* Posts by Tim 11

475 publicly visible posts • joined 4 Jan 2010


Nearly 20% of running Microsoft SQL Servers have passed end of support

Tim 11

"...inconsistent approach to backward compatibility"

SQL server is probably the one piece of MS software I have very few criticisms of, and I think they have done an excellent job in backwards compatibility. Even when they made massive changes to the engine in 7 and 2000, they still provided an easy upgrade path

compare this to windows where they regularly delete important features with no regard for users' needs

Fragile Agile development model is a symptom, not a source, of project failure

Tim 11

"My experience is that when allowed to figure it out for themselves, competent people will evolve a system that works quite well for their project. It won't be agile and it won't be waterfall"

As far as I can see, that is exactly Agile.

Lords of May-hem: Seven signs it is Oracle's year end

Tim 11

Re: Year end insanity

In my company we used to get big customers and prospects call us at end-of-year to proactively look for discounted deals. Our response - "actually our numbers for this year are a bit ahead of where we'd like them so if it's OK with you we'd rather slip this deal back a couple of weeks so it goes into the next financial year".

AWS customer faces staggering charges over S3 bucket misfire

Tim 11

Re: This is just one example

yes but for smaller customers there are probably more gains to be had. A number of my customers host web apps on azure for less than $15 per month, and they don't have to employ an admin to configure firewalls or do windows updates

Europe gives TikTok 24 hours to explain 'addictive and toxic' new app

Tim 11

Re: Is social media 'lite' as addictive and toxic as cigarettes 'light'?

This is all very true but I'm concerned by the fact that nowadays we seem to expect other people (even governments and large corporations) to take responsibility for our mental health.

Looking after your own mental health is not only possible; it's primarily your own responsibility and it's probably your biggest responsibility.

75% of enterprise coders will use AI helpers by 2028. We didn't say productively

Tim 11

Re: Maybe for writing tests ?

In the future I can quite imagine an AI would be able to examine the code to identify test conditions and generate a complete set of regression tests.

It couldn't prove the existing code was doing what the user wanted but could ensure nothing got accidentally broken by a bug fix or an update to third-party components or execution environment, which is the main reason we use test automation.

This could apply to end-to-end testing as well as unit tests.

Microsoft forges One Teams App To Rule Them All

Tim 11

Too little too late

The only people still using Teams are those in big corporates and government bureaucracies that only have one account anyway

Meta's pay-or-consent model hides 'massive illegal data processing ops': lawsuit

Tim 11

Re: basically proposing you pay it in order to enjoy your fundamental rights under EU law

I can't imagine EU law does gives you the fundamental right to enjoy any service you like without paying for it.

Work for you? Again? After you lied about the job and stole my stuff? No thanks

Tim 11

Re: Being polite is great

I would simply have informed them of my consultancy rate and terms for this project

Chrome engine devs experiment with automatic browser micropayments

Tim 11

Re: Good luck

google makes about a quarter of a trillion dollars a year from adverts - $30 per man, woman, and child on this planet. I suspect they make most of their money out of "people like you" (i.e. educated westerners) so $10 per month doesn't seem like an unreasonable estimate

BOFH: Looks like you're writing an email. Fancy telling your colleague to #$%^ off?

Tim 11

"coloured pencil office"

He better not be referring to the software development team...

Fujitsu will not bid for UK.gov business until Post Office inquiry closes

Tim 11

Re: Fushitesu

I'm not defending fijustu for a minute but let's not forget it's not fujistu that wdongly sued and imprisoned innocent people - it was the government that did that.

Artificial intelligence is a liability

Tim 11

Re: Wrong

Glad someone here is talking sense. for AI to be beneficial it doesn't have to be perfect; it doesn't even have to never kill anyone; it only has to be have a better track record than people. In many respects it's already over the line

Doom is 30, and so is Windows NT. How far we haven't come

Tim 11

This was a little later - around '95 I think - I was working for a small but multinational company, having one office in the UK and another in the US. We (in the UK) used to have an after-work deathmatch with the US guys while they were on their lunch break using our E1/T1 lines. It seemed absolutely revolutionary at the time.

Microsoft to intro dedicated mode for Cloud PCs

Tim 11

Re: Windows 365 Boot?

It's not remote desktop - remote desktop is a legacy technology that was around in the 90's and allowed people to do the kind of things they wanted to do in the 90's. Cloud PC is a completely brand new cutting-edge name for the exact same technology which now enables people to handle today's workloads.

Sysadmin's favorite collection of infallible utilities failed … foully

Tim 11

Defragging isn't a big deal anymore

yes partly because disks are faster but mostly because 99% of PCs don't use disks nowadays

Brit borough council apologizes for telling website users to disable HTTPS

Tim 11

A month to renew an SSL cert for a site that's gone offline!‽‽

Now that's what I call bureaucracy

Tim 11

Re: More shocked about Xitter use

if you're shocked by that, you must spend your whole life in a state of paranoid apoplexy

Tim 11

Re: So what's new?

