* Posts by JamesTGrant

93 publicly visible posts • joined 18 Aug 2021


Amazon drivers unionize after AI sends them on 'impossible' routes


Mmm - there’s an idea, a ‘scenic route’ setting (yours appears to be in that mode already…)

Dead people could be designated authors of Atlassian Confluence docs and that can't be changed


Re: If you ignore a problem long enough

Ah Mr Bond….

Yeah, we'll just take that first network handshake. What could possibly go wrong?


Re: The guiding principle

I remember first hearing about ‘Jason documents’ - there was only one Jason in R&D at the time and I thought it very odd that all of a sudden people were parsing Jason’s documents, he suddenly seemed very prolific!


Re: The guiding principle

Core dump? Crumbs, that’d be bad - you’ll be wanting to suppress that!!

If a tree falls in the forest….

Bill Gates venture backs effort to bring aircon startup to market


Re: Smoothing of use rather than cost??

Oh no Bob, I’m disappointed! It’s easy to take a running nuclear power station and have it contribute zero to the grid. It’s using the nuclear bit for heat (for pressure) to turn a turbine. That pressure need not be used, nor the turbine engaged, nor the output of the turbine connected to anything.

FYI: BMW puts heated seats, other features behind paywall


Dave at the garage can sort you out

For a small one off fee…

San Francisco cops want real-time access to private security cameras for surveillance


Re: Do they not know how CCTV works?

CSI - best hacking scene on telly ever, all done in less than 1min, two people on the same keyboard typing independently at the same time - but only on their side of the keyboard, loads of jibberish, screens with pop ups appearing and disappearing,

hack is thwarted by unplugging the monitor… Basically a documentary.


Microsoft resorts to Registry hack to keep Outlook from using Windows 11 search


Re: Borkzilla has never understood search

Agree - ‘everything’ by Void tools is utterly brilliant. What I don’t understand is how it can be so good when the Windows built-in indexing and searching is so slow and resource intensive.

Visual Studio Code Server untethers developers from their workstations


What editor do you prefer?

Personally, I think VSC is really good and very versatile (apart from the ‘open folder in current window’ messing up currently open terminal sessions) and getting better all the time.

Broadcom's VMware buy got you worried? Give these 5 FOSS hypervisors a spin


My answer: there are lots of tools, if you go for a paid for hypervisor then the tooling will be supplied by the vendor. If not, you’ll need to use one of the several available FOSS utilities, but you first need to export your ESXi VM in EXACTLY the right format for the tool to be able to do it’s thing. Things like guest HDD file format, secure boot, and guest BIOS/UFEI seem to cause headaches for many of the conversation tools. Even when the tool outputs an image you’ll find things like the network interfaces may get messed up. These are a problems that OVF is intended to improve, but we’re not there yet! Once you’ve got a good set of steps, it’s easy. Finding the right set of steps is a little time consuming, and changes over time, and careful testing of the end VM will be required.


I think the article was good but ‘replace VMWare’ is quite an ambiguous statement!

The hypervisor layer, for a Windows shop the choice is easy enough - Hyper-V, until the estate is more than a few boxes and then the ‘grown up’ VM manager (often called ‘the control plane software’) is pricey. It’s all very Windows-y with the need to use powershell on the cli being almost unavoidable.

Linux - KVM is a good choice - it supports running several different guest operating systems (such as Windows). Handy if you want a Linux VM on an existing Linux host. KVM is a Linux kernel module so it’s very convenient for a developer with a few development hosts, but it’s not (on its own) ‘just’ a hypervisor. However, there a a ton of companies selling what is essentially a distro which includes the components to run KVM and not much else, which is branded the ‘hypervisor product’. Generally, you need a vendo’s hyper visor product in order to integrate easily into the control plane s/w which is the part where you’ll need to open your wallet. There are lots of good control plane options.

Xen-ng - is great hypervisor but Xen-orchestra ’free’ doesn’t include the ability to schedule full VM backups, so the right license will be required for anyone managing other folk’s VMs and that’ll cost you (a lot less than vCenter!!).

QEMU is an emulator, not a hypervisor - and last time I used it, a pain to get working well. In practice - I can’t think of a good reason I’d consider QEMU if I was starting a new project. I certainly wouldn’t consider it as VMWare replacement as it isn’t in the same functional realm as ESXi - because it’s a different thing.

Hope that helps answer your questions.

