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* Posts by Trevor_Pott

4228 posts • joined 31 May 2010

Neither Snowden nor the NSA puts CIOs off the cloud, it's just FUD

Trevor_Pott
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Re: A stacked panel of NSA flunkies

It has nothing to do with them being NSA flunkies. It has everything to do with them being sociopaths ho don't give a flying fuck about anyone but themselves (and their own bank accounts.) It's very rare to those levels in society without being a complete sociopath.

So they're right: enterprise CIOs don't give fuck 1 about the NSA snooping their customers' data unless that could somehow cost them money. While possible, it is unlikely that privacy lawsuits would cost an enterprise enough to matter, though they would bankrupt small businesses.

Oddly enough, small businesses are also most likely to care about their customers enough to have ethical concerns about NSA spying.

So selection bias is definitely at work on this panel, but I doubt it's because any of the folks in question are "bought and paid for" by the NSA. They don't need to be. That's the saddest part of it all.

CONFORM. CONSUME. OBEY.

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Google may drop Intel for own-recipe ARM: Bloomberg

Trevor_Pott
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Re: @Trevor

I don't think I'm overestimating anything. I think it's more than "just making the code work." Workloads as they exist - including entire segments of the application design - were tuned for x86-based systems. Bottlenecks will appear and they'll have to be identified, worked around and redesigns done.

In addition, hardware support for ARM isn't great. Each SoC is it's own little world, and a lot of what's out there (widget-wise) doesn't have ARM Linux drivers. Want to use Inifiniband to lash together your servers? You're probably going to have to get a custom driver. Want to use a Micron PCI-E flash device? Same deal.

I don't think it's impossible, or even uneconomic. I do, however, think that in the long run Google would do far better to create an ecosystem around the SoC it chooses so that others can take some of that R&D off their shoulders.

I'm not doom mongering by any means, merely being pragmatic. The bigger the ecosystem, the larger the component choice (without having to go to the mats with every vendor) and the wider the code base. Additionally, you bring up an entire generation of devs ho are designed to think around the limitations and design quirks of your chosen SoC variant instead of x86.

Really, there's no rational reason for Google to "simply switch CPU vendors" without going for the ecosystem play. For that matter, there is nothing syaing that their existing workloads even make sense given the differences in CPU to I/O balance between ARM and x86, so on and so forth.

Testing, planning, more testing, redesign, lots more testing...it's part and parcel of shifting architectures, especially when you measure your computer in acres.

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: @Trevor

DougS: the cost of porting everything they have to ARM is huge. If they go ARM it also places them in a position of either

A) being beholden to a given manufacturer without much of an ecosystem (Intel might be a single manufacturer, but there is a hell of a lot of stuff that bolts on to x86 systems!) or

B) designing everything themselves, including potentially having to write drivers and what-have-you for any widgets they want to add on that aren't part of the design as it exists now.

Cycles are not "just cycles." Attached to the CPU are networking components, disk components, sensors and so forth. It takes an ecosystem to ensure you have real choice (and thus the ability to grind your suppliers.)

The fact that you have a Linux kernel on ARM doesn't mean you have Google's Linux kernel on ARM. Nor their apps. Nor support for any apps they use that aren't in house. Also: lower power CPUs means less likelihood of virtualisation which means having to figure out how to move workloads like virtualisation but from a metal install.

A move to ARM carries with it changes that could indeed be smoothed over by having an ecosystem built up around your CPU of choice. I think it's more than "just a new source of cycles."

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: Pat Gelsinger

VMware has an ARM hypervisor. Remember the "VMware for phones" thing a while back? Pleas etell me you don't think they abandoned it.

Also: Windows RT is Windows 8 recompiled for ARM. The Kernel and major services are largely intact. That means Hyper-V for ARM exists.

The issue isn't that the existence of ARM hyperviors, it's the existence of applications for ARM that would drive ARM server OS adoption (and hence hypervisors.) Further compounding the issue is the ARM SoCs aren't cross-compatible. So you can't fully pass back a Samsung SoC into a VM and then vMotion that across to a Qualcomm-based server.

Right now, only a select few ARM providers are really heading into the server market. Here nVidia and AMD are the really big players to watch for. Microsoft and VMware are both working closely with those vendors (and others), but the market needs to exist before they start bringing resources to bear on it. If Microsoft bets on AMD (for example) and the market chooses nVidia, then Microsoft is left holding the bag.

Similarly, is Microsoft devotes a whole tonne of resources into compiling the hypervisor for all possible SoCs (along with getting drivers made for Windows RT for all possible SoCs...egads!) then they could be pissing a great deal of time and effort into a market that just won't get born.

They have the tech right now, but everyone is in a holding pattern until someone takes a huge risk and dumps a big pile of resources into ARM server. This is what startups are for...and there are several in stealth mode. The 2014/2015 ARM server startup bloodbath will in fact determine the outcome of the x86/ARM relationship for the next two deacdes.

...unless Google (or any other Big Name) decide to become kingmakers. The investment pattern I described above would easily change the market. It would also trigger all out war between all major parties. That is something everyone wants to avoid right now, they are still licking their wounds from the mobile wars.

Google, however, managed to offload their risk onto Samsung for the bulk of those battles and is in pretty good shape. They could tank the ARM wars pretty well and have a crazy amount of IP (from Moto) that is relevant.

