1489 posts • joined Sunday 19th December 2010 15:08 GMT
Intrusions and such are way beyond OS capabilities these days; every modern OS (yes, this includes Windows) has plenty of means to keep your environment secure.
It would be interesting to know what the majority of involved developers use for the home OS; my bets are on Linux though. So does this mean that Linux has finally become "insecure" because it finally attracted too much "unwanted attention" ? I don't think so; it merely goes to show us that any OS can be setup in an insecure fashion.
The first requirement to setup a secure environment is to understand the OS fundamentals which you're using, the second is to apply the right security measures and stick to them.
Topping GroupLayout (Matisse) ?
Now, small disclaimer: I'm not a full time Java developer. I picked up on Java years ago ever since I started Solaris administration because it fascinated me how deep Java was "embedded" within Solaris. It didn't take me long to pick up on NetBeans, at a later time extended with VP's SDE-NB for my UML modelling needs (I actually enjoy working with UMLs) and that's basically where I am now; in the mean time I've developed several Java applications, some simple and some quite complex. Mostly aimed at server administration, but also some client/server related programs.
Alas; while I don't keep up with every detail I still remember when NetBeans' 'Project Matisse' was announced and demonstrated. That was IMO very heavy; an extension to Swing which actually allowed rapid and easily created GUI's in a way which was extremely user friendly. The main 'problem' here was that Java didn't support this new layout manager ("GroupLayout") out of the box. As such it was first shipped as a library with NetBeans and later (iirc around SE 6_10) embedded with Java.
I think that development is extremely had to top. Or what to think about the inclusion of the NetBeans platform in the form of the jVisualVM application; a program which allows you to monitor all running Java applications quickly and easily (checkup on cpu usage, heap size, threads, classes, etc.) ?
All without turning the JDK into a form of bloat (at least IMO).
SO sorry for being a bit cynical here but seeing it believing. Sun has done some pretty cool things with Java in the past, and that is a legacy which is IMO very hard to top.
I don't think anyone is looking forward to go back to the DOS era, even though it knew no virusses.
Its impossible to prevent virusses on the OS level these days. At the very least a trojan horse can wreck havoc on your own data.
As others have said its not technically easy.
Now many may wonder "But what organization would demand the impossible?". One funded by the Dutch government and as such one which /needs/ some "victories" every now and then to ensure their next annual payroll. Even if their victory is totally bogus; just look at Piratebay. Man, they were all muscles then, they'd "get piratebay" and at the end it has cost the taxpayers millions of Euro's and Piratebay are still going strong.
Brein is the kind of organization which would prefer if all internet connections were monitored and screened in order to be sure that no illegal content would pass along. The kind of organization which would have no problems with putting the blame onto ISP's, preferably shutting them down entirely (after all; one point for the "good guys", and all those potential criminals who were using their service have now been stopped!).
Its the kind of organization I'd immediately associate with the Stasi in former East Germany, knowing /very/ well what I'm saying here. People talk way too lightly about the Stasi now as if it were a 'mere' agency like MI6, the CIA or FBI. WRONG. But having said that; that is my opinion on BREIN.
They don't care about privacy, freedom of speech, Internet freedom or justice. All they care for is to make sure that the Dutch government keeps them on the payroll (or, in Dutch, they want to ensure their "subsidie").
SO yes; I believe this firm that BREIN tries to destroy Usenet. BUT... Lets also not forget the other aspect; you don't need a 24 lines usenet connection merely to follow Usenet conversations, which is exactly what commercial Usenet providers are offering. So they are not fully free of blame either.
But in this case the remedy is much worse than the "disease".
The bigger they are...
Its ironic actually..
Its /the/ big problem for software companies. Some people want change or even thrive on it while others simply want to have an ongoing experience. However, in order to make money you need to do something since you can't sell the same product over and over again (sorta). You need to apply some changes and improvements. Stuff people would want to buy.
So here came the open source movement; doing things right. And in the beginning that was just what was happening. Several window and desktop managers which all had their own specific look and feel and maintained those while slowly (but steadily!) working towards a more mature interface.
