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* Posts by Dr. Mouse

1141 posts • joined 22 May 2007

NSA gets burned by a sysadmin, decides to burn 90% of its sysadmins

Dr. Mouse
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Re: Hmm..

Yep. He's going to have to hope there are no BOFHs or PFYs on that list.

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'Look, give us Snowden' - this Friday's top US-Russia talks revealed

Dr. Mouse
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Re: take him out

"Give it a little time. It takes a while to mount that sort of operation, especially in a police state."

But he left the United States!

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Dr. Mouse
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Re: take him out

No way, the American Government would never stoop to such...

Hey, guys, what's that red dot?

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Can't agree on a coding style? Maybe the NEW YORK TIMES can help

Dr. Mouse
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Re: Personally

"*begins writing his own style guide*"

http://xkcd.com/927/

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Dr. Mouse
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Re: Or, Alternatively, the UPI Style Manual

"What goes into the file, however, should be plain old spaces -- however many you've agreed on with your editor."

So what happens when someone edits my code who wants 2 spaces instead of 4? Or 8? Or 5?

If they are left as tabs they can be adjusted by an individual's preference in their editor.

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Dr. Mouse
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Re: 4 SPACES?!

I completely agree, if for no other reason than it saves me 3 keystrokes (and saves 3 bytes of storage, of course...)

And why does an if need a block after it? for a single statement it is a complete waste, and looks messy!

Merkins have butchered the English language, now they are trying to do the same to C-style languages too!

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Child porn hidden in legit hacked websites: 100s redirected to sick images

Dr. Mouse
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Re: So what?

We had a similar one.

We had a call from our ISP telling us we had breached our T&Cs so our connection would be cut (and that would include our website etc). A short conversation by my rather panicked boss later found they were referring to someone using our connection to download copyrighted material through Bittorrent. After we blocked it, they agreed not to cut us off.

It turned out it was an employee bringing in a personal laptop, connecting it to our visitors wifi and "forgetting" to disable their torrent client. The employee was sacked and our visitors wifi security policies tightened (or shall we say enforced).

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Chinese Apple suppliers face toxic heavy metal water pollution charges

Dr. Mouse
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'"If you're severely exceeding emissions standards, then we will punish you," Chinese environmental regulator Ding Yudong told The Wall Street Journal'

But if you're just exceeding them a little, that's OK.

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World's FIRST TALKING SPACE ROBO-CHUM BLASTS OFF to the ISS

Dr. Mouse
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Noooo!

Do you know how many wires/shiney things there are on the ISS? Neither do I, but I suspect a lot, all of which would become toys/things to destroy for the cat.

Cats are evil. Sending one to the ISS would be the one of fastest ways to ensure the demise of all inhabitants.

(Can you tell I'm not a cat person?)

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Tor servers vanish as FBI swoops on kiddie-smut suspect

Dr. Mouse
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I REALLY hope that post was in jest. It looks like it, but you can never be sure...

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Win XP alive and kicking despite 2014 kill switch (Don't ask about Win 8)

Dr. Mouse
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Re: 37%

"Still see a hell of a lot of XP machines in for repair and I'd say 90% of them are at least a couple of months behind on updates, if not more."

If your customers are anything like the people I deal with (mostly relatives and friends, mostly non-tachies who don't change the auto update settings) that's because they broke a couple of months ago or more, and they had another working machine to be getting on with, making fixing it a low priority.

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Apple FINGERED our personal packages every day, claim shop staff

Dr. Mouse
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Re: Shame their first recourse was "the law"

Reminds me of a South Park episode (as does everything at the moment)

TOUR GUIDE: We have to accept people for who they are and what they like to do. Hey! What the hell are you doing?

SMOKER: Oh I was just uh-

TOUR GUIDE: There's no smoking in the museum!

SMOKER: But I'm not in the museum.

TOUR GUIDE: Get out of here, you filthy smoker!

KYLE'S FATHER: Yeah, dirty lungs!

....

