* Posts by AndrewDu

137 publicly visible posts • joined 11 Feb 2014


My hoard of obsolete hardware might be useful… one day


I have several PCI-bus Token Ring adaptors.

Oh, and one of those hub things that the "hermaphroditic" connectors go into.

They were only known by their IBM four-digit machine number iirc, and I am too lazy to go up to the loft and see what it was. But those readers of a similar vintage may remember...

That scary old system with 'do not touch' on it? Your boss very much wants you to touch it. Now what do you do?



In the basement of a large factory I used to work in, I once came across an old Compaq Deskpro 386 (yes!) running with no case on, and no monitor, attached to various serial cables and such. I asked the person showing me round what it was for and whether it mattered, and how long it had been sitting there hoovering up the considerable dust in the (very dirty) operational area where it was.


Later, I found that this was no more and no less than the truth.

Europe to push new laws to access encrypted apps data


You don't seem to understand how the EU works.

The EU is not a democracy; in fact it's deliberately designed to bypass and nullify democracy.

The Commission is the only body that can propose laws, and if it does, the Parliament can do no more than discuss, object, and (slightly) delay.

This is not a Parliament in the normally understood meaning of the word, it's just a bit of window-dressing; what the Commission wants, the Commission gets.

Cheap, flimsy, breakable and replaceable – yup, Ikea, you'll be right at home in the IoT world


"Very few houses are going to invest in extra networking gear just to be able to turn a light on and off with an app when you are five feet from the switch anyway."


So why would you EVER want to turn a light on or off with an app when you are five feet away from the switch?

Fools and their money...

Dishwasher has directory traversal bug


Re: Bewildered. (That's grown-up speak for "wtf")

"probably some implementation stupids when it comes to switching provider "

You are so right. The stupid is, that if you change provider, the smart meter doesn't work any more. End of.

Apparently they forgot that bit when designing them, probably because the implementation phase goes back to nationalised industries, at which time you couldn't change provider because there was only one.

More Brits' IDs stolen than ever before


"34 per cent increase in under 21s"

What you mean all those youngsters who scoff at us old Pro's who insist on keeping our account details to ourselves?

Colour me suprised.

Germany to Facebook, Twitter: We are *this* close to fining you €50m unless you delete fake news within 24 hours


Cynic_999 posted while I was writing this...but I'll leave it up anyway, since it can't be said too often...

At what point does "hate speech" morph into "fake news" and then into "anything tptb disagree with" and then into "anything that the people in charge don't want talked about"?

This is a very dangerous road to start down; pretty soon we're back to just hearing and knowing what the state and its satraps want us to hear and know.

Trump, Brexit, and Cambridge Analytica – not quite the dystopia you're looking for


Is there any limit to the number of excuses the Left will try to come up with, to explain the fact that not everyone agrees with them?

Smart meter firm EDMI asked UK for £7m to change a single component


They came and installed these things in half the houses in our village, despite being told that no mobile phone ever works there. The guys doing the work just said "Yeah, we know, dumb management eh, but we're being paid to do this so we're going to do it".

What a waste of money.

Global IPv4 address drought: Seriously, we're done now. We're done


"give every one of those people a hundred addresses and still have some 231 trillion addresses spare."

That's only true if you keep away from structuring those numbers.

As soon as you (e.g.) start incorporating MAC addresses into the IP address (just to pick a completely random example...!) then the number of available addresses starts to shrink rather quickly.-

Bruce Schneier: The US government is coming for YOUR code, techies


Re: Well, maybe we should not put software in everything

my trade-off would be to read the Sat Nav and drive the damn car myself. You'll need to stay awake, sober, and alert anyway (oh yes you will, whatever they say) so you may as well.

GDPR: Do not resist! Unless you want a visit from the data police


The joke about all this is that while private companies risk £20m fines or whatever, the government (any government) will just carry on doing exactly as it pleases.

Call your bank to make some trivial query about your account and you get the ninth degree of security nonsense, but if the NHS wants to hand over your data to Crapita, that's just fine and dandy, they don't even need to tell you.

Data protection works for them against you, but not the other way around.

Big blues: IBM's remote-worker crackdown is company-wide, including its engineers


Re: Improving morale? Eventually

Actually Trump was complaining loudly about this sort of thing all through his campaign, and promises to "do something" about it. Whether he can or not, (I think not, personally), remains to be seen. It's probably one of the main reasons he was elected.

But don't let that get in the way of your knee-jerk.

