* Posts by 43300

1443 publicly visible posts • joined 3 Nov 2021

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Apple unveils M4 chip with neural engine capable of 38 TOPS, and some other kit

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I see you've got some downvotes (presumably from the Apple faithful?!)

I do agree with your point - given the price and hardware capabiities of these things, they should have MacOS (this is Apple, so it's not going to be anyone else's OS).

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Re: Thinnest

Thin and 13" doesn't sound like a good combination in terms of strength!

Who actually wants a 13" tablet anyway? One that size is unwieldy - beyond a screen size of about 11" a laptop is generally a better option.

Has Windows 11 really lost marketshare to Windows 10?

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Re: I took the plunge into Win 11

A good demonstration of why it's best to only install Insider builds on test machines / VMs, then! They are never a good idea if you want a stable system.

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Re: not a serious question

I think you missed the point that I was taking the piss...

Copilot is utterly pointless. One of the first things I did when it appeared as a taskbar icon in W11 was to work out how to deploy a policy to remove it (the icon and the desktop program) from all our machines.

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Re: I took the plunge into Win 11

W11 won't generally install the feature updates unless the hardware is compliant, so I doubt if the next feature update will break anything - they'll just stop updating once security updates for 23H2 end.

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"In a thread full of people whining about the continuing enshittification of Windows it is perfectly rational to present the possibility and benefits of a freely available alternative."

There are problems with all OSs. What gets irritating is that whenever any Microsoft problem is raised, the fanbois pop up to smugly tell us how they've moved to Linux and it's fantastic. Believe it or not, most of us on here know about Linux. We might well use it day to day as well as Windows (especially on servers). But many of us work in business IT departments, and in the majority of cases it is not a "possibility" to move wholesale to Linux.

And the fanbois normally don't actually "present the possibility and benefits of a freely available alternative" - they just smugly tell us that they now use Linux / it's fantastic / they have no intention of going back, etc, etc. They don't usually present any 'benefits', nor any of the issues (yes fanbois - Linux isn't perfect either!). Plus, they are also almost always telling us about a single home computer (or a handful of home computers), which is pretty much irrelevant to business IT (which is what this site is geared towards). If, of course, they had been involved in a project to roll out Linux to client machines at scale, and reported on the approach, the pros and cons, that may well be of relevance and interest. But a home user isntalling Ubuntu / Mint / whatever on a single computer in their spare bedroom isn't. We don't need to know.

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Re: Those numbers are clearly wrong

I rather doubt if enough people do that to make any noticeable difference to the starts - each percentage-point change in Windows users is going to be millions of computers.

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Good point, and it might work with laptops, but how do you tell whether a desktop is an AI PC given that the keyboard can be replaced? Does having a new keyboard with a Copilot key make it an AI PC? Questions, questions!

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Not sure what point you are making?

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I realise that this is probably an unrealistic hope, but is there any chance we could have a thread on Windows which doesn't consist of a load of people telling us 'just use Linux' / 'I moved to Linux and it's fantastic' / 'I installed Linux on my 105 year old great-aunt's 20 year old computer and she thinks it's great', etc, etc.

The Linux fanboyism on here gets utterly tiresome, Everyone on here knows about Linux. Many of us do use it (especially on the server side), but the reality of working in IT departments is that it's likely to have a heavy Microsoft component. This is not going to change, and as an IT department we cannot tell the organisation 'you're all using Linux now'. This is a site mainly aimed at IT Pros, who will be working with a variety of systems on a day to day basis and need to know about all of them.

If you want to go and congratulate yourselves on your fantastic decisions to move to Linux then no doubt there are Linux-specific forums where you can do that.

The Linux fanbois seem to be have become even more repetitive and predictable than the Apple ones...

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Re: "what happens next?"

"Who would fancy the job of going to the beancounters to tell them they have to budget for replacing a fleet of PCs in good shape and working well before the H/W hits physical EoL just because Microsoft says so?"

That ain't going to happen assuming the computers are mostly going to be on 3 to 5 year replacement cycles (as will be the case in most medium and large organisations) - computers which are five years old now will nearly all be capable of running W11, and there is still 18 months to go yet until W10 hits end of support.

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Re: The flagship OS and its hardware requirements

We buy Dells, and never use the stadard image - too much shite, even on the business machines. Best policy is a wipe and reinstall / reimage with generic MS install media (or an image built from generic MS Install media).

The Pro OEM licenses of Windows allow downgrade so buying them with W11 Pro then wiping them and putting W10 Pro on is perfectly within the rules.

We are nearly entirely W11 now (last few W10 machines expected to be withdrawn within the next few weeks). Does it offer any major advantages? No, not really, but it's not horrendous, and as much of our hardware supported it we decided to go for it - managed in place upgrades with a lot of the machines (which worked with no issues in most cases), and replaced the remaining W10 machines which didn't meet the hardware requirements as they reached end of life. This did give a much longer overlap than I would have liked (in the past we've done OS switchovers within three months or so - this was over a year), but it's not given any major problems.

