* Posts by MattPi

100 publicly visible posts • joined 8 Jul 2015


Teens take a million metaverse Ryanair flights in Roblox


Honestly, this isn't *that* different than those long MS Flight Simulator flights I did as a kid on the Amiga. At a point, you kind got the plane going the right direction and it was a lot of watching the world go by.

Also: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Train_Simulator_series

Mars helicopter to try for new speed record on Thursday


If only there were other units

As an American, I have no feel for meters/second. Can we get the velocity expressed in Percentage of maximum velocity of a sheep in a vacuum?

Alien rock causes cosmic disturbance in New Jersey home


To be fair...

This is junk that didn't get swept up into planets.

To be fair, it was swept up *eventually*.

Biden proposes 30% tax on cryptominers' power bills



I think a lot of people are missing the point that all these other "but what about" examples actually have a point to them. Gaming is entertainment, AI provides (dubious) benefits, a regular datacenter presumably provides enough value to customers. As someone above said, when people are re-opening power generation plants just to mine digital snake oil no one benefits other than those at the top of the pyramid.

When it comes to Linux distros, one person's molehill is another's mountain


Re: Snap/Flatpack

I guess it's because some publishers can't be arsed creating DEB and RPM packages.

And the several other minor formats, and making sure the DEBs or nore likely RPMs work on different distros with different library sets.

Snap and Flatpak use a model more along the lines of a Mac app or a container; everything you need for the app is in the bundle. No more, "Well, this distro has glibc 5.8 and we need 5.9 so you have to start upgrading stuff that other packages need to be 5.8". It's not a bad idea in concept. I haven't used either enough to get mad really. From the outside it smells a bit of systemd; yeah it's not the way we've always done it, and it has a issues, but once you start using it works well enough. I don't have the motivation to fight the tide to care about this any more. All these systems are better than Slackware 3.x's install process. :)

Apple pushes first-ever 'rapid' patch – and rapidly screws up


iPhone 11 this morning. Start the patch process looked a minute later and the phone was off-off. Booted back up fine, but seems like the patch crashed the phone.

Microsoft may stop bundling Teams with Office amid antitrust probe threat


Re: Edge

Then look at the other bits like pdf and so on. Since when did the browser become the default for that.

When Adobe made Acrobat Reader such trash that everyone built their own version.

NASA solar satellite burns up over the Sahara desert


Eventually we'll get the Mars Rovers back and they'll be a point of pride in a display somewhere.

Kinda prefer they end up in place as a Planetary Historical Park.

CAN do attitude: How thieves steal cars using network bus


Re: Why

If you're paying so little attention to your driving that you need your lights automated then you shouldn't be on the road.

If you're paying so little attention to your driving that you don't realize the spark needs to be manually advanced, then you shouldn't be on the road.

IBM shrinks z16 and LinuxONE systems into standard rack configs


So if it can replace 36 x 1U servers and use 67% of the space, does that mean this beast is a 24U rack mounted server? Does it come with a free forklift to get it into the rack?

Probably. Based on the spares and tools that came with a p5-595 a long time ago it's likely an optional FRU. Besides, don't you already have a server lift in your DC? :)

The p5-595 process included an IBM engineer that came ahead of time to verify the installation prep like power (redundant 3-phase 60A), floor capacity, and they path from the dock to the DC were all up to snuff. I think the 24" rack was in the neighborhood of a ton (US short, long, or metric I don't recall).

Outage-hit Twitter muddies violent speech policy


Re: I am curious

Exactly this.

While I've had a Twitter account for long time up, I only used it for the last couple years when I started following a bunch of InfoSec, Kubernetes, and general FOSS people. It's somewhat like being at a convention all the time, as you see new ideas and can interact with others with similar interests. That was until Elon went and made a hash of it. Seeing how he treats his people and courts awful people I won't "support" his company with my eyeballs on ads. On rare occasions I'll still click on a twitter link if it's relevant, but the app and daily looking around is done.

It's a shame, it felt like a cool community and a shudder to think what it looks like now.

Outage-ous: Twitter OKs cannabis ads, then goes up in smoke


As we noted then, Twitter's status page didn't show any issues during that outage either, and it displays the same message today as it did yesterday, and on February 9th during the bad migration: "No incidents in the last 180 days."

