* Posts by firu toddo

59 publicly visible posts • joined 2 Jul 2009


Updates are plenty but fans are few in Windows 11 land

firu toddo

Re: "you'll start seeing a new user interface on eligible Windows 10 devices soon"

Not really good comparisons.

Hate it when supermarkets move shit about for no other reason than to force the poor victims wander around and look for the latest hiding places. And hopefully, while searching, they might buy some shit they never wanted anyway. (yes this is a thing!)

The car ting is just silly. https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/car-balk/ might be an urban leg end, but it does illustrate the point......

And for the record, I use MacOS, Linux and use/support Widoze. I only support the last one cos it's pretty profitable ;)

Top Linux distros drop fresh beats

firu toddo

Re: What fresh hell is this?

"Steam availability, compatibility"

I'm running Mint on old HP hardware (Elitebook 8570w Jan 2013) and I can say that Steam works OK for me.

In general the box works well, the OS does what it needs to do without getting in the way and the best bit, updates.

I'm in control of the updates, choose the updates and when to install them. When they're installed they work.

Windows 11 unable to escape the shadow of Windows 10

firu toddo

Re: RE: Start Menu

Or you could have both. Like application grouping and a menu item that says ¨all applications¨ and is alphabetical.

That´s how my linuxbox works. Out of the box too, no buggering about.

How to give Windows Hello the finger and login as someone on their stolen laptop

firu toddo

Re: fingerprint works <25% of time

Just to clarify: MacOS requries you to use the password after every reboot or and then every 14 days.

Not quite right. MacOS will ask for a password MUCH more frequently. Change of network ssid, (its wifi only!), closing the lid and opening it quickly will do it too. As will opening and closing repeatedly. And then sometimes it doesn't! It's Apple, you don't need to know.......

I sometimes miss the little prompt box asking for a password and wonder why my finger has broken!

Lawyer guilty of arrogance after ignoring tech support

firu toddo

Re: Are you sure, this isn't the plot of an IT Crowd epsiode?

It does......but.........I had a custard who insisted on a visit to fix his new, powerless, desktop. I switched it on at the mains.

With the same mains switches he insisted be turned off each night. He forgot computers need power.

That's probably my fault for talking about magic smoke and pixies ;)

Thunderbird email client is Go for new plumage in July

firu toddo

Re: See me after class

That'll be all those iPhones. Can't see why anyone would use Apples mail client otherwise.

I'm guessing 'cos I can't be arsed checking. ;-)

Go ahead, be rude. You don't know it now, but it will cost you $350,000

firu toddo

Re: reputation?

Many many moons go a work colleague bought a new Ford in the August buying spree. Promptly went on holiday and to the other end of the country and while away the gearbox failed.

Ford couldn't get a new box so told the local dealer to basically bugger the cost and sort it. Customer was taken to his holiday destination, dealer took a gearbox out of a new stock car, replace the failed one to get the customer on his way. Car was delivered back to the customer. No car for three days of a two week holiday, a tiny price to pay.

Yes, he did stick by Ford, yes, he told everyone how good they were.

So it does work.......

Scanning phones to detect child abuse evidence is harmful, 'magical' thinking

firu toddo

Scan This!

Call me paranoid, but!

This proposed legislation and the crazy technical solutions being proposed has nothing to do with preventing child abuse. ('Protecting the children' is a typical dog whistle that is often applied to proposals to shame opponents into keeping shtum. I mean, only a pervert would argue against any measure to protect kids, right?)

It hasn't got much to do with the 'Prevention of terrorism' either. Using mass surveillance suggests we are all terrorist suspects. Trawling the millions of private messages of tens of millions of UK citizens every day, for say, a thousand terrorist plots is insane. You'd need to know who they were first, and getting an anonymous mobile phone isn't that hard. Or perhaps stopping using a mobile phone for their plotting.....

But illegal speech? Now that's more like it! Well not illegal speech, more like speech that's of interest to someone. Political opponents, trade unionists, whistle blowers, or anyone whose speech might be said to be illegal by some future politician.

Again, I might be paranoid,but that doesn't mean the buggers aren't out to get us!

Where's a black helicopter when I need it?

