* Posts by Neil Spellings

73 posts • joined 17 May 2007

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'Login infrastructure issue' blamed as sustained Xero outage threatens payrolls

Neil Spellings

Their status page says it's *not* a security incident and related to infrastructure

Citibank accidentally wired $500m back to lenders in user-interface super-gaffe – and judge says it can't be undone

Neil Spellings

You've clearly never worked in a large bank.

They will still be looking for the original application owner (who probably left 5 years ago) and who took over from them (left three years ago) to get the approvals in place to modify/retire the application (which nobody knows how it works) only that people far aware use it on a daily basis, so has to be kept running 24/7 on that fifteen year old server in the corner.

Azure thing at last: Windows Virtual Desktop takes to the cloudy stage

Neil Spellings

Re: Confused...

Other Cloud providers have to provide the "Windows experience" using Windows 2016 or 2019 server with Desktop Experience enabled, and RDS CALS. I'm amazed MS hasn't been pinged with an anti-trust lawsuit yet by restricting their Win10 licenses to their own cloud offering.

Customers baffled as Citrix forces password changes for document-slinging Sharefile outfit

Neil Spellings

Re: Don't believe that Citrix did not have a breach!

That email confirms what the blog post said..the credentials came from elsewhere, not from Citrix, so there was no breach of ShareFile itself.

Neil Spellings

More details now posted here:

https://www.citrix.com/blogs/2018/12/04/citrix-forces-password-reset-to-protect-against-credential-stuffing/

Credential stuffing attack. I'm still not a fan of scheduled enforced password changes, but it's better than nothing for users that don't have 2FA enabled and have their credentials exposed online.

Revealed: British Airways was in talks with IBM on outsourcing security just before hack

Neil Spellings

Re: What have the PCI folks ever done for Jo Public?

No, I've never been asked for this, although I always check-in online.

Neil Spellings

Re: What have the PCI folks ever done for Jo Public?

There are several, but I use Revolut app to create one-time-use Credit card numbers for online payments.

'World's favorite airline' favorite among hackers: British Airways site, app hacked for two weeks

Neil Spellings

Re: First large scale test of GDPR legislation perhaps?

Of course I fully expect the end result to be no fine and GDPR shown to be a damp squid. IAG will argue it took "reasonable steps" to protect customers data blah blah and will walk away with a slapped wrist and offering free credit file monitoring for affected customers.

Neil Spellings

Get a Revelut account..they offer one-time-use disposable credit card numbers.

Neil Spellings

First large scale test of GDPR legislation perhaps?

Heads up: Fujitsu tips its hand to reveal exascale Arm supercomputer processor – the A64FX

Neil Spellings

Re: ARM dreams of being in a laptop?

Shame the A4 never saw the light..I designed a very nice dual-mode Parallel port/floppy disc interface for it (long before USB came along plus Acorn insisted on propitiatory floppy drives, and the was no room for both ports on the case). Ahhhh those were the days....

Neil Spellings
Coat

Re: ARM dreams of being in a laptop?

Kind of cheating but....

http://www.cjemicros.co.uk/micros/products/lapi.shtml

Select few to watch World Cup in 4K high dynamic range colour on BBC iPlayer

Neil Spellings

Samsung aren't updating many TVs to support this

My £2000 4k HDR TV purchased only a year ago won't be able to play this as Samsung are refusing to update the OS to support HLG. Lots of similarly annoyed TV owners out there..

https://eu.community.samsung.com/t5/TV-Audio-Video/iPlayer-HLG-UHD-HDR-on-Samsung-s-J-and-K-Series-TVs/td-p/339023

Last attempt to find MH370 starts this week

Neil Spellings

Just plug their IMOs (9671632 and 9533244) into http://www.findship.co/ and voila..their exact location.

Equinix CEO bails after ‘poor judgment in employee matter’

Neil Spellings

"No, I really do have to replace this cable under your desk to fix a packet loss issue"

Driverless cars will lead to data-sharing – of the electrical kind

Neil Spellings

Home charging data already shared

When I had my home EV charger fitted, one of the "conditions" of the government subsidy reducing it's price to near-zero was that there was 3G reception so the charger could "phone home" its charging data. The fact this is being extended to public charging points is hardly a surprise really. It's valuable and useful data for the industry.

