* Posts by ronkee

45 publicly visible posts • joined 19 Dec 2020

AWS accuses Microsoft of clipping customers' cloud freedoms

ronkee

The overwhelming trend in this market is that customers migrate from on-premise to cloud or create new workloads in the cloud.

Cloud to cloud migration is trivial.

Microsoft's call for delay is especially wrong headed. Customers who move to Azure now due to licensing are extremely unlikely to migrate again if the licensing rules become fairer later. They (and cloud competitors) will have been harmed forever if the licensing is anticompetitive now.

Delaying is more important than winning (but both are large stakes).

In rare bout of generosity, Oracle extends free support for Database 19c

ronkee

Re: In rare bout of generosity, Oracle...

It's not generous and it's not rare.

Oracle added years of extended support for 11g and 12c. They did it to give customers time to upgrade.

Ending mainline support in May with on-premise versions (on supported hardware platforms) not available until next year was clearly not tenable.

Support is 22.5% per annum. They were always going to extend, announcing it later would have just caused more trouble for customers.

Microsoft CEO whinges about Google's default search deals

ronkee

Re: Nefarious?

Microsoft know and are best positioned to assess unfair behaviour because they tried to do it to Google and failed. And they're succeeded in doing it to others more than everyone else in the industry put together.

People switch out Bing for Google, I haven't seen someone using Bing on a device where it wasn't default in about 15 years. I have seen people using Bing to open Google because they didn't know about changing the default.

Microsoft tried to squeeze out Google and failed. Google would have made more money if they hadn't been bid up in the auction for the Apple default.

I don't know the details of competition law and whether it was legal or not.

I mostly use duckduckgo.

Getting to the bottom of BMW's pay-as-you-toast subscription failure

ronkee

It was an bad idea, poorly executed.

BMW were paying for a seat heater for everyone, improving economies of scale and trying to use subscriptions to fund it.

It was a new jarring way of paying, it messed with various purchase taxes, lease, BIK, running costs and it was immediately both expensive and painfully expensive to customers. It also cut dealers out of the sales cycle and effected the 2nd hand market.

It was the the wrong feature to sell to customers who had never asked for it and didnt like it, at the wrong price, using the wrong model. Of course it failed.

Oracle disappoints market with revenue miss as Ellison hints at Azure database move

ronkee

Re: Am I reading this right?

Well it is a whole 0.16% of their quarterly sales.

It's natural to blame companies for their grabbiness, but it can be very easy to forget the forces that strongly incentivise short term results.

RIP Kevin Mitnick: Former most-wanted hacker dies at 59

ronkee

Mitnick Message: Rest in Peace.

Ghost in the Wires really was an entertaining and eye-opening read.

One of the great stories from that was how he went legit and got a job at AT&T, but they sacked him because they assumed he was trying to hack them again.

CISA unleashes Untitled Goose Tool to honk at danger in Microsoft's cloud

ronkee

Seems to be a tribute to a computer game

https://goose.game/

Massive outage grounded US flights because someone accidentally deleted a file

ronkee

Deleted files, trying to fix a sync issue between primary and backup database...

Could be lots of causes. The one that jumps out is that logs build up if the standby falls being or becomes unavailable. Then the primary starts to fill up. Then someone who doesn't know what a database is deletes the log files to stop it running out of space.

Google datacenters use 'a quarter of all water' in one US city

ronkee

Re: It is a lot of water ...

They're evaporating the water to cool the data center. It's far more efficient than dry cooling (and the capital costs are less). It lets the air-conditioners run at lower condensing temperatures.

As with many environmental decisions there are tradeoffs. Most engineers would see this as standard.

In time they'll fund reclamation projects that will give back more water locally than they take out.

Cloud DCs are almost always more efficient than the on-premise DCs they replace. So big headline figures of growth/usage aren't necessarily always a bad thing.

AWS strains to make Simple Storage Service not so simple to screw up

ronkee

Making a bucket private is really simple, it's default.

Adding more complexity and additional controls doesn't actually make it easier, though it can help with compliance tasks like verifying that buckets are still private.

The problem is that connecting to a public bucket is far easier. When security is hard, people work around it.

It's not an easy fix but it's not wildly difficult either, it's just that AWS aren't on the hook for your mistakes (when implementing their broken process) and customers have low standards.

Google and Microsoft add more renewable energy for datacenters

ronkee

Re: Power grab?

There'd probably be home customer demand for fixed pricing in the way that a PPA gets and an innovative electricity supplier could package deals that way but there'd still be variability (in aggregate and locally) and switching during low prices.

Bit barns use power 24/7 so their profile is that bit more stable.