The team that had access to update the page is probably gone too.

Codebreakers decipher Mary, Queen of Scots' secret letters 436 years after her execution


Re: Modern techniques versus ancient

So what did Walsingham use when he had Mary's letters deciphered contemporaneously?

From the sounds of it, the letters weren't particularly difficult to decode either then or now; it was the discovery that the existed that's news. It reads like, "we were decoding some stuff in an Italian file, but turns out they were previously-unkknown letters from Mary Queen of Scots!"

If I had to guess, these weren't preserved on the English side of the channel since it seems like there isn't much value to the information at the time.

No more free API access, says Twitter: You pay for that data


That's not really a good sales argument after you have been shedding advertisers and users left, right and centre and have only amplified the amount of hate slushing around.

To be fair, most of the shed advertisers and users are left and centre; the users on the right are still there.

What did Unix fans learn from the end of Unix workstations?


Re: Dissenting opinion: Nostalgia is a drug, kids...

Back in the early 90s, a guy at my local Amiga user group had a Canadian CF-100 instrument trainer from 50s in a trailer in his yard. It was essentially a cockpit that you climbed in and they through a blanket over to simulate bad weather night flying. Just listeni to "tower" for headings and watch the beacon heading. He had a picture of the original room-sized computer that ran it, which he replaced with a C64.

Thanks for reminding me of that!

Cyber-snoops broke into US military contractor, stole data, hid for months


Re: If you want to minimize your chances of getting hacked...

"Tell you've never worked in an enterprise environment with saying you've never worked in an enterprise environment." That's how that meme goes, right?

Girls Who Code books 'banned' in some US classrooms


Re: God botherers strike again!

The article says the other party is "Moms For Liberty". What have I missed?

The ever-so-often "name something the opposite of what it is to confuse people" ploy. Mom's for Liberty is anti-mask, anti-vax (ok, that's fair if really dumb), and also pro-book burning. Essentially your boilerplate Conservifascist group in the USA. They espouse the liberty to do things exactly like they like whether you like it or not.

NTT Docomo claims first 5G network with both sub-6 GHz and mmWave


Re: Very good, but one question

What is the use case for such high speed on a mobile phone? How much more YouTube can you consume? If it's tethered it might be useful.

I think you hit it at the end: hotspots, vehicle wifi, mobile work stuff with a laptop and modem. It's not just download, if the mobile network gets quick enough, I can go work in a park or a cabin in the woods to get away if I like.

Asus packs 12-core Intel i7 into a Raspberry Pi-sized board


Re: Because we can?

If you (like I did) see this and thing and say, "What a cool little desktop I could build!" you're right. But this is designed for embedded applications so presumably it'll be embedded in some larger piece of equipment where a heat-sink and 80W PSU may be a drop in the bucket for the overall system weight and power budget.

Lenovo’s folding portable ThinkPad grows to 16.3in, adds keyboard


Re: M1

So you look at this innovative hardware design which surely has enough processing power for many tasks, and get hung up on it not being an M1? Sure, it'd be nice if everything was competing with the M[12] in power and performance, but there's more to computing than that.

Psst … Want to buy a used IBM Selectric? No questions asked


Re: Hot stuff scumbag's admin password

This one has worked for me forever. I think I've used it on Windows 10 and Server 2013, but haven't had to bother with it on 11 or newer copies of server. Maybe I'll spin up a test box and see what happens, lol.


Meet the CrowPi-L – a clever, slightly rustic, Raspberry Pi laptop chassis


These were everywhere in my office and while they're nice for generic came-with-a-desktop keyboards, they're not something I'd call clacky. Then again I'm an IBM Model M fan and have found a reasonable mechanical switch that approximates that so my opinion may be biased.

Attacker snags account details from streaming service Plex


I tried Jellyfin too a little, and it's fine for *me* (clunky, requires some system knowledge like most people reading the comments here have), but I didn't feel like it was ready for the rest of my household to use. I should give it another whirl.

Businesses should dump Windows for the Linux desktop


Re: Gitlab aren't being sensible

That's not the picture I got from the article. You can choose Mac with support, or Linux and you're on your own (but with a culture that there are presumably a lot of internal "community" resources to draw on).

