* Posts by Vince

414 posts • joined 16 May 2007

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BlackBerry Leap: Touching biz users with a budget(ish) device

Vince
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I must confess that this is a device that interests me, not as a standard device (I already own the BlackBerry Passport and love it), but I'm considering issuing a couple staff with the leap since they're reasonably priced and there's a good chance one person in particular will return it trashed in no time.

BlackBerry 10 is pretty damn good if you're not totally obsessed with apps and pretending it's a big deal to have trivial features.

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The Apple Watch: THROBBING STRAP-ON with a knurled knob

Vince
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Re: What do we actually need?

The Sony Smartband SWR10 has a 5 day battery, charges in very little time, no display, can alert you to notifications, calls etc

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Bloke, 22, in knockoff Microsoft Xbox ring gets 18 months in the cooler

Vince
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Why is it these companies have source code on internet connected kit in the first place!?!

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Apple Watch RIPPED APART, its GUTS EXPOSED to hungry Vultures

Vince
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You know I'd almost forgotten the watch became properly available today, because it's such an uninteresting thing.

Presumably though this weekend the pubs will be full of drunken twats stabbing at the wrists of friends instead of just stabbing each other. Well, if the battery lasted long enough that it was still working by the evening...

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UK rail signals could be hacked to cause crashes, claims prof

Vince
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Re: all academic

You beat me to the punch there - a train moving at any speed is the thing of spotters around here. Too hot, cold, or even indifferent for the services to run most of the time.

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NatWest and RBS' mobile banking apps go TITSUP

Vince
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Yeah if only you could hold accounts with multiple institutions and keep some cash in a wallet, maintain a balance with multiple current accounts and even hold now than one credit card.

Oh wait...

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Sysadmins, patch now: HTTP 'pings of death' are spewing across web to kill Windows servers

Vince
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no joke icon!

The problem sir is that you assume we all see a joke icon. On the m.theregister.co.uk site, you see no icons, so it is rather harder to deduce the message as a joke.

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Vince
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Presumably in disbelief that it's not just your favourite *nixland software can be exploited relatively easily?

Because as we all know, there's never been a vulnerability in Linux software, such as apache. Nope, never.

Oh wait, that's total bull... but then I live in the real world.

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Default admin password, weak Wi-Fi, open USB ports ... no wonder these electronic voting boxes are now BANNED

Vince
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Ah and there is the ultimate question...

I'll tell you why those units used Wi-Fi ...

Because when they were devised "Wi-Fi" was a new, cool, exciting technology and had to be on everything - in much the same way today, everything, no matter how pointless is being done on a tablet everywhere, even though it's often ridiculously expensive, or functionality draining... it's the "in thing".

...which is the very reason my old boss tried to force me - back when 11 meg was the best you got, to fit wireless cards to all the sales team's desktops, then install a buffalo airstation. All despite them all already having cabled network connections in place and working.

There wasn't a single good reason - we didn't need desktops to be "portable", we didn't need the near 10x reduction in raw speed (ignoring the other limitations of multiple devices on one AP), we didn't need to spend all that money which at the time was a fair bit, but it had to be done because the boss had heard that Wi-Fi was the latest and greatest thing.

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Is this what Windows XP's death throes look like?

Vince
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Is there a particular reason, other than making it look bad, why we split Windows 8.0 and Windows 8.1 up, but Max OS X is combined across all versions?

We don't split "XP Service Pack 2" vs "XP Service Pack 3" which is a broad equivalent of the 8.0/8.1 debate.

Presumably it is deliberately split in this manner - that's the problem with statistics.

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Tears of a cloud: Don’t be let down by backup and disaster recovery

Vince
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Presumably your idea of protection against some sort of disaster excludes any of the disaster scenarios where having the data in the same physical place is the sort of protection you think adequate?

Presumably there is no way on earth for someone to break in, steal the servers AND the ioSafe solution - because as it's fire proof (sort of), it's presumably theft proof? What is it they offer to protect against that, anti-climb paint you get in local parks on them?

Yes, it can be a long drawn out process to restore large volumes of data, or send it in some cases, but there are plenty of low cost, simple fixes to that issue, none of which require buying stupidly overpriced "NAS" style kit.

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BT Home Hub SIP backdoor blunder blamed for VoIP fraud

Vince
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Re: HH3

I see HH3 devices all the time given to BT business customers, I assumed this was the expected behaviour and by all accounts it is...