PPAs fund extra capacity (or they should be doing that) which is good, but they're a financial instrument that shifts the cost of variability and security of supply onto the rest of the market.

At last, Atlassian sees an end to its outage ... in two weeks

ronkee

Re: We maintain extensive... DMML

Anything an errant script can do is still within the blast radius of a ransomware attack. In this day and age it's more likely than a catastrophic site failure of primary and standby.

This is the disaster your DR plan should be tested for.

AWS makes auto-recovery the default for EC2 instances

ronkee

Some software doesn't autostart

Sometimes you want or have to take manual steps before or while starting an instance.

DBAs massively over-provision Oracle to protect themselves: Microsoft

ronkee

Re: github?

1 more open source project on GitHub for the stats.

What is it with cloud status pages not reflecting reality?

ronkee

Status page is mostly marketing. If they were really serious about it being usable it would be a lot more usable.

They host their status page on their own infrastructure. Hence it breaks whenever there's a really big outage. If your first architectural decision is that compromised then it sets a low bar for trust. They'd never let a spokesperson say that of course.

Amazon stretches working life of its servers an extra year, for AWS and its own ops

ronkee

The M5 generation was launched in November 2017. The next generation of Intel was August 2021. That was long by Intel standards. And supply was constrained so it's not in every region and AWS aren't pushing people to upgrade, if everyone wanted to they couldn't.

Not many customers upgrade quickly, especially if they have reserved instances already.

A lot of that kit will be running for longer simply because it didn't go obsolete as quickly as usual.

Google Cloud started running its servers for an extra year, still loses billions

ronkee

Re: HW Cost

Supply chain issues. Running for longer does Intel a favour right now, when it normally wouldn't.

At the rate they're growing they probably use all the new chips they can get for new capacity and would have had capacity issues if they'd switched off older kit at the rate originally planned.

Oracle Linux appears somewhere unexpected: The Windows Store

ronkee

Good news

It's an easy way to get Red Hat command line syntax and package management for Windows users.

This is great for learners as tutorials are sometimes specific to Red Hat/CentOS and lots of people don't want to learn how to use Red Hat and Ubuntu.

Good news, it's another route for new users into Linux.

HCL Technologies makes partial change to its controversial bonus clawback policy

ronkee
Pint

Thanks

Well done el reg for whatever role your article may have played.

IT labor rights group files complaint against HCL, claiming it's clawing back bonuses

ronkee

The announcement was make in an email starting with "we are happy to announce..."

Shows bad faith right from the start.

Oh no, here we go again, groans the internet as AWS runs into IT problems. Briefly this time

ronkee

Growing pains?

Now would be the time for emergent unstable behaviour in massive distributed systems.

Capacity might be there but the network might be brittle.

AWS wobbles in US East region causing widespread outages

ronkee

It's interesting to see the wider single points of failure that crop up during an outage. We see support site and status pages going down. That's not well architected.

This also makes an argument for treating cloud as a utility.

AWS chops data transfer fees by massive extension of free tier – 2 months after rival previewed R2 Storage

ronkee

Re: "According to AWS chief evangelist Jeff Barr"

That's the other Jeff.

Oregon city courting Google data centers fights to keep their water usage secret

ronkee

Re: I don't think we're seeing the whole story, here

It's evaporative. Used in the condensers of the air conditioning.

Saves a lot of electricity. So it's an environmental trade off.

140,000-plus drivers sent $60m in compensation checks after Amazon 'stole their tips'

ronkee

When you withhold tips, you are also stealing from the customers who left the tip.

It's not just a contractual matter between the employer and the worker.

If I leave a tip for some reason, it was hard earned money being handed over because it is mine to do with as I see fit. It's no business of the employer to get in the way and whether the employee/contractor consents is irrelevant.

We'd see less of these abusive practices if we recognised them for what they are.

Facebook may soon reveal new name – we're sure Reg readers will be more creative than Zuck's marketroids

ronkee

Zuckerberg Information Technology

ronkee

Re: Better than Life

Call it Arnold Rimmer

https://youtu.be/r-ZiI3iVgpM

And now I can't unsee it Zuck and that Smeghead are linked forever in my mind's eye.

Google's VirusTotal reports that 95% of ransomware spotted targets Windows

ronkee

Re: Why this Obsession with Ransomware?

It's the breach that will get you sacked most easily. Customers are the ones who are obsessed with making the problem go away and many of them have budget from terrified executives.

Brewdog might make an OK pint but its security sucks: Flaw opened door to free beers for anyone

ronkee

Computers shipped requiring downloading updates from different places with different installers?

This is the long tail of poor security practises years ago and a broken user experience.

AWS US East region endures eight-hour wobble thanks to 'Stuck IO' in Elastic Block Store

ronkee

Re: might I suggest rotating your case about 180 degrees?

