs had 2 hard drives, and the store manager was told clearly to run the daily backup from the desktop icon every day at close of business, and the weekly one friday evening or saturday. (Daily took 30 seconds, weekly about 10 minutes as ig made a full hard drive snapshot.)

The usual call for a non-booting PC comes in on a Tuesday, drive had failed, no problem, we'll restore from Friday's image and then add in yesterday's data set.... Pharmacist looks slightly pale. Fire up recovery system, last weekly backup was from when we installed it 30 months earlier, not great, he'll just have to let al, the software updates since sort themselves out.

Last daily backup, 24 months earlier.... he then has the choi e to write off 2 years of prescription data, or buy back the faulty drive to send off for data recovery at his own cost..

Google forks out $2.1bn for Fitbit – and promises not to exploit all that delicious health data to sling ads (honest)


Re: In 6 months time.....

" They don't however include other sports so if you cycle five hours a day then it doesn't register it..." Have you considered that this is due to the fact that as an insurer, they know about the way drivers tend to drive around cyclists, and therefore see it as an an increased risk of one of their other policy holders having a claim against them when they hit a cyclist who "suddenly appeared from nowhere" (but I wasn't looking at my phone, or "Couldn't see for the low sun" (yet continued to drive at full speed), and of the course the old SMIDLSCSY (Sorry mate I Didn't Look So Couldn't See You)

Boffins blow hot and cold over li-ion battery that can cut leccy car recharging to '10 mins'


It can't be done, they say

For all those doubting it can be done, look at Norway. Last month over 50% of new car sales were electric cars, and that ratio is rising month on month.

Most out of town filling stations now have several fast chargers, with cusfomers who join the provider as a member getting better prices than drop in customers.. signing up usually takes 2 mins and there are 3 or 4 main providers.

30 mins down the road from me there's a Tesla charging station with 10 or so fast chargers.

New blocks of flats with parking are required to be wired for charging, actual chargers are not required but the cabling should be ready for easy installs.

Supermarkets and shopping centres are adding charging points, both fast and nofmal charge options.

Pitney Bowes: Can we be frank? Ransomware has borked our dead-tree post systems


Re: "to pay or not to pay"

Given these infections often lie hidden for a while, quietly trying to spread across the network, how far back would you go to ensure a clean backup ? Pick the wrong one and you get re-ransomwared again at a later date.


Re: I'm sorry for them but it's nice to see .............

Clearly depends where in teh world you are, as their Norwegian arm has always been pretty customer friendly.

'Six' in the city: Kiwi sportswear shop telly beamed X-rated flicks for hours over weekend


"hacked" as in the same hack that a local driving school here in Norway had a few months ago (with the same result and choice of viewing material, beside one of the towns busiest roads) No one had thought to cover the IR sensor and some joker stands outside the window with a remote for that make of TV, and starts a playlist or a long video .. I believe some mobiles can also do this.

Margin mugs: A bank paid how much for a 2m Ethernet cable? WTF!


Re: Not just business

Last attempt to sell me insurance was on my phone . . a Samsung Xcover 4, with extra tough glass, reinforced frame, and totally water and dust resistand (per specs in store) . . so with a straight face I asked him exactly what circumstances he thought I might need the extended warranty (given Norwegian concumer law is rather better in favour of the customer than is many countries) where the guarantee (2 yrs), the phone's own defences, or existing household policies wouldn't help, and given the excess + cost of 2 years cover was 40% more than the cash price of the phone he reluctantly frowned and agreed.

A real head-scratcher: Tech support called in because emails 'aren't showing timestamps'


Re: Lawyers not wanting paper?

Lawyers in my experience DO NOT print 3 copies of stuff. The secretaries print one copy, then load the entire stack into the feeder on the copier (making sure to not stack it neatly, or adjust the side guides to hold it straight)

They then make a copy, and hand the original to their boss.

The copy is then roughly piled on the document feeder and copied.

Copy 1 handed off to someone else and copy 2 loaded onto feeder and copy 3 made....


Cue call to copier supplier to complain that the copies are becoming poor quality, and not printing straight on the paper.

Ransomware drops the Lillehammer on Norsk Hydro: Aluminium giant forced into manual mode after systems scrambled


Now if they'd only had their servers all safely encased in the cellars of their 1940s factory outside Rjukan it would all have been OK, as even a fleet of 140 US bombers failed to reach into....

