* Posts by Beritknight

30 publicly visible posts • joined 26 Aug 2009

Australia cuts Microsoft bill by AU$100m



"CTO John Sheridan wonders why anyone would upgrade Office again"

I couldn't see any mention of that in the article text. Was the relevant paragraph cut in editing or something?

Windows Vista woes killed MS Pinball


How does Win7 fit in?

So there's no pinball in Win7 either, and it seems to be doing OK. How does that fit into the theory?

Microsoft gouges Australia lightly on Surface



Also worth noting that the Australian price apparently includes two years of warranty.


(in the Details section of the page, go to the Warranty tab).

The US price is a tiny bit cheaper, but only includes 1 year.

Oz sysadmin says Windows 8 not ready for business


Oz Sysadmin here - listen to me dammit!

Wow, I never realised that being an Oz Sysadmin made me an authority worthy of headlines! But now that I know that I, as an Oz Sysadmin myself, declare Kieran Cummings review to be lazy and sloppy reporting and not worthy of a headline.

As far as I can tell, the article has two major complaints. Firstly, that Exchange support in the Mail app is "broken". Secondly, that Metro apps require a Microsoft account (formerly known as a Live! account) to run, and won't work if logged in using a domain account.

Now, I don't know enough about Kieran's environment to troubleshoot it for him, but I will say that the metro Mail app is working fine with my Exchange servers. It's working fine from my home PC which isn't domain joined and it's working fine from my work PC, which IS domain joined. Of course as a good sysadmin running Exchange 2010 and split-brain DNS I made sure ages back that my autodiscover records were properly published both internally and externally. Maybe not everyone does that. Who knows? All I know is the metro Mail app works just as well as any other EAS-based mail client inside my network.

What particularly bothers me is the way that the review starts a paragraph with "I suspect this is due to Active Directory accounts not being Live! accounts" and goes on to bitch about how stupid that is, with out ever bothering to confirm his assumptions (which, for the record, are incorrect). That's extremely lazy reviewing, possibly forgivable in a "review" post on a forum, but really not on a major IT news site like El Reg.

To confirm, yes I have a Win8 RP box joined to my domain, and yes Metro apps work for me, even without a Microsoft account set up. I really doubt I'm the only one out there that this works for.

Apart from metro apps, everything else also works. My Win7 roaming profile came across fine. Outlook is behaving. RSAT installed and gave me all the usual tools. Group policies have all applied fine. Software installed out of group policies installed fine (including Office).

So by the power vested in me as an Oz Sysadmin, I declare Win8 to be the most Ready For Business as any other Release Candidate I've ever used. ;-)

Qantas lets fly with 'net access


Re: News?

"The article makes it sound as though Qantas is the first carrier to do this"

They're the first Australian carrier to do this. It's news in this part of the world =)

Metro breakdown! Windows 8 UI is little gain for lots of pain


Re: I really hate Metro

"Where's the right mouse button on a tablet again?"

You just drag each icon down slightly and then release it. You can select multiple icons on a table just as quickly as you could with a mouse and Ctrl-click on a Win7 PC.

It's one of those features that wasn't there in the Dev Preview and has been greatly improved in the Consumer Preview.

Iran bans Tehran invasion first-person shooter



No, I think you misunderstood that quote. What I *think* he's saying (we could tell for sure if we had the full quote in context) is that EA don't sell BF3 in Iran. Their distributor to that region doesn't carry that particular title. Therefore any copies of the game on store shelves are highly likely to be pirated. Or privately imported I guess, but more likely pirated. If a government crackdown on the games stops those pirated copies from being sold, that's good from EA's standpoint.

Does that make more sense?

Miranda Kerr suffers digital deletion


Not the way it works

Sorry, but that's not the way it works for .au. You can't register domains on a whim like you can with .com, you've got to show a direct relationship between your brand or one of your products to register that .com.au.


auDA cancelled the domain when it became apparent that the guy who registered it didn't have that direct relationship and had therefore lied on his application. What they did was totally in line with their published policies.

Optus launches '3G at home' femtocell

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Mobile phones are only used for facebook these days?

I don't get the data-focused slant on most of the stories I'm reading about Optus and femtocells. I live in a bit of a dip and get weak, spotty reception on all carriers. My phone already uses my WiFi connection when I'm at home, so emails and things come thru fine 24x7. What bothers me is when people call me and because of the room of the house I'm in they get my voicemail.

