* Posts by phuzz

6046 posts • joined 23 Feb 2010

Thou shalt not hack indiscriminately, High Court of England tells Britain's spy agencies

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Re: Does any of this actually matter.........

GCHQ just collect the information, it's up to The Security Service (aka MI5) or the Police to do something with that information. They're the ones you should be aiming your rant at.

Although I presume you have a cast iron method for them to pick out the one idiot who is actually violent, out of the hundreds of others who say the exact same thing but never do anything about it...

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Re: Does any of this actually matter.........

(shhh! no one tell them about html tags!)

Pop quiz: You've got a roomful of electrical equipment. How do you put out a fire?

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Re: Sprinkler myth is all wet

Pool on the roof must have sprung a leak ;)

Explained: The thinking behind the 32GB Windows Format limit on FAT32

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Re: "Def-Pro"

Or indeed the Pacer. Intended as a short term (and more importantly, cheap) train, they're still in service today. Despite being intended to last only twenty years in 1980, and scheduled to be removed from service in 2019, there's still some in service today.

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Re: Future proofing size constraints

You know how well they built those early computers, they mean it could literally be used beat the crap out of something without getting a scratch.

Everybody's time is precious, pal: Sometimes it isn't only the terminals that are dumb

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Re: Reminds Me Of A Customer One Time...

In my last job, one of my users decided to get clever and added a BIOS password, which they then promptly forgot. After trying pulling the CMOS battery etc., my boss came up with a...different...solution.

He grabbed a 9V battery, and dragged the terminals across the motherboard until it was completely dead. Then he got me to ring up Dell and get them to come swap out the mobo under warranty.

A pub denied: One man's tale of festive frolics postponed by the curse of the On Call phone

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Re: In a Server Room not too far away....

I managed the opposite. I accidentally jiggled the power cable going into one of the PSUs in an HP blade enclosure, only to have all the PSUs trip, taking down every blade.

It turned out that one of the other 'redundant' power supplies was kaput, and failed when it experienced more load.

Expect to work between Christmas and New Year as Brexit uncertainty continues, UK SAP users told

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Re: "whether there is a Brexit deal or not"

There's still a possibility, although not a plausible one, that they might agree a deal before the end of the year, but it won't be much different to 'no deal' because that's what the brexiteers want. No deal means they can rewrite any regulations and make money for them and their chums.

Pure frustration: What happens when someone uses your email address to sign up for PayPal, car hire, doctors, security systems and more

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Re: Other casual people

Had GMail created different domains at national level

IIRC in the UK, they started off with addresses @googlemail.com, because of another company already owning the 'gmail' trademark.

Eventually I assume they threw enough money at the trademark holder that they sold up to Google, and everyone went back to their @gmail.com addresses.

(Reminds me of Sony finding out that my boss had trademarked 'PSP' in the UK)

Cops raid home of ousted data scientist who created her own Florida COVID-19 dashboard

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Re: Pointing guns at kids over a “hacking” case?

That's if they'd even bothered to wait before getting through the door. They might have decided to shoot first and plant 'evidence' later.

Bezos to the Moon: Blue Origin fires up BE-7 engine to be used in human lunar mission

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Sadly, we are unlikely to see another 25 years. While the probe continues to perform admirably, and engineers reckon the solar arrays will keep power flowing at least until 2026, other spacecraft carrying more advanced versions of its instruments are due for launch. It therefore looks like 2025 will see SOHO made redundant and the plug pulled.

That's not sad, that's good! It would be sad if it reached the end of it's life and there was nothing to replace it.

Japan sticks the landing: Asteroid sample recovered from Hayabusa2 probe

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Re: Everything about this is so cool

You think that's impressive, go look up the original Hayabusa probe! Despite practically everything going wrong, they still managed to return a useful sample.

Marine archaeologists catch a break on the bottom of the Baltic Sea: A 75-year-old Enigma Machine

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Re: Uninteresting

There are many coins machines in pristine condition in wallets around the world.

Why would anyone bother with some which has been rotting away under the ground for 1000 years?

There are two sides to every story, two ends to every cable

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Re: I was close

Reminds me of the story a friend told, about having to go find out why a whole school had lost it's networking.

Turned out that someone had decided to be "neat and tidy", by plugging a cat5 that had been dangling from a wall socket, into the socket next to it. The switches didn't have spanning-tree enabled, and swiftly took themselves out, trying to send packets around the loop

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Re: Recently...