The problem I see is that some projects became so big that they actually think to be calling the shots. While in fact they're not; their users are. That is; the users who are in it for the product experience and not because its "cool" to use that certain product.
Gnome suffered from this, KDE suffered from this and there are several other examples too. Windows? At least they try to remain backwards compatible. I can easily make my Win7 look like Win98 yet only with a 'double sized' menu. Still, still a small change considering the life span of 13 years.
More and more people complain about drastic change without any means to go back to what they want. Think FireFox, think Thunderbird's mail tabs, etc, etc. There is a growing part of the market which doesn't /want/ big changes in short periods of time.
And what does Microsoft do? They're about to enforce Metro onto their users, where the desktop users will most likely suffer dearly wrt the system being user friendly.
Why do I get the feeling that Apple is going to end up being the company with the last laugh here?
And people said..
...that Microsoft didn't like Open Source Software. I think they love it.
Pretty sad too.
Why can't we just get along ?
Maybe my response is too simplistic, I dunno, but so far all I see from US companies is "sue here", "sue there", "protest against $model here", "try to get $model banned there".
And all under "perfect" US law and patent rulings of course. Oh MY, the competition managed to come up with a product which looks like ours BUT their activation button sits around12mm too close to fall outside of our patent. That can't be; you're violating our rights; WE'LL SUE!
Why can't you knuckleheads let the public decide what they like best and instead of trying to take it out on the competition reflect on your (possible) customers choices and let it reflect back onto you? Gee, maybe the customers doesn't WANT to use your stuff because of reasons you never bothered paying attention to.
And instead of listening and learning we'll just cry like the baby we are (note: this is /not/ solely aimed at Google here) and as a true US company we'll SUE. No, we're not going to reflect on what we've learned and try to make our products or services better; what idiot would care about that stuff? No, we'll sue!
Wake up call you idiots: your customers apparently care about your services and products. And if you'd try to adjust your stuff to what the public wants you might actually gain more money than by trying to legally swindle your competition out of the market.
Its not a bug!
Its a feature!
I guess there are more people out there who dislike Oracle and its products.
This is all assuming that those kids spoke the truth. I know times have changed but in my days I felt pretty comfortable talking about pr0n and such with my friends, but some grown up stranger? Gimme a break; that's the kind of stuff my parents warned me about!
You are right but also overlooking the obvious. The task to divide memory should be left at the underlying OS, not with a single application. All memory which FF gobbles up cannot be fairly distributed between other parts of the system, and might even cause nasty side effects.
Memory should be used, but the OS should be the ones calling the shots. Applications should only use what they need and leave it at that.
Caching? Can be done in a multiple of ways. And here too goes my statement above; if you manage to leave it up to the OS then maybe even 3rd party programs can have some mutual benefit from it.
I think one of the main reasons is that Bill Gates lived the "technical era" whereas Ballmer has always been focused with the business side of the company. At least that's how I picked it up.
And yes; even though he lived it I too think that Gates wasn't the brilliant minded guy as many proclaim him to be, which has been proven several times when employees or friends looked at some of his work (the famous VB program for example) and basically burned it down the ground without knowing that it was Gates' doing.
But despite all that you cannot deny the fact that he has lived and experienced it. Starting out with hardly anything but a couple of good ideas and knowing how to present these.
And I think that has helped a lot, but is also something Ballmer seems to lack. I dunno, but I somehow doubt that Metro would have been released under the dictatorship, errrr, leadership of Gates.
Just my 2 cents though
I'm more and more tempted towards the opinion that on Windows an intrusion is more easier noticeable than it is on Linux.
On Windows crapware (malware, adware, etc.) is often discovered when the user finally wonders why his machine has become so slow and sluggish. Whereas on Linux an average rootkit does quite a good job of hiding itself. Most often you don't notice one thing unless you're using executable signing and such.
I can't help wonder how many rooted boxes exist without the owner even knowing...
Oracle really means business!
Its good to see all the "positive" effects which the Oracle take over has on all the products formerly being managed by Sun. Things really start to look up now; very impressive achievements indeed.
(yes this is a troll, I can't stand Oracle).
The new MS strategy ?
