* Posts by Alister

3265 posts • joined 19 May 2010

Julian Assange wins at hide-and-seek game against Sweden

Alister Silver badge

I do hope that the Metropolitan Police Service are not going to let Assange slip through their fingers, if they reduce the resources they allocate to watching him.

The gurning twat is still a criminal.

Bye bye MP3: You sucked the life out of music. But vinyl is just as warped

Alister Silver badge

just take one step back to CD. You'll get fantastic quality audio, no skipping or crackling,

Hmm, beg to differ. CDs are not immune from the dreaded skipping.

This may be a consequence of having young offspring who apparently see CDs as an occasional side plate for their food, or a coaster for their fruit juice, in addition to their data and audio holding properties...

Faking incontinence and other ways to scare off tech support scammers

Alister Silver badge

Re: Quick solution

While playing elaborate pranks on the scammers may be fun, you are wasting your own time as well as theirs -- and your time is probably much more valuable, to you at least.

This is not the proper BOFH spirit!

NOTHING is more important than having fun taking the piss out of these scammers.

(Oh, except preparing a roll of carpet, a bag of lime and a large block of cement for the next luser who dares to raise a support ticket)

And finally, monsieur, a wafer-thin hologram ... Sir, it is only wafer thin

Alister Silver badge

Re: Help me Obi-wan Kenobi...

@Loyal Commenter

Did you mean:

"This is not the pop-culture reference you are looking for..."

Alister Silver badge

Re: Help me Obi-wan Kenobi...


Just saying.

Windows Server's footprint shrunk to reduce Azure bills

Alister Silver badge

Re: After wasting space on OUR disks for decades...

Using DISM to remove payload files and update rollbacks is all very well, but it still doesn't address the issue that any Roles and Features install themselves to the C: drive as well by default. Consider IIS, it puts both the web root, and all the log files, on the C: drive. Yes, you can change it, but why would it do that in the first place?

And speaking of log files, although you might get away with a Standard install of Server 2012 or 2016 in 32GB, after about 6 months use you would be lucky if it still fits within that restriction, given all the logging, crash dumps, etc that happens as a normal part of the operation of the server, unless you set up a ruthless cull of all logs at regular intervals.

Alister Silver badge

Re: Server 2012 Barely runs in 32Gb

WTF are the talking about?

WTF are you on about?

The article is about DISK

Management's agile, digital (insert buzzword here) strategy ossifying? Blame the Red Queen

Alister Silver badge

Blame the Red Queen

You can't talk about Larry like that!!

Police anti-ransomware warning is hotlinked to 'ransomware.pdf'

Alister Silver badge

As you can see, we clicked the link – and after routing through some standard email marketing click tracker stuff, it hotlinks to a file titled "Ransomware.pdf". We chose not to let it open in our VM.

And you didn't try the file link from a Mac or Linux box?

For shame...

Yo, patch that because scum still wanna exploit WannaCrypt-linked vuln

Alister Silver badge

I fail to understand not just why, but how, there are so many windows machines with SMB open to the internet.

If some home user puts a server on their broadband, then that doesn't automatically open that port, you would have to consciously add port-forwarding rules for it.

Conversely, I find it difficult to believe that any business would attach a server to the internet without some form of firewall controlling access, and again there must have been a conscious decision to allow SMB out of the network.

This is not something that happens by mistake, nor is it default behaviour, so what the hell are people thinking who configure stuff like this?

Flying robots are great... until they meet flying humans, anyway

Alister Silver badge

A very difficult task, and one which bears no resemblance to classic ATC.

You can't restrict delivery drones to a certain air corridor, or altitude, when they may need to access ground level at almost any geographical location.

This is why I don't see the commercial benefit of using flying delivery drones over ground based options, it smacks to me simply as "because we can" or "because it's cool".

Ultimately one man and a van still seems to me to be the optimum method for most deliveries.

Robot lands a 737 by hand, on a dare from DARPA

Alister Silver badge

Re: Voice recognition

"Okay 'Otto', I have the controls"

Roger, Over.

What's our vector, Victor?

Have a go with this WW2 German Lorenz cipher machine – in your browser

Alister Silver badge

You can even import and export yours and your mates' key settings and connect directly to their machines

Hmmm, interesting...

Word to the wise – it's not on an HTTPS site, so if you're hoping to use it to thwart GCHQ, you might want to think again.

Oh, damn...

74 countries hit by NSA-powered WannaCrypt ransomware backdoor: Emergency fixes emitted by Microsoft for WinXP+

Alister Silver badge

Re: Hunt to blame for NHS attack

Hopefully this will renew pressure on NHS IT to find a solution to upgrade those ancient os's.

Yeah, great, now all you've got to do is get the government to pay for it.

It is not "NHS IT" who are at fault, it is those that hold the purse strings.

Alister Silver badge

Re: "Ban Bitcoin!"

