* Posts by J. Cook

649 posts • joined 16 Jul 2007

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Want to know what an organisation is really like? Visit the restroom

J. Cook
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Re: We need some ...

@Stevie: I nearly S*%t myself laughing from your post. I used to be a janitor quite a few years ago, and I've encountered nearly all of those. (There was the one time when I walked in and someone must have had to figure out how to bring an elephant in, because the pile of matter in the bowl came up almost to the seat. Then there was the time some druggie decided to cut themselves pretty good or so something, because there was enough blood on the (thankfully, tile) floor that I dumped the industrial 'destroys ALL LIFEFORMS' grade cleaner straight out of the jug on the floor and let it sit for a couple minutes before mopping that disaster up.

All in all, I think the best 'clever' sign was over the urinals in the men's room of one of the clients I went to when I was doing small business server support: "We aim to please. Aim too, please."

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You're toxic, I'm slippin' under: SCL, Cambridge Analytica file for US bankruptcy

J. Cook
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Joke

Re: The sleaziest excuse

California?! I thought y'all meant Computer Associates! (the original CA, unless you count 'CA' meaning a Certificate Authority....)

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Bowel down: Laxative brownies brought to colleague's leaving bash

J. Cook
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Re: Revenge is a dish best served wet

I dunno; me, I'd lace my lunch with a good deal of super hot sauce, if I was the type of person who left their lunch in a shared refrigerator. (I use an insulated lunch bag with ice packs instead.)

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Airbus windscreen fell out at 32,000 feet

J. Cook
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Re: PPRuNe thread

"My favourite pilot landing story has to be the FedEx flight 705."

*pulls up the wikipedia article* HOLY [expletive] that's hardcore. And the plane is still in service?!?! wow.

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Citrix snuffs Xen and NetScaler brands

J. Cook
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Re: Stupid Marketing Morons

Indeed.

WTF do I call the load balancing/application features of the Netscaler now? (and even then, we are moving back to the F5 appliances that the netscaler supplanted two managers ago, because we couldn't get the netscaler to play nicely with Cisco Prime ISE, even after getting citrix's highest tier support involved and spending two months on it.)

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Fixing a printer ended with a dozen fire engines in the car park

J. Cook
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Re: Photocopiers and isopropyl alcohol don't mix well.

... And here I always worry when I'm wiping figerprints off the 3d printer's bed while it's getting up to temp with isopropyl. (haven't had a fire yet, but the thing only gets up to 40-50 degrees, and I apply the alcohol to a towel, then wipe the bed with it.)

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J. Cook
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Pint

Re: Had the fire brigade called to a five star hotel, in Malta....

"Cue regular and repeated fire alarms as various items were nuked and ended up blackened and smoking, or in one memorable case literally molten and on fire.

Needless to say neither the vending machine or the microwaves are here any more."

And that is why we can never have anything nice.

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It's 2018, and a webpage can still pwn your Windows PC – and apps can escape Hyper-V

J. Cook
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FAIL

The APT is apparently a hidden feature or a 'premium' feature with an additional charge or something- We've gotten quite a few phish/malware-laden emails here at [RedactedCo] from compromised O365 accounts, and it's a pisser every time having to explain to the infosec people "if I block the servers that are sending these, we'll lose revenue from *many* partners and other companies."

fail icon because Microsoft.

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Windows Notepad fixed after 33 years: Now it finally handles Unix, Mac OS line endings

J. Cook
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Go

Notepad++

'nuff said.

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Australian prisoner-tracking system brought down by 3PAR defects

J. Cook
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Re: HPE "Enterprise class"

We did a very risky thing back in 2012 here at [RedactedCo] and put Nimble CS220G arrays in at the two production sites that make [RedactedCo]'s money. For production. using a (poorly designed) transactional system that have a tendancy to use brute force and ingnorance style SQL queries.

both array's have been absolute champs- one of them has had... two? three? media failures (2 HDD, one SSD), and the other had one of it's controllers not come back after an upgrade. none of these failures even slowed them down.

My only worry with the HPE acquisition is that our support experience will go downhill.

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Admin needed server fast, skipped factory config … then bricked it

J. Cook
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Hmmm... we still have a couple machines with manual 120/240 switches on them; they are old, old industrial PCs (i.e., the processor is on a card, all the other cards slot onto a backplane board). the company that built them are in the process of end of lifing them as their customers finally move into the current century.

