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* Posts by Trevor_Pott

4596 posts • joined 31 May 2010

Death of the business Desktop

Trevor_Pott
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Renting your stuff only makes sense if the price isn't ruinous. With Microsoft's cloudy fuckgasm the price is beyond ruinous and well into "obscene." Microsoft's NSA-friendly cloudjsm only looks even remotely attractive if you

A) believe that upgrading every generation is a benefti, to which I I say "Vista, Exchange 2007, Ribbon Bar, Windows 8, VS colour-free edition" and so on and so forth.

B) You upgrade every two years. To which I say "I still have an active installed base of hardware and software over 10 years old and it works just fine, thank you."

Microsoft is trying to use their cloudspooge as a means of making people more, more often. Oddly enough, people want to pay less and pay that less often. SMBs believe a reasonable refresh cycle is 6 years, maybe 10. Microsoft believes it should be every 2 years, maybe 1. And retraining everyone to deal with their lobotomised-monkey interfaces is the problem of the client. (You will adapt to service Microsoft!)

In what universe is that remotely equivalent to leasing a car?

You lease cars you get a choice. You can even hang on to the existing units by extending the lease. You don't get these kinds of choices in the GOOGLE/MICROSOFT/ETC STOP MOVING MY FUCKING BUTTONS cloudy touch-enabled testicle-waving kinect-based future.</ragequit>

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: *ahem*

I can't tell you how I really feel. I still occasionally have to cross the border into the US and the NSA monitors everything. Free speech is dead. Fear big brother, because I sure as fuck do.

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: *ahem*

If I could get my hands on the poxy whoresons responsible for this spectacular clusterfuck "interviewing" these wretched accretions of mewling fundamental evil would be the singularly last thing that came to mind.

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Trevor_Pott
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*ahem*

Original text the below quote is here.

VDI

If System Center licensing required a spreadsheet and a cheat-sheet, to truly understanding VDI you’re going to need a young priest, an old priest and possibly a bottle or six of scotch. To start with, VDI has a few different flavours.

The first is Remote Desktop Services (RDS) - otherwise known as Terminal Server - in which multiple users log into a single Windows Server instance. With the new Fair Share feature and a lot of the enhancements to RemoteFX in RDS, this is a method worth considering if only for the simplicity of it all. You licence the appropriate number of Windows Server virtual instances to host the number of users you require, you buy a Windows Server CAL and an RDS CAL for each user and you’re done.

The extension to this is that you can give each user their own virtual machine by simply buying a Windows Server Datacenter license and spinning up one Server VM per user. This method was popularly considered a neat way to sidestep the byzantine complexity that Microsoft’s Vista/Windows-7-era VDI licensing was, as WS2012 allows two administrators to connect to the operating system without needing RDS installed.

Microsoft has explicitly forbidden this approach; if you are using instances of WS2012 as individual VMs for your users, you must get an RDS CAL for each user. Unlike the traditional RDS approach, however, your users can have their own VMs.

Microsoft’s official stance is that VDI is best done by using a Windows Client operating system. This is where things get dark. The intuitive licensing approach - buying a copy of Windows XP, 7, or 8, installing it in a VM and letting your users have at it - is explicitly outside of compliance. As soon as you put Windows Client inside a virtual machine - or remotely access a physical machine through RDP - you must licence the client device as well.

There are some basics to VDI licensing for Windows Client operating systems to know. Microsoft offers a licence called Virtual Device Access (VDA) which costs $100 per year. It is available only through volume licensing; signing a volume licensing agreement means agreeing to have Microsoft audit you each year, so make sure you have your ducks in a row. VDA licenses apply to client devices. Windows endpoints covered under Software Assurance (SA) have VDA rights and so do not need to pay this fee.

A single Windows VDA license allows that endpoint to be RDPed into a maximum of four Windows Client instances simultaneously. You must hold as many VDA licenses as you have thin clients and non-SA-covered endpoints accessing the VDI environment.

Extended Roaming Rights are another critical concept. Any device covered under VDA or SA allows the user to access a Windows Client from up to four x86 devices, so long as those devices are outside the corporate firewall. This is designed to allow users to access their work PC from home, or a personal laptop.

If that personal device - the canonical example is the personal Macbook - is brought into the office, then it is considered part of the work environment and must be covered by VDA or SA.

To summarise: if you have a PC at work covered by SA or VDA then you can access up to 4 VDI instances of a Windows Client operating system. You can use up to four computers not owned by the company outside of the corporate premises to access those same VDI instances. If you stop using your Macbook at the Starbucks across from the office, walk into the office with it and use it to RDP into a work VM, then that Macbook must be covered by VDA or SA.

ARM devices are licensed differently. If your company covers its PCs with Software Assurance and buys you a Windows RT tablet, then you can access a Windows Client instance from that Windows RT device.

