* Posts by Edwin

536 publicly visible posts • joined 12 Apr 2007


Bombshell biography: Fearing nuclear war, Musk blocked Starlink to stymie Ukraine attack on Russia


Re: Pick your poison

If that question is being asked in earnest, we're all doomed.

The price of freedom turned out to be an afternoon of tech panic


I'll assume this was America

Because only there would an employee even consider calling an employer "very forgiving" when they've just docked your pay for an innocent mistake (especially if you're fresh out of school and thus presumably cheap)

(I suspect btw it's pretty easy to dock the pay - especially for an hourly wage employee - just tell them not to book the hours or they're fired.)

Fujitsu admits it fluffed the fix for Japan’s flaky ID card scheme


Not gomen'nasai

I believe sumimasen would be more appropriate in this case...

Airline puts international passengers on the scales pre-flight


Finnair did this

5 or so years ago - seems very sensible.

Let white-hat hackers stick a probe in those voting machines, say senators


Re: If you want secure elections

Agreed - I take issue with the "it was all much more secure before computers" because that's not the same as "election outcomes were more accurate before computers"

Automated vote tallying of paper ballots is indeed the way to go if you want absolutely demonstrable results.

With regard to voter registration - I've never understood the slightly weird US system. Most of the countries I've lived in are infinitely more democratic: you get a document by mail allowing you to vote, and you get it by mail by definition, not depending on whether you've followed some arcane process.

Ex-OpenSea exec convicted in first-of-its-kind case of insider trading of NFTs


A lament

For the state of education in the US, when even those who write for a living (press releases) are unable to put together four lines correctly (advanced -> advance). And fie on El Reg for not making light of it!

ServiceNow CEO says mergers and acquisitions are off the table – too messy


It seems he's learned something then ;)

Electron-to-joule conversion formulae? Cute. Welcome to the school of hard knocks


Re: Nortel clearly learnt from this...

Indeed, I managed a 51C that seemed indestructible.

I'm guessing the SDX was a predecessor of the 11C?

When ERP migrations go bad: Games Workshop says project issues are delaying refresh of 'dated' online store


Has anyone ever heard of an ERP migration...

...that finished on time, on budget and on scope?

AI caramba, those neural networks are power-hungry: Counting the environmental cost of artificial intelligence


The bigger processing power waste

is in cryptocurrency, where the processing load for mining is pure waste.

Wouldn't mind seeing that addressed, but I suspect most crypto miners don't care and it would presumably be impossible to regulate.

So the data centre's 'getting a little hot' – at 57°C, that's quite the understatement


Re: I once had to do something similar in a Skoda...

I once had a similar experience in sunny New Mexico in the late 80s or early 90s - a somewhat older vehicle was standing by the side of the highway showing clear signs of overheating. We stopped and offered assistance and showed them the trick of running the heater to help cool the engine.

They drove off happily, and we followed for a bit to make sure all was well. Sure enough, after a little while, they pulled over again. Turned out it was too hot in the car with the heater running (it was nearly 40 degrees outside), so they'd switched on the A/C, and a late 70s/early 80s A/C compressor represents a significant engine load...

Advised them to roll down the windows instead, which got them to the next exit.

Boston Dynamics spends months training its Atlas robots to perform one minute of parkour almost perfectly


Re: I, for one, welcome our new robotic overlords..

Agreed. Boston Dynamics is quite possibly the coolest company on the planet.

Magna Carta mayhem: Protesters lay siege to Edinburgh Castle, citing obscure Latin text that has never applied in Scotland


Another comedy of errors taken down...

't seems Janie's gone and removed the video. So much for my lunchtime entertainment...

Chocolate beer barred from sale after child mistakes it for chocolate milk


Re: Misreporting for clicks

Yeah, I'm hoping this doesn't represent a new trend in clickbaity headlines for El Reg. That would be a drop in standards.

A hotline to His Billness? Or a guard having a bit of a giggle?


