* Posts by Ian 55

890 posts • joined 19 Feb 2010


Samsung Galaxy A52 5G: Sub-$600 midranger makes premium phones feel frivolous

Ian 55

"The phone also feels a little unrefined due to its lack of wireless charging"

Given how bad for the planet wireless charging is because of how inefficient it is, I'd class that as a good thing.

Linux Mint 20.2 is a bit more insistent about updating but not as annoying as Windows or Mac, team promises

Ian 55

Re: Daily driver, but...

Agree about systemd.

PPAs do require a large level of trust though.

Ian 55

Re: Good granularity.

Didn't Mint hold back some security fixes because... some not OK reason, like having too many of them?

They've also managed to break "sudo apt-get dist-upgrade" in the past.

Windows 11 still doesn't understand our complex lives – and it hurts

Ian 55

Re: web Teams works on Linux

It is great to know that I am not the only one who cannot get Teams to work on Linux properly - it simply will not open links to meetings here.

I can, if forced, run it in a browser, but it's crap there.

The Android version at least gets me into meetings, even if it doesn't work well for messages at the same time.

Xiaomi my heart is still beating: Reg hack takes Chinese giant's new fitness band for a spin

Ian 55

Re: Cheap and Cheerful

Mine uses UK dd/mm dates, even though it is a Chinese model made international via the excellent 'Notify for Mi Band' android app.

Highly recommended - it adds loads of functionality.

Ian 55

Another Mi Band 4 owner

It's my third from them.

Mi Band 2 (about £18 from China, Dec 2017) was bought because you can, with a third party app, use it with Sleep on Android.

Mi Band 3 (£19.99 on offer from Amazon, Nov 2018) was clearly better - colour screen, more readable, waterproof rather than water resistant, more accurate step count, and now that app would send me text messages, vibrate on incoming calls / alarms, find my phone and more.

Mi Band 4 (about £18 from China, Nov 2019) had a better screen again, easier to use.

I get about a month between charging it, but I am only rarely measuring my heart rate.

Mi Band 5 didn't seem to add anything worthwhile, ditto thus one. It will do blood oxygen level, but I have a £5 finger thing to do that.

I get the 'only the best will do' attitude, but when I talked with some one who has a £100+ fitness tracker, they spent a chunk of time worrying if it would break / get snatched.

Here, it was under £20 and if it breaks, I will simply go back to the 3 unless the 7 or 8 offers something I actually want.

It gets worn all the time (and having a watch to tell the time is easier than dragging a phone out of my pocket) and I have never needed another wrist band for any of them...

Intel's latest patch set plugs some serious holes in CPU, Bluetooth, server, and – ironically – security lines

Ian 55

How much slower does this set of microcode updates make the CPUs?


Photographer seeks $12m in copyright damages over claims Capcom ripped off her snaps in Resident Evil 4 art

Ian 55

Re: A bit of he says / she says

Certainly if I were Capcom, I'd be saying that I was "communicating visual information to others" via including the textures in games.

Tesla Autopilot is a lot dumber than CEO Musk claims, says Cali DMV after speaking to the software's boss

Ian 55

Re: Fully Automatic my arse!

A fully intelligent self-driving car in NZ would know when to stop to look at the view!

The closest I came to an accident was on Coromandel - not the gravel roads at the top, but on the main coastal road, where some road works had left some gravel on the tarmac on a corner. I was in a hurry (all those viewing stops) and came close to going off a 10m drop into the sea. No barrier to even slightly reduce the chance of that happening, obs.

Website maker Wix embarks on weird WordPress-trashing campaign, sends 'influencer' users headphones from 'WP'

Ian 55

Re: WordPress can trash its own reputation thank you very much

Of course it is: not only does WordPress STILL not do anything to prevent or even slow bruteforce attacks because "people don't want to be locked out of their own site", they also provide a way to try hundreds of username/password combinations at once.

They also default to allowing comments on posts without enforcing the use of an anti-spam service because "people like comments".

