* Posts by Andrew Dyson

8 posts • joined 16 Dec 2008

500 MEELLION PCs still run Windows XP. How did we get here?

Andrew Dyson

Re: But slowly – over time

Technically correct, but actually the "gradual" analogy is better because it takes time for the bad guys to discover the vulnerabilities, even though they may have been there the whole time. So from the outside world's perspective, the likelihood is that the apps will become gradually more and more vulnerable to existing threats.

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Will Windows 8 sticker shock leave Microsoft unstuck?

Andrew Dyson
Linux

Re: @Metavisor

Probably worth adding as well that even if you use repositories for convenience / security / regular updates, unlike iOS and (presumably) Win8, you're not restricted to a single repository - you can add as many as you like from different vendors. So you have as many gardens are you like, but nicely integrated into a single front-end.

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The IBM PC is 30

Andrew Dyson
Thumb Up

Still in use in 1998

In the late 90s my mother volunteered at the local church doing admin work, and they were still using a model very similar to one of these! I don't think it was a 5150 because it had a 30MB hard disk, although I suppose that could have been added later. I was fascinated by this living antique and used to go in on my days off from college to play around with it.

It ran a very early DOS and a green-screen, keyboard-operated version of MS Works (or some equivalent, I forget), comprising a simple word processor and a spreadsheet program. There was a similar epson dot-matrix printer attached too. It booted in about 5 seconds and was ready to use.

The best part was, IT DID ABSOLUTELY EVERYTHING THEY NEEDED.

Sometimes, I'm not sure how much progress we have really made!

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BBC iPlayer to run on iPads. Eventually

Andrew Dyson

RE: DRM

"You've missed British copyright law basically"

True, but then I was talking about piracy. By definition, they don't generally have much respect for copyright, so the point is moot. My question was, it's so easy to copy and redistribute a conventional broadcast (as another poster pointed out, you don't even need a PC or any technical ability really), does DRM on iPlayer really plug that much of a hole?

Granted, it might put off very casual copying, but since it's trivial enough to do it from the original broadcast, even those people won't be discouraged for long if they're keen to make copies - the commercial/large scale pirates will have already found a technical way round the protection, or used the method I've suggested. The only reason to use iPlayer is if you've forgotten to record something. If you're keen enough on the show that you want to copy and keep it, I'd argue that you'd usually remember to record it. Plus, series record settings on PVR boxes and software make that an easy job these days.

So I still maitain, the DRM seems a bit of a wasted effort, and if, as the article suggests, it could restrict the available platforms and methods of delivery for iPlayer, then it's a bad thing.

To those saying "well it's what the rights holders want", then yes, fair enough, but maybe the BBC et al need to point out to them the naivety (IMHO) of their position.

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Andrew Dyson
WTF?

DRM?

Does anyone else find the whole DRM thing a bit puzzling with regards to iPlayer (and the C4, ITV etc equivalents)?

I only say this because: they are trying to restrict how long you can keep downloaded material for, and to what extent you can copy it.

But, if you're really intent on piracy, you just get a PC with a DVB card, and either MythTV, Windows MCE, or whatever, and record whatever you want, at the quality it was originally broadcast at, and make as many copies as you want with no (physical, not legal) restrictions. The only catch is you have to remember to tape the show, but that's hardly tricky.

So the whole slavery to DRM seems a bit futile to me - have I missed something?

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Ofcom opens debate on Freeview HD DRM to punters

Andrew Dyson
Alert

PC based PVRs

Where would this leave a PC-based PVR system? E.g. I have a MythTV box which picks up the Freeview signal from a Hauppauge card. I like this setup because I can then sling the signal from a single aerial point, plus all the recordings, to a terminal anywhere in the house via Ethernet/Wi-Fi. The PC then doubles up as a general file/print and squeezebox server.

Would PC tv cards be able to support DRM? Or does the MythTV software have to support it? I'm a bit in the dark as to how exactly it works. The PC records the programs by decoding the MPEG2 signal (or whatever it is) and saving the stream to an AVI file. Can DRM prevent this from happening?

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Microsoft tells US retailers Linux is rubbish

Andrew Dyson
Linux

re: proxy!

Er, instructions for getting your updates through a proxy on debian-based systems:

Open up your Synaptic package manager, go to Settings-> Preference -> Network. Enter your proxy server details like : username:password@proxyserver.net, and put the proxy server port (usually 8080).

Not really much harder than Windows was it?

yeah, a few things still need to be done on the command-line in Linux, but that number is ever-decreasing, at least in the major distros anyway. Sometimes of course it's easier/quicker to do it on the command-line, if you're lucky enough to know what you're doing. Handy to have that flexibility - there's a few things you can do like that in Windows, but nowhere near as many.

Also, consider whether this is something "Joe Average" would even attempt? Whatever the O/S, he'd probably get his nerdy mate to do it, since he'd either (a) not have the faintest idea why his updates weren't working, (b) have no idea what a proxy server even is. Or (c) he doesn't know he needs updates (or that updates even exist) and goes happily along not worrying and not asking anyone for help.

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Royal Navy completes Windows for Submarines™ rollout

Andrew Dyson
Coat

games

Only one question. Does it install with Battleships for WIndows by default?

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