* Posts by DaemonProcess

130 publicly visible posts • joined 8 Apr 2011


Google Drive misplaces months' worth of customer files


as we are here...

Maybe they used ZFS and discovered reading not-quite-written data causes corruption, hehehehe.

Seriously though I suspect it is a cache-sync issue here. Same sort of idea but a different level.

I would like to see the cloud operators enter into a big mutual agreement where none charge egress data fees for backups to another cloud provider.

But I can't see them doing it, even though a simple API call on their platform could wipe everything.

If you are on M365 you have the option of independent backups to AWS or elsewhere from ISVs.

Data-destroying defect found after OpenZFS 2.2.0 release


ZFS here we go again

"ZFS is fast, more fully featured and totally safe"

" Oh, there's another teeny-weenie buggette that may corrupt some data but most likely not"

I'm still steering clear of this. From the description it sounds like multi-user / multi-process testing may be a bit lacking at the moment. Could all fanbois please volunteer.

Amazon to staff: Come into the office – it'd be a shame if something happened to your promotion


cheap layoffs

The cheapest way to downsize ("optimize demographic talent profile") is to encourage resignations, so they can shift your role either offshore or these days onto a small bit of serverless code.

No, no, no! Disco joke hit bum note in the rehab center


poor taste

I'd have uploaded the theme from Mash - Suicide is painless


Well yes...

UK courts award CGI £60M deal to keep ancient tech alive


Court with their pants down

and now of course they are worried that any new kit will be crushed when the RAAC crumbles to dust.

Getting to the bottom of BMW's pay-as-you-toast subscription failure



When I went into a BMW dealership once and asked to look at their Z3 (it was 1997) they said sure, but after judging my scruffy IT worker just finished a weekend of changes unshaven look then asked how I expected to pay for it. I was a contractor... so I said cash and walked out never to return.

They seem to expect the customers to be mad fanboys, just like Ferrari. But BMW engineer the car's life at 4 years or 200k km, maybe less. Hardly anyone under 40 still thinks they engineer cars built to last. Thanks to the multitude of Youtube car channels people are better educated. So as well as trying to sell to the old fanboys, BMW are now creating cars for the aspirational wealthy demographic, the ones who cant actually afford it but want to flash the badge at their mates on the estate or on Instagram.

Bodhi Linux 7 brings Enlightenment to Ubuntu


worth a try

I downloaded and ran Bodhi for a few years and loved it. It is well worth a try.

Want to live dangerously? Try running Windows XP in 2023


nostalgic start

Your next challenge in os/2 Warp !

Why? Because you can!

Producers allegedly sought rights to replicate extras using AI, forever, for just $200


new tech

Normally with new tech it's vice and fraud crime that is first to use it for profit, such as dodgy crypto dealers. Now it is major corporations backed with lawyers.

Better re-train as a hairdresser.

Without competition, TCS wins back UK pensions body in £1.5B mega-deal


Re: And my privacy??

They are allowed to offshore provided that they keep the same controls over data as you have in the UK. The fact that the eyes on the data won't be in UK doesn't matter.

Sales has very little to do with common sense or impartiality. It is all about giving the customer a warm and fuzzy. Most of the clients know nothing at all about running IT and seriously cannot tell the difference between proposals. They just go with who schmoozes them the best. gives the most warm and fuzzy assurances, has the best apparent rates/terms and says yes to everything.

Absolute mad lad renders Doom in teletext


ICL text

The old British computer company ICL in the 1980s had an internal information text system, which was nearly identical to teletext. This was a kind of fore-runner to an Intranet containing company announcements. It ran on series 39 mainframe. There was even a lonely hearts page, which I thought was hilarious because all the women in the office would try to work out who was looking for a date. You would see the pages scroll through on monitors in offices. I can't remember if you could log into it, too long ago now.

Australia fines tech companies for exploiting foreign tech workers



You forgot to mention a land of inferior cricket :-)))

and rugby

don't go near Aussie rules either, that's no-rules violence.

That old box of tech junk you should probably throw out saves a warehouse



Like my box with the ancient ISA hard disk that contained the private keys for the 600 bitcoin I bought in 2010. I even made sure it was destroyed and bent with a hammer before I took it all to the tip. This will haunt me for the rest of my days.

CAN do attitude: How thieves steal cars using network bus


less than a BMW then.