UK's National Cyber Security Centre recommends password generation idea suggested by El Reg commenter

Ian 55


Give it my address and it says my location is something like


I type that in to its location finder, and it points to somewhere at the other end of the street...

Ian 55

Re: Biometrics and FIDO U2F

Paypal limit your password to something like 18 characters too.

W T Actual F?!?

Lenovo's latest gaming monster: Eight cores, 3.2GHz, giant heat sink, two fans. Oh, and it has a phone bolted on

Ian 55

Re: really want to play Minesweeper

The only way to play Minesweeper!

New systemd 248 feature 'extension images' updates immutable file systems without really updating them

Ian 55

Re: Errr but...

Gentoo - 24 hours of compiling everything from source so you can spend 2% more time in the idle loop.

Ian 55

Re: Errr but...

Shaving a few seconds off the boot time is irrelevant for 99.9% of Linux systems. My machines typically go months between reboots.

Adding a few more points of failure / security holes - which is what systemd has also done - is totally unacceptable.

IBM, Red Hat face copyright, antitrust lawsuit from SCO Group successor Xinuos

Ian 55

Re: The zombie rises again

"The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers."

PHP repository moved to GitHub after malicious code inserted under creator Rasmus Lerdorf's name

Ian 55

Re: Vulnerable by centralization

"I think you are confusing how PHP is developed."

No-one who remembers the classic code in the source for PHP that came down to..

int size;

size = EXPR;

if (size > INT_MAX || size <= 0) {

return NULL;


.. could be confused as to how PHP is developed.

PHP is the equivalent of running Flash on the server.

Red Hat pulls Free Software Foundation funding over Richard Stallman's return

Ian 55

Re: What were they thinking?

As a founder of the free software movement, RMS's contribution has been immense.

As a human being, he actively puts other people off from being involved.

Thank you, RMS, but it was way past the right time to go and there will be no good time to return without a fuck of a lot of learning.

We can't avoid it any longer. Here's a story about the NFT mania... aka someone bought a JPEG for $69m in Ether

Ian 55

Re: It just goes to show ...

It's not a "something", it's a number in a database.

Unlike, say, a number in a bank's record of people's balances, you can't actually do anything with it except masturbate over owning it, sell it to a bigger fool, and possibly feel guilty about how much unnecessary CO2 was generated in creating that bit of the database.

Apple stung for $308m in battle over patent used in FairPlay DRM software

Ian 55

Re: Eastern District of Texas

No longer true.

Chairman, CEO of Nominet ousted as member rebellion drives .uk registry back to non-commercial roots

Ian 55

Looking for a new registrar

Mine - and it wasn't GoDaddy for the reasons that should be obvious to anyone who's used them - doesn't seem to have signed up to vote in favour of the resolution.

Apart from the initial joining fee, it would make sense to become a member given how *.uk domains I have. Please can the new board reduce that £400 cost?

Ian 55

Re: 3 hours.

"I'm a desperate man! And second, I want some fresh coffee. And third, I want a recount! And no matter how it turns out, I want my old job back!"

Ian 55

Re: Very well done...

Give him whatever gong he wants too..

.. including a giant bronze one, as at the start of the old Rank films.

Huge if true: If you show people articles saying that Firefox is faster than Chrome, they'll believe it

Ian 55

And Firefox can cope with having over four thousand tabs open without killing even a 32GB RAM PC because of how much memory is needed.

As far as I am concerned, having better privacy plugins is just a bonus on top of that.

City of London Police warn against using ‘open science’ site Sci-Hub

Ian 55

Re: "data and research ... is ... more strategically valuable ... than copyright-busting"

You forgot to mention the profit margin of the journals...

Nvidia cripples Ethereum mining on GeForce RTX 3060 to deter crypto bods from nabbing all the kit at launch

Ian 55

Re: "GPUs for mining cryptocurrencies" -- Evil

Yeah yeah, but you can melt down jewellery or find someone who thinks the craft in making it makes it more valuable than the raw gold / silver / gems / whatever.