Never ascribe to malice that which is adequately explained by incompetence

Lawyer guilty of arrogance after ignoring tech support

Tim 11


I don't know why but "Regomized" always makes me think of a portmanteau of "The Register" and "sodomized"

Tim 11

reminds me of an old trick when a colleague leaves their workstation unattended - just take a screenshot of the desktop, set it as wallpaper, then minimize all the windows

BOFH: Monitor mount moans end in Beancounter beatdown

Tim 11

seems like a cross between BOFH and yes, minister

Bad eIDAS: Europe ready to intercept, spy on your encrypted HTTPS connections

Tim 11

Re: At last! A Brexit bonus!

I'd like to think that in a better world it would be possible for a government to be sufficiently IT literate as to realise the impossibility of what they are trying to achieve - there is no simple way to distinguish between the good guys and the bad guys, which is basically what this comes down to.

Unfortunately, considering the twitter "blue tick" fisco it seems that even very IT-savvy organisations aren't immune from the same fallacy.

Shock horror – and there goes the network neighborhood

Tim 11

Re: The last time I heard a loud noise and things were restarting...

hmm I guess YMMV.

I had a brother MFC which could use non-branded ink but it used to clean the heads periodically (using up a lot of ink) even if you hadn't turned it on, so it needed a new set of ink cartridges every year even though I hardly used it.

Moved to a Samsung B+W laser 15 years ago which cost £50 to buy + about £1 a year in toner for the amount I print

Windows 11 23H2 is a Teams effort but Microsoft already spoiled the best bits

Tim 11

Re: Teams is all the rage nowadays

What I've got from this article (and my experience with it) is that Microsoft have been at the old product renaming game again. much like Skype, "Teams" is the current name for a bunch of unrelated code-bases all to do with instant messaging. They are probably all world-class garbage but I'm damn sure they aren't the same product.

Microsoft seeks EU Digital Market Acts exemption for underdog apps like Edge

Tim 11

you cynics should try it

it's basically like chrome but faster :-)

Word turns 40: From 'new kid on the block' to 'I can't believe it's not bloatware'

Tim 11

Re: That sounds about right...

I had a hercules grphics card so you could edit the document in 80x25 text mode then press a key (f7 I think) to get a non-editable wysiwyg preview, then press escape to go back to editing. Actually that was pretty productive

Intel stock stumbles on report Nvidia is building an Arm CPU for PC market

Tim 11

Over the last 25 years we've had windows on several non-intel architectures but none of them have taken off. I'd be surprised if this is any different

A cheap Chinese PC with odd components. What could go wrong?

Tim 11

Re: Running Linux Mint

What I'm curious about is whether these people who run Linux on low-end hardware are actually using them to do work or are they just using them to mess around or run IOD-type applications?

I find that once you've got a few copies of VS code and a dozen browser tabs open, the CPU and memory requirements of the OS itself are dwarfed by those of the apps, so the spec of machine you need is pretty much the same for linux as it is with windows

Half a billion pound NHS data platform award still stuck in the pipes

Tim 11

I struggle to understand how it's possible to spend £480 million on a computer system. 20 years ago handling a million users and petabytes of data was a serious technical problem but now it's just run-of-the-mill. The application logic itself is just basic C/R/U/D screens with some ETL.

X marks the bot: Musk thinks spammers won't pay $1 a year

Tim 11

Re: Thanks for the belly laugh, I needed that

I beleive the point is that if your (scammer/spammer) business model involes signing up for millions of accounts every year then the total amount would become a deterrent.

Someone mooted the idea a few years ago of charging a nominal amount to send an email, but since email is completely decentralised it's difficult to see how that could work

MariaDB ditches products and staff in restructure, bags $26.5M loan to cushion fall

Tim 11

will this affect the free database software versions?

will this affect the free database software versions?

Generative AI slashes cloud migration hassles, says McKinsey partner

Tim 11

Re: "when done correctly"

in my experience, highly paid consultants also do "....a probabilistic analysis of what word is most likely to 'come next' in the sentence, and did nothing much else, so are not 'intelligent' in any meaningful sense of the word"

Microsoft says VBScript will be ripped from Windows in future release

Tim 11

Re: It's an abomination, but...

One of the main reasons for Microsoft's continued commercial success is the strategy of giving business users the tools to produce their own software solutions (excel, VBA, SharePoint, PowerApps, Power BI).

Granted this means giving them enough rope to hang themselves and causing a myriad of horrible problems (technical and legal) along the way, but the ability to implement and customize business processes without having to involve the IT department is a killer feature which Microsoft's competitors still don't properly understand.

Excel recruitment time bomb makes top trainee doctors 'unappointable'

Tim 11

This is not an IT failing

This is not an IT failing or an Excel failing - it's a management communication failing

It's common sense at the most basic level to ensure that your employees know what they are supposed to be doing before they start a task, and to make sure they have done what you expected at the end.

What clearly happened here is some manager shoved a load of work at some employees without any context or explanation and without any control process to check whether they were doing the right thing.

both the size of the NHS and the use of IT are confounding factors here but management incompetence is at the core.