If a femto cell means I get phone calls and SMS messages *reliably* when I'm at home, then I'm all for it.

The Microsoft mobile reboot needs rebooting


C&P in SMS

"other than Copy Paste (which can't be used in sent or earlier received text messages),"

Yes it can, just not on a word-by-word basis. Press and hold on the sent or old SMS and you'll get a context menu. Options should be Delete, Forward and Copy. Tap Copy. Go to the new message section down the bottom and when the keyboard pops up, there will be a paste icon at the top of it. Tap that.

If you only really wanted the first line of the sent SMS or something you can then use the normal tap a word and drag to select more words process to highlight all the unwanted text and tap delete.

Microsoft to Apple: 'Oh, yeah? Well, your font is too small'

Jobs Horns


That's exactly what Microsoft are asking for!

This isn't a case of Microsoft and Apple both claiming to own the name "App Store". This case is Apple trying to claim they own it and Microsoft claiming it's a generic term for a store that sells applications.

If Apple win they get a trademark and the right to sue anyone else who calls their application store an "App Store". If Microsoft win, anyone can use the term App Store to describe their application store. Apple will be able to keep using the term Apple App Store if they loose, they just won't be able to sue Microsoft for using the term Microsoft App Store.

So there you go, Microsoft are arguing for exactly the same thing you are. Scary, isn't it? =)

Samsung shows off tablet-cum-netbook convertible


Change O/S on slide?

So when I'm leaning back on the couch reading a Reg article and then I see a comment that I just have to reply to, what happens when I put the tablet on the coffee table and slide the screen up so I can type properly? Does it flick back into Windows 7, where I can't access the web browser I was running under Android, meaning I need to fire up Chrome on W7 and browse back to the same page? Seems painful.

I see the change of orientation as something you do after you start a task and decide you'd be more comfortable reading the document you have open if you were on the couch or whatever. It should be an organic, quick thing that happens when you decide to change the way you're working. It shouldn't mean stopping and thinking before you open a browser or document "where am I planning on working on this, and should I close the keyboard *before* I start?". One operating system is the correct number here methinks.

Zuckerberg: the iPad 'is not mobile'


3G = Mobile?

By that definition, my 13" Dell with a mini-PCI 3G card is a "Mobile device" as well. Is it at all sensible to suggest that there should be a specific facebook app for my laptop? I don't think so, and clearly anyone who disagrees with me is wrong and deserves to be mocked =)

Spam blacklist snafu prompts global gnashing of teeth

Paris Hilton

Excellent service for free? Not SORBS...

A valid view if you were talking about any of the reputable RBLs out there with well documented policies and good practices. It does however sound like you've never actually had to deal with SORBS directly. They really are the arse-end of the RBL community.

SORBS are absolutely horrible to deal with, delisting process when they get something wrong and list a static range as dynamic is painful, and usually requires manual intervention by the one-and-only person behind SORBS, Matthew/Michelle. And that usually only happens after the correct "payment" has happened.

Seriously, do some reading on the history of this RBL


and if you're actually using them anywhere, change to a better RBL. There are lots of other organisations that do the same thing better.

Paris - because Michelle Sullivan has about that much clue.

Windows Phone 7 misses big-business support tools


Windows Phone 7

While I agree with most of your points, you seem to be about a year too late. You're ranting about WinCE and WinMo upto and including 6.5. This is the bit that throws me:

"Microsoft need to sack the senior management in the mobile division and hire new talent that can actually bring a mobile platform to market that people actually want to use. Only then will it filter down to business users."

Have you actually seen WinPhone 7? The whole point was that they have fired all the old people, brought in new people, and produced something completely new. They already did that, the new talent has been bevering away for months and we're now starting to see what they've produced. Are you seriously advocating that they should now fire this lot as well and bring in some even newer talent?

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WM6.5 and 6.6 will stay the primary focus for businesses until the next build of SCMDM ships with WP7 support and things like an IRM client are released for it.

The fact that WP7 isn't 100% corporate ready at launch doesn't mean that all companies running WM handsets have to toss them out and buy Blackberries, it just means that they shouldn't make the jump to WP7 on day one. Think of it as a staggered release instead:

Late 2010 - release WP7 for consumers and small-mid sized businesses who don't use IRM, SCMDM or deploy custom apps

Early-mid 2010 - WP7 launched with support tools for large business/corporate.