I'm almost tempted to think that MS knows how well their new Win8 is going to be received by the major public (the desktop users); which I don't think is going to be all that positive.
What was the first thing /many/ people did when they got themselves a Vista PC? Either re-installing XP on it themselves, getting one with allowed them to install XP or (as I have experienced a few times): calling a friend to help 'm out getting XP back onto it.
One has to wonder... Maybe this is MS answer to all that; simply trying to disallow people to pull something like that off so that they have no choice but to stick to one of their more modern OS's ?
You're so right...
What's also interesting is to theorize the cause of all this. And my stance on that is "people are lazy", directly linked with "software dictates the hardware".
In the old days (Commodore 64) you had a whooping 64kbytes of memory. Yes ladies and gentlemen; a tenth of a megabyte (what's that you ask? Well, most part which goes onto a 3.5" floppy disk. "????"... ok, never mind ;-))
Seriously; C64 provided limitations. And we worked around those limitations to squeeze whatever we could out of the critter. And man did it kick ass !
But nowadays? People rely on higher level programming languages and take those to the max. But often ignoring the overhead caused from such languages (and yes; C comes close enough to break even).
But despite that most people that I know who are into programming hardly create their own library collections anymore; they see a problem, check the Internet if an existing solution is available and some of them will actually look into said solution where a lot simply copy and use said solution.
Even if said solution would only take you a couple of lines of code. Heck; even if said solution could easily be optimized by adding 2 lines of code. But in most cases people don't even wish to bother.
And I think that is one of the main causes as to why a lot of people can no longer achieve "easy stuff" on hardware which way outpowers that what was once considered to be making said stuff easy in the first place.
@Peter2: Sure, same here. Unfortunately the majority does otherwise, and ironically enough those are the people who MS will have in mind when they claim that this boot mechanism will still give you "full control".
Its one big scam, they're merely twisting words.
Missing the point here?
THAT is /exactly/ why I say "be careful wrt what is being said".
Yes; booting one OS to boot another; think about this before posting or voting please.
You pick up a new PC; /WHAT/ OS is pre-installed by default ?
SO when they say "you have full control" do you really? From their point of view you do (see my comment above) but in reality...
As such my comment: be careful (or mindful) about what is being said. /technically/ they are right, but in the end it doesn't change sh*t for us.
"(Don't bother about hijacked php services, though)"
Why not? With the quite large amounts of local root explains in the open ?
Seriously though, I am indeed tempted with the opinion that in most cases people sooner recognize a hacked Windows box than a rooted Linux server. THAT is not something I can back up with facts but one has to wonder...
(yes; this may seem like a troll, its not. If you don't believe me then check my previous posts)
...one has to wonder that a compromise at the very heart of Linux (kernel.org) took 17 /days/ before being noticed. And these are the people who developed, created and (so one may assume) know Linux by heart.
How would a regular sysadmin fare ?
You do realize that when it comes to actually having to rely on the raid there is already a huge problem?
So, ok; replacing the HD. I don't know about you but I don't use the mdadmin command on a daily basis and as such would need time to check up on the syntax. Easily done through the manpage, but still time consuming. And yes; you can prepare for this up front and write everything down or script it, but all of that effort is basically adding up to my previous comment.
In my environment I replace the HD with a new one, boot the system and right click on the volume to add a new mirror. Done.
In Linux it doesn't quite work this way since I'd first need to setup a partition of equal size or larger. At least twice; one for my root and one for my swap. After doing that its time to attach the stuff and let it continue. The end result is still the same; it would take me more time.
But you're right, this is but one example.
Be careful now...
Maybe I'm over analyzing but technically speaking its true what they say. Solely focusing on Linux now; Grub or Lilo can be made to boot from a partition instead of the MBR. The Windows boot manager is capable of activating such a partition.
As such it would always be possible to boot / use Linux while secure boot is in effect and give the owner "complete control".
So be very careful about what is being said here... Because although what they claim maybe true, it doesn't take the initial problem away. IMO that is.
Yes, I know that detail but...
In such events I always come to ask myself: are they really doing nothing here, or do they want to keep up that appearance ?
Because the last thing you want is to alert the bad guys that something big is coming, that by itself could make catching them a whole lot more difficult.