We had one fail on us, and the replacement was sent out... with the voltage switch set to 120. made quite a nice bang when it was plugged into the 208v power strips in our data center.

Then there was the tech who was installing Dish TV receivers, and didn't realize that none of them were auto-ranging until about the third one went bang instead of just quietly venting magic smoke...

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MacBook Pro petition begs Apple for total recall of krap keyboards

J. Cook
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Re: Issue 1 of a comic

I'd like to point out that the "T" series (i.e. the thinkpad branded models) were never part of this; those are generally the only models I'd recommend.

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My PC is on fire! Can you back it up really, really fast?

J. Cook
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Hmmm...

Things I've either seen in person, or dealt with the aftermath of:

The print head from a 24 pin printer

The aforementioned wall switch in a house

No less than five instances of PSU blowouts- one caused by 220v on the neutral line, one from the 110/220 switch being set wrong.

A 2 phase pool pump motor showing extreme displeasure with only getting a single phase (it popped and smoked)- the little bitty motor running the day on/off timer that turned said motor on and off simply stopped working entirely

There's probably some others, but that's all I remember.

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J. Cook
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Re: pcs.. no...

"Long time ago now, but a college triggered a fire alarm by sticking a potato in a microwave for 20+ minutes and wandering off."

Sweet mother of mog, what a pillock.

I used to work for a credit union, and one of their branch offices had the drive through lanes and tellers in a separate building from the main building. They were linked by a large pneumatic tube, and things worked out normally- until one of the tellers in the drive thru building burnt popcorn. the smell propagated all the way to the main building, and that's when popcorn got banned at that place. :)

About the worst fire incident I've ever witnessed was when I accidentally immolated a wall switch that was in a small closet that used to hold the house's gas heater by toggling it's breaker too many times. Got a face full of ABC dry chemical as I put the fire out for my trouble, which was followed about ten seconds later by the fire department rolling up. (the other person in the house called the fire department, which was just down the street.)

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BOFH: But I did log in to the portal, Dave

J. Cook
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Joke

Interesting; I did not know that.

To really abuse Anthony Ray's lyrics: I like big booms and I cannot lie.

(in the absence of booms, hoever, stuff that has a required minimum safe viewing distance is adequate compensation.)

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J. Cook
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Re: And then there's Crisco...

Obviously, he's talking about Cisco, whom I thought this BOFH was about before I waded into the HPE slugfest here in the comments.

You know it's bad when your account exec for a company has problems with his company's support site...

Definately + MANY on IBM's support offerings: I once spent two weeks plus trying to track down the two or three people who had a clue about their SKLM product (encryption key manager for tape libraries) to see if we still had support on that product; By the time I got an answer, I had found the buried documentation on how to do what I needed to do with it...

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ISO blocks NSA's latest IoT encryption systems amid murky tales of backdoors and bullying

J. Cook
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Re: "I would consider your fridge [..] to not require a particularly strong encryption"

"Fridges are the cause of many house fires."

Primarily because no one ever bothers to clean around the working parts of it. (And before anyone points fingers, I'm guilty as charged; I did mine last year and pulled ~5 years of collected cat fur, dust, and other detrius off the running gear, which ran about two inches think in some parts. The prompt for this? The fan was making noise. It's running a lot better now. :) )

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J. Cook
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Re: "the NSA started attacking the reputations of those experts"

"Trust is currency, earned in service and spent in betrayal." - Commodore Karl Tagon (handwritten annotation to ‘The Seventy Maxims of Maximally Effective Mercenaries’)

The NSA lost my trust a long time ago.

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Painful Hammer blow: Commvault CEO ousted, costs and staff face cuts as financial figures falter

J. Cook
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I have a feeling that this request will fall upon deaf ears...

Please, for the love of all that is sacred and holy, leave the support group the hell alone. they've been a pleasure to work with in the times I've called them up (sometimes in a full on panic!) to either fix a broken job setup, or other things (like the time the mag pool ate itself on a double disk failure and took the entire array down; while the data was irrecoverable, their support staff helped this this panicked admin get the system back underway with a minimum of hassle.)

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Fancy that, Fancy Bear: LoJack anti-laptop theft tool caught phoning home to the Kremlin

J. Cook
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Worrisome? Yes. Surprising? Not really.

It's worrisome, because part of the software's residency is at the BIOS/firmware level, which is one of the ways it's able to remain persistent.

Not surprising, because I had long suspected them of using 'security by obscurity' to protect themselves.