I honestly think it's a sensible enough path for Microsoft to take. Consumers and small businesses are early adopters, so you get the 1.0 release of your product ready for them. Corporates are always going to hold off for at least six months, so that gives you some lead time to build the supporting products and large-scale management tools that those corporates will need.

Consumer Reports: 'We were wrong about the iPhone 4'


Bill Gates? No he didn't.

Actually all available records suggest that Bill Gates *didn't* say that.


If you've got an actual source for Bill Gates saying that, I'd love to see it.

(A proper citation, date, time, location, who he was speaking to, etc, not just "I read somewhere that Bill Gates said")

Googlegate: Mapping a scandal of global proportions



Actually, L1feless is right and you're the n00b Adam. If you sniff a packet on a WiFi LAN before it hits the router, you'll get the local LAN IP address in the header. The WAN IP doesn't get inserted until it's NAT'd by the router, by which time it's on the wire and off the airwaves.

The data Google collected would only contain your internal IP.

Color ebook reader for 200 clams? Yup



"Also, the Novel can switch between portrait and landscape mode, a trick of which neither the Kindle nor the Nook are capable."

Actually the Kindle can switch to landscape.


Came in with an over-the-air software update about six months ago.

Biz Linux needs Office license to run MS web apps



"But Volume license (which is an upgrade license on top of an existing lic)"

No, it's not. You're thinking of Windows licenses. Microsoft make a lot of products, and strangely enough, the licenses aren't all exactly the same.

You don't need to buy anything else before you buy an Office volume license. It's a full, complete license in its own right, just like a retail/FPP license. Optionally, you can buy SA (a support agreement with new version rights) on to of your VLP, but you don't have to if you don't want to.


Of couse, OpenOffice

Fully featured and runs brilliantly in a web browser, doesn't it? Which is what we're talking about here, right? Office products in web browsers? You know, like the one in the article you commented on?


Not a Goole Apps replacement

Lots of comments seem to be missing the fact that this isn't a cloud based, ad supported service aimed at individuals. The corporate version of Office Web Apps (the one that's only free if you have an Office license on that machine) is something companies install on top of a SharePoint DMS. It's designed to allow web browser editing of files that live the company file server, where the company can control them, back them up, lock them down, etc. It's a value add for corporates who already license Windows, SharePoint and Office and want editing in browsers as well. I challenge you to find me one company running Linux desktops that also runs Windows servers and Microsoft SharePoint =)

Decent sized orgs don't keep all their company files in the chocolate factory cloud - they usually have confidentiality agreements, client contract obligations and other legal reasons that files are kept in house. No-one with more than a handful of PCs is going to use Google as their mail file repository, so how is Google Docs a competitor to this product?

Yes, down at the individual consumer end they compete, and if you ran Linux on your deskto and didn't own office then of course you'd use OpenOffice and Google Docs. For home users on Windows PCs that shipped with OEM copies of Office, or who get cheap Office licenses thru work or school, Office Web Apps with hosting in the cloud is free, so they might use that. For corporate types who want all their files living where they can see them, using Google Anything is not a sensible option. OpenOffice is a good option for a desktop client on a Linux PC, but if a corporate with Linux PCs actually wants edit-in-a-browser functionality, what else is there at this point in time?


Kind of makes sense

If you're running a terminal server with Office installed and you have 100 Linux desktops using RDP or Citrix to connect to the server daily to use Office apps, you need 100 licenses of Office rather than one.

Licensing for in-house Office web apps just seems to be following the same basic concept - you're licensing the end device that the user sits at, not the back-end server actually running the app. If it wasn't licensed that way world+dog would be running Office and Adobe Premier on terminal servers just to avoid the cost of licensing it.

Microsoft rejigs enterprise end point security management


I think you're right.

Based on what I read in a subsequent blog post (http://blogs.technet.com/forefront/archive/2010/04/21/converging-endpoint-security-and-management-it-just-makes-sense.aspx) it sounds like they're just killing Forefront Protection Manager (FPM).

FPM was supposed to be a central management point for all your Forefront products, so you could monitor definition updates and set policies across Forefront on PCs, Exchange, Sharepoint, OCS, etc all from the one console. The blog post that started this article *seems* to be saying that the individual products (including FEP for desktop protection) will continue, but they'll just be managed by a module in SCCM. That's not what the Reg article is saying, but it's what I understand to be the case from the blog posts.