You do realize...
That there are also thousands and more overrun ("rooted") *nix boxes out there, being used daily for whatever purpose the intruder has ?
Ranging from "innocent" stuff like your daily spam to more devious plots.
This "credit" is not something solely applicable to Windows alone.
I think this deserves some respect...
First I think we should never forget that MS is in the end a company which means that their own interests prevail over that of others (recently dumping their Gold partner for example; no disrespect intended but lets not forget that by doing so MS also thwarted possible threats to their own reputation and credibility).
Still, having said that I also think that they're doing a recommendable job here. Not only did MS try to keep their OS environment safe, they also /actively/ started hunting down the cause of the threat and took it down. And you can't ignore the fact that it probably have cost them quite a few bucks and resources to do so.
So I say congratulations and kudo's to you!
Keep an open mind, always...
That what this is mostly all about. Its fine to be passionate about a product or a certain development but never forget that there are other solutions out there and those solutions may very well perform just as well as yours.
Most of all try not to lose perspective of the situation and /always/ respect anothers opinion.
Too many discussions are based on assumptions and guesses where people can have a very outspoken opinion (often based on true facts though) yet these assumptions don't always apply...
A simple example which I've discussed with many of my friends in past months: Costs of Open source vs. those of closed source. In my particular case me picking up Windows 2k3 for my 2 office servers vs. picking up, say, Ubuntu server LTS instead. After all; now I had to cough up (I paid a few hundred dollars) while I could have installed a Linux server OS for free.
My argument against that is that Linux would indeed have been free to pick up. But the hours which I had to invest in setting the whole thing up are not. Nor is the time I had to spent on maintenance. Example: Setup a software raid1 for the system partition(s) while also making sure that it can boot from both mirrors should one disk suddenly fail.
On Windows this takes me a few mouseclicks (make disk dynamic while making sure I have some unpartitioned space left on the other, next right click on the partition with the data (now called a volume) and select "add mirror"). The beauty here is that it even sets up the boot manager for me so that it resides on both disks.
On Linux this is a bit harder. It is advised to always layout a filesystem on the new raid. A bit rough if you want to keep your data. So what I used to do was to setup a virtual device (md0) using only the new partition (so create the new device with one partition, then layout the filesystem and after that actually copy the current data to the virtual device. Then (if possible) unmount your current mountpoint and replace it with the virtual device. After that simply attach your original partition to your raid1 (optionally formatting it first)). Needless to say but this takes much more time since you're basically copying your data twice. And that's not even touching the subject of having to reconfigure Grub so that it will reside on the mbr of both harddisks.
Now: in all honesty my knowledge is dated. Back in the time the easiest way to setup a boot manager was Lilo since it natively supported raid (so could install itself with one command in both MBRs).
Dated or not the time factor is something you can't deny here. I know this is 'merely' about installing ("how many times do you install an os?"), its also merely an example. Another argument of mine is support duration.
Some people don't like this opinion one bit. "You're basically selling out" (wtf?). While forgetting that I can be just as argumentative when it comes to using a Windows server as an internet server. I wouldn't do that either....
Morale of the story ?
I'm repeating myself (used this same topic in another alike thread) but still I think you can't stress this out enough:
Never, EVER, make (semi-) important decisions over the phone. Company calls you to provide you a better deal for your energy, (cell)phone, internet, etc. ? Never say yes; instead ask them to send you the offer in writing (heck; even an e-mail will do; how hard is that?) and only then decide for yourself if this deal really is as good as being claimed.
Same applies to this stuff. Never EVER give others who you don't trust access to your computer "because". Same issue applies here: ask them to send you the information in writing so that you can check for yourself if this is something you should be doing.
Most of all with computer issues like these: Ask a friend who knows about computers FIRST !
I know most of you will now go "Yawn, dude... we KNOW all this....".
Sure, but do your friends and family also know? Do your neighbors know? Does that friendly old chap down the street (or 2 floors below) who's walking his dog know ?
Those are the guys to look out for, those are the guys where you should bring up subjects like this (if applicable and when possible of course) and warn them about such issues.
