* Posts by Lon24

187 posts • joined 3 Jul 2020


Microsoft emits more Win 11 fixes for AMD speed issues and death by PowerShell bug

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: How many years ?

Surprised? The golden rule for their products is 'wait for version 3'. Treat version 1 as an alpha, 2 as a beta and 3 as the real product. Nobody should be using Win11 except as an evaluation product or it comes pre-installed. I haven't seen any of those in the channel yet. Have you?

Heart FM's borkfast show – a fine way to start your day

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: Nip in the bud

Alternatively just use one of those microcomputery thingymejobs better designed for the task and probably costing less than the Windows license alone. Oh, and using a lot less leccy.

Ubuntu 21.10: Plan to do yourself an Indri? Here's what's inside... including a bit of GNOME schooling

Lon24 Silver badge

Smooth FM

Upgraded my ThinkPad from Kubuntu 21.04 to 21.10 over the weekend. Done quickly and smoothly (for me).

I had reverted to using only LTS for my main desktop having had a few issues upgrading in years past. But Ubuntu seems to have sorted that so I may be revising my view on desktops. Production servers, of course, should be LTS.

And yes Kubuntu is a fine KDE distro if you can swallow systemd. I have to use Debian 11 KDE on some 32bit kit. Thank goodness I have Kubuntu alongside to sort issues caused by what the Debian team left out that the Kubuntu folks wisely included.

Devuan debuts version 4.0 – as usual without a hint of the hated systemd

Lon24 Silver badge


I've given up on it. The fight to get Exim4 on Raspbian Buster to use the correct acceptable FQDN was just too much for me and many others. Switched to postfix and it just works out of the box.

Devuan are ahead of the RPi people on a Bullseye release. Wonder if they have cracked the 64 bit video issues?

Brit MPs blast Baroness Dido Harding's performance as head of NHS Test and Trace

Lon24 Silver badge

Of course even if 99% say it's real you should still question it. If 99% are decent scientists then they will have questioned it too and failed to show it is untrue.

You may be that one brilliant person who can show the 99% are wrong.

But you have to show it. So far, no one has (scientifically). But if you believe in proof by assertion then we can maybe usefully re-purpose scientists as telephone sanitisers.

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: @Disgusted Of Tunbridge Wells

I should add before I get eaten by the epidemiolgists here - that when an innumerate politician is being told 2 or 4 weeks by different people to the crunch they should probably settle for 3. Instead they went for 5 turning what would have been bad into an unnecessary and forseeable catastrophy.

Praise to epidemiologist Ferguson's breaking ranks to publish famous paper which finally shamed the government into even that very late shutdown.

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: @Disgusted Of Tunbridge Wells

Expertise is a diverse field. We had the data (from Italy and elsewhere). We had the epidemiologists who were trying to fit this data into their models which 'understood' how known virus' spread. Then there were the stochastic modellers who hadn't a clue about epidemiology only what the raw data was showing and that was surprisingly consistent across countries despite different measuring systems.

The difference was 2 weeks and 4 weeks before the crunch came to the UK. That's because the virus inconveniently didn't behave as it should so many of the epidemiologists' assumptions were wrong (asymptotic v symptomatic symptoms spread - airborne v surface). Hence they got their forecasts wrong - whereas the stochastic forecasters got it right (because they were not making any assumptions) at the beginning. Of course things switch round as we learnt more about the behaviour.

The issue is those making the decisions are not especially numerate and able to see who is more likely to be right when. SAGE probably needed a few more expert mavericks too but the nature of appointment and process is likely to lead to committee-ised groupthink.

Experts are going to make mistakes and politicians will dump on those. But in the long run experts are more likely to get more right. Oh, and are more open to accepting failure and learning from it. Actually that is how you become an 'expert'!

Running a recent Apache web server version? You probably need to patch it. Now

Lon24 Silver badge

Let it Bleed

Phew - our freshly updated Debian 10 based servers are still on 2.4.38.

No edgy nervous breakdowns for us.

Facebook rendered spineless by buggy audit code that missed catastrophic network config error

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: Out of band management?

Yep, DNS failure/compromise is an expected hazard to any SysAdmin. One would expect someone to have a fresh copy of a host file to their most critical servers that could be quickly circulated to other engineers. That would have speeded up diagnosis and allowed the Zuck back into his office.

Indeed my memories of 'The Social Network' would imply Zuck would have one. But maybe his lappy was stuck in his orifice?