Get a USB hub and you wouldn't even need to go under your desk.

JEDI contract might be no more, but case should live on, says Oracle: DoD only wants Amazon, Microsoft for new cloud deal

ronkee

Re: Big Red

The old procurement has requirements 3-4 years old at this point, and it was controversial right from the start. A lot has changed and part of the justification for junking it was the fact that it's out of date.

JEDI was a dumpster fire, they should have gone for a clean slate. Starting off by trying to do basically the same thing was always going to just end up with more of the same.

It's procurement masochism.

Amazon UK business swelled by 50%+ in 2020, and taxes soared. Lol, no, it means those paid by its staff

ronkee

Re: Conflict of interest

The problem is the creative corporate structures designed to book revenue and expenses in high tax regimes so there are token profits (to limit outrage and allow then to say they pay some tax).

Then the low tax areas book particularly high profits.

Amazon pay exactly as much tax in Britain as they want to be seen to.

RIP Sir Clive Sinclair: British home computer trailblazer dies aged 81

ronkee

When I was a kid I wanted to be an inventor. Sir Clive was probably the only living one I could have named.

Even now we'd call them co-founders, but it's really not the same.

DoorDash, Grubhub, Uber Eats sue NYC for trying to permanently cap delivery fees

ronkee

Their contract with delivery companies prevents/severely limits them from offering collection discounts.

Same with all the middlemen. Hotels.com have a price promise with the customer and it's backed up by their contract with the hotel. Otherwise everyone would browse on the middleman platform and then go direct. Then the middlemen wouldn't have a business model. You can still do that but the hotel isn't allowed offer you a cheaper price ( unless you're a regular and you can call them to negotiate a discount).

ronkee

I agree, let them increase fees. Increasing fees would make them uncompetitive and people would just order direct from restaurants.

Restaurants higher margins would allow them to run cheaper takeaway menus, as many do or did.

Customers would pay the same, restaurants would get the same. Delivery services would get the same, if they were used.

But if it's 20% of a £50 order plus a £2.50 delivery charge, customers now have choice of paying £12.50 for delivery or picking it up themselves. Given a choice a lot of people would choose to keep their money. So the NYC proposal is very customer friendly, shame it didn't go far enough.

Funnily enough another benefit of removing restaurant delivery fees would be that far more restaurants would use those services. So more choice for customers, new customers for restaurants and more business (at lower margins) for delivery services.

Microsoft fixes flaw that could leak data between users of Azure container services

ronkee

Revoke credentials from August 31, presumably when mitigation started.

Tell users on 9 September to start the process of revoking credentials.

Not especially fast when the mitigation could have alerted someone with a zero day.

At least the really sensitive data probably wasn't in Container Services to begin with.

Talent shortage? Maybe it's your automated hiring system, lack of investment in training

ronkee

People still use job boards and company website listings?

I've spent plenty of time on those. Never got to offer stage, rarely made interview. Last 4 jobs were through network or recruiters.

Good guy Russia gives enterprises, cloud platforms a free brute-force security test using Kubernetes clusters

ronkee

Re: Some agencies have nothing better to do?

They're probably padding their CVs.

Azure's now-fixed Cosmos DB flaw could have been exploited to read, write any database

ronkee

It's an open source data science application, not a Microsoft trademark, not by Microsoft.

Microsoft, flush with cash, raises cloud office suite prices for businesses

ronkee

Cloud growth is accelerating!

AI to be bigger than IaaS and PaaS combined by 2025

ronkee

The sector growing 15.2% is going to rapidly outpace the sector growing 28%.

Someone got paid money for that?

Customers warn Gartner of AWS's high-pressure sales tactics in latest verdict on public cloud providers

ronkee

Re: Sales pressure

Or really alarming.

Gonna be harder to shug off cloud lock-in from now on.

Space programs ain't cheap.

AWS Free Tier, where's your spending limit? 'I thought I deleted everything but I have been charged $200'

ronkee

Hard limits are a big no with production.

They're only relevant for sandboxes and PoCs.

For their own billing purposes the different clouds will cut you off if you start spending too much. A sensible approach would be to set a spending limit for new accounts with some level of configurability.

e.g. accounts start with a $50/month limit. Like the way credit cards start with a low credit limit.

Apple sued in nightmare case involving teen wrongly accused of shoplifting, driver's permit used by impostor, and unreliable facial-rec tech

ronkee

Tuttle?

Or Buttle

Also a 4am arrest does sound like a nightmare.

US nuke agency hacked by suspected Russian SolarWinds spies, Microsoft also gets backdoored

ronkee

So they'll try turning Azure off and on again.