* Posts by Kobblestown

44 posts • joined 20 Oct 2015

Bada Bing, bada bork: Windows 10 is not happy, and Microsoft's search engine has something to do with it


"Paint3D is an effing awful regression."

Well, you can uninstall it. And reclaim 16KB if Apps & features is to be believed. So what do you expect from a 16KB software package? OTOH, maybe it's a miracle of software engineering and that would be the justification to silently reinstall it on the next major update. Resistance is futile.

Thinking about it, maybe they should rename it to Pain 3D.

Virtualization juggernaut VMware hits the CPU turbo button for licensing costs


Re: VMware

I am a huge KVM fan (haven't really tried Xen) but I assume VMware has features that are missing from KVM. I am trying to make use of the VMDq feature of intel NICs which is supposed to work out of the box on ESXi under the NetQueue moniker. But I cannot find any information on how to do this. I found some info that Xen 3.3 "will" support this (quite an old post obviously) but I couldn't find anything in the release notes of any Xen version that mentions VMDq.

As much as appreciate it, the FOSS world is not all roses, you know.

10nm woes, CPU supply shortages, competition from AMD... What? Sorry? Intel can't hear you over the cash register going bonkers


Re: Spectre-Meltdown-L1FT-Zombieload-et-al

Another possibility - the mitigations bring performance down so you need more cores just to keep the same level of performance.

Open-source Windows Terminal does the splits: There ain't no party like a multi-pane party


"What would be REALLY nice is if the console allowed ctrl+insert and shift+insert as well, similar to what you get in Cygwin's console."

Hey, I didn't know that. I'm using its Unix heritage which mandates that selection is copying and just middle-click to paste.

Open-source companies gather to gripe: Cloud giants sell our code as a service – and we get the square root of nothing


Re: "he can pay you to develop it. Or pay you for setting it up on premises"

"they develop it themselves and don't make it open, as the license doesn't require it"

Now whose fault is that? Maybe the FSF was on to something? Developing software with BSD/MIT type license is charity work, plain and simple.


Re: Repeat after me..

Open source (and software libre) do not exclude the profit motive. But that would be services one offers around it. Like someone wants a new feature, he can pay you to develop it. Or pay you for setting it up on premises, things like that. After all, companies that provide SaaS with OSS do pay their developers and admins. It's just that there's no artificial scarcity from which to extract exuberant profits.

At least that's how the theory goes. I'm not taking sides in this, just noting.



Truth be told, with GPL you are getting paid - with future improvements others make to the software. Not necessarilly so with other more permissive licenses.

IBM cuts ribbon on quantum computing centre wherein a 53-qubit monster lurks


"Can probably run Crysis"

It both can and cannot. On each of its qbits.

Enjoy the holiday weekend, America? Well-rested? Good. Supermicro server boards can be remotely hijacked


Jesus Fucking Christ guys! Has anyone been able to locate fixed BMC firmware for any board? I couldn't do it for mine (it lists an older version) but then I browsed around and couldn't find it for any board! WTF is going on?!



SM does a good job at acknowledging the flaw but the actual firmware for my Xeon E3-12xx line, X10-variety mobo is still missing. Anyone found updated BMC firmware for such boards?

AMD agrees to cough up $35-a-chip payout over eight-core Bulldozer advertising fiasco


Re: Spin and bullcrap

What about instruction decoder? Should a "core" have one?


Re: Rooting for AMD here

Imagine you have a multithreaded FP-heavy workload. With Bulldozer, if you run it as 4 threads or with 8 threads you'd get roughly similar performance. The 8 thread would probably be slightly faster because it would allow better utilization of the FPUs but OTOH it could thrash the shared L2 cache. Still, going from 4 thread to 8 threads will not result in anything akin to 2x the performance (disregarding Amdahl's law for the time being).

Now, there's always the possibility that for the 4 thread scenario a shitty OS would schedule the threads on every "core" on each of2 modules, rather than on single "core" for each of 4 modules. That would suck on its own although it would provide the 2x boost you'd expect - but has nothing to do with the point that I'm trying to make. Bulldozer was not an 8 core processor for any meaningful definition of the term. And I say this as an AMD fanboy. I hated them because they made me buy Intel CPUs. Only in the last 2 years have a returned to considering AMD for CPUs and I have advised the purchase of several Ryzen systems and built a ThreadRipper for myself. AMD's comeback is even more impressive because of the Bulldozer (and to a large extent the later iteration) fiasco. Part of which is the fake core-ness.