Ofcom unveils broadband switching plans, but providers claim it's not so easy

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: Sounds like a load of extra expense for the providers

Not to mention that when your connection goes down so does your VOIP. And if you have been switched from PSTN then you have only a mobile to sort the mess out. And f you live in a dodgy reception area (which includes my part of Inner London) then disaster is a clear option.

Doubly nervous since my parents' electricity supply was switched twice without their consent. And if you haven't consented it resulted in a Kafka situation where they couldn't revoke the consent they hadn't given.

Then there was sorting out new direct debits ...

UK Ministry of Defence apologises – again – after another major email blunder in Afghanistan

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: Smple safeguards

Thunderbird nags me if I put more than 5 in the cc field offering bcc. But with that number of addressees why on earth aren't they using a mailinglist manager? It's like running a database on a spreadsheet. Oh, wait ...

SpaceX successfully sends four amateurs into orbit for three-day tour

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: That's ruined it

Depends where you plan to land. Land: green, water: yellow (so you can still be spotted when your turm turtle ...). Oh and red if it's Texas. Not land or water but must be a myth with a governor that makes Boris seem almost sensible.

BT Wholesale wants the channel to give SMBs a nudge before copper sunset in 2025

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: The reality is that it's happening now

My router does have a POTS socket. It also does VOIP over the LAN. But I have more than one POTS device to plug into it - including the alarm system which is an issue I haven't sorted. If ADT do offer a digital solution it will cost. And when there is a power cut its Christmas for any burglars.

I.m thinking of investing in the small UPS market. Or filling a warehouse with 'em come 2024 ;-)

Boffins say Martian colonists could pee in buckets, give blood if they want shelter

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: Scab hardened mud huts

Something tells me you ain't got a future as an estate agent.

The magic TUPE roundabout: Council, Wipro, Northgate all deny employing Unix admins in outsourcing muddle

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: Are they being paid?

Were any P45s issued by the original employer? Otherwise either they should still be paying or have an agreed TUPE to another party.

But I guess as they were not employees but contractors to Wipro and all this goes out the window.

Astro Pi 2: New Raspberry Pi hardware with updated camera, sensors to head to the ISS this year

Lon24 Silver badge

'Excuse Me!

Batteries? You mean this cutting edge of technology doesn't have USB charging sockets? Where did all those trillions go? I mean they could have commandeered Elon's Tesla launch, chucked Starman away and just plugged 'em into the dashboard. But don't even think of cannabalising the Tesla's SD storage 'cos ...

ProtonMail deletes 'we don't log your IP' boast from website after French climate activist reportedly arrested

Lon24 Silver badge

I'm thinking using a one time pad sticking a stamp on it and plopping into any postbox is probably more secure unless the postie has an incredible memory - and some do!

Otherwise there is nothing to trackback once delivered if you use disposable gloves.

EU to formally probe Nvidia's $54bn takeover over British chip designer Arm – report

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: Whatt???

They do within their jurisdictions - which are rather bigger chunks of ARM's business than the UK's.

But you knew that you naughty boy ;-)

Lon24 Silver badge

Majority Voting?

Should China and the EU decide against the merger. But the UK decides for it. Who rules?

Answers on the back of a Union Jack please.

Internet Explorer 3.0 turns 25. One of its devs recalls how it ended marriages – and launched amazing careers

Lon24 Silver badge

Alternate Facts ... Alternate Universe

Oh, the Demon days ... and I got a Win95 disk from being a Microsoft Partner or some sort of agreement at the time. It had a browser unlike my early clients who didn't have one by default.

But I would swear it was MOSAIC not Internet Explorer. I may still have the CD somewhere. I'll boot a machine or a VM if I ever find it to checkout my memory. Anyway the real question was could you get online with a 4 megabyte Win95 machine?

Spoilt as we were by Demon's CLI MSDOS suite (what was it called?) which gave lightening access to usenet & email on a 640 kilobyte PC. What else would one want in life? Surely not that cludged creepy WWW thingy. How the hell was that going to catch on?

Thunderbird 91 lands: Now native on Apple Silicon, swaps 'master' for 'primary' password, and more

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: So far so good

Oh yes I'm on Thunderbird 78 too (Kubuntu 20.04). 13 release numbers between then and now seems very busy. Will I even recognise the new beasty? I do tend to prefer stability over agility in email clients. They are supposed to be a bit boring - IMAP, POP3 & SMTP are not exactly fast moving targets.

Elementary OS 6 Odin released on a 'pay what you want' basis

Lon24 Silver badge

Too Easy?

"Users of elementary OS never need Terminal to complete basic tasks,"

Except the reviewer confused by how to install LibreOffice how to use terminal? I'm not sure what what their selling proposition - it so easy you don't need terminal that it floored a knowledgeable user?

