Re: Uber are trying to be two different things
UK London at least we have two different forms of taxi.
Fixed it for you...
2808 posts • joined 15 Mar 2007
UK London at least we have two different forms of taxi.
Fixed it for you...
One aspect about the various changes in regulation that are mooted is they are stupidly reactionary: they see (picking Uber for argument's sake) the business practice and they try to target that.
What they ought to be doing for everyone's sake is to identify why such regulation ought to exist, and make sure it applies to Uber as for any other taxi company. For example, most people are not in favour of cartels and other "closed shop" arrangements that serve to protect a few, but they are in favour of, for example, making sure that cars and drivers are in fit condition and fully covered by insurance. Simply putting that onus on Uber alone would be a step towards a level playing field.
OK, it may not address all of the issues, for example, to keeping universally available service, but unless that is also explicitly imposed by the existing taxi license holders its a hard sell to argue against Uber on that point. Legislate for social outcomes, not business methods, etc.
They should have gone for good pr0n. Much nicer to keep dreaming about for months afterwards :)
OK, maybe not the S&M sort =>
Most people don't want a new OS, or a new PC, as such: they just think its a way to stop the current one sucking so badly.
Like not putting crap like these things on your corporate LAN? Have another IP range for them without Internet access nor much internal access so only the security desk PC can record/view the cameras?
Oh and while you are at it, partition your network to put printers, etc, that have web servers and other crap that is never patched on to a similar restricted zone...
I noticed that when trying to update a W7 VM a week or so ago, even an hour or two later - no patches apparently downloaded. Gave up and shut the VM down as I only needed it due to the incompetence of VMware management where they need flash 11.5.+ but Adobe only offer 11.2.+ now for Linux.
WTF #1 needing flash for anything
WTF #2 not using a version that is available on most server-room platforms
WTF #3 was added in 11.2 -> 11.5 that mattered?
Have an up-vote from me. Seems people don't like your sort of realism on the situation.
I really liked w2k and paid full price. I found XP tolerable after 'classic mode' enabled (and more secure with SP3), hated my few experiences with Vista (mostly sitting around waiting for it to complete updates etc) and while 7 looked a competent fix for Vista, by then I had given up on Windows as primary OS.
There was a time when gaining access to one's WiFi password was but a minor annoyance if others free-loaded off your connections. Of course these days it seems they could then screw over all of the piss-poor security in IoT and SOHO equipment inside your home without having to leave their van*
[*] Other transport options are available, assuming they are not dumb enough to live next door and have no getaway plan on discovery.
Depending on your data volume, how about a 2nd NAS off-site. First sync it locally, then use rsync or similar to copy over changes every so often. If your NASs support snapshots (e.g. FreeNAS using ZFS) then you can replicate a snapshot without worrying about changes mid-backup. Also ZFS snapshots take almost no space, only the *changes* need it, so you can have a scheduled snapshot regime to deal with cryptolocker virus, etc.
If that is not viable, and your data totals less then a few TB, then just get a few USB HDD and cycle them round syncing to your NAS. Set up an encrypted file system if you want, of course, buf if the risk of loss of password and/or FS support is greater than the data value and physical security risk, then don't. Your call...
"I don't see what all the fuss is about with Win10 (privacy aside)"
Well if you can temporarily ignore being whored out by your OS, then the invasive pushing of "updates" where they are not needed, but simple serve to let MS whore you more effectively, is a reason to create a fuss.
"If you hate MS that much then maybe you should try a Linux distro."
I grew to hate MS (or at least the corporate actions, some products they do are pretty good) and did, never looked back really. Yes its true that Linux occasionally sucks donkey balls, but I find them smaller and less throat-blocking than recent MS OS when I am no longer really in charge of what the software does (DRM, product activation, etc).
How they create Tactical Nuclear Penguin "beer"
Its fine for a handful of work-related sites where you might, say, want to have a corporate tool for local and remote site password management.
But not for personal stuff for exactly this reason, just like Farcebook wanting to provide log-in and tracking so it can whore you more effectively to any advertisers (and, of course, the US gov). What is needed is something like a password manager that makes 3rd party tracking hard because its not "owned" by anyone other then yourself. So something, for example, like a bluetooth dongle built in to a (otherwise dumb) watch that also needs a master password each pairing time so its mostly with you and not terribly useful if found/stolen.
Works for my old man, has Ubuntu+Gnome for the main desktop (thus email & web access) and a Windows XP VM to run some old & flaky genealogy program that is main computer use-case these days.
