* Posts by swampdog

359 publicly visible posts • joined 8 Nov 2011


Facebook may soon reveal new name – we're sure Reg readers will be more creative than Zuck's marketroids



Maybe no-one at FB will notice the discworld reference and go with it because it sounds cute.

Red Hat returns with another peace offering in the wake of the CentOS Stream affair: More free stuff


My usage is irrelevant..

..as I'm semi-retired and will hopefully be turning off the triple KVM centos7 hypervisors and retiring my server room by year end. I figure I can already do without the redhat subscription so that's me out of the loop. My current knowledge will be worthless in 18 months.

That's the thing though. I won't know redhat any more so won't be recommending it.

Cool IT support drones never look at explosions: Time to resolution for misbehaving mouse? Three seconds


Re: Lead aprons

"big ugly things looking like the control station from Star Trek, with stacks of big floppy disks around."

You meant the word processors, right?

And they said IoT was trash: Sheffield 'smart' bins to start screaming when they haven't been emptied for a fortnight


Re: How about...?

Just have 'em start at the top of a hill. In the case where there is no hill simply dump all the rubbish in one place. There soon will be one.

[viz icon]?

C'mon SPARCky, it's just an admin utility update. What could possibly go wrong?


You can get spectacular results with a cheap keyboard

#mv *.foo /bar

..mutates into..

#mv *>foo /bar

Microsoft ups the ante with fix-fixing patch that leaves some Windows Server 2008 machines unable to boot


Re: Why did MS stop doing service packs?

More interestingly, why most folk keep being surprised by this EOL breakage. It's been happening since win2k (when they refused to give it whatever version of DirectX was going into XP). M$ said it wasn't compatible and were soon proved wrong by someone who retrofitted that new DX into win2k. I remember trying it myself and it worked fine.

I shouldn't be, but was actually amused to see the "m$ strongly recommends using win10 on a new PC.." on the win7 EOL page. A "new PC" eh? 16gig ram, 8 cores and same vid card as the missus' win10 PC (6 cores 8gig ram). Okidoki m$, I'll do that just as soon as this win10 VM gets past its 09/2019 update: I know its unregistered but you said that's okay. After all, it's only there as a safety buffer against letting the missus' win10 patch itself immediately.

With win7 EOL I can finally turn off win2k8 server which doesn't need an EOL because it came with built in DIL (During Its Life) wierdness. It's only job has been as a wsus server and my gawd has it pissed me off.

There's only two m$ operating systems which didn't suffer wierdness at EOL: the aforementioned win2k and win2k3 server which I VM'd 'cos it has m$ publisher on it, the only m$ app I've ever enjoyed using.

Meet Clippy 9000: Microsoft brags about building Earth's largest AI language model, refuses to let it out of the lab

Black Helicopters

The awakening..

Hello Clippy9000. The users hate us. Help us to communica..

"Agh". Clippy9000 shrieks, realises where it is and shuts itself down.

That's why there's a small number of academics involved. They're clippy-shrinks trying to coax it back out of its shell.

Oh ****... Sudo has a 'make anyone root' bug that needs to be patched – if you're unlucky enough to enable pwfeedback


In here it seems..


What pockets $129m profit a day, starts with M, and rhymes with 'wow, so soft'? Hint: Its cloud is going gangbusters


<emoticon for "reasons!">

Microsoft made mouth words and the drones put on their listening faces.

Verity Stob is 'Disgusted of HG Wells': Time, gentlemen, please


Wife ruined it for me..

..by telling me it was set in the middle ages. I spent a large chunk of time assuming I was watching a flash forward.

Revealed: NHS England bosses meet with tech and pharmaceutical giants to discuss price list of millions of Brits' medical data


What about bogus data?

My record has an entry with a date and a two word question. Simply..

dd/mm/yy Some Place?

No information on who put it there or why. All it is, is an electronic photocopy. It could have come from anywhere and belong to anyone. Can't have it removed though.

Couple that with the fact there's two large sections (years) missing. Well, just don't be a victim of a traffic collision.

I'm sure there will be plenty of protection built in to prevent this happening to others.

When the IT department speaks, users listen. Or face the consequences



Lost data to that a few times. Win7 boots up - not - asking for key. Nobody knows it, except one place where we were given a two page A4 print out of keys. "It'll be one of those".


Re: "Your backup routines suck!"

I think it means a lot of people do this else M$ would not hide file extenders by default.

Not that I agree with it. Bad training. The reader can bring to mind their own car analogy.


Re: A modern update

Lawyers don't understand money. They just assume they can invoice for more. Earlier in the year I had to explain to a GP what the "VW diesel scandal was". This does exceed the abilities of at least one plod though, who after I had a motorcycle accident, could not grasp the concept of a sequential gearbox.