Yes it will
Because most people don't care. At all.
Your average (common?) PC buyer buys a PC and is even happy (relieved?) that it comes with an OS pre-installed because otherwise he or she wouldn't have the foggiest idea what to do. And those will be the same kind of people who may even support this movement because well (marketing crap here:) "It keeps my computer safe from booting unwanted or corrupted software such as virusses!".
I see a parallel here, though very vague... The European vote on encryption; the issue which would make it illegal for an household to own an encryption method /without/ handing a copy of the secret key to the government. Of course all in order to prevent "terrorism".
"It will never happen" people said, also because "We would lose our freedom". In the end hardly any political party cared (the attendance of said vote was very low) and it was IIRC Finland who eventually blocked the whole thing all together. Barely. It didn't even make it to the news.
While this thing may seem huge to us don't lose perspective; your average PC buyer or owner will probably have a hard time understanding what this fuss is all about.
This tells us more about the US courts than MS...
Now, not living in the US I maybe basing this on false assumptions (if so I'd appreciate feedback!) but I think everyone is barking up the wrong tree here. Its not the evil MS but the evil justice system which makes all this idiocy possible.
People always forget that companies seek money. But its the US which makes that (IMVHO:) retarded patent system possible so its only logical that companies use it to try and generate an income from it. Maybe not morally ethical, but for companies only the financial aspect is important.
Now the only thing people are upset is because in this case it involves Linux. When it comes to other (far more) unfair patent deals it may not even get any of your attention apart from those who also follow the financial sections of the newspaper.
Still; if you want to blame someone then put the blame where it belongs: the US patent system.
Only that way you might actually be able to change something here.
He should keep his mouth shut
Sorry for the harsh words but I think stuff like this is plain out annoying.
Its simple really: if those guys hasn't sold out MySQL to Sun for the big bucks then they could still do with MySQL what they wanted.
They chose the big bucks so the MySQL users now really do NOT need your pityfull self sorried whining since you guys are the ones who got us into this mess in the first place.
A bit slightly besides the topic but would I be an invited journalist to follow some kind of presentation yet being forced to sign some stupid "no disclosure" contract then I'd simply ignore the whole kaboodle and walk right out of there.
Of course making sure that I /would/ share my experiences and my personal opinion about them.
In other words: Why are people still paying attention to stuff like this ? IMO its best ignored; which is about the worst thing you can do to a company trying to make his new product better known.
Provided this story is true then I think its stupid. On one hand they try to make themselves look like they care (allow users to raise their voice on their forums, also sharing their own news and messages to which people can respond) but on the other hand stuff like this ? Looks very stupid.
Tits up? No "Kapot en over de kop!" :-)
Yes, that's Dutch up there but then again this was a Dutch company you know ;-)
Anyway, this shouldn't come as a surprise. Investigation results already leaked here and there and rumors have it that these guys didn't even run virus scanner on their desktop workstations and that the server software being used was outdated as well.
If that isn't simply asking for it then I don't know what is.
Apparently our government does know since they had full trust in these guys.
This is why I don't use a smartphone...
...no matter what brand or type or. I'm happy with my Samsung Jet.
I just want a phone which helps me to do "phoney" things ;-)
Yes, its very handy that I can also surf the Net, retrieve my e-mail, listen to mp3s, can use GPS, and even jot down memo's. But that's all I need.
At least I don't have to worry about malware and other crap finding its way onto my phone one way or the other; simply because its pretty much locked down. About the only extensions available are through Java ME and those Samsung plugin thingies (which name I forgot).
On your version of Windows no less.
XP Professional with IE8 only supports TLS 1.0 and SSL 2.0 and 3.0. Windows 7 with IE8 on the other hand supports TLS 1.0, 1.1 and 1.2 where, as others said before me, 1.0 is the default. The SSL support hasn't changed.
You can find this yourself by going to your control panel and pick internet options. Either directly or through some category layer. Or select this option from within IE.
Then check the 'Advanced' tab (last one). In the list somewhere you'll find the checkboxes where you can select what you want to enable.
I don't see the problem here..
