* Posts by Tim Warren

32 posts • joined 12 Nov 2008

Google kicks itself out of its own cache when serving AMP pages

Tim Warren


.. of course if webmasters actually bothered to code their own websites for the functionality they need rather than pulling in some huge library of code, that they only need a fraction of to do something that the end user probably doesn't want... then we wouldn't need AMP in the first place!

Foiled again! Brit military minds splash cash on killing satellites with... food wrapping?

Tim Warren

The benefit of launching from the equator diminishes as the orbital inclination of the satellite increases. A satellite intended to map the earth would want to fly over the poles so advantage launching from the equator would be lost..

Don't make Aug 21 a blind date: Beware crap solar eclipse specs

Tim Warren

Re: Genuine question

Yes, a plane makes a good viewing platform. We used standard viewing glasses.

Source: I watched the 11th August 1999 total solar eclipse from a plane above Cornwall, UK. Totally clear view, unlike those on the ground who had severe cloud cover. Flying with the path of the shadow meant we could increase our viewing time a little, though not as much as the special Condorde flight above us. The BBC also filmed from an RAF Hercules.

Google to give 6 months' warning for 2018 Chrome adblockalypse – report

Tim Warren

Re: Splain it to me?

I suspect rather than a paywall for each site implemented by that site owner, rather you will have a payment card linked to your google account and google will keep track of the sites you visit and then take & make payments appropriately. It would be seamless to the user after initial setup. If you don't have a method of payment, then yes you will receive a paywall or other webpage.

Crapness of WannaCrypt coding offers hope for ransomware victims

Tim Warren

Key recovery

... so if the read only files in clear text are not deleted, and there is a newly created version of that file in cipher text, then is it not possible to deduce the key? If the coder has used the same key across all files (I think likely) then the encrypted files should be recoverable, should they not?

US citizens crash Canadian immigration site after Trump victory

Tim Warren

Re: Wall Building


No need, pledges are already in. ;-)

European Telecoms Standards Institute to World+Dog: please start caring about 5G

Tim Warren

Re: No one cares because it isn't really needed

It's not about individual user data throughput, but rather the aggregate date rate and power savings. The faster the air interface the less time the radio is transmitting or receiving, so the less power it uses. The less time someone occupies a frequency the more people can share the same frequency resource. This is one of the key reasons that low power radio protocols such as Zigbee have a high data rate of 250Kbps when the sensors themselves are likely to only need a fraction of that. A temperature sensor for example might only report the temperature every few seconds, or perhaps minutes, so the radio duty cycle might be something like 0.01%.

10x faster servers? Pop a CAPI in your dome

Tim Warren

FFS el Reg. What is this crap?

Given that this is a tech website, how about actually putting something technical? I'm not explaining this to my grandmother!


How does it work?

Think of PCIe as an old freeway, clogged and with some potholes and with lots of toll booths to navigate (causing latency). In this freeway analogy, PCIe has 16 independent single lanes where cars travel either way. CAPI, by contrast, is a very wide superhighway built adjacent to the old PCIe interstate, with much higher speed limits (3x), way fewer toll booths (latency caused by interfaces), and adds coherency (which means that each car knows exactly where it’s going and how to get there.)

It is the increased speed of the wires, plus the radical reduction of interfaces to negotiate, which gives the potential for 10x speed-up.

HMRC research finds 'resistance' to proposals to shift contractor tax compliance burden

Tim Warren

Nah - that's only for junior doctors racking in £22k+!

Surveillance forestalls more 'draconian' police powers – William Hague

Tim Warren

Uk Still bound by ECHR if outside EU

@ Bernard M. Orwell

The ECHR is part of the Council of Europe which is separate from, and distinct from the EU. The UK will remain a member of the Council of Europe should be leave the EU, and thus will be bound by ECHR terms.

O2 chief techie: Light up dark fibre and unleash the small cell army

Tim Warren

Re: Pay "Rates" on Dark Fibre?