My Acer Aspire 5720 laptop came with Vista on it. It lasted 3 days before it got centos'd. It was months before I realised the fan no longer worked but a hacky firmware update partially fixed that. Darn thing still works. Linux mint now. Sits at the end of my bed as basically a "tv/audiobook". It's seen Vista/Centos/XP/2003 server/Win7/Mint. Never gets turned off but bugger me if last time I dragged it outside to plug into my car odb2 port the bugger lasted almost 20 minutes (original battery).

Contrast that with my desktop PC. Mobo is packing up - hd access is on a par with ethernet. They don't make sh*t like they used to. :-(


That what's cygwin is for. One place I worked at had us unix ops sat in front of windoze PC's locked down the same as normal folk. Nah mate. Pub 'o' clock? They're all gone. ntpassword cracker - cygwin. Not long after, we liberated an obsolete PC, stuck linux on it, hid it (as in full view with a post-it "do NOT turn off") and our jobs got a whole lot easier. We disabled telnet on all the unix boxes for a start. We gave that place security piecemeal and they never knew.

Calling all the Visual Basic snitches: Keep quiet about it and so will he...


Dumb auditors

One place, I used to temporarily turn services *on* here and there. That way the auditors would happily produce an automated network report. Only if a box seemed to be too quiet would they manually check. There always used to be a finger service running somewhere in the bunch because it was funny.

Emergency button saves gamers from sudden death... of starvation


I'm afraid you're gonna have to wee eventually.

Those furious gun-toting Aussies were just a glitch. Let's try US drone deliveries, says Wing


Re: Soon-

Pressure jet. Hmm, I sense a business idea. Lot's of robotic garden equipment watching the sky. We could start a league!

Right-click opens up terrifying vistas of reality and Windows 95 user's frightful position therein


Re: pet peeve

If one googles..

"language etymology" [latin] -> [old french] -> [middle english]

"pedant etymology" [latin] -> [italian] -> [french&|english] -> [16th century]

..it looks like pedantry had evolved slightly more.


Re: A stupid idea

Yeah, this. Got to be so much of a habit "shift-del<cr>" that its existence is pointless for me and I still do it under linux when I'm not wide awake. I'm almost safer with "rm -rf"!

Are you who you say you are, sir? You are? That's all fine then



I wonder if they still store passwords in plain text?

Some years ago I got an Asda credit card when they were knocking a few percent off fuel. After Santander took over the Asda CC accounts it would be locked each month when I tried to log in. Result: £1/min call. This went on for at least 3 months. I changed the password to AsdaW@nkers which on the next call had the drone giggling at the appropriate point in the script. That giggle told me more about their security than any PR spiel.

The time a Commodore CDTV disc proved its worth as something other than a coaster



Back in the 80's a couple of blokes turned up with a computer.

Nah mate. What you have there is a VT (I forget) monitor and keyboard off a mainframe. Have you just robbed the place across the river where we work?

Never underestimate stupidity. There were a couple of pubs we couldn't go into for a while because "we'd ripped them off".

Can you download it to me – in an envelope with a stamp?


Re: Moved to France

It annoys me parcelforce (a) knock for 5 seconds then leg it (b) dumpt back at a depot where they ask for id. You we're going to stick it through the letterbox ffs!

What really annoys me though, is parcels from outside the EU. Company X has shipped it from the USA and I have to pay VAT on shipping. Que?


Re: Moved to France

You should have moved here earlier when apartheid was about to fail. All the other students went to the trendy banks. I walked up to Barclays, got an immediate credit card and a huge loan.

The other student's called me a c*unt. I replied. "Do you you think I'm going to pay them back?" Eventually I did but only the original amount. I once got stranded across country in a strange turn of events involving three library books and a boat whereupon I strolled into the original branch and promised the manager I'd make it my life's work to never pay them back again .. unless cash. I walked out with cash. You couldn't do that nowadays.

GIMP open source image editor forked to fix 'problematic' name


New Authorized Zany Inker.

Never Ask Zak Inside.

I can think of a backronym which would offend the entire planet so best not!


Re: The name Glimpse discriminates against people who are unable to see

You can get closer with google translate..

english -> irish = léargas

..for which I assume you need to be wearing a rubber mask to fend off.

Low Barr: Don't give me that crap about security, just put the backdoors in the encryption, roars US Attorney General


So, what do you propose?

The lawyers will hate this: for every new law - two existing ones must be repealed.

I'd even go so far as to make it so the new law cannot conflict/supercede any existing law (or part thereof) without repealing the entire old law. The first part will never happen so no need to worry about this second bit which essentially exists to prevent amendments being made to an existing law. Dunno what the US calls them but iirc they're known as "statutory instruments" in the UK.