Corporate-owned iOS, Android, Blackberry or other ARM devices must purchase a Windows Companion Subscription Licence. CSLs are per-user and cover up to four companion devices. Personally-owned ARM devices - including Windows RT devices - must be licensed under a CSL to access a Windows Client operating system.

None of the above brings Intune or Office 365 into the discussion, considers diskless PCs, or attempts to explain licensing Office in a virtual environment. It is not intended to offer exacting guidance: VDI licensing can change at any moment, and making sure you get the best possible set of licenses for your deployment can involve factors beyond those discussed above. It is always best to discuss your VDI plans with your VAR or Microsoft rep.

If possible, try to get a stamp of approval from MS on your deployment before you deploy. Remember that the burden of auditing is on the business - not Microsoft - and you may be asked to verify your compliance every year. It is strongly recommended that anyone considering VDI invest heavily in automated compliance tools. You’ll need them.

Personal take

The long and short for me: I clocked my access in 2012 to my home XP VM at just over 300 devices. At $100/device/month for "remote usage rights" Microsoft would have me pay $30K/year to access my home VM. Of course, I can't access my home VM because I can't get remote usage rights without SA. I can't have SA without being a company. So I the initial cost for just that one licence is up a few thousand as well.

If I want to stand up the ability to allow my staff to access Windows 7 instances from any device anywhere in the world it is going to cost, and cost and cost. Every new endpoint that connects is $100/device/year, and Office is yet more.

Microsoft says "just use Server + TS and use shims to fool apps." Sadly, I have a number of apps that won't work on Server and for which shims have not been - and likely never will be - written. Microsoft's response is "tough titties." (That's not even getting into a Server licence + CALs, etc is a hell of an entry-level buy in for someone to access a home VM, or an SMB worker to use a centrally provided desktop on the road.)

For me, I am dumping every last spare dollar into both supporting Weyland/Weston with the new FreeRDP compositor and porting my apps to Linux (for graphics intensive stuff) and standards/HTML delivery (for everything else.) Until Weyland/Weston/FreeRDP are ready to rock on RHEL/CentOS (a few years yet) then VDI just isn't something we can afford.

Your mileage will vary.

We are the Beast of Redmond.

Lower your expectations and surrender your productivity.

You will use both biological and technological means to accomplish what should doable with technology alone (we won't licence the technology to the likes of you.)

Your business will adapt to service us.

Resistance is futile.

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Why build a cloud when you can get one ready made?

Trevor_Pott
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Re: Trevor Potts = Snow Patrol fan?

There's no S in my family name, you pugnacious troglodyte.

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: Where's the real Trevor!

Your brain only has two states, doesn't it? Everything is binary. 1 or 0. I loathe Microsoft's licensing department with the burning passion of 10,000 suns. I think the endpoint people are the organised and led by the most arrogant, out of touch douchnozzles on the face of the earth. I think Azure and Office 365 are overpriced when compared to proper alternatives and I'm not afraid for a half a second to call Microsoft on it.

That said, Microsoft does employ some of the most brilliant people in the world, their server division is amazing and Satya Nadalla actually seems to have the barest glimmerings of clue about how to price things. He might even use metrics to inform decisions rather than justify them. Where and when Microsoft is deserving of praise, has stumbled into a good idea or simply is inevitable, I will write about that too.

It is a terrible thing, however, that you can't accept the world isn't as binary are your limited mental faculties. There are other possible states; reality - not to mention human behavioural characteristics - are quantum in their diversity. When you grow up some, you might be capable of nuanced analysis rather than blatant brand tribalism. We all anticipate that day.

P.S. I don't honestly believe Canada would win a war with the US. We would, however, take so many of the bastards to hell with us as to make such a war unbelievably costly and highly unprofitable. A bunch of paupers with little more than sand and caves held off the mighty US of A. A technologically advanced nation within missile range of their major cities could inflict genocidal damage, even with good old conventional weapons. Again, however, that requires a type of complex, non-binary thinking you have clearly demonstrated yourself to be incapable - or unwilling - to be party to. More's the pity.

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: Yes, why use your brain when you can just spend money?

"Don't outsource your e-mail, use a small hosting provider."

The fuck, what?

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Berners-Lee: 'Appalling and foolish' NSA spying HELPS CRIMINALS

Trevor_Pott
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Re: Copying from the BBC

Sometimes you have to put deliberate mistakes in. I may be all writery now, but I'm still an internet troll at heart...and its/it's is the one that seems to irritate everyone the most. (Followed very closely by your/you're.)

Now I want a survey; which grammar mistakes cause the most angst amongst commenttards?

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: Copying from the BBC

You can be factually correct and still a douchebag. You're like one of them whiny little bitches whinging that "ain't is not a word" despite the fact that it's entry into common parlance has been accepted for decades.

I'm on your goddamned lawn, sir, and my dog's taking a shit. That rocking chair and shaken broom impress me not at all.