Basic reason for the lack of interest seems to be that W11 doesn't offer any major feature advances. I doubt if the hardware requirements are much of an issue in businesses now as most will be on a maximum of five years in the renewal cycle, and anything which doesn't meet the requirements is likely to be a fair bit beyond that now. It is going to be more of an issue with home users, though, who tend to keep computers much longer and use them less.

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"However, businesses not caught up in the hype are also all too aware that buying an AI PC is a risky prospect right now."

Sorry, I don't agree. An 'AI PC' is just a reasonably-specced PC using modern components. It's going to be perfectly capable of all the things you might want to use a computer for, even if (as is likely) the AI hype isn't on your radar.

Palantir's CEO calls 'woke' a 'central risk to Palantir, America and the world'

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Why don't you actually engage in an articulate discussion rather than throwing petty insults around?

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Re: Hope he goes broke for not being woke

It's not "our" NHS - that's just a government propaganda term. The NHS exists largely to serve itself, as tends to happen with massive state bodies.

Which isn't to say that there aren't plenty of good staff within it - there are - but the organisation itself is bloated, inefficient and largely unaccountable (as anyone who has been through the dispiriting complaints processes, with their interminable delays and eventual fob-offs which contradict the facts, will know!).

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Re: What is “woke”

Ok, I'm looking from a UK perspective but I really don't see why Trump inspires so much hatred on one side, and so much adulation on the other. If you look objectively at his first term as president, it's fairly unremarkable. He wasn't a great president, but neither was he an especially awful one. He didn't start any major conflicts, for a start!

Is it mainly just because he's regarded by many as having an extremely abrasive personality?

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Re: What is “woke”

As regards separation of races / ethnicicities / sexual orientations - that's exactly what I was referring to. The woke define people by one charaterisitic (that person is black, that person is gay, etc) and group them based on this single charateristic, then assume that they automatically have a lot in common with others who share that single characteristic (which they may not), and then put these groups into hierarchies, and sets them against each other. It's ignorant and simplistic - and this is especially so in the UK with concepts imported from the US where politics and social dynamics are very different. Thus we have talk of 'white privilege' as if it's a universal - when in fact, in the UK, young white blokes from working-class backgrounds are one of the least privileged of all groups by most measures. Or the assumption that women are under-represented in a particular sector and need special treatment (courses only open to female staff, etc) even when a look at the actual employment stats for the sector show that this is not the case and women are actually the majority, including at senior level. But the woke don't look at specifics or see nuance - everything is seen in terms of hierarchies based on simplistic categories and labelling of people.

The equality movement started out with the admirable aim of providing equality of opportunity for all. That isn't what wokery (and it's relative, EDI) is about at all - they seek equality of outcome, measured solely on the basis of which arbitrary groups they have assigned people to. Actual equality is regarding these things as irrelvant for most purposes - e.g. when interviewing for a job, choose the best candidate in terms of meeting the job criteria. Male/female, black/white, gay/straight, etc - they shouldn't be a consideration in making the decision.

Attaining a better level of actual equality across society is not going to be achieved by dividing people, and wokery is all about creating division.

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Re: What is “woke”

"Woke is treating your fellow humans as if they're, you know, human."

It's not - it's categorizing people into groups, normally based on a single characteristic, then forming a hierarchy of groups and setting various of those groups against one another. While claiming to be about being 'kind', 'inclusive', etc. And spitting hatred at anyone who questions any of the woke dogma, of course.

It's an utterly corrosive ideology which claims to be about fairness and unity but actually causes division and hostility.

Council claims database pain forced it to drop apostrophes from street names

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Re: Stupid

"Remove the punctation from the data base but retain it on the printed road signs. A bit of common sense, or is that asking too much from the council mind?"

That would confuse poscode and delivery systems!

Just keep the apostrophes everywhere. It's not hard to design systems which can cope with it - CRM databases have to cope with it as there are plenty of surnames wich contain an apostrophe.

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Re: Tail wags dog

"Consider yourself lucky. At least your metropolitan council is named after a place within it. I live in Kirklees, the council area, not the actual Kirklees which is in Calderdale."

It actually hard to see the logic with the naming of either of those. All of the West and South Yorkshire unitary authorities have one place in them which is by a considerable margin the largest, and with most of them the authority is named after that place - Sheffield, Rotherham, Doncaster, Barnsley, Wakefield, Leeds, Bradford. Logically, the other two should have been Huddersfield and Halifax rather than Kirkless and Calderdale.

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Re: Tail wags dog

"I have to put up with being governed by the Bradford Metropolitan District Council..Jumped up fucking pricks who spend taxpayers money into oblivion."