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Supercycle to su-'meh'-cycle: Apple iPhone warehouses heave with unsold Notches

J. Cook
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And also, the $1000 X has nothing that screams 'BUY ME', and in fact has removed a few things I found rather useful.

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J. Cook
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Shoot, my personal iFruit is still a 5S, which I'll probably hold onto until apple stops supporting it entirely. the work brick is a 6S, which also does exactly what I need.

Strangely enough, the reason I went apple is because the android phones I had (samsung galaxy whatever) had this thing where I'd just not get phone calls, or indications of voice mail, until I restarted it, at which point I got the missed call indicators, but not the voicemails. (it didn't help that bouncing between three different numbers due to management shenanigans probably borked my voicemail account, but still...) I wanted a cell phone that could actually, you know. tell me if someone was calling, which this 6s does.

(the 5s was done because of the management shenanigans- I wanted to be able to leave the phone and my badge on a desk with my exit manifesto and leave in a hurry at one point in my job.)

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Umm, Oracle – about that patch? It might not be very sticky ...

J. Cook
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Coat

... I wacky-parsed the headline as "Umm, Oracle – about that patch? It might be very stinky ..."

*wanders off to correct the excess amount of blood in the caffeine stream*

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Windows 10 April 2018 Update lands today... ish

J. Cook
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Re: "Keep clicking, Windows-lovers! It's bound to come along soon."

Enterprise is also the most expensive option, and IIRC, you can *only* get it if you have an enterprise agreement (EA) and possibly Premier agreement active.

And even *THEN* you still have to de-crappify the client to remove patently non-business shite like the Xbox crap and other stuff that has no business being baked into the enterprise build.

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Boss sent overpaid IT know-nothings home – until an ON switch proved elusive

J. Cook
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Ah, the 3si and 4si...

Those beasts were good for at least 4 mil. then you overhauled then with a new gear train and some of the other major componants, and it'll be good for another 4 mil...

[RedactedCo] had some 4250's with about two mil on their counters when I started working there back in 2006- they ran upwards of 200K a month through those poor things.

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In a touching Monty Python tribute today, Microsoft's Office 365 makes everything spam

J. Cook
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Re: This is News?

See, that's the point- One *shouldn't* have to whitelist the same domain that the system is authoritative for.

And don't even get me started on Outlook's Junk mail filters, which stubbornly Do Whatever The F&@k They Want, even after setting up stuff on Exchange (which it's supposed to honor) AND setting a group policy to manually whitelist a set of domains (which it's also supposed to honor).

I've been fighting that with Exchange On-prem here at [RedactedCo] with some of the automated reports that come from the machine next to it.

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J. Cook
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Re: At FozzyBear, re: Is O365 the dead parrot?

And annoyingly enough, I'm seeing more and more phishing emails being sent from O365 customers- Apparently, O doesn't have even basic anti-malware or A/V scanning done on the outbound side...

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PC recycler gets 15 months in the clink for whipping up 28,000 bootleg Windows 7, XP recovery discs

J. Cook
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That's still correct. the OEM copy of windows xp and windows 7 can only be used ONCE. If you are a company that refurbishes the machines for resale, you have to put the refurbisher COA sticker on it (along with technically removing the OEM COA).

MS has since gotten... _worse_ in regards to what you can and can not do with the OEM COA keys.

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Sysadmin unplugged wrong server, ran away, hoped nobody noticed

J. Cook
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Re: access request hitler

[RedactedCo] has these in our data centers, although one of them is jet black because A) No one has bothered to peel it off and expose a ‘fresh’ pad; and B) there’s a ludacris amount of traffic in and out of there.

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Tech bribes: What's the WORST one you've ever been offered?

J. Cook
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Yeah, the socks are for SOX..

One of my co-workers is the official Sock Collector- We've gotten a couple pairs from Sophos over the last couple years.

Worst swag? a really chinzy multi-end USB charge cable. in rubbereized neon pink.

Best swag? one of our VARS has handed over a couple golf shirts, which are actually pretty nice, except that the VAR's logo has been embroidered on them. At least that's what I've been given.

The 'meh' swag has ranged from notebooks to twist pens with the tablet rubber tip on one end to goofy thumb drives. One storage vendor puts a 6-1 screwdriver in the crate of every array they sell, which is nice and all, but I've already got a bag full of nicer tools.

The strangest? That would be the view-master stereoscope in jet black with a custom disc with the vendor's marketing pitch aka a spy movie. *eyerolls* that'd be great if I had any of the old disc when I was.. oh. 6 years old left lying around...

