* Posts by Boothy

1223 publicly visible posts • joined 17 Jun 2011


NASA wants to believe ... that you can help it crack UFO mysteries


Re: Cunning Plan

Tin foil?

Scientists trace tiny moonquakes to Apollo 17 lander – left over from 1972


A furlong is 201.168 metres long, so your comment doesn't even make sense!

Soon the most popular 'real' desktop will be the Linux desktop


Re: Wunnerful was never the point

Just on the gaming side, and granted this is a sample size of one, i.e. me.

But I recently decided to give Linux a go as a gaming system (around January), but wanted to be able to fall back to Windows if needed, so I went dual boot. So an existing Win 10 install (aka my main Gaming Rig OS), I then added Linux Mint, installed to a separate SSD (no real reason for Mint other than I was already familiar with it in various VMs).

The install went well, Mint recognised all hardware out of the box (Ryzen 5800X3D + AMD 6900XT). Including gaming specific keyboard and mouse. The only extra bit of software I needed to install was 'ckb-next', to get the back-light of my Corsair keyboard to come on (aka RGB).

Steam (which is where the majority of my games library is) has had a Linux native client for many years, and with the advent of the Steam Deck and Proton [1] (which is what prompted me to give this a go), this now makes installing Windows only titles a breeze on Linux.

A few games still work better under Windows, (MS Flight Sim for one, some of the Total war games), but most other games work just as well on Linux as they do under Windows, some actually performing better on Linux! For example some legacy games I've tried, that were written for Windows 7 or earlier, can be difficult to get running on Windows 10 (crashing etc), but work fine on Linux via Proton. Others that I had issues running under Windows 10, such as Knights of the Old Republic II (crashes regularly for me, tried all sorts), turned out to have a native Linux version, which works better (for me anyway) than the Windows version did!

Overall, I now spend probably 95%+ gaming on Linux, and if any new purchased don't work under Linux, they get refunded, or at least that's the plan, I haven't actually had one yet that failed to work! Can't see me ever going back to Windows now for gaming, at least not on any sort of regular basis.

If you want to see the state of Linux gaming, for Steam anyway, check out https://www.protondb.com/ as they list all the games in Steam and how well they work in both the Steam Deck, and in standard Linux.

Plus it's worth noting, often Steam Deck compatibility is rated poor for some games due to the controls, as the Steam Deck uses console like controls and a touch pad, rather than it being performance issues, this is a non issue for regular Linux, as you'll almost certainly have a keyboard and mouse, which is what most PC games expect to see of course.

1: For background, Gabe Newell (aka Mr Valve/Steam) is well known to really hate MS and Windows in general, and apparently really dislikes the direction MS is taking Windows in, and Steams currently reliance on that platform. As such Valve have been trying to move away from Windows for years. They released a Linux native Steam client many years ago now, and also worked on Steam OS based on Arch Linux (they were aiming at basically building a Steam based console, produced by other companies, but it didn't really pan out).

Work continued on Steam OS anyway, with Steam OS 3.0 being released last year to run on the then new Steam Deck, this is basically a portable PC running a tweaked Arch Linux, and includes Proton, a customised version of Wine, the Windows compatibility layer, but focusing on gaming. (There are also people working on a non Steam Deck version of Steam OS 3.0, for regular hardware).

The Steam Deck has been quite popular, and has pushed many developers and publishers in the last 18 months or so, to get their games Steam Deck compatible verified. This compatibility is shown on the games store page in Steam, so lots of effort gong on to get their games listed as Verified and with a big green tick. If the game works on the Steam Deck, then it's almost certainly going to run on a regular Linux install, as long as the hardware is up to the job of course.

Lamborghini's last remaining pure gas guzzlers are all spoken for


Re: Hypocrites

Quote: "but everything else about them is about as eco-unfriendly as you can get."

Such as?

EV construction is essentially the same as a standard ICE, other than the batteries and motors, plus no catalytic converter of course. The batteries can be re-purposed (such as fixed storage) after their usable life in the EV (after typically 10+ years), and eventually recycled once they are no good for fixed storage, and motors can be recycled. Most of the materials can be recovered and then reused. Yes recycling needs to be scaled up, but the tech is already there.

Quote: "Even the act of replacing perfectly good ICE cars with EV's is just plain wrong on so many levels"

What are you talking about? People have always replaced their old cars at some point, and if the old car is still okay, it just goes into the 2nd hand market. It's not like anyone switching to an EV is getting their old ICE cars crushed, instead of part-exing or selling it!

Quote: "and people who buy en EV will replace them every 2-3 years just like ICE, so any eco benefits are never fully realized."

So what? If a specific person already gets a new car every 2-3 years, why would having an EV change that? It's just another car.