BA CEO blames messaging and networks for grounding

Neil Spellings

Yea because cloud providers never fail....

Sun sets on eight domain names managed by CentralNic

Neil Spellings

I received no notification from CentralNIC about this until I tried to renew a gb.com domain and it failed..

Core blimey! 10,000 per rack in startup's cloud-in-a-box

Neil Spellings

I'd hate to see the thermal footprint of 1000 cores in a single chassis.

It sounds a bit like HPE's Moonshot platform that already packs 45 x 8 or 16 core Intel XeonD's into a 4.5U chassis.

SpaceX spin-out plans to put virtual machines in orbit

Neil Spellings

Re: What's your vector, Victor?

The project is working with Citrix, who acquired Octoblu a few years ago, who's IoT mesh network was called Skynet

Just joining the dots...

Doctor Google stitches eyes, ears onto its cloudy learning monster

Neil Spellings

Imagine how much data they'll uncover on user behavior when they let this loose on their massive YouTube back catalogue..

At least it'll make YT searches more accurate, and not reliant on the meta-data entered by the uploader (staying positive..)

Smart meter firm EDMI asked UK for £7m to change a single component

Neil Spellings
Facepalm

Re: Sore misgivings

If criminals were that interested in how much electricity you were using it would be much easier just to steal your mail

WDC loads its belt-fed drive cannon, blasts out disks 'n' cards galore

Neil Spellings

Not "the highest performance per rack unit in the industry"

I can already beat their 9 million IOPS per U using a 4.3U HPE Moonshot chassis with 45 x cartridges each hosting 4 x 1Tb NMVE SSD drives..and this is using tech all available *today*

Smart Meter rollout delayed again. Cost us £11bn, eh?

Neil Spellings

Re: No tin hat here

"Yeah because paying by DD makes so much difference HAHAH!"

Makes a difference to me.

It means all my bills are paid ontime and thus no need to bariccade myself inside from the guy armed with bolt croppers coming to disconnect me.

Neil Spellings

No tin hat here

British Gas offered me a smart meter. Didn't cost anything (directly) so I went for it.

Now don't have an annoying guy with a lanyard appearing at the door each quarter.

Get daily utilisation stats instead of quarterly.

Daughter can visibly see the impact of leaving the front door open (on the gas/heating usage)

I pay my bill on time by DD so have no concern about getting cut off by someone in a control room in Swindon.

If someone fat-fingers a disconnection, I'll call up and report it like any other power outage.

Once domestic appliances can participate in load management, I know I'll be doing my bit to reduce the need for large coal power stations to provide the peak capacity buffers.

Really don't see what all the paranoia is about. Just my 2p...

VMware ponders VDI teleporting with swipe-between-devices patent

Neil Spellings

Just a coincedence then..

that a patent was filed by VMware shortly after Citrix demonstrated swiping a remote session from a tablet to meeting room PC at their annual Synergy conference in May 2015.

Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV: The new common-as-muck hybrid

Neil Spellings

Had one of these for several months and very happy with it.

As a consultant and LTD company owner, made perfect sense to buy one through the company to receive both 100% depreciation in year one (thus saving a ton of corporate tax), and the attractive 5% BIK running it as a private car.

Mostly used pottering around town and doing the school run, so can run for several days on a single overnight charge. The occasional longer journey is covered by the petrol engine and topping up the (currently free) ecoTricity motorway chargers.

As other have noted the interior isn't anything to write home about, but the seats are comfy, the ride high is good, tons of headroom and the rear seat legroom is insane. Boot space is great for cases, kids clutter etc.

Neil Spellings

Re: Buying one for the wrong reason.

You'd probably want to consider Petrol if you don't want to bugger up the PHEV engine ;)

Rodent rescue reckoned as remedy for cursor crisis cruelling BYOD

Neil Spellings

Re: I just hope it can work on non citrix reciever applications...

It doesn't - the mouse support is provided by the Receiver app as such it won't work with any other native apps. The lack of native IOS mouse support is the whole reason Citrix built this mouse and added the driver into Receiver.

VCE now competing with VMware

Neil Spellings

Virtual Netscalers are just fine

For the virtual desktop/VDI workloads, virtual NetScalers are just fine and scale very well to thousands of users. Their logic that you need physical devices is wrong and smacks of old-style disties trying to flog more tin.