Can you even buy hubs any more? Let alone a PoE one.

A tale of two nations: See China blast off from the Moon as drone shows America's Arecibo telescope falling apart

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There had been a small earthquake nearby that morning, so they were checking for additional damage to the cables (they'd been doing daily checks, so they could compare the degradation over time).

A 1970s magic trick: Take a card, any card, out of the deck and watch the IBM System/370 plunge into a death spiral

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Re: Tight loop

One part of my last job was keeping an eye on the backup system. One day, while looking at the reports it generated, I noticed that there was an option to print the report. "That sounds handy" I thought, and clicked the option with visions of a handy printout showing me that all was well when I got in every morning.

Of course, it wasn't that simple, the print out was the verbose log, including the path of every single file that was backed up.

Fortunately for me, the printer's output hopper could only cope with about 15cm depth of paper, and as I got in earlier than most people, I managed to cancel the rest of the job and jam the paper into a recycling bin before anyone noticed.

'Massive game-changer for UK altnet industry': BT-owned UK comms backbone Openreach hikes prices on FTTP-linked leased line circuits

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Re: This is exactly WHY...

Well BT and OpenReach are technically separate now, and have been for three years.

The problem is, OpenReach inherited their network from BT (all the way back to when it was part of the Post Office), so they still have (almost) a monopoly on the wires across the country. It also seems they inherited some execs from BT as well, because their reaction to this monopoly is to use it to try and fuck over ever single competitor as much as possible.

It would be interesting to see if they're trying to raise prices for BT as well.

How a nightmare wormable, wireless, automatic hijack-a-nearby-iPhone security flaw was found and fixed

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Re: What?

Not as disappointed as the NSA must be, that Apple have patched this.

Glastonbury hippy shop Hemp in Avalon rapped for spouting 'plandemic' pseudoscience

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Re: Glastonbury

You can go up the Tor for free, and it's a lovely view from the top (weather dependant).

For every disastrous rebrand, there is an IT person trying to steer away from the precipice

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You can certainly imagine why Mr Wanker might decide "I'm tired of everyone making fun of my name! I'm going to emigrate to the colonies, where a man can be proud to call himself a Wanker!"

Mysterious Utah monolith mysteriously disappears without trace

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Re: Monolith?

I guess that would be the slightly more 'poetic' use of the word to mean something like "singular in it's environment", which coming back full circle is why a pillar of metal could be described as a "monolith".

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Re: Weighed in as scrap?

"it really grates when I hear somebody call it a Robin Reliant"

That's understandable, you wouldn't want to Rely-on-it and no one would try to Rob-it.

SpaceX blows away cobwebs at dormant California pad with satellite launch as a Falcon 9 makes touchdown number 7

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Re: Impressive numbers.

"3D printing" covers a whole bunch of manufacturing methods, and Rocket Lab aren't using anything like the plastic-extruding machines you might have at home.

I assume they're using something like Selective Laser Sintering (SLS) which can indeed produce parts which can stand up to high pressures.

I suspect they call it "3D printing" because that's a buzzword that bamboozles investors, but the industrial level machines are as far advanced as a fully-automated, multiple-axis CAD-CAM machine is from a foot-powered wood lathe.

European Space Agency will launch giant claw that drags space junk to its doom

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Re: They should have gone with the James bond scoop design

Every day about 100 tons of asteroid dust burns up in our atmosphere, which is roughly the mass that we launch into space per year, and of course, most of what we launch doesn't come down.

While 100 tons per day does sound like a lot, the thing is, the Earth's atmosphere is really big. So while you've probably breathed in some asteroid particulates over your life, it's probably done less to you than standing in a room with a candle for five minutes.

That's why organisms on Earth don't really have to worry about anything entering the atmosphere, except the rare occasions when it's big enough to reach the ground.

Spending Review: We spy a stray £60m – is that all you can spare to help 5G market recover from UK kicking out Huawei?

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Re: Money tree

It's ok, because the government didn't give a fuck about care homes, enough pensioners have died that the State Pension payments are due to be £600M less than they would have been.

I'm sure that the government didn't deliberately have a policy of "let the oldsters die off to save money", if only because that would be killing off their biggest constituency.

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Re: Remember the Brexit bus?