Some bimmers require you to drain the coolant and remove the radiator in order to change a light bulb. Purposely designed to make more money for the dealers and prevent owner servicing.

Its rounded up to a 2 hour job and up to 750 squids to you guv.

British govt tech supplier Capita crippled by 'IT issue'


bill paid?

Maybe they somehow forgot to pay Microsoft for a few months.

Boffins claim discovery of the first piezoelectric liquid



It came to us like a bolt from the blueberry syrup.

Duelling techies debugged printer by testing the strength of electric shocks


Re: I've Seen Both Sides Now

I've half a mind to downvote you just for reminding me of many gettydefs horrors....


One up from termcap symbology though so I let you off.

Thought you'd opted out of online tracking? Think again


Re: The non personalised ads .

You do realise you are now testing El Reg as well, since you just mentioned the bands here? Sneaky.


cookies irrelevant

Even though cookies were the most accurate way of tying an ID to sites and adverts, what happens now instead is that every click-through and site visit is tagged with your ID and those clicks are themselves sent to analytical aggregators that use probabilities to tie your social media ID. The cookie laws are irrelevant and simply bypassed.

And yes - the way the opt in/out panes work is a simple logical OR of Allow or Legitimate Interest for you to be tracked.

Some of these opt-in/out tracking panes refer to a long list of 3rd parties who you have no direct control over whether they track you or not.

These analytical aggregators have strict NDAs with the social and search giants so they cannot publicise what they do.

As the researchers found out, the companies are complying with the letter of the law but not the spirit and in some case not even the former, through outsourcing of tracking under NDA and other contractual terms that keep them free from direct accusation of non-compliance.

What you need to know about the real-time capable edition of Ubuntu 22.04


capacity and scheduling

A lot of my problems with this in the past have been around either bad software, interrupts, poor configuration or general capacity.

I used to use processor affinity to bind cores to network or serial cards interrupt servicing, making sure I left free cores for other tasks. I outsmarted myself a couple of times with that but it did work with heavy NFS.

Thankfully eventually the kernel got better than me and the speed and number of the cores meant I really didn't need task sets any more.

My USB music recording has never been perfect even with Ubuntu studio low latency. At least Ubuntu got Jack working which is more than I ever managed from source.

Thanks for the heads-up about Nvidia chips.

Debian dev to the rescue after proposal to remove Itanium from Linux kernel


I reckon the explicit branch prediction and parallelism instruction bits took a hammering from the speculative execution bug workarounds.

Probably runs slower than it's predecessor now.

Prepare to be shocked: Employees hate this One Weird Clause


foreign law

I've seen this:

Although working in the UK and resident in the UK, you agree to be bound by the laws of Texas... In the event of any proceedings against you, you must lodge a bond of 10000 US dollars with a court in Dallas within 48 hours.

UK spy agency violated Snooper's Charter with 'unlawful' data retention


I don't mind

Actually I am far more likely to trust the civil servants than the politicians above them. I read somewhere that every prime minister up to Cameron used these services to snoop on journalists and political opponents and I don't think the incumbent mob will be much better. However in some cases even that is justified, because back in the 1970s labour and the unions were indirectly receiving money from the USSR in an effort to de-stabilise the country. Out of chaos comes opportunity for the fringe elements to gain power. I still suspect Haroid Wilson may have been a KGB agent especially as he canned TSR2.

Here's how to remotely take over a Ferrari...account, that is


Slow improvements

Things are getting better, slowly. Remember the Chrysler vulnerability of a few years back which allowed root dbus calls directly from the internet with a default password, so that anybody could crash a car remotely?

Computer security as applied to the automotive industry is now being taught at the University technical colleges in the UK, so some cars of the future (e.g. JLR) should at least have better authentication and a chain of trust. But how much of this software development is being guided by this when the cheaper programmers are elsewhere in the world and the directors think that sales depend on features/benefits more than security?

The problem here is that most of these attack vectors involved hacking the manufacturer and getting hold of the credentials from the inside, so it doesn't matter if you have a strong password, trusted certificates or even blockchain tech, people get to your car and account through the front door with that.

So it's more a matter of if, rather than how, hence the PR efforts to prevent widespread panic about car security.

IBM staff grumble redeployment orders are stealth layoffs


the new standard

Happened to me once.

The only thing more evil than being laid off is being told you are not being laid off but there isn't a job for you any more. Basically forcing the employee to find themselves a new job without being paid redundancy severance.