VMware releases XenApp to Horizon porting tool

Neil Spellings

I'm confused. You start the article talking about a XenApp migration tool. Then go on about migrating users from VDI and how limited the VDI marketplace is.

XenApp and VDI are two difference things. Whilst I agree that VDI has a limited penetration in many large companies, XenApp is a different kettle of fish and is probably used in virtually every FTSE100 in some way or other (remote working, application delivery etc).

It's the XenApp not VDI customers that VMware are trying to poach. VMware used to be a VDI-only player but with their latest Horizon suite they want a slice of the lucrative application delivery/presentation market that Citrix has had to themselves for years.

Please don't make the mistake using XenApp and VDI interchangeably, they most certainly aren't the same.

Custom ringback tones: Coming to your next contract mobe?

Neil Spellings

Only fools...

I've only ever heard one of these once and it's a colleague who has the Only Fools and Horses theme tune play when you call him. Always wondered how he did it!

'Office Facebook' firm Tibbr wants you to PAY for mobe-meetings app

Neil Spellings

Competition

I'd say something like Podio (now owned by Citrix) is far more Facebook-like than Yammer.

How many VMs can you stuff in that box? How to get into the VDI biz

Neil Spellings
WTF?

Vendor c*ck wangling fest

Since when did ElReg become a platform for vendors to pimp their offerings and dis the competition?

I'm all for product reviews, but only if performed by independent experts, not sales monkeys from said vendors! (apologies to said sales monkeys...keep up the spin!)

Getting tired of this "mine is bigger than yours" BS on a supposed news site.

Silicon Roundabout £50m THING to spew 200 startups A YEAR

Neil Spellings
Go

Re: Sigh

Or Croydon even...

http://thecroydoncitizen.com/croydon-tech-city-2/

Red Hat stalks VMware in field sport ambush

Neil Spellings
Thumb Up

Good investment

It's actually a good investment as there are three big tech conferences in Barcelona this month: VMWorld this week, Citrix Synergy next week, and ITExpo the week after.

Nice move RedHat!

The Great Border Agency IT Crash: Just who was responsible?

Neil Spellings
FAIL

Olympics

Guess who's handling all the IT integration services for the Oympics....

http://uk.atos.net/en-uk/olympic_games/london2012/default.htm

MPs: Border Agency's own staff don't trust airport-scanner tech

Neil Spellings
Coat

Re: Garbage

I knew a guy who used to quote statistics about how urban legends start under the guise of "true facts"

London Mayor Boris grilled on Virgin's Underground penetration

Neil Spellings

I think it'll be useful

Not sure I agree with the "most of the time in a tunnel will make it useless" stance.

When services are running OK (yea, I know..) you actualy spend a fair bit of time in stations waiting for people to alight etc. Certainly enough time to refresh my emails, RSS and twitter feeds, and for those apps that do provide service running info to update their data.

Yea, if you're expecting to have a great interactive browsing session, or listen to Spotify, you'll be dissapointed, but the service isn't aimed at that.

As a Virgin Media customer, I'm quite pleased this'll be included in my "bundle" and will certainly improve my Smartphone experience whilst in and around London.

Microsoft accused of leaking RDP attack code

Neil Spellings
Mushroom

Internet facing doesnt matter

Whist there are plenty of internet-facing Windows servers out there (ever request a Windows VPS from one of the myriad of VPS hosting companies out there and you'll end up with a Windows server on the internet using RDP as the primary access method) the risk is much bigger than this.

If someone was to comprimise any internal or DMZ hosts (whatever the OS), this vulnerability leaves all your valuable Windows hosts (Exchange, SQL etc) open to also be pwned using the published RDP vulnerability without having to be internet facing.

When you consider your entire internal network as potentially hostile (as one should) then having such a vulnerability that can be remotely executed against a commonly-enable port/service is BAD NEWS.

Boffins out earbuds that sound right when inserted wrong

Neil Spellings
Holmes

Is there a right and wrong stereo?

Despite always checking that I have my L and R earbuds in the correct ears, does it really matter?

The only time it be apparent you had them in backwards would be watching movies where on-screen action is synced to the correct audio channel.

For the majority of music listening shirley either way round would work no?

Kids should be making software, not just using it - Gove

Neil Spellings

Word and Excel

Yea, pointless learning these as it's not like the majority of white collar workers use them for their daily jobs. Oh wait..