Cue Amber Rudd demanding that Bitcoint be "shut down" or that we put "a backdoor in the hashblock".

Oh, it gets better than that...

UK Home Secretary Amber Rudd tells BBC she expects NHS trusts to learn from cyber-attack and upgrade IT systems

Maybe she should talk to Jeremy Hunt about why he stopped paying for extended support from Microsoft in 2015, and why he vetoed any upgrade strategy from XP?

WannaCrypt ransomware snatches NSA exploit, fscks over Telefónica, other orgs in Spain

Alister Silver badge

Nobody thinks this and the NHS are related?

Telefónica does provide VoIP and Network facilities to the NHS as far as I know.

UK hospital meltdown after ransomware worm uses NSA vuln to raid IT

Alister Silver badge

Re: these exploits are worthless

this is not a ¨cyber attack¨, this is somebody with admin privileges clicking on something they should not have done.

Curious then that it has affected so many dispersed bits of the country. I think you'll find that the evidence so far is that this is collateral damage from an attack on Telefonica (who just happen to manage network links for some of the NHS).

Beeb hands £560m IT deal to Atos. Again

Alister Silver badge

Whatever big contract is awarded and then reported on this website, everyone slams the provider for being crap.

Well yes. This is because all of the big providers, who inevitably get the contracts awarded to them, have a long history of failing to deliver what they are contracted to do - in some cases, failing to produce anything tangible at all.

And yet despite this, the government persist in awarding more contracts - often for the same requirements, to the same providers.

Alister Silver badge

I would be interested to hear Malcolm Tucker's views on this, just let me put my earplugs in first...

A bleary-eyed Microsoft wakes up after its cloud, IoT party, clears throat: 'Oh yeah, so Windows...'

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Windows 10 Fail Creators Update

Maybe they should have used Windows 10 Autumn Creators Update - Less likely to be misinterpreted?

Space upstart plans public cloud in low Earth orbit

Alister Silver badge

That’s some nicely blue-sky thinking, but not the work of space cadets.


Huge flying arse makes successful test flight

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Bulgarian Auxiliary Landing System.

UK General Election 2017: How EU law will hit British politicians' Facebook fight

Alister Silver badge

It is reported, too, that both the Leave and Remain campaigns used the services of analytics firm NationBuilder in 2016.

Perhaps this explains why they both lied through their teeth in an effort to swing votes?

Rich professionals could be replaced by AI, shrieks Gartner

Alister Silver badge

In five years we could have Triage AI

For example in healthcare, this could keep GP load and A&E load lower, which will help the NHS greatly.

You can tell that this is written by someone with no knowledge of healthcare. Human Doctors and medical professionals regularly mis-diagnose patients, due to confusing / overlapping or non-typical signs and symptoms, how do you suppose an AI would fare?

And can you imagine the outcry, and ambulance chasing (literally) if an AI's misdiagnosis led to someone's death?

Fake ruse: USA Today calls the FBI after half of its 15m Facebook Likes turn out to be bogus

Alister Silver badge

Re: Why the FBI is involved?

FBI = Face Book Investigations

ISPs must ensure half of punters get advertised max speeds

Alister Silver badge

can you end the DFS sale too?

I had occasion to drive past DFS on Easter Monday, and they were not advertising a sale!

I nearly crashed!

WhatsApp is more like WhatsDown: Messenger collapsed for millions

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They don't host it on Cloudflare do they?

US Navy developers test aircraft carrier drone control software

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The MD-5 Unmanned Carrier Aviation Mission Control System (UMCS) was tested under lab conditions using a lorry in place of the drone

Hmm, that must have been interesting, a flying lorry, whatever next!

Another AI assistant... It's getting crowded in here, isn't it, Siri?

Alister Silver badge

Re: Bixby?

The eventual goal for Bixby is to be able to do everything on a phone that a user could do themselves

You forgot the last bit of the sentence ...with their fingers

Um, you know what, given the context, forget I said that...

Loadsamoney: UK mulls fining Facebook, Twitter, Google for not washing away filth, terror vids

Alister Silver badge

(I'm not going to trot out the cliche of one man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter),

you just did...


Boffins gently wake the Large Hadron Collider from annual hibernation

Alister Silver badge

Winter upgrade boosted 'inverse femtobarns'

Um, is this another way of saying they "reversed the polarity of the neutron flow"?

Just asking...

'I feel violated': Engineer who pointed out traffic signals flaw fined for 'unlicensed engineering'

Alister Silver badge

So did they prosecute him for saying "I'm an engineer", or for actually working out a better method of controlling traffic-light cameras?

What I'm getting from this is that if an American hobbyist inventor (think Trevor Bayliss) lived in Oregon, he would be prosecuted for his "unlicensed engineering" if he tried to turn a great idea into a commercial product.

Unlicensed thinking, it appears, is frowned upon!