Still, the "gentleman's agreement" is to let the VCs take the risks, let the market decide (I.E. see who gets to revenue first and most consistently) then buy up the winners and short the losers. The Bad Blood Microsoft is stirring up with both VMware and Google, however, make me think that might not happen this time.

Google and VMware have reason to make common cause against Microsoft in an ARM arena and just enough of hte right egos have been bruised by Microsoft's asnine behavior that I remain convinced they may well decide to play kingmaker out of pure spite.

The real blocker here is that VMware has strong ties to Intel and Google doesn't have any real strong ties to any ARM makers except Samsung, whom they would rather not crown (given the animosity over Samsung's attempts to control Android.)

All the above leaves me wondering if Google might not do something amazingly hostile like buy AMD. It would be foolish, but not too foolish...but none of my sources point in this direction (yet). That said, Google (like Apple) has an enormous pile of money that they can't repatriate. Buying an ARM vendor (or at least a foundry) that is located outside the US is not remotely out of the question, if it came wiht the right people.

At this point, there are enough reasons to do this thing and enough reasons not to do this thing that it is really going to come down to ego. For all that a lot of Register readers believe that decisions like this are made on a purely rational, purely by-the-numbers basis my experience says otherwise. The more I learn how the tech industry works, the more I realize that "who snubbed who, when and why" is a huge factor in how this all plays out.

Our entire industry has been thrown into revolution more than once because A pissed of B and B decided they were going to show A what's what.

As you pointed out by noticing the hypervisor issue - and the article author by noting the ecosystem - this potential ARM server play is not simply a matter of numbers, nor is it simply a matter of poking Intel in the eye. The considerations are many and vast...and it seriously could all come down to "I'll show X who's boss."

Makes ya think, eh?

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: Pat Gelsinger

America is 350M(ish) people. There are 7 Billion of us out there and Google has the bulk of the market share everywhere else.

With the rapidly growing wealth gap in the US (that has seen virtually every single dollar of the "recovery" from the latest recession go towards the super-rich with almost none of it making its way down the stack) the US is of rapidly decreasing relevance. To put it simply: an increasingly impoverished and indebted populace with a rapidly shrinking middle class has ever less disposable income to spend.

Apple can have the USA. Nobody cares. They can clean up there for the next decade and every year they will continue to show less growth than the last as the US population is simply no longer capable of sustaining Wall Street's appetites for corporate growth. A decade from now they will be a middle-tier country no different from so many others.

Google prefers to play the world at large. To continue to bolster growth they need to chase booms and abandon busts. When an economy looks to be slowing down or closing it's borders to outsiders Google moves on and invests elsewhere. They are perfectly prepared to jumpstart the economy of an entire nation in order to skim a % off the top as profits.

Real US purchasing power stagnated years ago. It has been in decline for the past several. Worse, the hoi polloi are paying off their debts and this is further restricting consumer activity. At the same time issues like the NSA being douchenozzles, laughably terrible US government (literally, laughing stock of the world) and continued horrible foreign policy mean that pepole of other nations dislike the US more today than they have in quite some time.

Wrapping yourself in an American flag will win you points at home, but kill you overseas. If your domestic market is collapsing, that doesn't seem like the brightest move.

Oh well, Google, Apple, Amazon, Microsoft...screw 'em all, I say. I've no loyalty to any of 'em.

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: Pat Gelsinger

Actually, I think the article is pretty close to spot on in it's conjecture. Look at history: when Google announces it is looking at a particular technology it is because it is seeking to generate buzz, interest and - ultimately - a strong community following. These technologies are rarely truly "new", but they are unique twists on extant stuff that need a far broader base of people to get involved in order to make things really happen.

Here I am thinking of Android, Glass, Wave, Google +, many of the "in depth features" of Google Maps (such as Moon, building interiors, etc), Hangouts, Ventures, and Google TV.

When Google "just does it" then the technology in question is usually truly pioneering (GFS, Analytics, Google custom switches, Google AI load balancing and so forth.) These are core to their business operations and their competitive advantage and they don't like to share info until they are well on the way towards the next version.

To me, this says that Google has already made the decision to pursue ARM server processors and are in the first stages of a prolonged run up to the creation of an ecosystem. This is the hype phase. Next will come a lot of hint dropping and "idea mining." (Where they wait for the wider tech ecosystem to come up with great use cases and means of working together.)

After that will come a limited trial and prototyping phase (invite only, natch). This will be followed by "invite your friends" which will effectively be a free-for-all to anyone interested, but with enough legal CYA-this-is-still-a-beta to be get-out-of-jail-free, also "we can steal your ideas and not compensate you".

There will then be a bit of a lull as the community collapses inwards a bit, sheds the less interested and becomes more about a hard core of evangelists. Meanwhile, Google will be beavering away on internal stuff (probably on version 2 of implementation internally by this point) and readying a public release product. Google will quickly snap up the top 30% of the hard core of evangelists to staff the new consumer-facing department and launch the product.

They'll start slow, but subsidize heavily. The idea is to gain market share. The 70% of evangelists who weren't bought up will be cranking out applications like mad in the vain hope of getting hired at Google, driving a new explosion of interest and the foundations of a real ecosystem. The hardware will slowly creep up in price to just above 1.5x cost. It will stabilize here.

