* Posts by Ribfeast

78 publicly visible posts • joined 3 Oct 2018


It's 2024 and Intel silicon is still haunted by data-spilling Spectre


Ahhh that caption, as an 80's kid that made me laugh!

Ahhh that caption, as an 80's kid that made me laugh!

A visa to fill Australia's empty tech jobs is getting more expensive, but maybe better value


Re: Employment Fiddle

Well said, employers here don't want to pay properly for IT skills, so they dilute the talent pool to reduce wages. I could make a stack more in mining or other industries vs being a computing architect.

And all these migrants are also increasing competition for the limited housing supply.

Dell kills sweetheart distribution deal with Broadcom's VMware


Re: OK, I'll bite

Because Xen has been dead for at least 10 years.

British railway system is getting another excuse for delays – solar storms


Buried cables aren't safe either.


How hard is your network really, comms watchdog asks telcos


In rural Australia here, we had some floods and bushfires that took out power to the local cellphone towers. They flipped across to UPS power, and then generator power. Ran great for 12 hours, and then the generator ran out of fuel because nobody could get to the tower. The tower has point-to-point wireless connectivity to adjacent towers (too hard to run cable up the side of a mountain), so no fibre to dig up at least.

There was also the recent Optus outage that took out banking and comms for half the country a few weeks ago due to a BGP routing bungle.

HP sued over use of forfeited 401(k) retirement contributions


Still boggles the mind that your retirement fund and health insurance are linked to your employer. Much prefer the Australian system of superannuation, where 10 or 11% of your wage is automatically put into your retirement fund and invested immediately. And if you put in more on top of that percentage, the gov matches it. And most jobs are advertised as wage Plus super.

And health insurance is optional (although you get taxed for NOT having it). The medicare system is at least free, although the waiting lists can suck for some operations.

As it prepares to abandon its on-prem server products, Atlassian is content. Users? Not so much


Re: Good luck in sensitive data situations

Defence here too, all our stuff is air-gapped, so cloud will not function. 500 users is a joke when we have less than half of that on some systems. So I'd say we'll be looking for alternatives too.

Chap blew up critical equipment on his first day – but it wasn't his volt


Re: It doesn't always smoke though

When I used to fix computers for a certain fruity vendor, I brought in my Tesla coil from home to invisibly kill any parts that had an intermittent failure, to ensure it was permanent, ensuring we never got the faulty part back after they "tested" it. No visible evidence, and did the trick.

US amends hypersonic weapons strategy: If you can't zoom with 'em, boom 'em


Re: Pebbles

Metal Storm has entered the chat :)

Criminals go full Viking on CloudNordic, wipe all servers and customer data


Re: "We have seen no evidence of a data breach"

Unintentional cloud backup :)

Why do cloud titans keep building datacenters in America's hottest city?


I got in just before they kicked off Demand charges here in Australia on some tariffs. I pay 36c per kwh for power used any time, and I get 12c per kwh for solar I export from my 19.6kW system (17.5kw of inverters). Maths doesn't work for battery storage yet. Some people are stuck on Time Of Use plans which are closer to 60c per kwh in the evenings, but marginally cheaper than my rate in the early morning.

Demand charges are worse again. If you consume say 10kW consistently for a 30 minute period, then you will be charged 10x 15-20c PER DAY for the rest of the billing month. So staggering high-use appliances becomes a must. I've had the EV charging, oven on, ducted AC on, and induction cooktop running, exceeding 20kW draw in the evenings sometimes, if I was subject to a demand charge, it would be brutal.

SAE says yes to making Tesla EV chargers an American standard


Here in Australia we have the CCS, and I like that people can't just randomly walk up and unplug my car while it is charging. I don't find the connector too bulky, but I guess in other countries where you need to use an adaptor to get CCS to plug into NACS it might be an issue.

AmigaOS 3.2.2 released for those feeling nostalgic


Still have two Amiga 500s here, but I think their floppy drives were damaged by one of the old floppies I had (was working fine for multiple disks, then none). Also have a large ADF collection. Would love a solution where I can have a CF/SD card full of ADF files and play them on the native hardware, would the PiStorm do that? Which Amiga OS would I need then, 3.1?

