* Posts by Andrew Downes

11 posts • joined 16 May 2007

Facebook Android app caught seeking 'superuser' clearance

Andrew Downes

Sorry, but it's a very poor sensationalist article

I wouldn't normally defend Facebook and I don't run the app.

BUT "superuser" is a feature *only* on rooted android phones. Facebook pointed this out in their response, why couldn't el reg?

Could the user just decline the permission? There's no claim that the app stopped working if the user did?

If you root your phone you're taking bigger risks than your Facebook data. You should understand what you're doing (obviously some don't). You changed a fundamental feature of the OS and voided any warranty. Why expect app developers to test on rooted devices anyway?

You don't even need root to install a modded OS like lineage, just an unlocked bootloader.

Oh Sony. Have we learned NOTHING from SuperAIT?

Andrew Downes

Remember that patents are very lucrative, so if Sony are using it as a means to create IP that they can license, this *might not* be as bonkers as it sounds.

However Sony's track record of wastefulness and massively loss-making ventures points elsewhere, I agree.

Spinning rust woes: NetApp bumps along bottom while EMC soars

Andrew Downes

Or is IBM selling less N series (OEM FAS)?

Since this is factory shipments, I suspect the IBM number wouldn't include their shipments of N series but this would be on the NetApp number instead. So if IBM had significantly moved sales, it could account for some or most of the NetApp decline and some or most of the IBM gain. I write as a recent ex-IBMer but with zero insider knowledge of the numbers.

Sacks of cash chucked at upstart dressed to the nines

Andrew Downes

10 nines?

Sheer marketing rubbish - turned on its head that means a given object will be unavailable for a third of a second in every hundred years? Simply impossible to prove, and 99.99999999% unlikely to happen. I don't expect el Reg to be repeating this guff without at least poking fun...

NAS door gives drag-n-drop access to linear tape vault

Andrew Downes

Or you could investigate a tried and trusted solution...

IBM Tivoli Storage Manager for Space Management does the hierarchical storage bit (which is what integrated disk and tape means).

It also integrates backup which is somewhat important - copies of the tapes in the library, copies to take off site, even a fully automatic duplicate archive at a second site if you need it. Try doing that with file-by-file backup.

It has a worldwide client base including Soho post-production houses going back many years. Enterprise scale and reliability. Teamed with V7000 Unified can offer multi-tiers of disk (high performance 15k RAID10 to near line 7.2k SAS).

But fundamentally the software is disk independent and supports a massive range of tape libraries, does not depend on LTFS support.

Full disclosure: I work for IBM and get a little frustrated when I hear clients spending more than they need to to on "new" function that has been in production for years if they just asked (in this case) the global leader in tape technology. Doesn't have to cost a lot, try us.

Blu-ray Players

Andrew Downes

Thanks for including PS3, but...

Thanks for including the PS3 - it's good to see a view of how it stacks up against the latest players.

However I agree with all rich_a's points, and would add one of my own - the PS3 has been on the market since March 2007 (in Europe) yet is still capable of playing the most up-to-date BD discs thanks to an easy updating mechanism - over wireless internet as well as memory key.

I would recommend the PS3 to any non-gamer, because it excels as a media centre, with the BBC iPlayer, PlayTV, DLNA media server streaming, web browser (incl. YouTube), plus all the future features that are bound to come along. It also supports bluetooth keyboards and mice. Wish it had Skype... there's one that Sony really ought to get around to and might one day.

I'd also love to see some comment on picture quality of all the players - you imply it's much of a muchness?

Apple releases Java patches (finally)

Andrew Downes

No update for 10.5.6!

10.5.7 was a big download and I hadn't got around to it yet. Shocked to find the fix wasn't offered at 10.5.6 so needless to say I have now done both.

I'd echo Muscleguy's comment that if there's no exploit then the tone of your article was scaremongering. But better safe than sorry.

Dell to stuff hypervisors in flash memory

Andrew Downes


Could you please avoid using the word "free" when talking about software - we all know it has a cost. Plus the potential confusion with "free" as in "open". In fact, software is merely "included" in something else that the punter has bought (or sold) - whether that's a piece of hardware or their time in looking at advertising - to wit, GMail.

Oh, and you missed the fact that IBM's POWER hypervisor has been "included" since the early noughties and the mainframe hypervisor since the mid-sixties.

IBM's beefy Power6 boxes slaughter Java

Andrew Downes

Who mentioned Oracle?

This is an article about JAVA benchmarks. Last I looked, Oracle give their java app server away at no extra cost when you pay for the rest of their apps (usually per seat) and that licensing calc only applies to the database. What makes anyone think the performance argument is the same for Oracle database, which scales in an entirely different way?

C of E blasts 'sacrilegious' Sony shoot-'em-up

Andrew Downes

History lesson needed

Given the bloodthirsty nature of religion I wonder how many REAL murders have taken place in cathedrals over the years (Thomas Becket onwards), not to mention fictional murders in printed word form that didn't raise a single column-inch of publicity?

What's funny is that the journalist who spotted this angle clearly did such a good job - presumably extracting rent-a-quote from "outraged reverend, 53, Manchester" with no more than that YouTube clip. What a weird world we live in.

PlusNet shuts down webmail indefinitely

Andrew Downes

One gaffe too far for me I fear

Thanks for the heads-up on all the cockups at PlusNet. I've been with them for 3 years or more, and until this year they filled the niche I needed them to; a full-function ISP for the tech-savvy punter. However, in 2007 I've been affected by all the following:

1. Constant unavailability of email, even after the supposed NetApp upgrade;

2. Appalling performance of CGI server;

3. Now, my wife and daughter's email accounts (previously spam free) both inundated. Interestingly, so is an email account I deleted some time ago (I still get the emails to my main account under a catch-all setting). Fortunately, I use Bigfoot forwarding and those addresses are unaffected - so PlusNet does actually give me the tools to recover, I simply set up new mail accounts and change the forward, plus turning off the catch-all feature.

Anyone from PlusNet reading this will have noticed that I had no email-induced loyalty anyway - my ISP will be switched shortly, anyone got a recommendation?


Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2022