What happens when a Royal Navy warship sees a NATO task force headed straight for it? A crash course in Morse


Maybe someone could get the Americans "helping" on the bridge of the Norwegian Frigate before Christmas a chance to read this . . . Huge amounts of radar systems and they ran into a fully lit up tankship as "they thought it was the nearby oil processing plant" . . Probably as well it wasn't.

Sticking with one mobile provider gets you... Oh. Price rises, big exit fees, and lovely, lovely lock-in


Fleeced for a phone ? No ta.

Norway's had a split pricing system for the 12 years I've lived here (although I never use it as I generally don't change phone and contract at the same time, just because it'snot always suitable or convenient for me)

Sign up for new phone and pick a contract. XXX kroner/month for the contract for calls and data, plus XXkr/m for (generally) 2 years for the phone.

After the phone is paid off, you drop to the basic monthly fees.

As for the loyal customer penalty, that'll be when they call me up a month or so before the contract lock in is due to expire and offer me (generally) either a 15% discount on my monthly bill, or a free data upgrade for the same price. Agree to 12 months and we'll talk again next year. That agreement covers both my mobile, my son's and our 2 tablets on a data only shared plan.

Support whizz 'fixes' screeching laptop with a single click... by closing 'malware-y' browser tab


Technical equipment, user, not quite so.

Back around the turn of the millennium, a regular customer called to report a dead printer. Job duly handed to me as the local techie. Call customer for the usual pre-visit checks and talk to the insurance firm's IT manager.

Machine dead, "Have you confirmed it's correctly plugged in ?"

"Of course I have" she barks down phone...

"No problem, I'll be in tomorrow morning first thing with a new power supply"

next day, arrive, escorted to machine, glance at machine, test with power switch (proper hard switch, no soft switches then), dead . . check power lead firmly inserted, yep, trace cable back to socket, turn on switch on socket - machine whirs into life.

Never again did she doubt me and answer a query without going to double check.

'Your computer has a virus' cold call con artists on the rise – Microsoft


After over 100 of these calls over a year or so I was getting fed up, Lately they have been calling into Norway and spoofing Norwegian numbers,including at one point "112" the Police emergency number, I seem to have found a "cure" for them.

I'd bought a Flea-bay special "bike horn" that turned out to a piezo siren (smoke alarm on steroids, this thing WAS loud) , so I decided it was no use on the bike (my voice gets more attention) so when "Michael" from Microsoft called (from Delhi) I spoke softly to get him to run up his headset, then gave him a full blast of 15 seconds... then listened in to hear "He have a f***ing siren" . . not heard from them since :)

BOFH: How long does it take to complete Friday's lager-related tasks?



As a field engineer, our bosses decided not to follow the copy a local firm providing engineers for telecoms work with GPS tracking in the vans, and automatic reporting of where and when the vehicles stopped. The idea being to save engineers filling out logs for the vans with mileages etc.

What they failed to realise, until they dragged the first "victim" into a meeting to discuss his undocumented visits to non-customer sites and showed the logs from his van, was that every time the van engine did it's auto-stop/start thing at traffic lights, the tracking software registered a "STOP" and assumed it was the van being parked . . . None of the bosses in the chains had spotted all the "unscheduled stops" were in areas with heavy traffic and with traffic lights . . . DOH !

BT claims almost-gigabit connections over COPPER WIRE


Re: WHY WHY WHY WHY !!!!!!

Future proofing should't have to lock into one service provider. Each property built today should be provided with 2 or 3 15mm flexi pipes to a location in the property (beside fuse box say) that leads back to the local "telecoms cabinet" which allows the fibre to be patched into whichever providers want to connect to the box. With 15mm tube, one could even be pre-installed with cat6 type cabling ready to use for a phone/other copper based service if required.

Here in Stavanger (Norway) they are gradually going round town replacing a lot of underground cables and pipes, as they do so, they are laying LOTS of thin orange pipes feeding from comms boxes to homes (the property boundary anyway) then if/when the occupants want fibre, they just need to traverse their own property and through the (usually timber) house wall

Range Rover to fit trendy new SUV with FRIKKIN' LASER HUDs


Re: Call me sceptical

@Chris Miller : I believe you mean "No-one has ever seen an Evoque 'intentionally' off road" You have to remember how many people driving these things think 4WD means better braking (despite the dead weight of the thing) than a 2WD car, last I checked it was a legal requirement for ALL wheels on a car to have brake. This misconception often leads to this type o vehicle ending up off-road . . in a ditch, in a hedge, or in one bend I know of in Scotland, in the ploughed mud the farmer removes the fence from each winter (He got fed up of repairing the wall), right beside the sign with his phone number and prices for coming up with a tractor to pull you out, and NOT call your insurance company.

