* Posts by stephanh

472 publicly visible posts • joined 25 Sep 2014


IBM sits draped over the bar at The Cloud or Bust saloon. In walks Red Hat


That seems a very optimistic take on things.

IBM is by far the dominant partner here. Fat chance for RH corporate culture to make much inroad.

IBM's track record on handling big mergers is not exactly stellar. Statistically speaking most such mergers fail (reduce value).

So enterprises are going to buy RHEL because "nobody got fired for buying IBM"? Well perhaps. If so, be prepared to see Microsoft buy Canonical.

This two-year-old X.org give-me-root hole is so trivial to exploit, you can fit it in a single tweet


Re: Those who fail to learn history are doomed to repeat it

To put this in another way: if your closed-source NVidia driver decides it needs access to /dev/mem (aka the entire system memory), then there is little choice as to have xserver start up as root.

Some drivers are better behaved (the open source ones, typically) but in general startup as root is unfortunately a requirement.


Re: Theo de Raadt of OpenBSD is not happy

The bsd's also kept out of the meltdown/Spectre loop. Sad.



It's a "local privilege escalation"; a non-root user gets root permission.

Bad, but not an immediate disaster for single-user systems. Still a good idea to run updates right away ...

Sysadmin running a Mac fleet? IBM has just thrown you a lifeline


Apple itself doesn't seem very interested in macos and Macs lately. As a result their market share has also slipped. It's iOS where the money is.

Mac enthousiasts pray for some relief on the 30 October event. I suppose this would be a good time to snatch some market share from Windows, if they can show something compelling.



Correction, there is an .xcodeproj file in "enrollment" subdir.

So at least we can build it.


I took actually a look at the GitHub repo, it seems the most pointless "open sourcing" ever.

First of all, you need the $$$ Jamf Pro to do anything with it. Then the build instructions start thus:

"Make sure your build targets all have proper signing certificates assigned in the Build Settings/General tab."

Ok, so *what build tool* would that be, IBM? Code repo has no obvious clues like an Xcode build file.

Grumbling about wobbly Windows 10? Microsoft can't hear you over the clanging cash register


Re: Github

Frankly, I think they will be doing well. The fact that they are now under Microsoft will probably make them acceptable to some more conservative customers.

Break out the jelly and ice cream! Microsoft's Small Basic turns 10


Re: Surprise?

I think they took the Windows Insiders feedback serious.

Alibaba pulls dust covers off its new London cloud presence


O please relax

It's only your *users* data which is being stored there.

GitHub.com freezes up as techies race to fix dead data storage gear


Re: Storage failure forcing the engineers to move files to another box

Yeah I wonder what kind of setup all those people who "cannot deploy" have.

So they don't have a local copy of their git repo? Even though git makes this dead easy? Or they have hardcoded all github references so they cannot deploy from their local repo?

I mean, I understand that they cannot access "Issues" and file "Pull requests", but that must be manageable for a single day.

FWIW, I could just pull and push from my Github repo, so it seems only the front-end is facing issues. Not the actual backend git storage. As already mentioned in the article.


Re: Oh go do one Saishav!

That would require reading the git manpage. Better just whine on Twitter and generally have a day off. Nobody likes a showoff.


Re: The Microsoft Curse?

You should move to gitlab. They never screw up.

(At least it's git, you can still branch and merge locally, right? And pull & push from colleagues.)

Apple to dump Intel CPUs from Macs for Arm – yup, the rumor that just won't die is back


Re: Business as Usual

I imagine the ARM chips would only be used for MacBook Air-like models and the high-end would continue to use x86.


Re: What else can a move to ARM bring ?

Compilers already deal with tons of variants on ARM. Note that the Raspberry Pi has its own peculiar flavor of instruction set which means RPI binaries generally don't work on other ARMs.

ARM is trying to clean up this mess a bit in the 64 bit instruction set, but if Apple wants to add custom instructions then there is little ARM can do. It is not if you can run macos binaries on other oses anyway so who will care?


Re: Rosetta-a-like is absolutely necessary

It may be a simple recompile, but often it won't. I expect something like Photoshop to contain an amount of hand-optimized assembly, for instance.

