* Posts by Stevie

7059 posts • joined 12 Jun 2008

£40m wasna enough for ink and toner cartridges in public sector, says Scottish government

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Bah, Ye Ken!

I'll bet that sly bugger Hamish Macbeth is up to his elbows in this.

Erudite, insightful, self-aware and almost human: Give your local database admin a hug – it's DBA Appreciation Day

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Re: It's knowing

Good lad/lassie.

Put the database in read only mode and we'll take a two hour lunch.

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[*mutters*] Right, y'bastard.













--Tek that, y'ungrateful bugger.

When a deleted primary device file only takes 20 mins out of your maintenance window, but a whole year off your lifespan

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Re: Seems like a proper who, me

From a dictionary of Computer Terms, Datalink, Circa 1979: Backup: Something no-one has any time to do because of all the head crashes".

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THE Unix file system?


Finally, a wafer-thin server... Only a tiny little thin one. Oh all right. Just the one...

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"Surely the first thing you do when asked to move a large number of systems is talk to the facilities group to make sure that adequate power & cooling is available. Before plugging things in."

Well where's the fun in *that*?

Half the point of any move is everyone standing in the machine room with arms thrown in the air a-la Calvin and Hobbes shouting blue blazes about blame allocation.

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Re: Bah!

The problems were all from the methodology, and unfavorable comparisons to the first one written - the Mini. Paddy Hopkirk co-wrote that and *he* rewrote the book on how to work on Isigonis's little gem.

The process on car #2 onwards was:

Dismantle car into smallest sub components that make sense.

Re-assemble car, writing down what you did as the assembly instructions.

Write everything in reverse order and call that the disassembly instructions.

And finally:

Don't mention needing a mechanic's pit until the last possible moment.

This is how, for example, it is possible to write instructions for removing the prop-shaft of the TR6 as "Remove the transmission tunnel cover, undo the four bolts securing the front flange to the gearbox, undo the four bolts securing the rear flange to the differential and lower the prop-shaft to the floor."

A. Friend: "Have you lowered the prop-shaft to the floor?'

Me: "Nope. I have lowered the prop-shaft to the chassis cross-member and the twin exhaust pipes."

My choices then were remove the exhaust (BAD IDEA) or loosen the engine mounts, remove the transmission mount securing bolt, jack up the gearbox and swear the prop-shaft out of the car.

To rub it in, said prop shaft was only about 18" long. It was very dispiriting how it resisted removal.

That said, most jobs on the TR6 were super-easy if you had tools. I could swap out the axle UJs, all four of 'em, in a couple of hours. Up at 9, have tea, swap out UJs, clean up, in pub at lunchtime.

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Re: still wish I'd kept it


Sold mine 6 months before they became collectible.

Story of my life.

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Re: flicked the power switch on/off several times

A Catweazle Failure! Haven't seen one of those for a while.

(Catweazle was an alchemist from the Norman invasion who time-traveled to 1970s UK. Introduced to the miracle of electric light he kept turning it on - "Shine little sun!" - and off until the inevitable "fring!" moment, at which point he sighed and muttered his catchphrase: "Nuthin' works!")

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Least fave job: dismantling the chassis of a UPS so I could remove a dud battery that had grown a bunion on one side.

Reminded me of all the times I went to work on my old TR6 blithely assuming that this time the Haynes manual would have all the required steps in it, and wouldn't require an extra day for all the things the double-barrel-named idiot who "co-authored" it forgot to mention.

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Rephrase that as "flames shot out" and you get the extra point for the tote.

Sadly, no description of leg hair catching fire, or of emergency trouser evacuation (hurhur) but you can't have everything.

I was screwed over by Cisco managers who enforced India's caste hierarchy on me in US HQ, claims engineer

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I had to actually tell a young Indian colleague of mine to stop going into the men's room while the (female) janitorial staff member was in there trying to do her job.

He was quite outraged until I quietly reminded him he was working in a caste-less society and could actually be brought up on harassment charges if he continued to do what he was doing.

And although I've had similar words with one or two other Indian colleagues, I have to say I've found this to be not so much a cultural thing as a personal gittishness thing.

Remember that black hole just 1,000 light years from Earth? Scientists queue up to say it may not exist after all

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Re: It's called rigour

You missed the bit where scientists fudge the data so their pet "hypotheses" become theories, and the bit where the graduate student gofers can't make excel work properly and don't do math that well either and can't or won't check their work for reasonableness, and the bit where the editors of the publications the papers appear in don't do their due diligence on the tables of figures sent them for printing to see they make sense.

Other than that, a perfect description of the academic scientific process.

Apple said to be removing charger, headphones from upcoming iPhone 12 series

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"Trying to reduce waste or funnelling punters into investing in AirPods?"

Ooh! Ooh! I know the answer to this one!

