* Posts by blokedownthepub

30 posts • joined 23 May 2013

Data hackers are like toilet ninjas. This is not a clean crime, you know


Re: Inquiring minds want to know...

In the UK national lottery 10,000 people pick 1,2,3,4,5,6 every single week


Congrats from 123-Reg! You can now pay us an extra £6 or £12 a year for basically nothing


That's not a "Save" button, ... You have to change them to "Off" and then exit the page without clicking anything else.

That didn't work for me. It let me disable one, but not the other two. I have 5 domains but only 3 appear on that page.

Migrating 5 domains to Gandi. Their domain hosting includes 2 free free mailboxes, which is all I need.


I got the email on 23-Oct. Funnily enough it only mentions 3 of the 5 domains I have, and I've never requested Domain Privacy on any of them

The control panel show those 3 domains with Domain Privacy but will only allow me to switch it off for one of them. I've logged a complaint / support ticket with them.

One domain is due to expire next month, so I'll migrate that this week.

I only use the domains for email, not websites. Can anyone recommend hosting for mail only?


"Any customers not wanting to be migrated can turn Privacy off within their Control Panel in advance. Those who do not read the email will have an extended period of time to request a refund if the service of Domain Ownership Protection is not wanted."

So we're going to get charged by default for something we didn't ask for. It's up to us to make the effort to avoid the charge.

I received the email last week but don't remember anything about being able to opt out.

I thought there were laws about unsolicited goods and services.

BT did this by giving all BT&Sky customers the BT sports channel free, then after a year sent an email saying it would be charged at £5/month, requiring a phone call to opt out of something we didn't ask for.

Azure certifications are awful, Microsoft admits, so it has made new ones


Re: I'm done with this

The ramping-up and the brain-dumping are mutually fulfilling.

When someone with 15 years' experience of Window Server takes the exam without study and scores 670, then spends a year reading the books and watching the videos (at expense) then scores only 430; then a £30 brain dump becomes very attractive.

Just saying - the above is just an example of course...

MS are cheating by making the later exams harder with absurdly detailed questions, so candidates cheat with brain dumps.

It's justified cheating.

That's why I'm done with this.


Re: I'm done with this

An exam will start off easy when first released, then get very difficult over the next year or two.

MS choke off the pass rate as they become more popular by making the questions more obscure. The usual trend in my experience is for the later exams to require detailed knowledge of obscure nooks and crannies of the product.

So if you want an MS cert, do the exam when it's first released.


I'm done with this

I am MCSA in Server 2003 and 2012 R2, but never again.

MS exams start at a reasonable standard early on, then as more people pass they make the exams steadily harder. One trick is to introduce more complex question formats, with potentially hundreds on wrong possible answers - one small mistake with a PowerShell drop-down parameter and you get zero.

I had five attempts at the final 2012 R2 exam. Loads of studying over a year and my scores were getting lower.

First attempt with no study: 670. One year's study and experience later, expecting I'd smash it: 430

It's like narrowly missing a GCSE, then resitting it a year later and finding A-level questions on the paper, but you still only get a GCSE.

I've wasted too much of my life of this.

Google Chrome ad-blocking to begin in February – but what is it going to block?


Download now

Those ads with a big green "Download" button, right next to the thing you really want to download. Source of much of the world's crapware.

Misco UK chops majority of workforce, pulls down shutters


Not surprising

I stopped using them around 2012 when every "in stock, next day" item took three weeks to arrive.

UK PC prices have risen 30% in a year since the EU referendum


Dell prices

In June 2016 I bought 50 medium-spec Dell PCs at £390 each. At the time Dell said they could keep the quote open for only a week.

In November I asked for a further 20 of the same config and was quoted £510.

That's a 30% increase in 6 months.

What were decent affordable PCs are now out of the reach for a state school like us. We just can't buy computers at prices like that. I had to buy inferior machines from another vendor.

Life is... pushing all the right buttons on the wrong remote control


Re: Not Just Us Then

* Midsommer Murders

I must have watched every one (114 @ 2 hours = 9.5 days), but now cannot remember any from the Nettles era, so watch them all again. Mind-numbing bliss.

Microsoft's cringey 'Hey bae <3' recruiter email translated by El Reg


MS have a history of trying to be cool

It's still there - Hosting your Windows 7 Party


BTW - what does <3 mean? I'm 46 and it's not possible to Google it.

Admins in outcry as Microsoft fix borks Group Policy


Re: 2 hours wasted

just seen Mr Humbug's post (upvoted) - that explains it, user security filtering.


2 hours wasted

I think I've just been caught by this, but my symptoms were different.

A GPO that only added mapped drives just stopped applying. It was listed in Group Policy Modelling, but no mention of it (applying or failing) in Group Policy Results.

Solution was to delete and recreate a similar GPO.

Two hours of this morning wasted troubleshooting why mapped drives had disappeared overnight.

Even in remotest Africa, Windows 10 nagware ruins your day: Update burns satellite link cash


I've lost important data

I've lost financial data* due to the crappy power management drivers with Windows 10. My laptop just dies instead of sleeping when I close the lid, corrupting open documents or databases.

Lenovo haven't developed Windows 10 drivers for my model (and there's no reason why they should), the upgrade is forced, and I'm stuck with the MS buggy drivers which kill the power, trashing documents.