Avast, ye takeover lawyers! Norton LifeLock to acquire security rival

Lon24 Silver badge

Snake oil

Yes many good people say that. Eight billions worth of folks differ. Who is right?

If Norton et al could stop ransomware attacks then we wouldn't have any since any corporation would mandate them - if not then their insurers would. Or are El Reg's stories about incursions via Windows boxes fake?

And if they can get in to plant ransomware they can get in to do other stuff.

The issues with Norton et al is that not only do they slug performance but more dangerously give a false sense of security to the user. And we know from elsewhere what risk compensation can lead to. Defender is good and Norton et al need to be a whole lot better to overcome that.

Let's see independent objective evidence. I'm looking for double-blind studies to justify these mouth watering figures.

Open-source dev and critic of Beijing claims Audacity owner Muse threatened him with deportation to China in row over copyright

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: I think Audacity has had it, then.

"Muse just can't seem to get anything right."

Even worse their Audacity PR disaster is now backfiring to damage their core product musescore.

I don't think anything short of a grovelling apology and divesting Audacity is going to save either.

Well the developers probably have the final vote. Where is that vote going atm?

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: Xi Zuz Qrist

Turing Test: Failed.

We clock what you're trying to do here: El Reg strokes a claw across the OnePlus 9 Pro

Lon24 Silver badge


Yep, 900 smackers is now El Reg's 'mid-range'. Dunno where that puts me who for the last decade has spent between £142 (nice Honor 20 Lite) and £289 (Nexus 4 & 5) for something that has a design life of two years that, with luck, you can stretch to four. Some people apparently pay more for that for a screen repair nowadays.

My personal division is (Apple users look away now):

Budget < £100

Mid-range £100 to £200

Exotic £200-£300

Silly £300+

Our Friends Electric: A pair of alternative options for getting around town

Lon24 Silver badge

But beware some cycle infrastructure. Southwark Council recently 'improved' a roundabout on Crystal Palace Parade for cyclists under the Holland scheme. They ignored input from cyclists who would indeed welcome Holland style roundabouts. But instead put in a seperated protected system. So any cyclist turning right, as most do, have to unnecessarily give way six times including getting across two very busy carriageways.

But if they ignore it (and 100% do) by taking the vehicle route round the roundabout you only have to give way once across a little used lane. Serious cyclists tend to be serious about their safety. Well at least the older ones do or they wouldn't be here.

The really annoying thing besides the expense is that the rebuilding took months causing chaotic queues and diversions for four wheeled drivers who would naturally curse cyclists who just zoom past and then never use it.

Maybe Milton Keynes is a better place ...

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: The door

Is he still there? 'Cos I haven't seen him on anything other than Dave repeats in recent years.

Ad tech ruined the web – and PDF files are here to save it, allegedly

Lon24 Silver badge

Whilst rummaging in the garage over the weekend I came across a backup CD from 2005.

First shock was just how many websites I was able to stack uncompressed on less than 1GB of disk. Second shock was just how many ran on a modern Apache2 server without a hitch including some SSI and Perl scripting in the cgi-bin. They ran rather fast on my RaspberryPi.

They were all personally hand-chiselled HTML & Perl code. But then I came across one site that used php and mysql (An old phpBB version 1 forum). Impossible to hack into a working site on a modern system because of changes in all three 'packages' blew dependencies. That's where the rot started.

Simpler times, more dependable times when you did everything serverside and used flat databases. Oh and because you could assume no more than a 54k modem and a 640x480 screen they were light and compact.

I always argued that a good website was about content, not appearance. I made more money from ads that blended and were more relevant to the page (the original adwords) then when they tookover and created the ad-blocker market in a never to be resolved war of attrition.

So a pint James. Achieving a similar result by another method.

The coming of Wi-Fi 6 does not mean it's time to ditch your cabled LAN. Here's why

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: This months of work from home showed too....

Cables are good - conduits are better.

I didn't have them and have re-cabled the house twice (first time was co-axial thin ethernet in the 90s). All a pain. Put in a plastic 25mm pipe or similar between floors or under the floorboards with a piece of string (for pull through) to discreet access ducts solves all known cabling issues and should be future-proof when you might replace cat5 with fibre or whatever.

I'm having to do it piecemeal. Homes should now be built that way. Building standards do seem to be so last millennium.

United, Mesa airlines order 200 electric 19-seater planes for short-hop flights

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: I wonder

"We estimate the cost per charger for the ES-19 to be around $500k. A significant part of this infrastructure could be dual-purpose supporting the ground transportation and service vehicles."