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Dr. Mouse
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Re: Shame their first recourse was "the law"

"I had an interview for a US owned company* that included tobacco testing in their contract. Positive and you are disciplined. They only hired non-smokers."

Surely that is discrimination....

.... Oh wait, I forgot. Smokers are one of the few minorities you are allowed, nay, encouraged to discriminate against.

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Dr. Mouse
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Now while I am dead against the (generally American, but increasingly the rest of the world's) problem of "sue first", I do agree with the principals involved here.

Many on here will be salaried. In most salaried positions, you will do some overtime without expecting payment. For extended periods, you may expect some time off in lieu. But then, you are likely in a reasonably well paid job, and this behaviour is expected.

For those who are hourly paid, especially on lower rates, there is an expectation that you are paid for all the time that you are doing something mandated by your employer. Others have already mentioned that this is a legal requirement in the US. As these searches were a requirement, I do believe they should be paid for that time.

In addition, there are no details, but it is possible that they tried to reach an agreement with their employers first. If so, the legal system exists for these cases. If not, I have to ask (as should the court): Why not?

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Microsoft haters: You gotta lop off a lot of legs to slay Ballmer's monster

Dr. Mouse
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Re: Android is no threat

"Windows is a lot more secure than Linux these days... And security is built in from the ground up"

Where to begin?

Only my opinion, but if you take a default Windows installation compared to a default Linux installation, I cannot see Windows (any version) being more secure (in any sense of the word). The same is true for well set-up instances of each. The only way I can see Windows being more secure than Linux is comparing a well set up, corporate Windows system with a default, run-of-the-mill consumer Linux system.

And don't get me started on "from the ground up". Security has always been an afterthought on MS systems. It has been central to the design philosophy of Linus (and Unix in general) since day one.

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Dr. Mouse
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Re: Android is no threat

"For Android to succeed in the enterprise they would need to build on something more secure than Linux imo. It's too much of a Swiss Cheese liability."

Well, I have to say that it is not the most secure OS in the world (although it's one of the better ones), but I would love to hear what you would say was better. Lets see what are the options?

Solaris/Some other proprietary Unix? It would be very difficult to port to ARM processors, given the closed nature.

FreeBSD? Yes, that's an option. Good solid product with good security features.

Windo.... Sorry, I just can't bring myself to finish that. The least secure modern OS in existence.

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Dr. Mouse
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Re: The next 24 months is Microsoft's true window of vulnerability.

@AC:

"To be fair, it's by far the best solution on the market - with a wonderfully integrated stack from top to bottom - and a massively lower TCO than any other solution that provides similar functionality..."

and your next 2 posts.

You have presented an opinion as fact. Personally, I don't consider O365 the best solution on the market. I find it a jarring experience, difficult to administer, and unreliable. Unfortunately the CEO is completely sold on it and won't hear a bad word...

I have to say you come across as an MS salesman, especially as you hide as an AC. You may not be. Maybe you just really like MS products, which is a perfectly valid point of view, though not one I share.

When it comes to office suites, the only thing I see in favour of MS is that people already know it. That does not make it a better product, it just means that it will take some time to learn a different one.

Given the amount of time it takes to learn where the hell MS have put everything in a new version of MS Office, I would say it makes no difference.

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Dr. Mouse
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Re: The next 24 months is Microsoft's true window of vulnerability.

"I suspect that Excel is Microsoft's killer app."

I have to agree here. The number of custom, macro-ridden spreadsheets used in my previous place of employment was immense. It would have taken far too much time and resources to move those over to another spreadsheet package, let alone the amount of retraining required.

The other killer feature keeping Windows alive is old, proprietary software. Again, at my previous employer, there were many old pieces of software, many of which interfaced with old hardware, which cannot be upgraded. Often, the original supplier is no longer in business, or will not upgrade it without significant capex. A company often will not do this while the old stuff still "works". We still had many machines running Windows 95, as hardware XYZ did not have drivers for later OSes.

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Typical! Google's wonder-dongle is a solution looking for a problem

Dr. Mouse
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Re: Analogy overload

"You're not married, are you?"