Re: Rooting for AMD here

"The chips did have eight cores, and each core was able to do floating-point arithmetic at full speed."

This is patently not true. Full speed would mean using both FMAC units. When two "cores" use FP operation they effectivelly (i.e. on a rough averge) use only one. Sure, in most cases you won't be hammering both cores with FP workloads but if your workloads are indeed FP heavy, then it performs like every module is single core.

BTW, I personally wouldn't get too worked up about the FPUs. In a comment above I clarify that in my opinion what turns BD in 4-core architecture is the shared instruction decoder. It makes BD modules glorified HyperThreading cores. Only in later designs this was rectified and those can reasonably (but not completely) be considered x2 core.


Re: Advertising

"AMD were completely accurate and precise using the normal meaning of the word core."

I disagree. Not because of the shared FPU but because of the shared instruction decoder. That is what is turning a Bulldozer's module implementation into a glorified HyperThreading core. Later designs with separate instruction decoders could reasonably be considered separate cores. Not Bulldozer.

Canonical adds ZFS on root as experimental install option in Ubuntu


Re: Wow

"Snapshots are not backups, not by a long stretch."

But due to send/receive they make for a great backup solution whereby you send the minimal changes between snapshots to a remote site.


Re: Oracle is a patient predator

"Unwarranted"? I need an actual proof that they don't do that...


Re: @AC - The SFC can kiss my taint...

I use ZFS on Linux but my rationale might be the same - I use ZFS because I value my data and I value my money. The first should go without saying but the second requires some explanation.

I need to be able to use RAID5 - RAID1 doesn't cut it in terms of how many droves I need. This means Btrfs is not an option. I am a huge fan of Btrfs because it offers some features that ZFS doesn't (also the other around of course) but I don't trust its RAID 5/6 implementation. Wheres ZFS is rock solid.

Then there's the caching support - I can configure an SSD as L2ARC cache without much hassle and have my huge (raltively) HDD array perform as well as an SSD after the cache has been warmed up (caveat emptor - on Linux the cache starts from zero after reboot)l. But with ZFS you can configure the cachine behavior per dataset (whether the ARC and/L2ARC cache metadata, metadata + data or none).

I have a friend who runs an 8-disk RAID-Z1 array with a 9th as hot spare and 6 Optane drives for cache. I did set it up for him and it only took like 5 min. Generally, ZFS is very easy to set up and maintain once you've wrapped your head around it. And the flexibility is great. As long as you don't have to shrink your zpool...

BTW, there are many important ZFS feature additions in the pipeline. I think adding a drive to a RAID set is one of them.

God DRAM you! Prices to slide more than 40% in 2019 because chip makers can't forecast


Re: Is this the year

Well, I already switched to SSD for my bulk storage (4x1TB in RAID-Z1). I have bought about 8TB of SSD storage for the last year or so and the prices keep falling.

However, you can combine the best of both worlds (on the HDD side being nothing more than the price, of course) by using ZFS with additional SSD(s) for L2ARC device(s). Once the cache has been warmed up it performs admirably. The only problem is that with ZFS on Linux the cache is empty after reboot but if you boot no more than once a month that's pretty much negligible.

Halleluja! The Second Coming of Windows Subsystem For Linux blesses Insider faithful


Re: But why?

"and swapping between boxen/virtuals is a PITA"

What do you mean "switch". I run several VirtualBox VMs and ssh into them from 'screen' sessions on Cygwin. Which also gives me a decent (if a bit sluggish) Linux command line on Windows too. I can, of course, use WSL to ssh to the VMs but I have problems running 'screen' on it. Then "switching" is simply Ctrl-A+<window number>.

In any case, Cygwin is always the second thing I install on a fresh Windows (the first is Firefox which I then use to download everything else). I really don't understand the lack of love for Cygwin. It's not very efficient but it works very reliably. You can even use it to set up ssh server on your Windows box.

