Maybe all these cost savings will enable HP to sort their shitty website out so I can actually find stuff. I'm getting fed up with having to use Google to search their site. Also very annoying is the amount of dead links or empty pages when trying to navigate their support site for firmware etc.
359 posts • joined 11 Jun 2009
Ironic as BT and AT&T did like each other once...
Once upon a time, well probably about 1999, BT and AT&T (that's the old proper one, not the new at&t) did actually form an alliance. The plan was that they wouldn't step on each other's toes in the other's home market, and they would share stuff:
The fount of all knowledge has some info: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Concert_Communications_Services
At the time I worked for AT&T Communications (UK) Ltd, which was a proper UK-based telco. Of course no-one had even warned us of this tie-up, so in one foul swoop of a press conference/release we all realised our days were numbered. I left soon after and what was left was flogged off to Viatel and/or Global Crossing I recall.
"Pure couldn't say anything about the disparity because it was technically in a quiet period following its S1 filing and would break the law if it said anything".
Hmm, convinient. Having just had some Pure storage rock up recently, I'm taking a bit more of an interest in their activities.
I would say burn them with fire, but they'll probably survive that. So nuke them for orbit, just to be sure...
I have (not so fond) memories of carting round the HUGE 21" HP CRTs (boxed or not) that came with the (relatively svelte) HP 712 workstatons.
When unboxed the trick was to have the screen against your chest, wrap your arms round the back of the tube and then stagger where you had to go using momentum. I could just about get one off a desk, into the lift, up a floor or two and then onto another desk all in one go.
Synology 214 may be old but...
...you used to be able to get a 214+ which was the trusty 2 bay chassis, but with the zippier insides of the bigger 414, Obvioulsy that would cost a bit more. It would appear that the 214+ has been replaced by the 215+.
Originally I had a Netgear ReadyNAS Duo (v1 - the SPARC one), which was pretty good. My brother then got a Duo v2 (the AMD one), on which Netgear had dumbed down the interface something chronic. He then moved from that to a Synology 414, and when I saw what that could do (with all the phone apps etc) I was impressed. So much so that I went out and got a 214+, as I always like a bit of oompoh so the 214 was out and I didn't need the 214play as I'd no need for transcoding for Apple devices and the like.
My 214+ does everything I want it to and is very easy to use. My only useful pointer would be to make sure you specify proper RAID1 and not their Synology Hybrid RAID bastardisation, which seems to be too cleaver for its own good on a 2 disk NAS.
Re: Maths != IT
Agreed. Fortunately for me my CompSci degree at Aston Uni was one of the few which didn't require A-Level maths. There was some maths, sorry Modelling And Simulation, in the course but I managed to scrape through.
Meanwhile in the 20-odd years since as a sys admin, I don't think the lack of (A-Level) maths has hindered me any.
I was very late to the party, finally moving from my Spectrum+ to an A600 in late 1992. A few of my friends had A500s, so I knew enough to be dangerous. Unfortunately I had just started university and the Amiga didn't come with me, so I didn't get too much use out of it (my brother probably got a lot more!). I don't think I missed it too much and due to the march of time by 1995 I'd got myself a PC with a P75.
I did love playing flightsims on the Amiga though. F/A-18, F29 Retaliator, F-19 Stealth Fighter. Oh and how could I forget Geoff Crammond's Grand Prix! Ah, happy days!
The dress code here (Financial type place in the City) for blokes is trousers, shirt, shoes. Some people wear suit and tie, but there's no need for that. On Friday we're allowed to wear jeans, if we give £2 to the charity of the week.
So far so good. But after a while we started getting lots of emails from HR regarding the dress policy on Fridays outlining what is not acceptable. It would appear that what they really want is for us to still wear shirts (no polo shirts) and shoes (no trainers) and just replace the trousers with jeans. As a result a lot of people don't bother and so the take is lower. At one point it even propmted our invisible CEO who we never hear from to write an email about how we should be giving money to charity. Most of us were thinking if he was going to commit some ASCII then maybe telling us what the business was up to would have been a better topic...
Re: OS X
Not a great fan of the keyboards, but I can live with them. The Mighty Mouse was OK, but the (top) trackball would eventually clog up and as it's a sealed unit sorting out a proper long-lasting fix wasn't on the cards. I also used a Magic Mouse for a while. It was sort-of OK once I'd installed Magic Prefs, but I found that you really have to have your fingertips right at the edge of the mouse for clicks to be picked up properly. And then there's the fact you need to keep replacing the batteries. So now I just use an old 5-button Microsoft mouse...