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Microsoft's so keen on touch some mice FAIL under Windows 8.1

Trevor_Pott
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@aqk

There was never anything wrong with Windows 7 (from a technological perspective) other than "snap" was on by default and the up button was missing. Snap can be disabled easily and Classic Shell fixes the up button.

The VDI licencing changes, however, were atrocious and are the only reason XP remains in my estate.

Windows 2000 was godlike. An excellent operating system that simply wasn't worth replacing until XP SP2 came around and fixed the unbelievably bad RTM release.

I said "why upgrade to Windows XP" when it was the shitty RTM release. I became a champion of Windows XP when it stopped sucking. Vista was a turd and I skipped it with the rest o fhte world. We jumped all over Windows 7 - carefully modified to suck less - almost immediately. Windows 8 is a turd and 8.1 is no better. Maybe Windows 9 will be workable. (Seriously doubt it. It'll probably be touch only, or "touch + kinect". Maybe "wave your testicles to select." If you don't have testicles, oh well, Microsoft is perfectly happy alienating half of any given market until it has cumulatively alienated everyone in all markets.)

So I call bullshit. I won't be buying Windows 8. Windows 7 lasts until 2020; I'll stick with that unless and until something better comes along. In terms of something better, let's examine:

1) OSX doesn't demand $100/endpoint/year for each endpoint I use to remotely connect to my Mac. That's a huge plus. It doesn't have a native RDP-speed remote connectivity server, that's bad. Teamviewer 9 is finally as fast as RDP, however, it eats a lot of CPU and is $600/year/user. That's still better than Microsoft's pricing - fuck you I'm not paying $30K if I use 300 different devices to connect to my home VM, which I did in 2012 - but $600/year/user for viable remote connectivity is still pretty steep.

2) Linux - in the form of Weyland - finally has an RDP server. The FreeRDP server code was ported into Weyland and it's fast. That's groovy, but the downside is that *dun dun dun*, it doesn't work yet. That said, what's on the table as a beta is damned close and it's only a couple of years out from full release. It costs me sweet fuck all to remotely access a Weyland system.

So, what to invest in? I could invest in Windows 8. Then 9. Then 10...paying Microsoft a tithe at each turn and then paying them more for the right to access that system remotely. (Thus meeting my business and workflow requirements.)

Alternately, I could take roughly one quarter of the same total amount of money I would spend on Microsoft licences and "upgrades", CALs and "remote usage rights" between today and 2020 and port every last one of the legacy Windows apps I have to Linux and/or standards-compliant HTML-5/CSS/JavaScript/etc.

I pick the latter option because once I've done it, I'm free. And I have a saleable product in the form of the apps I've just invested a few hundred thousand into porting.

This isn't about sour grapes. It's business. Microsoft is no good for the future of my company or that of my clients. As that is the case there is no logical reason to continue to use their software.

That's without even getting into "the interface sucks, Microsoft doesn't listen to customers, pushing us into an American cloud which I - as a Canadian - want nothing to do with."

I don't have to go there to determine that Microsoft is unsustainable. I just have to do the math. Is Windows licensing sustainable in the long term for my business? Absolutely not. Even supporting us on Windows 7 out to 2020 will come damned close to breaking us given the remote usage rights bullshit Microsoft makes us jump through.

The quicker the exit, the better for my business and the more money in my pocket as a business owner. That - right there - is what matters.

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: Couldn't disagree more

Bollocks

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Wanted: IT world domination. Can Spiceworks succeed?

Trevor_Pott
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Re: Wouldn't mind finding out more about Spiceworks - in the normal El Reg way.

Well, as it so happens, I actually have "a complete noob to Spiceworks" working on such an article. He's a sysadmin used to things like Nagios, Zenoss and some of the Enterprise monitoring options. I got him working on Spiceworks about a month ago. Sometime in the next few weeks his report should be ready and it'll get worked into an article.

I've been using Spiceworks for so long, I felt a more objective perspective was required...and it hasn't change that much since my last review of the software portion of the exercise a little while back. The basic MDM stuff has finally been integrated is really the big one.

As for the community bit, the closest would be Stack Exchange, excepting Stack Exchange doesn't have the deep vendor integration. And it's for developers. (Who cares about dev? It's all about ops! :P)

The unique bit about Spiceworks is honestly how they integrate vendors into the community. Ask a question in Spiceworks, get an answer. If the community itself doesn't have it, the vendors will. Play vendors off one another to see who can do best for a particular project. See if you can get a lower quote from one than another.

If Stack Exchange is a library full of nerds where other nerds go to seek sage advice then Spiceworks is "the big city" that a work crew on an out-of-town site drives into for supplies, access to consultants and to meet up with other working hands.

The ads are pretty dominating, there's no lying about that. They are typically static - no screen-dominating crap - but they occupy a fair amount of screen real-estate. You can, however, simply ad-block them and they go away. (Should you choose to do so.)

