* Posts by Chris McFaul

67 publicly visible posts • joined 31 Oct 2007


MAMR Mia! Western Digital's 18TB and 20TB microwave-energy hard drives out soon

Chris McFaul


Subtitle: “skipping 16tb capacity”

Couple of paragraphs in “The Ultrastar data centre DC HC550 is a helium-filled drive in 16TB and 18TB versions.”

Chris McFaul


Subtitle “skipping over 16tb”

Couple of paragraphs later “The Ultrastar data centre DC HC550 is a helium-filled drive in 16TB and 18TB versions.”

BT commences trials of copper-to-the-home G.fast broadband tech

Chris McFaul

Re: London Docklands - Hyperoptic

Also in Zone 2 south london here... on a 1.1km EO line so cant even get FTTC... Thorough sick of hearing all the crap about rural broadband/fibre for farmers when fairly central london is still stuck with single digit mbps!

Virgin Media starts its broadband-of-the-gaps fibre rollout

Chris McFaul

cable my street

According to cable my street - my street (which admittedly was only built 22 years ago) doesn't even exist.

If i put my postcode in, there is no list of addresses for me to choose from.

If it doesn't even think the street exists, no wonder i don't have fibre broadband yet!

4K refresh sees Blu-ray climb to 100GB, again

Chris McFaul

Re: Capacity

In short, better compression, while im sure there will be 4k in h264, just like there was full HD in MPEG 2, really i expect most 4k releases to use h265 (HEVC)

plus keep in mind, a lot of movies are on single layer blu-rays.. and even then the "movie" part is often only 15-20GB (the rest is extras and other crap).

Behold our SPINNING DATA GRAVE: WD carts out 6.3TB cold storage drive

Chris McFaul

Re, Se and Xe... so Ae fits in nicely with its business focused offerings.

And the article forgot "purple" from the WD rainbow too...

and 500,000 MTBF is operational hours, and i imagine the usages scenario for this drive is that it is designed to be "off" for quite a proportion of the time

THUD! WD plonks down SIX TERABYTE 'consumer NAS' fatboy

Chris McFaul


"are for up to 5-bay enclosures"

actually with the new Red (still non-pro), with NASWare 3.0, they are now for up to 8 bay enclosures (but non-rackmount).

Blighty goes retro with 12-sided pound coin

Chris McFaul

Re: A question of balance

you can.. its just more difficult


Chris McFaul

Re: 12-sided...

The 20p and 50p have constant diameter no matter where you measure them

this new £1 will be the first coin in a very long time not to have a constant diameter


Seagate's LaCie touts a 25TB (not a typo) box o' disks for your DESK

Chris McFaul

Re: 25TB at RAID5? ...

if you look at their website, you can do raid 1 on an even number of disks, and have a hot spare, or have two raid 1s and a hot spare, or a two drive raid 1 and a three drive raid 0

no one said you had to use all five drives in a single raid 1.....

Chris McFaul

maths fail?

"The 25TB 5big Thunderbolt box can apparently hit a read speed of 785MB/sec, and write at 695MB/sec – but we notice that's using 4TB drives rather than the new 5TB disks, so your mileage may very well vary."

Exactly how can it be using 4TB drives, if its got five drives and a total capacity of 25TB?

BEAM ME UP... twice: No local storage on Transporter Sync

Chris McFaul

What does it do then?

If the transporter sync only uses locally saved files, in the transporter file, what does the transporter actually DO. Surely if the files reside entirely on the host computer in a "transporter folder" - then the sharing and synchronization can entirely replicated in software - what does the little puck shaped device add to the mix?

All rivers flow into the sea: Apple holds TEN PER CENT of corporate America's dosh

Chris McFaul

This overlooks the fact that almost $100bn of apple's cash is overseas, and they cant bring it back without paying a huge amount of tax on it.