It's now safe to turn off your computer shop: Microsoft to shutter its bricks-and-mortar retail locations worldwide

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Zune was produced for 5 years before it was dropped, and I believe the reasons were that it had failed to grab significant market share, wasn't even in the top 5 devices, and that a study showed that everyone was switching to using smartphones for music consumption.

And let's not forget that Apple dropped support for iPod classic *and* the iPod nano that had a wheel and screen in favor of a phone-like device (in one case that was laughable small).

Because everyone was going towards phone-based music (and Apple would love you to switch to a music rental model like Amazon and the music industry in general would).

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

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Re: We had the inverse issue

I had one of those.

The MGR was the person who controlled the licenses for the software involved.

MGR: "Why can't you implement Project Nowin?"

Me: "Because we don't have the proper license to do it the quick way. Will you authorize a license or do you want me to do it the [days] long way?" [a day elapses]

MGR: "Let's call the vendor"

V: "Does this guy know what he's doing?"

Me: "The message from the software is in clear English. We don't have the proper license." [a day elapses]

V: "You need a different license." [ a day elapses]

Mgr: "We have two different licenses for this? Who is responsible? Who made that decision?"

Me: [In head: You did of course, you extremely annoying waste of space]

Me [in real life]: "A legacy decision from before the time I joined the department. No-one remembers making that decision or why. Do you have a license for me? We no longer have the time left to implement Project Nowin the long way." [etc]

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Re: family

Daughter: We need a new lawnmower.

Me: What? Why? What's it doing?

Daughter: Well, I was cutting the grass and I worked until the blue smoke started coming out as usual when ...

Me: BLUE SMOKE???!!! The mower does not make blue smoke "as usual"! It makes blue smoke when the grass is too long and too wet and you try and make it cut the lot in one go! Blue smoke means the engine is overheating and burning oil!

Daughter: Do you want to know the problem or not?

Me: Go on ...

Daughter: When I click the lever only one wheel turns.

Me: So the mower works (apparently yea unto the gates of death). Your problem is that you have to push it by hand. Right. I will fix it, you will cut the grass more often and take more time to do it.

Daughter: (Rolls eyes).

Turned out that it needed a pair of front wheels to replace the ones with stripped gears. $18.

New mower of similar type? $500+

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Re: The only time clutching a clipboard is acceptable

Or if you are James Bond attempting to gather intelligence on the goings-on inside the desert lab of Willard Whyte.

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Re: family

Typical scene - I get in wife's car, start it, flames shoot out of the windshield defroster vents.

Me: "How long has it been doing that?"

Wife: "Doing what?"

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

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Re: Please kill our machine, it can't be done... Challenge accepted

I wanted to see if a Raspberry Pi would break under stress so I coded a quick script to clone itself and churn a bit.

Less than a minute later the whole thing was shirtcanned gracefully by the system for being a dick.

$35 computer does job properly. Newsateleven.

'One rule for me, another for them' is all well and good until it sinks the entire company's ability to receive emails

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Re: Been There...

Was the server speaker enabled? Did the software have "beep on problem" event defined?

If not, why not?

Pong servers for the win.

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Minimum requirements for Windows 95 were 4MB / 8MB

But Stateside, most of-the-shelf PCs were sold with 16mb if they came with Win95.

And they all did.

Ooo, a mystery bit of script! Seems legit. Let's see what happens when we run it

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Re: "fan-fold paper"

The proper term is 4-part.

You'll be calling it Z-fold next.

If Daddy doesn't want me to touch the buttons, why did they make them so colourful?

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Re: Not IT, but...

I took my 18 month old in to work on the way to the Bronx Zoo (pauses for inventive comments about zoos and colleagues) and introduced her to the other guy in my small department.

He knew she loved The Lion King and he had just returned from a safari somewhere in Africa, so he greeted her by saying "Hacuna Matata!"

Her arm shot out, her little finger pointed at him, and she shouted in a voice that carried across the open plan, city block sized office: "PIG!"

My colleague had not seen The Lion King and was unaware that the line he had quoted was used by the warthog. His expression at being called a pig by a very small child was classic.

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Re: z-fold? (4 cocnuthead)


Bloody 90s era grads. Not enough they make OOP confusing by using stupid names for old concepts, they are trying to subvert the proper naming conventions for continuous stationery now to make them sound more clixby.

Horsewhipping too good, fought two wars, Mafeking, rationing, etc etc etc.

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Re: [LHC] emergency-stop button

If you press the emergency stop button on the LHC France and Switzerland change places.

That's why it is labelled "Emergency Stop: NEVER USE".

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Re: Press the button Max ...

Nice Great Race reference there, Zarno. Have an e-beer.

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Re: But I didn't touch nuthin!

- Developed Business Synergies resulting in an Holistic Re imagining of the Relevant Verticals.

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Re: The magically levitating disc pack

Airborne? As I recall the only button on an EDS would cause the heads to retract with a click and the drive to power down (or the disc to spin up and the heads to pop out in their trademark "sticking out the tongue" search for the pack directory).