Note: I'm now solely trying to approach this from a developer pov; /not/ that of an end user or sysadmin. Within the last contexts I think the whole Metro environment stinks.
Seriously; this news is not as bad as being portrayed IMO. First the fears that .NET might be replaced turned out to be fictional, as anyone thinking about it could have assumed (maybe even predicted). Instead of replacing .NET they added to the basic functionality and extended upon it with their HTML5 adoption in Metro. Now you can't only use .NET but HTML5 as well.
Second; wasn't this a little bit foreseeable? I mean; only last week did MS announce that they'd be dropping plugin support for their Metro styled browser. Which on its own would automatically imply to be an increase of risk. But if you set something like that up within an environment which is restricted on its own then the risk factor will significantly drop again as well.
Its no secret that MS has some massive catching up to do when it comes to OS security. They've come a long way, sure, but there is still a lot of work.
And the whole "contract approach" also seems to address another issue; with the current RPC model its not possible to apply access control (separation on a per-application basis). Yet with such a contract model I could imagine that a client would need to setup a contract session with a server after which the server will determine if the client gets access to the required services.
That could benefit their new server environment as well. So I don't see the problem here to be honest.
But how reliable are both parties?
I have some doubts as to the seriousness of the rivalry. What seems to be ignored here is that many enterprises also care for another major factor: reliability. Not just for the product itself, also the company behind it.
And I think this is where things can go wrong for Google; how well does it treat its business partners? Lets first focus on the obvious: Google partners with several companies to push their Android OS forward and suddenly, totally out of the blue, they're part of the competition themselves. MS have also pulled some stunts in the past (starting their own hardware line for example) but IMO that wasn't fully comparable.
And what about all those Google resellers who started complaining? Eventually what happened was that Google locked down the entire forum and people were basically shut up. Keep well in mind that this involved the market place; but the same kind of construction exists for application resellers; the people which might sell these Google solutions on the Enterprise in the first place.
Next; what's in it for the customers ?
Its hard to deny that MS has a massive advantage here; all their online services are already heavily tied into their Office suite. So should a company which is already using MS Office (not that unlikely) suddenly decide for one or the other the main advantage here is that MS' solutions would seemingly "blend in" without too much change or extra training required.
Finally, I think MS' biggest overall advantage is their accessibility and transparency, and the way they treat resellers in general.
A Google business partner only seems to exist on the Enterprise. You can become a "partner" of some sorts, but that seems to be more tied into becoming a reseller or market place user / seller. As a Google reseller, what do you sell? Google apps, Google maps or Google earth. And here you see Google working on semantics.. Because you can get yourself a label to show the world: "Authorized Enterprise reseller", "Premier Enterprise reseller", "Authorized SMB reseller", "Premier SMB reseller".
Whatever option you chose its going to be an investment for you. Read: it costs money! Also keep in mind that this isn't about semantics alone; A SMB reseller aims at companies with 250 employees or less. Naturally also has to pay less.
Microsoft otoh has its partner membership opened up for any kind of company. No matter if you're a big or a small company; if you're a partner you're a partner. And will even be mentioned as such on their forums; your company name besides your own name clearly mentioned to be a Partner. Without costs... (lets be realistic; running a company costs money too you know).
But most of all a partner is a partner. As soon as one wants to start selling MS licenses all he has to do is become a member of the MS Partner network (free of charge) and contact a distributor. None of that "premier reseller" crap. A partner can sell solutions to anyone he wants.
Well, who has the better options here ?
That is of course a personal opinion but mine is that MS' whole setup is much more appealing for business. Also because it can attract small and enterprise sized companies alike, and treats them as being equally important.
So quite frankly.. A serious rival? I'll believe it when I see it.
Google is a rival to MS, no question about it, but not on every market out there.
You're right, BUT...
Its not always that easy.
The bigger the project the harder it gets to fork it. Well, forking in itself is easy of course; you basically take the code, apply the required changes to make it yours and then you basically have your new product.
But then what ?
A big project means many people working on it and usually developers work on their own sections. As such its not unlikely (though heavily depending on the project) that you will encounter many different coding styles, many different ways things get solved and many cases where things may or may not been documented or commented.