This is the military – you can't just delete your history like you're 15


Re: We've Probably All Come Across This

The first rule of Tautology Club is the first rule of Tautology Club!


IT reseller giant SHI International knocked offline by cyberattack


Maybe working in their IT dept is too demoralising… “Hello, SHI IT department…”

Pentester says he broke into datacenter via hidden route running behind toilets


Re: False floors too

About 2ft


Re: This is just taking the piss.

The police investigating say they’ve nothing to go on…

British Army Twitter and YouTube feeds hijacked by crypto-promos


Re: Building bridges?

I cybered so hard my cyber cybered

China is trolling rare-earth miners online and the Pentagon isn't happy


Re: What a weird influence campaign

Suspect it’s about trying to keep your customers remaining dependent. Which, if those customers are nationally significant, is a deterrent to doing anything other than sabre rattling. Also, it’s very cheap to do - where is that XKCD…


Re: The Pentagon

I thought; ‘disinformation and China in the same article - VoT’s keyword alert will be triggered!! Stand by for VoT’s supervisor to post something banal and probably full of tangential whataboutisms’ Did not disappoint.

Xi Jinping himself weighs in on how Big Tech should deploy FinTech


Or ‘VP of something or another’ as our American colleagues would have it.

I’ve a theory that everyone knows that ‘leveraging synergies’ is a phrase that you only say to tell people that you’ve transcended into the nonsense tier of the business world and you’re no longer one of the useful members of your community or actually involved in any process that creates anything the business does that makes money. A ‘screw you little people’ and a ‘I’m in the big boy club’ statement - a ‘flex’ as the kids probably don’t say any longer.

I would almost rather that, than anybody thinking that it’s a useful thing to say or write.

Bipolar transistors made from organic materials for the first time


Re: Durability?

The dogtor will see you now.

GitHub's AI code assistant Copilot takes flight. And that'll be $10 a month, please


“You want a quote with your closing quote?””

SpaceX staff condemn Musk's behavior in open letter


Re: More than anything

Well it’s not like it’s brain surgery…

Linux Mint adopts Timeshift from overworked original developer


It’s nothing you couldn’t do…

By spending a LOT of time doing development, including a huge amount of testing. Or you could lash some BASH together in the hope that whatever causes you to need your backup is a use case your DIY scripts don’t fail to cope with. Two reasons not to - a) hopefully your time is more valuable to you. b) if you’ve gone to the trouble then your data is valuable to you.

I could probably build a combi boiler or a motor car out of scraps but (IMO) it’s a much better investment of my time to buy one and that’s also less likely to kill everyone in the house.

Linux Lite 6.0: It's quite pretty, but 'lite' it is not


Re: Interesting article, one question

Thank you for replying!

Thumb Up

Interesting article, one question

Appreciate the article and the screenshot - hadn’t heard of this distro before, learned a new thing. Qq - you say the install occupies approx 6GB - I’m wondering if that’s due to partitions created to prevent filling a partition from hosing the OS (in which case, is it light weight but with some pragmatism to protect the human user, or if there’s 6GB of ‘stuff’ - if so, what ‘stuff’? Anyway, nice article

UK Home Office awards Oracle a deal extension worth tens of millions


Actually, £250 per person per year… sounds almost reasonable!

£35 million - 4 years, 35000 staff… £250per person per year?

Buoyant tech sector bucking the UK trend, says consultancy


Re: Atrocious

On top of NI, there is Council tax (you have to live somewhere!!), and if you have a car (which is still required for many people) car/road tax. Then tax on fuel/petrol/diesel then and also MOT. The tax we pay on gas (for cooking/heating) and electric for our homes (even in a small flat) isn’t small change. So by the time you work out what your unavoidable tax burden is as a U.K.-based employee (even before 20% VAT on goods and services) it’s a LOT.

Not grumbling but it’s one of the reasons people get so annoyed with government spending choices like when there’s some IT contract worth 100s of millions goes to Fujitsu or IBM or (etc etc) (who will mess it up) when folk like my wife (Community Occupational Therapist) in the NHS got a hard won… 1% pay rise last year. Or the apparent inability to tax massively profitable companies like Amazon in any fair way compared to any other businesses making money in the U.K.

Actually, maybe I am having a grumble.

HP turns back on $1b in annual sales by quitting Russia and Belarus


Re: Gotta love headline wording, HP turned back on....