I have the ability to work from home (and did for 3 months last year after breaking a few bones) but generally prefer being in the office. Mainly as I can talk to other colleagues and I have a lot more screen real estate. I've become so used to having multiple monitors, then being stuck with one at home can lead to a rather cluttered desktop.
My main weapon of choice is whatever VMWare call their remote client nowadays (Horizon?) which will allow me to connect from my Mac (or iPad) to either a dedicated VM or my own PC back in the office. I also have a VoIP handset which connects back to the office securely.
Once logged into everything then in some cases people won't even notice that I'm not in the office. Not sure if that's good or bad. But this setup has also proven useful for out-of-hours work (both of the scheduled and near disaster type).
So first we had Windows 8 which was meant to be all things to all devices, but what we actually got was three different OS in Windows 8 (x86/x64), Windows Phone 8 and Windows RT (8). Now it would appear that they're really serious in having Windows 10 and Windows 10 Mobile being more-or-less the same thing.
All well and good, but why? People may complain about MacOS X being dumbed down, but it's still separate from iOS. And whilst Android and Chromium both have some Linux lurking deep within, they're both separate. You see Microsoft, best tool for the job, not some one-size-will-fit-all sledgehammer. You would have thought the TIFKAM mess on Windows 8 might have given them a buit of a clue...
Re: A Unified Experience
"The ideal solution might be for Microsoft to shut down, come back anew, without the baggage of the past"
Haven't they already tried that?
1) Windows CE - Windows Mobile 6.5
2) Windows Phone 7.x - Windows Phone 8.x
3) Windows 10 Mobile
They'll probably need robot cyclists and pedestrians to test it all properly...
"The idea that compensation should accompany any format-shifting exception is based on the idea that the producer sells fewer copies. Not that many fewer copies, but fewer all the same."
In a perfect world where you either buy a CD and rip or just buy digital (and there is no piracy), this is bollocks. Yes, so OK we don't live in a perfect world. This reminds me of some countries that impose a levy on blank media, because it may be used to illegally copy stuff. But you could say, well if I'm having to pay extra to cover piracy then I've paid my debt to the big publishers and can download/share what I want. Obviously the fly in the ointment there is that we don't know if whoever collects the levy even gives it to the publishers, and even if they did how do you work out who gets what?
From a technical/hardware point of view a virtual SIM is probably a good idea.
But in the real world we all know we'll get screwed. As soon as it's up to a carrier to allow you to effectively use a new (virtual) SIM, then you know you'll get held to ransom via contracts, red tape and generally unhelpful helpcentre staff. No new handset for you etc...
It's not too far removed from the old(er) US model on the CDMA(?) networks, where they didn't have SIMs and handsets were locked to a carrier. Great for carriers, crap for consumers.
One further point. I don't believe I saw it mentioned in the article, but would a handset be able to take multiple virtual SIMs?
Playlists may not be entirely safe if you've upgraded to iOS 8.4 and iTunes 12. There's a few bugs around regarding iTunes Match/Apple Music, one of which is that it may trash your library/playlists.
Not suffered from anything quite that nasty myself, but none of the artwork from iTunes has made it onto the iPhone (but the iPad is OK). Not the end of the world, but annoying if you've been an bit anal and made sure that everything actually has artwork...
Having backups is great... just as long as the restores work!
Re: Does it have the three main cyclist instructions?
I dispair at the behaviour of some of my fellow cyclists sometimes.
Much as I dislike disrupting my flow for things like red lights, it has to be done or where would we be (probably in A&E)? Though it does irk me when someone then cycles past me because the various roads/crossings look to be clear.
Mind you the other day I stopped good and early at a red light for a pelican crossing and I was thanked by a pedestrian for doing so! I can guess what a previous experience of a cyclist may have been.
I recently had to go somewhere new on my bike, so ended up using Google Maps on my phone (as I have a waterproof handlebar mount for it). I checked the route out using Streetview first to get an idea of what I'd be letting myself in for. Generally it was OK, but there were a few occasions where there was a disconnect between Google Maps, the real world and myself which led to an odd detour.
I've also got a Garmin 810, but I'd forgotten it will do directions! I mainly use it to get all the data of what I've been up to.