Google's third-party cookie culling to begin in Q1 2024 ... for 1% of Chrome users

Tim 11


Since safari has blocked third party cookies for several years now (albeit with an "advanced settings" opt out), I imagine most people who need this functionality have figured a way round it by now.

Not even the ghost of obsolescence can coerce users onto Windows 11

Tim 11

Re: Hanging on as long as possible.

Just upgraded from 10 to 11 and I only noticed two differences:

1 - rounded window corners which is a huge productivity boost because you can visually tell wherre one window ends and another begins. This alone is enough to make it almost as good as windows 7

2 - taskbar won't go vertical which basically takes the window management experience back to windows 3.1. At the moment I'm using a hack to get back the old taskbar. Not sure what I will do if the hack stops working before vertical taskbar is officially supported

Microsoft Cortana's farewell tour comes to the Windows Insider program

Tim 11

Re: Cortana, PUH-lease!!!

I'd suggest you HAVE a go with the windows DEVICE troubleshooter - you SEEM to have SOME problem with your caps-lock key

Watermarking AI images to fight misinfo and deepfakes may be pretty pointless

Tim 11

human = good, AI = bad?

I'm a bit baffled by most of the comments on here - they seem to be based on an underlying assumption that stuff generated by humans is genuine/trustworthy/high quality and what's created by AI is fake/low quality. This is obviously wrong - people have been producing fake/low quality content for years (whether deliberately or by inability) and will continue to do so

Graanted, at the moment a lot of AI output is low quality but in time that will improve and when we get to the point where AI can reliably generate higher quality content than people in a specific area then I'll be happy to switch.

I don't see why we need to distinguish between human vs AI at all. there's a lot of content out there, of varying quality, some generated by people and an increasing amount by machines. It's up to us as consumers to navigate that minefield and select appropriate content to consume. Whether it's produced by a human or a machine or a cominbination will become increasingly irrelevant

Contract for England's controversial health data platform delayed

Tim 11

Re: Have they done any due diligence?

Underfunding? At £480 million for yet another soon-to-be failed IT project, it seems like they've got money to burn

Switch to hit the fan as BT begins prep ahead of analog phone sunset

Tim 11

what about my fax machine?

will I be able to plug that into the back of the router?

Microsoft to kill off third-party printer drivers in Windows

Tim 11

When are scanners going to be properly supported?

For 20 years now it's been relatively painless to install a standard (non-MFP) printer in Windows using MS drivers.

How come installing a scanner or MFP is like going back to the early 90's?

So much faffing around with different versions of custom drivers, bespoke apps and control panels, some devices not working with some apps etc.

From browser brat to backend boss: Will WASM win the web wars?

Tim 11

If WASM+WASI existed in 2008, we wouldn't have needed to create Docker.

I think there's something missing here, what he maybe meant to say was:

If WASM+WASI existed in 2008, and we threw away all the code that had ever been written in the history of computing and rewrote it all in the new environment, we wouldn't have needed to create Docker.

BOFH: What a beautiful tinfoil hat, Boss!

Tim 11


low radiation is the worst - the less of it there is, the stronger the effect

I'll see your data loss and raise you a security policy violation

Tim 11

Re: To be fair...

I was once (in the mid-90's) called upon to investigate why our app had stopped working on one of the sales demo PCs. After a short troubleshooting session it was clear there was no database driver installed (informix if you're interested). But the app had been working a few days before. It transpired that the person who originally installed the app decided that the appropriate place to install the database driver was c:\temp which had then subsequently been deleted by someone else in order to free up disk space

Aerial cable tangles are still being strung up, but carriers are slowly burying the problem

Tim 11

I suspect those photos are publicity photos from after someone tidied them up - they are significantly less messy than most I have experienced

30 years on, Debian is at the heart of the world's most successful Linux distros

Tim 11

We should distinguish between server and desktop

For servers, it wouldn't be too much of an exaggeration to say Linux (and therefore Debian) has been a runaway success - as the author points out, FOSS enabled a hitherto unimaginable amount of scalability which is what has made the IT world what it is today

On the desktop unfortunately, the huge number of competing distros and variants on those distros, makes it a baffling and sometimes unreliable experience for many users (and I say that as a veteran of Windows, Mac and Linux who uses Ubuntu every day)

Google opens up Chrome 117 Developer Tools box, drops in a few spanners

Tim 11

what I'd really like

what I'd really like is the ability to see the content of HTTP requests that fail CORS validation. I understand that this is blocked from being passed to the rendering engine and JavaScript code, but it would be useful if I could see it in the console so I can at least try to troubleshoot the problem.

Microsoft yanks internal Windows 11 testing tool soon after release

Tim 11

Experimental new features

Thanks but no thanks, I have enough on my plate just dealing the bloatware that's already in the long-term-release channel.

Japanese supermarket watches you shop so AI can suggest more stuff to buy

Tim 11

if there was a bot that could direct you to a specific product...

If there was a bot that could direct you to a specific product you're actually looking for in a Tesco gigastore, that would be extremely useful.

I realise conventional wisdom is that the more I have to hunt round to find what I'm looking for, I'm more likely to pick up other stuff I don't want, but in reality I'll probably give up and go to Lidl where there's only 4 aisles