The only possible way to get your money back from Bitcoin et al is find a bigger fool to pay real money for it.

LastPass to limit fans of free password manager to one device type only – computer or mobile – from next month

Ian 55

Re: Rebulid?

Switched to Bitwarden in 2017, when LastPass doubled the cost of the 'premium' version without increasing in any way what you got for it..

.. and just removing features from the free version.

Bitcoin surges, exchanges flooded after Tesla says it bought $1.5bn in BTC, hopes to accept it as payment soon

Ian 55

Even if 74% of the energy comes from renewable sources, that's GigaWatts of electricity that's not being used for something actually worthwhile.

Your $100 in 2009 would have been hacked from some exchange, probably Mt Gox, or you'd have lost the private key.

One word for anyone believing the price is sustainable: Tether.

Ian 55

Re: Bubbleception

Casinos have regulators.

They're also not destroying the planet via wasting massive amounts of electricity to shout 'That's Numberwang!' at each other.

Apart from that...

Ian 55

Re: Bubbleception

Tesla is so screamingly obviously overvalued (the car maker most likely to be the biggest in the world? Come on, especially with that idiot in charge..) that there are so many companies shorting its shares, it's likely that there aren't enough available for them all to buy them back without pushing the price still higher.

Certainly, if I had any, I'd be selling. Over a billion on something that's not literally a ponzi, but just acts like one?

I wonder if this is another case of some boss getting his company to buy his bitcoin. They get loads of money they can actually use, so who cares about what happens to the company?

Why make games for Linux if they don't sell? Because the nerds are just grateful to get something that works

Ian 55

Re: Yes and no

Mmm, the main problem with Linux gaming is that the people who write Linux-first games are into genres - clickfests of RTS and platform etc - that I'm not interested in.

Ian 55

While a native version is lovely, working on Proton is enough for me to be happy.

Ah, Ryan. My story is the port of Dear Esther, where it didn't work as well as running the Windows version under WINE. I have a memory of looking at the Linux version and it being, from what I could see, the Windows version bundled with WINE... The producers said they'd fix it but never did.

Having a multi-platform game isn't particularly difficult if you use the right libraries. I beta-tested a new version of a favourite game - the author was astonished to be told that it Just Worked, probably because they'd used Unity to build it.

If a game doesn't work under Proton, it's almost as if the authors have gone out of their way to stop it doing so.

Stony-faced Google drags Android Things behind the cowshed. Two shots ring out

Ian 55

Re: A thought

Oh, I'd say that lots of people would like to install apps on their car.

It's just a good idea not to let them.

Marmite of scripting languages PHP emits version 8.0, complete with named arguments and other goodies

Ian 55

It's also appallingly inconsistent about what a library function that does something is named.

And it's from the people who thought testing if an integer variable is bigger than maxint was a good idea in a test with security implications.

The GIMP turns 25 and promises to carry on being the FOSS not-Photoshop

Ian 55

Re: Photoshop licensee

Still a complete 'get lost Adobe' here at the idea of renting a key part of the workflow.

If only they'd been as keen to get rid of the endless bugs in Flash as they were to find ways to charge users more.

It may date back to 1994 but there's no end in sight for the UK's Chief customs system as Brexit rules beckon

Ian 55

Re: Still. The Farage Garage will be open for business on time.

One sign of how fucked we are is that the designers of Football Manager did vastly more research and planning around the implications of Brexit than the sodding Brexiteers and the Brexiteer governments ever did.

The FM team weren't afraid to let people know of the trade-offs - "You want that French / German / Italian / Spanish / etc player? Tough, there are no work permits available..." - either, whereas the governments have been in full-on "There are no downsides to Brexit, only a considerable upside" for over four years.

I work therefore I ache: Logitech aims to ease WFH pains with Ergo M575 trackball mouse

Ian 55

Re: I've used M570s for years because they are great, but...

Oh, and the other issue with the MX Ergo is that they've made the hole you use to push the ball out for cleaning smaller for some unknown reason. The blunt end of a pencil / rubber will no longer fit through the hole, so I've had to get something else for its weekly clean.