That might be economic at the hub airport - but what of the remote regional airport that has only a couple of flights a day? As EV owners are well aware very fast chargers of much lower capacity are prone to frequent failure. With an equally expensive plane masquerading as a chocolate teapot on the tarmac - it's no fly until they can get a 'high-powered' engineering team to the issue. And they aren't going to fly up in another Mesa plane.

Single point of failure implies they need at least two of the bu**ers and hope the local sub-station doesn't blow.

Lon24 Silver badge

Getting all fired up!

Sitting on top of several thousand gallons of kerosene is challenging which has created sophisticated fire supression systems - usually based on smothering the seat of the fire denying it oxygen. But that don't work with Lithium batteries as some Tesla ex-owners and their local fire services have discovered.

Maybe parachutes in the air or ejector seats on the ground could be a way around the issue?

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: I wonder

"At take-off engines are typically at or close to maximum power. The requirement is to accelerate the aircraft to climbing speed, not cruising speed."

Maybe as this is a small aircraft it can take the length of a long airport runway to get to takeoff speed. Then, unlike jets, it won't have to do an initial steep climb before reducing power for noise abatement. An electric plane will be much quieter and hence may have lower and smoother power requirements.

On another topic - refuelling. Do the ground crew come out with a pair of giant caterpillar clips? 20 minute turnrounds won't get that much power back in. Or do they have a quick swap with already charged battery pack?

NortonLifeLock sniffs around Avast, announces 'advanced discussions' for acquisition

Lon24 Silver badge

Why does Red Hat screw up CentOS because IBM bought them?

Because when you own, you rule. Norton probably consider their business model is better than Avast which is why they can buy them. And removing a free competitor may look good on the boardroom paper. AVG is owned by Avast and hence soon by Norton?

Your non-use of AVG Free is no loss to Norton. People who think they must have something other than Defender may switch to a paid product. That's good news for the heirs of Peter.

AVG Free was useful to Avast as a loss leader for a lesser known brand and, hopefully, lead to upgrades to a paid version. That would be history.

BT to phase out 3G in UK by 2023 for EE, Plusnet, BT Mobile subscribers

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: If 3G goes lots of Amazon Kindles become useless

And old ThinkPads!

3G worked fine under Win10 but not Linux until a recent kernel update. So I was thinking that 2025 wasn't a problem - let alone 2023. But then I'm on the 'Three' network and they may have an eponomatic problem phasing out 3G ;-)

Here boy! Making the Sample Fetch Rover that'll collect soil from the Red Planet

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: Wow

I think you will find Mr Musk has, on past experience, re-postioned 2031 to a somewhat later date. This will give him time to launch LifeX - a project jointly financed with Murdoch to extend their lives long enough to achieve global domination. Different globes though - blue for Rupert and red for Elon.

Bezos gets the moon as the booby prize. As for the bearded one ...

Florida Man sues Facebook, Twitter, YouTube for account ban

Lon24 Silver badge

Might make contract bridge reporting a trifle confusing?

Dell bigwig: Expect another 6 months of supply woes. Oh, hello Windows 11

Lon24 Silver badge


It was Vista that made us go Linux - not Linux!

But for those that stuck with Windows Vista and its children I guess nothing will make them desert Redmondia. Which is good news for us Linux users in a year or two looking for really good and cheap ex-corporate hardware ejected onto the market by the son of ten.

Salesforce's Patterson blazes a trail for humble-braggers everywhere

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: No 'I' in team/s

I will just say in my younger days there is nowhere greater this side of heaven than being the support person who can get the salesmen out of shit-creek. That was if the developers had put them there. It was even better if the salesmen had sailed up said channel with a smidgin of over promising.

Good salesmen remember that - and you. Bad salesmen were ex-salesmen if they didn't.

Audacity users stick the knife – and fork – in to strip audio editor of unwanted features

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: Certainly, it can't be called "Audacity"

TINA - This Is Not Audacity aka There Is No Alternative

Go to L: A man of the cloth faces keyboard conundrum

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: Calling upon a higher power

I did some OCR work for a Diocese many easter moons ago. The very large religious document was appropriately in some gothic font. Well the OCR software (Textbridge?) was pretty good at checking stuff semantically and syntactically and the Diocese was excessively mean on budget - forgoing the added expense of proof reading.

Their belief in the infallibility of computers was somewhat greater than mine - so I thought I might just cast an eye 'just-in-case'.