No, not until February.

As to your point: Yes, she does watch a bucket load of manure. I, however, always have the option of leaving the room. I'll go read a book, do some work on my bike, or even use a TV in another room.

OK, I do put up with watching some TV I would rather not with her, but she does the same, so I can't really complain.

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Dr. Mouse
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Re: Analogy overload

"Christ, I might be tempted to give 'em a fiver if they make the existing stuff go away for a couple of hours a day."

Give me a fiver and I'll tell you how to make it go away.

(Hint: it's called a power button. DAMN! I'll never get my fiver now!)

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Plods probe death threat tweets to MP - but WHO will rid us of terrible trolls?

Dr. Mouse
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Re: special privileges

"I'd say they are not - but public figures (such as MPs...) tend to attract most abuse, it seems simply because they're well known arseholes."

There, fixed it for you.

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Jurors start stretch in the cooler for Facebooking, Googling the accused

Dr. Mouse
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I must say I found it pretty clear. Although it was a few years ago, before Facebook, it was clearly stated that you must not discuss the case with anyone and must not research it outside the courtroom.

These two were idiots. Unfortunately, you don't have to show a minimum level of intelligence to be a juror.

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Chromecast: We get our SWEATY PAWS on Google's tiny telly pipe

Dr. Mouse
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Re: Money to burn

"Well you clearly do, otherwise you wouldn't have bought a 50" plasma TV. It must have cost a fair amount at the time."

Actually, no. I got it a couple of weeks ago from a relative who didn't want it any more for the princely sum of... £50. OK, the sound doesn't work, but as we have a surround receiver (another second hand unit, before you ask, also costing around £50) that doesn't bother me.

Honestly, we had wanted a TV around that size for ages but couldn't justify the cost.

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Dr. Mouse
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"People with super old tvs may want to invest these $35 bucks directly in a new tv."

Yeah, because I can get a new TV for £35, can't I.

Seriously, I have 2 very good (if older) TVs: a 37" LCD and a 50" plasma. If I was to replace these with non-smart brand new equivalents, I would be looking at (IIRC) over £700. Add smartness, and you would be adding at least £100 to the price of each.

Instead, I could get a chromecast for each for well under £100 (or Pi and accessories).

Some people seem to believe that everyone has money to burn!

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Dr. Mouse
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Re: Miracast

I have to say I was shocked when I found out that the chromecast would not support miracast. It would seem to be such an obvious feature for the device, and surely wouldn't have cost much more to add (assuming the wireless chippery supports wifi direct, it would "just" need certification and a bit of software)

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What did the Romans ever do for us? Packet switching...

Dr. Mouse
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Re: Fall of the Roman Empire

I thought it was because they hadn't invented the semi-colon.

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Dr. Mouse
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"Studying Networks is the best thing I could have done for my career as it opens up a whole new world of troubleshooting and helps you to make sense of everything else. Put that together with some decent Linux/Windows knowledge, the ability to get your hands dirty and build a PC from parts, an inquisitive mind and you're golden."

I have to agree.

When I was younger, my friends and I wished to create a network between our PCs in order to play multiplayer games. We failed, initially, due to a complete lack of understanding of event the basics of IP. The next day I visited the local library and took out a book on networking. At about 2 and a half inches thick (and weighing, so it felt, more than I did) it was not an easy read, but it covered everything above the physical layer of ethernet through to IP, TCP and UDP and some higher level protocols.

I won't pretend I can remember even half of it, and I am no network genius, but it gave me a good foundation of knowledge. I find it hard to understand that some IT techs don't have a clue about these matters. Networks are so fundamental to everything we do.

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AMD lifts the veil on Opteron, ARM chip plans for 2014

Dr. Mouse
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Re: Good to hear

"Microsoft support. Yeh... I know.. we all hate Microsoft, but to be fair, unless Microsoft throws some server and data center love at ARM, there's little hope for this being a really useful technology outside of corner cases."

