* Posts by Jim 59

1923 posts • joined 24 Jun 2009

Bill Gates says he'd do CTRL-ALT-DEL with one key if given the chance to go back through time

Jim 59

Re: ...wrote some truly awful software...

Micrisoft wrote the BASIC interpreter for the Dragon 32, as confirmed in the wake-up message. I enjoyed it, thanks Bill.

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Hitachi Data Systems is no more! Arise the new 'Hitachi Vantara'

Jim 59

Hitachi

$article = "" unless $article ~= /josticks|whale *song/;

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The developers vs enterprise architects showdown: You shall know us by our trail of diagrams

Jim 59

Broadly agree. Many "Devops" teams lack the "ops" experience to justify the name, and are sometimes just a group of well meaning developers and power users who have been given the root password. Cloud gives them the power to orchestrate, and they pump out instances blithely unaware of sysem basics, with predictable results. It isn't their fault though.

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Google sued for paying women less than men

Jim 59

...this isn't meant to imply that Claburn secretly agrees with Delmore, but to point out the general situation: Many people must now have, or quickly obtain, the "correct" views, or risk losing their jobs and livelihood.

This affects people across the media, in many large companies and public organisations.

Common sense indicates that many of these people will secretly disagree, but not dare to speak out..

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Jim 59

Thomas Claburn dismisses Damore's entire article without a pause:

"Among other ill-supported claims, he insisted there's no pay gap."

In fact the scientific claims Delmore made have since received some vindication. However, I would not advise any ambitious journalist to dwell on that, or to be seen to agree with Delmore in any way, because, as the author knows:

"Damore's tract got him fired shortly after it became public."

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Red Hat speed fiends celebrate automation

Jim 59

Ansible/Devops

In your devops team, I am sure there are qualified software engineeers. But how many team members have years of experience as real, full time systems administrators ?

Right. There aren't as many sysadmins in the world as their are devs. Devops teams tend to be lopsided. A better decription would be devdevdevdevdevops. So you end up with a polished and elegant Attlasian infrastructure, but everyone thinks that "Dirty Cow" is some James Herriot thing. Get more oppy. Your infrstructure will than you.

I'm not sure what the solution is. Giving me a rate rise would be a good start.

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Jim 59

Re: @Jim

"While I agree the single largest issue for most SA's *was* provisioning,..."

Eh? I have just written 2 posts arguing the opposite. Who are you agreeing with?

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Jim 59

Re: Commissioning

@Charlie Clark Who said my 7 interface server was real ? It's virtual, and so are the interfaces. Same issues apply.

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Jim 59

Re: Commissioning

Entropy is not the same as "uncontrolled changes". Entropy is also the build up of natural changes over time, eg. as files naturally grow and change, software ages, passwords change, and so on.

Eg. I need a new route adding to my critical server, which has 7 interfaces. Immutable infrastructure says I just roll out a new identical server but with the added route. However, that approach makes the large assumption no entropy has occurred which could impact the change. It also requires an interruption of service while a switchover is made to the new system. It also requires careful management of potential issues, eg. identical IP addresses, changing MAC addresses, changing system UUIDs, and much other stuff. In other words, it also requires a great deal more time, people and expense than the single command which could be used to add a route in the conventional way.

The moment a system is booted, it starts to change. Immutable?

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Jim 59

Commissioning

I love Ansible. But its main use is in commissioning new systems, and comissioning new systems was never really the problem. We already had many ways to do it: cloning, golden images and so on.

Ansible gives the impression that you can translate your infrastructure to a code base, and that tickles developers' fancies. But maintainance is the hard bit, as it always was. It isn't appropriate to release an ansible playbook all over your live, mission-critical server. The consequeces of even a small bug are just too great. Even if Ansible was used to build the system in the first place, the server has since been subject to 12 months of entropy, and is now a stranger to the parent Ansible code.

Roll out is comparitavely simple, and always was. What little complexity it contains is easily managed. Maintenance is more tricky.

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Oracle to shutter most Euro hardware support teams

Jim 59

"Oracle refused to comment. "

Oracle declined to comment..

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Atlassian kills God, rebrands as a mountain, a structurally unsound 'A' or a high five

Jim 59

Rejected.

Bring back this article when it contains the phrase "josticks and whalesong"

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Daily Stormer binned by yet another registrar, due to business risks

Jim 59

Morals

"If you are not opposed to this domain being hosted, you are a Nazi sympathiser, regardless of..." - careful @Kaltern. Becoming what one despises, and all that.

I agree that cencership is a necessary evil. But this is more about personal ethics than state censorship. I am strongly for free speech, but would not provide my contracting services to an organization like Stormer. Would you? Of course not. These companies feel the same way, and have done the right thing in my view.