I get about 1-2 calls per year to support it, which is a damn sight less than I used to get from certain others running Windows...
So. Fscking. Predictable.
What about Windows ME?
I don't have any HRDCP 2.2 need now, or in the immediate future, but I am sorely tempted to buy one of these simply to piss Intel & Warner off.
In the past decade or so the only major trouble I have ever had when installing or updating systems has been crappy video drivers. Both Linux and Windows.
A pox on them all!
One of the guys in the networking department where I work explained it thus: Change management provides me with no immediate advantage in having to fill out the request forms, etc, but it provides me with plenty of benefits when others do it. And vice-versa.
Knowing what was changed and when, and having easy ways of rolling back (e.g. snapshots of file systems and configs, etc) is a huge advantage if what you do really matters.
Wristwatch? I have never lost on of mine, though I have occasionally forgotten to put it on in the morning. If my pre-departure email check needed it, then probably that would be further reduced to the point where its an acceptable risk.
But..still needs something like a master password designed-in as well so it can't be used to activate another phone by someone standing next to me in the tube, etc, without my knowledge.
Having a physically isolated password store is a good start, you don't have to entrust your data to others (or do you? details...) and it ought to be difficult to hack by virtue of having a limited connection to the machine's it unlocks. Also it ought to encourage unique and difficult passwords all round, so you don't get some numptie's server being raided and half your family/friends other accounts exposed due to id (email address?) & password re-use.
But really it ought to be a 2FA item, and you still should need some master password as well, so that it can't be stolen and used before you realise it and can have it frozen. There are, of course, other issues like how it is supported on the host machines, and how free such software will be (e.g. will there be an open source driver for Linux use?) to make it usable on enough platforms to be of value.
Most worrying is the time and money so far for no sign of a working prototype...
No, that is not as big a problems as "can we be sure there is no hidden storage on the main CPU, or anything like it in a vendor-supplied device driver?"
Really it comes back to two important and related issues for 'trust' in a system:
1) Is everything open to inspection and cross checking? The basics of open source development really (and yes I am aware of the likes of Ken Thompson's compiler backdoor).
2) Is the level of complexity as each key step manageable for inspection and/or automated validation?
Having hidden code in the US-based corporation's "CPU" for remote management is a nightmare for any non-US government as it offers such an opportunity for a planted backdoor, as much as it is a nightmare for everyone else who cares about security due to the opportunity for plain old fsck-ups.
But do they have a policy on orbital masturbation?
Mine is the dirty mac, thanks ->
Indeed 2-3 years is taking the piss, but that is what we see with the majority of smartphones. You have to look hard to find any getting support or security updates even when under 1 year old, let alone 3.
But this misses the point - such shit security practice like unencrypted communications that reveal passwords, etc, have been known to be shit for decades so there is no excuse. It simply comes down to companies not employing staff or external support (e.g. penetration testing, etc) who know what they are doing when it comes to security. So many of the bugs that keep coming up, and design flaws, are well known and often (in some cases, like memory abuse) picked up by compiler warning and static analysis tools. That don't get used.
It is always sad when someone's life is cut short for any reason, but more so for mental illness, etc, where it always feels as if it could have been prevented so easily if only we had known how deep the problem was. More so, of course, when the person is famous in some way for having contributed to humanities well being in a significant way.
"Therefore, send not to know
For whom the bell tolls,
It tolls for thee."
"Or the big robotic dog will give you a humping that no postman ever dreamt of in his worst nightmare"
"The idea that FPGAs are going to be used by the million in autonomous vehicles is farcical"
Really, you think that they will be either standard CPUs or an ASIC they got right first time and has no need for updates due to bugs and litigation-induced changes?
"Nobody understands human-machine interfaces anymore"
You forgot the morons at web browser dev teams, think Chrome, Firefox (desperately trying to copy Chrome and losing their USPs in the process), even Vivaldi, the new-Opera, has gone for its own stupid win7-ish framework that looks out of place even on Windows, let along other machines, and seems to have lost the good bits of Opera. Opera, of course, has also lost the good bits by becoming a Chrome-reband (OK, the "turbo" feature is still useful).
A pox on them all!
So when all of the gear in the West has China's required back-doors, as they also want, will our governments be happy that we can all sleep safer knowing those bad guys can be found and stopped, and that the Chinese (and every other government out there) would never dream of using this mandated access for political reasons or for industrial espionage?
"what this crap is all about?"
Not being tied to some vendor's over-priced hardware is the most obvious aspect, as traditionally you would buy some storage array and then have to get replacement HDD from that vendor, at £1-2k per HDD for SFA, but for a firmware version the software would accept.