Re: Hunt Groups

Indeed, and hunt groups don't all ring at once, but they 'hunt' from extension to extension if I remember my Nortel days correctly. It seems unlikely you'd set up your PBX hunt groups to hunt to extensions all over campus, if for no other reason than that the accounts department can't help you with a bug report and his billness can't help with a billing inquiry.

I'm not saying it's impossible, but it seems unlikely the PBX would be set up this way.

NTT slashes top execs’ pay as punishment for paying more than their share of $500-a-head meals with government officials


Japanese curry

I found Japanese curry to be one of the most interesting imports and exceptionally good value - to the point of finding out where to by the spice mixes after returning home :)

Can't beat okonomiyaki though :)

Linus Torvalds tells kernel list poster to 'SHUT THE HELL UP' for saying COVID-19 vaccines create 'new humanoid race'



...and the reason I think El Reg should purge itself from Facebook is the (only) three comments below this story on that platform. Sadly they originate from a countryman of mine.

For those who don't know: Lange Frans is a washed-up has-been from the dutch rap scene. He's trying to make a name from himself (or return to the spotlight) as an 'influencer' by peddling consipiracy theories and other social mechanisms that seem to exist only to prove Darwin right.

Traffic lights, who needs 'em? Lucky Kentucky residents up in arms over first roundabout


Check out Freakonomics episode 454

There's one town in the US doing really well with roundabouts, and there's a fair bit of science supporting them as a good traffic management measure.

Salesman who helped land Veritas UK's 'largest ever' deal was lawfully docked £275k in commission, says judge



I believe it was a renewal, in which case the really tough sell (assuming your delivery is good) has already been done...

How not to apply for a new job: Apply for it on a job site


Re: LinkedOut.

I'll be the dissenting voice then :)

I quite like LinkedIn, but must confess that I'm more of a Dabbsian generalist than a hardcore specialist.

The term 'Facebook for suits' is perhaps pretty apt, but I wouldn't go so far as the OP who is - presumably - engaging in a bit of commentardism on the boss' dime as well.

Docking £500k commission from top SAS salesman was perfectly legal, rules judge


Typo aside

Assuming the bonus depends on both revenue and margin, customers will be able to get quite nice pricing in future as sales no longer cares about high margin beyond a certain contract size :)

So if you're a bigger customer for SAS, now is the time to renew :D

PSA: If you're still giving users admin rights, maybe try not doing that. Would've helped dampen 100+ Microsoft vulns last year – report


Re: Why do I need admin rights? Well, because of IT

Would you believe a large IT service company? The shoemaker's children and all that...


Re: Why do I need admin rights? Well, because of IT

In every company I've ever worked for, IT has wanted to position itself as a trusted partner for the business, rather than a service provider. And that's as it should be - otherwise (as a company) you're wasting the tremendous competence that exists in the IT unit. The ownership for the IT processes goes hand in hand with that, so IMNSVHO, my pain is very much IT's accountability.


Why do I need admin rights? Well, because of IT

The title says it all. I work in a company where admin rights were (recently-ish) withdrawn, but there's no software request or release process. So when I urgently needed a piece of software for a customer presentation, I wasted two days trying to work out how to get it installed on my workstation because - while every other process known to man was designed (badly) and published (better), the 'non-previously-approved software' process seems to not have been a prerequisite to withdrawing admin rights. And of course IT support is designed so that the poor sods on the helldesk are your only point of contact. Everyone with the ability to *do* something is heavily shielded from the coalface.

Two clichés, one headline: 'No good deed goes unpunished' and 'It's always DNS'


Can we please have a survey?

1) Nobody at my company would ever behave that way

2) Been on the receiving end of such bureacratically-inspired nonsense

3) Been on the receiving end of such bureacratically-inspired nonsensemore than once

4) I don't see the issue - change management is a sacred process and Sam should have been sacked

(anyone answering 1 and working at a company over 5000 people is a liar, and anyone answering 4 should be sacked but will probably hang on to their job long after the Sams of the world are sent packing)

Inflated figures and customers who were never there. Just another data migration then


which converts to

1000 new members per second, or 32 billion new members per year.

Further marketing wizardry will convert that to "we expect to have the entire global population signed up by the end of next quarter".