My expensive high-spec laptop is now less reliable and useful than it was with Win8.

* (I got it back, thanks to Carbonite).

Microsoft again offers free certification exams to failures


Re: MCP - not so interesting now

I recently completed the MCSA 2012 (having done the MCP and MCSA 2003 many years ago).

The final exam was ridiculous. I had five attempts over 12 months and my scores (until the fifth attempt) were getting lower: 620, 630, 520, a gap of 10 months, then 450. The 450 was especially galling as I'd done a lot of study for it.

The exams were just getting harder, with steadily more emphasis on obscure details of the OS and PS cmdlets. I just passed the fifth attempt with 700.

There's little requirement to understand concepts, it's just about knowing MS products is minute detail.

I'll never do a MS cert again. I intend to stick to vendor-neutral certs from now on.

Disk drive shipment numbers set to spin down


Re: Don't forget the third reason...

The same happened to floppy disks in that late mid 1990s. The prices fell and so did the quality.

Floppies from the 80s cost about £1 each (if you bought in bulk) were still good 20 years later. I needed a few floppies around year 2000 and they were barely use-once quality.

Swedish National Font marches to the sound of whalesong


... and the "i" has serifs when the rest doesn't. Is this common in font designs?

Facebook pays INFINITELY MORE UK corp tax than in 2012


Good for Ireland

Hats off to Ireland. Simply by charging low tax rates, they rake in large amounts of tax from international companies for doing nothing.

The 'fun-nification' of computer education – good idea?


Where are the teachers?

I'm IT Manager in secondary school, and have been for 12 years. I have yet to meet an IT teacher who has a formal background in IT, let alone software development.

It's not the teachers' fault.

The problem is that people with the skills necessary to teach development aren't interested in becoming school teachers. They can make good money by staying where they are. They just isn't any incentive for such people to make the jump and retrain as teachers.

Our IT teacher (bless her) is a good hard-working IT teacher but couldn't code to save her life. She's terrified by the new curriculum emphasising coding.

I've been involved in IT for 25 years now in various capacities, yet couldn't teach it. I tried teacher training years ago and just couldn't hack it, so I stuck to doing IT rather than teaching IT.

Windows 10: One for the suits, right Microsoft? Or so one THOUGHT



Will it be version 6.4.x , though?

Drunkards warned: If you can't walk in a straight line, don't shop online, you fool!


One inebriated night online, I tracked down a couple of old girlfriends from 20 years ago. I'd sobered up a bit and common sense prevailed before I actually contacted them.

Another reason why I don't drink any more.

Listen: WORST EVER customer service call – Comcast is 'very embarrassed'


Re: Just refuse to discuss it

I think he was so calm because he was recording it and knew what was going to do with this.

I've thought about doing this in the past with some call centres, but I read somewhere that it's illegal (in the UK anyway) to record a call without the other person knowing. Chances of being prosecuted in cases like this is very slim though.

I'm surprised that more people don't record calls like this - they're far too common.


Re: BT did this too

I had a painful experience attempting to cancel my BT broadband. Not quite as bad as this, but very long-winded. After the first person had finished their long routine, they passed by to another who would supposedly cancel my contract. The second person just started going through the same script as the first...

Who else have I had terrible call centre experience with...


Philips Whirlpool

Yorkshire Water



Nationwide Building Society

I like it when the recorded message says the call is being recorded for training purposes. It usually means that the operative knows they're being watched.

For balance, just one company who are really do call centres properly: Coventry Building Society.

Middle England's allotments become metric battlefield


Typical Mail Story

I expect that the majority of people on the allotment plots in question don't actually care or know what a pole is.

I'm an allotment holder, and our plots have been measured in sq. m for years. Even the old blokes don't measure plots in feet.

Oh, shoppin’ HELL: I’m in the supermarket of the DAMNED


Re: Waitrose FTW

It was exactly the same when Safeway tried this in the mid 90's. It was quick and easy to scan my own items. We got let through without a rescan the first time. After that we got rescanned every time, despite never having errors, so it became pointless and I gave up with it.


Re: There's a very simple cure

I tried this.

After having trouble with one of these, I went to a manned checkout. Whilst stood at the traditional conveyor belt, a 'helpful' Tesco droid enthused how good the new machines were. Before I could protest (it was late and I was tired) he took my stuff to the machine where he had the same problems I'd had. He went to get help and I walked out to without my stuff.


Depressingly familiar

I’ve worked in IT for 20 years, I enjoy technology, yet I loathe these machines. The article describes my experience with them every time I have to use them.

It wouldn’t be so bad if the stores manned them properly. But that would defeat the point, for them.

IT mercenaries and buy-to-let landlords are my HEROES - here's why


Interesting article

It does mean, however, that as employment demand varies around the country over time and that a large part of the workforce is immobile, then there will be areas with high demand for employment.

For each area of high unemployment due to immobility, there will be another area with employers struggling to find workers. I suppose those employers will have to pay over the going rate to attract staff and they'll become uncompetitive.

The bunker at the end of the world - in Essex


Re: yes

Patrick Allen. He was also in an episode at the end of the first series of The Blackadder, as The Hawk. Very distinctive voice.


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