Mine's the one with the tracker in the pocket!

More than 4 in 10 PCs still can't upgrade to Windows 11

firu toddo

Re: Nothing much against Win11 but can't see the point!

I run Linux GUI apps daily. Not gonna get a new and expensive Win11 box to do that when my 7 year old ThinkPad does it faster and better without Win11 and a copy of my go to Linux distro........

My other daily driver is an even older HP EliteBook portable workstation. Came with Win10, won't go to Win11. And again, I'll not be replacing this second user clunker just for Win11.

I replace my (generally) second user hardware when it no longer lights up. Not when M$ says.

Microsoft plans to dig through your Edge Collections to make suggestions

firu toddo


Now I understand how searching for tractors gets you Porn.....

Thinnet cables are no match for director's morning workout

firu toddo


I managed a factory back in the day. When our new MRP/MPS boxes went in the installer left a huge coil of cable in the corner of the warehouse for a yet to be commissioned office on the other side of the wall.

Super, until the entire warehouse fell off the network. Seems the terminator had failed.

But that will happen if you drop a 800kg pallet of stuff on it. Took half a day to figure out where the terminator was.

Learning points from this were, one tell someone what you've done and two, don't put the coil of cable and terminator on the warehouse floor.

We have redundancy, we have batteries, what could possibly go wrong?

firu toddo

Re: Only one generator?

LOL, we had two UPS's and servers with twin PSUs

And several racks powered exclusively from one UPS.

And that UPS had a defective battery. Can you say recover SQL cluster?

Nationwide Building Society's Faster Payments turn into Slower Payments for 2022

firu toddo

Not a failure....

Just delaying their success.

Good job I wasn't desperate for my money. As others have said, Starling is the future, at least for me.

You've stolen the antiglare shield on that monitor you've fixed – they say the screen is completely unreadable now

firu toddo

Re: HAZMAT suit please, nurse, gloves please!

Spillages, I've seen a few!

One was a desktop with a failed PSU, a not uncommon problem but, nothing to do with the spillage. No the spillage problem was the full sugar coke that had been left under the machine to dry and glued it to the desk! Both desk and computer bore the scars of that incident.

Another was a desktop that failed because of a spillage. The call said something had gone wrong with the electrickery bits and the magic smoke escaped. Cue yours truly to examine diagnose and fix said box. The number one suspect was a paper cup someone had stood on the system box and forgot about, which then leaked a mysterious liquid.

The mystery liquid was a patients urine.

The hows whys and wherefores of the cup/urine combination were never explained to me. But the various tests and jabs after were truly memorable and served as a reminder to use liquid resistant PPE for ward visits.

Sharing medical records with researchers: Assumed consent works in theory – just not yet in practice

firu toddo

Re: smart as the folks in NHS Digital are

Just to be clear, the NHS didn't run the track and trace system. That was an outsourced shit show overseen by that master of data security Dido Harding.

She oversaw the spending of billions of your quids and then simply stuck an NHS flag in the resulting turd and washed her hands of it all.

Opt-out is the right approach for sharing your medical records with researchers

firu toddo

So much wrong

Automatically opting people in is NOT informed consent. The UK government tried this before. Just forgot to tell us what they were doing. I for one wouldn’t trust them not to try the same again. Those actions call into question the motives behind data sharing. For sure it seems as if the data isn’t really seen as the patients, more like a resource that the medical profession thinks they should control Doing ‘informed consent’ this way is just a way to take something away from the uninformed or those who never get round to it opting out.

Wanting to share our data with everyone is dangerous. Individual patients have no idea who will end up with their data. As for randomising data, HA! At best it’s pseudo random and can be backtracked in the UK. And there’s always the mission creep factor. It’s for medical trials now. But just imagine, that Colostomy you’ve got, how neat would it be if we could offer the patient cheaper stoma care products?

Singapore has many reasons for having better Covid outcomes than other place’s besides data sharing, so comparing Covid outcomes between authoritarian regimes and more liberal regimes isn’t an argument that would persuade me. In fact it strikes me as almost emotional blackmail being used to support a pretty weak proposition.