I work somewhere that is very Windows-heavy, with a decent group of Mac people (myself included). The Mac folks have a Slack channel that we help each other along with the actual Mac support people. Linux is not supported for anyone's primary asset, but the folks that are doing Linux in labs and whatnot are very supportive of each other too.


Re: Genuine Question

You might want to check out https://www.freeipa.org/. It covers a lot of AD functionality. You can even set up a trust relationship with AD.

To be honest, I never looked at things like Group Policy with it as we used Ansible on the project. That's not a bad thing, just different. With things like PXE, Ansible-pull, and/or Ansible Tower (upstream AWX) you can create images that configure a box from scratch without much intervention past the boot stage.

I know I'm not convincing anyone here, but it is possible and frankly (to me) does it in a more understandable and logical way than any of the (very dated) AD methods I've tried.

The march of Macs into the enterprise: Demand is on the increase


Re: Workforce Demographics

How the hell do you even image a Mac these days?

(I've only seen the user end, don't have details on the management side)

Where I work, you boot the Mac into recovery mode and reinstall, which registers and notes that the serial number matches a managed device. The management tool then applies all the policies and configures your user account and 2FA. AD integration seems adequate, since you can just kinit a Kerberos ticket and all the SSO stuff works fine too.

I work on an engineering team doing development and infra work, and it's really nice to have similar tools as all our Linux stuff locally. I want to say I'd rather have a Linux desktop (and have run on for many years until recently) but Mac is "good enough" at being Linux-ish and integrates with the larger AD environment easier. I run Linux at home other than a Windows laptop for the family.

AlmaLinux comes to Windows Subsystem for Linux


Re: Serves a roll

Couple things.

WSL2 is a hypervisor now, it's not the translate thing that the old WSL did (where lots of kernel-ish stuff didn't work right. You can make an argument for WSL2 vs. a standard VM (Hyper-V, VirtualBox, etc.), which really boils down to your preference for better integration in WSL2 or the ability to have a 100% Linux VM with no changes. When I ran Windows more, I preferred WSL (1 at the time) for most things; even through it was slow for file access I didn't have to swap files around with rsync or VirtualBox's kinda ropey shared file system.

I haven't dual-booted a system in a very long time. The main problem was the hassle of completely disrupting what I was doing to boot into the other OS. The other was it always seemed like I had to update something so it was never a quick transition. The only way I'd dual boot now is if one system was less than 10% of my use, was for completely different tasks (like games and work or something I guess), and absolutely required the full hardware support. Otherwise, I'd be running a host OS (ideally Linux) and a VMs (ideally not Windows) and just flow between tasks.

Following Torvalds' nudge, Paragon's NTFS driver for Linux is on track for kernel


Re: What's the use case for NTFS?

In my personal use, being able to plug in external disks that move between my partner's Windows laptop and my Linux box. I don't think that's too unusual for big data sets that network (SFTP, etc.) or shares would be cumbersome.

Never underestimate the bandwidth of a station wagon full of tapes hurtling down the highway.

Undebug my heart: Using Cisco's IOS to take down capitalism – accidentally


Re: Yes, I've had a boss like that

That's when they start using Pnnn on the name plates so you don't even know what it's called.

Who needs 'Bliss' in Teams when you can have the real thing on a Bristol bus?


Perhaps kill -SIGBUS 1 would help.

CentOS Stream: 'I was slow on the uptake, but I get what they are doing now,' says Rocky Linux founder


Re: Stability? Bah, Humbug

This word 'stability' that's being bandied around is a little overworked. The fact that an operating system is the vehicle fin which applications run should be a clue to the fact that it should not have a drastic change with each new release.

You should check out RH's Application guide; they have fairly clear policies on what can change between major, minor, and patch releases. https://access.redhat.com/articles/rhel8-abi-compatibility

Stability is what we had with SunOS 4, when each new release only contained minor improvements, which needed no changes to administrative procedures, and no need to recompile applications.

Unless you do something strange, you're not not going to have to recompile your application within major releases of any distro that claims to be "Enterprise", that's the whole point.