Besides, the length of time an individual owner has a car is completely irrelevant to any environmental impact, the impact is based on the total life of the car, not how long any specific owner has that car!


You don't need chargers in all parking spots at a service station, that's just not really a realistic use case.

Yes some, possibly quite a few, high millage people may well need to charge up regularly at public chargers, but that's not going to be everyone who uses the services.

The main use for services is usually for a toilet break, and stretch your legs a bit, not to fuel up.

Microsoft investigating bug in Windows 11 File Explorer that makes the CPU hangry


Re: Details Column width

'Details' view allows you to resize columns just fine.

Are you in 'Content' view instead? Content view is the default you get when searching folders, and does not let you move things around, switch to Details, and you get your re-sizeable columns again.

Microsoft Windows latest: Cortana app out, adverts in


Same here.

Switched to Linux (Mint) back in Jan as my primary OS, and my main home usage is gaming, and so far its been quite a smooth journey.

Have dual boot back into my old Win 10 install, but I'm using it less each week.

Still stuck with Windows on the work laptop, but I don't manage that one, so don't really care!

NASA's electric plane tech is coming in for a late, bumpy landing


Re: Maybe

Pipistrele already have a flight certified all electric trainer with 50 mins range, so it's already possible.

Forget the climate: Steep prices the biggest reason EV sales aren't higher


Re: The ICE will be with us for...

It's only related to new sales, nothing changes for existing cars, so existing ICE cars will still be around for many years to come in the 2nd hand market.

Your next PC should be a desktop – maybe even this Chinese mini machine


Quote: "...otherwise Win10 will rearrange all my carefully arranged windows over to monitor 1 and/or randomly all over the feckin place."

Get a copy of IconShepherd, (other tools are likely available). I've been using it for a few years now. (It's commercial, but free for a single personal computer).

It basically saves and restore icon layouts.

One warning, it does have an auto save mode, which is meant to save whenever it detects an icon is manually moved/added etc. But I disabled it, as a couple of times Windows decided to reset my icons to the default left side of the screen, and when I went to restore all the auto saves (it only keeps so many) were from that boot up with all the icons in the wrong place! It was as if the system somehow thought there were lots of changes happening, so auto saved them all, overwriting my 'good' layout. So I just manually save these days.

The new GPU world order is beginning to take shape


Re: In a high energy price world...

Quote: "The transient spikes on the 4090 are x2 to x3 of it's requirements."

No they are not, you need to update your knowledge. The x2 to x3 was just rumours, supposedly taken from early PSU testing of the 4090 chips, which were apparently mounted on modified 3090 boards early on.

The power delivery for the 4000 cards is new, or at least updated, since the earlier 3000 cards. The actual transients are much less now.

Gamers Nexus (who have a full lab for this type of testing), showed transient spikes being a maximum of 40% over nominal, not the 200% to 300% you're talking about.

Also don't use cheap PSUs if you fitting a top end GPU, as good quality PSU cope with transients just fine.


Re: Waiting for the enevitable

Quote "Along with the excessive power requirements (add a new $300 PSU)'

The increased power was just rumours. If you're doing a like for like swap, the power requirements are basically the same.

e.g. The 3090 Ti was a 450W card, the new top end 4090 is also a 450W card. (Granted a Ti variant in the future might pull more).


Re: In a high energy price world...

Where do you get 700 Watts from?

The new top end RTX 4090 is a 450W card, same as the previous 3090 Ti, but the card runs anywhere from 50% to 100% faster than the earlier card, depending on game. So is much more efficient than the previous generation cards.

Bear in mind these are now on a much newer TSMC node, compared to the previous Samsung node.

Unless you're running uncapped framerates you'll likely pull less power from the wall with the 4000 cards, compared to the 3000s, especially with a more regular mid tear card, rather than the 450W 4090.

OK, Google: Why are you still pointing women at fake abortion clinics?


False advertising

Are there no rules on false advertising in the US?

e.g. You claim to have 'x' available for free, but actually don't. That's false advertising.

Can't some of these places be prosecuted, closed down, banned from advertising?

Intel's 13th-gen CPUs are hot, hungry, loaded with cores


Cherry-picked internal benchmarks

Quote: "To this end, Intel released flurry of cherry-picked internal benchmarks that show its new chips besting the two-year-old 5950X and going toe-to-toe with AMD's SRAM-stacked 5800X-3D in a selection of games and productivity apps."

Also worth mentioning they included the specs for the test environments for these benchmarks linked on the slides, and Intel basically didn't set a level playing field. (Shocked I tell you! Said no one). Copy of the slide here (on reddit).

The new Intel system was sporting fast premium 5600 DDR5 memory.

Whereas they fitted the Ryzen systems (5950X and 5800X3D) with 3200 DDR4 memory.