Logitech MX Keys Mini: Svelte keyboard takes cues from Apple in more ways than one

firu toddo

Re: You can reverse the Fn key default

But can you? MX keys keyboards need some software to do all the fancy stuff. Like actually do any of the stuff Logi advertise.meaningful . Just not on a Linux box where the software isn’t available.

So, Media keys? Nope! All the fancy key assignments? Nope. The fancy keyboard and mouse stuff? Nope.

Logi advertise the full size MX as being compatible with iOS, Windows and Linux, even says so on the box.

But compatibility is a movable feast in many marketing departments.

As a little aside I have a couple of old Apple 2009 ish, wired keyboards that work perfectly, media keys and everything.

Linux Mint sticks by Snap decision – meaning store is still disabled by default in 20.1

firu toddo


Not having the latest kernel doesn't make much difference to me. I tend to use secondhand laptops. On an 8 year old T430s this just flies. OK it's got 8gig ram and an ssd and I turned off the bells and whistles compositor settings, can't spare the battery juice (it only has 80% original capacity ;-) ) and it's a workhorse not a pretty pony. I ran the updater this morning and now I have a shiny 20.1 Xfce install. New features are OK, Snap is no loss, and the whole thing feels snappier.

My last Thinkpad was a chunky old beast and only died when I dropped it, something I did more than once. So four years for 200 quid was pretty good. This one cost 250 quid, I've had for going on four years and it's still like new. But I have stopped balancing laptops on car bonnets!

So it's horses for courses.

Not one to be outdone by Microsoft, Apple's cloud fell over too. Unlike Microsoft, it hasn't said what happened

firu toddo

And its back up......

Or not! Still having issues with new 8th gen iPads. They can't contact the iCloud login servers.

Apples status page (www.apple.com/support/systemstatus/) is all full of green goodness including iCloud sign in. (A note helpfully boasts Issues have been resolved!)

Apples support drones have no idea whats going on and can only offer the less than helpful advice 'try it again in a few days'. It is possible to get into your new shiny without using an iCloud login. But no new App store toys or cloud storage (or anything cloudy from Apple) till they fix it.

Nokia 5310: Retro feature phone shamelessly panders to nostalgia, but is charming enough to be forgiven

firu toddo

Re: Backup phone

No good for this phone. Three only do 3G and up.

Mirror mirror on the wall, why will my mouse not work at all?

firu toddo


Mice, the bane of techies lives! When we still had mice with balls the calls were never ending. Pulling hair, crumbs and general crud off of the rollers was routine. Cos the poor dears couldn't do it themselves. Some of these people replaced hips and heart valves, but cleaning mice balls, nah too hard. And when optical mice came along hundred of older mice got lost, fell off desks and exploded, lost their balls and, even had buttons pulled off.

Then there were the real oddballs. My mouse doesn't work...well if you hadn't cut the cable with a hole punch it probably would.

'I want a mouse with fish in it like Brenda's got'. And the promo mouse really did have fish in it, floating in a liquid inside a plastic bag on the back of the mouse. When it was pointed out the IT bods didn't keep them, she complained to our manager who then asked if we could find one! (variations included flashing LEDs, mice shaped like pills and, small mice for cluttered desks)

A request for a new mouse cos a medico took the orginal mouse from the office computer away with him to prevent cross infection. (Same lunatic who disassembled a live laser printer with forceps!)

The lady who brought her wireless mouse from home and complained it didn't work. Forgot the receiver dongle!

Computer, deactivate self-destruct system requirement, says Sonos... were it on a starship in space, and not a smart-speaker slinger

firu toddo

Re: Surprised Sonos survive?

There's a lot to be said for dumb speakers. I've got a 12 year old pair of Bose bookshelf units that have been hooked up to a laptop/tablet/mp3 player/iPod/phone over their lifetime. Now got that Echo Dot dangling of the input.

And fwiw, my office speakers are 30 years old and 15 years old. (old hifi units and bi-amped surround sound tweeters) I had to use my 20 year old Cambridge amp to drive em though ;)

And yup I can stream music all around the house, I just plug in my network device and away I go. Not as elegant as Sonos kit, a whole lot cheaper and sustainable.

