* Posts by HighTension

54 publicly visible posts • joined 11 Feb 2016


Flying Scotsman attacked by drone


Re: As a former train driver....

Doesn't the sanding equipment on modern trains mitigate the lack of contact point friction somewhat? Or does it only work for acceleration?

I have to say on my line (GN Hertford branch) I've *never* seen any sand coming out of the units on our Class 313s.

Nice to see a rail veteran on here. I was a "spotter" too (Midlands area), my favourites were the Devon/Cornwall Class 50s, from New Street (great sound), Class 45's (had a brilliant visit to Tinsley Depot before they all went), Paired 20s, 56s and 58s at Bescot and watching coal trains and HSTs at Water Orton, and of course the amazingly reliable 37s. Also once saw a 31-hauled nuclear flask train on the Cross-City line at University station. The "new" 60s looked fantastic in the grey+logo departmental livery IMHO.

Really miss the variety of locos we had back then, they all seem to look very US-type these days.

Wow, just nerd-outed myself in a big way!

Building automation systems are so bad IBM hacked one for free


Re: The systems and the service companies...

Ah, but then the landlord will insist it belongs to them, and then alone, and why should the tenant have any say in it? After all, we just sit in the building and supply them with rent....

As for cobbled software... after 3 suppliers' sales teams managed to bamboozle our HR department for a simple personnel management system (ie £10k for something that an NVQ student could have come up with in an hour or two), the powers that be finally let us write our own. Now I get paid the right amount on the right day and don't get phone calls asking why I'm not in 5 days into a holiday in the Med...



The systems and the service companies...

have little understanding of security. I've worked on a BMS (maintained by an external contractor) that had a "log in" pane in the gui with a list of users. If you clicked a username, you got a password prompt. But if you didn't bother clicking a username, you could still access the entire system at a full admin level! It would be possible to turn on all the boilers and thermostats to full blast if you so desired. I've even sure it would be possible to cause physical damage, eg by closing valves on the output of running water pumps.

The contractor wanted to gain remote access by simply plonking a DSL router in front and port-forwarding RDP to the PC. RDP, unencrypted, to a local admin account where the password hint *was* the password. I instead insisted on a VPN (using a decent Draytek router which had the benefit of providing a VoIP phone in the plant room), changing the password and hints and removing the local admin.

When the contractor changed I had to go through all of this again. This one wanted to put in an ISDN dialup line, which I was sure would be make the BMS ownable just by knowing the phone number. Grrr.

Scale-out storage: Proprietary? Commodity? Or both?


GlusterFS is *not* a block-capable product. It's file only. IMHO it's also about the slowest for mixed data. And I'd not trust any really valuable data to anything other than RedHat's supported version (RedHat Storage Server).

For filesystems, you've got many more choices, including BeeGFS, MooseFS, RozoFS and more (OSS or semi-open development model) or Exablox, Isilon, Hitachi, HP StoreAll (proprietary).