Spiceworks claims the local install doesn't even send asset management data back to the mothership. As it's on-site, any plugins, etc that you install are all on your own server. Your database lives on your network. Mostly just metrics about how you interact with the community go back to them, but that's because "the community" actually lives on their site.

Integration with vendors depends on the vendor. Some - like Juniper, HP - have begun integration projects. Some companies (LogMeIn as one example) have gone whole-hog and are deeply integrated. Others (like Teamviewer) view Spiceworks as competition for their ambitions to be the helpdesk and so have zero integration. That said, a lot of vendors are working on integration today. (This part is discussed more in depth in part 2.)

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: This article reads like an ad.

"Backhanders" from Spiceworks. *snort*

If these internet piranhas had even the faintest clue in hell how much I loathe travelling (especially flying) or the unbelievable amount of shit I have to go through every time I enter the USA*...

I go to Spiceworks because it's relevant to "my people" (sysadmins). I went to VMworld because as a newly minted vExpert I wanted to meet all the other super-cool vExperts I'd met on Twitter. Both were arduous, painful, miserable experiences I didn't enjoy in the least.

Most things I do that might generate a "backhander" by piranha standards - reviews, conferences, etc - usually cost me far more (up front or in the time spent) than I'll ever make writing a few articles. I do these because they are what generate the majority of positive comments from readers. Admittedly, via e-mails from readers, rather than in the piranha pit. The piranha pit isn't happy with anything, ever. Criticize or praise, analyze or opine, they'll be a tank of piranhas demanding you for dinner.

Well, off to bed before I become completely jaded and cynical...

*I really hate being interrogated. The lights in that damned room are too bright.

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Trevor_Pott
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That's a fair statement and an entirely reasonable complaint. I will take that under advisement when writing any future series on them, or other sysadmin-centric companies.

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: @Titus Technophobe

Now there's a thing that hadn't even occurred. I didn't see it remotely as "advertising myself" so much as "giving context." Unsurprisingly, most of the other companies involved in marketing/content creation and so forth are very leery of talking "on record" of how they feel they fit in with Spiceworks (or any other community.) There's an awful lot of hatred for anyone that does anything remotely close to marketing, and everyone wants to keep their "secrets" of how they do things all close to the vest.

I'm terrible at lying, so I stick to "tell the truth." Make a business of honesty and you have a heck of a lot less to remember. It also comes out in my writing; I've no issue using myself or my company as examples for things where others would fear retaliation from a vendor or theft of trade secrets. If you remove my ability to find work in an area, I'll go find work in another.

If that's a problem, it leaves me curious...and perhaps a bit sad. Unfortunately, however, not surprised. "Honesty" is something with decreasing value these days. :(

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: Meanwhile...

The thought had occurred. I think, however, this is largely because Microsoft simply doesn't see technical folks as all that relevant anymore. For whatever reason, Microsoft doesn't feel they have to influence coalface admins or even CIOs. It's all about the consumer, or the CEO. Nothing in between.

I have to admit to a great deal of curiosity about who's right in that gamble. Microsoft seem very desperately ti want to be the new Oracle.

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Trevor_Pott
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@Titus Technophobe

I have a choice every time I write an article: spend the whole article explaining every acronym, every service, every product as though my readers were dumb, deaf and blind...or presume a reasonable amount of industry knowledge on their part and move forward. No matter which of those two I choose, someone is going to get their panties in a bunch in the comments.

I could try to find a happy medium, but that ends up just upsetting everyone.

Do I need to spell out RAID for you lot? MAID? RAIN? What about Cloud, does that still need to be "defined" in every single article? Do I need to keep writing Software as a Service (SaaS) or can I finally just write SaaS and presume that readers have more than 12 functional brain cells to rub together.

There came a point where we stopped having to explain to everyone that Facebook was a Social Network, or that Twitter is a micro-blogging site that allows communication like a crippled public IM at 140 characters per second. Sure, some dude who has recently crawled out from under a rock will demand that we explain what they are, but we're at the point that anyone who works in IT and doesn't know what they are should simply not be working in IT.

At some point, as a writer, you have to make that call. You have to presume that your audience will have heard of the service/acronym/standard/etc that you are discussing. If you don't, your entire article devolves into explaining everything and you manage to convery absolutely nothing.

Spiceworks is big enough within our industry that I feel entirely confident saying "it's time to treat it like one of those services everyone in our industry does - or at least should - know about." It was a conscious choice. If you want to call that "an advertisement" you are free to do so. You'd be wrong, but you're free to be wrong.

At the end of the day I am making an assumption about Register readers: that you have access to - and know how to use - search engines. If you've missed something like "Spiceworks becoming a hugely popular service you should know about by now within the IT industry" then I make that assumption that you have the wherewithal to look up the backstory you obviously missed over the past several years.