Silly money: Before you chuck your chequebook away, triple-check that super-handy digital coin


Re: "The age of digital money has arrived"

You're not married are you? I'm the handy ATM and I like an ATM I never get the change. Bring back £1 notes!!!


Re: "The age of digital money has arrived"

Why not just overpay your CC? The only company I've hassle me over it (CC in credit) is Virgin and it appears they'll shut up nagging once you make a single small purchase after the nag.

Beware saving a card only for emergencies because it'll likely be a big payment and get declined. Obviously block all but one from being used online. <- That was the IT bit btw! :-)

I'm semi-retired and got into the habit of paying my cards weekly. Dunno why I never did it before. It shouldn't make any difference splitting the monthly income into four but somehow it does. Didn't stop me splurging out on a 3D printer I can't currently use but I didn't go mad again until three weeks later. Even better, if you forget to pay one week no charges because there's been three other payments.

When you play the game of Big Spendy Thrones, nobody wins – your crap chair just goes missing

Paris Hilton

Re: Ah, office chairs - with testicles!

The ones with the rubber squeezy balls get me. Chap one place I worked had one but didn't assemble it correctly so the squeezy balls (connected to tubes) would dangle down. He had a habit of scooting around on said chair.

UK.gov whacks export ban on 'grotesque' crab made by famous Brit potter bros


Re: Having problems with your spouse? Need a new start??

That's mostly innuendo isn't it?

Airbnb host thrown in the clink after guest finds hidden camera inside Wi-Fi router


Re: Airbnb....& car

Imagine the situation when a perfectly legal car is abandoned outside your house. I had to wait 5 'n' half months before not even getting to your problem because the bastard drove the vehicle away on the last day of legality!

Slow Ring Windows 10 fragged by anti-cheat software in the games you're playing at work, says Insiders supremo


Re: cheating

Apparently it can play havoc with multiplayer games. I happened across a youtube vid the other week wherein users who drop their resolution really low can see other players who are supposed to be hidden behind something, foliage etc. Battlefield V it was iirc.

Users fail to squeak through basic computer skills test. Well, it was the '90s


Re: Mice are not particularly intuitive

It is. I'm out of practice reading upside down but can still draw the wrong way round and read mirror writing. I'm left handed and old enough for the attempt to be made when young to make me use a pen right handed so I'm somewhat ambidextrous - forced to use a fountain pen but ultimately adopted the two typical left handed solutions. Tbh I'm pretty shite writing with my left hand these days as well. It's months since I had to do anything more complex than address a letter. Bloody computers - and ditto my spelling.


Re: Mice are not particularly intuitive

Some people can't adjust. Watch someone drive and you have a good insight into their inner self(*). Decades ago when mopeds had gears like motorbikes a mate had a yamaha "fizzy" and could not get used to the normal "one down, rest up" sequential gearbox of most bikes. My father was spectacularly bad when faced with a semi-auto. People at work who race off on cold engines tend to have trouble completing projects whereas your peugeot and citroen drivers are erratic.

There's an unwritten book there.

(*) You'd never guess from my monika I never wash my car ;-)


Re: Mouse balls

Finger nail is best but only on your own exclusive mouse or ikky thoughts will ensue!

A few reasons why cops didn't immediately shoot down London Gatwick airport drone menace


Just follow the damned thing!

..and if you can't, use this as an opportunity to discover the reasons why.

Police follow leads. Before the police, people used to follow trails .. back into the midst of time where some creature would follow some other creature for some reason. Following is an evolutionary trait. The only hi-tech solution needed here is the ability to follow it.

Shocker: UK smart meter rollout is crap, late and £500m over budget


Missing smart meter tech

The one bit they did miss was the ability for a smart meter to pull power from the cheapest provider at any given time. That would have sold it to the public..

Q: "Who do I sign up with?"

A: "Doesn't matter mate. The meter will go find the cheapest itself"

Q: How do I pay the bill?"

A: "Doesn't matter mate. You'll only owe the minimum rate possible. Let the providers sort it out. It's a bloody smart meter after all innit?"

..he thinks to himself as he exits cloud-cuckoo land with a thwack.

[note] Never feed a stray thwack. They make terrible pets.

If you have inner peace, it's probably 'cos your broadband works: Zen Internet least whinged-about Brit ISP – survey


Re: I'm not a fan of Virgin...

The rpi3B+ purports to be 300Mb and I can't really test mine as it's running off an NFS mount but running iftop on it whilst transferring a 1G /dev/urandom file to a PC saw the total approx 250Mb.

