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* Posts by Peter2

469 posts • joined 12 Jun 2009

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Mobile, cloud, social? Data? Nadella strings sexy words together

Peter2
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Re: The best keyword's are.......

The best keywords are "STILL NO COMPETITION TO OFFICE 2000". That is the future of Microsoft.

There is a desperate, crying need for a program with the functionality of Outlook 2000. This should not be particularly hard.

Implement delegation for a PA to read the bosses emails and book an appointment in his calendar in a competing email program and outlook can go. If outlook goes, then the rest of office can go with it. If office goes then you don't need windows.

The year of linux on the desktop will be the year after somebody programs basic features that tens of millions of workers who have to work together every day need rather than the 20th pretty desktop. However, people like playing with the sexy stuff and not with the boring stuff everybody needs. Fair one, but lack of a pretty desktop is not the reason why every business is still on windows.

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Will GCHQ furtle this El Reg readers' poll? Team Snowden suggests: Yes

Peter2
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Have you seen the names of some of these capabilities?

Code names are in British parlance supposed to be randomly generated and unrelated to the subject matter to make guessing the content of an operation/program from the title totally impossible, unlike the American practice of coming up with a descriptive name it so that if you discover (or overhear) the name of a program you can make a reasonably accurate guess as to it's purpose.

Some of those programs (eg forging SMTP headers under program CHANGLING) seem a little Americanised which makes one wonder where they came from originally. On the other hand, dealing with users frequently I wouldn't want to overlook the simplest explanation that GHCQ can't get staff to follow simple (and very well known) naming guidelines that have been around since WW2.

Which doesn't fill one with the greatest of confidence when we are told those people are supervised against unauthorised activity.

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Watch: DARPA shows off first successful test of STEERABLE bullet

Peter2
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Re: Presumably . . .

Re: "return to sender" bullet.

The US deployed these in vietnam. Basically, take one cartridge, remove the propellent which is a low explosive designed to propel the bullet and replace it with the highest grade explosive possible. The resulting round weighs the same, and looks the same.

When fired however, it explodes with such force that the weapon is destroyed along with the person using it.

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Adobe Flash: The most INSECURE program on a UK user's PC

Peter2
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Re: What IS Flash?

Adobe PDF reader also has the same issue, including features that let you compromise a system by simply opening a PDF file with PDF reader.

It would be really nice if Adobe would include a "secure mode" whereby their plugins could be locked down to just being a video player, or just a PDF picture viewer instead of the security nightmares that they are at the moment.

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Revealed: SECRET DNA TEST SCANDAL at UN IP agency

Peter2
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Re: Situation normal at the UN

Did the UN not also officially conclude that their famine work actually causes long term aid dependency as well, because their method of aid distribution removes the need to buy food from local farmers who then go bust collapsing the local farming economy?

It's ok though, the league of nations was just as bad.

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Half a meellion euros stolen in week-long bank smash 'n' grab

Peter2
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Re: We know from the Reg last year that two-factor isn't enough any more...

You could implement a half decent security system easily and cheaply if you wanted to along the lines of Phonefactor (now Azure Multifactor)

You make an attempt to withdraw money from your account (eg, ATM) your phone then gets a telephone call with a automated message from the bank saying:-

"There has been a request to withdraw <amount> from your account via <method>. To allow this request, please press #. Alternately, if this request was not initiated by you, please dial 999 and we will temporarily lock your account and begin a fraud investigation."

If you do the authentication on your phone, the money comes out. If not, it doesn't. Easily accessible, since virtually everybody has a mobile, and impenetrable short of having your bank card, PIN and mobile stolen similtaniously and used before getting either your mobile or your bank account disabled.

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Study of Brit students finds TXTING doesn't ruin your writing

Peter2
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I don't know what they studied to come to this conclusion, but if they advertise any vacency then i'm sure they will receive plenty of contrary evidence.

I mean, have they ever seen the standard of English in a stack of a hundred CV's?

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Microsoft's Online Exchange fixed after going titsup for NINE HOURS

Peter2
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9 hours downtime on exchange?

Hmm. I think I might (maybe) have had that in total over the last 5 years if you include downtime for maintenance outside of working hours on our exchange box.

Remind me, why should I move from an on premesis solution to a more expensive cloud offering?

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GAME ON: NVIDIA brings GPUs to 64-bit ARM servers

Peter2
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"What if ARM really does turn out to be a better server chip than Intel?"

Then history suggests that they will be virtually unavailable for 3 years+ due to no significant sized OEM supplying them, until intel has some form of answer to them.

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If Google remembers whom it has forgotten, has it complied with the ECJ judgment?