So when someone says to me "I am unable to figure out what Software Defined Networking is" or "what is Spiceworks" understand that to me such individuals appear to be proclaiming publicly "I have not been paying attention to critical developments in my profession for at least four years and am completely incapable of rectifying this using a search engine. I demand that technology writers continue explaining every little detail for at least a decade after the product/service/company/standard/acronym/etc became mainstream industry knowledge."

You lot seem perfectly happy to demand that I give up on GUIs - despite my being a non-linguistic learner - because CLI/scripts/PoweShell are how "real admins" do things. Anything else is kid's stuff and GUI babies deserve nothing but contempt.

But lo! Attempt as a journalist to treat my audience as though they posses clue and might make it part of their professional advancement to keep abreast of key developments in their industry that are years old and I'm advertising, or being too hard on the poor little muffins who never heard of product/service/company/acronym before.

You lot are going to turn me into one of those jaded journos who no longer reads the comments because I'm utterly convinced there are no signs of intelligent life to be found there.

That's before we get into the bit where one half of the commentards demand that you do nothing but praise the brand to which they've attached their personal sense of self worth and the other half demand you never say a nice thing about anything ever...

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: This article reads like an ad.

Spiceworks is a Network Management and Help Desk application. That's a very minor part of the value prop, however, despite what some of the closet-dwelling introverts around here will tell you.

The software is a hook to get you sucked into the community. The community is a social network, full stop. The application itself is evolving away from being "just an app" and towards becoming a "platform" into which vendors and dedicated coders form the community can add modules, etc.

The goal, however, is to build the community in order to buff the social network which is where the revenue comes from. Frankly, they've done a good job of that part. It isn't shocking at all to find that part of the business model pooh-poohed on The Register; of all the tech communities in the world, El Reg has one of the most openly hostile to Social Networking in any form.

Make of it what you will; it's either A) A Network Management app with some annoying stuff you have to put up with in order to get Free Stuff, B) A Social Network with some applicaiton software as a hook, C) Both or D) GET OFF MY GODDAMNED LAWN.

You decide.

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Nvidia CEO: Android 'the most disruptive operating system in decades'

Trevor_Pott
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Re: OS?

Mir sucks decomposed goat balls.

Ubuntu can't make an interface to save their wretched little souls. Not that they care. Ubuntu is at this point nothing more than a vanity project for a madman so utterly out of touch with what actual users want he makes Microsoft seem sane.

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Trevor_Pott
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Who would have thunk that 4 years ago?

Oh, oh, I know, I know!

Me.

If you treat your customers like serfs and gain a sense of entitlement that you are owed X thousand dollars per endpoint shipped then don't be shocked and shaken when your market share drops. When you are a douche to the masses the masses say "up thataway" and buy somewhere else.

But holy fnord that crap you take in the comments section of a tech publication for speaking that truth to the entrenched power of brand tribalist fanboys.

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Foxconn-rebrander Apple to rebrand hardware from other Taiwanese firms, too

Trevor_Pott
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El Reg has removed comments that personally attacked writers. Grousing about the publication, choice of titles or other such things is a longstanding El Reg tradition. Just look at the (mostly successful) campaign to ban mobe.

There is a difference between ad homs against writers and "come on El Reg the Foxconn rebrander thing is getting old*".

That said, there's a crazy amount of brand tribalism amongst the readership. "OMG you attacked $brand_I've_associated_my_self_wroth_with, DIE HEATHEN" is just as overplayed as any linkbait. Would you suggest that The Register is pro-Microsoft? Pro-Apple? Pro-Samsung? Pro-Google? Pro-anyone?

It's not. It's also not anti-anyone. Individual writers may have certain chips on their shoulders, but the publication as a whole does not. Consider the dichotomy between Andrew O and myself, as one example. I disagree with virtually everything that man has ever written. He certainly disagrees with me. That's perfectly fine, we stay out of eachother's way and on we go.

Tim Anderson loves Windows 8. I assuredly don't (Win 7 uber alles) while Drew - and many, many others - use Macs. Chris Mellor tears into Tintri and buffs Pernix. I love Tintri but have deep reservations about Pernix (ones that go far beyond my affiliation with a competitor.)

So perhaps what irritates you is that The Register represents a diversity of opinion. It isn't obviously one thing or another. It doesn't pick sides...or if one writer does, another is perfectly free to come along and disagree as loudly as they so desire.

What isn't cool - and what isn't remotely allowed - is attacking a writer. If you want to come into the comments of an article and say "I disagree strongly, and here's why:" you'll be left alone. That sort of reasoned debate is strongly encouraged.

Coming into the comments with things like "Trevor Pott, you are a giant douchebag who knows nothing about anything and I think you kill yourself for the good of humanity" will get your comment pulled. If it happens too many times, you'll get banned.