Motorola bounds out the G8 with a harder, better, faster smartphone for the thrifty

firu toddo

Re: Moto seems to be the way to go

You're spot on. Wife's G7 power replaced her old G4, no more updates and a dying battery. For 139GBP it really is an excellent bit of kit.

My 3T is losing battery performance now and when I replace it a MOTO G series will defo be in the frame.The 7T at 550GBP looks a bit pricey by comparison. Despite the great OS support from OnePlus (I've gone all the way to Android 9) I still cringe at the 350 quid premium over a MOTO G.

I know the 7T has a better spec/memory/camera etc but in real life does it make that much difference?

A History of (Computer) Violence: Wait. Before you whack it again, try caressing the mouse

firu toddo

Don't worry, that's normal.

First day of a new contract at an NHS hospital, arrived in the office and the first thing I saw was a tech stood behind his desk holding a 21" CRT monitor in his hands and using it to hit the system box and screaming at Windows.

The explanation really was 'don't worry, that's normal....'

Almost as normal as a doctor who threw a Dell laser across the office.

Three UK goes TITSUP*: Down and out for 10 hours and counting

firu toddo

Re: "experiencing intermittent service"

I was in Brighouse, West Yorks, yesterday. My Three phone was fine all day. Poor couple stood next to me had no service on Three. They were not impressed!

Crunch time: Maplin in talks to sell the business

firu toddo

Re: A great shame, but probably inevitable.

So true, the 'integration' has already begun. Argos stores are already closing and moving into the local Sainburys. Going from a shop front with a logistics operation behind it to a desk in a supermarket might seem a good idea from a short term rent point of view. But it has the potential to cripple the Argos business. Slapping an order collection desk in every supermarket branch isn't enhancing the customer experience in the age of eBay and Amazon.

I work in the town where Argos was within 5 minutes walk from my office. (And only 10 minutes from my house), where I could get most stuff I needed in my lunch break. So why will I drive to an out of town supermarket (that I never use) to pick up a cheap phone that they can have in stock within half a day? Or not, depending on the order cutoff time

Answer, I won't. Amazon had it at my door the following day after I ordered it at six in the evening. (Or at my chosen pick up point near my office!)

Lester Haines: RIP

firu toddo


Go easy Lester. The afterlife is better place now.

Hugs to all his family, friends and colleagues.

Apple assumes you'll toss the Watch after three years

firu toddo

Another non story.

A clickbait headline and a story with more spin than a whip and top!

In truth this story is about how a company calculates an enviromental impact for different classes of products.

The years they use to calculate this are simply an arbitary number, they could use 2 or 5 years and it would change nothing apart from the enviromental impact score.

It certainly wouldn't change the life expectation of a device or my refresh cycle.

What's all this? Welcome to The Register's News Bytes

firu toddo

Short sharp and to the point.

This sucks. Pages look so messy now the mobile site is preferable.

The Register's entirely serious New Year's resolutions for 2016

firu toddo

Re: "more modern and global cultural touchstones"

Touching Stones? FNARR!

(While I still can!)

Fsck Cloudflair

firu toddo

Re: Fsck Cloudflair

Interesting that The Register bangs on about privacy and security but make it as difficult as possible for privacy freaks like me to connect to the site without effectively registering for tracking with Crudflair. And doesn’t use HTTPS for the connection.

There also seems to be an assumption the tor=bad guy. So tor nodes are forced to Crudflair for crapcha verification, and the crapchas are getting more aggressive. Two six character images twisted in to colour contrasting pasta bow shapes at a low resolution.

Crudflair suggest that the targets of this hassle and levels of hassle are under the control of the customer. In this case our beloved Vultures. Any chance of sorting this mess out guys?

TalkTalk plays 'no legal obligation' card on encryption – fails to think of the children (read: its customers)

firu toddo

Re: "Appropriate" has legal force

Maybe Talk Talk did use Rot13 on their data, and did it twice just to be sure.

PHONE me if you feel DIRTY: Yanks and 'Nadians wave bye-bye to magstripe

firu toddo

Door Access?

Pah! I spit on your two cards. Right now, for one organisation, I have a magswipe card for the outer office door, two different pins for inner electronic locks. An RFID card for some other doors, another RFID token for some other doors, a mechanical lock code for some other doors and a pin for the other RFID token the get into another building.

