* Posts by rcxb

562 posts • joined 22 Aug 2018


Specs leak of 5.7GHz AMD Ryzen 7000 chips with double the L2 cache


Re: But where are the "cheap" chips?

Fab demand is extremely high, so now is not the time to shop for a deal. Also, inflation is hitting prices everywhere, so £100 could well be the new normal for budget CPUs.

Microsoft extends life of cloud servers from four to six years


Re: Power

you need to pay to cool that 3MWH/yr also

With traditional refrigeration air conditioning systems, that only adds 1/3 to the power budget. But big cloud providers don't use traditional air conditioning, they run at high temperatures (so often need to HEAT-UP outside air they pull in), and often use evaporative cooling instead of refrigeration where needed.

See: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JZUX3n2yAzY


Re: Power

maybe Microsofts spreadsheet needs to factor in this week's meter readings ....

Servers are expensive... around the price of an automobile. Their power consumption is relatively moderate these days. The purchase price of the server can far outstrip the cost of electricity to operate it, particularly if you can choose to locate your data centre somewhere with inexpensive electricity and moderate cooling needs.

Dell estimates 3MWH/yr on a heavy workload for their fully kitted-out R740 servers:

* https://corporate.delltechnologies.com/content/dam/digitalassets/active/en/unauth/data-sheets/products/servers/Full_LCA_Dell_R740.pdf

Even using the UK average of £0.28 per kWh, that would be just £840/yr. At 5 years, that's £4200. You'll find that a fully populated new server costs considerably more than that, and that's not even accounting for the much lower electrical rate Microsoft pays. Locating close to cheap electricity is a trick Aluminum smelters have been doing for decades.

Why the end of Optane is bad news for all IT


Re: Database

No amount of caching can speed up that final step.

Sure it can. Your RAID controller with the battery backup just needs to lie to your database, telling it the write was completed to disk the moment it went into the cache.

Somewhere along the way you have to decide that a certain storage method is reliable enough, and that could be battery backed RAM (cache) just as easily as the SSDs its connected to.

You need to decide your trade-off. Others might decide that writing to a single RAID array isn't reliable enough, and force the database to wait until the write has been replicated to a second, remote storage array.


Optane was not necessary

You never needed Optane memory for that use case. In the old days, you could just design-in a battery backup system, and use RAM as your persistent storage.

These days, you can just go out and buy NVDIMMs off the shelf. It's a use case fully supported by common server boards. You don't hear about it because there just isn't a killer app where a non-trivial number of workloads see real benefits from it.

* https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NVDIMM

* https://www.dell.com/support/manuals/en-us/poweredge-r740/nvdimm-n_ug_pub/introduction


Re: Insane

the ability to access small files with magnitude lower latency than regular SSDs.

File systems already use un-allocated RAM space as cache. So you're talking about a very specialized case of lots of access to very small files (that can't be converted into larger files, like fields in a database) and also so huge a number of these files that there isn't enough RAM to cache them for higher performance access.

Google: We had to shut down a datacenter to save it during London’s heatwave


Re: Heat island

It's a difficult problem, since airports need to be as close as possible to big cities, but cities don't want to be anywhere near airports...

Not difficult, really. Put the entry point in the city and have a tram every minute that moves people a few miles to the actual terminal near the runway.

Alternately, I'd certainly enjoy seeing a kilometers-long autowalk moving at 100km/h.

Alibaba sued for selling a 3D printer that overheated, caught fire, and killed a man


Re: Klipper or Marlin won't help here

A typical budget extension cord is not fit to power anything other than a lamp, phone charger or laptop but there's absolutely nothing stopping you plugging in something that will draw the full circuit current and -- literally -- melting wiring or sockets.

Actually, the earthing pin usually prevents it. Extension cords that can't handle the full 15A of a standard NEMA 5-15R are two-pole, no earth affairs (NEMA 1-15R) so you can't plug-in MOST high-power devices, which usually has/needs that third pin.

Those terrible extension cords aren't very common. Just a hold-over from the pre-1960 electrical standards, and only available in fairly short lengths. Still purchased these days as a cheap option for some low power needs like Christmas lights, but far less common a sight than the (orange) 3-pin extension cords which are quite safe, and rendered pretty uncommon by the rise of power strips/surge protectors (starting in 1970).

"its only 110 volts"

Also a hold-over from the 1960s. The US grid has been 120V for many decades.


Re: Possibility of irony?

I miss my dad every other day, every third dream

You should have followed John Cleese's advice and had him stuffed:


OVHcloud datacenter fire last year possibly due to water leak


Re: Interesting article marred by dreadful time formatting

Military timing is all good, but a : every now and then wouldn't hurt.