To make things even more frustrating for those who simply want to convert all and sundry to their tribe's viewpoint, comments are adjudicated by human beings. These people - good people all, I assure you - may well pull a marginal comment when they are having a terrible day that wouldn't receive the same treatment during a happy day.

That leads to some inconsistency, but that's life. This is a world where human beings have to interact with other human beings and we - each and every one of us - bear a joint responsibility for learning to play nicely with others. (Not that any of us succeed at this all the time.)

It might seem callous and cold to say "if you don't like it go elsewhere", however, If you don't like it I strongly encourage you to go elsewhere. Publications need readers, but the truth of the matter is some people are way - way - more trouble then the two fleshy orbs at the top of their meat popsicles are worth.

If you desire, demand and expect the right to abuse, chastise, berate, belittle or demean the writers of this publication personally then quite frankly we are better off without you. Any publication - and frankly any business in any sector - is better without people such as that as customers. (Or as "product", if that is what you choose to view yourself as.)

If you don't like something about how The Registerdoes headlines, in-jokes, pith or articles, by all means speak your piece and take a stand. Do it in a reasonable and mostly professional way and I think you'll find that feedback incorporated into robust internal debates on the topic.

The Register can't be all things to all people. It will have a style that will be loved by many, hated by many. This is true of every business, every brand, every person on earth. What makes The Register different for so many others is that we actually do listen.

Me, personally, I far prefer a publication known for taking the piss out of things than republishing bland press releases. The day I become an "on message" sycophant like Ed Bott is the day I retire from writing forever.

So if you have a complaint, talk to us about it. Give rationale and use logic and evidence to back up your points. Open a professional dialogue and participate in a back and forth. Anything else will get filed under "haters gotta hate" and we'll get on with the business of doing business.

I hope that clears at least a few things up. Cheers, and have a great day.

*For the record, in my humble opinion, not only is the Foxconn rebrander thing a little tired, but I'm highly critical of this whole "peak Apple" nonsense. Peak Apple my chrome-plated ASCII.

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Dodgy Kaspersky update borks THOUSANDS of NHS computers

Trevor_Pott
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Re: What happened...

Expecting your vendor to do testing for you is socialism. It's nothing more than entitled sysadmins looking for a hand out. This is something everyone should be doing for themselves. If you want to have someone else do testing then you pay them for it. Specifically. Independently of the definitions.

I can't believe all the crazy socialists around here. This planet sure is going to hell.

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IBM makes cheeky SNATCH at AWS's cloud crown

Trevor_Pott
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Re: Gartner? Really?

You're hilarious. IT was hacked and cracked ages ago. Just look at all the cattle using Windows 8. It's all about whose influence you buy. Few think for themselves anymore, or beyond their immediate desires to see what business practices they are enabling and encouraging with their purchases.

The corrupt leading the blind enabling the greedy who manage the stupid. The meritocracy is long dead.

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Enabling the on-demand data centre with SDN

Trevor_Pott
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Re: What Network Virtualization is?

Abstraction layers provide easy of use at the cost of efficiency. When the cost of what's lost to inefficiency of the abstraction layers drops below the cost labour cost required to run things without the abstraction layers then the abstraction layers see widespread adoption.

That's business 101-class stuff...

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: my comments

I feel the need to debate you somewhat here Nate.

Point for your argument: 95% of my deployments don't even use VLANs, let alone anything more complicated. (Though Trunking and 802.3ad/LACP see widespread use.)

Point against your argument: if the "advanced features" were easier to use, at least half those same clients would be on them like white on rice.

The issue - at least at the SMB end of things - isn't that SDN-like features wouldn't make lives easier, reduce OpEx costs and so forth...it's that these companies don't have "network administrators." CCIE cost muchos dineros. Even if you have the money, you have to deal with the egos...and most SMB owners I know of just don't have time for the sorts of Prima Donnas that CCXX seems to attract.

But the do use virtualisation. They are leaping headfirst into storage virtualisation. They'd dearly love to have all the promised functionality of SDN, but with a nice UI and none of those nasty attendant network admins.

Some network vendors claim they have a solution that can meet these needs. Some go on about vendors but refuse point blank to discuss ease of use with me.

Nobody talks cost, not in hard numbers, not ever.

So to an extent you're right: what's on the table today just flat out doesn't apply to a lot of companies. Where you're wrong is that this isn't because the features aren't in demand...it's that those features have to bring simplicity with them in the form of ease of use and the ability to jettison the network admin from the payroll.

That day will come. 5 years, 10....15? Who knows! But virtualisation did away with a lot of dedicated application and hardware cluster admins. It made backups and disaster recovery easier and collapsed those specialties into generic admins in all but the largest organisations. I am seeing the same thing happening to Storage today; Tintri goes in and a storage admin goes out. (Hell, Nutanix goes in and they start culling storage and virtualisation admins, but that's another story for another day...)