So yes it is a lot of bollocks but the underlying issue, that of having a choice of hardware, is not such a trivial aspect after all.
Its far to easy to shout "MS shill" at consumer magazines when the real answer is much more likely to be how they choose to evaluate things. The "average consumer" from an advertiser's perspective appears to be someone not terribly bright and blown over by bling and novelty features, say, voice control. They are unlikely to think or care much about the privacy implications of how that is implemented, nor do they think much about freedom and control over a PC.
Tech web sites on the other hand obsess over small points and how thing can be used for massive scale computing, etc. I have to admit to being that sort of a geek and champion Linux for various reason like this.
But I know some folk who have "upgraded" to W10 and genuinely love it because it works for them and they don't care about the things I do. Sure I point them out, but I don't behave like a religious nutter over it and they are perfectly free to choose that if they want.
Doh! You just fed a troll.
We are pretty much a Linux shop, with a few Solaris machines being retired as fast as we can get our gonads out of Larry's money-making vice. However we do require Office for some document work where it has to be format-perfect with other MS users, and a few CAD packages that are Windows-only. Our solution is to use Linux for our desktops and have a few VMs with Windows for those applications (often XP, as for 7 you need the enterprise license I think for virtulisation), and not give them internet access.
Result is pretty much the best of both worlds in terms of cost, flexibility and security. Yes it adds a slight complexity to using software in having to fire up the VMs but for anyone capable of using CAD software or writing complex technical or business documents its not a challenge after 10 mins of tuition.
Of course it might not suit everyone's use-case, but is worth considering.
The whole "TCO thing" is flaky, it depends on who is running the evaluation and just what they are asking as the licensing costs for Windows (in particular) are complicated.
But even if Windows was a little cheaper for my use-case, which I doubt, I would still choose Linux for the simple reason that I am in charge of what my computers do. Not some company that won't give me all the source code and reserves the rights in the EULA to disable stuff if they feel like it (e.g. for DRM support). That is a point of principle for me.
Over 5 years, look at the cost of Red Hat versus a Windows 2012 server. Which OS is more expensive to run?
I'm sure that depends on who you ask:
So they say "Red Hat Enterprise Linux experienced 34% lower annual TCO per user compared to systems running Windows Server", what are your figures please? And a suitable citation.
So organisations that allow users to install arbitrary software like P2P clients, and don't pay any real attention to network security/firewall rules, are also getting Rodger'd with a spiky barge poll when it comes to Windows infections, etc?
Colour me surprised...
Opps, did I just feed a Troll?
"Have you looked at the amount of crud you get with say a default Linux install?"
And yet a typical Linux install takes up far less disk space than typical Windows 10, odd that?
From here, Windows 10 16GB/20GB for 32/64-bit, Ubuntu 7GB:
Also its easy to fire up Synaptic or whatever package manager and de-install anything you really feel is unneeded for your system. If you are doing it a lot, then just use command line 'apt-get' (or equivalent) program to remove packages, and when done, use 'history' to list what you did, and copy/paste it in to a bash script that allows you to do the same on other installations.
It seems I stand corrected on this one:
I have not tried it, and would be interested to know if it plays nicely with the (usually off) AppArmour profile, etc, but it is a step in the right direction.
"The only actual effect of DRM is that it makes it so I cannot use my Linux box to watch Netflix and I'm a paying subscriber."
At one time they used Flash, and for all of the swiss cheese flaws in its implementation, it actually achieved the goal of having something that ran on all major OS (Windows, MacOS, Linux, maybe even Solaris once?) and could do enough DRM-ish stuff that companies were happy with it as a solution to getting people to use a paying service instead of torrenting it.
But then they decided to use Silverlight as apparently Flash was not secure enough (in DRM terms, they care not one hoot about your security) to keep Hollywood happy. Or maybe MS paid someone to try and embrace their new and long-lasting technology, who knows... Add to that Apple's decision to kill flash on mobile, and Adobe's utter inability to fix it for any sane length of time, and we see Flash is dying as well with only an old version support on Linux (unless you let Google slurp your privates with Chrome).
So we are back to the situation of not having support on many platform (older Android, Linux, Windows XP, etc) and it is easier to torrent. Any how many tears do I see being cried over this?
