* Posts by Allan 1

110 publicly visible posts • joined 8 Oct 2009


US government clears debt collectors to go after Americans through their social media accounts

Allan 1

I dispute this statement that debt collectors are good people.

I had a collections agency pursue me for over 3 years over a debt that wasn't mine. It started off with a telephone call asking for a name who has never lived here (I've lived here for 40+ years), then they asked my name "for our records to show who we spoke to", that sounded reasonable, so I gave it.

All of a sudden they were pursuing the same debt, but with my name instead. It took a year of lawyers letters being exchanged before they admitted they were pursuing the wrong person, and dropped it.

British Army develops AI shotgun drone with machine vision for indoor use

Allan 1

Well, I learned from watching a certain youtube channels based on demolition and ranches, that combat shotguns normally shoot solid slugs, not shot.

NUC NUC. Who's there? It's Intel, with a pint-sized 8-core Xeon workstation

Allan 1

Re: Have some Mint instead!

Apparently LTT did an in depth review of this model NUC, and specifically looked into the thermals, and in their opinion, they have done a really excellent job of managing thermals and dispersing the excess heat.

Don't use natwest.co.uk for online banking, Natwest bank tells baffled customer

Allan 1

Re: 2FA

Halifax Bank are taking the exact same approach. No cellphone? No online banking for you!

At least, that was the case until I sent them a nastygram citing the disability discrimination act (I'm deaf so can't use phones, therefore don't have a phone, of any kind). I then got sent a document to sign absolving them of any liability should my account be hacked as a result of not having a cellphone to send an SMS code to.

Personally, I feel it to be safer anyway, with the rise in SIM swap fraud.

Labour: Free British broadband for country if we win general election

Allan 1

Re: @steelpillow and ImAlrightJack

Not only that, my parents actually had to attend a face to face interview with the GPO in what is now known as DIAL House in Manchester, and actually JUSTIFY to a GPO worker, why they needed a telephone.

People of Britain: You know that you're not locked into using the same ISP forever, right?

Allan 1

Re: Sometimes it's the customers fault

Not anymore. Since being taken over by liberty global, they can no longer negotiate on the price.

I recently phoned to see if I could get a better price for my 100mbps/tv (which has never worked and they don't wanna fix it)/phone line, which currently costs just shy of £60 a month after this years price rises.

I was told that they can no longer negotiate a new price, that ability has been removed from them. When I asked about removing the tv package as its never worked, I was told it'd break the package bundle I am on, and would end up actually costing me more. So I complained about the tv package never working, they just transferred me to technical support in india, whom I could no longer understand, and gave up.

Carphone Warehouse fined £29m for mis-selling mobile insurance to punters who didn't need it

Allan 1

TescoMobile are just as bad. 2 years ago I got a new Samsung S7, told the guy repeatedly that I did not want their insurance as iI had full gadget cover through my bank. He kept on and on and on. When I finally got home, and went through the paperwork... He had signed me up to their insurance anyway, forcing me to battle customer relations to cancel it (they really didn't want to cancel it).

Found yet another plastic nostalgia knock-off under the tree? You, sir, need an emulator

Allan 1

Re: F/A 18 Interceptor

I have a distant memory, that as a child my father took me to a block of offices just behind Central Library, Manchester, that were full of computers of all kinds. I learned later that this had been the first headquarters of Ocean Software (now defunct). Oh how I wish I could remember that visit more clearly.

Samsung: Swanky hardware alone won't save a phone maker

Allan 1

Samsung bait and switch

I had a S7 Edge that I was really happy with. Then recently they changed their contracts, and my phone started popping up a notification that I had to sign in to my Samsung account and digitally accept the new contract, to continue using my phone. I did NOT agree to some of the terms in the new contract. So I declined to "accept" it. Queue my phone popping that notification over the top of everything, every 60 minutes. Prompting me that I had not yet accepted the new contract.

Contacted Samsung, only to be told that there was no way past it, I had to accept the new contract. For a phone I owned and paid for outright. So would they buy the phone back at the same price I purchased it for? No.