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United Nations: For pity's sake don't use your iPhone in your car

Vince
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I dunno, I find catching up with a friend for an hour whilst driving mile after mile late at night in the dark, down a dark, empty motorway actively keeps me awake and active. It also makes a tedious journey feel much faster.

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A gold MacBook with just ONE USB port? Apple, you're DRUNK

Vince
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Re: If only 2 ports were allowed, why a 3.5mm jack?

Plus last I looked, or heard, Bluetooth sounded dreadful for audio.

Aptx does significantly improve this, but will this or any other notebook/laptop support that, and does anyone make the headphones with aptx capability??

I'm assuming not.

So yes, 3.5mm jack, although amazed apple didn't 'invent' 2.5mm all over again then tellvypu to buy an adapter... Would save a mm... Gotta be on what my colleague calls the thinnovation list...

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Apple Watch: HOT WRIST ACTION plus slim $1299 MacBooks - and HBO TV

Vince
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Re: Apple Watch (BS) Sport Edition

No - they totally invented a brand new version. OK....

And when Graphene becomes mainstream... no doubt Apple will claim that too, despite being discovered/invented/created (not sure what the correct term actually is), in a UK university.

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Vince
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"All Day" where "all day" is defined as 18 hours. My days are longer, as in I am awake longer than that.

I imagine the real world life is going to depend how much you use it. Arguably, it's pretty pointless, so it might well do. But so far the only people I've seen with "smart" watches, of any description seem to have them notify them of just about everything. Which means it won't last long.

Whilst there are undoubtedly fringe reasons for all the stuff it can do, I'm not sure it's so "useful" as pitched. Plus I wanna know... if the girl who left her key behind couldn't get into the garage or whatever it was, why didn't *she* have an Apple Watch to unlock it herself if they're so essential everyone has to have one (which is a paraphrasing of the way Apple promoted it).

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Microsoft comes right out and says backup software is dead

Vince
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Re: May be Microsoft is talking about DPM?

I disagree. In our experience, DPM has reliably backed up *AND* restored for us every single time, and it just works.

Backup Exec on the other hand. now that *does* deserve to do one...

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Microsoft man: Internet Explorer had to go because it's garbage

Vince
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Re: Revisionist History

Presumably you think the more sensible plan would be for Microsoft to rewrite code to do the same thing over and over.

I suspect you'll also be the one constantly moaning about how 'bloated' it all is.

What is the better plan you had then squire!?

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Wake up! BlackBerry QUIETLY updates BB10

Vince
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Re: There are still Blackberry users?

Yes, because if you care more about productivity, devices like the Passport really hit the spot.

I wouldn't swap my Passport for any other non-BB device, I've tried them all and it just isn't as efficient - and efficiency of getting things done is a big deal for me.

Sure, it isn't for everyone, but I certainly am glad I can have a decide that suits my needs well.

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Expired router cache sends Google Cloud Engine TITSUP

Vince
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FAIL

Re: Remind me again

""Hell, I have to reset my home router about once a month and if it's out for five minutes at a time, that means in a year, I have an hour's downtime just doing that."

Clearly your router sucks. Get a better one.

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£100 MILLION poured down drain on failed UK.gov IT projects - in just ONE YEAR

Vince
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Re: FOSS for all...

I think you might entirely misunderstand the problem sadly.

Licensing costs aren't actually that significant a figure in the sort of spending we're talking about. The vast majority of the money goes in all kinds of other ways, with the most expensive being the consultancy style services, implementation, that kind of stuff. Essentially "human" resource (which is also very very expensive and does not achieve the required goals).

I'm working on a project right now where we've been successful in getting the gig, because we can do the same work at the same (arguably better) standard, but for considerably less money, by simply cutting out the processes that just rack up those costs.

Big Corp likes to have lots of meetings, planning charges, pre-work visits, surveys and so on that just push the costs up, but aren't wholly necessary, and in most cases in the private sector would be part of the process. In the Public Sector, paying for things that are really part of the sales process is considered the norm. Then paying for the people who quoted the work to decide if the price they quoted is reasonable by "planning" after agreement, then racking it up with all the things that weren't in the incredibly tightly written specifications that allow zero movement...

...and so on and so forth.

Meanwhile we've agreed a day rate, a scope of works, we've allowed contingency up-front and the project comes in, with a healthy profit margin (because private companies do have to make a profit to exist in the future) but a good level of service and result for the client, and can just get on with it.