Need the toilet? Wanna watch a video ad about erectile dysfunction?

Alister Silver badge

I can see some fun to be had if they introduce IoT Hand Dryers.

If a washroom has enough, you could perhaps manage to achieve lift-off, or at least create a pressure differential sufficient to expel people from the room.

China launches aircraft carrier the length of 2.1 brontosaurs

Alister Silver badge

It would appear that their aircraft carrier has the unprecedented ability to launch and recover aircraft. This must be new and innovative, as the British design never managed to incorporate that feature.

FTP becoming Forgotten Transfer Protocol as Debian turns it off

Alister Silver badge

We still use ftp extensively to move backup files around within our WAN. It's still the fastest method of transferring a file over a network, with the least overhead, that I know.

Jimbo announces Team Wikipedia: 'Global News Police'

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The site will employ professional journalists

Oh good, are they from Fox News or the Daily Mail, one wonders?

As far as I know, being a "professional journalist" doesn't necessarily mean the stories produced are either truthful or well researched.

Give 'bots a chance: Driverless cars to be trialled between London and Oxford

Alister Silver badge

how far one of them could get

Well I've got all of West Mids and East Mids, between me and them, so I'm feeling fairly secure :)

Alister Silver badge

Well, I'm really glad I live "Up North". I'll keep an ear out for the crashes, bangs and screaming coming from below Watford Gap...

Cuffing Assange a 'priority' for the USA says attorney-general

Alister Silver badge

Re: Is an Australian even allowed to run for Parliament?

Technically, he isn't in the UK, he's in Ecuador...

Intelligent robots can walk the walk – but if they can't talk the talk, we can't get along

Alister Silver badge

Yes, we have expert systems but they are not much more than advanced logic controllers - if this, do that or nothing.

What is being touted as AI is nothing more than marketing hype to try and get a commercial advantage, or in the case of universities, funding.

Absolutely! It's on a par with calling radio controlled models Robots (as in Robot Wars), there's bugger all autonomous or robotic about them, and there's sod all intelligence at the current level of AI.

Alister Silver badge

If I ask it to haul its whist, what will happen?

It'll try and pull a card game?

Internet Society tells G20 nations: The web must be fully encrypted

Alister Silver badge

Re: About f'ing time encryption was pushed as compulsory on the internet!

Ban all unencrypted traffic, like HTTP or FTP, which are both vulnerable to monitoring and MitM modification

This is nearly as bad as the government's "Ban Encryption" stance. There's no need to ban HTTP or FTP, they are both perfectly good protocols for certain requirements. The problem comes with inappropriate use - for instance HTTP for passing credentials.

And frankly, the use of MITM by criminal elements is wildly exaggerated, it is most unlikely that some "hacker" has managed to get in the middle of anybody's browsing session or FTP connection. Most leaked credentials come from malware on the host, or by compromising a database on a server.

For MITM it is far more likely that your local friendly government, your ISP, or even the company you work for are the culprit (using a web proxy is increasingly common in the workplace).

Who really gives a toss if it's agile or not?

Alister Silver badge

Re: If you aren't making mistakes in IT


The AC made a comment, it was not a Reply at all.

'US falling behind China' in semiconductors but storage startup promises to kiss it better

Alister Silver badge

Great, so US company has some innovative ideas about designing semiconductors. I wonder which Asian country will be manufacturing the chips for them?

Point-and-pwn tool for posers dumbs down ransomware spreading

Alister Silver badge

Re: Embarcadero boasts its Tiobe index results for Delphi...

Agreed, as soon as I saw the screenshot I thought, "that looks like Delphi or C++ Builder"

UK gov draws driverless car test zone around M40 corridor

Alister Silver badge

A UK minister has reassured the motor industry that buyers of driverless cars will not have to employ a gentleman with a red flag and top hat

What a shame, I was looking forward to seeing that happen on the M25...

WONTFIX: No patch for Windows Server 2003 IIS critical bug – Microsoft

Alister Silver badge

learning curve

To help maintainers of Windows Server 2003 computers block almost inevitable attacks under these unfavorable circumstances, we decided to provide them a free solution: a micropatch for CVE-2017-7269, which they can apply on their machines not only without rebooting, but also without even restarting Internet Information Services.

Maybe they could teach Microsoft how they did this, as Microsoft appear to be incapable of writing any update which doesn't require a reboot.

US cops, firefighters to get new emergency wireless network – AT&T to get $6.5bn

Alister Silver badge

How Ironic that in the UK, the government is doing its damdest to move emergency services off their own dedicated network, and on to public cellular infrastructure. Not a recipe for disaster in any way, no...

Ford to build own data centre to store connected car data

Alister Silver badge

see, I knew my maths was wrong. :)

I didn't honestly think they would be storing it in DRAM, either.

New plastic banknote plans now upsetting environmental campaigners

Alister Silver badge


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