* Posts by PC Paul

198 posts • joined 13 Aug 2007


UK government bows to pressure, agrees to delay NHS Digital grabbing the data of England's GP patients

PC Paul

Re: Matt Hancock to involve patients

to vote for something... poorly defined with lots of room to make it mean whatever they wanted!

Name True, iCloud access false: Exceptional problem locks online storage account, stumps Apple customer service

PC Paul

Re: Similar problem

Dell iDracs still do that: they happily let you set a really long password but only use a certain number of characters from it (20 IIRC).

Proposed US fix for Boeing 737 Max software woes does not address Ethiopian crash scenario, UK pilot union warns

PC Paul

Re: Who had the fish?

I can picture the trim wheels having holes drilled round the edge and Boeing providing a 'trim leverage enhancement rod' (stick) to put into the holes for extra force.

I wouldn't want to turn it 60 times though!

Burn baby burn, plastic inferno! Infosec researchers turn 3D printers into self-immolating suicide machines

PC Paul

Re: the real life physical dangers inherent in attaching all these home appliances to the internet

I'm at home. I have two. They aren't that unusual (or expensive) these days.

Zoom's end-to-end encryption isn't actually end-to-end at all. Good thing the PM isn't using it for Cabinet calls. Oh, for f...

PC Paul

Re: To be clear ...

"It is fully securely encrypted from your machine to our man-in-the-middle server then again from there to your friends machine. We don't see the problem."

You spoke, we didn't listen: Ubiquiti says UniFi routers will beam performance data back to mothership automatically

PC Paul


You think you blocked it...

It's always DNS, especially when you're on holiday with nothing but a phone on GPRS

PC Paul

Re: Many years ago ...

> we only had a production system at that time; my company was too small to afford a development/test server.

I think you'll find you did have a dev/test server, but some fool was running production on it too.

Oi, Queenslander who downloaded 26.8TB in June alone – we see you

PC Paul

Re: Quick maths

Just a switching loop. That's just one box asking for ARP over and over and over and over and...

Bose customers beg for firmware ceasefire after headphones fall victim to another crap update

PC Paul

Re: Criminal Damage

That would be a 'not fit for purpose' thing I suppose, as PCI cards should by definition be compatible with a PCI motherboard.

IR35 blame game: Barclays to halt off-payroll contractors, goes directly to PAYE

PC Paul

10 years?

You think the process of rejoining will start again immediately then?

LightSail 2 successfully unfurls its silvery solar sails, prepares to become a truly solar-powered satellite

PC Paul

Re: Reg needs a new office supplier

It's not being pushed along my mass anyway, says this annoying nerf physics pendant. Which makes the paperclip analogy even more wrong. It's being pushed by momentum transfer. Photons have zero mass, but they do have momentum.

(The y have zero _rest_ mass, to be properly pedantic. Although I'm sure I'll be pedantically obliterated somehow anyway.)

Airbus A350 software bug forces airlines to turn planes off and on every 149 hours

PC Paul

Re: Why is there a choice?

What makes you think the doors would open?

Virgin Media promises speeds of 1Gpbs to 15 million homes – all without full fibre

PC Paul

Passing by...

Around here there is a lot of Virgin DOCSIS cabling laid in by Telewest many years ago - I benefit form it so I'm not complaining. However I've heard of people with new build houses in between two existing cabled properties that Virgin have refused to cable up, offering only slow ADSL instead. There are also whoole developments in fully cabled areas that haven't been added. It's almost like they are just living off the TeleWest investment that they got for £cheap.

I hope these homes aren't counted in the % of homes 'passed by' by fast cabled services, because they aren't passed by choice...

PC Paul

Re: "speeds of 1Gbps"

I have the 200Mbps service and also signed up for a SamKnows white box - one that samples the speed and feeds it back for public viewing and to the ISPs. I don't know whether that helps me get better service (that was clearly my intention ;-) but I just checked the last six months data and apart from one or two week-long dropouts to a mere 45Mbps it's been 190-220 all the way. I'm happy enough, but these price rises are tiresome.

If at first you don't succeed, Fold? Nope. Samsung redesigns bendy screen for fresh launch in September

PC Paul

Re: Another solution...

> Does anyone genuinely want a folding phone?