Google goes dark for 2 minutes, kills 40% of world's net traffic


Or maybe . . . .

. . . a Streetview car got too close to a datacentre, and while slurping, erm, looking at if there are available wifi networks, accidentally starting a fatal loop. (Much akin to setting up 3 accounts on a VAX cluster to forward e-mails in a ring) until it fell over.

Xerox copier flaw changes numbers in scanned docs


Re: "I've worked for Xerox for some years"

I "LOVE" calls for inkjet paper/OHP film etc melted in the fuser. Such a blatent PEBKAC is always chareable.

But back to the article . . . 200DPI for point size 6 ??? And this guy's dong a PHD ?

Hey, I need to copy this detailed thing, I know I'll turn down the DPI to make the file smaller.

BOFH: Don't be afraid - we won't hurt your delicate, flimsy inkjet printer


Re: Do people still own printers?

Ah, thank you for bringing back a fond memory of seeing P45 appear across a users face as I helped their IT man by fixing their colour laser printer (back around 2001 so not full photo quality) . . Having swapped out the broken cog, the print queue starts appearing, and it seems it died outside office hours as lets say the first prints out were using a lot of magenta and yellow. Seems the company didn't approve of XXX printout, as the user concerned tried to hide behind his screen, the IT man pauses the printer to go check the queue for user IDs.

On my next visit to the office there was a distinctly tidy, empty desk in the corner.

As for the Canon people allowing models with BJ in the name, I had a customer (not in the UK) who's name was "B.J. Services" Who thought that was a good idea ?

Model S selling better than expected, says Tesla


Re: @ecofeco Umm, no! Leccy? No!!

I beg to differ. Did you check any statistics before stating "There isn't a single country in the world in which renewable electricity generation exceeds the demand for electricity." ? In Norway (latest figures are for 2011, they are still working on the 2012 numbers and they are not yet public) Total production of Hydro, Thermal and Wind power was 127,632 GWh. Total consumption for the country in that period 114,275GWh. Now correct me if I am wrong but that means norway had produced more power from renewable sources that they actually used . . in 2011 and 2012 a good deal of power was exported to Sweden while they carried out major maintainance on a nuclear station, including the cleanup after someone allegedly left a vacuum cleaner in the "hot zone" on startup for a test. Some stats ? http://www.ssb.no/en/elektrisitetaar/

Swedish linguists nix new word after row with Google


Re: Actually, it was removed for a much simpler reason

But did you tell Google to search SWEDISH language sites only for the word ? Much as "jernbanen" won't find many results on an English Google setup, it will find more when told to check in Norwegian. . .

B.T.W. "på norsk" the word would be ugooglebar. (Norwegian Google find that) as does the swedish google.se find links to ogooglebar BUT you have to remind google to search for what you typed, or they try to force you to see searches for googlebar . . ie their toolbar. Yet another case of Google trying to control what results we see based on what THEY want not what WE search for.

Drunk driving: No more dangerous than talking on handsfree mobe


Nice blonde

And how many people reading this instinctively glanced to one side to see aforementioned blonde, despite knowing they are sitting in a room on their own ?

Throttled customers rage over Virgin Mobile UK's tight cap


3G speeds . . work fine here

Having read this I decided to test my mobile provider. On my tablet via 3G I got 9.84Mb down and 1.66Mb/s up. Turn on the wireless and the mobil apps craps itself as it tops off at the 20Mb/s cap in teh app each way. . . and with 8GB/month for about £28/month equivalent (249 NOK) It's pretty reasonable priced too.

Moscow's speed cameras 'knackered' by MYSTERY malware


Re: 3.2 Million reasons to love speed cameras

You are right about Norway, the problem is the locals get too used to that attitude and walk/cycle out without looking. However when I first visited here ( I've lived out in Norway for 6 yrs now and LOVE it, highly recommended) my wife duly stepped onto a pedestrian crossing as a white transit van approached, which after 10 yrs in London I would have classed as "Suicide"

But then over here ALL traffic infractions are expensive . . . (based on a nominal 9 kroner/pound) - Speeding and getting caught - minimum fine 250ish pounds. Driving through a residential street marked as "No through traffic" £450. Crossing a double unbroken centre line to get past a bus at bus-stop (same rules as double white lines i UK) about £250.