Google, meanwhile, will have had it's minions building an entire ecosystem delivery apparatus around the software layer and slowly start to "own" the ARM server market. Other competitors will have entered by this point, but they won't make a real volume dent.

By this point, we're 7-10 years out and Google will be on the 4th or 5th iteration of its hardware internally and will already have a sub-department filled with PhDs devoted to driving innovation in all areas of ARM server design that will give it a massive leg up on competitors. Those designs will find their way into the "consumer" product a few years later creating an ecosystem cycle much like the GFS/Hadoop one.

Overall, Google will have accomplished several goals:

1) reduced the cost of it's own infrastructure.

2) kickstart a "physicalisation" movement (likely complete with the ability to "vMotion" workloads on physical hardware the same way we can virtual ones. HA, Fault Tolerance, etc will all rear their heads.)

3) remove the "ownership" of the server market from Microsoft, Unix/Non-Google Linux and VMware.

4) made server applications something that can be - and increasingly will be - delivered through it's "Play" store (necessary for Google to retain control while allowing other manufacturers to bear the R&D burden of actually making the kit for punters.)

5) created a movement towards the TRUE integration of on premises server apps with cloud-based processing and application provisioning (only really possible if you create an ecosystem with zero legacy).

6) create an "enterprise" component to it's IT offering that suddenly makes ChromeOS and Android relevant in a way that they can't be today. (True app-store delivered integration of everything, backed by central Google Cloud processing, Google-based authentication, etc.)

Ultimately, it would lead to a completely new way of thinking about resource usage, data storage, identity, security and so forth because this new ecosystem simply wouldn't have the x86 legacy. It would start small, face fierce resistance and struggle for every inch of ground...but Google's gotten good at managing the human side of these sorts of things. They know how to create evangelists, create an ecosystem and offload the risk (and most of the heavy lifting) onto the community, swooping in only once the model has proven itself to cream the profits.

Worst case scenario, none of the above materializes, but Intel absolutely pisses itself in terror and starts busting a nut to prevent the ARMpocalypse. Google then gets cheaper servers and the ability to bully Intel for the next two decades.

Either way, Google wins.

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Microsoft's licence riddles give Linux and pals a free ride to virtual domination

Trevor_Pott
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Uhhhh...what?

Essentials Plus is less than $5500 for 3 servers and offers everything you could possibly want, virtualisation-wise, including backups and VCSA. Look, I've been accused by some of being "the big voice of small business." I'm a cranky, pro-SMB type who is always looking to grind costs...

...but you're talking bollocks.

Item Description Qty Unit Price Total

CORE Supermicro FatTwin F627G3-F73PT+ 1 $5,304.00 $5,304.00

CPU Intel Xeon E5-2609 8 $309.00 $2,472.00

RAM 16GB DDR3 ECC REG 64 $158.00 $10,112.00

LAN Dual-port Intel X540 included 1 $0.00 $0.00

RUST 4TB WD WD4000F9YZ 8 $269.99 $2,159.92

FLASH Crucial CT480M500SSD1 480GB 8 $316.99 $2,535.92

HV VMware Essentials Plus Kit 1 $5,439 $5,439.00

TOTAL $28,022.84

Even the companies I support can afford that. VMware essentials plus gives you licensing for 3 nodes - in this case hella beefy ones - and this configuration gives you an entire cold spare node for under $30K.

So what the fucking fuck are you on about?

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: Monkey trap maybe . . .

The option of checking the source doesn't help you if you don't have the time, skills or money to do so.

The Linux Kernel is a small, small fraction of a distribution.

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: Monkey trap maybe . . .

A) Legacy systems with massive sunk investment and which would take even more massive investment to migrate away from.

B) Please link me to even one independent code review (let alone a hardcore security audit!) of an entire Linux distro. The many eyes and many hands contributing commits include those of the NSA.

I'm all for Linux, but you're talking bollocks.

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Trevor_Pott
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It's not really "not wanting to do an Apples to Apples comparison" so much as it is "wanting to cut through marketing malarky."

Microsoft crows about sticker price (using very carefully defined scenarios). VMware screams about TCO (again, using very carefully defined, enterprise-only scenarios). The answer is very much so in between.

You answer is very much the same with the discounts schemes of the two as it is with the retail pricing. VMware is better as the low end and at the scale end. Microsoft absolutely cleans up in the middle. But neither one is guaranteed to be a better deal than the other unless you analyze the very specific cases for each customer. Microsoft is not cheaper than VMware. If can be, in some circumstances, but it also can be a lot more expensive.

For Microsoft to be cheaper you have to be working in Microsoft guest OS licensing and presuming (heavily) that these will be the predominant VMs in use. That's less and less the case these days. CentOS is spreading like a weed in the datacenter, even in enterprises that were traditionally Microsoft shops!

In addition, you are presuming that Hyper-V and VMware are equal. They aren't. My experience shows you can cram more VMs per host in almost any given environment onto VMware infrastructure than Microsoft, lower your costs there as well.

I'm not even touching the OpEx costs with a stick except to say that OpsMan is way easier to use. That's a subjective thing.

I'm no VMware fanboy here. I'm not a Microsoft fanboy either. I think both companies charge way to much and screw us all up and down the pipe...but in the real world neither has a decided advantage. Both have areas of strength and weakness, in operation as well as pricing.