$ rsync -a "10:00" remote:/tmp/

The source and destination cannot both be remote.

rsync error: syntax or usage error (code 1) at main.c(1275) [Receiver=3.1.2]

Tough news for Apple as EU makes USB-C common charging port for most electronic devices


Re: Micro USB

Both of you need to actually read the article. It makes it rather clear, early on:

"Now it's no more a Memorandum of Understanding and having all the leeway that [Apple] had during the past 10 years – basically to not abide by this MoU"


Re: Micro USB

micro-usb should never have left the drawing board

MicroUSB was considerably more durable than MiniUSB. That's really the only metric to use. What other data+power connector type do you think we should have used? Somebody needed to create it first.

Original killer PC spreadsheet Lotus 1-2-3 now runs on Linux natively


What about sc?

Linux has had a text-mode spreadsheet forever... sc (spreadsheet calculator). Currently available in Fedora-36 repos.

Wonder what Lotus 1-2-3 has that couldn't have been added to sc more easily...

The world has a plastics shortage, and PC makers may be responding with a little greenwashing


Re: The world has plenty of plastic

makes people who don't live in those places, complacent.

There's a corollary, however, that people who engage in token actions are less likely to take substantive actions to actually resolve the problem.

Reducing plastic pollution in the oceans can be most effectively done by spending money at the source of most of the plastic, not trying to prevent that last 1% from relative non-polluters.


Re: The world has plenty of plastic

I wonder who DOES dump all of that plastic?

As of 2019, "Asia accounts for 81% of global plastic inputs to the ocean." * They frequently lack the sanitation infrastructure the western world has, as well as environmental laws. Dumping trash into rivers, where it gets flushed out to sea, is not just an occasional happening but the standard method of disposal.

* source: ourworldindata.org/ocean-plastics

Google bestows improved device management tools, authentication options on Chrome OS admins


It doesn't need to be all in the browser. I've put together Linux systems with locked-down Kiosk desktops, and also had no problems at all.

One of those icons is a web browser, but native programs are better where available. Much less bandwidth used, and performs very well on even old slow hardware. Still a locked-down, unprivileged user experience with no way to install programs, or even run anything they haven't been given access to.

Of course it's easier to get started when someone did the work for you, but more difficult when you find you need to do something more than the lowest-common-denominator use-case.

What you need to know about Microsoft Windows 11: It will run Android apps


"And if you do bring your own commerce engine, you keep 100 per cent of your revenue, we keep zero."

24th June, 2021. Keep the date. This is the kind of promise that will get slowly watered down a bit at a time, until nobody makes a fuss when it is reversed entirely. At least, assuming they're successful in driving more developers to use their "Store". This sounds like Microsoft from the old days, promising vendors everything, then doing the opposite.

Boffins promise protection and perfect performance with new ZeRØ, No-FAT memory safety techniques



ZeRØ provides protection with zero measured performance loss – hence the name.

Wi nøt trei a høliday in Sweden this yër?

Price-capped broadband on hold for New York State after judge rules telcos would 'suffer unrecoverable losses'


Arbitrary number

How did the state come with the $15 as the magic number? Would $20/mo have bankrupted low-income families? $25? Did the state make any attempt to determine the costs of providing the service, before naming a figure?

Fastly 'fesses up to breaking the internet with an 'an undiscovered software bug' triggered by a customer


I'd want to see a second layer of protection against misbehavior, not just trying to make their software perfect and bug-free.

G7 nations aim for global 15 per cent tax on big tech and bin digital services taxes


Re: Too soft too weak

It's true. They can sell the products at lower margins instead of marking it up the entire 15%, which they will do if competition forces them to keep prices down.

Tech scammer who fooled Cisco, Microsoft and Lenovo out of millions jailed for more than seven years


Re: Skills

You develop a higher tolerance for such hassles when you know you're getting good money out of it. Would you go sit in an office of cubicles all day if no-one was paying you to do so?

FYI: Today's computer chips are so advanced, they are more 'mercurial' than precise – and here's the proof


Higher datacenter temperatures contributing?

One has to wonder if the sauna-like temperatures Google and Facebook are increasingly running their datacenters at, is contributing to the increased rate of CPU-core glitches.

They may be monitoring CPU temperatures to ensure they don't exceed the spec sheet maximums, but any real-world device doesn't have a vertical cliff dropoff, and the more extreme conditions it operates in, the sooner some kind of failure can be expected. The speedometer in my car goes significantly into the tripple-digits, but I wouldn't be shocked if driving it like a race car would result in mechanical problems rather sooner in its life-cycle.

Similarly, high temperatures are frequently used to simulate years of ageing with various equipment.

NASA to return to the Moon by 2024. One problem with that, says watchdog: All of it


Re: Hurry up guys

put up the Moon’s first National Park sign at the Apollo11 landing site. Where leaving footprints would be banned.