Forking maybe easy, but reviving or maintaining such a project could become a totally different story all together.
As said in the topic; of course you're fully right that this is in essence a big advantage over closed source. But let's also not forget that often its not as easy as a simple "FORK!" and you're done. Sometimes its sheer impossible if you can't find enough people who are willing to help you out.
Windows 8 loses major functionality it seems...
Now, I know and realize all too well that Windows is targeted at end users. People who don't really care about all the technical stuff but merely want to use the OS in order to use their computer. Fine.
Yet the more examples they show us the more do I think that they're systematically decreasing functionality in order to make it all "look good" yet totally ignoring that there are also people who don't care about looks but more about functionality.
Plenty of examples so far; the BSOD being a bit extreme, but for a more common one take the new task manager for example...
The current one does it all; at first you get a mere overview of running programs (and their status) while also telling you amount of services, CPU load and memory. Very sparse but all the info you might need at a first glimpse. After that you have tabs for more details; processes, services, load (or something close enough) and so on. If you want to know even more then they added a (IMO) cool feature in Win7: on the "load" tab you have a button "resource control". Sometimes that can be really helpful to check specific loads (like, for example, listing all programs / services which access the network).
In Windows 8 all of that has been dumped together. You go to the task manager and you no longer get that simple straight forward list of programs. Nooo, you get the whole kaboodle at once with "cool" meters and dials and such. Everything separated in sections for you to collapse or fold. And of course partly customizable too!
I already know up front that this is going to s*ck big time (provided that they leave this as-is of course). Why you say? "You can customize it so quit whining; just turn it into something you want and move on!".
Yes but /that/ is just issue... I can customize it, but so can the end users. And if you have to troubleshoot other people's environment then sometimes nothing can be more annoying than having to change a lot of stuff in order to get the information you need.
I don't /want/ to spend 5 minutes tuning the event viewer before it tells me what I want!
And yes; I know we have Powershell which is an awesome admin tool. But that doesn't always weigh up against real-time monitoring, which the event viewer does.
So does this mean...
That MS is eventually planning to introduce subscription plans to "take your Windows online" just like they're already doing for the XBox platform ? :-)
Being an PS3 user its one of the things I never managed to grasp; having to pay in order to play your games online. And if I install said games onto my PC I can simply play online for free. Makes perfect sense to me, after several beers that is ;-)
That's not the point...
There are important issues to keep in mind here...
Microsoft pushes Metro forward as /the/ next big hit. Its /the/ platform for developers to reach "millions" of potential customers, its /the/ platform which makes application development easier than ever before ("you pick the language") and so on.
Yet this move clearly tells us that "Ok, we have the Metro interface but for the REAL user experience you've come to like so much use the desktop application". Office 2010? Its a desktop application. MS Expression web (for example)? Desktop application. And so on.
Where exactly does that leave Metro ? In order to start something I'm first taken /away/ from the desktop and if I want to experience the full deal (with Explorer for example) they'll put me right back onto that same desktop again...
Which then leaves me to wonder: Why do they take me away from said desktop in the first place?
/That/ is the main issue here. At least for us desktop users.
And as the previous responder also mentioned: Tablet users now seem to get the lesser end of the deal, because Metro is fully aimed at touch usage. So in order to use the fully enhanced touch interface they'll just have to cope with a trimmed down browser.
It just doesn't add up.
Bye bye security & ease of use!
I actually use IE9 from time to time, most of all to browse Microsoft related websites which I either need for work / study (TechNet, MSDN) or personally (Windows Live). Yes, I actually enjoy the experience too at times, but obviously SeaMonkey is what I like best and use most.
Still, lets take a look at some its "Invoegtoepassingen" (plugins) shall we ?
- Java plugin.
- Spybot-SD IE Protection
- Spybot - Search and Destroy configuration
- Adobe PDF Link Helper
Even Microsoft distributed pdf files and why do they want me to browse the Net without extra malware protection ? (Granted; Avast runs in the background too, but still...).
Now here is where it gets really stupid:
- Windows Live ID Sign-in Helper.
- Office Document Cache handler.
- Send to OneNote.
- Linked OneNote notitions.
- Include in blog using Windows Live writer.