There was a big red "FAULT" light, but I never saw it lit and it wasn't a button (though it looked like one). I was told by an operator that when that lit a disc might go walkabout, but I didn't believe him. He was full of such tall tales.

I've even seen an EDS 60 with the lid lifted from the back while it was running so the engineer (clad in the ICL trad carpet slippers) could do stuff with a scope. No disc packs left the cabinet.

There must've been a later model, fitted with a "launch disc" button.

Gone in 9 seconds: Virgin Orbit's maiden rocket flight went perfectly until it didn't

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Re: Nerdy but interesting...

Very cool! Learn summat every day.

E-beer for you, whoever you are.

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Re: Oh. Again?


Turns out Space is hard, not at all the doddle it is on the TV.

Every man and his dog can do that

Off you go then. Don't forget the GoPro footage. "Pictures or doesn't happen" and all that.

Broadcom sends its England-based staff back into office as UK lockdown eases – though Welsh workers get a free pass

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Re: Why?

One word: Meetings!

I mean, f*ck that "Teams" shirt. Everyone talking at once and the boob who answers from a public park bench next to roadworks, and the idiot who bought a headset and thinks you have to have the microphone right in front of your gob so when they speak it is deafening and when they listen it is like having Darth Vader on the f*cking line, and that tw*t who thinks no-one can hear the TV belting out Star Trek: The Next Generation in the "background".


Where's the Tylenol?

Absolutely everyone loves video conferencing these days. Some perhaps a bit too much

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Re: It's behind you ...

E-beer awarded for this great tale.

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ATC radio

Brilliant! E-beer, untouched by human hands, guaranteed COVID-19-free, awarded.

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Re: It's behind you ...

Sorry, chuBb, I was enjoying your story but you let your rage become your master.

Punctuation. Paragraphs.

If your story is good enough to tell, why obliterate it with one long run-on sentence no-one would read on a bet?

First impressions count when the world is taken by surprise by an exciting new (macro) virus

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Re: It seems almost the entire world ignores warnings

Another "sheeple"-induced downvote from me, and the decision no to offer you an e-beer.

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Re: Interesting, but another which is closer to "on call" than "who me?" - perhaps "why me?"

That was because they discontinued the free T shirt for a story scheme.

SpaceX beats an engine failure to loft another 60 Starlink satellites

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I presume the first stage has a contingency "Yee-Haa!" klaxon to announce an imminent splashdown?

Come to Malmö for St Peter's. Stay for the Bork

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Run Away!

Møøse bites can be nästi.

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I thought Malmo had burned to the ground months ago. I'm almost certain I heard that from a trusted source somewhere ...

British Army adopts WhatsApp for formal orders as coronavirus isolation kicks in

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Re: "the Army's top Sergeant Major"

Sergeant Major of The Army, I think.

Slightly different beast.

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Re: Whatsnext

V. witty Wilde. Have an e-beer.

Not exactly the kind of housekeeping you want when it means the hotel's server uptime is scrubbed clean

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Re: It's the same everywhere

On our front deck we have a deck box with a label on the lid "Please leave packages in the box".

I come home and I find packages next to the box, leaning against the box and on one classic occasion on top of the box.

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could't find a spare plug

So much $$$ computer equipment.

So few $ sockets labelled "for janitorial staff use ONLY".

"accident" looking for a good time to happen.

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It’s always the cleaner.

Nah, though that's what I guessed for this one.

I had a print server in a remote location that went offline and rebooted three times a day. That one was sited next to a coffee machine ...

I had another that went offline every night at around 7pm. Turned out that the socket was wired inline with the light switch per NY code ...

Then there was the time an entire building filled with data centers went offline because the building owner decided to remove a partition wall and the sawzall made short work of the wall and the forearm-sized bundle of optic fiber wiring inside it ...

And around the same time another building not far from that went dark, then caught fire when the electrician called in to install a circuit decided to drill a new cable access hole in the breaker box without pulling the main breaker, demonstrating just how much electricity is needed to set light to the fizzing corpse of an electrician ...

Fresh virus misery for Illinois: Public health agency taken down by... web ransomware. Great timing, scumbags

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Hello doctor Chandra.

Wait a minute. Wait a minute.

Please send 1000 bitcoin daisy daisy ...

Latest bendy phone effort from coke empire spinoff Escobar Inc is a tinfoil-plated Samsung Galaxy Fold 'scam'

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Re: Unique Moto G6 for sale.

This is an ugly word, this "scam".

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it never even sounded even remotely plausible

Not without the inclusion of a free shoulder-surfing autonomous selfie mini-drone it didn't.

AMD, boffins clash over chip data-leak claims: New side-channel holes in decades of cores, CPU maker disagrees

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Re: @ including Javascript

Ger Rid Of Useless Javascript Now!


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