And the 10% is taking apples TOTAL cash (including overseas) as a fraction of other companies US ONLY cash, so its meaningless, if they were to include US companies overseas holdings, as they do with apple, then apple have between 2 and 3% of the non financial cash reserves.

a totally pointless report, hideously skewed by not comparing like for like

Tosh flashifies disk in demo hybrid drive

Chris McFaul

how fast do you want...

" It's bandwidth is just 80GB/sec, seemingly unimpressive."

80GB/sec is VERY impressive to me...

Mars rover harangues empty landscape with loudhailer

Chris McFaul

If you believe the BBC...


"But with no speakers on the rover, the track was not played on the red planet itself."

Chris McFaul

As usual, it was El Reg who was wrong...

I just watched the BBC news and one of the first things the reporter said was "Although the rover doesn't have any speakers on board..."

and continues to say how this is the first audio broadcast from another planet...

basically its the first interplanetary spotify

Chris McFaul

From what i can gather, it doenst have speakers - the message was simply relayed VIA the rover.. it was never played out loud to an empty martian desert.

Nintendo 3DS XL review

Chris McFaul

the first line is wrong!!! the screen isnt OVER twice the size of its predecessor

ignoring that fact that to most people a screen twice the SIZE of a 3.5" one would be a 7" one....

i can only assume you are talking about area - and ironically the advert this article appears on top of says that the XL has 90% more area... meaning its LESS than twice the area

Apple iOS 6 beta limits number of apps per device

Chris McFaul

i had about 700 but i had a bit of a purge and im down to 550 now....

HTC peeves punters with One X woes

Chris McFaul

I am now on my FOURTH HTC One X... having had to return three faulty units - all with screen problems (the second one also had loose internals that rattled around and other problems too).

This one seems ok but i will be ebaying this and getting a Galaxy S3 as soon as its out.

Windows 8 to get self-healing 'Storage Spaces'

Chris McFaul

parity spaces

According to the FAQ there is no such thing as dual parity support, single parity is the only option , contrary to your article

Seagate triples up heads/platter ratio

Chris McFaul


while this is obviously their april fools - its not a very good one, since hard drives with two actuators have already existed ion the past.


Social levelling with the iPad

Chris McFaul


" 5 year old £300 laptop wil do EVERYTHYING it can do"

your 5 year old laptop has a touchscreen? thats very impressive....

WD and Xyratex discuss future tech roadmap for disk drives

Chris McFaul

so exactly the same?

"He reckoned that SSD areal density curve was increasing at 33 per cent a year through to 2020 while the hard disk drive areal density increase rate was 33 per cent."

WD thrusts forth its mighty 3TB internal hardness

Chris McFaul

available now?

from where exactly?

Facebook is 'killing privacy for commercial gain'

Chris McFaul


"The chief technology officer at BT Counterpane said that part of the threat to privacy comes from governments hiring private firms to get around privacy regulations"

So not say, from BT letting Phorm intercept all of its users communcation?

iPhone 4 jailbreak banks on browser exploit

Chris McFaul
Thumb Up

MMS & facetime

the issue has been fixed now,

if you havent jailbroken yet, when you do, mms and facetime will be fine.

if you have already jailbroken and have lost mms & facetime, just run cydia, it will auto update, then reboot your phone and it will be fixed.

Boffins authenticate Apple 'Antennagate'

Chris McFaul


"not available in the uk"

Last time i was in the apple store (three days after the phone's uk launch) they had wall to wall bumpers!

AND the bumper I ordered through apples free bumper program has also been delivered (as have several of my friends!)

French operator pooh-poohs iOS4

Chris McFaul


the 3GS only suffers from marginal slowdowns, most people probably wouldnt notice, the 3G is basically crippled (the "S" obviously has a much more powerful processor and can cope with the demanding OS4 more easily)

Chris McFaul


If you havent jailbroken (to back up your blobs) and have a 3GS, then the upgrade is currently totally irreversible

Man uses meat cleaver to fashion UK-ready iPad

Chris McFaul

micro sim

actually - i think this is more to do with the fact that the micro sim can have additional functionality built into it - more levels of authentication.