The VOA rates are a big hurdle to the laying of fibre by anyone other than BT and Virgin Media. For all other companies the rates are charged per kilometer of fibre on a sliding scale that drops with the greater amount of fibre, thus favouring larger players. The rates paid on fibre bear no relation to the revenue nor profit of the company So a small company wishing to put in a tail to a single customer may find that the rates on that line are greater than the end rate charged to the customer, so the company must lose money in order to get its installed length up, and thus lower the per kilometer tax bill until they become profitable.

BT & Virgin Media however were deemed too complex to estimate their fibre network, so they just agree what to pay as a percentage of their profit.

A UK digital driving licence: What could possibly go wrong?

Tim Warren

I've heard a a story from a biker who sent of his driving licence for renewal following a change of address. When the licence was returned his motorbike entitlement had vanished, leaving only cars etc. When he argued it DVLA claimed to never have known about his missing entitlement despite. He was forced to re-sit his test. His insurance then rocketed as he was now considered a new rider, and not one with 9 years of experience as was the case before.

As a result when I've changed my licence I always take a scan / photocopy of it before sending it off.

What could possible go wrong with a fully digital government database?...

If NatWest texts you about online banking fraud, don't click the link

Tim Warren

This might be on the rise.

I've recently received phishing text of similar guise claiming to be PayPal. Correctly addressed me by name in the text too so not just blanket spam but rather a targeted and well executed exercise.

Institute of Directors: Make broadband speeds 1000x faster than today's puny 2020 target

Tim Warren

iperf3 tells me that my puny little Intel i5 dual core can manage a little over 40Gb/s, which isn't too shabby.

Hands on with Xiaomi's Mi 5: Great smartphone, but when do we get it?

Tim Warren

Re: Dual SIM

It's all about availability. No network provides sufficient 3G / 4G coverage when I am out and about, so I need something that can seamlessly switch data between networks in a fail over manner. You can get SIMs with domestic roaming, but they can't handle inter-network hand off as far as I know, so one connection must completely disappear before the phone will start looking for alternative networks. There can be a significant time gap when this occurs.

Tim Warren

Dual SIM

The world as his dog are now making dual SIM phones (sadly not often available direct in UK market). There are two types. The first has a single MODEM which can be switched over between SIMs, though only one is active at any given time. The second is dual MODEMs where you can have two active connections. Unfortunately they are always GSM / UMTS / LTE combo partnered with GSM only. Great for phone calls, not so good for data.

What I need is to maintain two (useful) data connections - so I need is a phone with *TWO* UMTS capable MODEMs.

Does such thing exist?

BT dismisses MPs' calls to snap off Openreach as 'wrong-headed'

Tim Warren

Re: Privatisation


Funnily enough in 1990 they had a microchip design that could have received and driven 2.4Gbs over 10Km of fibre for $5 and they were pulling the fibre at around £10 for the 10Km.

So your house could have had 2.4Gb fibre installed 25years ago for massively less than the cost of the actual installation.

And what stopped it? Privatisation!


I though that Thatcher blocked BT from rolling out Fibre as she wanted to provide some breathing room for the new cable TV networks to get a foot in the door.

Ex-Microsoft craft ale buffs rattle tankard for desktop brewery

Tim Warren

Re: "Real Ale, by contrast, does have a definition."

If you want gluten free, adventurous beers then you could try looking up my father's micro brewery.

Here's a recent BBC piece on it where he crafted a beer using 50 year old yeast to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Maris Otter malt - regarded as one of the finest malts.


Slander-as-a-service: Peeple app wants people to rate and review you – whether you like it or not

Tim Warren

Re: Antisocial Media

... Antisocial network. Lol. I'm off to register www.getoutofmyfacebook.com.

Slough or Antarctica? Well, at least Antarctica has penguins

Tim Warren

If you want to know what it's like in Antarctica


A blog written by an old friend of mine from his year+ spent there as an Electronics Engineer & Meteorologist. A very good read and some excellent photos.