Ironically I had just saved the company over a million pounds in the previous 4 months.

So I went contracting and doubled my salary for the next 15 years. Ironically my contracting roles tended to last longer than all my permanent roles... a lack of staff appraisal system is probably the reason.

Techies are bad a selling themselves, always better to have a recruiter sell you.

British Airways flights grounded due to glitch in flight planning app


Hurley burly

I saw Elizabeth Hurley tweeted at BA saying she was stuck in Antigua for 20 hours. I was about to say lucky for some but she said nobody had been given food or water or access to a hotel.

In praise of MIDI, tech's hidden gift to humanity


31,250 bps - from a Spectrum!

Hi. In case nobody said it previously, well done for getting 31,250 bits per second midi out of a Speccy! And if you kept it all in sync then even better. I struggled to send serial faster than 9600.


Re: works mostly...

I've struggled with my old Korg Trinity Pro-X - nobody makes software to talk to any keyboard that old. Korg software is only written for Apple kit. So with the increasing age and likelihood of electrical gremlins I sold it and went fully virtual. :-/

Microsoft will help trim your Azure bill to encourage loyalty


price increase

April's big price increases caused a few companies to jump to AWS. GCP also offers some good deals. Azure's growth is partly because Microsoft are forcing customers into it by putting more features into Azure AD and associated products, such as Purview and Sentinel, many of which need Azure AD P1 or P2 to get the full features. Its very hard to fight that in the Enterprise and means a lot of companies feel forced to keep at least a minimal Azure account to integrate all identities.

AI recruitment software is 'automated pseudoscience', Cambridge study finds


nasty process

I agree with the report.

Recruitment by the Tiktok generation for the Tiktok generation.

A match made in heaven: systemd comes to Windows Subsystem for Linux


kill me now

Sorry, that should be kill -9 $ME and I don't care what gets left open and hanging.

or in WSL: sudo systemctl stop $MYSERVICENAME and maybe it will stop it or maybe it will complain and leave it running.

Now if systemd could go a bit further into Windows it could improve the powershell horror

Woman forced to sell 4-bed house after crypto exchange wrongly refunded $7.2m


the amount is an issue

Crypto.com have been laying off staff.

Interesting to note that for a large sum of money they are willing to go to the court to get refunded in dollars, yet when a user of their exchange makes a mistake that loses tokens Crypto.com are unwilling to accept any liability.

For example I transferred my last 1 Eth from Crypto.com to my coinbase Eth wallet, something I had done a few times before - except that being very tired I stupidly accepted the "default" option of using the Crypto,com owned chain "CRO" which means that my Eth magically vanished from the world.

Yes I accept it is my fault for not being careful enough to assume they would try to dupe me.

The fact that the same target wallet address on the cro chain isn't owned by anybody individually means that Crypto.com have my Eth by default and will not send it back.

You cannot reverse crypto transactions. It's also very hard to get support from any crypto exchange and harder to start legal action when they are based offshore.

Some good advice came from someone above, always test transfer the minimum amount and check it gets there before you send the rest.

In other advice, I'm right out of crypto now, back into shares - caveat emptor.

AI detects 20,000 hidden taxable swimming pools in France, netting €10m


Re: If it steers boots on the ground to double check

No it's 2 different organisations in France with >2 times the consequential bureaucracy. For them to communicate directly would be far too simple for the French - who would audit the data etc.

The detail required in the forms for the two types of property tax in France (fonciere and habitation) is unbelievable. Unchecked rampant snooping to counter a culture of personal secrecy. They want the size of all the rooms, corridors, number of bathrooms, size of attic space, cellar, square metres of patio area - yes they charge you for that, size of pool, whether an inflatable pool can be considered permanent, number of outbuildings and purpose of each one, size and purpose of all land, whether you have a terrestrial TV aerial which is I suppose their version of a TV licence tax.

NASA's Lunar Orbiter spots comfortably warm 'pits' all over the Moon



So now we know where to put Robot Daneel Olivaw.

Near-undetectable malware linked to Russia's Cozy Bear


insistently dumb

Every week I hear of users who _demand_ to open any email and attachment they receive. Regardless of all the security training they get. Then they say it's our fault for allowing malware through. The question is... what legally constitutes enough protection these days - 3 different AV scanners, sandboxes, what else?