Microsoft was best for the hobbiest. Well, until they killed technet. Fuckers.

VMware owns the up-to-three-node space. Microsoft owns the space between that at somewher ein the middle of the commercial midmarket. From there VMware takes over again for a spell. There's a brief area around the "this turns into proper enterprise territory" where Microsoft is cheaper for a bit again and then VMware is going to consistently be cheaper.

With very few exceptions, retail pricing means bupkus and is only a fraction of the costs that have to be worried about. Neither solution exists in isolation. It's not just the licensing that's an issue, it's that - quite frankly - almost nobody buys "full stack from one vendor" solutions. This is on some instances a purely price issue. In most others, however, it's because the OpEx costs of third party offerings are so significant that they outweigh any benefits of the "complete stack" play.

Maybe if this were 2006, where Microsoft was ascendant and a virtual monopoly in the datacenter it would be easier to call. But they're not, and they won't ever be again.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have some CentOS templates to build.

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Trevor_Pott
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Except that only a very narrow slice of the market uses retail licensing. At the SMB side, you're using the SMB packages and by commercial midmarket size you're arguing volume licensing. Something VMware builds a LOT more flexibility into.

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: KVM = fastest Windows Virtualisation performance

"That's a laughable test with *MULTIPLE* VMs - just piling it as high as they can - KVM can't manage 1,000,00 IOPS in a *SINGLE* VM - which tests the true scalability of the hypervisor..."

[Redacted], Redmondian hyper-shill. Who the [redacted] runs one VM per host? KVM is good enough for Google, which makes it better than anything the rest of the world has. Google's tech > the rest of the world.

Added bonus: they don't posses an Empire of Sadness.

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Trevor_Pott
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"Cost of Hyper-V + FULL System Centre Suite is MUCH cheaper than even base vSphere + Virtual Centre costs"

Completely untrue. Especially at scale, or down for the SMB level. (VMware Essentials Plus for the win.)

Begone, Empire of Sadness hyper-shill. [Redacted]!!!

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: Microsoft licensing is a bitch.

Yes. It's VDI licensing. I believe I was very clear about that. It doesn't change the fact that Microsoft licensing is a bithc, nor that every single person who works for The Empire of Sadness should [redacted] into [redacted] and then [redacted] [redacted] [redacted].

And the horse they rode in on!

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Trevor_Pott
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"It's effectively free - it's covered under Software Assurance that you pay on your ELA."

Okay, *YOU* are a Microsoft shill. Flat out. The bald-faced assumption that everyone pays a subscription fee and presenting this not only as a fait accompli but "normal" (without any comment or provision for the other 80% of businesses in the G8 nations) shows you attempting to push Micfosoft's preferred vision of the world in defiance of what the majority of the world actually looks like.

In fact, you're probably an operative of The Empire of Sadness. I hope you [redacted] and [redacted] you [redacted].

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Trevor_Pott
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You needed a real OS to perform any work.

Which is why Windows 7's growth exceeds that of Windows 8. *ba dum tish*

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Trevor_Pott
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As someone who is up on Microsoft licensing I can only say that there are reasons why I refer to Microsoft's licensing department as the Empire of Sadness.

After war criminals and a few select violent sociopaths, those who people the Empire of Sadness are, in my opinion the worst individuals our species has to offer.

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: Virtuozzo licensing has no benefits over any other hypervisor

Trust the Empire of Sadness to have per-emptively prevented innovation yet again.

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Trevor_Pott
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It's entirely fair. Unlike Windows 8, which was a counter-rotating clusterfuck of pain, shame and psychological abuse, Server 2012 is a truly excellent operating system that was significantly improved by Server 2012 R2.

Whereas the people responsible for the major design decisions of Windows 8 deserve to be [redacted] with [redacted] and [goats, again, really?] and then [nobody deserves exposure to the Empire of Sadness. Not even the endpoint team], the Server geeks did a fucking fantastic job and delivered a great operating system worth the full price upgrade.

It was not, however, worth the $2000 price hike on top of the full price, nor the gutting of SPLA of the annihilation of partner rebates.

But hey, my CentOS installations have gone up 2400% in the past 4 months. The price of rice is just too much for China...

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: I think the problem goes even deeper..

Technet's dead, Jim. And MSDN is beyond the means of your average non-enterprise sysadmin and many SMBs.

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Trevor_Pott
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Microsoft licensing is a bitch.

I'll just link this here.

There's more to licensing re: vritualisation than the OS shenanigans.

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Munich signs off on Open Source project

Trevor_Pott
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@Turtle

It takes me an average of 6 years to move a company 85% of Microsoft and 10 years to hit 100%. A decade seems reasonable. It takes time to recode applications to standard or find/wait for applications that third parties are making to to replace ones that have no open source alternative.

But the transitions get made, and the savings are considerable. Enough to hire full time developers (even in SMBs!) to contribute back to the community by taking the applications coded internally and open sourcing them.

Every transition away from Microsoft that I've done helps to serve as an enabler for others. Maybe one day so many of these will have been done that a critical mass is reached and the bulk of businesses start walkung away from the chains.

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Trevor_Pott
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Hey Microsoft marketing shill: why is a decade to slowly disentangle oneself from a vendor a bad thing? It sounds like it is being done carefully, methodically and permanently. It is taking most of my clients similar timeframes to leave the MS ecosystem, but once out, they're out! After that they never have to go back.