Introducing 'freedom gas' – a bit like the 2003 deep-fried potato variety, only even worse for you


Re: Sleep is a Good Thing(TM)

I was about to write something similar but you beat me to up. The poster above reminds me of a co-student of mine at an oral exam. He complained that he told the professor everything yet he still failed him. I got the same ticket later that day and got an A. I may have known something more than said student thought was "everything"...

The problem is, people like the OP will say - yeah, you told the professor what he wanted to hear. Obviously, regular people on the street know more than any given professor in a University.

Dual carriageway to autobahn: Intel revs up Optane caching memory by doubling PCIe lanes


Optane is a great technology at the right price and for the right purpose. I use 6 Optane drives (4*16 + 2*32 ) as SLOG and L2ARC devices for a ZFS RAID-Z array with 8 disks. I got them at a good price and they work great. Although I don't consider them useful for anything else.

Want to train a dragon? You'll need 500 million files, 730TB of data, 54,000 CPU cores...


Re: Files

I don't know what you're talking about, but I'm pretty sure you're doing it wrong.

When two tribes go to war... Intel, AMD tease new chips at Computex: Your spin-free summary


Well, the server parts should be even twice that. Do the math: 2 chiplets - 72MB max, 8 chiplets - 288MB max. Most people can still remember the times when that was considered a good amount of main memory. Man, that's the amount of main memory the PS3 had!


The Ryzen 9 3900X has 70MB of cache (6MB L2 + 64MB L3)! Holy mother of God!

Now I know what CPU would Jesus run...

How much open source is too much when it's in Microsoft's clutches? Eclipse Foundation boss sounds note of alarm


Re: It's the monocolture of open source that led to this

I, for one, prefer GitLab.


Re: It will

Look son, I run Windows in a virtual machine under Linux KVM. With GPU & NVMe passthrough, although these are just for geek creds.

US minister invokes Maggie Thatcher, says she would have halted Huawei 5G rollout


God, no! They'll corrupt the inmates.

Disco Dingo fever: Ubuntu 19.04 has an infrastructure bent, snappier GNOME and another stupid name


Re: I really like Linux except :]

Well, you can also use the text-based minimalistic installer and select which desktop you want (Caveat emptor - I think it doesn't do EFI boot):


You can also install several desktop environments simultaneously and change them from the login manager.

For a KVM virtual machine there's even a better way - dig down a little deeper in the directories:


And download the kernel and initrd image of the installer. You can pass those to a KVM virtual machine to boot from.

I love the flexibility of this thing. I think that some time ago, if you started the installer kernel over a serial console it would even add the serial console option to the Grub defaults so you could access the virtual machine over serial console right after installation. This doesn't work with 18.04 so you better do this manually before rebooting the newly installed system. But I digress...

Court sees Morissette Meter flip out as Oracle assumes anti-arbitration stance in pay dispute


IANAL but I think forced arbitration is a perversion of justice. Still not siding with Oracle though.

Feeling a bit gassy? Toshiba floats 16TB helium whopper


Re: WTF is 550TB/year workload rating ? limited endurance or something else

"Basically the manufacturers state that if the overall workload is kept below this threshold then the reliability of the drive will be as advertised. Exceeding the WRL rating reduces the reliability conferred."

It's probably just an excuse to not honor the warranty.

Three more data-leaking security holes found in Intel chips as designers swap security for speed


Re: Middle ground

"avoiding leaking timing info generally means every instruction running for the worst-case time."

Not necessarily, IMO. You could have some flags in the cache that certain line was loaded speculatively and the flag is cleared when it's loaded for real. When it's in the cache but has the speculative flag then it's like not being there until the speculation is resolved. Obviously that would require hardware support but I think it's doable. I'm not a CPU designer though.

Oi, Mint 18.1! KEEP UP! Ubuntu LTS love breeds a laggard


Re: Linux Noob question

If your Wi-Fi sits on a mini-PCIe card, as is often the case, I'd rather replace it with something well supported under Linux, like the Intel ones. They go for about 10-20 quid on Amazon. Unfortunately, Wi-Fi is sometimes soldered on the mainboard. There are some pretty small USB WiFi controllers but their usable range might not be that good as opposed to using the antennas inside the laptop.

