* Posts by Sid_the_Kid

25 publicly visible posts • joined 23 Oct 2009

Samsung’s DeX dock clicks the second time around


You don't need the official DeX dock; I've got a cheapy version which is just a dongle on a USB-C flying lead.

Happily it's multi-use; it spends most of its day plugged into my work laptop where it works quite handily, with a USB dock affair connected to it, as the single connection to my monitor, keyboard, mouse and network. If I want to browse my personal emails and suchlike I can just unplug it, plug my phone in (S8) and hey presto.

No Windows 10, no Office 2019, says Microsoft


Re: Cold Dead Hand

From my personal perspective as someone who's recently started work somewhere using 32-bit Office 2010, I am praying for the day that an upgrade gets pushed my way. My biggest issue is that I spend much of my time being a spreadsheet jockey and it's such a bloody faff to have all of the open documents in the same window. Yes, I know you can launch separate instances of the Excel but the instances don't talk to each other nicely.

There are other small but significant improvements in the functionality besides that so I was very happy to find a way to get a Citrix delivered version of Excel 2016 which is 64-bit, sits on a server with a bit more oomph and RAM than my laptop and enables me to do things which would otherwise be possible but harder and significantly slower.

GE goes with Apple: Not the Transformation you were looking for, Satya?


Office for Mac?

It’s not great, and prone to crapping out regularly. It is mostly compatible with the Windows versions now at least - documents and presentations look near enough identical in either which wasn’t the case in 2008 and 2011 - and VBA has been there in the last couple of versions but it is slower doing pretty much everything and the easy integration across Office apps allowing you to write a script which, for example, dumps a bunch of data into a new file and attaches that to a new email in Outlook is absent.

I remember doing a test with a short iterative script which took 2-3 seconds to execute in Excel on Windows and about 30 in the Mac version

BOFH: Thermo-electric funeral


Re: as if owning IT antiquity was one of those positive character traits

Somewhere in my bits and bobs collection, I've got one of these:


I won it in a competition back when they came out and it was *amazing* at the time - but I am easily pleased... ;-)

Apple iPhone 6S: Same phone, another day, but TOTALLY DIFFERENT


Re: Comment

There's no reason when you've got a portable generator (e.g. an alternator) with a power outlet (e.g. a fag lighter socket) typically right next to you, that you should ever run out of battery - as long as your charger is up to the job.

Get a decent charger and even with the GPS and every service under the sun running, you'll still easily finish the trip with 100% charge, even if it starts from empty.

Photoshop for 40 quid: Affinity Photo pushes pixels further than most


Re: Hello AC - Are you mainlining that Kool-Aid ?

Shock horror: I really have no particular bias towards Mac or Windows. I run the IT for a small company and hardware-wise, we're all Apple. Most use OS X but we've half a dozen or so folks who use Windows exclusively, mostly those of an accounting bent since there's no Sage on Mac and Mac Excel is a lumbering beast.

Myself, I dual boot between OS X and Windows but to be honest, since putting W10 on this machine, I've barely used OS X. I'll go there if I need to manipulate PDFs but W10 has plugged a lot of the gaps that used to keep me in OS X and so far has been rock-solid.

Scientists love MacBooks (true) – but what about you?


Don't remember which SP it came with but USB support did come to NT4, but it didn't support hot plugging as I recall. I (hazily) remember some specific devices with custom drivers you could plug in with the machine running and it'd work but most needed a reboot.

BOFH: Explain? All we need is this kay-sh with DDR3 Cortexiphan ...


Re: "Is there another internet?"

Don't forget Compuserve!

A gold MacBook with just ONE USB port? Apple, you're DRUNK


Re: 'NetBook' - exactly.

Just by way of a comment, I run a network of MacBook Pros. They're now mostly 5 years old, are all still solid, reliable and quick. The purchase price, IMO, is well justified based on my experiences in previous places using bog standard Wintel laptops which if they last that long, are all creaky and slow. I've run many OSs on mine (currently mostly use Windows for some VBA stuff I'm doing) and I've no reason to assume you can't put any OS you like on this new MacBook. Expensive, yes, but it'll probably last. Limited ports, yes, but in the office, a hub would fix that and out of it I don't use them. For me? Probably not but mostly because I don't need a new machine right now.

V. R. R. Stob's magnificent saga A Game Of Dog-and-Bones

Thumb Up

And what a joy to read another of V.R.R.Stob's marvellous missives. Made my day...thank you, Ms. Stob.

Why Apple had to craft a pocket-busting 5.5in Plus-sized iPhone 6 (thank LG, Samsung etc)


Re: NFC? . . . .

Since you can already use NFC phones in place of an Oyster, it would seem logical that low value transactions can occur without authentication. The fingerprint ID is no less secure than a signature which is all that is required in the US and arguably equal to a PIN.

Ballmer's emotional farewell to Redmond: I LOVE THIS COMPANY


Re: End to vertical lock-in?

Have you ever used Office for Mac? The current version has at least got a reasonable level of compatibility with Office for Windows but it is slow, crash prone and in my opinion, deliberately designed to persuade Mac users to use Windows on their Macs.

Example? I wrote a simple VBA macro to fill a table with some test data; I don't recall quite how many it did and can't find the file anywhere but it took Excel 2007 something like 2.5 seconds to complete. Excel 2011 took over 30 seconds to run the same script on the same machine.