Is it expensive up front? Yes. But it pays for itself after one refresh cycle.. Then the next refresh cycle comes along and holy shit savings.

Microsoft is obviously paying you too much, it seems like you have so much money you've forgotten just how burdensome their licensing is on people and corporations that actually have to pay Microsoft's ransom out of their own pockets.

Let me make this perfectly simple for you - and please, do take this up the chain to your masters in Redmond - Microsoft will not be well recieved by the technology community (or by Register readers) until it makes massive changes to it's licensing regime.

We do not object to paying a fair amount for out software, despite what you and your masters think. In fact, we see value in paying for ongoing support and to have someone take various burdens of support and testing off of our hands. Microsoft's fees are absolutely in no way fair or reasonable.

The body Microsoft and I cannot be friends until the fucking fix VDI licensing. That includes the SPLA potion of the exercise.

I think a lot of people here are Microsoft Partners (I am, for one), and they are sick of 15% hike after 15% hike and the dramatic narrowing of their margins. a 50% hike in the cost of Datacenter earned Microsoft no friends, nor has the utter failure to listen to their customers, partners and end users when it comes to the design of their operating systems.

If you want to peddle your shit then you have to start listening to the people who you are demanding buy said shit.

That so many - first one, then two and now an ever accelerating amount - feel that the price of leaving the Microsoft ecosystem is one worth paying should be something that causes you and yours to sit up and take notice, not vitriol, FUD and marketing. The readers of The Register are a canny bunch; far too bright to be taken in by Microsoft's bullshit.

You have the reactions of the masses to your marketing messages. Please, go take those to the next meeting and have and honest discussion about your messages will be met. Maybe you can convince your boss that the best way to meet the marketing challenge of Munich's success is to convince the Empire of Sadness to start making licensing less horrific.

It's a hell of a lot easier to market a good product than to try to shovel shit and proclaim it gold.

Come back after the meeting and let's try this again with the modified marketing message to hand. The existing one is....awful.

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: €30 million @Chemist 09:18

"That it costs say far less say to run Windows 7 than Windows NT on an enterprise desktop is a well established fact with widely accepted TCO figures to back it up...,.,"

OH NO YOU FUCKING DON'T

You lay into someone for not providing figured in their post and then you outright lie in a comment and don't back it up? Fuck you with charging rhinoceros, covered in 2 inches of gelatinous capsaicin! And you had damned well better provide facts and figured that proove that the operating system alone provides in millions of dollars worth of productivity enhancements to all cognitive classes (as people are different in how they process information) over a deployment size of around 15000.

Live by the FUD, die by the FUD.

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: €30 million @Chemist 09:18

Waitaminute. I need to get this straight here. Are you - the AC Microsoft shill - actually cracking? ARe you attacking someone because they didn't provide facts and figures? Despite months of you spooging made up, outdated or outright bullshit figures all over the comments section?

You live by the FUD, buddy and you die by the FUD.

Munich paid a one-time ding to buy their freedom. Would that we could all afford the cost.

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NSA alleges 'BIOS plot to destroy PCs'

Trevor_Pott
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Re: @Trevor_Potts

You mean like these drones?

I never said it was a highly militarized border, only that it was a militarized border. It is not one of trust. It is one where drones track you and men with guns prevent you from driving (or flying) across as you choose. It as once the world's longest undefended border. In my youth. Now it's not. Simple as.

And yes, to me, that's militarized. Maybe it's not to you, but you've had so much kool-aid who the fuck knows how you interpret things? "Other borders are more militarized this this doesn't count" would be my guess. It seems to be the kind of logic you've been employing this far.

As for "they'll help your reading comprehension", no I don't mean "it'll". I was referring to the voices in your head. Do they come in via transmitter? CONFORM. CONSUME. OBEY. Seems about right.

Maybe if you have to put up with being hauled into the room with the overly bright lights and the condescending people with loaded guns every time you cross the border you'd see things differently. Maybe not.

CONFORM/CONSUME/OBEY

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: @tom dial

No, those people with sand and more sand aren't worth worrying about. Yes, they killed some people> It was tragic. Futile attempts to prevent this from recurring are not an acceptable excuse for giving up our rights.

That our countries have organisations whose mission it is to conduct clandestine operations doesn't mean they should have those organisations or that if we must have said organisations that they should be given the kinds of panopticon powers that they have obtained.

That you are unable to comprehend how both regular abuses of power (everything from NSA operatives using their access to track lovers to the IRS targeting political opponents) and elected representatives not bowing to the overwhleming will of the people makes a democracy is pretty fucking sad. The people in charge aren't listening to those who elected them and many are abusing their privileges. This seems perfectly okay by you, business as normal, no need to question it or demand change.

Shut up and like it, eh?

It doesn't matter how many extrajudicial killings there have been. One is too much. One torture is too much. One abuse of power that occurs without consequence to those performing the abuse is too much.

You propose to not only allow those in power to keep their privileges, but to heap upon them more? For what? The 9/11 boogyman?

You have allowed yourself to buy into the propaganda. For reasons incomprehensible you actually seem to thing those in charge of the US are "the good guys." They aren't. They're people, no different form most of us. (Well, actually, statistically you'd find a far higher percentage of sociopaths in the halls of power, but let's set that to one side for a moment.)