Even after you have the port building, you need to set up arm machines for testing, in parallel with your x86 infrastructure. All doable but it costs money.

Final build needs to be tested and validated on multiple platforms. These are on-going costs; there is a reason software companies try to limit the number of platforms they support.


Re: Rosetta-a-like is absolutely necessary

Please note that there seems to be a common misperception that LLVM bitcode is portable across architectures - it is not. There is "ARM bitcode" and "x86 bitcode".

Applications will need to be compiled from scratch to work on ARM. Of course Apple has "fat binary" support which will make it possible to ship a single executable for x86 and ARM.

Microsoft points to a golden future where you can make Windows 10 your own


Re: uninstall Edge

Yeah, well, I see your point about UWP, but Microsoft also doesn't allow you to uninstall the Win32 API, so it's kind of consistent in that.

I mean, UWP is, or was at some point, supposed to be *the* future Windows API.


uninstall Edge

You cannot uninstall Edge since UWP apps can be written in JavaScript and then essentially run in an Edge window without browser "chrome".

So Edge is really part of the UWP API.

Chrome 70 flips switch on Progressive Web Apps in Windows 10 – with janky results


Re: Sub Optimal UI?

There are tons of applications now being developed using Electron, which means it also lives in a Chrome window. Even Microsoft does it with vscode. It doesn't seem to bother most people.

Once more with feeling: Windows 10 October 2018 Update inches closer to relaunch


Re: what to do

Apologies, the correct URL is www.kinguin.net. I am not affiliated and there are indeed many other vendors. It's called "grey market" but it's perfectly legal.


what to do

So if you are stuck with Windows, and you have a Home SKU, you may want to get a Pro SKU, OEM versions of which can be bought cheaply through sites such as kenguin.net.

Catches: you need to reinstall Windows from scratch and OEM version gives you no tech support.

But now you can postpone updates until, presumably, they are really ready.

Of course this means you are effectively paying MS for their incompetence but that is SOP in IT.


Re: I'm just wondering

I think most companies are on the "Semi-annual channel" (SAC) and will only upgrade once the proles, I mean Windows Home users, have fully beta-tested the new Windows.

Microsoft Windows 10 October update giving HP users BSOD


I don't love Apple,but if MS proceeds as currently, Apple can probably see some recovery on their PC market share.


Re: Again

Indeed. Given the egg already over the face, why not take a few weeks now to iron out the bugs? But no, let's rush another update.

Does Google make hardware just so nobody buys it?


Re: Sponsored content

I have stated in these fora that I considered the Surface Go overpriced.

I must admit that this Google thing leaves me a bit speechless. No buy.


Re: Giffen good?

This is indeed the standard example, but later economists have argued that people did actually move away from potatoes as their price increased.

The statistics seem inconclusive so we are still unsure if this was actually a Giffen good. And if such a thing exists.

Microsoft yanks the document-destroying Windows 10 October 2018 Update


Re: Apple user here again...

Another macos user here, who vividly recalls left hanging for a week for a fix for the bash shellshock exploit, while Ubuntu got the fix the same day.

But yeah, so far no user data eaten.


windows home == beta tester

The internal Q&A has been mostly fired, the Insider program clearly cannot find its own bug reports.

Windows Professional, Enterprise & Education can postpone updates, Windows Home users not really. All Windows Home users are now beta testers for the expensive SKUs.

First it came for your desktop, now Windows 10 1809 is coming for your Things


Re: Is anyone actually using this?

I understand it is indeed widely used, and so was its predecessor Windows CE.

Obviously it doesn't include the Windows desktop so typically you don't notice as an end user.

On the seventh anniversary of Steve Jobs' death, we give you 7 times he served humanity and acted as an example to others


An exhaustive list of really nice people who built a multi-billion business:


On the third day of Windows Microsoft gave to me: A file-munching run of DELTREE


What do you expect when you fire the testers?

Microsoft fired most of their Windows testers back in 2014. Since then it has been relying on "Windows Insider" for lot of testing, i.e. the fanboys. Code quality has been due south ever since, who could have imagined.

On Thurrott the conclusion was that the issue was actually reported by the Insiders but apparently swamped by "feature requests" for all kinds of silly stuff.