Peter2
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Re: The key to this is in the final para

Actually, Google wouldn't have any trouble legally with the US constitution over censorship, you'll notice that they were censoring stuff for China for quite a number of years without much in the way of bother.

Freedom of speech in the USA means that you personally can say what you like without being legally penalised for it. It doesn't mean that a newspaper/website has to publish that. If it was possible to sue google for not displaying stuff then I suspect Google would be displaying so many spam/advertising websites that it would be utterly impossible to actually use.

Ultimately, Google can either comply with the law in the countries where they operate, or not operate there. It's pretty bloody simple when it comes down to it.

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Code Spaces goes titsup FOREVER after attacker NUKES its Amazon-hosted data

Peter2
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Re: "This has nothing to do with the cloud..."

"Even if they had substantial and appropriate backups, there still would have been massive disruption to their business and their customers."

Which is why you have a business continuity plan, which is a (tested) plan as to how you are going to continue the business come what may.

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Peter2
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This sort of thing can happen in a data centre, but that's a problem with outsourcing in general. It's usually done because outsourcing is cheaper, and it's usually done cheaper because either staff are outsourced to india and they pay them peanuts or you discover that the reason they can provide it cheaper than you can in house despite using the same suppliers is that your in house solution had redundant discs in RAID and backups, and theirs didn't.

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Peter2
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Complete incompetent bastards. No decent backups, no disaster recovery plan, no business continuity plan, nothing nada.

inexcusable for an IT business.

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Peter2
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Re: Backups

The only death involved with tape is people who aren't using it. Then again, these sort of people are the sort of inept muppets who don't change their tapes, or just leave the same tape in the drive to be overwritten constantly, so if these people had have been using tape then it probably have been written off along with everything else.

Cynical, moi?

Ok, I might be mildly paranoid, but I still I find it comforting to know that I have everything needed to recover from the worst possible disaster imaginable sitting off site and offline.

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DON’T add me to your social network, I have NO IDEA who you are

Peter2
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Re: b*stards

I have to admit, I was somewhat tempted to send Alistair a friend request halfway through the article.

However, I don't knowingly have a linkedin account, and linkedin emails in general pissed me off so much that I blocked their IP's on our network firewall about a year ago, so it wouldn't be fair for me to do that to someone else.

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Good god, where will the new storage experts come from?

Peter2
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Re: You sound like a Lord of the Manor from the 1920s

Actually, it does.

We had someone in recently hyping how wonderful it would be if we scrapped our exchange server and paid them only £5 per month, per mailbox. This was seen as a good idea until I did the calculation

£5 * 50 mailboxes = £250 per month * 12 months =£3k *5 year life of exchange server = £15k

Once the cost was pointed out it was realised that:-

1) We own our own server so startup costs were irrelevant

2) Even if we didn't, It would be cheaper to buy hardware and software than putting the existing one in the cloud

And 5 years would be a short life for a server in an SME!

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Peter2
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Ok. By the time you retire you've paid out 15% less than the property buyer did for buying the house outright.

You have to continue paying out for your rental property, or pay to go into a retirement home. Either way, the property owner is one step ahead and actually owns the property (and can therefore sell it making back most of the money paid out in the first place)

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Today's get-rich-quick scheme: Build your own bank

Peter2
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Re: A better mousetrap

1) Saying how hard it is to do banking because of all of the old code is FUD bollocks. All you've got to do is hold a number in a database and have;-

1a) An inbound/outbound chaps interface to transfer money to anywhere you want (via a documented standard)

1b) a connection to the LINK network for ATM transactions (documented standard...)

1c) connections to SWIFT or similar. (Just another module following another documented standard)

You don't NEED to interconnect with any of the rat's nests of code run by Lloyds etc. Frankly, I have more complex code than this running on my website. Conceptually it's absurdly simple and I can't see the actual coding to be likely to take more than a few weeks. Getting the bank license would be the hardest bit since in most industries regulators are largely there to build barriers of entry to protect the existing incumbents from new entrants.

2) re current account numbers; you just do what most new businesses do and start your database reference numbers sequentially from a randomly mashed number like 826915.

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Nokia paid off extortionist in 2007: Finnish TV

Peter2
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Re: Dane-geld

Evidently they forgot to put either a tracker in the bag, or a liberal quantity of dye marker/explosives.

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Supermodel Lily Cole: 'I got a little bit upset by that Register article'

Peter2
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Re: Just who is getting that money?

We know ball park how much it would have actually cost to do the coding, because most techs know a small amount of coding or scripting (enough to know how much of a job it really is) or at a minimum will have friend who has a friend who will know. That, or at worst the extended group will end up pointing the person to a developer who could use some cash.