Huawei could rescue Amazon's Alexa from the smart home


So, a gadget that listens to everything that's said in your car, and sends it all back to Big Brother at its own discretion.

What could possibly go wrong?

Just the thing for the fathers of teenage daughters, I suppose, but really. Blimey. And people will PAY for this?

Speeding jet of Siberian liquid hot Magma getting speedier, satellites find


Odd that nobody yet has blamed this on global warming...it won't be long, I'm sure.

Why don't people secure their IoT gadgets? 'It's not my problem'


Why, in the name of all that's holy, would anyone in their right mind ever, EVER need an internet-connected toothbrush?

Beancounter nicks $5m from bosses, blows $1m on fantasy babe Kate Upton's mobe game


Re: What a loser

"season tickets for the San Francisco 49ers football and Sacramento Kings"

What a waster.

Now, if he'd bought season tickets for the Sharks or the Kings, one could possibly sympathise...


" as a foreign national, will "almost certainly" be deported"

What a good idea. Remind me again why we can't do that?

90 per cent of the UK's NHS is STILL relying on Windows XP


Re: Maybe they should consider going over to Linux?

" a highly developed, relatively very secure and stable OS"

Hmm, well, maybe so.

But it would frighten the pants off any new start staff who would then need a lot of training and hand-holding before they could do even the simplest thing. Whereas anybody off the street kinda knows how to work Windows - which is what they think "computers" are, anyway.

Before you sneer, go check out a few of your own users, and imagine the panics.

Information on smart meters? Yep. They're great. That works, right? – UK.gov


Re: Umm....

"They can even tell which channel you're watching,"

No need to use the Smart Meter for that, the Smart TV is already sending back that information. Plus anything you say in the room it's in, of course...

Facebook, Microsoft, Twitter and YouTube team to ID terror content


Thin end of wedge...

"There is no place for content that promotes terrorism on our hosted consumer services"

"There is no place for content that promotes hate speech"

"There is no place for content that promotes hate"

"There is no place for content that promotes extreme views"

"There is no place for content that promotes views we don't like"

"There is no place in society for people with views we disagree with"

Job done.

Veritas lays off a third of its sales staff – merry Christmas, everyone!



Always the same I'm afraid.

Do next year's budgets in October; discover the business doesn't have the overhead cover next year to support the existing workforce; quick exercise on who's going and who's staying; hand out the P45's - then "Oh look, it's the week before Christmas - just like it was last year".

It sucks, but at least those left do have a business next year; if you don't do this when you need to, everyone goes.

Lenovo: If you value your server, block Microsoft's November security update


Re: Go ahead

Every month?

Just looking at the file and SQL servers at my site - both virtualised under Hyper-V - uptime shows 408 days right now. And before you ask, the reboot before that was planned.

Every month, indeed.

Stay out of my server room!


Rent a skip. Have it dropped in the car park. Tell those responsible they have one week to clear all the rubbish out of the Comms Room, after which it will all be in said skip.

Now the hard part - DO IT.

Once they see their stuff in the skip, you'll get action alright.

FYI Apple fans – iCloud slurps your call histories


Sounds like another good reason to install Signal.

Fire alarm sparked data centre meltdown emergency


Re: Strange Coincidence

Wired fuses? Srsly?

Ye Gods.

Facebook chokes off car insurance slurp because – get this – it has privacy concerns


Re: Just read Twitter then ...

And of course none of that could possibly be a fantasy.

Definitely not.

Windows 10 debuts Blue QR Code of Death – and why malware will love it


Re: Wait while I find my camera

"surely they would not have a web page that just said "err=unknown_driver_fail please uninstall the driver for Unknown Device" and nothing else...?"

Oh, yes they would!

Reminds me of the old IBM error messages that used to say something like "Error 10042fcd occurred" and you thought oh goodie that's nice and specific, the big blue book will tell me what's wrong. So you got out the big blue book and looked at the list of error codes, and the numbers jumped from 10042fc7 to 10042fe0 or something like that. Gah! Foiled again, curse you, Red Baron!

Microsoft ends OEM sales of Windows 7 Pro and Windows 8.1


Re: When the time comes

"Linux will have missed it's best opportunity to date in attracting serious desktop usage."

Just like it's missed all the others, you mean?

Ex-soldier slapped with sex offender order after flouting private browsing mode ban


How will he know if they're under 18?

Some under-16's look about 30 if you believe the Home Office.

Phishing fraudsters pose as UK bank social media types


You'd go and get help about your online banking from Facebook or Twitter?

For some reason the sympathy meter is stuck on zero.