Absolute power corrupts absolutely. They have too much power and they use for ill far too often. I do not want them having that power over me. Plain and simple.

I don't find it okay for them to have the power of dragnet surveillance at all. No discussion about "appropriate use" is possible because no appropriate use of dragnet surveillance is possible.

I have no issue with targeted surveillance, but that is a world away from the shit going on now.

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Trevor_Pott
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@Slawek

Hitting the kool-aid a little hard there, aren't you?

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: @tom dial

You don't seem to get it. Any situation in which our metadata is being collected in a dragnet fashion is unacceptable. It doesn't matter if it's the FBI, GCHQ, the NSA, the RCMP or the fucking IRS. If you want to investigate a person then you get a fucking warrant for that person and that's that.

You do not trawl through data looking for "suspicious patterns" and use that as justification to trawl through the data! You do not keep a lifetime's worth of metadata (or even a year's worth!) and go back in time to peer through someone's life and find every minor mistake they ever made based on some broken suspicion that a cranky neighbor had that might be leaving our more than the maximum number of bags of garbage.

You keep talking as though it is okay for us to give up our rights. That it is inevitable and that it is an acceptable and natural consequence of...what, exactly? Protection from the boogyman?

Whether the breach today is the FBI or tomorrow the IRS it makes no nevermind. Human beings in positions of power over other human beings abuse that power. It doesn't matter which agency they belong to. The more power you give them to peer into our lives the more harm they will do. The totality of human history is a fucking testament to this fact!

Noone can be trusted with the kind of power represented by unfettered access to our metadata, let alone the communications data in full. Noone.

Any use of technological assets to collect information about an individual must be narrowly targeted, only records relevant to the narrow warrant collected and retained and the entire process carefully reviewed by independent civil rights organisations. (Rotated out so as to prevent regulatory capture.)

The NSA has already been seen to give information to the DEA and then tell them to lie about the source. How long before their databases are used to raid journalists, a practice already underway? You argue that agencies are isolated and that evidence of malfeasance in one isn't evidence that it will occur in another.

I say that the totality of human history says that absolute power corrupts absolutely, and given that the US government in general has thrown out the presumption of innocence as regards proles I think the NSA - and any other TLA - need to prove their innocence. After all, we don't have the means to investigate their guilt. It's all hush-hush tip-top super secret stuff that proles aren't allowed to see.

No TLA cna be trusted with our privacy. No amount of bureaucracy can make dragnets okay. Nothing can justify dragnets. is that clear enough? Or are there more predictable bits of apologist newsspeak you'd like to trot out?

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@HIt_Snooze

You mean the militarized border partrolled by drones? It hasn't been "the world's longest undefended border" for some years now. Also, In case you hadn't noticed, Canadians have to present passports and go through all manner of security theater today that we didn't have to 20 years ago. Things have changed, buddy.

I do understand entirely how the conservative assholes currently in charge of our nation have sold us down the river, but that doesn't make America our friend. It just means America has co-opted out leadership. America is very much the enemy of the Canadian people. Just ask anyone who has had their livelihood destroyed by the US refusing to abide by NAFTA while simultaneously using any minor Canadian oversight of that same treaty as a an excuse for extortionate economic protectionism.

Participation in things like "five eyes" is not exactly with the consent of the Canadian people. It is largely against the will of the people but often done to ensure our survival. Not from the threat of the Muslim boogyman...but from that of America.

I've said it before, and I'll say it again. (Try reading it slowly, maybe they'll help your comprehension.)

America is not Canada's friend. It is our master. The slave is never friends with one who would purport to own them.

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@tom dial

"Cost effective" is not a consideration. Our freedoms are not for sale at any price, certainly not as protection against boogymen. Regardless of how large their sticks.

And frankly, yes, I do view the US as a tyranny. As an example: 95% of her people support mandatory background checks on guns. That cannot make it through government. The same amount support restrictions on automatic firearms. *crickets*

The US government murders civilians without trial - their own, as well as civilians. It uses the IRS against political opponents, attacks the freedom of the press, suppresses dissent with violence and imprisons people in perpetuity without trial.

That you have patriotism wrapped up in that nation doesn't change the fact that their so-called "democracy" is a sham, the republic is broken and they are treating both their own citizens and their allies with contempt and outright hostility.

The people with sand and more sand aren't the ones we need to be worried about. The ones in charge of the US government are.

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@tom dial

Feeding my metadata into the machine so that I can be mistakenly Jean Charles de Menezesed based on some trial-less "guilt by association" cranked out by an algorithm is being fucking tracked.

Too tinfoil hat for you? Too bad. The burden of proof is on your government now, not those who just want to be left alone.

Or will I be targeted for tax audits because of my political group? Have my e-mails raided because I'm a journalist? Be thrown in gitmo because I work with whistleblowers?

Computer says no. Your life, thus, goes bye-bye. And you're okay with this?!?

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@Hit Snooze

You're delusional. Canada is subjugated by the US. The US isn't "on our team" in any way. Were we on the same team as the US they would treat us as equals, not serfs. They do not.

Fro the record, I lobby my government strongly to distance ourselves from the US, politically, economically and militarily. I don't view the US as remotely trustworthy and I sure as hell don't view them as a Canadian ally.