This trick works because the microsim card slot in the ipad is backwards compatible with the electronics of a regular sim, but in future its perfectly possible that you could just take a microsim and put it in a plastic container to use it in your regular mini-sim phone.

Missing Soviet nuclear electrocar FOUND ON MOON

Chris McFaul


im guessing the first reading should be to with in a kilometer?

"Using the 3.5m telescope at Apache Point in New Mexico, Murphy and his colleagues were able at last to get a laser reflection back from the missing moon-prowler, getting its range to within a centimetre. A second reading less than 30 minutes later gave another line of position and pinned the machine down to within 10 metres. In time, Murphy believes he can refine this down to within a centimetre."

Wired defines the storage 'PornYear'

Chris McFaul


188PB for 2.7 million hours works out at 69GB/hour

which even for HD seems outrageous, thats well above blu-ray where you can squeeze a 2 hour move onto a 25GB SL disc.

O2 claims win in UK mobile broadband speed test

Chris McFaul


"What this last test shows is that there's really not much in it. O2 was quick to point out that London was one the place where it delivered the fastest web page transfer speed, 1.7 seconds, and that was 30 per cent faster than its slowest rival.

That not only means that the slow one transferred the page in 1.3 seconds"

surely a SLOWER page will take longer to load - so it would be MORE than the 1.7 seconds of the fastest. according to your article loading something in 1.3 seconds is slower than loading it in 1.7 seconds?

Android and WinMo updates going head-to-head

Chris McFaul


" has now been uncovered, thanks to the release of a downloadable SDK for application developers"

that and the fact for the last week you've been able to buy a phone running that OS - you dont need an SDK to find it!!!

Google "nexus" and see how many hits you get :P

Google Nexus One caught on camera

Chris McFaul

Big Deal

Mine arrived today (London, UK)

HTC HD2 'pink blob' patch produced

Chris McFaul


who care what OS you have?!! just use the HD2 to download the file - you dont even need a damn computer!

More to the point - its very nice they have fixed a minor bug with the camera - what about the MAJOR bug with the SMS feature (i.e. that it doesnt work!)

HTC HD2 Windows Mobile smartphone

Chris McFaul

an AWFUL phone

I have had mine a week today...

There is no argument, the hardware is amazing

Sadly the software is a disaster.

The alarm function regularly stop making sounds (a problem if you are relying on it to wake you up!) - it pops up but stays silent

The audio manager crashes every 60 seconds (seriously...)

the "volume" rocker on the side control the volume in every app EXCEPT the audio player, where it mysteriously shuffles between tracks (you already have a skip control on the headphone lead!).. meaning that when listening to music there is no way to change the volume - the only way to do it is to LEAVE the app - go to a differnet tab on "sense" THEN change the volume.. THEN go back into the app!

What moron though that up?

And - by far the most serious problem:

It cant even get messaging right. three times so far (in a WEEK) its simply stopped dealing with text messages.. you can write them.. you can hit send.. it even tells you that they have successfully sent, but in fact, its just storing them (somewhere!).. it's only when you next reboot your phone that it sends them all at once after it has finished starting. Its also failed to receive a few texts. If it cant even be relied on for sending a freaking SMS then how can they call it a phone?! - and this bug isnt even new - it was in the Touch/HD too and they STILL havent properly fixed it

How on earth this PoS got past any kind of quality control with so many bugs i have no idea

im HOPING that they will release a firmware update which fixes this issues, but as it is, its damn near unusable and i can only say avoid it at all costs.

Microsoft apologizes for digital head transplant

Chris McFaul


interesting everyone automatically assumes its about race - and yet they left the asian guy in?

maybe its because the black guy had grey hair and was the oldest in the pic, maybe they wanted it to reflect a younger more "dynamic" image ?

