* Posts by AndyMTB

31 posts • joined 2 May 2019

Microsoft shows off Office 2021 for consumers ahead of the coming of Windows 11

AndyMTB

Drivers?

I'd heard that the launch was being delayed in the UK due to specific hardware interface problems, missing drivers apparently. They don't want the launch to tank.

Fix five days of server failure with this one weird trick

AndyMTB

Re: Power supply on the floor?

Was there something about single-ended and double-ended terminators? I wasn't really a sysadmin but was involved in a large (at the time) migration of an Oracle db from old raid-5 disks to new super-dooper smart raid arrays on a "massive" HP T500. We had a whole night to do it but the new raid arrays wouldn't connect. Finally fixed the problem just before the takeaway closed, so we could enjoy our Chinese while the DAT tape slowly restored the database.

Hmmmmm, how to cool that overheating CPU, if only there was a solution...

AndyMTB

Re: The first/only water cooled ICT 1301?

George! I loved George (V3 I recall was the one I cut my teeth on). And those temporary files "!" whose name incremented each time you created a new one - ! became !1 then !2 if you created 2 more temp files, so you had to be on your toes to keep track of them. Were the command files called macros? We had the use of an ICL 1904S the other side of the city, a PDP 11/70 on-site and then, wonderfully, a VAX 750 which of course blew the socks of everyhting with it's unlimited virtual memory, all 500Mb of it.

Ouch! When the IT equipment is sound, but the setup is hole-y inappropriate

AndyMTB

Re: "tales about all manner of things being inserted into all manner of orifices"

Yes, they were indeed Treats, and that was the ad. Made by Mars but no longer available, at least not here in the UK

AndyMTB

Re: "tales about all manner of things being inserted into all manner of orifices"

Similarly for me - peanut stuck in ear. My mum warmed up a spoonful of chocolate, poured it into the guilty orifice and once it was set gave me a sharp slap on the other side of my head. Came out a treat.

Terminal trickery, or how to improve a novel immeasurably

AndyMTB

Re: Black magic

Ahh yes, generation numbers mycode.for;34 What anguish when I moved to Unix, before I got into the habit of saving the original file with a datestamp, at least until I discovered sccs.

Apple's latest macOS Big Sur update stops cheapo USB-C hubs bricking your machine

AndyMTB

I wonder if it's to do with thermal monitoring. Do the Apple chargers slightly under-power compared to spec, so a true-to-spec 3rd party charger needs to be watched?

Wine pops cork on version 6.0 of the Windows compatibility layer for *nix systems

AndyMTB

Re: Not always a game, though

I've managed to get my Edge 705 (a usb device) and an old car GPS unit to connect to Garmin Express running Wine, via this link https://christitus.com/garmin-express-linux/.

Runs very slow, you may think it's not working but look at "top" to reassure yourself it's winding up. Once displayed it runs ok. I only use it for software or map updates, I upload rides directly into Connect via the "upload" option.

React team observes that running everything on the client can be costly, aims to fix it with Server Components

AndyMTB

Re: Lightning fast javascript?

So the entire page would be sent as X-directives...? Think of the advertising revenues, blockers and pi-holes wouldn't have a chance!

Pizza and beer night out the window, hours trying to sort issue, then a fresh pair of eyes says 'See, the problem is...'

AndyMTB

First thing I used to do when faced with a config issue was scan the file system for files modified in the last few days. Easy-peasy in unix, probably not feasible with Windaz registry, thankfully never was called to do anything serious on a click-click-drag o/s.

'We've heard the feedback...' Microsoft 365 axes per-user productivity monitoring after privacy backlash

AndyMTB

Re: The LOC Metric

A long time ago, our department (primarily programmers) was subjected to a "number of lines of code per week" metric. Cue one of my colleagues unwrapping his code - DO I=1,20 became 20 pasted copies.

Who knew that hosing a table with copious amounts of cubic metres would trip adult filters?

AndyMTB

Re: Inside joke?

When PCs were first being rolled out in the Aerospace factory I worked at, slowly replacing DEC's All-in-One offering on a Vax cluster, they had a tedious habit of locking-up/not booting/disconnecting from the network (Pathworks over Decnet - there goes all the old 386 protected(?) ram. One bright spark I workd with suggested a Fast Action Response Team to dash around the facory to sort things out. He would have got away with it too, until he suggested we leave calling cards in case the user was away at lunch -"You've been FARTed". You know who you are, Frank!

Master boot vinyl record: It just gives DOS on my IBM PC a warmer, more authentic tone

AndyMTB

Wasn't there a little optical reader gadget mounted on a sucker that you placed on the top RHS of the tv screen? Source code would was broadcast like a changing bar-code and downloaded to your BBC while you watched the program.

It's always DNS, especially when a sysadmin makes a hash of their semicolons

AndyMTB

I still (at home -I'm retired) copy config files to a .YYYY-MM-DD extension version before making any changes. Used to be standard practice on Oracle control files, hosts files, *.ini,*.config etc

Dell online store charges 16 million dollars for new laptop with paint job

AndyMTB

Re: Some would say

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ii0PNk4DjQs

The Two Ronnies, any excuse to re-watch!

And how do I make links clickable?

Microsoft drives users to the Edge: Internet Explorer to redirect to Chromium-based browser in November

AndyMTB

Upvoted for pi-hole! Reminded me to check on the status of mine - uptime 134 days. Amazing how much faster sites run when you don't even have to fetch the ads!

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

AndyMTB

Re: Why

Ahh, you answered my question! You watched those old films too?