I've got a (rarely used) account with Dominos. A few weeks back I attempted to use it, but for various reasons I couldn't log in and the password reset machanism was completely broken.
So I ordered from Papa Johns instead, who on reflection make better pizza anyway.
I wonder if they're going to fix some of the more obvious stuff like the app store icon always indicating there are new app updates available, when there are none. It used to work OK back in iOS5...
I was on the early shift that day, so was already in the office. I got a call from my boss who was on a train coming into Liverpool St, he was stuck somewhere or other and was wondering if I could find out what was going on. I had a look round TFL/BBC websites etc and came to conclusion there was a power failure somewhere round Liverpool St. It was only later on that we started to hear what had really happend.
I was out at Canary Wharf which sometimes isn't the easiest place to get to when there are tube/DLR problems, and then both of those were out as were the busses. Fortunately for me and many others, the Thames Clipper services were still running so I got myself to Waterloo and got a train home from there.
It was a bit eerie coming in on the tube the next day.
Re: The solution is bloody obvious.
Unless someone is trying to call your normal number...
Having a backup plan is fine, but it's the restore plan you really have to worry about!
It's all very well having the data backed up somewhere, but can you still restore it? Some backup products can be quite finicky when it comes to how and where they'll restore something. Meanwhile not having a suitable tape drive (or even backup software) handy may also be a bit of a problem.
Personally I try and stay away from being too involved in backups, storage and monitoring, so not to be in the firing line when something goes wrong (and it will). Unfortunately that's failed miserably as I run the monitoring systems and also keep an eye on the backups to make sure they're actually running.
Re: "monitoring agent for Linux" required
Indeed, I was thinking the same thing. Also some agents are prone to getting a bit too carried away with how much system resouce they're using. Or they stop running, therefore giving you more work to do.
One of the many things I do at work is to run monitoring (using Zenoss) for hundreds of Linus boxen. If something isn't being presented by/to SNMP, then you can just knock something up to use NET-SNMP-EXTEND-MIB::nsExtendOutLine and it soon will be.
Re: Is this out the El'Reg window?
The area in question has been termed "Silicon Roundabout" due to an influx of IT/media/digital-whatever companies. I think it is the result of some sort of government/hipster thing.
As a Linux sys admin I spend all day looking after Linux boxes (funnily enough) and also get to do all the usual stuff on a Windows box. At home I've got a Mac.
In short I got a bit fed up with looking after Windows PC at home, plus when Microsoft (and various peripheral manufacturers) decided to try and flog more kit when Vista came out it was the straw that broke the camel's back. So I purchased a Mac.
The up side is there is generally less messing about and I can just get on and do stuff. Everything I need to do I now have suitable applications for. Though I have VMs with various Windows and Linux if I ever need to do something different. Having a UNIX command line to drop down to is pretty handy every so often. And my first Mac lasted 6 years before I decided to upgrade before it could no longer get the latest MacOS.
The down side to Mac is that they cost a small fortune, and now are increasingly difficult/expensive to repair yourself. Also if you want to play any more recent games, then you may be out of luck. Though I'm now playing Elite: Dangerous OK, however I must mention that performance under Windows (via Bootcamp) on the same hardware was a bit better.
And just as I read this I'm twiddling my thumbs as I can't log into Elite Dangerous. Oh well, may as well read a few more articles...
Copy then crush?
If the BBC are to believed, then the Goog are just trying to do something Chirp, a UK-based firm, has already been playing with:
Dilbert's PHB got there first...
Ichan, just fuck off. If you want cash just sell your Apple stock!
Meanwhile if an Apple television would more-or-less be a TV with an (DRM-infested tied-down) Apple TV in it, then I don't think we've lost anything. I may have a fair few Apple products, but I drew the line at the Apple TV as the latest version only seems to like playing media from/via iTunes. I like my media to be platform independant thanks. Also Apple can never quite figure out if they're bothered about Apple TV or not, which does not give me the consumer a warm fuzzy feeling.
From the early to mid 90s to the mid/late 2000s I bought a *lot* of CDs. So I remember the £15(!) CDs. Toward the end of that time a lot of my CDs came via cdwow and play.com who would sometimes be selling grey imports, as obviously getting stuff to the UK market over the English channel adds £2-3 per unit...