Im with a Huawei P20 Pro now. Samsung has turned into a fetid steaming mess.

TV Licensing admits: We directed 25,000 people to send their bank details in the clear

Allan 1

Re: Imprisonment would be fair, I think

I have a TV, linked to an old PC running Linux and Kodi. As it was a gift, its "tuned" to digital TV, but its not connected to any external aerial of any kind. TV Inspector told me that because its "tuned" and there is an aerial available for it even though its not connected, I need a licence. The only way I wouldn't need a licence is if I was to "de-tune" it, and pull the aerial and all cabling for it down and that he was going to refer me to court.

Still waiting to hear my court date, 3 years on.

Open justice FTW! El Reg fought the law – and El Reg won

Allan 1

Re: Streisand effect in 3..2...1...

Their retail desk is closed except for saturdays, for essential renovations. Or was a week or two ago when I needed a new SDD. Their mail order business is open as normal.

Maplin shutdown sale prices still HIGHER than rivals

Allan 1

As an amature photographer, I would rather deal with Jessops, or LCE, who have bricks and mortar outlets, than take a risk buying a £2000 camera from Amazon, and having the delivery scally steal it. Plus if you keep an eye on Jessops sales, you can quite often get good kit, very cheaply.

Facebook told to stop stalking Belgians or face fines of €250k – a day

Allan 1

Re: Opt Out?

I believe that European law specifically states quite clearly, that a contract cannot and will not revoke your legal protections, and that if a contract tries, the entire contract is void.

Virgin Media skulks in disused public toilets

Allan 1

We already know about it, and have for a while. They beefed up security a fair bit.

Help desk declared code PEBCAK and therefore refused to help!

Allan 1

Or maybe the user was just tired of being passed from desk to desk.

Outage at EE wrecks voice calls across the UK

Allan 1

Doesn't appear limited to EE. Been unable to make or recieve voice calls all day, and I'm with TescoMobile who is an O2 based VMNO

Google to kill Chrome autoplay madness

Allan 1

Stay away from the DailyMail/MailonSunday sites then. Every story has a video player, that not only autoplays, but slides out, and slides off to the side, and won't let you kill it until its played 30 seconds of commercials.

Thanfully I found a very simple uBlock Origins filter sniplet, that kills the flyout mechanism for it.

Nest cracks out cheaper spin of its thermostat

Allan 1

Re: Still not happening

Can be done even cheaper, with a Chinese copy known as an Orange Pi. I made mine for under £20.

Virgin Media to close flagship Oxford St store in August

Allan 1

They want everyone on Shub3 to reduce support scope, and hence, reduce support costs. They will try and charge you for the upgrade, but if you keep refusing, they will offer it for free.

Currys PC World given a spanking for misleading laptop savings ads

Allan 1

Sorry, but I've bought a couple of high end laptops from PC World, and are quite satisified with the spec and the price. Not happy with the way they really push hard to get you to buy McAffee, Microsoft Office, Knowhow Cloud, and Knowhow Setup though. A polite "No thank you" is not enough. You need multiple "No thank you. I said no. I am sorry but what use is mcrosoft office to me when I use libre office? NO!"

UK privacy watchdog sends poison pen letter to Zuckerberg et al

Allan 1

Re: Delete your account

Most people THINK they have deleted their accounts, when all they have actually done is deactivated it.

You should install smart meters even if they're dumb, says flack

Allan 1

The ONLY people who will benefit from these meters in the long run, are the power companies. Time based pricing organized to cost the most when you use the most, no need for meter readers, etc.

League of lawsuits: Game developer sues cheat-toting website

Allan 1

Re: Devops

"Even my Logitech keyboard supports macros. Is that a cheat too ?" - Using the logic Blizzard apply to world of warcraft, yes. If a keyboard can execute more than one commend per keypress, then yes, its a bot , and its a hack, and its bannable.

Beleaguered 123-reg customers spot price hike

Allan 1

Got to be fair

Ive used 123 for a long time now, and while their fees are creeping up, there does seem to be fewer "hidden" costs than there were with the old management. They used to charge to transfer your domain out, the new management abolished that.