Windows 10 1809: Now arriving on a desktop near you (if you want it)


Re: pseudo tty's

So now we don't need winpty anymore?

Microsoft resurfaces Surface kit alongside Windows 10 update


Re: Redmond's techno ear muffs will set you back $350

Wireless headphones with active noise cancelling from a reputable brand like Sony start around £100. These will probably suffice for Skype and Cortana.


$350 headphones?

The wireless connectors must be made from gold, then.

Microsoft liberates ancient MS-DOS source from the museum and sticks it in GitHub


Re: Wake me up

"When MS open sources anything of relevance no strings attached."

Visual Studio Code?


Apparently now ranked among the most popular editors.


/ vs. \

This is fairly well documented. MS-DOS 2.0 added a bunch of Unix-like features, most importantly directories. However / was already in use to start command-line options. Which was, by the way, compatible with CP/M and various IBM OSes, so it is not as if Microsoft invented use of / for options.

So ultimately it was decided to use \ rather than Unix / as a directory separator. HOWEVER DOS and Windows have always supported / as an alternative directory separator in the API, so usually / works equally well in a context where a command-line option cannot appear (i.e. open file dialog).

(For the true pedantic: using / instead of \ will NOT work with the \\?\ path prefix.)


Re: To some MSDOS was an major leap forward.

My understanding is that there were custom Xenix versions for special 8086/80186 machines which had an additional (external) MMU added. However, if you wanted to run Xenix on a "standard" PC you needed a 286 at the minimum (for the built-in MMU)

US govt concedes that you can indeed f**k Nazis online: Domain-name swear ban lifted


Re: Optimistic

"Does he really think a 15 year old boy doesn't already know all those words?"

Yes, and he was shocked after the boy explained them to him.

Microsoft adds Windows module support to PowerShell Core while Amazon unleashes it on Lambda


Re: How come they can't learn bash, perl ?

I like bash for quick once-off one-liners but would recommend against it for production scripts. The quoting rules are hell, see all the bash scripts which break if a path contains a space.

Suggest Python instead, it has a great abstraction of common operations across Posix and windows.

Dust off that old Pentium, Linux fans: It's Elive


Re: Ah, Enlightenment...

I recall it was a buggy, crashtastic mess, but with some "cool" screenshots. Fine if you didn't actually have to use it for anything, I suppose.

Seems others have noticed the bugginess too.


This one best left on the compost heap of history.

Visual Studio gains some go-faster stripes for Android emulation


Last time I checked, edlin also originated in Microsoft's hell pits...


Re: IDEs, WTF?


I use the allfold plugin in Vim for that, indeed mostly for logfiles.




After 15 years of working as a C++ developer, I still haven't encountered a code change I couldn't do in Vim.

In contrast, IDEs... First they take a minute to load, then they show a postage stamp-sized code window, engulfed with button bars and tabs and tabs containing button bars (which should be a shootable UI offence). Then you need to fill in pages of red tape about your "project" before it lets you do anything. My "project" is to fix the bug in this file, you stupid thing! And then, perhaps, it lets you use it built-in editor with all the functionality of Notepad (except for the speed) to make your code change. If it hasn't crashed by now.

Blech. No thanks. I am not sure what problem IDEs try to solve but I am glad I don't have it.

Samsung Galaxy Note 9: A steep price to pay


Re: the square root of 2n + 1


√ is on the Android Gboard keyboard.

Space, the final Trump-tier: America to beam up $8bn for Space Force


Re: "There's no reason for the Air Force to exist"

I think they still need something UNDERGROUND, the "Mole Force" perhaps?

ZX Spectrum Vega+ blows a FUSE: It runs open-source emulator



IANAL, but I don't see how bundling a GPL emulator with some emulated games does not require the entire thing to be GPLed. This doesn't seem "mere aggregation" to me; the bundled games don't do squat without the GPL-ed code.


Frankly 4/10 seems vastly overrated.

I would immediately award a base score of 0 for the promised but missing games, then start subtracting points for the shoddy case and everything else which doesn't work.

I think we should be looking in the negative 200-300 range here.

For all the excitement, Pie may be Android's most minimal makeover yet – thankfully


Re: Clipboard

I recall doing something similar with OLE on Windows 3.1, embedding a widget from another app in your program.