Somewhere in the past 10 years vendors of all sizes and in all areas of IT forgot about ease of use. Ease of use isn't sexy. Everyone at every size scripts, right? Everyone can remember every single powershell command for every single application they use, right? Everyone knows ios by heart, right?

What do you mean, you can't afford 15 dedicated admins for each area? What kind of Mickey Mouse company are you?!?

It's interesting to see you pooh-poohing SDN because the fabric portion of the exercise is inherently a layer 2 activity. As far as I'm concerned that's a good thing. Routing is inherently north-south. It's a bottleneck and SMBs like me and mine sure as hell can't afford routers that fling around multiple 10 gigabit links. We can't keep going up the aggregation stack to the top in order to go out to the edge.

I don't even understand why I should ever have to worry about that stuff. Why the hell can't I just connect switch A up to switch B and have the things figure out how to make the bandwidth work? I care about the workloads that run on top of the network, not getting into the thing and writing a script to make it go.

Routing should be something that connects the heavy lifting to the users. I shouldn't need expensive bottlenecks to connect one big-ass high bandwidth device to another so they can play nicely. I shouldn't need expensive equipment or CCwhatevers just to make the damned switches work.

This is where SDN comes in, even in the smallest of businesses. Someone please explain to me why home routers, wifi devices and switches are even capable of layer-2 broadcast loops? We've had spanning tree (and alternatives) for well over a decade, but grandma still has to worry about how many cables are plugged where?

Accounting still can't just plug another cable between switch A and switch B and they'll "just go faster"? Why is this shit still an issue?

Greed.

Auto MDIx was something we could all agree on, and I haven't needed a crossover cable in at least 6 years. Innovation seems to have stopped there. Protectionism and douchbaggery have completely stalled any advancement in networking and they hold everything else back.

Openflow – or more specifically OpenDaylight – looks like it is going to be the only way out of the morass of asshattedness we find ourselves in on this.

Who wants SDN? In my experience damned near everyone. What they don't want is the protectionist charlatanery that seems wrapped up in most attempts to sell it to the hoi polloi.

Anyways, that's my $0.02. Also: listen to Drew. More sysadmin bloggers are a good thing. The world needs more than my voice (gods know that's true!) and you're a bright chap. Join in and share your wisdom with the crowds. We have cookies.

P.S. One of us. One of us. One of us…

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Microsoft CEO shortlist claim: It's just Elop, Bates, Mulally, Nadella and...

Trevor_Pott
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Re: 2 ceo's needed

Please. Spend an hour in the same room as Nadella. Presence is not his problem.

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: 2 ceo's needed

CEOs need vision. COOs need to kick ass.

Jobs + Cook.

Even if you found your unicorn CEO with all the magical qualities you desire, trying to run a corporation as big as Microsoft he'd burn out like a dry candle trying to do it all himself. That's the point of having a qualified team of executives that can work well together.

Nadella needs to run the thing. He's the only one who could actually craft a vision that would create a Microsoft end users and businesses alike would want to buy from. Elop would be a great COO, knocking heads together and organizing sales forces.

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Trevor_Pott
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I can't disagree more. Nadella is the best choice. He doesn't need superpowers to fold in Nokia, just good VPs. He has always been a man who knows his limitations and who casts about for additional brains to overcome those limitations. Nadella would make a Microsoct that's responsive to it's customers. Not one that blackmails, threatens and dismisses them. He's not just what Microsoft needs...he's what the industry as a whole needs.

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Canadian Vultures shave bare for winter

Trevor_Pott
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Unhappy

Re: @Prairie Harpy

:(

All of the sads. You are giving them to me.

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Trevor_Pott
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I have several, however, I do have six copies of that exact same shirt. (Pushed wrong button when e-ordering.) So I wear one of them almost all the time.

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: @TrevorP

Molson Canadian?!?

Egads, man, I'm Albertan Vitamin P, naturally!

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Cisco rolls dice with 'CONTROL EVERYTHING' softy networking launch

Trevor_Pott
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"Maybe we are doing hardware-defined networking... but if I can put that same box with better performance and better programmability in your data center, cheaper than a white box out of Taiwan, do you care?"

If the first hit is free, followed by "you pay, you pay, you pay" then you're goddamned right I care. If you consistently end up cheaper than Huawei, we'll talk. If you're just trying to get me on the crank so you can crank every bent copper from my wallet then fuck off you goddamned ecosystem leech.

Switching is a commodity now, Cisco.

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Australia hobbles self in tech tax chase

Trevor_Pott
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Re: I like Australians

You should revolt because your choice of governments are "incompetent, bigoted jackasses" and "bigoted, incompetent jackasses."

Unless, of course, you like bigotry and incompetence. In which case, embrace both of your options.

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It's all in the fabric for the data centre network

Trevor_Pott
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Re: Are we approaching the problem from the wrong angle?

Whose extended bus technology? QPI? Hypertransport? Infiniband? Something even more proprietary? Who owns the patents? Who makes the money? Who makes the kit? What are the standards?