No. But I do want a clip-on angled mirror so when I'm walking along a quiet path while looking at my phone I have a good enough peripheral view to avoid people, trees, lampposts etc.

Somebody invented it, put up a website only for the iPhone then said 'haha it's a joke' and left it alone. I want one! And for a generic Android!

Canadian woman fined for not holding escalator handrail finally reaches the top after 10 years

PC Paul

Re: Other escalator laws

Corgwn looks more Weslh to me.

Boeing big cheese repeats pledge of 737 Max software updates following fatal crashes

PC Paul

Re: Seafire conversion of Spitfires in the 1940s

There's saying in the Radio control world:

CoG too far forward: model flies badly.

CoG too far backward: model flies once.

Uber won't face criminal charges after its robo-car killed woman crossing street

PC Paul

What? The car can't do emergency braking on it's own?

I find it hard to believe the system is set up so that the car cannot emergency brake on its own, so it waits until it decides it's needed, 1.3 seconds before impact, *then* tells the 'safety driver' 'Hey mate, you need to mash the brakes' - 'Oh. Too late.'

There's no way that was ever going to work in real life, even with an attentive driver.

Erm... what did you say again, dear reader?

PC Paul

Words are hard

I was going to take you to task over using arrogate instead of abrogate but decided to double check myself. It turns out they are both words and you used arrogate quite correctly - I must have learned both meanings assuming they referred to the same word.


So the ESN guy abrogated (repealed, annulled, cancelled)the original shutdown timescale, or would have if it had been part of a formal treaty or the like rather than the vague hope we all knew it was. And then you wisely avoided arrogating (laying claim without justification) a lack of knowledge to him.

Nicely done. I've been told.

Ad watchdog: Amazon 'misleading' over Prime next-day delivery ads

PC Paul

Re: Better than things used to be

A completely made-up Amazon spokesman said: "What we actually mean is 'next day starting from the day before it gets delivered".

Sysadmin cracked military PC’s security by reading the manual

PC Paul

Re: Only cracking I have done is

I'm not sure if that's the same one I was asked to get into. It turned out it had one of those TPM chips in and about the only thing you can do is send it back to the manufacturer or get it to a surface mount rework bench and swap the chip out.

As Apple fixes macOS root password hole, here's what went wrong

PC Paul

It's a shame nobody seems to have posted the immediate 'make yourself safe' step which should be to create a root account with a strong password, avoiding the logic flaw completely.

I don't have a Mac here to test, is there any reason this wouldn't work?

Thou shalt use our drone app, UK.gov to tell quadcopter pilots

PC Paul

It is exactly the same principle as driving really. Drinig at 'appropriate speeds' will often allow you to break the rules completely unpunished because for massive speed to be appropriate you will already be certain nobody else is anywhere around to notice, or that it's something like the M4 with all lanes running at 90MPH so doing 70mph would actually reduce safety.

If you're flying your drone out in the middle of nowhere with no airports/prisons/Motorways nearby then absolutely nobody will care what you do.

PC Paul

> I don't even want to know what would happen if such volatile chemistry ignited in a jet engine...

I suspect: not much.

I think any bit of a jet engine that can be got to by ingestion is either strong enough that it will rapidly completely disassemble the cells and even if they ignite it will be spread over a large enough area to no melt anything, or is capable of handling extreme heat and pressure so literally won't care.

I could be completely wrong, of course. Where are Mythbusters when you need them?

Customer satisfaction is our highest priority… OK, maybe second-highest… or third...

PC Paul

Re: Public wifi?

The first figures I found in a lazy Googling were these:

"Fraud on contactless cards and devices remains low with £2.8 million of losses during 2015, compared to spending of £7.75 billion over the same period. This is equivalent to 3.6p in every £100 spent using contactless technology while fraud on contactless cards and devices accounts for only 0.5 per cent of overall card fraud."

That was from https://www.financialfraudaction.org.uk/fraudfacts16/

I happily use contactless for most small purchases now, even though I am well into cybersecurity and know the risks. Having per-transaction and per-day limits makes a lot of sense and limits the damage that could ever be done.

Ofcom chisels away at BT Openreach's cold, dead hands

PC Paul

Re: Stupid

Our area which was originally fibred up by Telewest, now owed by Virgin.