Microsoft's Blue Screen of Death dead in latest Windows 10 preview


Well, it's a SOD for sure!

Oracle finally targets Java non-payers – six years after plucking Sun


Re: VirtualBox Extensions Pack next?

The page at your last link greets me with a cookie acceptance dialog. Sorry, but I'm no longer clicking any "Agree and proceed" button at Oracle's site...



Just under the article (in the Whitepapers section) the first link is "Understanding the depth of the global ransomware problem". How appropriate.

Edit: Actually, I now see completely different list of whitepapers. Still, in light of the article, Java SE seems not much different from ransomware.

Database admin banned from Oxford Street for upskirt filming


In any case, this a sad testament to what Varna has become.

To make conclusions for a whole city by a single person is pretty shortsighted, to put it mildly.

Disclaimer: I'm from Varna and I аm shortsighted, or rather, myopic - like all Varnians (варненци).

Flying Spaghetti Monster is not God, rules mortal judge


Re: HERESY!!!!

Remember that this is the one religion where nobody has been killed in his name.

Sadly, I guess that's precisely what disqualifies it as religion...

True believers mind-meld FreeBSD with Ubuntu to burn systemd


Ok, but why not run FreeBSD directly? I haven't tried it many years but it always left good impressions. It always felt snappier than Linux. Except for Slackware but I haven't tried that for even longer.

Steve Jobs, MS Office, Israel, and a basic feature Microsoft took 13 years to install


Too expensive? Yeah, sure!

Reminds me of when Microsoft refused to localize Windows for my country saying that it would take them > $1million. And a local dude did it for free by replacing the strings in the binaries. It was only for a specific version of Windows (Win98 IIRC) but I'd never trust MS on such things again.

Little warning: Deleting the wrong files may brick your Linux PC


UEFI, Linux and other things

For UEFI+Linux the indispensable resource is Roderick Smith's page:


As for the firmware, I'd only ask for two things: (1) be entirely accessible via an RS-232 interface and (2) offer a way for you to be in complete control of your machine. Like get rid of the SMM mode that can be used to shaft your machine without any chance of you noticing. And no - running it in a virtual machine (!) as Intel suggests as remedy for the vulns (an SMM vuln can screw even TXT setup), doesn't quite cut it. Because who's controlling the SMM VM...?

Dell computers bundled with backdoor that blurts hardware fingerprint to websites


"the Dell Service Tag pretty much only nails you down to the model"

I'm not a Dell Support Specialist but AFAIK the service tag is unique to each machine. And any third party can obtain the details of said machine but entering it manually in a Web form - I've done that for a couple of my machines.

ARM reveals the Internet of Things security defenses hackers will inevitably learn to evade


TrustZone user-tweakable boards?

Anyone here knows a good and cheap ARM board where the TrustZone feature is available for experiments by the user? Because usually it's initialized by the firmware and once this is done you cannot tamper with it (exploitable vulnerabilities notwithstanding). I need a board where TrustZone is left alone until I say so.

Temperature of Hell drops a few degrees – Microsoft emits SSH-for-Windows source code


Re: Cygwin SSH server

"1) You don't need to install all the cygwin stuff (and maintain it yourself)"

Well, but Cygwin is always the first thing I install on any Windows machine I use. Ok, the second one - I furst install Firefox and then use it to download the Cygwin setup utility. BTW, is there some native Windows application akin to the 'screen' terminal multiplexer?

"3) It should be better integrated with Windows security and accounting - i.e. in many situations you may wanto to know from Windows logs who connected and when, and manage permission through active directory."

Not my use case, really. But just out of curiosity - can Cygwin be set up for LDAP authentication against AD. Anyone here knows? It can be done statically with mkpasswd but it would certainly be better to be always up to date with AD.


Cygwin SSH server

So how is it better than Cygwin's SSH server (apart from the use of CryptoAPI)? I have used it for years to log in to Windows machines. I don't use PowerShell but I assume I can invoke it from a Cygwin shell. Or is that not the case? I'm genuinely asking.


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