Nice smart device – how long does it get software updates?


My fridge and washing machine are LG, but they don't do anything useful except tell me that the load of washing is done, or the fridge door is open. I can't adjust the fridge temperature, I can see the set temperature but not the actual temperature inside the fridge. I can't start washing jobs remotely either, so kinda pointless.

Our Lifx light globe still seems to be supported after many years, but only gets switched on once in a blue moon for lighting effects out on the deck.

We have an Intel NUC as a HTPC connected to the projector, smart TVs aren't great after a period of time.

The BlackBean is used to send infrared signals to our split system aircon on the wall, to simulate the remote.

The main smart devices we use regularly are power switches, we have them for fans in the stables, barley boiler, electric farm kart charger timer, and the electric fence energizer, so I can turn the fence off remotely if I'm out in a paddock and need to fix the electric fence. It would be a bummer if these devices stopped working. On the to-do list is to set up a separate wifi SSID and segregated VLAN for these devices in case of compromise.

Women sue Apple claiming AirTags helped their stalkers


Re: Find My? AirTags...

I do the same with my partner, we both have Find My enabled, with locations explicitly shared to each other. Comes in very handy, but can certainly see how it could be misused.

Look! Up in the sky! Proof of concept for satellites beaming energy to Earth!


Re: No mention of SimCity?

Glad I wasn't the only one who had that thought :)

Hot, sweaty builders hosed a server – literally – leaving support with an all-night RAID repair job


Had a few over the years.

One tightass client had their server rack set up inside a shower cubicle, with tiles, plumbing etc still in place. They had installed a splitty AC up on the wall to keep things cool. Problem was, the server rack was mounted sideways, so unracking servers was impossible once the rack was slid into place.

It all worked, but was sooo dodgy. No UPS, around 3 switches between one room and another etc.

Another site had a splitty up on the wall with racks directly below it, Condensation drain outside blocked up, so it dripped all over the racks and took a $500mil org offline for a day or two until replacement kit could be sourced.

Another site had the chillers fail/trip off for their server room, it hit around 60-65C on the door handle to the room, according to the fireys who fired an infrared thermometer at the handle. Big red switch was pushed. PDUs have since had temperature monitors installed, and high temp cutouts enabled. AC is still woeful though, with AC coming from the ducts in the ceiling, and no way for the hot air to get out, other than rising to some return vents.

iPhone 14 car crash detection triggered by roller coasters


Maybe they could just put in a geofence around theme parks so that the fall detection doesn't false alert?

How this Mars rover used its MOXIE to convert CO2 into precious oxygen


Don't you need a bunch of nitrogen to make it breathable too?

Impressive achievement!

Psst … Want to buy a used IBM Selectric? No questions asked


Those audits always bothered me. I worked for an MSP, and it would cost the customer a fortune for us to come in and go through everything for them to satisfy an audit. And I doubt they could bill the vendor wanting the audit for that time.

Mars helicopter to take a breather, recharge batteries


Maybe use the helicopter to blow the dust off the lander? Risky though :)

Iceotope: No need to switch servers to swap air-cooled for liquid-cooled


I'm guessing if it simply replaces the fans, and mounts onto the CPU itself, wouldn't everything else in the case still overheat? RAID controllers, RAM, drives etc.

Plus wouldn't the system throw up faults as it is seeing 0 RPM from the fans?

Chinese boffins suggest launching nuclear Neptune orbiter in 2030


Re: Why?

Water can be converted into rocket fuel, ie split it into hydrogen and oxygen, then burn it.

CISA and friends raise alarm on critical flaws in industrial equipment, infrastructure


I remember working for a water/sewer provider, and their SCADA network was fully separated from the main corporate network. With only a few ports open between the networks for status traffic to get through from the collector probe in the SCADA network across to the central NOC in the main network. Everything was locked down tight.

Engineer sues Amazon for not covering work-from-home internet, electricity bills


If they have to work from home, then they can claim their home office expenses on tax as a deduction, at least in Australia. Here you can also claim per-hour based on some formula, or do it the hard way and work out power, % of your residence, internet, etc etc.