Lots of people complaining about this, as anyone who knows Zen (at least for 2 & 3), knows you generally fit 3600 memory [*], otherwise you gimp the performance of the CPU. You can easily drop around 5-15% in game FPS by using 3200 RAM instead of 3600 RAM.

Also the fact that Intel focused on the 5950X for gaming benchmarks is just odd! The 5950X is not a gaming CPU, with other chips in the range actually being faster for gaming (even before the 5800X 3D). Basically if you're gaming, you want no more than 8 cores, so that you have a single CPU chiplet. More than 8 cores means two chiplets, and the increased latency between them impacts gaming (although doesn't really impact productivity type workloads, and the game impact depends on the specific game).

The 5800X 3D data is in there, but almost as an afterthought, as they just added a tiny little mark on the chart, rather than a new bar, almost as if they were hoping people wouldn't notice the data! Someone on Reddit actually put the bars back in :-) link

With the nobbled RAM, the 5950X and 5800X3D scores likely need to be at least 5%+ higher than they actually are at the moment. Which means over all, the 5800X3D still leads.

As always, for real data, wait for someone like Hardware Unboxed or Gamers Nexus to get hold of the new Intels (they already have the new Ryzen CPUs tested). As they actually know how to do benchmarks!

* In case anyone doesn't know, running the Infinity fabric frequency at a 1:1 ratio with RAM speed, gives best performance in Zen. So 3600 RAM, as it's double rate, runs at an 1800Mhz, same speed as the Infinity fabric. You can also do 3733 RAM and infinity fabric at 1866Mhz for even better performance, but 3733 RAM is less common and some systems can have stability issues.


Re: Vs AMD

Yes, new Zen 4 looks very interesting, and from what I've read and watched, the actual architecture hasn't changed massively from Zen 3, a few tweaks here and there, some optimisations etc, but most of the gains have come from the new TSMC n5 node. Zen 5 is rumoured to be a more major architecture update, and also should be on TSMCs n3 node. (Zen 5 due 2024).

I'm on AM4 currently. Did consider moving to AM5, but wasn't keen on being an early adopter for AM5, plus I don't really 'need' a big upgrade. Plus of course the cost of at least needing a new motherboard, new DDR5 memory, and the CPU all adds up.

As I mostly game on this PC (I work on a laptop), I instead ordered a 5800X 3D to replace my now oldish 3800X. That should see me through for a good few years, perhaps even long enough to see AM6 coming out! Especially considering the CPU is rarely the bottle neck in gaming.


Re: Countries need to start taxing TDP or some other metric

TDP is already taxed, it's called an electricity bill!

Also TDP has nothing to do with efficiency, TDP is primarily about what cooling you need, efficiency is about the amount of work done, for a given amount of consumed energy.

Each gen of chips is more efficient than the last, that's always been the case, and is unlikely to change any time soon. Yes the TDP has risen, but the work being done for that consumed power has increased to a greater extend, ergo more efficient.

As an example the latest Zen 4 CPUs have ECO modes, in this mode they have a lower TDP setting. A zen 4 in the lowest ECO mode can do around the same amount of work as a Zen 3 CPU, whilst only consuming around 30% of the power. Removing the power restrictions, will increase power consumption of course, but the work done will also increase.


Re: Power vs performance

I've mentioned in a post above, but PCWorld (not the UK retailer), did some ECO testing for the 7950X.

Even in 65W ECO mode, the 7950X still beat the multicore Cinebench scores of both the 5950X and i9-12900K, with these both unrestricted.


Re: Seems an odd choice for 2022

PCWorld (not the UK retailer), did a good comparison of the ECO modes in the new Zen 4 CPUs. link

The findings were basically:

Tests were done with Cinebench R23

Single core, no drop found in single core performance when in 105W or 65W ECO modes. (single core score is also higher than the old 5950X and the i9-12900K).

In Multicore mode. The 7950X ran about 10% slower in 105W mode (than standard mode), and around 25% slower in 65W mode.

But critically, even in 65W ECO mode, the 7950X was still faster than both the 5950X and i9-12900K, with those two having no power limits applied!

For comparison: The Cinebench R23 multithreaded scores were:

i9-12900K (no power limit): 27,283

5950X (no power limit): 25,600

7950X (no power limit): 37,973

7950X (ECO 105): 34,300

7950X (ECO 65): 28,655

Be interesting to see where the i9-13900K lands in all this.

California to try tackling drought with canal-top solar panels


Re: 13GW from four thousand miles of solar panels...

I wondered the same, I watched a video a few months back of physicist Helen Czerski visiting the worlds largest wind turbine, and that was 13MW, but it's a prototype off-shore unit, mounted on shore for testing, so not yet commercially deployed.

I did a quick look up, it's the Haliade-X in Rotterdam port. 260m tall, each blade is 107m long! Seems they expect these to hit 14MW for the production versions.