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It's official: Users navigate flat UI designs 22 per cent slower

Jim 59

Semi visible text

Not to mention the absurd contrast theft which plagues "modern" websites. The Register is in the minority with its crisp black-and-white text. Many sites are now only readable with constant eye strain. Or they were until a few months ago. Those who brought us semi-visible text are now in full reverse-ferret, but my accountants still server up limp whiteish on whiter text, and Google search is still pretty gutless.

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UK.gov to treat online abuse as seriously as IRL hate crime

Jim 59

Safe space

It seems reasonable to treat online abuse like abuse in the street (as if you were shouting in somebody's face). In fact, I thought it was already treated like that.

The problem with a specific "hate speech" law is that it could be used as a means to silence criticism or dissent, leading to the "safe space" rubbish we see on some university campuses, bottling up extremism, and eventually promoting hate rather than reducing it.

"online" isn't the problem. "anonymity" is the problem. If Twitter could verify users' real names and addresses before letting them post, everyone would play (reaosonably) nice. I don't know technically how that could be done, but if you can figure it out you will be a rich man.

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Slapping crap bosses just got cheaper: Blighty's Supreme Court nixes tribunal fees

Jim 59

"At £750 an hour the price per day would be several times £1500."

It would indeed. Itemised, this was the barristers bill for just a couple of hours iirc.

I look forward to professional engineers like myself obtaining a similar closed shop arrangement, so that only people with a BEng are allowed to touch or operate computers, and we can charge similar amounts.

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Jim 59

The Supreme Court is part of the same legal profession that will, once you have filed your complaint and taken your employer to a tribunal, charge you £750 an hour or more for barrister representation.

In 2006 I took an employer to tribunal over unfair dismissal. It was all going well until it got to the part where hiring a barister was required (there is no choice; it is a requirement). Even for 1 day, the price was over £1500. Fortunately for me, the employer settled on terms before it came to court.

(Tip: tick that "family legal cover" box on your house insurance.)

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Gone daddy gone: GoDaddy offloads its cloud businesses

Jim 59

Seriously, what the f*** is any of this stuff.

Lol. An excellent question, suitable for many situations:

- project meetings

- lectures

- maths classes

- TED talks

Maybe if it were asked more often, we wouldn't have had stuff like systemd, Windows Vista, Jaws 3...

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Q. What's today's top language? A. Python... no, wait, Java... no, C

Jim 59

Re: In over 40 years of programming ...

@Jake same here, but if you are choosing a language in a commercial situation, a ready supply of people who know it will aid success of the project and reduce its future support costs. Hence, choosing on popularity makes sense.

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UK regulator set to ban ads depicting bumbling manchildren

Jim 59

There is a difference. Showing a mother doing the majority of the cooking is realistic, at least historically speaking. Showing a man as a baffoon is not realisic, historically or otherwise.

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Nearly three-quarters of convicted TV Licence non-payers are women

Jim 59

Unfortunately the Beeb now carries many adverts. For itself and its own products, maybe, but still annoying adverts. On TV every gap between progrmmes is filled with adverts for other programmes and pointless, expensive looking "idents" that seem to serve no purpose except self promotion. On radio, programmes are routinely interrupted right in the middle, as that honeyed voice says, for the 11th time, something about a furure programm you don't wish to listen too.

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Linus Torvalds may have damned systemd with faint praise

Jim 59

"But replacing it with a big, black box that basically replaces lots and lots of core functionality with its own ridiculous idea of a service in so many areas (DNS, etc.) just destroyed the concept for me."

Indeed. Systemd is entirely Windowsesque. Here's a tiny example from this morning. The command to list services in Ubuntu 14 is "sudo systemctl list-unit-files". Having a long output, you can pipe that in to "more", "less" or your preferred pager, as is the unix norm.

However, like a suspicious friend, systemctl is unhappy that you might be using another tool without talking to it first. So it gets involved. It does the terminal paging. Yes, there is, right there at the bottom of the systemctl man page. Systemd actually contains code to page user terminals. Only by invoking a third party pager, mind you, but there it is nontheless, systemd sticking its nose into the shell's business, to no advantage whatsoever. An annoyance, but also a small demonstration of the design which so many object to, and for sound reasons.

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Don't panic, but Linux's Systemd can be pwned via an evil DNS query

Jim 59

Re: Hang on, all y'all ...

Well said Jake, but it is precisely systemd's size, complexity and poor architecture that attracts the bugs, and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future. The systemd project has shown unbelievable naivety in being unaware of this basic fact of software engineering, don't you think?

It reminds me of the Unity debacle. Design a system which, for sound reasons, is disliked by many. Foist it on people. Don't listen to anybody. Carry on for years. What an awful waste.