Ian 55

Yep, with a separate USB numeric mechanical keypad, for when you miss those keys. Cost about £12 from China.

Ian 55

I've used M570s for years because they are great, but...

.. the plural is because the sodding cheapskates at Logitech put rubbish switches for the main buttons in the M570, so after a while, you end up double-clicking every time.

Given how long it's been a known issue, it's disgraceful that they continued to use them,

The MX Ergo is the alternative. Even if the marketing is a bit misleading in terms of their adjustable angle: you can have 0 degree tilt or 20 degrees tilt, nothing in the middle.

Why they've never done a left-handed version of either is beyond me.

Remember when the keyboard was the computer? You can now relive those heady days with the Raspberry Pi 400

Ian 55

Re: Lame excuse for no full fat HDMI

Would love to know how many people EVER run two displays off one of these.

1% of buyers? Less?

Banking software firm tiptoes off to the cloud with MariaDB after $2m Oracle licence shocker

Ian 55

Re: Nice ending

How much do you have?

Apple suffers setback in epic Epic Games games fight: Federal judge zaps damages counterclaim

Ian 55

You're not thinking the Apple way, and clearly do not deserve to be near any of its devices...

Apple now Arm'd to the teeth: MacBook Air and Pro, Mac mini to be powered by custom M1 chips rather than Intel

Ian 55

You missed "watching videos and masturbating"...

Flash haters, rejoice! Microsoft releases tool to let you nuke Adobe's security horror before support ends

Ian 55

It'd be great if they could release the source code and its history

Then we could see how many times there were things like

if intvar > maxint then ..


// if InputOutOfRange() then Reject() ; // removing this made the routine 0.001% faster!

in the code.

I always wondered if the authors were responsible for Microsoft's Stacker clone, which wrote to the real disk and then just assumed the write had been successful because that saved a microsecond over actually checking that it had.

'This was bigger than GNOME and bigger than just this case.' GNOME Foundation exec director talks patent trolls and much, much more

Ian 55

Re: I'm just rebuilding my desktop ...

Mint has also managed, repeatedly, to mess up being able to upgrade to a new version via

(edit /etc/apt/sources.list)

sudo apt-get update

sudo apt-get upgrade

sudo apt-get dist-upgrade

Fortunately, Ubuntu MATE became a thing, so I switched to that.

Facebook rejects Australia's pay-for-news plan, proposes its own idea: How about no more articles at all, sunshine?

Ian 55


Ian 55

Re: news represents a fraction of what people see in their News Feed

What do people see?

Cat photos, platitudes written in all caps because that's SO MUCH MORE MEANINGFUL, and the efforts of racist bots would seem to cover about 95% of it.

Relying on plain-text email is a 'barrier to entry' for kernel development, says Linux Foundation board member

Ian 55

Re: "plain old ASCII text is a barrier to communications"

At some point, everyone who isn't trying to push ads will accept that HTML email was a mistake.

Kinda goes without saying, but shore up your admin passwords or be borged by this brute-forcing botnet

Ian 55

It is appalling

.. that WordPress will still, in 2020, allow attackers as many attempts to bruteforce your login details as they like, as fast as they like and do absolutely nothing to detect or stop this unless you install a plugin or similar. Which they KNOW that most users don't.

They also make it easier for attackers to do this by providing an interface that can be - and they KNOW is - abused to try a 100+ username / password combos at once. Again, attackers can do this as fast as they like and for as long as they like.

Instead, Automattic are far more concerned with forcing the pile of steaming bloatware that is Gutenberg on its users, complete with its own set of security holes.

Microsoft drops a little surprise thank-you gift for sitting through Build: The source for GW-BASIC

Ian 55

If you're looking for the Z-80 version

Including, the small bits that Bill apparently actually wrote, someone did a disassembly of the ROM for the TRS-80 about 35 years ago.

I suspect the 8088 version is based on it.



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