The issue isn't the licensing, it's always the incredible markups, the ridiculous processes and the red tape, which takes so long it allows the entire project to be rescoped in the meanwhile. Buying licenses is no big deal at all.

Meanwhile, just saying FOSS is an answer is bonkers. FOSS won't implement itself, won't integrate itself, and won't deal with the training any better than licensed software. And those costs aren't free.

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Vince
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Re: Better than expected

"Any private company that wasted less than 1% of their IT budget would call that an unqualified success"

Wherever you're employed clearly considers that a success. *ANY* waste is not considered "OK" in any sane business.

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It's not the cloud: The problem lies between the chair and the computer – Gartner

Vince
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"The biggest problem is that for most businesses there is no real need to chase the latest buzz word solution so they don't really know why they're doing it!"

Yes quite. I've had people tell us they want the cloud, but they don't know what that is, other than they're being bombarded by everyone and told it's the best thing.

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HELP! Windows Phone update 8.1 broke my Lumia

Vince
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Re: Well, since the 930 isn't affected...

Really? I've had my phone lock up ONCE since I've had it - which was since launch of the 1020. I use it all the time, especially for the camera side, and it doesn't seem at all unreliable. I've rebooted Android devices far far far more often.

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FOCUS! 7680 x 4320 notebook and fondleslab screens are coming

Vince
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Re: An 8K fondleslab?

...although when Apple do release it 3 years later, they'll claim it's new, a first and everyone will go out and buy it as if that's true...

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Vince
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Great, and given that a good number of apps can't handle the 3200x1800 on my current laptop without exhibiting some really obscure issues, I can only imagine the joy that will arise with even higher resolutions.

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Crap mobile coverage costs UK biz £30m a week, reckons survey

Vince
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The odd thing is that we can fix this in software - and had already done it - as someone else pointed out - they had UMA - which meant that I could get back to my mobile network provider via another connection, such as that rarely seen thing called Wi-Fi. Of course this was the sort of feature found on proper devices like Blackberries, and since it was straightforward, just worked and required no major ballache, it has been binned.

Because whizz bang "apps" are the order of the day and have been used to replace sanity. Applications that worked just fine are now "apps" and don't work well, have loads of missing functionality and aren't at all smooth.

And now we're papering over those cracks with more silly ideas.

We could instead have just used the technology that was already developed and was doing a damn good job.

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UK mobile networks LOSE to France and Germany on data speeds

Vince
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In my experience, this report is about right.

Three offers me the best overall speed and pretty good availability of a 3G service (it does really help having no 2G network - especially as 2G roaming is mostly disabled).

Vodafone does offer me great speeds, on the occasions they bother to rock up with 3G (yet to enter any Vodafone 4G service area). Trouble is when you're on Voda 2G, you have basically not got GPRS, or EDGE, whatever the handset is technically connected at, it just doesn't sodding work.

EE offers me a very variable service - falls back to 2G service a lot (despite my devices being pretty good at clinging on to weaker, but faster services), but coverage is reasonable - not amazing though. Plus, for me, having 2G is like having nothing, it's practically useless for data services.

O2... well if you like calls (at terribly low quality) and text messages are your life, they're solid. Great coverage, robust messaging. Unfortunately the internet seems to be something they struggle with. 2G data is mostly duff and doesn't work most of the time, 3G is pathetically weak - and even now, several years after promised getting coverage in my home town city centre is really hit and miss despite O2 saying it should be excellent outdoors it is.

That's my survey, based on my real world findings every day, everywhere I go with a range of devices.

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Sky bathes in cash - then adds FIVE BEELLLION to its debt mountain

Vince
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Tuner? There's no tuner in any of the Roku boxes I've seen. Let's try and be vaguely accurate occasionally el reg.

And @bex - actually weirdly I've always found the customer service good. It's the way they give no toss about high spending long term customers that annoys me.

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RIP Windows RT: Microsoft murders ARM Surface, Nokia tablets

Vince
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Re: Surface 2 with Win 8 RT-edition

Why, does the IE not have the "tracking protection" option where you can install the EasyBlock lists which is what Adblock uses? I haven't bothered to turn my Lenovo Yoga RT device on to check, but pretty sure it does allow it.

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Google, Amazon 'n' pals fork out for AdBlock Plus 'unblock' – report

Vince
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Re: Sigh

Right.. so based on some data I can get my hands on without much fuss...