IBM repays millions to staff after messing up its own payroll


Re: Odd indeed

I've run into similar rules on company cars in Europe. Only one previous employer gave the option of taking a car or taking cash instead. All others were variations on the theme of 'take it or leave it' - in some cases not even offering public transport compensation (let alone a bicycle) as an alternative.

The holiday pay thing is also reasonably common in Europe - many countries will pay out an extra couple of weeks in summer and/or winter.

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


There, but for the grace of God,

go I...

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


Re: Rudest, Dumbest - same thing no?

That puts of in mind of the company I ran local support for in the late 90s... We had a number of cases where users called up after a tech support visit to complain that their files were gone or their email didn't work. A reboot usually fixed the problem, but it wasn't until someone complained that their password didn't work that the penny finally dropped.

As users didn't have admin rights, anything more complicated than a printer install required the support team to log into the machine using their own credentials. Best practice was to reboot the machine after the work was done and remove your own username from the login prompt before handing over to the user, but it turned out one of my team regularly skipped that last bit and left the machine logged in with his own credentials. We had more than one savvy user obtain admin rights that way, too...

Ever wonder how a pentest turns into felony charges? Coalfire duo explain Iowa courthouse arrest debacle



Sounds like the contract was not very good and the testers blindly accepted a scope change without confirmation in writing.

Not to say the various officials weren't being deliberately disagreeable, but I think this is a case of less commercial naiveté and not more legislation...

IBM job ad calls for 12 years’ experience with Kubernetes – which is six years old


Re: Why wouldn't Tim Berners-Lee have 17 years experience designing websites?

I think I did my first commercial website around 1995 or 1996. If you do the math, the candidate was pretty young when they claimed to start building websites, they probably used notepad or hotdog to code the HTML and upload it to the ISP or perhaps used something like Geocities (founded 1994).

As to ignorance of Tim's existence - I'm not surprised, really. The early days of the web were pretty fragmented, so as long as you could find your way to the TUCOWS website, you could do a *lot* on the web without knowing anything about it.

It looks like you want a storage appliance for your data centre. Maybe you'd prefer a smart card reader?


Re: Tiger Direct?

Indeed. Once and never, ever again.

Real-time tragedy: Dumb deletion leaves librarian red-faced and fails to nix teenage kicks on the school network


Re: My uni had similar rules :)

Your comment doesn't conflict with the 'true admins are the banes...' comment.

A true admin differentiates between users that know what they're doing (and are therefore allowed to game) and users that don't (and are therefore not allowed to game).

To the uninitiated, that differentiation could be viewed as somewhat arbitrary, of course ;)


My uni had similar rules :)

Of course, there the admins were more knowledgeable, so they had a boot floppy that would wipe a disk and initiate a fresh install from the network. The process took about 20 seconds after boot to start and half an hour to complete. If you were caught gaming, they would lean over your shoulder, insert the floppy, hit 'reset', wait the 20 seconds or so and then reclaim the floppy.

In later years, the machines could be booted from the network and wiped without the benefit of a floppy.

Short of tech talent to deal with novel coronavirus surge? Let us help – with free job ads on The Register


Re: Congratulations

Whaddyamean, lack of bandwidth? A pigeon can carry tons of data over reasonable distances quite quickly. Latency, OTOH...


well done

I seem to remember you've done this before though. Somewhere in the distant past?

A Notepad nightmare leaves sysadmin with something totally unprintable


Re: That triggered a memory...

Doh! Have sentenced myself to watch a four hour queue of Weird Al's Word Crimes for my sins. The first clip is already cued.


Re: That triggered a memory...

...of a usenet post I once read that went something like:

"I'm a computer nerd and do tech support for all my friends and family, but I've never installed Windows. How do you get Windows95 onto the hard disk if there's no operating system?"

Queue vast quantities of righteous derision - everyone has to learn sometime, but this particular user chose his words rather poorly...

(nb: this was before bootable CD-ROMs, when you had to make a bootable floppy with CD ROM drivers. Or install Win95 from floppy disks)

Remember the big IBM 360 mainframe rescue job? For now, Brexit has ballsed it up – big iron restorers


Containerise it?