New NASA rocket fuel 'could be made on Moon, Mars'

Chris McFaul

water vapour?

while i'm aware that burning hydrogen and oxygen - as current liquid fuelled rockets do - produces water vapour as an exhaust...

I was under the impression that hydrogen and oxygen aren't the ONLY ingredients in a liquid fuelled rocket. There are usually various additives and stabilisers etc etc - some of which are extremely toxic, so maybe an ALICE engine could be more environmentally friendly than a "convention" rocket?

First plug-in Prius paraded by car rental firm

Chris McFaul

Oh really?

"the car performs like a standard Toyota Prius."

Surely you mean

"the car performs like a standard Toyota Prius lugging around a sodding great battery in the boot"

WD drops 4TB whopper

Chris McFaul


a 4 Slot drobo with 4 x 2TB drives can only store 6TB since it HAS to use 2TB of capacity for parity information.

Can Western Digital drives vary their spin speeds?

Chris McFaul


the difference is that you could be waiting longer for that 100MB to come round under the heads while the drive spins slowly.. rather than having it start to read much faster of a drive with a faster spin speed

especially since that 100mb is unlikely to be in one nice big continuous file

go look up rotational latency

Western Digital Caviar Green 2TB hard drive

Chris McFaul

@ mad hacker

yes, quite obviously, that entire paragraph was completely re-written following my rant

it originally talked about dynamically varying the drive speed

Chris McFaul

a or an

he is right that its entirely down to the sound rather than the specific letter,

the easiest example is:

an MP

even though M is not a vowel, in this context it is pronounced:


so its "an em-pee" :P

Chris McFaul

ANOTHER mistake

For about the millionth time

these drives do NOT vary the spin speed dynamically.

WD even had to issue a clarification because so many people were incorrectly making this assumption.

people have hooked up microphones to CRO's to measure their hum to prove the drive speed never changed.

the make a hard drive motor which can change its speed in the way suggested would be VERY difficult.

Unless by vary you mean : 5,400rpm and 0 rpm (the only variation it can do)

Chris McFaul

a better clarification:

some of WD's other marketing material makes it clearer (last two words below), but i would have hoped for the tiniest bit of fact checking from a hardware review! peddling this kind of BS only serves to perpetuate the myth that WD have done something remarkable


IntelliPower™ — A fine-tuned balance of spin speed, transfer rate, and caching algorithms designed to deliver both significant power savings and solid performance. For each GreenPower™ drive model, WD may use a different, INVARIABLE RPM.

HP boxes Mother Earth into submission

Chris McFaul

Read the picture?

Evidently there is a dedicated box for the fuser unit - it says "fuser unit" on the side of the box in the photo!

WD VelociRaptor 300GB HDD vs SSD

Chris McFaul

its NOT the same as a notebook drive

"The VelociRaptor takes advantage of the latest advances in areal density by shrinking the platters even further, to 2.5in such that the new drive has the same 99 x 69 x 15mm dimensions as a notebook hard drive. There’s no expectation that anyone will use VelociRaptor inside a laptop as the smaller form-factor is aimed at Enterprise customers who want to stuff their blades with storage."

The other reason no one will stuff them into notebooks is that notebooks use 9.5 mm and 12.5mm high drives, I have never seen a notebook which could take a 15mm drive (let alone deal with the eat or power issues of this one). So it is NOT the "same dimensions as a notebook hard drive".

NASA's Ares V may crush Kennedy crawlerway

Chris McFaul

@ AC who cant do maths

58million iphones weighing (NOT waying...) 7.7million KG would come in at 133g per phone,

for your 7.5kg you distributed the phones amongst the weight, not the weight amongst the phones, by your maths its 7.5 phones to the kg, rather than 7.5 kg to the phone

if you are going to correct people you should make damn sure you are correct yourself (especially if you then call yourself a pedant)