Looks like they plan to install 100s of these at the Dogger Bank Wind Farm project (along with other similar sized units from different manufacturers), for a total generating capacity of 4.8 GW.

So not even half of the 13GW, and that's going to be the largest offshore windfarm ever built (till the next one of course) :-)

AMD refreshes desktop CPUs with 5nm Ryzen 7000s that can reach 5.7GHz with 16 cores


Expensive? These are cheaper on release than the previous gen was on release, and they are cheaper than current comparable (in performance) Intel parts.

For DDR5, yes, it's expensive, all new gen RAM is expensive when first out. DDR4 was no different when it came out, and DDR5 has been the same. But it will gradually drop over time, especially as more and more products start to use it, to drive up competition and economies of scale etc. Don't want to pay the price, don't be an early adopter.

PCIE4? I assume a typo and you mean PCIe5? PCIe4.0 has been around for years now. You also realise that PCIe is fully backwards and forwards compatible? You can put any PCIe device in there, doesn't need to be a new latest top end GPU. Also faster PCIe is more about supporting things like faster SSDs at the moment, rather than GPUs. PCIe5 SSDs are now hitting the market, and the next GPUs are expected to also be PCIe5 (although would likely only make a difference to top end cards). It would make no sense to release a new CPU that only supported the previous PCIe standards, especially when their is no downside, and PCIe5 hardware is already being released.

Also what do you mean by 'inefficient'? These new CPUs are now the most efficient Zen based CPUs released so far. Yes TDP/power draw has increased a little over previous gen when running flat out, but the work being done for each watt consumed has increased by a greater amount, meaning efficiency has increased over previous AMD CPUs (and was already much better than Intel).

Quoted AMD figures (so still needs to be tested independently) show that a 7000 CPU, configured to the same power draw as the comparable 5000 CPU, performs 49% better. i.e. 49% more work being done, at the same power draw. Some of that will be down to the improved architecture, but a lot will be down to the move to TSMCs n5 node (same as used by Apple for their M* ARM CPUs).

Regarding your last comments on power bills, what are you expecting to be doing with your PC? PCs pull power based on demand. Most workloads are finite, i.e. you are asking the PCs CPU to do a specific job, compile code, process image data, run the NPC AI in a game etc. As these CPUs are much more efficient then earlier Zen CPUs, (and all current Intel CPUs), a new AMD PC would consume less power for a given workload than a previous system (more whilst running, but less overall as it finishes sooner). So overall your power bills would likely go down, not up!

AMD boasts of record sales, says 5nm Zen 4 Ryzen 7000 coming this quarter


Re: On the flip side...

Quote: "(At this point, I suppose I'll wait until Ryzen 7000 has been out for 2-3 months, read the reviews, and then decide whether to risk that.)"

I'd say this is likely a good choice if you're going for a full new build at this time.

The CPUs are almost certainty going to be fine, better node and tweaked architecture, but they are not fundamentally different from Ryzen 5000.

Main issues are likely to be things like BIOS including the low level AGESA from AMD. Plus potentially memory compatibility, which was an issue with early Ryzen, although not so much recently. But AM5 is a new chipset, and new memory architecture so my guess would be a few teething issues to start with, but who knows!

Leaving it a few months from launch, not only gets reviews out, but gives AMD and the board manufacturers time to iron out any BIOS and AGESA issues, driver bugs etc.


Same here.

Happy with my AM4 system for now, although will likely drop in a replacement for my 3800X to extend the life of the system. I'm mostly a gamer on this PC (I have a company laptop for work), so I might go for the 5800X3D rather than the 5950X.

Can't see me switching to AM5 any time soon, as that would mean new CPU, Memory and a Motherboard, and some of those are going to be premium prices for a while yet.

One thing to note if you are buying a new GFX card as well, prices have dropped considerably since the start of the year.

As an example, AMDs 6800 XT were around $1,130 USD back in March, these are now under $700. In the UK you can pick up a Gigabyte Radeon RX 6800 XT Gamin OC 16GB for £649.99 from OCUK.

Still not throw away money of course, but way better than it's been for the last year or so.

I paid for it, that makes it mine. Doesn’t it? No – and it never did


Re: Before computers we used to make stuff that worked

Small world, I had an uncle who work at DB tractors, my Dad worked at David Brown Gears from the 70s till the early 90s.

My Dad started of on the shop floor, later becoming a draftsman, having a hand in designing many of their products through the 80s, into the early 90s.

I can remember as a teenager going on a tour, and part of the tour was a large stress test room, basically a concrete bunker with a large bench in the middle. It had what I was told at the time, a new gearbox for the military, although they wouldn't confirm which branch, being set up ready for testing (it had a large tarpaulin thrown over it for security!). The rumour was it was a Tank gearbox, but Brown's also did gearboxes for the Navy.