China’s top court calls for blockchain to record vast number of transactions



As stated it will be bring proof that a transaction has taken place. Hopefully a weapon against fraud and corruption by officials and private individuals. But only if it has been designed properly with no single control over the chains.

The 1 party system puts all the power in 1 place with 1 single version of the truth, including re-writing history.

VMware customers have watched Broadcom's acquisitions and don't like what they see



I dont understand why Broadcom think VMWare has a future. I heartily agree that it will probably be stripped of cash, geared up to the point of no investment and used as a means to deprecate non-Broadcom chips in the VMWare market. Medium to long term WMWare are going to be replaced by a mixture of cloud, HyperV, Docker and HCI. In my opinion engineers starting now should start with infra as code such as Nutanix and Terraform along with cloud qualifications.

Seriously, you do not want to make that cable your earth


Re: almost whoops

Yes I've seen that too - 9-12 inches of solid cable under floor. They could barely get the tiles down on the top layer. At the bottom of it all was the 40 year old analogue phone system and alarm. At least that building was being powered down and decommissioned.

As opposed to the 2 electricians I once saw arguing over 3 black cables connected to my shiny new HP Superdome (64 kilowatts) arguing over which black cable was the blue phase....

Google cancels bi-annual performance reviews, shifts to GRAD system


hate them

what a total waste of time. Embarrassing. Hurtful. Stressful. Darwinian. Only the most persuasive survive. Large employers only run them to quantify who to lay off with some data that they think can stand up in a tribunal. No other reason. Same for 'objectives'. If you do your job and your manager is happy there doesn't need to be anything else. Its when your manager isn't happy that they want data to kill you with.

Don't hate on cryptomining, hate the power stations, say Bitcoin super-fans


Re: Just ban it already

Its not anonymous at all - people who have stolen crypto and tried to launder it or wash it through privacy tokens and split it through thousands of small transactions have been fully traced and caught.

As is often the case with new tech, the scammers online who are selling false promises are giving the whole base a bad name. I they are selling trading education then it means they aren't making any money doing it. As for NFTs and metaverse pseudo-land, I'd rather trade a 90s Tamagochi. Who remembers Linden Labs 2nd Life? That was centralised and still went unfashionable.

So 2% of crypto transactions are reckoned to be fraudulent but against 5% of banking transactions it seems to me that the banks need to be stopped from assisting criminals more than crypto exchanges.

As for miners - yes its got far too energy intensive due to large corporations trying to hoard all the minted tokens. Proof-of-stake is the way to go. I like the idea of a publicly auditable proof of transaction as a cure for the banker's fraudulent ways.

ZX Spectrum: Q&A with some of the folks who worked on legendary PC



Bless these guys for my 33 year career in IT, I would probably have been digging holes in roads otherwise.

Ex-Googlers take a stab at building 'general intelligence' that makes software do what you tell it


Re: Autopilot

There have been PhDs in formal knowledge elicitation undertaken since 1988 afaik....



So they are trying to make the computer reason at a meta level and maybe meta-meta level. Just as Tesla discovered with early versions of Autopilot, you can make it see things at face value but unless you combine that with additional context from short and long term memory (ie what just happened and previous experience), with rules/laws etc the NN is not going to be able to drive flawlessly. And it isn't just a case of adding those contexts alongside what you have.

TMC tried to create these meta rules 25 years ago but got stuck in between rules, too-slow computers and the inefficient ML algorithms of the day.

Not sure I want chip sentient intelligence, droid slavery, droid armies and general unemployment starting with programmers.

ZX Spectrum, the 8-bit home computer that turned Europe on to PCs, is 40



The basic editor and interpreter was written in a short period of time by 1 hero, who had to code for small memory rather than performance. As such a few ideas were sub-optimal for performance, such as number arithmetic, goto/gosub searches, functions, stream i/o, etc. I found a compiler was a good idea and there were several available. It all started my 30 year IT career and I've been coding on and off as an amateur for 40 years.

Microsoft plans to drop SMB1 binaries from Windows 11


ID theft

NCSC recommend stopping SMB2 where possible, also. Unfortunately it shares Windows internals with SMBv3 so cannot be disabled in your registry without also clobbering SMBv3. I don't know if NFSv4 is any better, but a lot of devices won't support it out without re-configuration.

Now that 1gbit broadband is becoming more common, a lot of these home NASs will be replaced by Cloud storage. The only thing stopping me at the moment is the pathetic 1.2mbit/second uplink speed.