"So the government could decrypt part of the key, then brute-force the remainder"
One aspect of all of this that I wondered about is most folk have pretty simple PIN sequences or unlock patters for their phones, so I suspect they are brute-forcible in the order of 1E8 attempts or less, for a 4 digit PIN probably ~500 attempts. So is recovery from a confiscated phone really beyond the law enforcement capabilities, or is it simply an issue of cost/time that it looks too hard to do without a simple backdoor?
After all the Internet part needs very strong encryption because there are plenty of opportunities for the data to be intercepted and plenty of botnet PCs to do cracking if it looks worth it, but physical access to a phone is much less common and generally I suspect most stolen phones are going to be wiped and re-sold unless its trivial to get profitable data off it.
"Of course the big difference between being in government and having left government is that you no longer have
the direct responsibility to keep people safe to knee-jerk to tabloid scare stories and moronic voters who believe them"
Is the fixed version for you. Really, what we have seen recently mostly did not use encryption, and decades ago when the likes of the IRA, Red Brigade, ETA, etc, we bombing and shooting people they did not have access to encrypted phones at all but some how managed to keep killing.
Yes, when I was self-employed that was the downside. Ended up with an arm like Popeye...
"Refusal to comply is not the same as giving a reason for not being able to"
But what is it? The El Reg article reads is if they just point-blank ignored the Brazilian courts (which is always possible I guess). But so far I have not seen any translation of what the court requested nor what the official response of WhatsApp was to this request.
Can someone find out the real point of disagreement?
I use WhatsApp as it offers a group messaging facility that is handy to organise meetings of friends, etc, and once after wiping data to clear space on my SD card it asked if I wanted to download the previous messages, so obviously it keeps at least some history.
That would make sense, as the recipient's phone could be off or out of range for a few days so you would still want a message to get through. However, if anything like SMS I doubt they bother to store more than a week or two's worth of history (as it can also have photos, audio and video clips, so could be large).
As for WhatsApp having flawed encryption, that is a different matter. The fact that it can be broken or intercepted with moderate effort by a skilled hackler (GCHQ/NSA sort of thing) is not the same as being able to offer plain text on demand.
That was my thought - they simply can't provide what was requested and the court can't get their head around that concept. But without an explanation of the original case and court order its just speculation.
Not if your sole route and connection (i.e. ISP / mobile operator) disconnects that service by blocking it.
You (an El Reg reader) can of course use VPN, etc, to bypass regional blocks, unless they are told to block VPNs for that reason, then you are in to the whack-a-mole game of blocking proxies, protocols, etc. Joe Public will just look at the phone/PC and go "WTF?"
I wonder if there is a good reason that WhatsApp refused to comply with the court order. Were they asked to supply plain-text data that they simply had no access to? Or did they think the original request was unreasonable in any other way?
The article covers none of this, and it seems odd that WhatsApp would simply refuse to consider a valid court order relating to an intentionally-accepted crime in any country unless there was something odd about it.
This appears to be very different to Uber who make a point of not complying with existing rules on licensing and insurance for taxies by arguing they somehow are not offering rides-for-hire, when everyone can see that is the whole point of paying for a ride.
I can't quite tell if you were meaning to be sarcastic or simply trolling (if so, not a quality Troll).
And yet, including all of the terrorist killings in USA and EU in the past decades, it is still only equivalent a few weeks of road deaths in the same area (and gun accidents in the USA, for added Troll flavour).
Step 1 - unplug networking
Step 2 - wait for several days/weeks to see what falls over and/or who calls you.
Step 3 - shut down rig now your fairly confident its not really needed, as once stopped and cooled you have little chance of spinning the disk up ever again!
The main problems with all of this discussion about the legal aspect is it relies on all gov doing the same thing in law as the EU standard and companies honouring that as well. Both as slow and unlikely to happen, and also likely to get screwed over by some gov deciding to change the law on slurping (or just doing it by the back door of secret court orders).
But there is the option of encrypting a customer's data with their own key(s) in such a way that the cloud service never has access to said keys. In that sense it matters not one hoot as to where your data is because its always under your lock & key.
Yes, I know it might not be fully NAS-proof if they took a fancy to it, but it is enough for companies to be able to honestly say they cannot prove clear-text data, so there is no point in asking. In addition there is little to no risk of accidental disclosure to a corrupt cloud company employee, discarded equipment, sale if cloud company goes in to administration or is taken over, etc...
Of course that has its own issues, and is not going to go down well with data slurping companies like FB, Google and (sadly now) MS where scanning your data to whore you to advertisers is how they make a living. They could work around that to have a decent compromise, but without all of the lovely profitable user-identifying data to play with. So bugger-all chance of them volunteering to do this.