Ethernet is never the best option for anything. It is, however, something that everyone can play with. This is IT; the best technologies wither due to greed while mediocre technologies that were opened up for the entire world to innovate upon flourish.

If you don't believe me, do some research on USB...

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: SDN

As a general rule SDN is easier to manage than traditional networking. SDN interfaces are often modern, up-to-date GUI affairs that can be addressed via the command line or scripts, but also take into account the rest of the human race that are visual learners and/or only go modify the network a few times a year.

That doesn't cover all implementations, naturally, but in general SDN has been used as a chance to break free from the ios tyranny and open switching administration to those who excel at things other than rote memorization.

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: SDN

"The Internet" is low bandwidth, high latency. Datacenters are high bandwidth, low latency.

A fabric allows me to talk horizontally across a datacenter without bandwidth contention. Explain to me exactly how I accomplish that in a routed scenario without bottlenecking on the router. Or for that matter, how your very Cisco view of networking is going to be cheaper than a mesh fabric with dynamic layer-2 packet routing?

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I survived Spiceworld 2013, heat and all: Here's how I did it

Trevor_Pott
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Re: tl;dr

How clever! I'd never heard that one before!

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Tech today: Popular kids, geeks, bitchfests... Welcome back to HIGH SCHOOL, nerds

Trevor_Pott
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You can lead people to water, but you can't make them think.

I think you just described Windows 8 users...

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Trevor_Pott
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Mushroom

Nooooooooooooooo!

*dunce hat*

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Microsoft buys all electricity from Texas wind farm

Trevor_Pott
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Re: Typical Microsoft

Apple's aim is negative carbon across the whole company. And plenty of storage vendors offer 100% uptime.

Again, you assume I am talking about datacenters there. Very "Microsoft today." Take your Azure and stuff it into your NSA-monitored by-the-minute-billed overpriced sack of shit, Redmondian.

I'll run my own stuff. Increasingly, however, that can't include Microsoft. Not stable enough and certainly not enough bang for the buck. Just Not Getting It. As ususal.

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Trevor_Pott
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Re: Typical Microsoft

"Been low carbon for years" is not the same as "no carbon". That's like saying "Microsoft has made high uptime block storage servers for years." High uptime != 100% uptime, which is a hell of a difference to the company that's suffering an outage.

Actually, you make a good point, however, that describes Microsoft's views on the matter...and neatly ram home exactly how they Don't Get It in most things.

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Microsoft CEO shortlist down to EIGHT ... appropriately enough, perhaps

Trevor_Pott
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If it isn't Nadella, it is a slap in the face of their entire customer base. He's the only candidate who will deliver what people want to buy, not what Microsoft feels it can blackmail people into giving up more than they can afford for.

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Playtime's over: Next NSA boss may be torn away from US cyber-war effort

Trevor_Pott
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Re: More moving the deckchairs

Lying to congress isn't a crime. Lying to a court under oath is.

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Trevor_Pott
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"...governments should do what it says on the box; govern!"

The real power in America - the Tea Party - disagrees.

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Lavabit bloke passes hat for open-source secure email master plan

Trevor_Pott
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You mean the American company that wants us to store "secure" data on their American cloud?

A-hahahahahahahaha.

Sell me the software to run on my own servers, away from American hands. Then we'll talk. "American" and "secure" are oxymorons.

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RIIIGHT. Sysadmins: Have you ever even MET an overly suave IT guy?

Trevor_Pott
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Suave sysadmins don't stay sysadmins for long. They get a job that pays real money and doesn't come with life-altering stress, lack of appreciation and Microsoft's licensing department.

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Yellow-bellied journo dons black tie, sees flip side of VMWorld

Trevor_Pott
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Re: vExpert?

For all that VMware has it's rough spots, it's still damned amazing software.

....that and Hyper-V keeps randomly rebooting on me and blowing up at critical times...

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FIERY DEATH awaits all who stroke mobes mid-flight? Nope, says FAA

Trevor_Pott
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GPS *receives and processes* signals that are broadcast *by satellites*. A GPS emits no radio. It just crunches data on a time code.

How the metric fucking banana hell do you manage to turn passive crunching of omni-present signal data into a plea for pro-authoritarianism?

Christ on a bike, you lot are truly mad...

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Revealed: Stealthy hybrid upstart Maxta's vSAN domination plan

Trevor_Pott
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Re: I'll wait...

Actually, I use the same Supermicro kit that Nutanix does, along with Supermicro's excellent 10Gbit switches. I make a damned fine cloud, if'n I do say so myself.

Problem is, Nutanix won't sell me software. They want to sell me the stack and that's bloody expensive. More capital than I have to hand. That makes Maxta interesting.

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Deploying Turing to see if we have free will

Trevor_Pott
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@t.est

Oik! I gots me two heads!*

*I can only use one at a time.

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