What!? You're saying that a number on the side of the bus was a lie?

Who knew that hosing a table with copious amounts of cubic metres would trip adult filters?

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Re: Inside joke?

One of the companies we work with has a Time and Attendance system, which leads to tickets asking about the T&A system...

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Re: Cubic metres? cm^3? ?? What is its abbrev.??

And I'm sure many of us have in the past looked for the answer to a question on expertsexchange.com. These days they use the slightly different URL experts-exchange.com.

(Until they started locking the answers behind registration and I imagine their traffic dropped off a cliff. Of course, I'm sure the exec that came up with the idea got a nice bonus anyway.)

Master boot vinyl record: It just gives DOS on my IBM PC a warmer, more authentic tone

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I have a vague recollection of either a radio or TV show for early computer users (BBC Micro maybe?) that broadcast the code so that people at home could record it on cassette and try it at home.

Am I imagining that? Perhaps an older reader can add more information.

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Re: MP3?

Well, most people have a phone with internet access rather than an MP3 player these days, so why not just stream the audio directly.

I love the fact that you can take a zip* of the program code (for Elite in this case), have a website* convert it to streaming audio over the internet*, which eventually arrives over some sort of wireless connection* to your smartphone*, and plug that into an original BBC Micro and have it work as if it was plugged into a standard cassette player.

* none of these technologies were around/easily available when the BBC Micro was sold

AMD performance plummets when relying on battery power, says Intel. Let's take a closer look at those stats

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Re: I want to know how the processor knows it's running on battery volts

"I want to know how the processor knows it's running on battery volts"

As the other commentators have said, the OS tells the CPU when to use lower power modes (search for C-States and P-States), but what those modes are, and how much power they use, depend on the CPU design.

Depending on your OS you can probably force your CPU into full-power-and-damn-the-engines mode even on battery. Diagram of that to the right.

Of course, this swiftly gets complicated. For example, is it more efficient for a particular workload to run a CPU at higher power for a short period of time, or to use a low power mode which will necessarily take longer?

(I assume that things like limiting the screen brightness when you're on battery, is carried out by the hardware though).

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

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Re: Let's see

"That's a rational response that won't be a majority view."

It's really not very rational.

If you said "I'm going to give all my money to this nice man I met in the pub", and I replied "He's a scammer, don't give him anything". The rational response is not "maybe, maybe not, lets see how it all comes out in the wash".

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

We expected that exercise to be handled with a reasonable degree of care.

By who? Johnson, Farage and Rees-Mogg? (Oh, and we shouldn't forget David Davis I suppose).

Even for politicians, they're clearly more interested in themselves and their personal aggrandisement than actually governing. Has any of them shown any aptitude in the past for actually carrying out their grand plans?

What sold it to you? Was it the in-depth planning they did beforehand? Was it the careful accounting, where they laid out the figures on how the economy would fare? Perhaps it was the wealth of experience in the firms they planned pay to provide, eg, ferry services? Possibly it was the grasp of international law which allowed then to forget that Northern Ireland even exists?

Argue it on emotional grounds all you like, but if you're trying to say you looked at the case put out by Vote Leave and thought, "that looks like a reasonable degree of care", then I have to question your judgement.

When they said "£350 million for the NHS" did you believe them, or did you think "I'm sure that's just a minor slip up and definitely not a foretaste of what's to come"? Really, what was your reaction to that?

It's always DNS, especially when a sysadmin makes a hash of their semicolons

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case-sensitive is the only true way

But why?

Sure, I can see why you might want Captialised_Filenames, but why would you want to have File and file to exist as separate files in the same directory? Surely that's just asking for confusion?

And even if you did*, why not use the Amiga way, of allowing file/program names to be case insensitive unless you have ambiguous options (eg the f/F from above)?

(I bet I get more downvotes than sensible answers)

* and if so, I hope I never need to look for a particular file on one of your systems.

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson pledges £12bn green economy package

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Re: How exactly?

I've thought about it. I might even save money, and it would almost certainly cover all my needs, but like I said, it's not a wholly rational thought.

I like the feeling that I can go out of my house now, walk up the road to where it's parked, get in and go, as far, and for as long as I like, without needing to arrange it with anyone else. I fully admit that that's a petty reason to own a car, but it's the reason why I do.

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How exactly?