I know of quite a few places that are surrounded by Virgin cable properties, but can't get it themselves because Virgin are not fitting any new lines. Some of these are small housing developments in the middle of older cabled-up estates, others are individual houses where the original cabled up property was knocked down and rebuilt, but they now cannot have cable put back in.

I have Virgin cable broadband and can't deny it works well for me, but I don't believe they have any real intention of growing their fibre network until competition forces them to.

FYI – There's a legal storm brewing in Cali that threatens to destroy online free speech

PC Paul

Re: Thanks California...

Sounds like "substituted service" is in no way fit for purpose.

If I'm sentence to go to prison can I substitute someone else to go in my place? It's not actually that different.

Angry user demands three site visits to fix email address typos

PC Paul

Re: Easily fixed

10% of your customers give you 90% of the hassle. But you can't always tell which 10% until you're well into the contract.

PC Paul

Re: smartarse AC

When I did SOHO/SME stuff I had a customer who had never realised that ADSL had arrived at his rural location so had sorted his bandwidth needs by getting a phone line and modem for EVERY ONE of his six users.

He actually contacted me to ask if there was a way to spread the traffic across the lines better since some users were much heavier users than others.

Well, yes, but actually I got him onto an industrial strength dual input router and cut it down to just his two best phone lines (they were all a bit flaky and a long way from the exchange, so a bit of redundancy was worth paying for).

More bandwidth and much less monthly cost. He was pleased.

PC Paul

Re: Moving from XP to Win7

I had to track down a dot matrix printer which could provide some very specific emulation options (via DIP switches no less) to keep a customers very expensive optical measurement system running. The software was running on a 486 PC, running DOS, connected through a bespoke ISA card to the equipment.

This was in 2015.

PC Paul

Re: So you didn't fix root cause

Anyone working with Notes, take comfort that they may soon end up migrating to a SharePoint based system and then all your problems will be over!

Oh... wait....

What went wrong at Tesco Bank?

PC Paul

Re: VbV

Not sure if it's different now but last time I used VbV ages ago I had forgotten my password - and the only things I had to provide to do that were already included in the transaction I was trying to verify!

So, no actual verification was being performed over and above that at all.

PC Paul

Re: Santander must also not be hashing passwords

My ex-Abbey National account also needs a full (alphanumeric and customisable) user ID along with a password and a PIN, so that firs your theory.

I do also have it tied to a moneydashboard account too but ISTR that was set up with a one-off security exchange to prove to Santander that I wanted Moneydashboard to have read-only access to my accounts.

TeamViewer denies hack after PCs hijacked, PayPal accounts drained

PC Paul

Re: Bad idea

The Internet of Thugs

Lost containers tell no tales. Time to worry

PC Paul

Chaos monkeys

You need a chaos monkey: https://github.com/Netflix/SimianArmy/wiki

PC Paul

Re: Ah, DevOps

I'm a sysadmin. All I want is to have stuff work, and focus on the interesting bits.

Working with the developers to make sure what they produce and what I need are compatible is the best way to do that by far.

BOFH: If you liked it then you should've put the internet in it

PC Paul

Re: Tracking

We have that system on one of our more secure areas. It actually works fine until there's a fire drill when everybody leaves through the emergency exit, and the system then refuses to let anyone back in because as far as it's concerned they are all in there already. Even worse is if some twazzock put the door control system console inside the secure area.

We were only saved by the fact that someone had been off site for a meeting and came back so everyone could tailgate them in and get back in sync...

Someone please rid me of this turbulent Windows 10 Store

PC Paul

Re: 80% * 80% = 64%

64% ought to be enough for anyone.

Rdio's collapse another nail in the coffin of the 'digital economy'

PC Paul

Re: Something went wrong a long time ago

The answer is right in front of them. Spotify, Deezer, Jango all find that with their short term lower price offers they get a lot more people signing up.

I listen to Deezer while I'm driving to work. I hate all the ads and popups(?) they put into the free service, and when they started their recent offer I took it up. But it isn't worth £10/month to me, maybe £3 tops.

As has been the case since CDs first came out, they ask too much for the market.

Deutsche Bank to axe 'excessively complex' IT, slash 9,000 jobs

PC Paul

It's easy to NOT end up with 45 OS variants and versions.