As others have said, I don't think this is a large issue. I think you over-estimate MS in the server market.

Yes, there are a lot of MS servers out there. But there are many more Unix based systems. If companies can migrate their Unix/Linux boxes on to ARM hardware for less money and less power consumption at the same performance, why would they care about MS support?

As this happens, MS may see a migration of customers over to Unix/Linux systems. That is the point where they would start putting effort into an ARM Windows Server. It is always the case: MS is behind the curve. It's understandable. They only want to invest in stuff which will make them money, so they wait a bit to see how successful something is before they commit to it.

In truth, MS's commitment to ARM servers is unimportant at this point. It will become more important as the platform develops and the market grows (if it does), but MS wont let a profitable market segment go unloved for long.

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BSkyB-owned BE slams into traffic pile-up over 'unlimited' broadband lie

Dr. Mouse
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Re: ASA is a waste of space

'So a few numpty customers who know that "unlimited" doesn't mean unlimited go running to the ASA and make a complaint'

Or maybe a few people, sick of seeing ISPs misleading their customers, complain to try to get "unlimited" to mean unlimited.

It's all well and goof to say that they 'know that "unlimited" doesn't mean unlimited', but it SHOULD mean unlimited. If it is not unlimited, it should not be advertised as "unlimited".

'It's better to teach people to understand what advertising is than the punish the miscreants after the fact which requires constant monitoring by interfering busybodies.'

Or it's better to make sure that advertisers don't lie to their (potential) customers!

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Dr. Mouse
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Re: Good company though

"That should read that changing the upload affected the unchanged download sync"

I may be off here, but you seem to be saying that when you had annex M (2.5Mb upload) enabled, your router synced at a lower downstream rate.

If that's the case then it's to be expected. IIRC the higher upload speed is gained by taking some "tones" used for download and using them for upload. Unless you already easily sync at the top rate, it will reduce your downstream sync rate.

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Penguins in spa-a-a-ce! ISS dumps Windows for Linux on laptops

Dr. Mouse
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"Tablets are also in used on the ISS, but they are not as useful as here on Earth since, according to NASA, the accelerometers don't work in zero G."

Surely the accelerometers do work in "zero G". They do exactly what they were designed to do.

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What freetard are you: Justified, transgressor or just honest?

Dr. Mouse
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"Contrast this with the lot of the creator, who makes the stuff that Justified Bloke downloads for free. 80 per cent of musicians in the UK earn less than £10,000 a year, while 95 per cent of songwriters and composers earn less than £15,000 in royalty income."

This is where the problem lies.

I don't download much music for free. I have bought the vast majority of what I want, and there is very little out there now that I would want to buy.

However, while I may download a new track from a big artist (mainly because it's what other people want to hear at parties or similar but I would not want to listen to myself), I would never pirate a track from a smaller, unsigned artist/band. These are the people who drag that figure down: The ones who go out playing gigs at pubs every weekend and scrape a crust, probably having to do another job as well to keep their heads above the water. They sell their CDs at gigs, and I will buy them.

If you excluded these from the income figure (and there are a huge number of them), the figure would be much higher than you are suggesting, much higher than the income of those who are downloading the music.

As always, there is a South Park episode which describes this perfectly: Series 7 Episode 9 - Christian Rock Hard.

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Ubuntu dev proposes new package format for mobile apps

Dr. Mouse
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I don't get it...

This could be done with deb packages and a small extension to the dpkg/apt system allowing non-root installs.

Sure, it probably wouldn't be as fast as a whole new packaging format. But why reinvent the wheel for a small improvement in application install time?

My alternative approach would involve:

- A specification for "user-debs", stating no dependency other than the Ubuntu API, no scripts, and all files in one directory. Also probably a flag in the manifest indicating it is a "user-deb"

- A modification to dpkg/apt to allow them to be run by non-root users (for "user-debs" only)

With Canonical's current obsession with reinventing the wheel, I don't doubt they will go ahead with a brand new packaging system.