Doesn't that apply to pretty much all local authorities?

I do remember that on crossing the border into BMDC territory in 2020, all the pavements had one-way arrows tied to their lamp posts - wonder how much that cost? In N Yorks we somehow coped without those.

I wasn't aware of the fuckwittery with apostrophes in road names though - their policy simply suggests that they are illiterate. Things have been going downhill in North Yorkshire since all the district councils were merged into one unitary authority - North Yorkshire is large (the largest English county) and has several distinct regions which have little in common with each other. From one of the places on the far west to one on the coast is a bit over a hundred miles; in much of England that would take you through several counties.

Meta, Spotify break Apple's device fingerprinting rules – new claim

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"Google is worth at least a couple billion in revenue for Apple with the default search engine deal and probably some other things. Facebook also likely pays Apple some kickbacks to make sure Facebook always appears at the top of curated lists on the App Store, and Spotify also has to be worth a decent chunk of change from the cut of subscription fees Apple takes."

Google and Arsebook - yeah, agreed. Wouldn't expect them to be so keen on Spotify though as that's a direct competitor to Apple Music,

Dating apps kiss'n'tell all sorts of sensitive personal info

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Yes, and the concept of not collecting data unless there's a good reason which can be clearly explained (and especially so when it's special category information such as medical data) is often one which is hard to get people to understand!

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Indeed. The ICO seems to mostly go after some little bloke / woman who did something they probably shouldn't do with some data, frequently just through ignorance of the rules rather than any ill-intent, and which caused nobody any issues.

They ignore the blatant way in which large companies fail to comply. In particular, the 'legitimate interet' justification for data processing which gets stretched well beyond breaking point on a regular basis and rarely does any company get pulled up for it.

AWS promotes itself as alternative to its own VMware service

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"Amazon Web Services is doing something rather odd – promoting itself as a migration target for users of its own VMware Cloud on AWS service."

Not sure why it's odd - the Broadcom takeover of VMWare has made everyone wary. Plus by hosting direct on AWS, Amazon then controls and owns the whole stack without any of the customer payments going to a third party hypervisor provider.

Ten years ago Microsoft bought Nokia's phone unit – then killed it as a tax write-off

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Re: Software updates

"With the exception of my very very first mobile back in the mid-90s (which wasn't available SIM-free), every phone I've ever bought was paid for outright. Rolling the costs into a monthly subscription was, and is, a mug's game; you inevitably ended up paying more that way."

Yep, always the same whenever I price it up. Same with business contracts too - I deal with those at work and every time I review it when the contract's up for renewal, the basic SIM-only contract (and buy the handsets outright from Ebyuer, etc) always works out cheaper - usually by a fair amount too.

People do seem willing to spend a lot on phones (mostly via contracts) though. Over the years I've seen a number of colleagues who won't be earning large salaries but have top-end iPhones. A fair chunk of their income must be going on that mobile contract!

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Re: "The... Maemo operating system failed to take off"

We had Windows phones at work - I liked them, and for the basic requirements of most users (email, bit of web browsing, calls and texts) they were fine, and the GUI was easier to use than the versions of Android at the time.

It unfortunately became clear that Microsoft wasn't putting any effort into developing it, and that it was probably going to get the chop. As indeed happened.

Apple confirms iPadOS will fall under its Alternative Business Terms in the EU

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Re: Working != Updates

Yes, and it's also about compliance - cyber insurance policies normally specifically state that software must be in-support and kept patched.

Windows users left to fend for themselves after BitLocker patch bungle

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I've just done it on a W10 machine. Bloody hell, that was fiddly. The OS parititon wouldn't resize despite having sufficient free space (data towards the end, I assume). Fortunately, there were two recovery partitions - a not uncommon finding as with typical M$ untidiness if one of the feature updates decided the partition was too small, it just created another one and left the old one there too. Did work in my favour here, as by removing both of them I was able to create enough space to create a new partition which was large enough, and then to install the patch.

In order to do this and get it right, you really do need to understand the concept of partitions and get the right one each time when using Diskpart operations. The idea that it's appropriate to get non-technical users to try this is frankly ridiculous. It would be so easy to competely fuck the OS by nuking the wrong partition.

Forums report the issue with the OS partition refusing to resize and suggest GParted - which I would have had to resort to if there hadn't been the dual recovery partitions. GParted is great (used it a number of times) but it really isn't a tool suitable for use by the majority of users - it's primailry for IT techs.

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Two points:

1) It also affects Server 2022. Pissing around with parittions on servers is clearly not something most admins want to be doing

2) It never appeared through WSUS. I'm 99% sure this is 'never' rather than 'pulled quickly' as I normally download them and push them out to some test machines within minutes of them being released - and it wasn't there. It does however try to install on servers which are not managed by WSUS. This is turn suggests that M$ may have known about the issues with it before they even released it as normally updates appear in WSUS at the same time as they become available through unmanged updating.