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Tech industry thumps Trump's rump over decision to leave Paris climate agreement

Jim 59

Trump is wrong to pull out of the Paris agreement, it is a misjudgement. But hit attitude is right. He sticks up for the "common man". The American media (WaPo, CNN, NYT) certainly won't. And meanwhile the billionaires weep, while flying round in private jets and piutting down a personal carbon footprint the size of Neptne (as does Trump, probably).

But yeah he should have stayed in.

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systemd-free Devuan Linux hits RC2

Jim 59

Re: It's fascinating that Linux now has the same problem as Windows

I could upvote Christian's post until my mouse key wears out.

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It's 30 years ago: IBM's final battle with reality

Jim 59

GEM

I remember seeing a demonstration of GEM at the PCW show in 1986 or 1987, at - Olympia I think it was. Very impressive it was too. Didn't it also come bundled on some Amstrad PCs ?

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Today is the 211th anniversary of the Battle of Trafalgar

Jim 59

Admiral Lord Nelson?

That's Admiral Lord Viscount Nelson to you, sir.

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Linux greybeards release beta of systemd-free Debian fork

Jim 59

Fixing a problem on wheezy:

- look in text file. See error message. Take action

Fixing a problem in jessie (systemd):

- your main challenge here is in finding the error messages in the first place. This will usually be more complex a task than either the underlying problem or the remedial actions needed to fix it. Often you will just give up and take a series of guesses as to what the problem might be. Your third or fourth guess will be correct and so after trailing a number of solutions, a fix is at hand. Rather like trouble shooting Windows.

Got no axe to grind, just hate bad engineering.

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Silent Nork satellite tumbling in orbit

Jim 59

@Downside Well said to your whole post. Although I dislike the description "pantomime baddy", which is often applied to Kim Jong-un these days. It reminds me of Idi Amin, former president of Uganda, who was sometimes described in similar terms. He even played up to the "evil teddy bear" image, some say, in order to distract from what he really was - a psychopathic, mass-murdering dictator.

Amin, when he wasn't killing up to half a million people, awarded himself a doctorate of law as well as the Victoria Cross. There were even rumours he was a cannibal. Did he deliberately make his own evil cartoonish ? Who knows. Either way, Kim Jong-un seems like a photocopy.

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Snapchat TITSUP on heels of Google App Engine outage

Jim 59
Joke

Snapchat down

Oh no. Think of all the money they will be losing. Every second of downtime is profit lost.

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Amazon's new drones powered by Jeremy Clarkson's sarcasm

Jim 59

Drone delivery? Not a chance

Obvious, ongoing publicity stunt. The real "drones" are the poor people working in the Amazon warehouses.

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NetApp adds in-line dedupe to all-flash FAS arrays

Jim 59

In the home

I'd love a dedupe home NAS, so I can save space storing all those mp4 files - oh wait. No. Well then my massive FLAC archive, surely...no, can't dedupe that either. Well what about that massive archive of ISO images, I can, no, hang on,er... mp3, flv, encrypted backups, no, no, and no... jpegs no, gif no...

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Jim 59

Re: Dedupe

Backups of said data will still dedupe well.

Don't use a dedupe array as a backup target, tempting as it will seem. Yes, you would save tons of space. But for backups, you actually *want* to have multiple physical copies of the data, Not one physical copy and many logical copies (which is what deduped data is). If those physical blocks die, you could lose not just a single backup, but all generations of that backup within the deduped domain.

I guess another reason that dedupe isn't widespread is that storage is just so cheap now. Even for primary enterprise storage, what you pay for is the speed rather than the capacity. "Big data" might be a better candidate.

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Jim 59

Dedupe

Dedupe is still alive? It never seems to have lived up to its promise somehow, not since those heady days of 2008, before Data Domain was gobbled up by EMC.

Dedupe is a Nirvana, in theory. By now it was supposed to be everywhere: even in ZFS and Linux. One of the problems is that encrypted data can't be deduped, and encryption is becoming the norm in some areas. Corporate desktops (or at least laptops) are now usually encrypted. So is data held in the "cloud".

What happens to a 100TB array if somebody dumps 20TB of encrypted data on there? Do the inline ingesters just dumbly thrash themselves to death trying to dedupe/undedpue it, or do they know what they are dealing with and somehow skip those blocks? Compressed data almost as bad, eg. nearly all media files.

It seems that non-compressed, non-encrypted data will soon be restricted, perhaps, to internal corporate office servers. And who wants to buy a fancy DD SSD array system for that mundane stuff?

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Pope instructs followers to put the iPhone away during dinner

Jim 59

Back in August, the Pope warned that "chatting on the internet or with smartphones, watching TV soap operas" was not improving the quality of life but was "distracting attention away from what is really important" - like worshiping an all-powerful deity and overseeing a global network of adherents in dresses.

Really? Sub-Hopkins troll bait in The Register now?