She on the other hand is a celebrity, so will be pointed towards the multimillionaire who attends the sort of social circles that she moves in who owns a group of companies including a web design outfit. She'll be being charged at least £400 per developer hour spent without realising that they don't pay the developers that much per day.

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Peter2
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Re: Never...

Obviously not. Then again, presumably being a celebrity she will likely be famous for "being famous" and given we don't receive, read or even pay any attention to that sort of media then we wouldn't care, would we?

People visiting a tech site are likely to have zero interest in her, until or unless she accomplishes something as we define the term, which is quite likely to relate to accomplishment of something in Science, Technology, or (applied) Math.

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MIGHTY SOLAR FLARES fail to DESTROY CIVILISATION. Yes!

Peter2
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Re: Coping with an X40

I don't buy the hysteria. It's from IT illiterate users who are fantasising about all IT vanishing. That won't happen. Cable that burned through in 1859 was of similar thickness (AFAIK) as 1 pair cat5. Burning out a pair of cat5 with overvoltage is easy. Burning out an inch thick power cable is not.

About the worst that would happen is that the main power generation networks are going to disconnect their transformers and we'll have a couple day long power cut.

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AMD tops processor evolution with new mobile Kaveri chippery

Peter2
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Re: The delusions of marketing

Gordon, I suspect the people who downvoted your post probably started wondering which planet you were on when you picked search as a workload for a CPU and hit the down vote button because they couldn't be bothered to read any further or argue with you.

Search performance is generally going to be a result of prior indexing or HDD/SSD performance if searching the disk and CPU usage is not massively relevant in either case, you know?

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Peter2
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Re: It seems to me...

Have to agree actually. I've recently been quoted for an low grade intel server with a dual core processor.

Thinking that this was a bit puny in the age of virtualised workloads and quad core processors I googled AMD's server offerings and discovered their flagship 16 core chip processor. I got a quote for it, and this astronomically more powerful machine is only marginally more expensive. Intel's nearest competition to this is eye wateringly expensive.

No prizes for guessing which i'm going to buy...

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TrueCrypt hooked to life support in Switzerland: 'It must not die' say pair

Peter2
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Re: FWIW

Actually, that's completely, totally and utterly wrong without any basis in law.

They have released the source code and a license allowing use of said code under a few limited conditions, one of which being that you don't use the name TrueCrypt or anything similar.

If you use the name TrueCrypt then your in violation of the license agreement, hence they have no legal right to use the code or make any alterations to it. Saying that they understand this, but plan to host the website in Switzerland to evade their legal and moral obligations is utterly immoral and shows a total lack of shame, integrity and decency on the part of the "developers" who are shamelessly stealing from TrueCrypt.

I think this demonstrates perfectly well however much developers are plain about the license agreements (no opaque language here!) then total fuckwits will ignore the simplest and fairest conditions of use.

It would be perfectly legal to continue from the previous version and call it FalseCrypt, ContinuationCrypt or whatever. If it's a decent product then as with LibreOffice then people will all but forget the previous dead name within a couple of years.

Re closing down; consider why Lavabit closed down and ponder for a few minutes on how cynical and or paranoid you should be, and if it's worth using any form of encryption product with developers in the US if you want your files to remain encrypted.

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Microsoft's NEW OS now runs on HALF of ALL desktop PCs

Peter2
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Re: Its not suprising..(Just use Classic Shell!)

Why should we need to add the purchase cost of additional software onto Win8 to make it "People Ready" for the users? The situation with Win8 is outright absurd, and each person buying it just gives Microsoft another user to say "look how great and popular TIFKAM is!".

Vote with your feet for the sensible and cheaper option and just buy computers with Win7 installed until Microsoft gets the message and produces something the customer wants.

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'Failure is not an option... Never give up.' Not in Silicon Valley, mate

Peter2
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Re: 'Be Lucky'

Leaders also never take the credit for work and ideas of their subordinates.

Honest.

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Jade Rabbit nearly out of hop

Peter2
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Re: Yawn

While I suspect i'm going to get downvoted to hell, the russians did not copy Concorde. It looks vaguely similar based on the fact that it's designed as a supersonic transport, which mandates swept back wings and a thin cross section. You literally can't expect it to look much different. Evidence for this is the design and construction of both aircraft being very different, and the TU144 being crap.

Also, the times covered all of the requests to buy British technology for Concorde. If the Russians did get everything they'd ask for, then you might have a point. You don't.

And yes, i'm British.

Also, no evidence that China has stolen technology for this. There is literally no point copying the american designs anyway, given that the american design is 50 years old, uses old crappy materials instead of modern lightweights and contains a computer that is now slower than most wristwatches. Copying the design would be pointless and stupid, and the Chinese are far from being stupid.