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Windows 10 Spring Creators Update team explains the hold-up: You little BSOD!

J. Cook
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Re: RE: AC

I'll stick with Lenovo's T series, if only because while it's no longer the thinkpad I've come to know and loathe, it's at least aimed at corporates who tend to get cranky when their vendors start jerking them around...

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J. Cook
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Boffin

Re: Bring my optical disk drive back!!

This. It's annoying, especially if you've gotten one of those fancy optical drives without an eject button. ;) Me, I don't mind quite as much, but then, the windows 10 machine I have (referred to here at [RedactedCo] as 'Patient Zero') doesn't have an optical drive.

You can also try this:

Open File Explorer, View tab of ribbon, Options. That will open the Folder Options dialog.

Under view tab:

Un-Check "Hide Empty Drives" (along with any other preferences- I rather like seeing the damned file extensions, so I uncheck that as well, and show hidden files, folders, drives), Apply, OK.

That *should* bring it back...

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The law of run Nintendo consequences: Sega brings out mini Mega Drive / Genesis

J. Cook
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Re: So exactly what they've been letting AtGames sell for years?

"But on the plus side, there's a model that comes in a nice handheld size, and accepts an SD card for additional games, which would be a lot more effort to reproduce using a Raspberry Pi."

Well.... It should be possible to stuff a Pi under a modest sized screen, bung in some controls on a board on either side, and slap a battery pack on the back of it all to run it.

As far as a plug in model, shoot- there are companies selling RetroPIE kits in your choice of nostalgia-inducing cases on amazon for a while now; I was half tempted to buy one until I looked at the price.

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Windows Admin Center: Vulture gets claws on browser-based server admin

J. Cook
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Joke

Re: Great. Webmin for windows

" It isn't web-based, since it was introduced about 20 years ago, but that does mean that its communications paths are reliable and securable."

...Except where an IE rendering bug with the Exchange 2010 Snap-in caused the MMC to branch to NULL and hang, forcing you to pop open task mangler and gun the process.

Otherwise, it sure is nice n stable. :)

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VMs: Imperfect answers to imperfect problems, but they're all we have

J. Cook
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Heh.

One of the things that I ran into last week was an ill-behaved VM appliance not just crashing, but it caused the host to spontaneously reset at the same time. (as in if someone either pulled the power plug out or pressed the hard reset button on the machine reset) I've seen VMs mis-behave, but this is the first time I've seen one take out the host in such a dramatic manner. (I've also seen the hardware cause ESXi to purple screen as well, but that's not entirely unheard of.)

Fortunately, this was not in our production environment, but in our test lab arena, so the only problems it caused was with the other apps we have in that environment. *shrugs* And I was able to find a work around (i.e., re-deploy the appliance to different hardware), so it wasn't all that bad

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J. Cook
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Re: Not all containers are created equal

I will second your comments about Type 1 hypervisors (ESX/ESXi)- When I came into the network group at [RedactedCo] in 2009, we had just started to virtualize most of our applications- prior to that, we were buying 1U rackmounts for each application, which was.. not an efficient use of resources.

As far as machines being massively over powered? Spot on- On average, one of our 'production' hosts nearly 40 VMs, and sits at around 40% CPU utilization. Memory is about the same, but we performed a massive upgrade in that respect in order to get enough slack to be able to tolerate a host failure in the cluster.

As far as containers? I don't think any of our vendors knows what they are, let alone use them. :)

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'Disappearing' data under ZFS on Linux sparks small swift tweak

J. Cook
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Pint

We need a popcorn icon...

... because I added a couple words to my dictionary of the profane and obscene from this thread. :)

re: APFS - Perhaps someone could reverse engineer it, like what was done for the NTFS driver and CIFS / SMB protocols? Just saying. (And no, I'm not volunteering for that- you don't want me anywhere NEAR that codebase, based on prior experience.)

re: Microsloth bashing - Considering that it took the Exchange team upwards of 9 months+ to recognize that there was an interaction problem with the 2010 Management Console and the MMC executable that it ran under, I wouldn't be surprised if some goofy bug in, say, ReFS screwed people over for a couple months before the responsible team got around to looking at it. (And yes, I do know about the zombie bug from pay of last year- that's more a case of 'someone trying deliberately do break stuff', but it's not surprising that the bug it leverages exists- Normal admins aren't supposed to be poking around in the MFT unless they really, really know what they are doing...)