Even if our government is complicit in selling the rights and freedoms of Canadians off to the US for a pat on the head, there's a fair amount of cultural difference between the two nations; far more than I am going ot get into here. Suffice ti to say that I would cheerfully accept a much lower standard of living if it meant that my country would cut ties with the USA.

After all, unlike you, I'm fully capable of understanding that the only "team" the US is on is the one where the very elite of the elite in the US win and everyone else loses. Though i can understand how you could be blind to it if you're raised amongst enough nationalism and propaganda.

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@Wzrd1 Re: @Christian Berger

The comment was directed at me, personally. Where have I been plotting to kill people? I was told that I, personally, should be on one of those lists for non-conformance. Why?

You're the pro NSA scaremonger. Explain to me why I deserve to be monitored, tracked, and have my rights removed?

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@Wzrd1

If you honestly believe - or worse, would encourage - that your military would turn B52 bombers, AC130 gunships, AH64 gunships, AH1 gunships, 105mm and 155mm howitzers, 120mm and 81mm mortars on their own civilian population and choose to do nothing about it then you're a fucking sociopath.

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@Wzrd1

In the past 235 calendar years the US has been at peace for only 21 of them. Who cares if the US is at war? That doesn't remove from them the requirement to act with honour. After all, they're always at war. If being at war removes the requirement for them to behave we need to, as a planet, cut them the fuck off. Blockade, isolate, cease trading with, you name it.

They can't be allowed to act with impunity just because they can't seem to learn to leave others alone.

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@Marshalltown

I don't fear middle easterners with sand, sticks and more sand. I fear the very real abuses of power by the very fallible humans in positions of power in the countries I actually visit.

"Security" is protection from the overreach of the people in power over you. Privacy is part and parcel of that (but extends to the right to be free from interference and snooping by other proles and companies as well.)

"Terrorists" are just a boogyman. A rock from space could fall on me too. I'm far more likely to get killed by a drunk driver or the toxic (and radioactive) emissions from a dirty coal plant. If the price of freedom (and actual security) is that every now and again we fail to stop a lunatic that we probably wouldn't have been able to stop even in the panopticon...I'll take it.

If an individual is prepared to martyr themselves in order to strike at a target there's not a whole hell of a lot you can do to stop them. Our freedoms are not an acceptable price for the obsession of some with trying.

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@Christian Berger

So you are saying that if an individual doesn't conform to the whims of those in power he deserves neither security nor privacy? Conform or expect to be on a watchlist?

Jesus, what a fucked up worldview you have.

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NSA: not OK.

I'm not a US person and as such you can eat a sack of

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Keeping warm in winter the el Reg way: Setting a NAS box ON FIRE

Trevor_Pott
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Re: And this beats Glacier...how?

You expect everyone to have cloudy everything because you're a cloudy cheerleader who has a miserable time understanding the downsides. (You posint history speaks to your bias quite well.)

Like price.

Glacier is far more expensive than something like an IOsafe. You also can't sweat assets you don't own. That's before we get into the cost of bandwidth, the cost of recovery and the time it takes to recover.

Additionally, you're far too cavalier about security; currently, there is no way (short of one time pads, or you uploading everything heavily encrypted to begin with) that you can keep any data in the American cloud safe from the NSA. SSL is broken. Any key that lives with the provider belongs to the NSA. If you encrypt on your side before pushing up, you can't do WAN optimization.

The American public cloud is only an option for rich Americans. It's a stupid plan for the rest of humanity, period.

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Microsoft rallies channel troops: Sell, sell, sell our spanking new 'Cloud OS'

Trevor_Pott
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Re: history repeating itself, why?

Hey, uh, MS shill dude...you know how RedHat made Linux Enterprise class?

PistonCloud is the RedHat of Openstack. Keep an eye out next year for lots on them. They've made my list of "companies Trevor is interested in" and I expect I'll be testing their stuff in my lab rather a lot.

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Trevor_Pott
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0/10 Troll harder next time

Do not tempt me.

Exactly how dumb are you anyways? There are a dozen people who frequent these forums that could tear you a new one so comprehensively you'd be a gibbering mess rocking back and forth in a corner tearing out your own hair. Please don't lower our collective opinion of Microsoft's deep web and social media contractors even more than it already is. You should know better by now.

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Microsoft: Here, we'll make it easy for you Gmail lot. Meet our Outlook.com movers

Trevor_Pott
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That's right guys, web developers don't all hate IE any more.

Some people carve designs into their own flesh with dull, rested, unsterilized bits of metal.

I don't think they're sane either.

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What does the post-Snowden internet need? A price list

Trevor_Pott
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With IPv6 the IP = device = person.

With NSA++ secret superpowers the OS/App/Router/Lightbulb/Whatever = trojan

Your browser tracks you.

Your apps track you.

Your logins track you.

Ads track you.

Encryption is cracked.

Cloudy providers can (and will) be compelled to give up your data.

The only privacy you have is keeping your data under your own control at all times and erecting a truly paranoid defense setup. There are no rights against unreasonable search or seizure on the internet.

In fact, if you're a prole, there really are no rights for you on the internet at all.

This is the future that the "awesome" CEO in question embraces. Profit uber alles.

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Is it a NAS? Is it a SAN? No. It's Synology's Rackstation 'NASSAN'

Trevor_Pott
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Roughly 1.2x what it would if you were to just put that drive in a standalone system and use something like DBAN to write all 0s on a single pass. (At least if it's anything like it's smaller brethren.) The system tends to be operational during the rebuild process.