Plusnet customers SWAMPED by spam but BT-owned ISP dismisses data breach claims

Tim Warren

Nothing new here

I also use unique identifiers for every site or company i give my details to. No details of which are stored on my servers. It just blindly accepts everything.

The following companies have also had data breaches (some that they deny).

Last FM


The IET (formerly the IEE, Institute of Electrical Engineers)

WEX photographic

Linked In

drop Box

EDA board

Seriously doubt that my server has been compromised as only a select few addresses above have ever been used for spam, and the ones that are seem to come in all at the same time indicating that each breach is separate and unique. If my server was compromised then i would expect spam to hundreds of valid addresses.

Brit inventor Dyson challenges EU ruling on his hoover's energy efficiency ratings

Tim Warren

Re: Sort out the car industry mpg figures while you're at it...

Totally agree with you on this one. Apparently my VW Passat Sport 177PS returns 67.3mpg Extra-Urban 60.1mpg combined, and 50.4 urban.

Well I can tell you that I have never seen any more than 55mpg, and that was taken over a relatively short section of scottish highlands A road at about 50mph.

For real world figures consisting of mostly extra-urban driving on A roads, plus a little motorway driving, in the Cambridgeshire fens see:


I'm not a fast driver either BTW...

Ofcom probes BT over fibre pricing after repeated gripes from TalkTalk

Tim Warren

Re: erm

You are confusing BDUK with BT's private investment. Furthermore TT are not complaining about paying to use the product, but rather that BT Group shift margin from retail to Openreach in order to squeeze competitors out of the market, and thus an abuse of their position.

'Leccy-starved Reg hack: 'How I survive on 1.5kW'

Tim Warren

Re: Inverters for Buffering / Storage


Look out for APC Smart UPS XL on eBay advertised as not working. Make sure you go for the XL version as it has an uprated charger so you can connect very large external batteries to it. Normal versions may not be able to charge large batteries.

I bought my APC Smart UPS 750 XL on eBay for £3 (three quid!) as broken. 95% of the time it is simply a case of changing the batteries. I just asked the seller to discard the batteries and send me the empty chassis. I then added 4 off 12v 75Ah gel cells externally. I get over 8 hours run time with a 300w load.

My gel cells are CSB Battery GPL12750 from http://www.csb-battery.co.uk/products/gpl.asp. Again bought of eBay. Some guy over ordered for their data centre by 8 off batteries, so I picked them up for £30.

Other brands of UPS may also be worth considering - I have only ever owned APC's, and one massive Chloride job.

Tim Warren

Inverters for Buffering / Storage

You should look at http://www.victronenergy.com/. They sell a lot of inverters to people who live on canal boats and such like. Their shore power is often limited to 8 amps. Victron sell versions of their inverters which can create a local electricity grid, and bring in power from an external source, or from storage batteries. You set the current limit from the grid (or in many cases a generator) and any excess demand is sourced from the batteries. When the demand from the house / boat reduces, any excess capacity from the grid is used to charge batteries.

SMA make the Sunny Island which is also worth considering.

Don't ever use car batteries for this purpose. Car batteries are designed to supply high current for very short periods of time. To do this they have a high number of very thin lead plates. If you discharge the battery too far the plates distort, short out and eventually the battery dies. Also beware of "leisure" batteries. These are often only marginally better than car batteries for deep discharge. You bet bet is to look for Fork Lift batteries, even second hand ones. Companies who run fork lifts will discard them once they get to the stage where they can not support the fork lift for the full 8 hour shift. Your demands will be far smaller, so you should still get many years (5+, perhaps 10) from a well chosen second hand battery. Fork Lift batteries can last over 20 years from new if looked after well.

With the price of scrap lead, you shall not be wasting money - think of the batteries as an investment.

The boys over on www.navitron.org.uk/forum/ have lots of experience in inverters and batteries.