The savings in fuel and time for me are immense, I love working from home. Save 2 hours in the car, and a 130km round trip, car needs servicing less often, less fuel, etc.

Dunno why they are chasing Amazon, just claim it on tax.

A lightbulb moment comes too late to save a mainframe engineer's blushes


Re: The universe just likes to mess with you

I had similar, my mobile phone has a magnetic back in its case that attaches to a magnetic mount in the car. When I sit my phone near my laptop, the laptop goes to sleep, as it triggers the lid closed sensor.

New study demonstrates iodine as satellite propellant... in space


Re: Uh

This stuff is nasty too:


Apple warns sideloading iOS apps will ruin everything


With the FluBot malware running rife through the Android ecosystem (I get dozens of texts from it a week), in some ways I appreciate the walled garden of IOS somewhat. If there was a way to sideload without losing that security it would be good though...

Chinese auto-maker accused of altering data after fatal autonomous car accident


I could just imagine a directive from higher-ups in China to Nio to remotely disable all their vehicles in a certain country, as a precursor or in the middle of hostilities etc. I'm sure Tesla could do similar if they wanted.

NASA readies commands to switch on Hubble's back-up hardware


I thought it was "A hand on the bird is not as good as two in the bush" ;)

One good deed leads to a storm in an Exchange Server


Reminds me of the time a previous employer in the early 2000's sent an all staff message from one of the bosses or CEO, with a large attachment. Think it was a TIFF file or something that should have been a JPG or more optimal format. Was a multi-site company with hundreds of staff, and the WAN link at the head office where the mail server lived was only 4 megabit or similar. Took a long time for everyone to download that message.

Toyota reveals its work on an honest-to-goodness cloak of invisibility


Re: I remember a SciFi book about this.

Beat me to it, but the problem is that it is quite brittle I believe.

Ah, you know what? Keep your crappy space station, we're gonna try to make our own, Russia tells world


Strap an engine to it, and turn the ISS into a space ship instead. Or even pop it in orbit around the moon or mars or something. Could even just fill it with supplies, or fuel, for easy access to them while building a moon base etc.

I'm guessing radiation shielding and serviceability then start to become issues if it remains inhabited away from the earth's magnetic field.

AdGuard names 6,000+ web trackers that use CNAME chicanery: Feel free to feed them into your browser's filter


Re: PiHole is great but

Yeah I have a VPN link on my phone to home, so I can block ads using my home PiHole server while out and about.

China, Thailand, UAE team up to test cross-border crypto-payments


Isn't this what XRP (Ripple) was for?

The wastepaper basket is on the other side of the office – that must be why they put all these slots in the computer


Re: Fire

I remember replacing the Nichicon capacitors in my old 1989 Toyota Cressida ECU for this issue also.

Intel sues former staffer for allegedly stealing Xeon cloud secrets in USB drives and exploiting info at Microsoft


Pop the files as attachments in a draft e-mail, but don't send it.

Go home/somewhere else and log into webmail.

Download the attachments from the draft e-mail to your disk/USB/NAS/whatever

Delete the draft

Doubt it would show up on logs as the e-mail was never sent.

Cisco intros desktop switches, one with USB-C to power your laptop


If only...my workplace has OM1 cabling everywhere. Really needs to be replaced with something that is capable of faster speeds.

Tesla axes software engineer for allegedly pilfering secret Python scripts after just three days on the job


Where I work, anything cloudy is blocked, even if I take my work laptop home. USB sticks are also read only. OneDrive, Dropbox, iCloud etc all blocked. Surprisingly Office 365 webmail still works, but not the admin portal.

No admin rights to install dropbox etc on workstations either. Would be pretty trivial to set up the same at Tesla surely?

Apologies for the wait, we're overwhelmed. Yes, this is the hospital. You need to what?! Do a software licence audit?


Surely you can just tell them to piss off? Do they actually have any right to enter your premises and perform an audit? Or take away valuable staff time to handhold vendors through the audit? Surely you can just say "too busy, go away", or some other excuse?