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Re: Where's...

Hey Frank. This is another one of those replies that has turned into an an article all on it's own. You should see it early next week...

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Re: @Trevor_Pott

No you are being purposefully obtuse. I never said including products from QNAP was impossible, and you know that.

I said that it would be impossible for The Register to purchase everything it reviewed as it doesn't make enough on each article to cover the cost of the hardware to be purchased.

What I said - and what you are purposefully refusing to acknowledge - is that it is up to QNAP to submit things to The Register. QNAP hasn't submitted a unit for testing, so they don't have a review. I can't speak for Chris Mellor, but they don't even send me press releases, so they don't get published here.

If I went through those other sites - through any site that does reviews - I could find tens of thousands of products they haven't reviewed. Even in narrow categories all but the most popular and definitive sites for that category are going to have product (and even entire companies) missing.

In some cases the reason a product is missing is prejudice on behalf of the publication. In almost all cases, however, it is because the PR firm hired to represent the vendor simply didn't bother to contact the publication.

If you want QNAP to be reviewed, ask them to contact The Register. We are not going to buy a QNAP to review any more than we are going to buy an EMC unit to review or buy 25 Juniper switches and set up a full-bore SDN.

Getting reviewed is on the vendor. We'll publish interesting news, but we aren't going to go broke doing reviews. I don't care how much you, personally like this one vendor. It is the principle of the thing: if we bought review equipment that costs more than we'd make from writing the article for one vendor we'd have to do it for all. That's objectivity and neutrality.

If we did that then The Register wouldn't exist.

So why do don't you take your moaning and go bother QNAP's PR people. They're the ones who aren't doing their jobs.

To be clear: the job of The Register and her journalists is emphatically not to become paupers because you have a cracked view of reality. Cheers.

Edited to add: For the record, I've checked my e-mail and I have personally asked QNAP for review gear twice. Neither occasion even elicited a response. I've asked about for gear form other vendors. You don't get to climb on your high horse and whinge that The Register hasn't done it's job. We've asked twice more than we should have to. We won't ask again.

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Re: @Trevor_Pott

But it's not a shame. That's the entire point here. Why should El Reg do what you're proposing? What's the justification and rationale? Where's the impetus or the benefit? What does this add to their coverage, or to their approach to journalism?

More to the point, when did it become The Register's duty to review every item in a given space? How could they be reasonably expected to even be aware of all vendors in a space - or all developments in a space - unless the PR people hired by those same vendors actually do their jobs?

I'm not simply saying "that's the way it is." I'm saying your entire viewpoint is cracked, if not outright broken. Just how big do you think The Register is? It's one of the largest technology magazines in the world but I promise you it doesn't have the manpower to cover everything that goes on in all segments of IT. Do you have any comprehension of how big the IT industry is?

This is why things like PR companies exist. They exist to write press releases and get the attention and interest of reporters. Reporters look at the world around them - press releases, equipment they own, equipment they work with, etc - and make judgement calls about what's newsworthy and what's not.

A magazine like The Register is made up of several individual reporters, all working more or less independently, with a centralized e-mail address for blind submissions and a ruthless, jaded disenfranchised editor picking only the most interesting submissions from that e-mail and writing about them.

As a freelance writer, as a columnist for The Register and as someone who is building up his own technology magazine I simply don't comprehend how you expect it to work any differently. Not only do I not understand how you think it can work differently, I fail to understand why you think it should.

I don't publish every press release that hits my inbox, but I won't even know about a product launch unless it hits my inbox, so how could I write about it?

Similarly, The Register - or any technology magazine, news organization or what-have-you that you could name - simply cannot spend more than they earn.

You appear to either be decrying the moral injustice of The Register not spending more buying kit to review than they'd ever make off of publishing that review or your understanding of the amount of money an organization like The Register makes is utterly, completely broken. The Register can't spend money in the manner you're suggesting because it doesn't have it to spend. Nobody does.

So I am very curious about which category you fall into. Are you really an entitled prat who believes others should pay money for the privilege of doing your bidding, or are you just not comprehending the (increasingly tight) economics of journalism?

"It's a shame you don't do the impossible" isn't a remotely valid criticism or either the reporter or the magazine. At best it's a vain lament.

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Inside Steve Ballmer’s fondleslab rear-guard action

Trevor_Pott
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Re: If tablets are so ...

Because people want a consumptive device to consume content. Simples.

They already have a productivity device (PC) that works just fine...and are evne continuing to buy those productivity devices in the hundreds of millions each year.

There will always be more consumers of content than creators of content. That doesn't make a devices designed to consume content remotely useful for creating it.

Unless you're into selfies. In which case, go hard.

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It's true, the START MENU is coming BACK to Windows 8, hiss sources

Trevor_Pott
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Mushroom

Re: Will these updates...

You're right; change happens. Nothing compels us to accept it as is. We have every right to fight that change, or to work to create yet more change which better suits our needs.

We're not stuck with anything. We can protest, we can vote with our wallets, we can direct resources into creating the alternatives we need. There are always options available, even if the only one left is revolution.

You have to deal with that, as the above is reality. But fuck you, sir, we don't have to deal with your bullshit assertions at all.

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