Could you not pack it up in a couple of standard shipping containers?

Might cost a little more, but if you can load it into containers, then the shipping is a doddle and you no longer need a lift.

Be still, our drinking hearts: Help Reg name whisky beast conjured by Swedish distillers and AI blendbot


Sven Turing

Just to make it a little more Swedish

There's fraud, and then there's backdoor routers, fenced logins, malware, and bribing AT&T staff seven figures to unlock 2m phones


One of the few cases

where I'm cheerfully saying "ha ha" at both the "victim" and the perp. 'Cause they're all criminals.

This is not the cloud you're looking for.... Oracle's JEDI mind tricks work as Trump forces $10bn IT project to drop out of warp


here's the thing...

This review may actually be a really good thing, but Trump's narcissism, favouritism and amateurism means that I will forever suspect his motives on anything.

So if this review is a good thing, I'm chalking it up to dumb luck.

Legal bombs fall on TurboTax maker Intuit for 'hiding' free service from search engines


Re: A lot of commies in here

Says a lot about either your tax system or your populace if most people aren't competent to file their own taxes...

I've lived in a couple of countries where the guvmint published its own tax software (or filing website). Quick and painless and free for everyone.

Requiring commercial parties to help people pay their taxes is not compatible with good government (e.g. ensuring the public understands the laws that apply to them)

Premiere Pro bug ate my videos! Bloke sues Adobe after greedy 'clean cache' wipes files


Re: Biz math

Yes, to everyone who said that the RAID rebuild stresses the components yada yada. We're talking about a one-man shop here who didn't have the sense to back up his data. He doesn't need enterprise grade data protection.

The question, ultimately, is "what is good enough"? In my case, wat I have is 'good enough' and it's a damn sight better than what most people have :(


Re: Biz math

NAS is primary storage and should be at least RAID 5, so unless your disks all fail truly at once, your primary storage should remain intact. In my experience, disk failures within warranty are handled pretty well by the vendors, so you should be able to restore your redundancy within a week. If you're truly paranoid, add a hot spare. Mixing disk types in a RAID array is something I've always been advised against, though never tried.

Then - on top of the NAS - you need a backup, preferably off-site in case your home or office catches fire or is burgled. In my case, the backup is the "old" NAS disks repurposed to back up ONLY the truly critical data via a USB/SATA adapter.

Ex-Microsoft manager sues former coworkers and Windows giant over claims of sex assault, gender discrimination


Re: Interesting post-employment ban

It'd be interesting to know how that works exactly. I know other companies have a requirement that - if you want to come back - your previous manager has to approve your return. Sounds like Microsoft just formalised the process in case your previous manager leaves.

It's not a bad idea per se (I can think of more than one colleague I'd not want back) but of course - as is alleged here - it's subject to abuse.

Planet Computers straps proper phone to its next Psion scion, Cosmo


Re: I still have

Me too. I also have my 9300i (darker shade of grey, features WiFi) and my E90. My E7, sadly, was stolen.

The fax feature was super handy when receiving the daily summary of new houses on the market from estate agents in teh early 2000s.

First Boeing 777 (aged 24) makes its last flight – to a museum


Re: Feeling old yet?

Huge improvement over what? I hate the standard configuration of most triple 7s - just one long cabin front-to-back on teh -200s and a bulkhead or perhaps some lavatories breaking up teh endless tunnel on the -300s.

The 747 is infinitely preferable as a long-haul aircraft - more space, more visual variety, etc.

Phased out: IT architect plugs hole in clean-freak admin's wiring design


Ah... the bypass switch

Yes. It's a very satisfying and impressive switch to throw.

For years, I have looked for an excuse to install something equally impressive (possibly with arc extinguishers?) at home, but not having much luck...

Well, well, well. Crime does pay: Ransomware creeps let off with community service


Re: Actually, this seems proportionate

Not sure I agree. A year is disproportionate but six weeks of community service plus perhaps 30 days behind bars would seem more appropriate.