Then came Napster and torrents etc and my CD buying lessened. And with iTunes/Amazon/etc selling DRM-free AAC/MP3/whatever then there was a slight upturn in purchases. But like a fellow commenter above, I'm still unsure of why an MP3 album from Amazon can cost more than the CD (which comes with pre-ripped MP3 anyway).
So I think the final sentance of Jim 59's post pretty much sums it up. If music isn't paid for at all, then it'll either dissapear or just be the same old marketable shit. I suppose at least the music industry has eventually woken up when it comes to digital. The film and book industries could take some lessons...
I thought IT pimps would be more interested in their own comission first!
My own musings on the subject seem to be that if an indivdual is interested enough in an IT area and has some experience then they'll probably be OK. They'll probably be more useful than people who have got/drifted into IT for other reasons, usually because of it's "where it's at/the future" or it may be more luctrative than something else.
Many years ago (well, 1996) at a well-known telco the (telephone) network ops people decided to buy some new contraption to display some of their monitoring apps on the (6 x rear projector) videowall. It turned out to be some sort of X-Station. They didn't bother to tell us IT types, who ran all the HP-UX kit that ran the monitoring apps. In short we got told to make it work, we did... but it looked liked crap as a lot of the apps didn't scale well when given more pixels to use.
These were also the same people who wanted a "secure network" and so were going to order some kit to be strung together with coax 10base2. We had to point out all the floorboxes that everything was connecting to via RJ45. And as soon as they asked if it was "secure" we managed to placate them by creating a separate VLAN and suitable routing/firewalls/etc. Fine until they wanted to copy a file from the PC network to their own network. So in the end we found some old HP-UX workstations than still had a floppy drive and got them to use sneakernet...
When I was in Las Vegas last year I discovered that there was a Microsoft Store in the Fashion Show Mall. When I walked past it didn't look particularly busy (unlike most of the other shops), but it did appear to have at least one customer in there who looked like they were actually buying something. As stated above by Herby, there were a few Kinnect demo thingies dotted about in the mall to try and entice in more customers.
I've always wondered what they sold in there (Xboxen, mice, retail OS?), but due to various pressures (aching feet, full belly, tired missus) I didn't venture in. Though in fairness the same excuses kept me out of the Apple Store too.
As a quick aside, trying to find a non-Apple smartphone cover on The Strip (or the big mall just South) was near impossible. The missus had a new Moto X and was on the lookout for accessories.
It wouldn't be the first time he's had some problems with speeding. Many years ago (when he was pre Mr Dotcom) he took part in the Gumball Rally. However somewhere near Beaulieu where it was due to end he had a speed-related accident with another car that was not a fellow rally entrant. I recall that instead of helping the police with their enquiries he got out of the UK rather sharpish...
To be honest I'd rather not be looking after kit that's ventured firmly into legacy territory. I've done the buying spares off eBay thing and I've also done the "cross fingers and sacrifice chickens" when it comes to even looking at certain boxes. It's not a nice experience when you have to try and get things working again, when you've been pointing out for months/years that the kit really needs to be refreshed/replaced and management are breathing down your neck asking when is it going to be up every few minutes...
Nowadays I'm using nothing but Linux day-to-day, but every so often a Solaris or HP-UX box resurfaces to which I have to regress to a past life ( also occasionally dusty manuals and seach engine of choice) in order to do something. This is usually worse if it's not a box you set up in the first place, so you have to go in blind.
“We wanted to make the naming convention easier for consumers,”
Well that failed miserably then didn't it?
It's beginning to look like the mess HTC got into when it launched a load of phones with the name along the lines of One *something*.
Maybe they shouldn't have agreed to it in the first place then? But that would deprive them of all that lovely money that these shitty new gTLDs have ushered in.
There's not much excuse for "test" stuff to end up in prod. Usually this sort of thing is due to management deciding to push something through against the wishes of IT. I'm writing from very current experience. And of course when something does go wrong, it's up to IT to fix it even though they have already pointed out why it was a piece of crap...
Rant over, we use Zenoss Core (the free version) here to monitor Linux boxen and various databases and applications, but I believe my US colleagues also use it to monitor network kit. Once you get used to some of it's little quirks it's quite useful. Plus as hinted at in the article you can tweak bits yourself or download ZenPacks for extra/enhanced functionality. A lot of the back end is written in Python, so not a huge learning curve is needed. My main customisation is to write some bits to pick up (hardware/OS) info from Dell servers running OMSA and HP servers running SPP/MCP.