Satnav mishap misery cure promised at confab

Neil Spellings
FAIL

Map update rip-off

Having up-to-date maps available won't mean everyone uses them.

I asked our Honda dealer for an update DVD for the 2 year old built-in Navman GPS in my CRV but they wanted £349 for it. I did point out to them I could buy a completely new GPS system for less than that but they just did the "dealer shrugg" and I walked out empty handed.

Forecasting logon storms with desktop virtualisation

Neil Spellings

VDI

VDI rarely if ever saves money in the enterprise (SME's are a different matter, but this is in the Enterprise IT section)

I've you've been sold a VDI solution on some cost-saving premise, I'd cancel your PO immediately.

Neil Spellings
Thumb Up

Profiles

Fully with you on the profiles (although the articles focus was on storage and networking); it's an important aspect that shouldn't be overlooked when doing desktop virtualisation.

Different profile solutions (roaming, hybrid, streaming, mandatory etc) can also have a big impact on the VM storage I/O generated, and doing crazy things like redirecting AppData folders onto the network can kill many an application dead in its tracks performance-wise.

The BBC Micro turns 30

Neil Spellings
Thumb Up

BBC B got me into IT

It was my secondary school having a room-full of BBC B's that got me hooked on computers (and changed my eventual career path)

Not being able to afford a BBC at home, I opted for a C64, but learn both varients of BASIC.

My parents would leave me in the home computers isle in the supermarket whilst they did the weekly shopping, and return an hour later to see what I'd written. "Look mum I've written a database". So frustrating not being able to save it to tape and having to start over the next Saturday!

Having written my GCSE and then A'Level computer studies projects in BASIC on the Archimedes I eventually pursuaded my parents to combine several birthday and xmas presents to buy an A3000 for home.

After a short stint working for Acorn themselves in the 90's, it's nice to see the tech live on in the form of ARM that lies at the heart of practically every smartphone on the planet.

Demon Currys iPad showered kids with HARD-CORE smut

Neil Spellings
WTF?

Took a whole minute

She obvsiously didn't mind copping an eyefull if she was looking at it for a whole minute...surely once glance should of been sufficient to confirm the kind of content.

Why your tech CV sucks

Neil Spellings

Not true - people from some countries in the European Union (such as Romania) are not entitled to work in the UK without a visa.

Attention to detail, as the chap stated :)

We need to talk about desktop virt

Neil Spellings
Mushroom

Storage and network

Lots of comments but few people actually discussing the question being asked (a reminder: “How is desktop virtualisation likely to impact my existing network and storage infrastructure)

For larger enterprises, VDI is often the straw that breaks the camels back when it comes to storage infrastructure. Desktop workloads are vastly different to server workloads (e.g. logon storms) and many companies who have utilised existing storage that has quite happily being hosting their virtual servers find it now can no longer cope. This either requires expensive storage upgrades, or addition of some of the new IOPS "sink" technologies like Whiptail or Atlantis ILIO (still both expensive)

Another option is to utilise local storage and leave your expensive SAN/NAS for your virualised servers. Kaviza VDI-in-a-box (now Citrix VDI in a box) is a good candidate for this, as it uses commodity hardware, and just scales out using local storage as you need to add capacity.

Network-wise, the increased demand for storage bandwidth (if you aren't using local) may force you to investigate 10Gig ethernet. VDI is also 100% network dependant, so having reliable WAN and Internet links is paramount. There's no "offline working" scenario with hosted desktops, so multiple-resilient links are a must if you have business criticial offices connecting to centralised VDI infrastrucutre. And they don't come cheap.

Also, if you're delivered a "rich user experience" including videos on your VDI infrastrucutre over the WAN, then you might want to consider WAN acceleration and caching devices such as Riverbed or Citrix branch repeater.

How much you need to invest/upgrade will depend on the size of the organisation and the product sets you choose. It's a minefield, and can easily blow up in your face (hence the icon), so be careful out there.

Neil Spellings
WTF?

Whilst I agree that your server should be Gigabit networked, theres no reason why having 100mbit down to the end user device should impact performance. VDI protocols like RDP and ICA/HDX work all the way down to GPRS bandwidths, so 100mbit is more than ample for a virtual desktop.

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