Perhaps El Reg should spend more time writing, making phone calls and actually talking to people, and less time reading Twitter, chatting on the Internet, browsing Buzzfeed...

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Jim 59

Re: The Pope

Most of them, especially the children DIDN'T sign up....they were indoctrinated from birth, and never had the chance to reject this evil religion.

And why shouldn't parents indoctrinate their kids? That's what parents are for. My parents "indoctrinated" me with plenty of stuff, most of which turned out to be true and very useful.

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Jim 59

Re: Expert

There are many things to criticise the Catholic church for but this guy seems to be a good one overall

Benny's a good egg. Even if he is Argentinian.

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Jim 59

Re: Burn 'em all

Or how many times have I seen a family...mother, father, and x number of offspring sitting around a restaurant table, each with some sort of electronic device in their hands, their heads bowed, pecking away at the screen...and no one is talking to anyone else at the table.

Nice. Very sociable. You might as well sit in cupboard eating crisps.

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Jim 59

Re: new use for old stuff

Yes, the Pope has stated what we all knew, ie. staring at a glowing slab 23 hours a day might not be too healthy, and actually interacting with people such as your family/friends/house mates might be better, especially around meal times. He's not wrong. Slabbing or reading a book at the table has always been bad manners anyway.

Parents will likely agree with the Pope. Some teenagers (who are, of course, even more infallible than his Holiness) may disagree. Parents! Stand firm!

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Brace yourselves. Huawei’s launching an HCIA product

Jim 59

Re: Am I missing something?

Aren't all these appliances similar to blade architecture with shared components?

Blade systems eg. HP c7000, do not provide shared storage in the box (except for each blade's boot disks), but instead use an external SAN.

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Coding with dad on the Dragon 32

Jim 59

Re: Learning.

Ah, the good old days when you could buy a computer at newsagent's, switch it on and enjoy. Without being your own systems administrator, installing AV, worrying about drivers, running out of storage (more cassette tapes always available), worrying about encryption, security, phone bills, compatibility with other systems, OS crashes, BIOS problems data backups, wireless strength etc...

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Jim 59

I would like to point out a couple of the errors in this article. But I can't, because, simply, Dragon 32 owners are never wrong about anything, ever. One can only congratulate the author on 33 years of utter win.

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PC sales will rise again, predicts Intel, but tablets are toast

Jim 59

Re: Get real!

If you want to know what your private data looks like at Google or Microsoft or any of the other places that collect it, then picture a giant sand dune. It's in there somewhere, one or two grains.

No problem. It's called data mining and re-identification. And it's all covered by the Google and MS terms and conditions.

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Jim 59

Rich

Paragraph 4: It used to be the case that people upgraded their PCs every two years or so...

What! You Londoners are so rich.

Most people renew their PC every 6 years, after Windows has slowly strangled it by installing oceans of unwanted guff, killing performance so much the hapless user can hardly log in anymore. The simple solution of reinstalling Windows from disk is no longer possible for home users. They must take the PC to the shop for a "clean up", or buy a new one. Most buy a new one, not wanting to share their pr*n collection with the local laddo.

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Jim 59

Re: Get real!

Agreed. It's fine storing your accounts in the "cloud", so long as you are paying the provider, under a binding contract which will hit them with big penalties after any data breach or data loss. But using a "free" service is something you should only do occasionally for data you care nothing about. Anyone doubting this can read the Google/MS/Dropbox T&Cs.

Sure, use Google docs to write flyer for the local fete. But remember, it is part of Google now, not your flyer. You get what you pay for.

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KeePass looter: Password plunderer rinses pwned sysadmins

Jim 59

Re: Windows-only

Ditto on Android - keepassdroid

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Jim 59

Re: Still better than a password-protected MS Office document!

So, when deciding whether to use a web-based or local password manager you have to assess whether your machine or the web company is more likely to be compromised...

Unless you are *paying* the cloud provider to hold your data securely, under a contract with appropriate penalties should there be a security breach, there isn't really any security at all. What I am saying is, the free cloud providers have no interest in your security, and owe you nothing, because you are not paying for the service. Anyone in doubt of that can see the T&Cs.

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Xiaomi preps Linux laptops for the post Christmas sales rush

Jim 59

Mint

I am also a Mint 17.2 user. To whom it may concern: it runs fine on my MXI cx61 laptop. Except that the wireless was poor. To fix that I bought one of these mini dongles

http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B010AKMF3Y?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o02_s01

which was also poor until I followed the procedure on the following page

https://sites.google.com/site/easylinuxtipsproject/reserve-7

Rock solid now.

Regarding eggsnow, they have some good stuff. I am tempted by their mini, fanless servers.

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Jim 59

Er, will they be on sale in the UK?

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Dad who shot 'snooping vid drone' out of the sky is cleared of charges

Jim 59

Re: Bullit County

Good ol' boy!

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