It had worked very well. The only error I spotted was that it was all about some entity called Cod. Of course every sentence made a sort of sense (try it) and there was barely one that made no reference to our piscine saviour. A quick find & replace sorted it in the hope that any reference to the feeding of the five thousand had not been too fishily definitive.

Openreach to UK businesses: Switch is about to hit the fan. Prepare for withdrawal of the copper-based phone network now or risk disruption

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: The future is coming

Thank you - but I did know all that. We have VOIP - we've had it for decades. Even so our ISP cannot tell us when and how they are going to transition our PSTN line to which some analogue equipment is attached. They could if FTTP was an option. That's the point.

Hence the current plan is to do nothing and wait until Openreach and the ISP community can get all their ducks in a line.

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: The future is coming

We have a FTTC connection giving us around 70/20 and a /29 subnet. As I understand it PSTN dies in 2025 but last mile copper delivery may continue for longer. We have no 5G thanks to our local nimbys and I am unaware any 5G provider provides subnets at anything like comparable prices.

If our ISP (one of the better ones) hasn't a clue what they will be able to provide us with when - it does make planning a little challenging.

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: The future is coming

Oh that would be a nice little earner for ADT. And, I guess like Win11, my current kit will all need to be upgraded to accommodate it. Indeed ADT is so near a monopoly I'm surprised BT hasn't bought it.

Lon24 Silver badge

The future is coming

Or is it?

My small business is in a high density part of London within a stone's throw of the exchange. Ask for an advisory date for FTTP (or even how far we are down the rollout) and an answer there is none. Which complicates planning a little. And silence also from the alarm company too. And if I don't have the router protected by a UPS will that invalidate my insurance? So many questions, so many non-answers. It is as though this has just shot out of the blue.

Microsoft releases Windows 11 Insider Preview, attempts to defend labyrinth of hardware requirements

Lon24 Silver badge

EU to Microsoft: you really are going to have to rethink this one

I imagine EU beaureacrats are at this moment sharpening their mice to force MS to extend the Win10 2025 eol to 2030 or whenever. They will argue the landfill/environment impact but the impact on constituent government IT budgets for forced hardware upgrades may help.

The EU has form on bringing MS to heal. Let's hope they can do it again. Otherwise it's going to be Linux users like me who will most benefit buying some great second hand kit dumped on the market at silly prices.

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

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: The first/only water cooled ICT 1301?

When I later joined ICL it was in the early days of GEORGE 3 (or 4 if you wanted paging). MTBF was 15 mins!

But perseverance, Elon's "crash to learn" style, eventually made it into quite a nice stable OS.

Lon24 Silver badge

The first/only water cooled ICT 1301?

It wasn't designed that way.

I was working as a computer operator during my sixth form hols at a well known engineering company in the Black Country. They were a go-ahead organistion housing the kit and a resident ICT engineer in a state-of-the-art glass fronted office block facing south. Is the penny starting to drop?

Anyway it being the swinging 60s the company had purchased a spanking new ICT 1904. It magically had <drum roll> magnetic tapes. And magnetic tapes needed air conditioning whereas the 1301 drum just rolled along unpeturbed in any conditions.

So - the false ceiling was torn down to install the AC revealing an extensive network of water pipes. Cold water pipes as it turned out. On a blistering August summer's day the un-airconditioned air produced an absolute deluge as it condensed on the pipes right on to the top of the 1301.

The ICT engineers horror - not to mention the DPM as meltdown looked inevitable. But equally magically a dozen or so fire buckets were rapidly emptied and arranged along the top of the 1301. But buckets are round so complete coverage was impossible and the waterfalls were fickily moving along the exposed pipes necessitating constant re-configuration of the the computer's new bucket collection. But it worked the 1301 never missed a beat. But then it wasn't running GEORGE.

Perhaps that was the hardest day's work I have ever done - except, possibly the night before payroll day when one of the punch card machines supplying the data went unaligned and the 1301 reader rejected and halted after every fifth card. This had to be re-punched by one hand while holding up the errant card to spot the holes with the other before the payroll program would continue. The prospect of the Friday pay packet being empty was not an option for a company that didn't want its management lynched.

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

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: So, SatNad...

Downvote for avoiding a good question with moronic abuse. But on a positive note I'm not calling you a eugenist. They may have been terribly mistaken but they were mostly quite smart ;-)


Russia spoofed AIS data to fake British warship's course days before Crimea guns showdown

Lon24 Silver badge

Re: To sadly turn this political

"Next up: British fishing vessels are seen fishing in British waters." FTFY.

It's so 1904 and didn't end well for the Ruskie fleet: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dogger_Bank_incident



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