* Posts by MattPi

85 publicly visible posts • joined 8 Jul 2015

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

MattPi

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

MattPi

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

MattPi

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

MattPi

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

MattPi

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

MattPi

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.

http://www.pogostick.net/~pnh/ntpasswd/

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

MattPi

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

MattPi

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

MattPi

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.

MattPi

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

MattPi

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

MattPi

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

MattPi

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

MattPi

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?

MattPi

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

MattPi

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

MattPi

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

MattPi

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

MattPi

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?

MattPi

~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

MattPi

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

MattPi

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

MattPi

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 0.0.0.0/0, 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

MattPi

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

MattPi

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

MattPi

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

MattPi

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

MattPi

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

MattPi

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

MattPi

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.

https://www.startech.com/Server-Management/KVM-Switches/USB-Crash-Cart-Adapter~NOTECONS02

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

MattPi

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

MattPi

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

MattPi

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

MattPi

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

MattPi

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.

AI vans are real – but they'll make us suck at driving, warn boffins

MattPi

Skill deterioration

I'm curious how autonomous cars do in the snow. My guess is "what's snow and why can't I see any signs and why do all my control inputs seem sluggish?". This seems like a great idea, really; have a human driver that hasn't really driven in months suddenly have to drive in one of the more challenging situations. How hard can it be?

Blighty's first aircraft carrier in six years is set to take to the seas

MattPi

"Low bridge, everybody down, Low bridge, cause were coming to a town."

( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JxKy1_c6DeM )

Spammy Google Home spouts audio ads without warning – now throw yours in the trash

MattPi

Re: Google needs human customers

"Amazon's customer's are actual people, they buy products and pay for Prime membership, so Amazon doesn't really need to inject ads (but you can always ask for ads if you want)."

That must be why Amazon makes you pay more for a Kindle that doesn't throw adds in all the time or those "Actually Free" apps from their store put up an ad for something random when they start up. The only reason Alexa isn't touting the new Kindles is Amazon didn't have the cojones to try it first.

Chinese pirates are facing lifelong 'social credit' downgrade

MattPi

Dickens

Dickens' books are classics here. Maybe someone can help with something: we can't understand why Oliver Twist, the story of a hardworking orphanage keeper, spends so much time talking about one unappreciative orphan. Thoughts?

The Reg seeks online community manager

MattPi

Is there a relo package from the US?

Mercedes answers autonomous car moral dilemma: Yeah, we'll just run over pedestrians

MattPi

Re: "Engineered like no other car in the world"

"Perhaps a little longer than 10 years. A friend proudly showed off his second-hand 2-door Mercedes by driving me to a philosophy lecture in Launceston (Tasmania) 10 or 11 years ago. The seat belts were automatic. That is, they were motorised and automatically came forward for the driver and passenger to buckle themselves up. Never seen that in any other vehicle."

I'm sure if we're talking about the same thing here, but automatic belts were a fad in the early 90s in the US.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SptbcNjYVtw

Intel Basis fans burned again: Refund checks for scalding smartwatches bounce

MattPi

Re: Western Union?

Western Union is in part the money transfer service, but they're also a normal bank as well. Mortgages, checking accounts, corporate services, etc.

HDMI hooks up with USB-C in cables that reverse, one way

MattPi

Re: Only vaguely USB-C related rant incoming...

"In fact I'd go so far as to state that most of these shops, were essentially only stocking what I'd class as 'legacy' cables, and not one of them was stocking anything that could be used to connect 'modern' devices to another 'modern' device."

Monitors essentially are legacy for the majority of the population. Think about it: how many people (other than the serious desktop user sort) have a desktop in their house? How many of the rest have a monitor that they plug into a laptop? I don't have many friends, but of those very few have a monitor in active service in their house unless they have a 3-5+ year old desktop around. The only monitor I have left in my house is on a shelf, and it's a SGI 1600SW.

Still got a floppy drive? Here's a solution for when 1.44MB isn't enough

MattPi

Re: Embedded systems!

Still loads of old PCs sitting in expensive manufacturing equipment expecting to receive data on a floppy disk. The cleverness of this is that the hardware & software see a standard floppy, not a USB drive or an internal USB connection.

Nice to see someone gets it. The world of computing doesn't end with your laptop, tablet, and oh-so-unfashionable desktop at work.

Captain Piccard's planet-orbiting solar aircraft in warped drive drama

MattPi

Re: "I'm sure that within 10 years we'll see electric airplanes transporting 50 passengers"

"This experiment requires a 2.3-ton plane with the wingspan of an Airbus A380 to transport 2 guys and 633 kilos of lithium batteries at a speed of max 90km/h. During the night it goes slower to save on energy."

Luckily, not all flights require flying non-stop from Japan to Hawaii (4300 miles). Maybe, just maybe, they could swap some of those batteries for cargo/people and still do the 200 miles DC-NYC or London-Paris non-stop.

Lightning strikes: Britain's first F-35B supersonic fighter lands

MattPi

Re: Curious minds want to know

"What about all the British parts on it?

Lift Fan

Quite a bit of air frame

Martin Baker ejection seats

Some of the electronics

We could stuff the US if we wanted"

I heard Martin Baker beat out Lucas Electric for the contract; that's a shame as it would have been the first bit of Lucas stuff that would work when you didn't want it to rather than the other way around.

Smartmobes in spaaace: NASA deploys Android nanosats

MattPi

"I always wonder why Android needs to go in to devices like this? What value does it add compared to Debian or something similar?

The mantra of "Android all the things" seems wrong to me."

In this case, it sounds like the hardware is derived from a smartphone so it makes a lot of sense. Flipping the question, what benefit does Debian provide to offset the many hours it would take to get it running on hardware that may not have drivers, etc.? Odds are the boards came with Android and that's an acceptable option so they went with it.

Devs claim charger uses 'photosynthesis' power battery charger

MattPi

"Assuming 2kwh phone battery capacity they can produce 6kwh/day, from a single plant?

Surely shome mishtake? That sounds very high to me. "

I think you have your units wrong, a phone battery is on the order of 3000mAh, which would take 10-ish W for an hour (.010 kWh) to charge. (3000 mAh * 3.6 V). 2kWh would be like running an 1875W hair dryer for an hour.

Your mother has a smooth forehead, Klingon language lovers roar at Paramount

MattPi

Re: Initially?

"Does the "initially" mean that some child-care agency stepped in, or did the parents come to their senses? I am quite a Lord of the Rings (the books), and Discworld fan, but I didn't name my kids Frodo, Galadriel, Havelock, Carrot, or Glod, nor did I teach them Quenya, Sindarin or Adunaic. I certainly wouldn't dream of teaching those as their first language."

I just read an article about it today, strangely enough. The guy was a linguist (and not actually that much of a Trek fan) and thought it would be interesting to start a child in a constructed language. His wife spoke English to the child, so he's bilingual. Read on if you want to know how it turned out.

http://www.todayifoundout.com/index.php/2012/08/a-man-once-tried-to-raise-his-son-as-a-native-speaker-in-klingon/

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