Microsoft doesn't want cops using Azure AI for facial recognition

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Quite. And the more shadowy world of spooks and GHCQ will also no doubt be keen on this sort of technology.

Not a Genius move: Resurrecting war hero Alan Turing as your 'chief AI officer'

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Re: In my experience...

Why do people feel the need to defend their favourite multinational corporation? (this mostly happens when it's Apple, it has to be said).

I don't make any effort to go in their shops. If they've brought new models of computer out and I happen to be passing the shop in the nearest large city I might wander in for a look - that's as far as it goes.

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Re: In my experience...

Apple's ethos does seem to force their retail staff to behave like arseholes, even if they are by nature reasonable people!

i.e. the terminology - 'genius', 'genius bar', and the relenless irritating and clearly scripted sales patter.

EU duties might not be enough to hold off flood of Chinese EVs

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Re: the problem

I certainly don't trust official positions where there is good reason to doubt them - the government is not your friend, neither are large coporations! I also don't trust the mainstream media as they simply parrot official lines (BBC), with a slant towards their readership as required (Guardian to the left, Telegraph to the right, etc).

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Re: the problem

No idea - never watched it.

I assume that you are the typical head-in-the-sand type who brands everyone who doesn't trust official positions on things as 'far right'?

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Re: Protectionism is not the way to get more EVs on the roads

Bugger all chance of that in the UK, especially outside of large cities. The occasional bus if you are lucky, and grotty, overpriced trains (on those few days when one group or other of railway staff aren't on strike due to the disputes which the government are clearly stringing out indefinitely).

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Re: the problem

China is just further down the road - there is no doubt that the UK and the USA are heading in the same direction. The politicians are a bit more subtle about it because these are alleged deocracies (i.e. we get to choose between two awful options which are nearly the same anyway every few years), but the trajectory is basically the same.

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Re: I'll stick with diesel if it's all the same to you

"If you have a small car and ‘don’t drive it much’ an EV small car you ‘don’t drive much’ will also last 20 years."

It won't - Lithium batteries deteriorate over time even if they don't go through that many charge cycles. After 20 years (or well before that) it's likely to be pretty much buggered.

And when I do use the car, it's mostly in a very rural area. The nearest public chargers are going to be miles and miles away, and if roads get closed the detours can be massive.

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Re: the problem

Yep, all those big corporations the world over are slurping all that data purely so that they can provide you withn an excellent service, of course...

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Re: I'll stick with diesel if it's all the same to you

The virtue signallers! i.e. a high proportion of people who buy an EV of their own volition (as in not due to a company car scheme).

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Re: I'll stick with diesel if it's all the same to you

I've got a small 15 year old petrol car. Don't drive much, and it's perfectly adequate. How is it "green" to throw away cars after 8-10 years? Even if they aren't used much, the battery is going to deteriorate significantly because that's what happens with that type of battery.

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The irony won't stop the virtue signallers from droning on about how "environmentally conscious" they are for buying a massive electric SUV, though!

Got an old Raspberry Pi spare? Try RISC OS. It is, literally, something else

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I knew it well when I was a teenager (would have been version 3 / 3.1) - the user interface really was leagues ahead of the mainstream competition at the time.

Bill advances to exonerate hundreds in Post Office Horizon scandal

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Even if there might be a very small number who were guilty of something, how can a fair trial ever be possible now, given that the Horizon data (which would inevitably form a major part of the evidence) is known to be hopelessly unreliable?

The only sensible course of action is to overturn all the convictions based entirely or largely on Horizon data. And no-retrials.

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Yes, quite - politicians absolutely love being able to grandstand about a 'new law' even if there isn't a need for one and existing laws cover what is required.

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Private Eye has been highlighting it for years, too.

I agree that the television brought it to the notice of a wider public (who don't know or believe anything unless it's on the box), but despite this I think it unlikely that the government would be so keen to suddenly take action if there wasn't an election soon.

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The government's renewed interest in tackling this issue (which they should have tackled several years ago) will of course be completely unrelated to there being a general election due this year...

Microsoft confesses April Windows update breaks some VPN connections

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Perhaps the thumb-downer could explain where my understanding of the situation is faulty? From the reports here (and the Microsoft advisory, which I have also seen) it appears that the issue doesn't appear unless this patch is applied. Given that the patch is not available for Server 2008, how is that going to be affected by the issue?

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The problem only seems to arise though when the patch is installed, so if there's no patch, this particular issue presumably won't arise? i.e. it's the patch which, in one way or another, triggers the problem?

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"Microsoft noted that the problem might also occur on its server platforms, from Windows Server 2008"

Which is outside of even the most extended-extended support (i.e. running it on Azure). So if you install the patch which wasn't issued anyway, it might cause the listed problem. Right. Gotcha!

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