Ooo good spot, I am steeped in my upbringing and the idiom ‘to turn one’s back’ is so common that I missed the actual title, there’s a subject but no explicit possessive element in the sentence so ‘back’ as a adverb rather than noun is a very natural reading. ‘Turn back to’ is literally ‘return to’ in this context.

Let's play everyone's favorite game: REvil? Or Not REvil?


Larry Cashdollar? Huh

Safari is crippling the mobile market, and we never even noticed


Re: Crap article

And only Earth teams are allowed in the World Cup

Microsoft Bing censors politically sensitive Chinese terms


Re: Citizen Lab

I’ve a theory…

The usual VoT person that’s charged with monitoring El Reg has become more nuanced and appreciative of the commentades offbeat humour (with a u!!). This guy likes UNIX and dislikes choice (duplicated effort) in Linux distros (even though people are often doing this because they enjoy it - nothing wrong with that!). Whenever the regular person spots an article whose topic is vaguely related to some list of key words, it is flagged to the FUD person who then uses the account to write a comment, often without really reading the article, hence the duality and the context free (as per this article’s comment) vitriol.

Can I claim a prize?

Lonestar plans to put datacenters in the Moon's lava tubes


Re: It will be running Ubuntu?

Did think that was a rather specific detail and out of all the questions I have, I now have another one - why Ubuntu. Why not something a little more ‘big iron’ (actually how about real iron core storage? Or stone tablets)

Seriously, you do not want to make that cable your earth


Re: Bee-sting ?

‘Boring’ name - very good, very good

FreeBSD 13.1 is out for everything from PowerPC to x86-64


Re: About the word 'distro'

I didn’t know this - excellent info!

The sad state of Linux desktop diversity: 21 environments, just 2 designs


Re: The curse of overchoice

Next time I’m going to blame it on the sock puppet


Re: The curse of overchoice

Ever bought a car? Are you sure you got the right one?

Anatomy of a campaign to inject JavaScript into compromised WordPress sites


Re: Makes me yearn for GeoCities...

Loads very quickly!!! I’m disappointed it didn’t have a twinkly background - the peak of html prowess!!

Rackspace considers selling part of business: 'Everything' on the table


Sounds like C suite want to cash out

‘Everything is on the table’ - sounds like a very publicly announced retirement plan to me.

Microsoft tests ‘Suggested Actions’ in Windows 11. Insiders: Can we turn it off?


Re: Oh god, no...

You want a closing quote? How about a closing quote for your closing quote? Oh the linter is now unhappy…


Rocky Linux sponsor CIQ secures $26m funding for CentOS successor


Re: Source of the source ?

So, you wanna build a distro… You’ll need to interface with BIOS/UEFI perhaps GRUB2 is a good choice - source code on GitHub (a few different flavours/repos). You’ll need some sort of filesystem wrangler LLVM is a good choice (GitHub). You’ll need a kernel - again either kernel archive or GitHub. You’ll need a compiler and tool chain to build the source code for the hardware you want it to run on- clang and GCC is a decent choice (GitHub) and a base clibrary like glibc which is available from ftp or from gnu git repo. Then you probably want to think about an init system - sysv (several places) or systemd (GitHub) are commonly used choices. Then some utilities like common GNU utilities like ls, cd, cat (gnu svn or ftp). Some package manager like rpm or deb and a means to pull and manage such as yum dnf or apt (various repos including GitHub). Probably pick a shell (BASH being a solid choice - gnu.org repos). Pick (or not) a means to provide a GUI, lots of choices (westland/gnome etc etc). You’ll want some scripts to lash some things together and provide config files and bits and bobs (you’ll want a text editor such as nano (gnu git) or vim (or… emacs if you are a wizard). You want ti include applications such as OpenSSH (loads of ftp mirrors). Once you’ve collected all the components you can package them together and host them, or link to them. You probably also want some infrastructure to host all the packages at versions you support in a location accessible to your package manager. Now you have a distro and means to provide s/w packages to it. It’s ALL open source, all of it. There’s also nothing stopping you from including what folk refer to as ‘binary blobs’ (proprietary, precompiled code usually for hardware interfaces) - provided you (as the distro provider) sort out an agreement with the owner/license holder. Once your operating system environment is up and running, Your user is plenty able to install compiled code such as paid-for closed source s/w of which there is plenty!