The downside to some of it being a FOSS product is that there's no proper support and the documentation can be wrong or out of date. Some stuff you may find on the wiki, but you might get better luck on the forums. Though annoyingly sometime in the past the forum was moved and seemingly all the older posts have been discarded.
Re: The bubble will be bursting soon
Yes I do wonder how exactly a loss-making company can get away with investing in another. I'm sure there's smoke and mirrors involved (as well as some very creative accounting).
All part of the bubble 2.0 (or whatev) when people are throwing money at t'interweb/app companies that have no firm plan of how to actually make a profit. It's almost as if they ignored what happened last time...
Re: I didn't think Boot Camp was really that widely used?
I only use it (on my 2013 iMac) to play Elite Dangerous. Hopefully the Mac client will be good and then I won't have to bother.
However, the entire Bootcamp thing can get a bit confusing. Until recently I had a 2008 MacPro, which all the blurb said could Bootcamp Windows 7. Unfortunately I was running MacOS 10.9 which had Bootcamp 5... which didn't support the creaky MacPro. So after a lot of reading/research/trial/error I gave up.
All that aside I've got Parallels to run various Win and Linux in case I ever need to dabble with something. Whilst it was possible to (just about) play Elite Dangerous in Parallels it did crash quite a bit!
Though at least on various handheld devices you can update the maps etc without too much trouble (and hopefuly cost). I hear some in-built satnavs require something from the dealer to update them (assuming the car manufacturer can be bothered to provide an update), which usually is not a trivial amount of money.
Re: Progress - what progress..?
I agree. It's fine if you only use Apple kit and services (and want to throw yet more money at them).
I'm not still sure if its the case, but don't Apple TVs only play video if it's in very specific formats? So if you rip your own legally purchased DVD/BR (ahem) then it has to be in MP4/AAC or something? That's the reason I decided on a WDTV which has pretty much played everything I've thrown at it.
Similarly it's a bit annoying that there doesn't seem to be any third party plugin for my Synology NAS that will allow an iOS device to pick up music directly from the NAS, rather than having to go via iTunes on the Mac.
Re: More rubbish coding
I'm surprised a Windows person would even install Safari on their machine (assuming it was a concious decision and didn't sneek on via an iTunes install or something). I'm a Mac user and only very rarely do I even consider using it.
I tend to use FF or Chrome nowadays on Win/MacOS unless I just need a very brief third opinion of a website, and so have to resort to the OS' included browser.
On a RHEL course many years ago the instructor said (semi-seriously/jokingly) that "rebooting is a sign of weakness", the gist being that there is a fair bit you can change on the fly in Linux. However he also pointed out that's all well and good until the server reboots... so it's best to make changes permanent. And as part of the RHEL certification exams they'll reboot servers to make sure.
Meanwhile there are some people who seem to think that uptime is a bad thing and insist on "maintenance reboots", which to me are the work of the devil and usually cause more problems than they (attempt to) solve. If there's a problem on a Linux box that requires frequent reboots to "fix" (eg pospone till the next time) then looking into the problem is probably a better idea than rebooting to mask it.
Ubuntu is using flash sales, announced via Twitter, as a marketing tool to create buzz
Look at this new thing! Too late, no you can't buy it! Yes that might create a buzz, but maybe not one they were intending...
Re: Two lessons from this
Data doesn't exist unless it's in at least two places! Some of mine is in four different places, one of which is in a different building. Given my day job of (paranoid) sys admin, then it would look a bit silly if I were to lose any data.
Backups, backups, backups etc.
I recall doing rather a lot of work for Y2K, as where I worked I ended up being the person who knew the most about how the HP-UX 9.x boxes did their thing, and so therefore was best placed to help drag them to HP-UX 10.20/10.30 with the help of an on-site HP bod. On that subject there was something about the automounter that didn't work on 10.20, and in the previous years HP didn't seem to interested in helping. Though as soon as we gave them a swadge of money to get a bod onsite it was sorted...
That aside the nastiest thing that cropped up was some OS/2 boxes that did something financial. I left a few months before the big day, so no idea how they got sorted. Though if I'd been there I would have volunteered for the triple time NYE shift! Where I moved to was a greenfield project, so it was pretty easy to keep Solaris 2.6/7/8 in check.