Your home NAS may also photos / scans of your passport, driving licence, utility bills and bank statements someone in your house once needed to apply for something.

Yes it needs to be secure, encrypted and protected from all access. I use a mirrored pair of USB drives on a raspberry pi with nft protection.

Preferably behind a 2nd firewall because you shouldn't trust the broadband provider's router/firewall to be right up-to-date with patches. I just discovered my Sky Q router has a 2nd non-visible set of firewall rules that we cannot see - for example try blocking both ways and then point your browser at it - yep it still works and sends you out to the internet. There's no way of knowing if that is a second chain or forward/pre-routing rule, or what else they have hidden from us. I don't even know if my rules to stop UPNP are worthless now, because it don't have anything that uses it.

Any fool can write a language: It takes compilers to save the world



The gnu version of yacc is bison - flawless open source pun.

UK arm of Sungard Availability Services goes into administration


high cost and accounting

The Sunguard place near Heathrow is basically a huge American design. I can't believe they did a sale and lease-back on their own design. Given the huge amount of debt these companies happily run, they would have been better off owning it under a commercial mortgage. The building would be worth more and their balance sheet would be much better, but accounting principles....

Also the nature of the recovery business isn't helping them - they have to own and operate old kit - many items are off mainstream support now and they are not power-efficient - e.g. small capacity spindle disk drives and old slow CPUs.

As for barbers - the town centres have been gutted by Amazon and Ebay - only service industries such as beauty and food remain, where you have to be on premise. Ok I will make an exception for estate agents but that's only because their profit margins are obscene.

The wild world of non-C operating systems


cryptus cunning lingua interruptus

Go back far enough and the idea of purchasing an operating system for your computer was optional. The manuals described the hardware architecture, processor registers, i/o processing, data storage formats, switch functions etc. You could purchase an o/s or write your own in any language you could write a compiler program for.

Fundamentally at a low level, the o/s language needs to able to cater for operations direct in CPU registers with specific hardware instructions, shared memory segments, the ability to read from / write to direct memory addresses, indivisible (test+set) instructions, interrupts,volatile latches or semaphores at known (fixed) addresses. Most languages these days try to abstract all this away from the possibility of harm. As CPUs these days are gaining more high level instructions (e.g. AES, TLS) then the number of languages to support it all reduces.

The right to repairable broadband befits a supposedly critical utility


Big sparks

I personally witnessed a 3 foot spark between the phone line and the central heating when our house was struck by lightning. Surge protectors are fine for protecting you when someone else in the area has been struck but not much use when you yourself are struck.

The surge down the phone line blew up much of the green junction box before the line was broken/vaporised. I guess electricity can flow along liquid metal for a microsecond. A strike is several 3-15 consecutive rapid strikes down and up as the potential balances out between ground and sky. All this time it is seeking other ways to find ground. I witnessed plasma glowing up the standard lamp and it also blew our land line phone right up the stairs.

The question now is whether anyone has had a strike blow up the diode on the end of their fibre connection. If it sits in a metal box which is earthed I guess the answer is yes and if situated close to ground then a constant stream may also melt the thin fibre strands at point of connection. I once got one of those stuck in a finger - worse damn splinter ever due to brittleness. Dont ever breathe them in.

Local Wimax had been installed in our old French village for those people STILL stuck at equivalent to isdn speeds on their adsl. It works well, but would be even better if the church would only allow the aerial to be moved to the side of their steeple.

I certainly feel for the people in rural Australia and USA who are stuck with monopoly suppliers and terrible customer service. Starlink is a disruptor if you can also afford battery backup and that isnt fried. A solar panel and Powerwall set-up would be useless after a strike, which would start by blowing up the control circuitry and then fry wires in all of the panels. Our strike travelled 30 metres down the shielded electric cable through the garden and took out the light in the garage on it's way to the remote earth connection.

FAA now says 5G airports may interfere with Boeing 737s


Re: Out of band power

Thanks for that info, I'm generally ignorant of this tech - it is a bit like doppler but with EMR instead of sound?

Another ignorant teenager's question along the lines of tin foil hats, couldn't they just fit upside-down metal umbrellas on top of the 5G transmitter towers near to airports..

The Japanese method seems more power efficient to me anyway.

Verizon / Comcast / whoever's board is penny pinching a couple of million in spend when their accounts report in billions.