Now, let’s say that you are really good at testing all the combinations of the software that you include against all the hardware configurations you support. And let’s say that your customers appreciate the ability to call you up, or to have you investigate some problem, or support some bit of hardware - that sounds like something that you could charge for as a service, or a one-off fee for ‘providing’ the distro. That’s what companies like Ubuntu and Redhat offer (Ubuntu also provide the s/w without support, which is jolly decent of them). Or, you could provide all this hard work ‘for free’ in return for access to other peoples hard work, or simply because you like the idea of contributing something into the world that other people may find useful.

Will that do for a link?

Asahi Linux project shows progress in graphics drivers on Apple's M1


Re: Worth the effort?

It’s interesting and someone or some people are enjoying it. More power to them! Why the hate? Is it wasteful for musicians to learn the same instruments and playing the same music that other people already play, or for there to be different styles of music, or fashion, for people to make models of things that are already built. Or read or write books that others will never read.

Picking a distro you like is pretty easy if you know what requirements you have then you can rule some in/out, if you don’t have requirements then pick the nicest looking logo - easier than picking a pair of jeans or shoes!

Only Microsoft can give open source the gift of NTFS. Only Microsoft needs to


Re: It's the same old story with Linux - it's just one more thing

I don’t understand why you post nonsense here - your GPL understanding is way off and the basic facts about Linux kernel commits by number of commits or lines changed is garbage (and very easy to verify). For example; for kernel version 5.10 RedHat contribution by change sets was 5.7% of total change, and by lines changed 3.9%, just higher than ‘Code Aurora Forum’. Even if you add IBM and RedHat together, the combined contribution is so far away from majority as to be a bonkers statement. Trend the contribution by vendor upto kernel version 5.17 and you see lumps per vendor but no one vendor contribution greater than 10%. Perhaps you’re thinking about systemd, which is not kernel? Please don’t make El Reg comments section less fun, coz that’s what you’re doing with highly agendaed (that’s a word now) bad facts posts.

Microsoft points at Linux and shouts: Look, look! Privilege-escalation flaws here, too!



I second that motion Your Honour

Microsoft dogs Strontium domains to stop attacks on Ukraine


Cool, but why are Microsoft doing this?

I’m wondering what business reason or mandate Microsoft have to do this. Presumably nothing here is related to Microsoft operated infrastructure or Microsoft deployed and owned s/w? Not saying I disagree with what they are doing just wondering what their rationale is. Anyone got any more details?

AlmaLinux OS Foundation welcomes AMD to the fold


An honest question

Alma is a CentOS replacement and so is a distro that packages all the same bits and bobs as RHEL, but they are building a community. To do what? Lobby IBM/RedHat into making choices that the community want? If RHEL decided to do something unpalatable (or insanely customer hostile) in RHEL 8.6, then Alma (and Rocky) would presumably have to follow along regardless even if it resulted in the end of any community or commercial interest in the project?

BTW been using Alma for a few months and it’s fine - still annoying that loads of applications are so out-of-date (thanks RedHat) and the USB live install-only is irritating. But it’s totally alright - Alma team have done a really great job!!

AMD confirms Ryzen chips' stuttering performance on Windows 10, 11


Re: For my education

If you’re doing something that requires key generation and key storage then it’s pretty handy (ie; encryption). Assuming that you and your customers trust it more than the alternative (which is HDD based)

Linux kernel edges closer to dropping ReiserFS


Would 100% use the UPS backed coffee machine

In a power cut I’d have thought a nice cup of coffee was page 1, front and center, if the business continuity manual. I’d even spec the UPS for it!

(Typical server spec 400watts, need to keep it running for 1hour? Coffee machine, say 1kW for 5min? Cheapy UPS can wheeze out 6A (just about) so, provided you don’t mind no network or monitor, you’ll enjoy a nice coffee in the dark whilst the server room gets nice and toasty.

Intel energizes decades-old real-time Linux kernel project


Re: So, two people in their spare time

Feels like there’s a few thousand things each with a few key folk - but, that’s ok if the thing is open source. Better that than a few thousand things produced by mega corps with obliquely available complied code with companies disappearing or being acquired and dissolved and code/knowledge disappearing.

The good thing about the open source building blocks is that most of it is very readable, the most genius code is often eminently readable, the brilliance being that it very neatly solves a problem and allows the reader to follow along and understand - even if the original implementation required deep and clever original thinking and wizzy efficient coding, once it’s done, it’s a solved problem and hopefully maintenance is about environment/api evolution.