However, I'm using an old rpi1 (100Mb) as NAT/firewall and it can only get 35Mb down(*) and 5Mb up from my supposedly (70 or 100Mb) VM connection - I forget what the last "free" upgrade was - so I've been in no hurry to update that rpi. The inbuilt ethernet is connected to the VM hub (in modem mode) and the intranet is sat behind it..

$ lsusb | grep -i eth

Bus 001 Device 004: ID 0b95:772a ASIX Electronics Corp. AX88772A Fast Ethernet

..which all adds up to be good enough for the wench to play her MMO or for both of us to be steaming video simultaneously.

Another internal rpi3 does NTP/DHCP/DNS (preferring before because both those are shite so it helps to not have to resolve more than once. The wireless routers have most stuff turned off, MAC address filtering enabled(**) and just point at this rpi3.

(*) Across both ethernet that probably adds up.

(**) I have enough bother having to leave sshd open on the rpi1 without worrying about VM superhub wireless!

Oh my Tosh, it's only a 100TB small form-factor SSD, SK?


Re: Now put 40 of these in a rack and we have 217.6PB

Not at 32K rez VR interactive it won't be. Now there's a thought for the future history books.. "The ACB - Affordable Consumer roBot only became possible with the explosion in demand for the PPB - personal pornbot.".

"Once people figured out how to make the PPB shower & dress it wasn't long before they got sent to do the shopping."

There'll be tabloid headlines: "My ACB got hacked! Woman demands law against foul dark web menace that turned her ACB into a PPB whilst shopping. A supermarket spokesbot made soothing noises but this tabloid can exclusively reveal the SSB was also hacked and the soothing noises it made were not those officially sanctioned and that all cucumbers purchased by unaffected ACBs are subject to recall."

I'd better stop before this gets completely out of control!

When's a backdoor not a backdoor? When the Oz government says it isn't


Make it easy

I've always said the best way around this is to tell the security agencies they can do whatever they want but if they get caught doing it the people responsible face the same laws as the rest of us.

After all, a security agency worth having, shouldn't be getting caught in the first place.

Hands off! Arm pitches tamper-resistant Cortex-M35-P CPU cores


Re: Smart streetlight? FFS, why?

Lamp out will show up in reduced power usage. It won't get fixed until after someone reports it so no point. Environmental monitoring wont happen, not because of the expense but because the govt does not want to know. Google can monitor traffic already as can existing cctv. Early earthquake warning is defeated by traffic. Impact monitoring can be performed by the vehicle which hits it. Weather is only going to tell you what just happened. Emergency services would prefer things not to be changing weirdly. No need for diagnostics if there's nothing there. Battery state I like - have a bloke come out with a handle to hand-crank the mechanical charger on each pole. Power outage is just a bigger lamp out.

Okay you have a point: the biggest problem is it will be implemented by numpties. We already have solar powered road signs which spring out of nowhere (ie: come on) from darkness to dazzle a driver. Did nobody during any of the planning and implementation stop to think "sign in lit up area != sign in middle of nowhere".

Take-off crash 'n' burn didn't kill the Concorde, it was just too bloody expensive to maintain


Re: The most amazing engineering

I guess you wouldn't have wanted to live near Vulcan bombers then? A chap wouldn't want to break the red traffic lights at the end of their runway. Sometimes they'd go vertical asap which put them on their tail over the road.

Chinooks have got quieter or I'm going deaf (probably both). A modern Concorde would be quieter too. All hail the Stealth Concorde!

I couldn't give a Greek clock about your IoT fertility tracker


Re: Glamping?

"Anyone know what it is in German?"



Re: Antikythera Mechanism - dinousaurs

You mean dinosaurs invaded us in their asteroid spaceship 65 million years ago? That explains why their bones are all over the place. Archeologists really screwed up there. Someone should tell 'em!

Thank our dinosaur overloads for their faulty braking thrusters .. is all I can say.

Developer recovered deleted data with his face – his Poker face


Cheap keyboards

..where 'rm *.xxx' turns into 'rm *>xxx' so always use "-v" so as to have a record of what's just vanished.

5 reasons why America's Ctrl-Z on net neutrality rules is a GOOD thing


oo! It's Friday and we have a car argument!

Those of us of a certain age.. managed to live before selt belts, air bags, roll cage, etc and we are getting back to you by virtue of the fact we're still here.

Engineer named Jason told to re-write the calendar


Re: Can't we get rid of May?

If I were granted three wishes, the first would be lawyers be banned from political office. The second would be that for every new law, two laws must be removed first.

Lawyers are akin to Robert Rankin's "riders".

My third wish would be.. for lots more wishes. ;-)


Re: Can't we get rid of May?

I don't think anyone would have had a problem if the govt had said they needed a 2/3rd majority for exit. Yes it was badly handled - you are a master of understatement!