Take a lesson from Boeing: If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

Progress: we've heard of it (and are very afraid)

Jackie 'You have no authority here' Weaver: We need more 50-somethings in UK tech


The FOSS world has it's rock stars in places. But mostly is things are way more complex and examples of one person going and writing an entire significant piece of software are much more rare. I remember a story that the old Atari game programmers would come in with an idea for a game and essentially bash it out in a day or two. It's unlikely anything novel that can be done in a day isn't already implemented.

The black screen of BIOS borkage haunts Space Shuttle Discovery's new home


Re: Nice puzzle picture too

The framing is unfortunate, the Columbia is in the area you can just see into on the left top of the picture, a few feet to the left and you'd be able to see it. There's an SR71 on the floor just off the left side of frame too.

EDIT: I'm looking at it the wrong way, that's the main entry on the left, the shuttle would be in a similar area over your left shoulder.

Has Amazon finally gone cuckoo? Bezos' behemoth turns to crowdfunding for Alexa-powered timepiece


Re: Wrong perspective

Indeed, this is to get people looking at Build It.

Death Becomes It: Who put the Blue in the Blue Screen of Death?


~Windows 2000, I stumbled onto a registry (?) change where you could change the colors of the BSOD, which of course I switched to white or red and promptly forgot about. Some time later the inevitable happened; what new devilry is this?

How do you save an ailing sales pitch? Just burn down the client's office with their own whiteboard


Re: Taiwan

You could carry 1200 volts over a standard US "120 volt" extension cord, so long as it didn't exceed its amp rating (typically 15 amps for consumer extension cords with the standard household NEMA plug)

At some point the potential would great enough that the electricity could jump between pieces inside the cable, although 1200V might not be enough for that. I have seen cables labelled with xV / yA, put that's probably more about the end of the plug than anything.

It reminds of a saying I just made up, "Everything is a conductor if the potential is high enough."

Microsoft SolarWinds analysis: Attackers hid inside Windows systems by wearing the skins of legit processes


Re: What?

My guess is because Microsoft has to allow for security processes to be stopped by something on the system, otherwise you couldn't replace Windows Defender pieces with 3rd party tools.

Google told BGP to forget its Euro-cloud – after first writing bad access control lists


Re: Clouds are great!

i don't believe i offered an opinion on the complexity being good or bad, but having worked in less complex enterprise environments than Internet scale cloud services there is no choice but to make it complicated?

how would you relate BGP to an ACL?

In this case, it kinda has to be otherwise you end up with other bigger issues. BGP uses ACLs to describe what routes it'll accept and what it'll advertise. If you don't do that, you get that other major internet issue where someone advertises, and even worse, some ISP accepts it. I can't remember when that last happened, but it was really big and in the last 10 years. Even without big outages, allowing anyone to advertise a route is a bad idea since they could steal or monitor traffic.

This boils down to the "real" hard part, which is maintaining good integration and test environments that match up with production. If you do everything with automation, it's possible. But the people need to have the discipline to never edit prod or at least be very careful to edit all the environments the same way.

Rocky Linux is go: CentOS founder's new project aims to be 100% compatible with Red Hat Enterprise Linux


I think people are overreacting a bit

I'm a centos user both at home and work. People are overreacting some (but not entirely). CentOS stream is just a RHEL-based rolling release distro, very similar to like Red Hat's own AppStream "release" of RHEL8.

I don't see this as much of a deal as some, because CentOS doesn't support previous dot-releases anyway. One day, you're running (say) 8.1, and the next day CentOS 8.2 drops and you're not going to see another security update until you update to 8.2. Only difference here is Stream you see the updates continuously. If you really want to, I guess set up pulp or develop a local mirror system that you have all your prod stuff pull from and only sync after testing. I never got the impression that Centos stream was very "beta", more like Release Candidate.

AWS going AWOL last week is exactly why less is more in cloud server land


Re: Tradeoffs the punters can't control (and don't have the relevant decision making info anyway)

Sums up the cloud in general, shirley?

The Cloud (as a whole) gives you the tools to be as resilient as you want to be, but it sounds like a number of companies (including Amazon Music, which is where I saw issues) didn't architect things well. The loss of US-EAST-1 or any single AZ shouldn't break serious apps. If you're extra serious, you run in AWS and something else (Azure, GCP, etc.) and even your own at something like Switch. Something breaking all that stuff at the same time means there's unlikely to be a working internet for clients to notice your outage.