I look forward to seeing them install the asteroid defence missile system to protect the site.


Re: Hurry up guys

When did the moon become a US posession?

An internationally protected place or world heritage site would be better.

The moon is not on our world, either. "Moon heritage site" doesn't have the same ring.

US Patent Office to take only DOCX in future – or PDFs if you pay extra


worst-case rely on character recognition techniques to scrape the text into an easier format.

Well that's not a fair comparison. Somebody could scan a piece of paper and insert it as an image into an DOCX file just as easily. PDFs (that aren't just images of scanned pages) are trivially easy to extract to images and text.

Amazon puts an $8.5bn MGM in its shopping cart, clicks on checkout


Re: disappointing quality of movies out of Hollywood

I am also getting bored with everything depending on evermore outrageous CGI

It was the improving technology of special effects which gave us the blockbuster (and predominantly sci-fi) film boom of the 80s & 90s.

CGI has the potential to make it cheaper and easier to make better, more imaginative films. That reality hasn't worked out that ways is not the fault of the technology, but unrelated studio issues.

Apple's iPad Pro on a stick, um, we mean M1 iMac scores 2 out of 10 for repairability


I'm surprised they didn't cut out the USB sockets lest you plug in any non-Apple drives!

No point in that. Wi-Fi chipsets are cheap and low-power enough they can be included in USB drives. A bit like the old personal FM transmitters...

Man found dead inside model dinosaur after climbing in to retrieve phone


Re: Poor sod..

A telephone can potentially fail. Getting wet will do it.

A better option, or at least a good backup in most cases is having a whistle on your keys. Will cover great distances with very little effort. The recommended distress signal option for hikers as well.

Help wanted, work from anywhere ... except if you're located in Colorado


Re: Top Tip

State income tax is fairly insignificant next to federal income taxes (and related federal withholdings).

A quick lookup seems to show New York state income tax rate at 5.99%, while Colorado is 4.63%. Not a huge difference. Worth paying if you can negotiate a 2% higher salary out of it (higher cost of living area).

Plus you could move shortly after getting the job. You'd probably have to pay income taxes in both states for the period that you are faking your mailing address, to ensure neither state can arrest you for tax fraud... They NEVER object to getting MORE in taxes than they're owed.

It took 'over 80 different developers' to review and fix 'mess' made by students who sneaked bad code into Linux


Re: not just umn.edu

Those other identities / personas won't be "trusted" by the kernel developers, so there's no reason to worry about them. They were only successful because they were associated with a group that has been reliable and trustworthy in the past. Unless they have similar connections to other organizations, it's a non-issue.

Apple's macOS is sub-par for security, Apple exec Craig Federighi tells Epic trial


Re: Keeping things secure

You can't run .exes or other binaries from Windows with a click these days.

What? Of course you can.


Re: Keeping things secure

If you gave Linux to your typical office desktop users, you'd have as many, if not more, of the same security breaches.

We have an office full of Linux systems, and never had a single breach. A big part of that is that users are just that. Locked-down user, no privileges to install anything.

With Windows, you can't even set-up two users on the local system to be able to access the same set of files, without making them administrators. Search for "unable to take ownership". You'll see lots of resolutions options like disabling UAC, which is both a terrible idea, and still doesn't work. You can set all the ACLs on the files and folders correctly to allow two users full access to them, but Windows only recognizes one owner, and won't let you open and modify those files until you're the owner, which you can't make happen unless you're also an administrator...

Linux is designed to be a sane, multi-user operating system. Windows has only just the basics of multi-user operation tacked-on, poorly.

And if users were allowed to install software, they would only be doing it from the repos... Careful use of sudo can allow them to do that, without giving them full root permissions. And those Linux software repos are still curated and extremely, without being locked-down with onerous restrictions and fee demands like Apple does with their store. Whereas the very model for Windows software installation has for decades been "download binaries from websites on the internet and run them, and say yes when asked if they should be allowed to do absolutely anything to your system" which is the real security nightmare.

Linux doesn't let you run exe's or other binaries from files attached to e-mails with a click. Linux doesn't hide (crucially important on Windows) file extensions from you, allowing attackers to mask executable code as innocuous images or other documents.

And should we talk about auto-run?

This is just scratching the surface. The list of ways in which Windows is inherently insecure is legion.

Apple announces lossless HD audio at no extra cost, then Amazon Music does too. The ball is now in Spotify's court


Re: Yay!

Converting an analog medium into a digital representation and then back to analog again is, to put it mildly, less than ideal

On the contrary, converting to digital is the only way to ensure you can perfectly reproduce the analogue signal.

If you are doing digital sampling above the Nyquist rate (right about double the sound's highest frequency), the digitizing process is provably perfect. What the ADC input picks up will be the exact same waveform the CD spits back out. It's math.