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TalkTalk's tiny package most certainly not 'best value', tuts watchdog

Dr. Mouse
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Re: OMG

"People who are looking at different packages will look at the channels available and the price and will make a decision based on that."

I think you over-estimate a large chunk of the population.

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Review: Crucial M500 960GB SSD

Dr. Mouse
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Re: RE: Fragmentation

Fragmentation does still exists, and in fact exists even more in an SSD. If you read sectors 1-100 on an SSD, these may actually be scattered all over the NAND but are mapped by the controller.

The difference is that this doesn't impact on the performance. You should never need to defrag an SSD (in fact doing so is bad for it, as it unnecessarily writes data, lowering the life of the drive).

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Google's Page, LG boss's SECRET confab sparks Nexus 5 rumour

Dr. Mouse
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Re: I wish the Nexus 4 did have a button.

"I'm forever picking up the thing the wrong way and having to feel around for the buttons to figure which way is up."

This!

I end up picking the damned thing up and trying to push the power button, only to find it's upside down. I thought I'd get used to it, but it's not happening.

I'm tempted to cut a notch out of the case, or put a sticker on the front. It's highly annoying!

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TV gesture patent bombshell: El Reg punts tech into public domain

Dr. Mouse
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Coffee/keyboard

"Many of the gestures submitted were anatomically impossible, or at least extremely uncomfortable, but some were worth preserving."

Must remember not to drink coffee while reading El Reg!

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Debian 7 debuts

Dr. Mouse
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Re: Send it to Coventry

"Of course, this takes a reboot to change."

Not necessarily. I managed to get a multi-OS setup working without a true reboot using kexec.

Unfortunately, if I used that to boot Windows, it did take a full reboot to get rid of it...

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Dr. Mouse
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FAIL

Re: Problem is tho

"To run Steam on Debian, you have to get your hands dirty with Experimental"

To be perfectly honest, I don't think Debian is targeted for such use.

Debian moves slowly. It is normally behind the curve. You don't get the latest-and-greatest releases.

What you do get is stability. Everything has undergone much more testing than your average "up-to-date" distro. This makes it great for servers or workstations. Not so great for a gaming desktop.

And to echo another poster, if you are complaining that experimental breaks stuff, you shouldn't be using it in the first place!

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EC: Motorola abused its patents in Apple iPhone spat

Dr. Mouse
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I'm in two minds

On one hand, a SEP should be "freely" available. There should be a standard rate, anyone can use it and just pay that standard rate of royalties. OK, big corps may do cross licensing or bulk discount negotiations, but the default position is "use it as you want, pay us this amount".

On the other hand, AFAIK Apple did not even try to license the patents or negotiate (I'm happy to be corrected if I'm wrong). They just started using them. Just because it is part of a standard doesn't mean anyone can use it without reimbursing the patent holder. If they do, the patent holder should be allowed to use it as any other patent in court.

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Greenhouse gasses may boost chances of exoplanetary life

Dr. Mouse
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Re: Are they dealing with AGW too.

"I bet none of them are worried about anthropogenic global warming, as none of them are humans."

How do you know?

Life could have been transplanted by a more advanced species at some point, a la Stargate.

For that matter, there is a tiny, infinitesimal chance that humans could have evolved on another world. (Or God could have created humans on another planet, if you're that way inclined.) The chances are tiny, but the universe is a big place.

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10-day stubble: Men's 'socio-sexual attributes' at their best

Dr. Mouse
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Re: Beards are Best

"I end up chewing on my moustache and constantly twisting my chin hair with my fingers after a couple of weeks of no trim."

I found that the best part of having facial hair. I used to love playing with it (read whatever you want into that, LOL)

It's backfired now I've got rid of it, though. My other half is constantly telling me off for pulling at the skin under my chin. It's a subconscious thing, I'm trying to stroke my bears, but it's not there.

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Impoverished net user slams 'disgusting' quid-a-day hack

Dr. Mouse
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"Yes, its insulting like when posh kids go off on gap years to poor countries to see how lucky they are, and claim to be helping."