It's all about how much you want to spend on good IT people.

RasPad 3.0 converts Raspberry Pi 4 to a tablet – be prepared for some quirks


Re: I keep looking at the Raspberry Pi but...

If you're talking about uses that are not hardware tinker related, you're right. The draw of the Pi is for playing with hardware. All the devices you mention don't have well-documented samples for turning pins on and off and lots of clever hardware modules to plug in. Sure, you could probably figure out how to toggle pins on a USB parallel port, but having to hack through Windows or Linux drivers to do it probably is beyond most people (myself included).

Oh dear, what a pity! It seems you can't join the directors at the Zoom meeting today


The deluge

For large numbers of US grade school kids, today is first day back to school. Large numbers of school districts are doing remote-only, and the outage lines up with I believe 8:51AM US EDT. I think I can connect the dots on that one.

Bad news: Your Cisco switch is a fake and an update borked it. Good news: It wasn't designed to spy on you


Re: Too expensive

You know your shit is too expensive when people go to this much trouble to make bootlegs, and still make a profit.

Funny how that works. Since they're not writing all the IOS code, they can charge a lower price and and still make a profit. Unless you think this admittedly interesting hack was harder to write than maintaining all of IOS (and the corporate yacht).

Well bork me sideways: A railway ticket machine lies down for a little Windoze


Re: Train Station?

Trains were a goner in the US for passenger travel as soon as air took hold. The sheer size of the US means cross-country travel takes days. For example, *driving* Brighton to New Caste is around 6 hours (according to Google), where 6 hours from Philadelphia gets me to Pittsburgh, and I haven't even left the commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Then, the US built a tremendous network of roads and auto companies bought up train operators and put them out of business. It's little wonder trains didn't take hold here.

A fine host for a Raspberry Pi: The Register rakes a talon over the NexDock 2


Re: Why some people keep on reinventing the ill-fated Palm Foleo?

You could go with something like this. Not quite as cheap but easier to carry.


Out of Steam? Wine draining away? Ubuntu's 64-bit-only x86 decision is causing migraines


Re: Not as if they're the only ones.

RHEL7.5 onwards is x64 only, no x86

There wasn't a 32-bit install since RHEL7.0. There's a AltArch i386 CentOS spin (among other interesting architectures), but that's it. I'm actually pretty surprise the game people didn't see this coming and find a workaround, but that probably says more about my lack of imagination than tech.

Realistically, we're to the point where my beloved Amigas are: either get an emulator/VM with GPU pass-thru, or build yourself a dedicated "old game" box with Windows 7/XP (or an older version of Linux) and play on that.

(FWIW, KVM VMs on LInux support GPU passthrough, so it's not like you have to get exotic or anything)

Almost 1 in 3 Brits think they lack computer skills to do their jobs well


The other 2/3 aren't savvy enough but don't realize it.

Facebook's send-us-your-nudes service is coming to UK, America


Re: Only someone as disfunctional as Zuk could have come up with this

The Common Naked Photo Interchange Protocol

You can do better than that!

Network Interchange Protocol Subverting Lewd Ill-will Photography.

Landlubber northern council shores up against boat-tipping


Re: Vocabulary

Rural youth in the UK have been known to share the same habit.

I hear Scotland too but with sheep. I have no idea what the sheep do with the money though. (Hey-ooo)

WannaCry-slayer Marcus Hutchins 'built Kronos banking trojan' – FBI


Re: Also Wannacry?

"I've read the indictment, and it looks solid. It would be odd for a dedicated hacker-for-money to stumble over just the solution to another criminal exploit, let alone play 'save-the-day' hero. At least I can't recollect the like."

If I remember one of the interviews, he was investigating it and noticed it tried to contact a domain that didn't exist (as a measure for the malware to detect if there was a transparent proxy on the network watching it). He registered the domain to see what would happen and somewhat accidentally killed off the spread because all the new copies now thought they were being watched and shut down.

That seems like a pretty normal thing to do for someone who enjoys reverse-engineering code, or a way for a dedicated black hat to learn new tricks and keep up with the technology.