Sky had an ARPU (average revenue per subscriber) of £548 per annum, excluding VAT in 2012.

They had 10.6 million customers.

That's £5,808,800,000 from subscriptions per year before all the other revenue (eg. advertising for example)

The profit after tax was: £906,000,000 on the entire business, after all the other revenue was added (for example advertising, wholesale service etc), or 15.6% net margin. That might sound like a lot, but it's not that big an amount when everything is factored in and given that a healthy business needs cash in the bank - and a business of the size of sky needs a reasonable amount to continue to exist.

I'm not convinced you've understood the reason we have advertising still (not saying I like it, but I'm living in a real world).

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Vince
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Re: Sigh

"Of course if 100% of us block 100% of ads !00% of the time then the ad model fails. A happy day for me and it would be market choice that decided it, not backroom bribes and mind manipulation."

Presumably then the content that is paid for by the ads you don't want no longer existing will also be fine and a happy day for you? Like it or not, advertising is what pays for a considerable amount of content.

I'd imagine if there was no advertising on pages, there'd be considerably less content. Whether that is a good thing or not is another debate, much as it would be a different debate as to whether the quality of content would improve or decline. Eitherway, advertising is part of what enables a lot of services and content.

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Dixons Carphone clings to EE, Three in Phones 4U bullet dodge

Vince
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Mobile Contracts for what things?

"This, of course, makes sense for the Dixons part of Dixons Carphone, which is much more at home selling things like cameras and televisions. As such devices become “smart” – by which they mean “connected” – they will need contracts."

Will they? I'm not convinced my "Smart Fridge" (if I had one) might need a mobile service contract. Nor my "Smart TV" (if I had one), or anything else along those lines - if they're "in the home" there's a good chance they'll have service via Wi-Fi or Cabled Ethernet (and I can't imagine that's going to change).

Possible areas it might be useful would be "a Car" or "SatNav" (mine does already, but I don't have to negotiate with someone specifically for that, it's part of the subscription), so even then the interest is limited.

Perhaps the author can suggest some areas where those "internet of things" things will need a mobile service contract?!

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Microsoft brings SUNSHINE – but it's a CLOUDY DAY

Vince
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Part of Microsoft's problem is the total inability to listen or understand.

They've gone full pelt into pushing Cloud as the answer to everything, and even when you're not interested, and actually want to purchase products the "traditional" way they're making it considerably more expensive than the cloudy version, pushing people into considering alternatives (note to MS: The alternative is not that we get forced into cloud, but instead go elsewhere or just don't change anything).

If they'd actually let people buy things the traditional way without so much fuss they'd actually get more sales!

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Symantec sources claim exec teams in place by April Fools' Day

Vince
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Yes the name was well loved because the products did actually work. Unfortunately the name won't put the products that Symantec have butchered and totally destroyed back together again will it!

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Landlines: The tech that just won't die

Vince
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Re: Line installation

They still do offer this - if you move into a property with an available line (eg it's still connected all the way back to the exchange...) you'll get reconnection at wholesale level for a lot less (whether your provider passes that on is another matter...)

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Seagate's spinning rust most likely to crash, claims backup biz

Vince
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Re: Seagate 3TB

You'll be wanting the WD Red PRO version if you want 7,200rpm

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Vince
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Re: Seagate 3TB

If you're using Green's I assume not in any sort of RAID installation, particularly half-baked RAID like Intel stuff, because if you do, expect them to have premature failure unless you first change the firmware to stop the auto-park. You'll get weird performance and they'll die because they have excessive parks.

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Vince
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Yes, that's not an analysis that amazes anyone I know. We don't put Seagate stuff into our servers for those very reasons. Our general experience is that HGST and WD are pretty much on a par - across makes and models - and as long as you know the tricks for using the cheaper models and avoiding sending them to premature death, life will be fine.

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One Sync to rule them all: How Microsoft plans to fix OneDrive

Vince
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Re: This is a regression

The rub is that they do mention it, that's the thing they call place holders. The thing they quote an MS rep on....

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Vince
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OneDrive (which I use mostly to sync photos from my Lumia) does generally work. And actually the "placeholder" feature is useful particularly on my laptop - because it has a smallish SSD and I have a few hundred GB of photos - especially when saving the raw 38 megapixel image files.

The only annoyance/bug/whatever is that it does take ages to fetch the full image when you request it - even if you're on a really meaty connection - so I assume it's an MS issue in the first place since everything else is zippy.