Their customer service, while a little on the slow side, is remarkably knwledgeable too.

Apps that 'listen in' to your mobile get slapped by US watchdog

Allan 1

Re: I don't get it

Maybe by knowing the sequence the adverts are playing, and the time, they can figure out what show you were watching, and hence, your interests?

Photographer hassled by Port of Tyne for filming a sign on a wall

Allan 1

Re: Training required and Twitter suspensions

It is important to realize that not all pavements are public property. Some can actually be the property of nearby businesses. As a bunch of photographers found out when they were arrested for photographing the Shard in London. Turns out that The Shard also owns the "public" pavement outside.

Confirmed: How to stop Windows 10 forcing itself onto PCs – your essential guide

Allan 1

I actually let Windows 10 install, then found 90% of my games (admittedly old ones) simply refused to work. So I wiped and reinstalled Windows 7, did the whole windows update thing, then went to bed. Woke up the following morning to find Windows Update about to reinstall Windows 10. So glad I woke up when I did.

Installed GWXControlPanel almost immediately after that. Just checked, and it appears GWXControlPanel makes all the necessary adjustments to registry for me.

Bah humbug. It's Andrew's Phones of the Year

Allan 1

Re: Security Updates

Sony phones are great, but their screens seem unusually fragile. I have a friend with a Z3, who dropped it less than 2 inches onto a carpeted floor, and the screen literally exploded into fragments. Other than that minor inconvenience, they are great phones.

TalkTalk CEO admits security fail, says hacker emailed ransom demand

Allan 1

It's my understanding that they are legally required to retain ex-customer details for a number of years after that customer leaves, in case the authorities need to investigate fraud / crime.

Botched Google Stagefright fix won't be resolved until September

Allan 1

Unfortunately, installing cyanogenmod will completely invalidate my Samsung warranty on my S6

Power Bar: EE was warned of safety risk BEFORE user was burned in explosion

Allan 1

How do I swap out a spare battery in my Galaxy S6 Edge? It's a completely sealed unit.

Panda antivirus labels itself as malware, then borks EVERYTHING

Allan 1

There will be many sad panda's today.

Crap employers banned from enforcing backdoor crim records checks

Allan 1

Re: Checks for people running activities in community hall

Essentially, yes. The onus is now on you to make an official CRB check request directly with the police yourself, and pay for it, yourself. You can no longer place the onus on the other person.

'Fry-OS 8' iPhone BLEW UP MY PANTS wails roasted Johnson

Allan 1

Re: Shock news!

Apple and defenestration... I don't think Apple uses windows.

Capita lands spot on mega £5bn NHS commissioning deal

Allan 1

Capita, as in the same people who are TV Licensing Thugs^H^H^H^H^HEnforcers?

Oh dear gods no.

Robot vacuum cleaner EATS WOMAN

Allan 1

I, for one, welcome our robot vacuum overlords.

Outage STILL hitting Virgin Media Business broadband customers

Allan 1

Re: Time to fix.

VirginMedia sadly don't give you a choice. They forcefully push out the firmware updates, and you cannot opt out of them.

Facebook: Over half a BEELLION loyalists have SPURNED our Messenger app

Allan 1

I have Facebook Messenger and Facebook on my cellphone only because they were pre-installed, and I am too lazy to dig out the instructions on how to remove them from a rooted phone (mine is rooted), I just don't use them.

I did use whatsapp, until facebook bought it, at which point I deleted both my account and the app.

"You don't trust facebook then?" "Nope, not one little bit."

Win a year’s supply of chocolate (no tech knowledge required)

Allan 1

Re: Just under the clickey button...

Also excludes self employed, disabled and unemployed people from entering:

Required* Your Organization.

I'll get my chocolate from Tesco.

FBI boss: We don't want a backdoor, we want the front door to phones

Allan 1

Re: Look and say AAAHHH!

'Burner passwords' would probably leave you open to a charge of wilful destruction of evidence, sadly.