The staff canteen is cash only.

Boeing builds British Airways 787 Dreamliner in 4 minutes

firu toddo

Re: Tail fin

And at 1:43 you get a look at the other side of the fin, it's blank too. That's the side you see the BA logo on as the tail is wheeled in.

'Major' outage at Plusnet borks Brits' browsing, irate folk finger DNS

firu toddo

Re: Biggest concern is time to respond

Probably cos customer support turns the phones off and shuts down at 10pm. Not that it's much good these days when it's open.


Cash-happy BlackBerry slurps one-time rival Good for $425m

firu toddo

Follow the Money.

$73m in profit before tax on $658m from a $6m loss on $966m in the same period last year. Looks like the results of cost cutting rather than an expanding business. But when you look at the current offerings you begin to understand why.

The massive (and confusing) cost of running on site BES12 against the costs of an on site BES5 (and they just went up again!) do suggest RIM are trying to milk the Enterprise market for all they can get. In reality the high costs are driving people to AirWatch and others.

BES12, the multi-platform management tool has no real attraction when other tools can manage the same devices, using the same activesync technology for less cash. The reality is that the more expensive RIM licensing and handset costs mean that I will probably just manage iOS, WIndows and Android phones via activesync using a different management tool.

All in all it is becoming very difficult to recommend RIM/BES/Blackberry as the goto Enterprise platform any more.

DAMN YOU! Microsoft blasts Google over zero-day blabgasm

firu toddo

Re: 90 days are 90 days

"forced to release a rushed patch that may potentially take down a few million customers."

Wow! You think rushing patches might cause problems?

I work in enterprise land. We are very cautious when handling M$ patches. They do have a nasty habit of exploding in your face. Just have a search for 'withdrawn microsoft patches'. (Google not required)

Imagine how happy our 12000 mail users would be if we broke Exchange? Or if we patched our desktops and all the Win7 boxes started to blue screen? And the sheer volume of work to sort out 10 withdrawn and reissued patches in a month makes me cringe.

But at least the users would be secure!


Samsung Gear S: Quick, LAUNCH IT – before Apple straps on iWatch

firu toddo

Re: Battery life

If you get enough wrist action the jerky video would really be jerky! Probably too jerky to promote the required wrist action.

Unless the jerks were synchronised................

Oz biz regulator discovers shared servers in EPIC FACEPALM

firu toddo

Re: You've got to give them a little credit

That this would come out was inevitable given the inability of Aussie bureaucracy to redact PDF's.

Boffins attempt to prove the universe is just a hologram

firu toddo

Re: Excellent

The gods have nothing to do with it. Stuff disappearing is down to mini wormholes that jump about in your house. They connect random places and normally go unnoticed.

Until they suddenly open up! And it's not just socks, the car keys you put in the bowl by the door will end up down the sofa with your change and that little screwdriver you left in the garage. And that bottle opener you used on the sofa is now in the drawer underneath the cutlery. Your sock is now somewhere else, back in the washbasket or under the chair or in the garden.

The mini wormholes open when there is sufficient mass of similar items. This explains why your shirt disappears from the hotel laundry but only socks from your washing machine, the more mass the bigger the item that can pass through the wormhole. So most of that change you got in the pub last night has vanished and is in the kid's pockets or the wife's purse or the change bottle thanks to the mini wormhole and the sheer mass of change. Also why my drill, lawnmower and spade is in the neighbours shed!

Of course this is only a theory. I might be able to prove it if anyone fancies funding my beer habit research.

HP: We're still running the ARM race with Moonshot servers

firu toddo

New unit of measure?

The 'huge' , as in 'packing a huge of computing bang into a space smaller than the standard x86 blade and chassis'.

We need a definition.

I huge is........

Tornado-chasing stealth Batmobile set to invade killer vortices

firu toddo

Re: Not nearly as exciting...

IIRC, Dorothy was a little girl who liked singing and had a likkle dog called Toto. Which is where Twister got the name from.

I have a feeling we're not in Kansas any more.


firu toddo


Just had the misfortune to read El Reg without my usual browser.