AndyMTB

Re: Why

Couldn't they fit one of those knobs onto the wheel, like you used to see cool dudes using in their cars on old American PI films? Those guys used to whip the steering wheel round in a frenzy when they were chasing the baddies.Were they called "dead man's hands" or am i getting mixed up with the kill-switch on trains?

We don't need maintenance this often, surely? Pull it. Oh dear, the system's down

AndyMTB

Similar tale with an application written against an Oracle db. This software near enough ran a chemical plant, I inherited the db when the client switched to us for maintenance. Performance was always slow, and got dramatically worse with a new, major, all-singing all-dancing upgrade - even though a couple of new app servers were added and the db server was improved . So one weekend I left trace on, carted the couple of Gb of log files onto a spare server and ran tkprof to sort the sql. I thought I'd get maybe 20 or 30 high-usage statements that accounted for the bulk of the resource consumption, that could perhaps be addressed with indexes etc. No, there were thousands of single-use statements - it transpired that hardly any statements were re-usable, so the db was having to parse and optimize every single query. They'd used loads of dynamic sql, forming up the statements to include eg "part_no='A1234dd5". Turned out that bind variables were an unknown to the newly-recruited sql "expert". Took them about a month to re-jig the most widely-used bits of code, and performance became satisfactory (it never became fast, I always said it was because we running on windaz). The software vendor had the good grace to send thanks, and intimated that other customers were grateful too.

Why cloud costs get out of control: Too much lift and shift, and pricing that is 'screwy and broken'

AndyMTB

Re: Cloud is a Rolls Royce

Morris Marina. I loved mine, my first car passed on from my father when he upgraded to an Austin Maxi.

You *bang* will never *smash* humiliate me *whack* in front of *clang* the teen computer whizz *crunch* EVER AGAIN

AndyMTB

Re: With great power comes great incompatibility

Must admit I too have been "busy" googling Walsall, the plugs and switches they made took me back to my childhood growing up in Willenhall - our house was fitted exclusively with Crabtree products. I'm guessing I must have had an uncle who worked there. I definitely had an uncle who worked at Yale as a master locksmith. Even as a kid I could get back into the house without a key by applying what Uncle Les had taught me!

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

AndyMTB

Zombie Hand

Pre-dating the days of IT (well, OK there were a few BBC 1st gens knocking around) when I were just a lad earning some extra pocket money working weekends and holidays at the local car-wash (yes, it was called "Jeeves"). Me and my mate were considered trusty enough to open-up, cash-up and even drop the takings off at the bank when the manager was away. The start of the day involved powering up the whole plant, separate relays for brushes, rollers, heaters etc, and a certain order these switches had to be turned on/plugged in. Bit of a faff running back and forth, so Pete and I had worked out a system where he did one end and me the other, suitably timed so that the power-up sequence was maintained via synchronized yells. Worked really quickly and efficiently, until the day we managed to get out of step. I plugged in the last connector but unfortunately it was already live at this point, resulting in a big, black smoke-filled bang. Needless to say I jumped back a socially-distanced 6 feet from the billowing socket, but with a charred and completely crusty-black hand.

"This is going to hurt soon" thinks I, as Pete comes scampering along to investigate the loud noise. He goes a bit weak-kneed and has to sit down when he spies my hand, which surprisingly was still attached to my arm and hadn't started to register on the pain threshold yet. I tried to flex a finger, and the skin cracked along the joint. I say "skin", but it became obvious that my hand wasn't completely barbecued, it was merely covered in a thick layer of carbon that had spouted out of the electrical socket. A few dabs with another finger to confirm this theory, then a swish under the tap confirmed that everything was indeed still in working order.

And the surprising thing was, after we'd re-set the master relays and re-powered up it all worked, even the exploding plug. Lessons learnt - until Pete and I had a go at fixing the VI form vending machine, but that's another story.

If Daddy doesn't want me to touch the buttons, why did they make them so colourful?

AndyMTB

Re: z-fold?

We always called it pyjama paper.

Linus Torvalds drops Intel and adopts 32-core AMD Ryzen Threadripper on personal PC

AndyMTB

Re: New PC

Yes, my own desktop feels a bit like Trigger's broom. New everything (a few times over) apart from the case and the ethernet cable. At least I'm a whizz at getting it open these days.

Well, that's something boffins haven't seen before: A strange alien streaks around Jupiter

AndyMTB

Re: Who said they came from Mars....

Did anyone else tape up a torch so as to shine Mysteron-doughnuts across the walls?

Das reboot: That's the only thing to do when the screenshot, er, freezes

AndyMTB

Re: Funny that

Or setting someone's VMS prompt to "Help ?" and seeing how long they persevere trying to get out of "Help".

Windows Terminal hits the big 1.0: Fit for production?

AndyMTB

What you need is that Ubuntu thinggie - type "photo" and it suggests "shotwell" etc

Elevating cost-cutting to a whole new level with million-dollar bar bills

AndyMTB

Re: The fix was $600 line drivers.

A friend of mine went to a fancy-dress party as Gandalf - he "painted" (think it was lipstick) his eyelids and walked around blinking a lot,

BOFH: What's the Gnasher? Why, it's our heavy-duty macerator sewage pump

AndyMTB

OS/2 !! - remember the tag-line "a better Windows than Windows". If only we'd have believed them....

What a meth: Elderly Melbourne couple sign for 20kg shipment of drugs, say cops

AndyMTB

Re: Not them...

That's even worse! An old totally unsuspecting couple getting caught up in all of this. Does the old dentist's drill treatment work on dentures?

AndyMTB

Somewhat irresponsible of El Reg to publish a full colour picture of the old dears, don't you think?

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