So now they'll launch W10 without it. So will I have everything forcibly downloaded, or just nothing at all including placeholders?

Microsoft giveth and taketh away...

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Microsoft CAL licensing

Vince
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Re: Microsoft CAL licensing

The Web Server thing is really very simple. Hosting Providers have other forms of licensing agreement from Microsoft that allow them to licence the software making this a non-issue. There are also other options (and yes, it will depend on the scenario).

For example, Windows Server Web Edition exists for pure Web Hosting scenarios (at least "did" - it might be gone now and personally I don't care enough to check).

There are External Connector licenses that permit usage you describe in some scenarios.

There are of course 2 options if you're confused:

(a) Get a Microsoft Licensing Specialist to give you the correct options to stop your constant moaning.

(b) Use a product that does not require those licenses. I hear that Open Source is often a good place to start if you're more concerned with licensing than other costs which may or may not in any given scenario work our more or less cost effective than the other.

It is recommended that instead of moaning a lot you get proper advice.

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Apple in 2007: Who wants a stylus? Apple in 2010: We want a stylus!

Vince
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Re: Apple, almost as many about turns as Microsoft...

"To be fair, NFC is pretty useless on pretty much every device other than the iPhone for ApplePay".

I use it every day to instantly connect my Sony Bluetooth receiver to my phone so it plays audio to my Hi-Fi.

I use it every day if I am reading a page on my Nexus 7 and want to start viewing same page on my Blackberry Passport (or vice versa).

I use it every day to switch my device profiles and configurations to suit where I am.

It doesn't sound "useless" to me.

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Windows Phone bumping along the bottom

Vince
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Re: I know this is heresy on the Reg comments but...

You're not alone in liking the Windows Phone UI.

I really like the interface and find it slick and quick at things. it's very much like my Blackberry in terms of getting the chuff on with it. I own 3 phones, and my Android phone is least used these days.

The Blackberry is by far the most used because my world is messaging centric, and it really has got that nailed, and the Windows Phone is good for "leisure" type stuff - and photography (since I have the Lumia 1020). The android phone is good for... er, submitting my electric and gas readings...

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Microsoft patch mashes Office forms and macros

Vince
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Re: Move along there, nothing to report

I had 6 computers in exactly that setup this week - all because they're unable (unwilling maybe) to update the MS Access stuff they did in 2007 version...

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HOLD IT! Last minute gifts for one's nerd minions

Vince
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WTF?

For the record, I have a Yoga Pro 2 and it is indeed the best thing. But not since the Start Menu was reintroduced. I wish it stayed gone. I don't need it, I certainly don't miss it and I don't get it.

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BlackBerry CEO Chen says to expect profits ... in 2016

Vince
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"Blackberry is still caught between a rock and hard place. Their devices have smaller screens due to the space the keyboard takes up, and even Apple has thrown in the towel and given people larger screens."

You've not been paying attention. I refer you to the Blackberry Z30, it has no "keyboard" and has a large screen. They also have a smaller Z10, also no keyboard.

Then they have the Passport (which I own, love and wouldn't swap) and the Classic which do have keyboards.

Some of us are quite happy with our Blackberry device, and don't feel like we're missing out - we just get stuff done.

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Back dat app up: Microsoft opens Azure Backup to Windows PCs

Vince
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Re: Out of the topic

What the hell is the picture necessary for anyhow?

The reg is now best read on the mobile site.

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Chrome devs hatch plan to mark all HTTP traffic insecure

Vince
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Given that this will just cause people to rush out and demand SSL Certificates, the net result will be plenty of pressure on the IPv4 space, because you know that's not an issue.

And once things are in SSL, it will give people a false impression of security.

What a totally retarded idea.

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TalkTalk customers demand opt-out fix for telco's DNS ad-jacking tactics

Vince
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I hate this sort of stuff. Recently I happened to be at my sisters, and she (foolishly) had chosen Virgin Media because they offered the usual cheap starting deal and then ramp it up jobbie.

Anyhow... I had connected to her Wi-Fi simply because there was no mobile service at all, so last resorts and was checking something by PING. It was a few minutes before I realised that no matter what host I would ping, it would always respond, even when it didn't exist.

I immediately VPN'd back to work so I could actually get reliable answers.

This stuff is so broken it is unreal - responding to PING though is really pathetic.

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