I actually /rely/ on those OneNote plugins. In short: OneNote is an Office program allowing me to collect lots of information. From photo's to (voice) recordings and even text it can get from pictures through means of OCR (IMO really impressive feature). Needless to say you can also easily sort all this info to find it all back again :-)
Like last evening; I go over the TechNet Win8 dev. preview forum and notice some interesting comments. I mark those, right click and can immediately use "Send to OneNote". Done. I don't have to worry about where it goes, saving work if the power fails, I'm immediately done.
And later I can easily, at my own pase, go over all of those snippets again and sort 'm out. Some I save as reference, others I'll simply remove after having checked them out further (also applies to programming examples).
Sure; it works in SeaMonkey too (and I heavily use it there as well) but not as easily as "click -> send". More like "copy, start OneNote, paste".
And the best for last:
- Translate with Bing.
This is actually quite an interesting plugin (accelerator). Don't use it that often but whenever I do I think it does a fairly good job.
You don't really expect me to believe that missing out on all of that functionality would actually be an advantage for me? Microsoft; maybe you think some of your end-users are stupid (and yes, some of them really are) but not THAT stupid.
I think Apple may get the last laugh
Now, I'm not an Apple user myself but from the stories I've read Apple seems to do one thing undeniably right (IMO anyway): They're not betting on a single horse. Their tablet environment is just that whereas their desktop (or laptop) environments are also just that.
I wonder what would happen if MS would get a good market share on the tablet environment and lose even more on the desktop than they did with Vista... When looking at how "well" Metro works on the desktop (and how MS forcefully keeps ignoring the desktop market during their Win8 presentations) I wouldn't be at all surprised with such a scenario.
I'm missing another big name...
First; I wouldn't describe this to be a surprise visit. When you consider what's at stake for Microsoft I'd say it would have been a surprise if Mr. Ballmer didn't show up.
Now, I see a lot of big and bold statements yet all of those are driven by assumptions. He's assuming people will upgrade to Windows 8 (I wouldn't), assuming that all of the people who do upgrade will visit the MS App store on a regular basis (how else are you going to reach 500 million devices?) and so on...
Its all tablets, touching and mobility; the desktop seems no where to be found. But talking about mobility; where does Skype fit into all this (if at all) ? That was a HUGE investment for Microsoft; don't tell me they've ignored the whole thing so far?
The reason I associate it with mobility should be obvious: it even runs on my PSP (an older model) and does a remarkable job too.
I wonder what's up with that...
I think MetroWare is a much better description :-)
Which leaves the question...
...if the "full" environment will sell with a higher pricetag than the core server.
Because if that is the case then I think that many sysadmins out there won't be given much of a choice in the matter.
"Missed" the Yamaha Pocketrack
Now, in all honesty the Yamaha is more of a field recorder than a dictator. I tend to describe is as an "sound engineers swiss army knife". It has quite a bit to offer besides the standard functions like recording using a stereo microphone, supporting PCM 16/24 bit from 44.1 up to 96kHz. And even directly as mp3; from 32 right to 320kbps. An USB connects sits in the device and can be shifted out after which you simply stick it into a hub and it acts as a USB mass storage device. It comes with a build-in speaker, 2Gb storage on its own and the option to insert mini-sd cards.
And it also comes equipped with some "sound" tools like a tuner and a metronome, voice recording activation and a peak limiter. And you can use external headphones and/or microphones as well. Stuff you wouldn't use on a dictator, I know.
I figured I'd still mention it due to its very high recording quality and its price; it roughly sits inside the range you mentioned here going for approx. $130,- / 82 pounds which could make it a cheap alternative I think.
I'm well aware its Alpha.
But you cannot ignore the reason behind this preview; to give the developers a head start in adapting to the new Metro kaboodle. I mean; you /do/ know that next to the preview MS has also shipped versions of their Visual Studio and encourage everyone to look into creating Metro styled apps ?
MS can be stupid, but I don't see them doing this unless you already get a good preview here as to how everything is going to look. Otherwise they'd risk getting a lot of angry developers who are now learning X and end up needing to start all over to learn Y. I don't see that happening.