And the police are allowed to, and DO "hide" with speed traps. I've seen a head peering over a rock with laser gun, sat in someones driveway, in a farmyard overlooking a long straight (where there have been quite a few accidents as people forget there is crossing traffic for a junction)

Ethernet at 40: Its daddy reveals its turbulent youth


Re: IBM's arrogance was that they could make standards ..

Actually I think you'll find one of the differences between £70 and £400 cameras is also in the quality of the lens and zoom mechanism, the quality (not the pixel count) of the sensor to allow lower light shooting, the intelligence to drive the auto-focus at a decent speed, etc etc etc. A camera, like any techy device contains many separate parts that can influence the final product. No point having the worlds best sensor and autofocus systems and then throwing in a cheap plastic lens system.

Mega-res telly demand to boom, say ball-gazers


"Call me when they make wallpaper which can display an HD image"

It's called hanging a decent projector from your ceiling. There you are, job done. Personally I'd rather go with a projector than obliterate half a house wall with a black rectangle until we fire up the nuclear reactor to power it.

Satnav-murdering Google slips its Maps into car dashboards


Re: Hmmm. Android!

Nice plan, but wouldn't work in the UK where the "fair use policy" would kick in half an hour after bringing home a new car which decides to try to download google maps data for that small area known as "Europe" including ALL streetview images it thinks you "might" need one day. . . On the other hand unlocking this system could be fun with kids in the back editing the satnav destination from "Grannys house" to "Alton Towers" or similar. . . . .


Re: Data Cost

Twin sims ARE available, even for mere "consumers" (Well they are in norway) . . For work I have a phone and tablet with twinned sims, one for calls/sms/data the other is a pure data sim, but twinned to same contract and data allowance. So it doesn't matter if I decide to leave the tablet in the van and log a calls details on the phone. I can on my private phone contract get a twin sim for a tablet/3G or 4G dongle with a nominal cost for the sim itself, then fully shared data allowances.

Never come near the 8GB/month limit on my own tablet . .

Word wonks insist GIFs are really JIFs



On a slight tangent . . try Norwegians . . who not using the letter "W" at the start of words often will claim to drive a "Bay Emm Vay" (phonetically) they give people that say "Bay Emm Dobbel-Vay" a funny look . . Yeah we pronounce letters a bit different over here, but generally I take a name with a W to include that and not arbitrarily swap to another letter.



Re: So What?

Time to exert your rights as a consumer. If it's faulty, they have a legal obligation to send it off for repair, however are you SURE the wifi issue is the phone ? Unless stated otherwise in any contract they have no obligation to offer a loan phone. I've been waiting 3 weeks for my coffee machine to return from repair, but I didn't get a loan coffee machine. Have you tried contacting HTC support directly instead of O2 ? I've found a few times that although "legally" the retailer is obliged to help you, often the makers are more helpful direct. . . And stating you'll never buy an HTC again because of bad service from 02 is like never buying a Ford again because you didn't like the service the dealer gave you . . . plenty other people sell Fords (and HTC phonees too, although maybe not the SAME people)

Everything Everywhere bags 4G monopoly in UK - for now


4G ? Which definition ?

Are we using the UK definition of 4G using "UK spectrum allocations" or "Apples" ? "•4G LTE (700, 2100MHz) US and Canada only" So for anyone who ran out and bought a new iPad waigint for the 4G network . . . HAHAHAHAHA Ain't going to happen UK side as Apple were too shortsighted to include international frequency sets in their specification.


Re: Legal Action

Not in the UK, where as far as I understand it the frequency that 4G will be running on is not the same as the USA 4g, and therefore the new iSpad is not going to be 4G compatable in the UK, (or for that matter most of the world)

PayPal drops into McDonalds, begs meat-guzzlers to give it a bonk


Re: It would help...

I'd like a choice. When passing through Heathrow last week, I stuck my card in as usual for chip-n-pin, to find the machine kept tellingthe assistant to "Ask customer to present their card" NO indication it meand NFC or contactless or anything, In the end "I" spotted the NFC logo on the reader and tried it, "bing" payment taken with no PIN, which personally I don't like. At the least it should be the customer sets the floor limit at which a PIN is required, after all it's our money. Banks tell us it's to save time in store, but chip and PIN takes me 3 or 4 secs, total, so I don't see how much they think I "NEED" to save 4 secs per transaction, having waited 4 mins to get to a cashier.

Dish Networks locks horns with broadcasters over ad skipping


Re: Buy the DVD

That's why I rip the main feature to DivX, heave it on my ext HDD hanging off the DVD player and suddenly no ads. Bit more work ripping to make sure I have both English and Norwegian versions done though. Also protects the DVDs from small sticky fingers.