Heavy VPN users are probably pirates, says BBC

Allan 1

Re: In other words, Auntie doesn't like Aussies

" iPlayer downloads can only be played in the place they were downloaded to, and are time limited."


get_iplayer FTW

Six of the best gaming keyboard and mouse combos

Allan 1

Re: I call shenanigans

Indeed. I had multiple Logitech gaming mice over the years and one gaming keyboard.

All the mice failed in exactly the same way, an internal break in the USB cable, probably because they are shipped with the cable folded up so tightly in the packaging that the cable's already damaged before you get to even use it. Assumably to make the packaging smaller.

The keyboard, just stopped responding one day. I swapped to Roccat products and not had any issues since.

Brits' borked Samsung kit held up after repair centre slips into administration

Allan 1

Re: Retrieval

Not 100% sure here, but isn't it the case that when a company goes bankrupt, any equipment in their possession becomes the property of the administrators, even if the bankrupt company wasn't the owner of the property to begin with. Possession being 9/10ths of the law and all that.

I remember when a large photographic chain went kaput, people who had placed orders and paid for equipment, lost out heavily. The administrators took both the money and auctioned the equipment to pay the creditors.

If the case is similar here, I fear for people trying to recover their equipment that was in for repair.

Major problems beset UK ISP filth filters: But it's OK, nobody uses them

Allan 1

Re: Opt Out more likely

Thanks for the heads-up. I logged in to my vm account on a hunch after reading your post, to find they had kindly activated this rubbish for me too, without even having the manners to tell me. I went to settings and got greeted by:

"Because its your first time here, we have activated all settings for you, to protect..."

There was a radio button control to turn it off but no save settings button. When clicked on to change it to "Turn Off", I got greeted by a nice red dialog warning of death, doom and destruction, obviously designed to frighten those whom are less technologically literate.

It had better stay turned off. I'll be checking it periodically. While I don't do porn, I want it off because it should be my choice, not theirs.

Virgin Media struck dumb by NATIONWIDE DNS outage

Allan 1

Re: Cheltenham again?

Yeah, I'm not buying the "failure" excuse either. Happened too soon after BT had an identical "failure".

Still watching DVDs? You're a planet-killing carbon hog!

Allan 1

All well and fine, but...

Every streaming service I've tried do NOT provide subtitling for the feature, and some have no intetion to ever provide subtitling, hiding behind clauses such as "the licence holder prevents.."

I am deaf. I need subtitling on my movies. DVD's provide that. Streaming doesn't.

I'll stick with DVD's.

ICO raps UK Student Loans Co for leaking MEDICAL files and more

Allan 1

Re: The article keeps changing

Once published, the article should be static except for spelling corrections ofc. Error correction should be via a strikethrough, so any comments made don't suddenly look weird as the part they were commenting about is suddenly missing.

Its not print, but it is press.

Tesco to tout its own smartphone – now THAT'S an unexpected item in the bagging area

Allan 1

Oh god No!

I'm with Tesco Mobile at the moment, only because they gave me a good deal on a Galaxy S3. I thought at the time, "OK, so they use the O2 network, it can't be that bad."

I was right, its not that bad. Its worse. I can barely get a signal at home, in fact anywhere thats not "city centre" has an atrocious signal, and I have just over a year of a two year contract left.

If they want to make a success of their own phone, they need to use a better carrier network imo.

Google kills copycat TfL congestion charge payment ads

Allan 1
Thumb Up


I nearly fell for one of the EHIC scam sites, and paid the £25 for an EHIC last year.

If it wasn't for a Dutch friend telling me that the NHS EHIC's are actually free. Knowing they were free, I eventually found the proper EHIC application site via NHS Direct of all places.

So yeah, Google need to deindex the fake EHIC sites also.

To fel with you! There's an NSA spook in my World of Warcraft

Allan 1

"Hey guv, its scary. We need to close down WoW urgently. Its a hotbed of therroristht activthy. EVERYONE talks abbout 'nuking the boss' continually!!!"