Outlook 2013 is pretty pants though so perhaps one of the suite apps is superior on the Mac side...

Microsoft's Windows 8.1 secrets REVEALED ... sort of


Looks like...

...the nice folks at Stardock can relax.

They'll still be doing a roaring trade in copies of Start8 - and good on them. Takes W8 from being a jarringly clunky thing to a decent incremental upgrade from W7.

Security audit finds dev outsourced his job to China to goof off at work


Re: Is this a Verizon press release?

Just an aside: Verizon is in fact 49% owned by Vodafone, and they'd like to own more.

BOFH: Siri, why do users lie?


And this one...

...is very fine. Thoroughly enjoyed that and made my Friday doughnut break even more pleasurable than usual - if that is even possible.

Microsoft unveils Windows 8 'release preview' for June


I've been using it...

...on my #2 machine and it's fine. The whole Metro thing is a bit of a nonsense but as a launcher it works okay. I have got rid of all of the "shortcuts" to the Metro apps and just have useful stuff on there - every one of which opens in the desktop environment. Other than that it is basically Windows 7 with a modded UI so if I was to buy a new machine with it pre-installed, I'd keep it. Can't see me rushing out to buy it though.

My only gripe? Having to log and then go to the log in screen to shut down - something I've noticed an increasing number of the Linux distros I've come across recently seem to have. My main work machine is a Mac and that very rarely gets shut down but at least I can shut it down without logging out first.

Overall? I'm pretty much entirely neutral about W8 although I don't approve of change for change sake. A new UI with more-or-less identical functionality is pointless and W8 strikes me as that, as do most recent releases of Office, OS X and that godawful GNOME 3.

Austrian village considers a F**king name change


Re: Meet the Fuckers?

I'm proud to report that when a group of us called by in Pussy (French Alps) for photos, the town kept its sign.

Virgin Media's latest throttling rules


Re: A few things on this

1) RDP is relatively mild in terms of bandwidth use. Fear not.

2/3) Using modem mode and your own router works just fine. You can then do whatever you want with your traffic,

4) Agreed!

5) I'm aware of no blocking of services; I've used pretty much every OS under the sun at home at one time or another. Ethernet is ethernet...

They don't block anything. I have probably run pretty much everything at home from Windows, my usual OS X, various Linux flavours, BSD and even SCO UNIX

New patent will give iPhone screen interactive 3D



...the search screen does a great job of finding apps that are stashed away on the seventh screen of icons or in a folder. I support a fair few iPhones and it is by far the easiest way to fire up apps which aren't immediately obvious.

BOFH: The Cloud Committee Calamity

Big Brother

Welcome back!

Great way to make a potentially dull Friday liven up a little.

Now...how to deal with the chap who's complaining about the slow internet access...

MasterCard joins Visa in pushing PINs into America



...a number untrained checkout staff get snippy if they are handed a card without a chip.

I had this when I returned to the UK after a period living in the States. I had only got an old school mag-stripe card issued by my US bank and hadn't re-opened an account here and the number of retailers who refused to accept my card - without even *trying* to swipe - beggared belief.

And from my experience, a UK debit card with chip and pin doesn't work with the PIN in the US. Typically I've found you need to charge it as "Credit" and sign anyway. Add to that the fact that people are most definitely pushed towards using credit over debit anyway.

Either way, this move can only be a good thing for card security in the US and I applaud it.

BOFH: CSI Haxploitation Cube Farm Apocalypse


Oooh! Don't you just love...

...techie obfuscation?

I wish I could ad-lib it to that level. :-)

Excellent work, Mr. Travaglia

The X-Factor goes virtually mobile, expands voting



Wouldn't that be a really stupid product? Especially in Finland. That Tuote fella must be a bit tyhmä... ;-)

Nice one, El Reg!

Tux on account of him being my favourite Finn

Virgin Media network goes titsup in Brum


Over the last couple of months...

...I've had a good number of outages of both TV and web in SW Leicestershire. I was okay last night though, if maybe a tadge slower than usual. I had assumed I'd just been visiting slow sites - which of course may well have been the case. I don't use the phone (I use Vonage - so of course *that* goes out with the web connection) so I don't know if that had gone down at the same time as the other services have been failing.

The fun bit is if you phone the helpline, you'll get some nice Indian called Steve or Susan who tell you that they'll have to send an engineer to your house to confirm that there is a problem. Making a suggestion like "why don't you check to see if there are outages in the area" are typically met with a stunned silence, a "please hold" and a few minutes later confirmation that everything is down in your area but will be working again at "around 10:21am". Virgin are great! You've got to love 'em - and despite everything, the customer service is way better than in the days of NTL where an hour on hold was the norm if you wanted to talk to *anybody*.

Apple confirms Windows 7 support for Mac OS X boot camp


Not sure that this is news...

...since I've been running Win7 RC in bootcamp for quite some time. Runs very well, actually.

Just waiting for the folks at Apple to fix the dodgy audio driver for the CIrrus audio chipset in some of the more recent machines. Some bright spark apparently put a -15dB pad onto the speaker out which really ought to have been on the headphone out. You could drive PA speakers from the headphone socket but barely hear the internal speakers. Happily somebody has created a modded version you can download but I'd prefer a pukka driver...

Waiting eagerly for my RTM Win7 to arrive! :-)