Without any adblocking, popup blocking, script control, cookie control and all the rest I never realisedsee what a mess the unfiltered site is.

And El Reg is 'one of the better' sites.

How the hell do people browse the internet tubes without protection?

OWN GOAL! 100s of websites blocked after UK Premier League drops ball

firu toddo

Re: Straightforward enough

No way, dummies are far more useful.

Publishers stand behind Apple in ebook price-fixing fight

firu toddo

Re: Businesses

Except in this case they changed the rules to get less.

EE's revenues dip, but smartphones lure in 200k new contracts

firu toddo

Re: Maybe...

"erm... The article says that they've increased the number of customers they have and that the drop in revenue is down to regulation. How does your comment have any bearing on the article?"


Even if the customer numbers are up the extra customers have not generated enough extra cash to offset the lost revenue from call termination charges being limited.

No one knows how many customers are on 4G. But as EE are not boasting about the 4G uptake it is a safe bet that the uptake is not all of the new customers.

So it could follow the reason might be the massive cost of the contract and the low data allowance on a system that is designed to maximise data flow.

So yeah there was some relevance there.

I know I won't be paying EE prices for 4G. But that is just my opinion (Anecdote).

Netbooks were a GOOD thing and we threw them under a bus

firu toddo

Re: Atom still lives on

Much of the Netbook's demise was down to manufacturers sticking WinXp on the thing. Not that WinXP was bad. More the licensing restrictions from Micro$oft around WinXP and Netbooks limited the hardware it could run on.

But the price was good and cheaper Windows Netbooks meant competition for the Linux Netbooks. An opportunity missed for Linux? For sure, but the manufacturers were their own worst enemy. Weak OSs and/or weak hardware. Xp was always going to clean up. Box shifters loved it 'cos the punters knew XP and were happy to blow a couple or three hundred quid on Windows Netbook.

WIth Win7 those hardware restrictions are gone. Along with the 'competitive pricing' that was available with XP on a Netbook. So no more cheapo power efficient Netbooks.

I'm fine with this?

firu toddo

Re: Stuck between a rock and a hard place?

For years I have deleted all cookies when the browser closes. Not going to change now. So the Reg nag bar comes back every time I log on and visit. Getting pretty pissed off with it I must say. To the point of not bothering with this site any more.

Not just El Reg, same goes for the BBC sites with the stupid big header bar.

For fecks sake, informed consent is one thing, but pissing your visitors off is another. Even is you are making a point.

EU antitrust bigwig offers Apple, publishers ebook truce

firu toddo

Re: re: Why is it

The wholesale of books is like paying for a bunch of licences, buy 10000 for a fiver each. Sell em for whatever you want. But don't sell more than 10000. No different to selling physical stock.

Publisher gets his cash and Amazon carry the risk if the book flops.

The agency model is the publisher saying sell the books for what we say or you can't sell em. If they supply them in lots of 1 or 1000 or 10000 it makes no odds. The publisher is forcing everyone to sell their books at a price they decide.

If the seller and the publisher get together and split the final selling price to the consumer they then have a vested interest in keeping the price high.

Hope this helps.

Chrome browser 'is becoming Number Two'

firu toddo

Nights at the Opera

No surprises then.

Chrome is fast and slick, FIrefox isn't. IE has a very patchy past, Chrome and Firefox less so. Safari is the mobile browser of (Apples) choice, iPad/iPhone. And Opera is like the relative no one talks to but everyone has heard about.

And it will probably continue the same way unless Firefox gets it's collective finger out or Opera & IE get rehabilitated in the publics mind.

Part of my job is compatibility testing. I use Opera, IE, Safari, Chrome and FIrefox to test sites and web apps and in reality there are no really bad browsers anymore. Trouble is Firefox has been getting progressively worse over the last 2 years.

Each new version seems to introduce new problems without fixing the old ones. Firefox on Mac and Windows has become what IE used to be, slow, bloated and buggy with slow rendering, stuttering performance, memory leaks, lock ups and slow loading.

So what to use? Personally I don't entirely trust the Chocolate factory to do no evil (let alone not track my web movements) so Opera on the Mac and IE on Windows it is.

(Seeing that in writing makes me want a shower!)