We were told they did both longevity testing in that room, i.e. running continuously for days and weeks at a time, then checking the wear afterwards. Plus also destructive testing. You could see shrapnel damage in the walls!

Back on the tractors, I had a relative that had a small farm, and they had a DB tractor that was already many decades old back in the 80s and still ran perfectly fine. It was the first vehicles I ever drove!

You can liquid cool this Linux laptop to let the GPU soar


Re: Stupid and inefficient

What trailblazing performance? If you're just talking about energy efficiency, then sure, but certainly not in overall performance.

Looking at the new M2 based MacBook Pro, the Mac is still overall slower that the best Intel or AMD based laptops in CPU performance, other than a few outlying functions where Apple have implemented some hardware acceleration in their SoC which doesn't exist in the Intel or AMD parts.

The main benefit the Mac has, is it manages what it does while using much less power than the Intel and AMD systems. To put it another way, Intel and AMD burn a lot more energy to get to that faster performance.

Part of this is of course the architecture, but a big chunk is down to Apple using a more efficient TSMC node, specifically the "Enhanced 5-nanometer" N5P process, whilst Intel and AMD are still on older nodes (and AMD being the only other one using TSMC currently).

Be interesting to see how Intels and AMDs newer chips perform, once chips such as AMDs Zen 4 come out in a month or two, which will also be on TSMCs 5nm node.

Intel have also partnered up with TSMC, and are expected to produce some 3nm CPUs, although not till next year some time.


Quote: "This machine can take desktop-class CPUs and GPUs."

Assuming you are talking about the one in the article, then no it can't, these are all mobile parts. CPU and GPU.

As an example, the 3080 Ti laptop version is basically the same core chip as the desktop part (same GPU part number), but it has less cores and runs at a slower speed than the desktop version, to keep the heat down. Typically the laptop models, have around the same performance as one or two models down on the desktop side. i.e. A laptop 3080 Ti like this one, will have around the same performance as a desktop 3070 (not Ti).

Still not bad for gaming, I've got a now quite old 2080 (not Ti or Super) in my desktop, and the laptop 3080Ti just beats it in overall gaming performance.

NanoAvionics satellite pulls out GoPro to take stunning selfie over Earth


Also don't forget it also needs to be out of focus, as no flerfer has ever learnt how to actually use the P900.

Meta now involved in making metalevel standards for the metaverse


The research

Quote: "...researchers [PDF] who recently asked volunteers to work in VR for an entire 40-hour work week saw poor results. Two of the 18 volunteers dropped out entirely and the rest felt frustrated. Some reported significant nausea and sore eyes."

Looking at the PDF, seems the volunteers were given Oculus Quest 2s, which are basically a ~£320 all-in-one system. Essentially a mobile phone type spec device, strapped to your head. Tracking can be a bit lagy, it runs at 120Hz refresh, which is about the bare minimum for comfortable VR, and it doesn't have anywhere near the processing power of a PC. You also have to go via Facebook to use it!

Might have been better off with something like an Index, much better laser based tracking and faster refresh. One issue could be weight though, as the Index is quite heavy (and the cost, plus you also need a PC with the Index).

Intel delivers first discrete Arc desktop GPUs ... in China


Re: So, only in China, eh ?

For what it's worth (pinch of salt and all that), apparently laptops have started shipping in Asian markets with the A730M chipset. which is higher end than the one mentioned in the article, but is a mobile part, not desktop.

Someone in China did some benchmarks, including Timespy and a few games, this seems to show the 730M is a bit faster than a mobile 2080 (now quite old), but not as fast as a mobile 3070 (both standard versions, not Ti or SUPER).

Seems drivers are still very rough, as apparently they couldn't even get Shadow of the Tomb Raider to even run!

Assuming they can fix drivers, looks like the A730M is basically a medium tear 1080p mobile part at most.

There are more powerful parts coming out, including non mobile like the A770, but these still only seem to be around the 3060 Ti type performance (based on spec, not benchmarks).

Looks like Intel are focusing on the mid, rather than high end cards, at least for now.

But I'll wait for someone like Hardware Unboxed or Gamers Nexus to actual give the cards a proper run for their money.

Either way, competition is a good things, and it could benefit a lot of gamers, even if they don't buy Intel, it might help push prices down, especially in the mid tear cards, which is what most gamers actually buy.

Sick of Windows but can't afford a Mac? Consult our cynic's guide to desktop Linux


Re: Not be happy ... to reinstall my OS from scratch every year or two

I used to rebuild my Win 7 system (and before that XP), so often I created custom install media, that had almost everything preselected (region, keyboard, local user account, drive configuration etc etc), plus service packs, various drivers, and a few must-have applications all pre-installed, i.e. slipstreamed in etc.