It just requires management to plan in aside the time and budget to port your applications to the choisen few and to keep them up to date as time goes by.

Oh, wait...

Watch out VW – French prosecutors are pulling on the rubber gloves

PC Paul

Re: an advantage of hierarchy

From what I've seen in bug business it's quite possible the higher levels *deliberately* didn't want to know about it. "Don't tell me how you did it".

LOHAN unleashes 'waiting for the FAA' collector mug

PC Paul

Just Do It!

Why not, after all even if the FAA get upset now everyone involved will be long retired before the next mission after LOHAN at this rate...

El Reg regains atomic keyring capability

PC Paul

Re: Just be careful

If people read all about what it's like over there and still decide to go to substantial trouble to voluntarily go, why not just let them?

We should be concentrating on not letting them come back...

PC Paul

Re: Just be careful

On the other hand it's exactly because it's so dangerous that controlled use of it is effective in helping him.

He's not wrong, but like all things there's a right time and place...

Are you running a Telnet server on Windows? Oh thank God. THANK GOD

PC Paul

Re: More evidence that Microsoft have finally caught up to the 1980's

I regularly use a dual monitor setup with four desktops (for which I use Desktops.exe from Sysinternals - it's simple, free and it works).

It's really useful to be able to do a complete context switch from a sysadmin desktop to a development desktop to a testing desktop to a writing reports desktop in one click, with a pile of windows open on each.

More screen space = better.

Attack of the drones: ‘Nefarious’ private use rising, says top Blighty copper

PC Paul

Re: Blocker

Correct, *but* they do use spread spectrum of various flavours all over the 2.4GHz band, so a broad spectrum wifi jammer would still screw them up. Also the video feed back to the FPV goggles (if they have one) is quite likely to be 5GHz so they could still watch it crash ;-)

Philae healthier: Proud ESA shows off first comet surface pic

PC Paul

Re: "Just how or why the lander stopped bouncing..."

,,,swearing drunkenly through a swanee whistle.

You know it's true.

Top 10 SSDs: Price, performance and capacity

PC Paul

Re: but where are the 2TB Drives

If you want huge but are happy with SATA speeds, go for four 1TB mSATA disks on one of these http://www.addonics.com/products/ad4mspx2.php.

mSATA is a small format but comes in pretty much the full range of SSD sizes and makes. Infact I bought a 60GB mSATA card from Fleabay for £37 with a £12 mSATA to IDE adaptor so I could fit it into an old laptop, makes a huge difference.

I just bought an mSATA to combined USB and SATA adaptor card from Dealextreme for the price of a bag of fish and chips too, which gives me 140MB/s on USB and way more on SATA (haven't measured it yet), things are getting ridiculous if you don't mind mixing and matching a bit.

On my budget I'm aiming to go SSD for boot, programs and temp space with spinning rust for big storage. 95% of the benefits for a fraction of the cost. For now.

Edit: The penalty for running a bit behind the curve: mSATA is already going obsolete, M.2 has taken over. BUT that usually means lots of good clearance deals so if you're a penny pinching non-Luddite like me you could be in luck.

Be nice to the public, PC Plod. Especially if you're trying to stop terrorists

PC Paul

Re: worth noting

At the time of the Dunblane Massacre and the resulting kneejerks I was the secretary of a pistol club. I had 4 semi-auto pistols, two revolvers and two single shot target pistols and up to 5500 rounds of .22LR ammunition in a sturdy cupboard in my garage.

They all had to go, the better ones to a club with much better security (fair enough) and the others were handed in at the local Police station to a startled civvy on the desk. And then the extra .22 ban came in so even the good ones got destroyed.

So now only the criminals have easy access to guns.

But anyway, about handing them in: when you have a Firearms Certificate absolutley everything you do with transferring guns or ammo has to be marked on it. If you buy or sell a gun it has to go on the FAC, to buy ammo you have to show your FAC and convince the gun shop owner that you have space in your allowed quantity to buy it. If you get a surprise inspection (and they do happen), and have anything different to what it says on your FAC all your guns are destroyed (with no compensation), and you could be in serious trouble. NOBODY would ever hand in a gun without getting their FAC stamped and signed, that would be lunacy.



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