And for our next trick, says Google while literally wheeling out a humongous tablet ...


Why would anyone want an expensive VC-type device? In the real world we're all getting rid of these things and saving a fortune thereby. If we need a video conference we just fire up Skype or Swyx or MiCollab or any one of dozens of others, straight off the desktop. Simples.

Today the web was broken by countless hacked devices – your 60-second summary


Re: Maybe..

"The default password cannot be changed"

Dear God.

It's almost like the manufacturers (or somebody...) wanted that device to be insecure and remotely compromisable.

OK, I'll take off my tinfoil hat now.

Sysadmin flees asbestos scare with disk drive, blank pay cheques, angry builders in pursuit


Re: Windows NT

Probably the same version where, if you wanted to set up a cluster, the disks all had to be the same make and model, the same size, the same speed, and the same firmware level.

Such, such were the joys.

Openreach split could damage broadband investment, says BT's chief exec


BT certainly have a problem with their pension scheme, as do almost all large companies (and many small ones too).

But this is not down to their own mismanagement - it's due to the grasping hands of G. Brown esq., and then after that to the endless ZIRP and QE that's been foisted on us by the Govt. and the Bank of England. Nobody can make investments pay in this environment, which is why they are all falling over each other to renege on their promises to their employees. This will not end well.

Basic income after automation? That’s not how capitalism works


Re: Make robots pay tax

I can't believe that it's 2016 and there are still people who believe the State has money of its own.

*shakes head sadly and moves on*

Apple's car is driving nowhere


" I've jailbroken my iCar, so I can drive it when I'm pissed"

I would have thought that if a car were autonomous, "driving" it while pissed would be pretty much a basic requirement. Otherwise what's the point.

Citizens don't trust UK.GOV with their data


How many civil servants does it take to change a lightbulb?

One: he holds it still while the rest of the world revolves around him.

I'll get my coat...

'Geek gene' denied: If you find computer science hard, it's your fault (or your teacher's)


"nearly everyone is capable of succeeding in the computer science curriculum if they work at it."

Nearly everyone is capable of succeeding in the computer science curriculum if they're interested and they work at it.


This, I suspect, is what lies behind the much-vaunted gender mismatch in the IT business. Yeah, I'm pandering to stereotypes. So sue me.

City of Moscow to ditch 600k Exchange and Outlook licences


"An IT integrator told the outlet it was the first big win for New Cloud's My Office product"

State organisation goes with State-approved software supplier? This counts as a "win"?

Half! a! billion! Yahoo! email! accounts! raided! by! 'state! hackers!'


BT have just written to a lot of their account holders (maybe all of them) point out just this, and asking them to change their passwords.

Uncle Sam rules on self-driving cars


Re: In the UK...


How old are you, exactly?

Tesla to stop killing drivers: Software update beamed to leccy cars


So they fixed that particular problem.

Anyone betting on how many other particular problems might exist, which they haven't yet come across?

AI is hard.

VW Dieselgate engineer sings like a canary: Entire design team was in on it – not just a few bad apples, allegedly


Re: Hypocrites in DoJ

"Only foreigners are a problem."

Ain't that the truth.

See also under BP.


I wonder what would have happened if this were an American company?

My guess - nothing.

Elon Musk says SpaceX Falcon 9 fireball investigation is 'biggest challenge yet'


The more Facebook data-slurping spy satellites get destroyed at launch, the better, as far as I am concerned.

Airbag bug forces GM to recall 4.3m vehicles – but eh, how about those self-driving cars, huh?


Question - why does something so fundamentally safety-critical as an airbag even have ANY electronics in its operation at all?

Have we completely lost sight of the need to make things simple?

You should install smart meters even if they're dumb, says flack


Re: Downvoted

PV arrays should not be installed on new build houses in the UK because they're useless at our latitudes.

It doesn't matter how cheap the panels themselves get, the cost of the inverter gear, the problems of cleanliness and maintenance, and the hopelessly intermittent nature of the output (sunshine at night, anybody? Or any time between November and February?) means they will never be anything except a cost overall - though of course a nice little earner for the rich people in big houses who already installed them before the government woke up and cut the feed-in tarriffs.

Windows Update borks PowerShell – Microsoft won't fix it for a week


Re: Embarrassing @OldCixer

That's because there are not many Aunt Minnie's running it.


So the fix for the borked fix is to remove just that one patch?

How's that going to work when they're only releasing one gigantic fuzzball patch every month anyway?

It's becoming a joke isn't it; except that it's not a joke because some of us have to live with the consequences.