You sound like some people who had a go at a friend of mine.

He worked in Botswana (and several other places in Africa) for many years. He was a qualified engineer who was paid a pittance in comparison to what he would be paid here, even taking the lower costs of living into account. Yes, he was a high earner by local standards, but a very low earner compared to what he would be paid anywhere else.

He did this to help people. He was involved in designing, manufacturing and installing wind-powered water pumps to replace the increasingly unreliable diesel-powered ones most towns and villages were using at the time. He had a car, an old beat-up landrover, and a couple of motorcycles, which he raced. The locals liked him. They appreciated all the work he was doing to help them, and the sacrifices he was making to do so. They enjoyed watching him race, and cheered him on every time.

One day, a couple of do-gooders from a charity turned up. They had a go at him for his "excessive" pay packet and "extravagant" entertainment choices. Apparently, what he was doing was not enough. He should have been working for the same money the locals were on, owned nothing and worked such long hours he didn't need entertainment.

He asked them if they'd prefer he went home, didn't help the people and earned 10x what he was on there.

Some people will never be satisfied. If you donate a fiver to a charity, they will ask why it wasn't a tenner. If you volunteer for an hour, they will ask why it wasn't the full day. Any if you sacrifice a well paid career to help people, they will ask why you aren't living in poverty while you do so.

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US Ambassador plays Game of Thrones with pirates

Dr. Mouse
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Re: Not playing their game

My brother does this.

He does not have a TV. He does not watch live TV. But he does download some TV shows. He feels justified because he buys them as soon as they are available.

I feel he is justified.

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Dr. Mouse
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Re: @JTMILLER

"I wonder how many people are like me, have a Sky sub and Sky+ it, but still download each episode for their library anyway?"

Add one to that list.

Disclaimer: I am in no way legally admitting that that one is me.

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Dr. Mouse
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Coffee/keyboard

Re: For $2.49

@C 18:

"Which by your calculations implies that 10 hours of playing works out at 1 hour of entertainment?"

You owe me a new keyboard!

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Tiny fly-inspired RoboBee takes flight at Harvard

Dr. Mouse
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Very interesting stuff. Kudos to them.

They don't seem to have got the hang of landing, yet, do they? Their approach seems to be "turn it off", so it drops and bounces across the floor.

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2,000km-wide Eye-of-Sauron MONSTER hurricane spotted on Saturn

Dr. Mouse
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Re: 3D looking storm

"they're fairly 2D structures, wider than they are deep"

That would make me a "fairly 1D structure", much taller than I am wide or deep (in other words a skinny f***er).

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UK.gov's love affair with ID cards: Curse or farce?

Dr. Mouse
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Re: I find these whole debate a Joke !

"I've had plenty of jobs and never once have I been asked to show ID."

I have always been asked for some form of ID for a job. They need proof that you are who you say you are, otherwise I'm pretty sure they would be liable if it turned out you were using a false identity for, say, tax fraud or illegal immigration (I think it would be classed as due diligence).

Most have also needed to know that I could drive, hence needing a copy of my driving license for insurance purposes, and also that I was able to travel to other countries, hence seeing my passport.

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Is the IT industry short on Cobolers? This could be your lucky day

Dr. Mouse
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Re: CV generator

I actually started doing this before I got my current job, then started again recently (before getting a job offer for the company I am moving to this month).

I started with a real CV (long form, not the Resume that most people mean when they say CV). I then tagged each bullet point with keywords. These would then provide a score, and the top scoring bullet points would be listed. Just before it was finished I got this job, so I didn't need it any more.

This was all because I had been told my CV was too long. I started tailoring my resume for every job, which was getting laborious (not to mention boring).

The only problem with this, as a system, is that many jobs come through agencies. They will (mostly) put one copy of your resume on file and use that for everything. Most do not appreciate that some people have such a wide ranging skill set that a single resume cannot cover it. What they need to do is allow you to give them a long-form CV which can be searched against. They can then either ask you for a resume for job X, or even generate it themselves from your CV.

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