All my data was on a 2nd drive and on a NAS. So wiping C: wasn't an issue.

I'd just stick the DVD in the drive (later a USB), reboot, and leave it to it. Come back 30 mins later, and a nice clean install on C:

AMD reveals 5nm Ryzen 7000 powered by Zen 4 cores


No idea what the source was atm, but I'd heard that AMD had no plans for big/little type core layouts, as they didn't see what the use case was, and it added additional complexity to things like manufacturing, and the scheduling of tasks. Something that hit Intel, with many games and other tasks actually running slower on their new chips, as game engines etc assumed all cores were equal, this needed patching in the applications to fix.

From what I've seen, the chiplet layout of the new AMD CPUs is the same as previously, i.e. a single IO chiplet (now made by TSMC), and 1 or 2 CPU chiplets depending on which model, with up to 8 cores/16 threads, per chiplet, same architecture as we have now. It's just this time, better IPC, and what looks like a much improved clock speed.

Also the demo CPU that was used for AMDs benchmarks in their presentation, was apparently an early 16/32 core/thread part. So perhaps what will become the new 7950X, assuming they stick to the existing naming convention of course.



Puzzled by this statement: "Su discussed only the RYZEN 7000CPU. There's surely more to come, ..."

So far AMD have never released a '*000' CPU model of Ryzen, and when AMD, or anyone else, refers to the *000 they are typically referencing the entire family, not a specific CPU.

I would expect we'd be seeing things like 7600(X), 7700X, 7900X etc. With likely 6, 8, 12 and 16 cores (and perhaps more, especially if there is a new Threadripper at some point).

AMD claims its GPUs beat Nvidia on performance per dollar


Hardware Unboxed

Hardware Unboxed have been doing a monthly series of price comparisons, for basically the full range of current Nvidia and AMD cards, based against original MSRP, and ongoing trends.

They also include some older cards, based on eBay 2nd hand prices.

Worth watching of you're considering getting one of the current or older gen cards.

link to Mays vid on Tube-of-you


Any reason you didn't go for the 6500XT? i.e. the model that replaced the 5500XT.

There are several 6500XT models for sale on OCUK at under £180 each. Of the 8 listed models, 6 of them are in stock, 2 of those are under £180, two others (also in stock) are under £170.

Demand for GPUs used to mine crypto 'disappearing', says ASUSTeK


Re: Unwarranted optimism

That's not really how markets work.

Low stock, drives prices up, as there is no competition, and demand outstrips supply. Healthy stock means supply outstrips demand, and drives prices down, as there is more competition between OEMs, so they have to adjust price to keep selling.

In March very few cards were in stock, across both AMD and Nvidia, and as an example, the AMD 6800 XTs' were around £1200 in March (lowest price).

A quick look on OC UK just now, and almost all (~95%) of all Nvidia and AMD cards are now in stock.

Currently the same AMD 6800 XTs' are ~£820 (lowest price), so almost a £400 drop in two months, and this is still declining.

For ref, the original MSRP for the 6800 XT, was around £650 for the base models, which of course the card has never been sold at by OEMs. But at least it's heading in the right direction!

Also the closer we get to the launch of the new ranges, due later this year, the cheaper the current gen cards are likely to get.

AMD approaches '30%' x86 CPU market share, thanks to servers 'n' laptops


Re: Epyc

Apparently the Genoa 96 Zen4 cores are due out Q3 this year, so not far off.

There is also a Genoa-X variant later (Q1 2023), which is a repeat of the new Milan-X, so has a large L3 cache (supposedly the same 3D cache process as they did to the 5800X to create the 5800X3D).

Bergamo, is also out Q1 2023, that is up to 128 cores, but these are Zen4c cores, so lower power parts. (They max out at 400W for 128 'c' cores, same 400W as Genoa does for 96 full fat Zen4 cores).


Re: Laptops

When was the last time you used an AMD laptop?

There was a trend for many years where AMD CPUs (and chipsets) were treated as budget only in the Laptop space (plus they didn't really perform as well as Intel back then), and as such all the OEMs paired them up with less than stellar other components, typically with an aim to keep costs down (less and slower memory, cheaper SSD, inefficient power delivery, smaller battery etc etc).

Once Zen/Ryzen came out, from what I understand AMD worked closely with OEMs to basically get them to treat Ryzen as a first class citizen and put the same sort of quality components into the newer laptops, at least in the mid tear upwards. As AMD were making it clear, they were going to be marketing Ryzen as a premium product, (at least with the top end chips).

Enterprise-strength FreeBSD-based TrueNAS releases v13.0


I did think about doing something similar, as mine also has an eSATA on the back, but I'm hitting CPU limitations.