BT missing from Pirate Bay High Court slap-down


Re: "properly licensed digital services"

If the details stating the requirements to iTunes and WMP are not on the OUTSIDE of the packaging, then you can legally return it as "unfit for purpose" as it does meet the description printed on the box. Text sealed inside a plastic film and unreadable until opened CANNOT prevent return for this. Same as if you open a software package and don't agree to the full terms you can legally return it for a refund. (It's just the shops like to kick up a fuss over it)

Ten... Bedroom Gadget Treats


Re: I'm dubious

Having an earlier version of the wake up light in our room in Norway, I can testify that having teh gentle visual stimulation to bring you out a deep sleep before the alarm sounds is actually MUCH nicer than going snore to "Where's that bleedin alarm" in 1/2 sec. I was dubious until we used it through a full winter season. Made getting up a LOT easier. And it doesn't wake you up 20 mins before allocated time, it gradually simulates a sunrise to bring you out a deep sleep cycle ready to wake you more politely.

Pair of double-As give you cheap, quick charge


Re: £2.00 solution.

A pack of 11 (ELEVEN) batteries ?

That's a new one on me. Seen 10 and 12 before, but never 11.

Council spunks '£100k on how to wash your hands' vid


Re: There are plenty of blokes...

Re washing hands BEFORE peeing . . . same goes after chopping chilli peppers ! Believe me I KNOW !

Thousands of Brits bombarded in caller spoofing riddle


Re: Truecall

We get those over in Norway too, trying to get them find what they try to get to (which only seems to work in XP, as my wife got the first one when I was out and didn't know any better), on a PC set to Norsk in fun. . . . Asking why "Windows" would know about a problem on a Linux PC confuses them too. . . or simply refusing to admit I speak English.

Ten... sub-£100 mono laser printers


Re: Nice to see this...

I assume you have tried cleaning the paper feed rollers with a moist cloth to remove the years of paper dust buildup ?

Satnav blunders blamed for £200m damages


Outdated maps ?

They'll never force makers to issue lifetime free updates, but it should at least have a 6 or 12 month "latest map" included in the price. My Tomtom (now 6 months old) tells me the maps are 7 months old . . yet their "latest map guarantee" never got me the update withing the 3 month windiw it shoud have done That said it still shows the speed limit on the main road between Stavanger and Kristiansand (That's in Norway) as 90km/h, and they have done for 10 yrs, despite the fact the limit there has NEVER been 90, has always been 80, and I know of at least 8 people that have used the "report errors" function to send in corrections over the last few years. Nice to see they pay attention . . .

Upgrade eliminates Atlantis from Google Earth


But at least Google have a sense of humour . . .

My personal fave find on google maps so far is this set of walking instructions . . . . http://g.co/maps/ejy76

Virgin Media to push out nimble new broadband speeds


20Mb entry level . . . nice . .

nice but not phenomenal . . . I've a nice 40Mb synchronous line, damned stable at 38+Mb too. I'd love to upgrade to their top deal (from the entry level I'm on) but with a 100Mb home network opting for a 400Mb internet package seems a bit pointless.

(www.lyse.net if you want more info, but you "might" want to get google translate to help a little)

Ten... mini hi-fi systems


Alternatively . . .

. . . Rip all the CDs to decent quality MP3 (I use CDEX and it does a cracking job with the filelookups) Heave all the files onto a nice Netgear ReadyNAS (such as the DUO 1TB) and play via a "Squeezebox" either the "touch" to use your existing amp, or "radio" tfor an all in one solution. Lets you choose "folder" view so how you file the music is how is finds it, NOT based on MP3 tags. Of course this also makes all your files available easily to any PCs in eh house that are on the same network.

Comet 'sold 94,000 pirate Windows CDs', claims Microsoft


Never mind the media . . feel the licence restrictions

Last year I needed to reinstall XP on the wifes old laptop, so it could be reused for other purposes, as windows over time had become totally unstable. used the ORIGINAL supplied restore CD, problem the licence key fails to work, call Microshaft and got told by their own staff that as they "no longer issue keys for XP I should install a corporate edition and find/borrow a key" (Wasn't aware that XP had an expiry date after whice it cannot be reinstalled, surely the key it comes with should always work.

When I asked if he meant I should "pirate a copy of XP corporate" he said "YES"

I wasw under the impression we "bought a licence" to use the software and didn't "rent it until M$ sees fit to change it's mind"