Why not just say "well done, but 50 years late..." if you want to bash the Chinese?

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Tens of thousands of 'Watch Dogs' pirates ENSLAVED by Bitcoin botmaster

Peter2
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Re: Re. trojan$

I once saw someone take out the heatsink/fan on one of those Athlon XP chips while the CPU was off to check which type of processor it was before turning it back on.

By the time we figured out why it was stuck at POST (the smoke was the give away) and the guy pulled the power the CPU had melted the entire assembly it sits on and was having a good go at burning a hole strait through the board. It's the only time i've sever seen that, it was quite impressive.

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Beautiful balloon burst caught on camera

Peter2
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Re: Is that the 'globe' of helium that remains for a few frames?

It's a good question.

How about finding some boffins who can answer it for sure? I'm assuming that the cloud probably is the helium but an expert might at least find the pictures interesting enough to explain what we are looking at in detail.

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You know all those resources we're about to run out of? No, we aren't

Peter2
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Re: OK, not in 15 years, but...

It's unlikely.

The Great Horse Manure Crisis is a great example of an insoluble problem that was actually solved. When it comes to resource depletion then you've got recycling first and foremost (if you absolutely cannot mine many new materials then the cost of mining goes up then recycling the already mined stuff gets more viable)

Plus, given that our currant rate of scientific advancement over the last century, I suspect that in several thousand years a future civilisation might create scarce materials with nano technology or something similar.

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BRITS: Wanna know how late your train is? Now you can slurp straight from the source for free

Peter2
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Re: Good Thing (TM)

Trains aren't that awful (although you do have the occasional issue with them breaking down or otherwise being delayed by somebody jumping in front of them etc) but they are expensive. This is undeniable.

It is cheaper for me to drive in to work than to get the train over a short journey. When it came to doing a 5 hour journey pretty much across half the country to see the other half's family I was extremely dissapointed to discover that insanely it's actually still considerably cheaper for a couple to drive than get tickets and do it by train or plane.

If you make public transport cost effective, then it might get used more. Otherwise, it might be more worthwhile to put the public transport budget for pretty much everywhere other than london into improving the road networks.

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Cloud computing is FAIL and here’s why

Peter2
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Re: Adobe brought down by it's own greed

Adobe might be doomed if there was a viable competitor.

There isin't.

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Linux distros fix kernel terminal root-hole bug

Peter2
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Re: Don't forget the design

> "However, on servers, you simply don't run a GUI. Try doing *that* with Windows!"

Ok. Server manager -> Remove roles or features -> features -> User interfaces and infrastructure -> Server graphical shell <untick> reboot.

No more GUI.

At the end of the day, any non trivial software product will contain bugs, regardless of if it's open or closed source.

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Scientists warn of FOUR-FOOT sea level rise from GLACIER melt

Peter2
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Re: desalination

> "I see. Where I erred was trying to stay within the realm of reason."

Yep. If you were going to desalinate a huge amount of water and sink it into the ground, doing so right next to the sea would be a bit self defeating, wouldn't it? Especially since there is quite likely already freshwater revers used for irrigation nearby since they tend to flow into the sea.

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Peter2
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Re: desalination

Too small a scale. We want to create an artificial river nile in the middle of Australia or Africa. Desalinating enough water to create the equivalent of a river nile, plus hundreds of miles worth of piping to take the water from the sea to somewhere inland to make said river and then irrigate it is not going to be cheap.

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Peter2
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That's good to know. Now it's admitted that stopping "climate change" by reducing Co2 emissions won't work (obviously; not using cars didn't help doggerland much) maybe we might actually start considering doing something constructive that stands a hope in hell of being useful.

Something like mass construction of desalination plants and irrigation projects to turn deserts into gardens might slow down the rate of sea rise a little? (Massively, insanely expensive, but possibly a bit more effective than carbon trading)

Or how about going to hydrogen based fuel cells and taking up electrolysis in a really, really big way?

More boringly, we could just start a slow, multi century long project to build some very large, multi layered flood defences.

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Britain'll look like rural Albania without fracking – House of Lords report

Peter2
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Re: If it's really 2015 we're stuffed no matter what happens...

Probably.

Look on the bright side though, the reaction of the public when they realise that listening to the "no, you can't build any form of practical power generation" crowd was a bad idea when power cuts hits is going to be entertaining.

I'm sure that most of the people reading this have the wit to be able to get a couple of UPS's in, one on the lighting circuit and one on the TV/PC/whatever. Power cuts? Pfft. Only for users.