People who live in cities (including me) are an obvious market for electric cars. Short journeys and stop start traffic (and congestion charging) play to an electric car's strengths.

However, like most people who live in cities (at least European ones), I have to park my car on the street. And not 'on the street outside', but more 'on the street, somewhere near' my house. Even if I could regularly park right outside where I live, I'd have to somehow run a charging cable across the pavement to reach my car.

So, the only solution for cities is to have some kind public charging infrastructure, but what would that look like? I've heard suggestions that charging points be added to street lights, which is fine on the face of it, but on my road there's about ten cars for every street light, and probably double that further up the road.

So you'd need to add more charging stations, and to get past the aforementioned 'charging cables across the pavement' problem, they'd have to be by the kerb. However, not all cars are the same size, so depending on who'd parked where, you might have to stretch a cable quite a way to reach your car, and if you're unlucky, the charging post will block one of your doors.

Honestly, I've no idea what the solution is. I guess it will have to involve a (gradual) shift in attitudes towards car ownership, with less people owning their own cars. I could live without mine, but I've owned a car for more than half my life now, and I don't want to have to deal with the loss of the feeling of freedom that it gives me.

How Apple's M1 uses high-bandwidth memory to run like the clappers

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Re: Long term, I think we will see expansion options

This is that massive (and much needed) boot up Intel's arse.

Especially with AMD firmly taking the high end performance crown from them with Zen3, this is probably not a fun time for Intel.

As you say competition is good. Last time Intel were getting clobbered by AMD (Athlon 64 vs Pentium IV), Intel went back to the drawing board and came back with the Core architecture, so hopefully they'll take this opportunity to do the same.

Microsoft brings Trusted Platform Module functionality directly to CPUs under securo-silicon architecture Pluton

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Re: What Choice Do You Have?

It sounds more like SecureBoot to me.

Mind you, that was hailed as the end of being able to install Linux when it was announced too.

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TPM and Bitlocker

The thing I never quite understood about Bitlocker (MS's full drive encryption) working with a TPM is this:

If you don't have a hardware TPM chip (which most non-OEM motherboards don't have), then Bitlocker will prompt you for a password on boot, without which you can't access the harddrive. Like most other full-drive encryption methods.

However, with a TPM, Bootlocker knows that the harddrive is in the correct PC, and will unlock it automatically as part of the boot process.

So as far as I can tell, if you have the 'extra security' of a TPM, it makes it less secure.

Maybe I'm missing something.

With less than two months left, let's check in on Brexit: All IT systems are up and running and ready to go, says no one

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Re: "Check an HGV is Ready to Cross the Border"

Except of course, when you're talking about an 'orse.

A cautionary tale of virtual floppies and all too real credentials

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You need to pipe the output:

gci -Directory | where { $_.GetFileSystemInfos().Count -eq 0 }

You might want to chuck a -recurse in there depending on what you need.

(I amuses me how many downvotes you can get just by reminding people that Powershell exists :)

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Voyager 2 is back online after eight months of radio silence

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Re: You know you need coffee when..

Ah, and there was me thinking they'd changed to using Calibri.

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Re: DSN Now

If you mean the wibbly lines above them, I think that indicates that they're currently transmitting/receiving.

Former antivirus baron John McAfee collared, faces extradition to America on tax evasion, securities allegations

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Re: Parallels

When people talk about the US having a shit healthcare system, they're talking about the average healthcare. They're not saying that it's impossible to get top quality healthcare in the US (if you have enough money), they're pointing out that almost 10% of the US population have absolutely no healthcare at all.

I guess this highlights the different ways of thinking about healthcare. In Europe, when we talk about it, we generally referring to the whole system, covering the whole country. Whereas, an America talking about healthcare usually seems to only be talking about their individual health.

(To answer your question, my best guess is that someone who went to the US to get an operation did it because they wanted a holiday. If you're willing to pay US prices you can get equivalent treatment in the UK straight away. We still have private healthcare, it's just not necessary for most people).

Everybody's going to the Moon (and Mars): The Reg chats to ESA about 10-year plans and sending Tim back to space

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Re: because it is there

"because it is there"

Although in JFK's accent, it sounds more like "because it is they-ah"

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UK govt advert encouraging re-skilling for cyber jobs implodes spectacularly

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Re: Those raising issue at the outrage.

You sound outraged...


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