Intel adding wireless power sharing for smartphones and laptops

Tim Warren

Why Nikola Tesla was the greatest geek who ever lived


Vodafone ships Mariposa-infected HTC Magic

Tim Warren

Virus Scanners on Phones...

It's only a matter of time until we need virus scanners on our phones. Then, they too will run like dogs, and the battery life will be measured in minutes.... :-(

Femto cells with big ideas

Tim Warren

@ Just a shame...

From 1st July you will be able to buy them from Vodafone!

World's smallest working fuel cell developed

Tim Warren

Hydrogen RC Car... that's rubbish!

Now a Hydrogen powered RC Plane... now you're talking...


iPlayer chief pushes tiered charging for ISPs

Tim Warren

Everybody Stop and Listen...

Everyone stop whining. If you want full speed unlimited, unthrottled access, then buy a leased line, and pay leased line charges. They represent the TRUE cost of internet connectivity.

10Mb is from around £600/month, and 100Mb from £800 depending on proximity to POP & exchanges etc.

It costs your ISP about £10pm for the DSL port, then about £0.42/GB data over the Centrals, and then about the same for transit / servers etc. So if you are paying less than £10pm fixed cost, plus £2/GB (ie £20pm for 5GB, £30 for 10GB cap etc) then your ISP will be struggling to make a profit, with the expected speed results.

Go figure.

It's cheapest for your ISP to ditch the BT Centrals and to move your data over their own network, hence why leased line is half the cost per GB of data than compared to DSL. (10Mb = 3240GB/month max data transfer. £600 / 3240GB = £0.18/GB)

Employees sue for unpaid Windows Vista overtime

Tim Warren
Thumb Down

@ Progress - dontcha love it?

Not but the time the corporate IT luvvies have got their hads on it, and it's had a year's worth of general use. My company supplied laptop takes around 10 minutes to boot! Time for a cuppa tea and a read of the news paper before I start work.

Broadband speed testers fail the test

Tim Warren

Bandwidth Costs Money!

I foolishly signed up with Virgin ADSL 8Mb product, and for the first month it was blistingly fast with the full 8Mb. (Just long enough to get out of the grace period which you can reject the product) Then from then on it was incredibly slow - I even moved house (and exchanges) but this made no difference at all, proving that it is their network that was at fault an not the line.

Speeds I received were close to other people's speeds at circa 18Kbps (even from virgin.com servers, both FTP and HTTP). The funny thing however was the speeds reported from speed tester websites were constistantly higher - talk about traffic prioritising! When I eventually obtained my MAC so that I could leave the service went back to a much improved speed (3.5Mbps actually which is my line speed in my new house).

Draw your own conclusions, but I'm never going back.

When I moved providers I did some thinking, and came to the conclusion that you get what you pay for, and best to avoid providers that offer cheap products.

I think most people here realise that Bandwidth Cost Money!!!

... For ADSL products (excluding LLU) costs to the ISP ex VAT are... (From BT 1/1/2009)

£6.72 per month per user IPStream (from house to BT Network)

£1,029,000 per annum per 622Mbps Central (From ISP to BT Network)

A 622Mbps central can support a maximum of 25,600 users, equating to average 21.7Kbps throughput when inefficiencies are taken into account. This gives a minimum central cost per user of £1,029,000 / 25600 / 12 = £3.34 per month.

£6.72 + £3.34 + VAT = £11.82 / month / user.

Service with such an over subscribed central will be poor to say the least. Using 15,500 users per central will give better expeience, but will cost £5.51 / user / month + VAT, which brings the minimum costs to the ISP to £14.37 / user / month.

Then there are IP Transit Charges to get your data from your ISP to other ISPs, Peering costs (same reason, but cost neutral), Data Centre Costs, advertising, admin, "Free routers"... you get the idea!

Can Virgin really provide a service with just £3.63 (inc VAT) slack to cover all the items listed above? I think not.

Vote with you feet people. Pay a decent price, get a decent service!



Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2020