You'll probably be able to identify IT Professionals and electricians by who's got lights on during the power cuts.

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Cameras for hacks: Idiot-proof suggestions invited

Peter2
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To be perfectly honest, i'd just buy a bunch of cheap second hand cameras from eBay. For the size of the pictures posted on el reg any camera released in the last decade ought to be perfectly sufficant.

Spending money on a half day worth of training into using a camera properly (ie, lighting, angles, mini tripod for stabilising the image, when to use the flash etc) will quite frankly get you much much more of a performance increase than a ten year old camera to a brand new, shiny camera.

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Nuclear reactor sysadmin accused of hacking 220,000 US Navy sailors' details

Peter2
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Re: A Nuclear Reactor Sysadmin????

Security vetting? Nah, we can hire black hats and give them jobs and they will become respectable professionals with a firm sense of ethics who wouldn't dare screw over their employers and colleagues.

Oh, wait.

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LOHAN spaceplane's budget minicam punches well above its weight

Peter2
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Re: Heater ?

Electrical isn't necessarily better, a small pouch of the stuff used in sports to help with muscle injuries would probably be more effective at giving out heat for the weight.

That, or a pocket hand warmer with a burning bit of charcoal in it. If you let it burn for a bit it'd be quite hot before it got to an altitude where the lack of oxygen would be an issue.

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94% of Brit tech bosses just can't get the staff these days, claims bank

Peter2
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Re: "94% of Brit tech bosses just can't get the staff these days"

6% have.

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Reg probe bombshell: How we HACKED mobile voicemail without a PIN

Peter2
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Re: Come on, it's not hard

With any ISDN lines channels and DDI's are seperate. I have a block of 200 DDI's delivered to my switch. To the best of my knowledge per circuit you can have 5 blocks of DDI's of any size.

As of 2007 you could also present any number as the CLI- as part of an office move I have set:-

1) My mobile number

2) geographic numbers on a different exchange (ie; the new office DDI's while at the old office)

3) non geographic numbers

All of which presented correctly.

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Cisco: Hey, IT depts. You're all malware hosts

Peter2
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100% of IT Depts they tested were probably Cisco customers using Cisco VOIP phones that seemingly require a server to be connected to the network, but not managed, patched, firewalled or otherwise managed by IT.

. . . Which is why I don't have a Cisco telephone system.

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Systems meltdown plunges US immigration courts into pen-and-paper stone age

Peter2
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Re: What are we going to do when the super-solar flare arrives?

Moreover, the type of equipment attached directly to a power line carrying 125,000 - 750,000 volts is not going to be unduly worried about receiving a few thousand volts more or less than it was expecting. Delicate microelectronics this stuff is not!

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Judge halts spread of zombie Nortel patents to Texas in Google trial

Peter2
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Re: @AC

> "If you eliminate all the other factors (as lawyers are wont to do) there's still no escaping the fact that the patent system has never seen abuse like this"

When America joined WW1 they did so without any effective aircraft because the Wright brothers had patented manned flight, and developing the airplane was tied up in litigation.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the pond production runs for single types of fighter aircraft outstripped the production of every single thing with wings in the by orders of magnitude (there were ~5500 Sopwith Camels built alone FFS!)

This disaster was mitigated by being able to buy British and French planes off of their factories. If that disaster didn't encourage reform of the patent system though, don't get your hopes up that there is going to be any reform now!

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Next Windows obsolescence panic is 450 days from … NOW!

Peter2
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Re: Upgrade Frequency

There are businesses out there that are more tight than the one I work for.

I am actually surprised, I didn't think it was possible.

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Hackers attempt to BLACKMAIL plastic surgeons

Peter2
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Re: Through its contact form?

Easy. When it arrives at the marketing department then it gets pulled into the database as a prospect by our case management system, which also acts as a CRM system for sales.

Admittedly, it's still in a database, however it's not web facing.

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Peter2
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Re: Through its contact form?

My question would be why the hell is a contact form storing stuff in a database?!

The contact form on my company website just points at a hardcoded php form -> email script that I knocked up in about 5 mins when somebody asked if they could have a contact form on the website. Absolutely no client details are stored on the website, you could totally compromise every script on there and still gain nothing.

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Microsoft TIER SMEAR changes app prices whether devs ask or not

Peter2
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Re: Developers, developers, developers

Engineering wasn't always that good. Back in ye old days, bridges etc used to collapse with surprising regularity, even after they had just been built and the supports taken away.

The Romans reputedly dealt with that by requiring the responsible engineer to stand under the bridge when the supports were removed. After a very short adjustment period, Roman engineering projects tended to be to done to a standard admired after a couple of thousand years.

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