I used to work for an MSP, and customers would get audited occasionally and ask us to help, and it could take hours/days/weeks of stuffing around to track down licenses, work out staff counts etc, which the customer paid us for, and I doubt the vendor compensated them for.

BOFH: You might want to sit down for this. Oh, right, you can't. Listen carefully: THIS IS NOT AN IT PROBLEM!


Re: Older gear is always an option

Just rotate the monitor 90 degrees and change the settings in the OS to fix the orientation.

China compromised F-35 subcontractor and forced expensive software system rewrite, academic tells MPs


Surely the network that is used to develop these things is air gapped? I guess not...

Flash haters, rejoice! Microsoft releases tool to let you nuke Adobe's security horror before support ends


All good unless you have a network switch, SAN, or other device that has ceased vendor firmware support, and requires flash in order to manage the damn thing...

If you suddenly can't print to your HP Printer from your Mac, you're not alone: Code security cert snafu blamed


Had to fix this for someone last night. Moved hpdm.framework to the trash, and the OS reinstalled the driver. I then deleted and re-added the printer and all fixed.

Good news: Boffins have finally built room-temperature superconductors. Bad news: You'll need a laser, a diamond anvil, and a lot of pressure


Makes me wonder if black holes and neutron stars are also superconductors, and if that would induce any interesting properties or fields etc...

Finally, a wafer-thin server... Only a tiny little thin one. Oh all right. Just the one...


Re: UPS drained *real* quick.

This was the one:


A 16MW IC turbine synced incorrectly with a synchroscope. The generator section broke all the bolts holding it to the skid as well as the shaft and all wiring and conduit. The generator continued on its path out of the metal building it was housed in and slammed into another IC turbine in an adjacent building. I and the stupid operator were about 40 feet away at the control panel. Much noise flame shrapnel,smoke and arcing ensued.

No one was injured and it’s fortunate I didn’t have to run away like the operator did, cause my whole body was locked up watching this debacle. Wished I had a smartphone in 1982.

This event is rated by me as the third out of six dangerous events I have witnessed working at coal-fired and nuclear power plants. And second most damaging event related to grid syncing. I saw a step up transformer turn to plasma.

From a distance, the top level of the unit. I didn’t hear the explosion because I was somewhat near the safety relief valves.

I lost a bunch of dbs of hearing about then. Lots of J/cm. That unit no longer exists not but I bet the marks from my hand holding on to the guard railing were still there when they demoed the plant.


Re: UPS drained *real* quick.

I remember reading a story about something similar, maybe even on here.

Generator was in the megawatt league, and was flipped on without being in sync with the grid.

The generator was literally thrown from the building.

Apple launches incredible features everyone else had more than a year ago – this time for the 'smart home'


We have a couple of Efergy EGO smart wifi switches. Can turn them on and off remotely, and they also meter power, can see live power stats in the app, can set timers etc.

We use one for the stable lights, so they come off and on at a certain time. More reliable than the mechanical timer switches, as they don't have the time go out of whack when there is a power outage.

The other is hooked up to our electric fence energizer, so when I'm out in a paddock I can turn the fence off remotely and fix sections.

So how do the coronavirus smartphone tracking apps actually work and should you download one to help?


Re: Good for data-less phone plans

I work in a dark site too, no phones or smart watches etc allowed in. All staff phones get put in lockers at the entrance of the building. So the bluetooth option would see a hundred phones in near proximity, causing a ton of false alerts if one person got infected. But I like the bluetooth option as it is the least orwellian.

Real-time tragedy: Dumb deletion leaves librarian red-faced and fails to nix teenage kicks on the school network


Back at MIT (not the good one, the other one in NZ) in late 90's I remember the PCs in the various labs has LS120 "superdrives" which took a standard floppy as well as 120MB disks. A bit like a zip drive.

Games were banned, but they obviously overlooked the fact that an install of Quake fit rather nicely on the LS120 disks.

Had many hours of fun playing against other students.

Whenever a lecturer or admin peeped into the room, many PCs would mysteriously reboot. They suspected it, but never caught us.

One time we heard them bounding down the hall towards the room in advance, in a vain attempt to try and catch us :)