The CPU is an old AMD Turion @ 2.2GHz, which is basically an ultra low power mobile CPU.

As an example I can't really use server side compression (on by default) for my automatic backups (via UrBackup), as it was taking triple the time to run, due to the server CPU running 100%. The system also struggles with other operations as well.

I'm also wanting to run VMs and other services, that I currently run on my main PC, but that means I have to leave the main PC running at times, or shut down the VMs. No way the Turion could cope with that work load. So I want something with a bit more oomph.

I'm considering building an AM4 based system, as I'm planning on doing a CPU upgrade in my current PC anyway, which would mean I'd have a spare Ryzen 3800X.


Thanks for the tips.

Always pros and cons to consider.

I read this article on Arstechnica a while back, as an intro into ZFS.

I've also messed around with ZFS in various incantations via VMs (including earlier versions of TrueNAS/FreeNAS), but just using standard virtual drives, not hardware pass through. But this was just to play around with vdevs, zpools etc.

Expanding existing pools does seem to have restrictions.

It's not recommended as far as I know to mix vdev configurations, such as in your example (i.e 4 disks initially, then add 2 later on), and I think you're limited to having to use the same raid mode (z1, z2 etc) each time for additional vdevs within the same pool, which also of course also restricts the minimum number of drives you can add at a time.

So there are definitely restrictions to consider, much less flexible than other RAID options as you mention.

As a test I created a zpool with 4 x 1TiB drives, as z2, giving me ~1.83TiB available after formatting etc.

I then added a new vdev to the same zpool, this time using 4 x 2TiB (*) drives, again z2, giving me 5.63 TiB available in total after formatting due to both vdevs being combined within the pool.

Personally, as my data is fairly segregated by function, I'd probably just create a new pool with the four (or however many) new drives, and migrate specific data to the new pool, rather than continually growing a single pool. Again pros and cons of course.


* Emulating getting larger size drives at some later date.


Been considering TrueNAS for a new NAS for a while now, tried out the older versions in a VM just for a trial run, will have to give this new version a look.

I've currently got an old NAS running OMV, on a now rather ancient HP micro server, only capacity for 4 disks, the CPU is rather underpowered, and I'm constantly at around 90% full.

I've looked at purpose built NAS systems, but they always seem too limited, or too costly for what you get etc.

So was thinking of just building essentially a regular PC, i.e. case with lots of drive bays, ATX etc, and just stick TrueNAS on it. Although I'll probably move to a 6 disk array minimum, rather than my current 4 disks (limited by the current HP hardware).

Once built, I'll possibly look at repurposing the old system as a pure secondary backup system, that only connects to the primary NAS as needed.

The end of the iPod – last model available 'while supplies last'


Re: I think the original ipod was the last gadget that blew me away

I still have a Zen Vision M somewhere, I rediscovered it about two years ago, and it still booted up and worked!

No idea how good the battery is by this point. It hasn't been actively used since about 2008.

Phishing operation hits NHS email accounts to harvest Microsoft credentials


Ah yes, my company decided to use a 3rd party for security training a couple of years back.

The training was hosted on the 3rd parties URL, and they'd integrated the login to their site with our company IDs. Thus requiring us to log into this 3rd party site, with our company credentials!

None of this was communicated internally.

Out of the blue, we all got emails direct from this 3rd party, asking us to click a link in the email, and log in using our company logins, in order to access the security training!

The security team were apparently inundated by people reporting it as a Phishing attempt (I also reported it).

They ended up sending out an internal email to clarify this wasn't a Phish, was actually real, and please stop reporting it!

12 months later, still using the same 3rd party, they actually sent out an internal email first to warn people to expect the external email.

Someone really should have got the sack, as this was just incompetence by design!

I've no real issue with them using a 3rd party for the training, but they could have managed the notification email internally, and done something like pass though authentication from an internal company URL then redirect to the 3rd party URL, instead of asking people to log in directly to the 3rd party web site!

Apple's return-to-office plan savaged by staff


Re: Options

That's basically the same as my current boss, I'm also an architect these days (done many roles previously).

He's literally said on meetings "I don't care if your on an Xbox for half the day, as long as the work gets done, to an appropriate standard and is on time."

Why the Linux desktop is the best desktop


I'm very much the same.

My personal PC (built myself), is mainly there for gaming and WWW, with occasional light use of docs and spreadsheets.

I already use Libre Office for most office use. I do have a licenced Visio (standalone), but it's rarely used, and I've been playing with yED as a potential replacement (testing on Windows), which seems to cover most of my uses cases, and also has a native Linux version.

I've been watching my Steam news feeds, for my games, and it's been a steady stream of Windows only titles announcing things like 'Now optimised for Steam Deck' etc. Seems most games (that I play) just worked anyway under Proton, with many of the Deck issues being more around UI scaling for the small screen, or control issues, both of which are specific to the Steam Deck, so wouldn't impact my desktop use case.