Digital media formats have error checking and correcting codes, which are not possible in the analogue realm. Analogue media just wears out imperceptible until it progressively becomes impossible to ignore.

Colonial Pipeline suffers server gremlins, says it's not due to another ransomware infection

This post has been deleted by a moderator

When software depends on a project thanklessly maintained by a random guy in Nebraska, is open source sustainable?


But in practice, the reason you weren't developing it yourself in the first place is likely because you lack the ability to actually do so.

Unlikely. The #1 reason is because somebody is doing it (for free) for you already, so why put any time/effort/money into it when it needs none? When the project dies, that calculus changes.

Also, if you can't afford to fund a few modifications to an open source project, what are the chances you could have afforded the license cost for the proprietary version in the first place?

I know of MANY small companies that have gone out of business when a proprietary piece of software (which they relied on) changed its license terms or greatly increased the price. I can't think of ANY cases where an open source project being abandoned resulted in the same... When its open source you have so many options, where with proprietary software you have just the one choice.

Chinese rocket plunges into Indian Ocean, still lands sharp rebuke from NASA


Landing in water?

no one could predict its exact destination, other than a 70 percent chance it would be in water

Thank goodness it didn't target my teacup while I was holding it.

Google will make you use two-step verification to login


Actually intercepting someone's SMS messages can be done quickly, easy, and undetectably:


Telcos crammed 8.5m fake comments against net neutrality into FCC's inbox


Re: Or, ya know, just issue people a government digital ID?

Schools typically issue student IDs to everyone, which are rather universally accepted as valid ID for minors.

Adults (old enough to drive) can get a cheap state photo ID without the driving test, typically through the same process, if desired.

Day 3 of the Apple vs Epic trial: What actually is an iPhone anyway?


Re: This is supposed to go on for another three weeks, right?

So a keyboard is now two accessories?

No, that's just one. But if you're not holding the iPad, you probably need something to stand it up, too.

if you're going to be doing serious typing then a real keyboard is required, but that's the same on all devices.

Which is why all other devices include a keyboard.

as for the dumb terminal... what exactly are you connecting to?

Local/offline mode. Just echoes what you type to screen. Hit the Print Screen button to output it to the connected printer.

The idea is to have a low distraction environment. The WiFi was often switched off

That works well on a laptop, too. Also see typewriter and dumb terminal comment above.


Re: This is supposed to go on for another three weeks, right?

You can write text on an iPad? And you only need a couple accessories to do it? Wow! IOS is getting close to parity with typewriters and dumb terminals...

Yahoo! and! AOL! sold! for! $5bn! as! Verizon! abandons! media! empire! dreams!


“Verizon Media has done an incredible job turning the business around over the past two and a half years and the growth potential is enormous,” Hans Vestberg said in a statement.

When Verizon bought Yahoo in 2016, it had a search market share of about 3%. Now they're around 1.5%. That's an impressive turnaround, no question. Source: https://gs.statcounter.com/search-engine-market-share/all/worldwide/2016

With low numbers like that, there is certainly growth potential, but also death-spiral potential.

China launches first module of new, crewed, Tiangong-3 space station


Re: Congrats to China

I'd recommend irradiation with strong alpha or beta emitters (instead of UV light) while the humans are elsewhere. Last I checked, Deinococcus is not harmful to people.


Is "earthlings" children?

Only if dumplings are small dumps.

Earthlets is a more proper name for children.


Re: Congrats to China

the environment becomes so toxic, that it is cheaper to just replace it

As with cheap flats, you just need to open the windows to air it out for a bit.


Re: Congrats to China

The ISS doesn't have long left, it's likely to be decommissioned within 10 years

Perhaps China can get a good price on it... They certainly don't mind making copies. I know they won't take our used electronics any more, but maybe they can make an exception.

Maybe the next ISS will be made by Foxcomm.

Traffic lights, who needs 'em? Lucky Kentucky residents up in arms over first roundabout


Build your own induction coil out of magnet wire and attach it to the bottom of your bike. Add some electrical load like a series of resistors or low-voltage LED. Very little weight, and will trigger the loop.


Re: Er ...

I'd expect that 99.99% of Texans would not have a clue where Reunion is on a map of the world.

That won't stop them from signing-up to invade it.


a Honda. Which evidently don't have enough metal in them to trigger the sensor

The trick is to stop at the light, then walk over to the sidewalk and push the pedestrian crossing button to get the light to change.

Shadow over Fedora 34 as maintainer of Java packages quits with some choice words for Red Hat and Eclipse


Re: Not just Java

After a few 1TB venv's for a bunch of simple apps, you might start to question the logic of this deployment method. Not to mention the logistics of updating package X in every venv when you find out there's a vulnerability that needs patching.

I guess it's better than a docker container for /bin/true, but it's still pretty inefficient.



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