It makes a certain amount of sense too - you don't want to have too many management consoles for your IT staff to flick between. I'm just hoping there's a cut-down version that talks to SCE. We're a small shop and SCCM is too big for us to use day to day, but I don't want to be running SCCM for FPE as well as SCE for all our other management.

Microsoft slams nails in Windows Vista, XP SP2, 2000


Still around for a while yet

Actually, Vista SP1 and SP2 are still supported and in reasonably wide use.

Anyone still running Vista without a service pack deserves everything they get.


Win7 pretty much fine for gaming.

I spent most of the weekend playing Civ 4 on my Win7 machine. Worked just fine.

I didn't even have to do anything to get it working, just fired up Steam, installed it and played it.

I don't know what you're doing wrong, but the last game I couldn't get working in Win7 was one of the Quest For Glory games. Hell, my g/f is even playing Starcraft 1 on one of my Win7 boxes and that's ancient.

Plantronics Voyager Pro UC


Desk phone integration has been around for ages!

Integrating with a desk phone (one that's capable of taking a headset) isn't a hard concept, or even a new one. I'm really not sure why you think it's not available.

Just looking at what Plantronics offer, check out the Voyager 510S Bluetooth Headset System and the Savi Office range. Pretty much every major headset manufacturer makes a bluetooth version of one of their cordless headsets that can also be paired with a mobile phone.

If you're looking for something else then maybe you should clarify what you actually need, because at the moment you seem to be swearing about the lack of something that *already exists*.


Why? Because serious people use them.

These things (the UC variants that ship with USB dongles) are geared at business travellers who use UC products regularly. They're not aimed at you. The fact that you don't like BT headsets in general is irrelevant.

We've got a number of heavy UC users (Microsoft OCS) who carry netbooks and ultraportables when they travel. Our stock headset for use in the office is a corded USB plantronics, but they're way too big and bulky for travel. Some of our guys use standard BT headsets, but there are all sorts of hassles with voice quality and pairing. Other guys carry analog earbud headsets and plug in to the onboard headphone/mic ports on the laptop, but again the audio quality (particularly the Mic) is often iffy. We also have a number of Polycom C100's, but a speakerphone isn't always appropriate.

The idea with products like the one reviewed is that they're small, portable, give great audio quality, don't tie you to your laptop, and present to the O/S as a standard USB audio device. There's no stuffing about with the O/S BT stack to get things paired, and no worries about the particular laptop having good/shitty BT signal (looking at you, Dell XPS M1330). It's supposed to be something that's easy to carry and just works, really well. If it can be paired with your mobile, that's good too. Sometimes it's important to be able to type two handed while on the phone, without using shoddy built-in speakerphones. Most importantly tho, it's a high quality headset for your UC app that you an carry around with you.

We, as professional IT people, need to be able to provide these sorts of things to staff, so I'm actually glad that The Reg took the time to review it.

Dell XPS support takes a catnap

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@people suggesting Apple or Sony

Apple and Sony both do Return To Base warranties, with turn-around times measured in weeks. The Reg reader referred to in this article had to wait an extra business day, so he got his machine fixed in 2 business days, not the one business day that the warranty promised.

I agree that it sucks that Dell dropped the ball on this one, and that the customer didn't get what he was promised. That's bad. That said, even when Dell screwed up so badly that there's an article in The Register about it, he still got his computer fixed in 2 business days. Not the two weeks it took me last time I tried to get an Apple fixed under AppleCare - an AppleCare protection plan that cost significantly more than the 2nd and 3rd year warranty extension on a comparable XPS.

So that's what I don't get. How does it make sense to tell someone that instead of their crappy XPS with it's crappy Dell support he should have instead purchased something else that *still wouldn't be fixed today* if the same thing had gone wrong with it? Why would that be a good thing?

Teen kidnapped over Sony PSP


So which is it?

"Utah police say the boy on Saturday was forced into the car of 21-year-old Jose Espinosa-Arellano"


"During negations Espinosa-Arellano allegedly suggested they to go for a ride and the victim - apparently thinking he was in a video game himself - didn't have a major problem with this. But when it became apparent the car was headed into Salt Lake City, the victim became nervous and demanded to be let out."

Was the victim forced into the car, or did he agree to get in voluntarily, and then sometime later get nervous and demand to be let out?