I've used Linux on and off for years, both personally and professionally. I currently have a Linux micro server acting as a NAS, backup, media streamer etc. Plus a Pihole, so it's not like I'm not used to Linux itself, including SSH and the command prompt (did a lot of AIX UNIX back in the day).

My main worry would be games that insist on working via other launchers, such as EA/Origin, or Ubisoft titles, but I don't buy these often, and typically play them till completed. (I don't do mutiplayer on PC)

Might go dual boot for a while, so I've at least got my current Windows 10 as a fall back!

Volkswagen: Expect chip supply problems until 2024


Re: and just what were they supposed to do?

Toyota quite literally wrote the book on just-in-time (JIT) namely the 'Toyota Production System'.

They understood that you can't just do JIT, without looking at the fragility of the supply chain itself, and accommodating for that. e.g. If you have a back up supplier for some item, make sure the backup supplier isn't in the same earthquake zone as the primary suppler. If it cant be avoided (just one supplier in the world, or they are all in one region of the world, then make sure you keep some stock. Check for single points of failure in the full supply chain, i.e. are multiple separate suppliers in turn depended on a single factory somewhere else etc etc.

Problem with most other car manufacturers, is they got the book, but only seem to have read a few chapters. So implemented JIT, without really any consideration of supply chain fragility.

Or put it another way, they prioritised cost reduction (aka profits), over resilience.

South Yorkshire to test fiber broadband through water pipes


We actually have that on my street.

New estate by Barrets (yes I know!), about 8 years ago now.

They ran ducting (pipes), under the pavements all around the estate, with periodic manhole covers adjacent to the houses, with a smaller duct from each manhole running to each house (only to the outside wall).

There was another run leaving the estate, ending at another larger manhole cover on an adjacent street (i.e an original pavement not part of the new estate), this seems to be adjacent to various on street boxes (i.e. BT cabinet etc).

Initially these just had the telephone cables running through it. (No fibre, only ADSL services initially, we got VDLS/FTTC eventually, but still no FTTH via BT).

Virgin Media turned up about 8 months ago offering their full fat fibre, several houses have opted for them (not me, so far), zero digging up of road or pavements required!

No idea if this was voluntary (unlikely knowing Barrets), I suspect the local planning office have imposed some rules around new builds, to avoid digging roads up etc.

Russian media watchdog bans Google from advertising its services


Re: Fascism 101

I've seen the same in the Steam forums.

Quite a few Dev and Publisher, especially a lot of the smaller indie devs based in the East of Europe, are either based in Ukraine themselves, have friends or family there, or employees. So they are well aware of what's going on on the ground, as they are getting first hand reports.

So some of these Devs and Publishers have been showing their support for Ukraine, such as helping to get people out of Ukraine (providing a room in their house in Poland etc), raising money and so on.

This has been supported by the vast majority of people on Steam, but then you get the occasional one, who clams it's all a lie, that the Ukraine people are being protected by Russia soldiers from the evil Ukrainian Nazi government. etc etc.

Very sad that these people have drunk so much of the Putin cool aid.

Intel debuts Arc discrete GPUs for laptops


Re: "This is sort of the future of rendering as you know"

Quote: "Meanwhile, Nvidia's RTX 3080 draws 320 W of power, has 8704 "stream processors" (damned if I know what that is), and can display any game on a 3840 x 2160 screen without trouble.

I'm left wondering if your piddly little 150W part is good enough to play Minecraft on."

Bear in mind these are the mobile parts. So you need to compare against the mobile 3080, not the desktop version.

Mobile RTX 3080 draws 80W to 150W (depending on configuration and laptop), only has 6144 "stream processors", running at max boost of around 1,710MHz. (The current top 3080 Ti mobile version, pulls around 175W).

The top end Intel A770M draws 120 to 150 watts, and clocks at 1,650MHz.

So at least in clock and power, it's very close to matching nVidia's mobile 3080.

Obviously we don't know how the Intel's new Xe cores compare with Nvidias stream processors yet, but I'm sure we'll find out once places like Hardware Unboxed and Gamers Nexus etc get hold of one or more of these to actually test out.

Intel updates ATX PSU specs, eyes PCIe 5.0 horizon


Re: 600W for a GPU?


In Winter, I rarely need the heating on if I'm gaming. (It's actually on, just the thermostat rarely triggers).

I've even been known to open a window to let some air through, as the rooms hit 25c+ whilst it's zero outside.

In summer I don't game much day time, and even some nights I can't get the room below 30c even with all windows open!

And this is in the UK, so no aircon. Seriously considering getting a portable aircon unit this year, especially as I work from home full time now!