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They forked this one up: Microsoft modifies open-source code, blows hole in Windows Defender

J. Cook
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Go

Re: That's the trouble with open source

Even the swedish chef.

bork bork bork.

(for those that don't get it: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Swedish_Chef)

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Six months on, and let's check in on those 'stuttering' Windows 10 PCs. Yep, still stuttering

J. Cook
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@ deconstructionist

Alternatively, google for "windows 10 decrapifier script", and it'll fix 90% of that stuff automagically.

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Symantec cert holdout sites told: Those Google Chrome warnings are not a good look

J. Cook
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I dunno, ghost wasn't all that bad, right up to 8.6 or 8.7 (which was the last version I used, anyway.) The multicasting setup was a bit of a pig to setup and run, but when it worked it was 'good enough'.

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US watchdog: Scam scammers scamming scammed in scam scam

J. Cook
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Not a new scam.

This has been around for a quite a few years, usually run by the same bottom-feeding scum bums that scammed the victims the first time around.

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Oracle sued over claims of shoddy service, licensing designed to force adoption of its kit

J. Cook
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Mushroom

Re: Why hasn't Oracle died yet?

Yep, and all the poor poor b@$tards that are stuck with using PeopleSoft, because moving to anything else costs at least six digits (and the first digit usually being a '2' or higher!) and is just as crap.

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Rant launches Eric Raymond's next project: open-source the UPS

J. Cook
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Re: Good luck, will be nice to see the third iteration

The problem with the idea of 'plug whatever damn battery pack you have handy' is that chargers are generally designed for a specific battery chemistry.

what's good for charging SLA batteries may not be suitable (or desirable!) for LiPO. What a LiPoFe4 stack would find usable would be unusable for an SLA, or NiCad, etc.

The 'multi-chemistry' chargers for tools? The charger and packs have circuitry that tells the charger what kind of battery was jammed into it, or the battery pack has a built in protection circuit to cope with whatever trash the charger throws at it. (At least that's my assumption- I'm quite probably waaay off.)

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J. Cook
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Re: UPSs lack the kind of sensor information that protected car batteries, Raymond wrote

Part of the problem with car batteries is that the alternators that *used* to be on cars could be counted on to provide enough current when running to actually *charge* the battery on top of running the engine; but now? not a chance. My PT cruiser ate it's battery without fail every 18 months, and with little to no warning- I'd go out and try to start it, and instead of cranking over, the dash gauges would just twitch.

at [RedactedCo], we use APC SmartUPS in the 2KVA range for some of our gear. they have the network management cards installed and they run us about $700 USD each. We have units still in use after five years on their original packs, which we are starting to replace out. (the part of the world I'm in gets stupid hot during summer, and the grid's not quite reliable)

the data centers are on Liebert APM/NX beasts (three phase, multi-rack) which while I don't know that exact cost on, have never let us down in the 5+ years we've had them. But then, we also keep maintenance up on them.

Overall, I think they are either trying to find a 'standard' design spec, or otherwise trying to reinvent the wheel, myself.

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Auto manufacturers are asleep at the wheel when it comes to security

J. Cook
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Trollface

I have a very easy solution for this problem. it requires that the driver's side door be openable using a physical key to access to hood latch, and a switch capable of coping with the amperage flowing from the battery.

Open door, pop hood latch.

open hood latch, power up car from battery switch.

close hood, get it, key in, start up, drive off.

when done:

park the car, turn engine off, pop hood latch.

lock and close doors,

turn car off via battery switch, close hood, walk away.

Only way it can be stolen is via a flatbed rollback, or getting the hood popped open and manually kicking the battery back on. (no easy task on some cars!)

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J. Cook
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I dunno- I'm quite a bit younger than that, and I remember that song, if only because my dear mother had the 'classics' radio station on that played it fairly often.

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Developer mistakenly deleted data - so thoroughly nobody could pin it on him!

J. Cook
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Re: Not me, but someone else previously in my team

@Phil W:

"Maybe he should also learn about the "Protect from accidental deletion" tick box."

I'm not quite sure when that little ticky box made it's first appearance; might have been server 2008R2. I honestly can't remember if it was in 2k3 or not; it's been quite some time since we had a 2k3 DC at [redactedCo] and frankly, I've slept since then. :D

That little ticky box sure is a life saver, though.

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Slack cuts ties to IRC and XMPP, cos they don't speak Emoji

J. Cook
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Re: Slack? IRC?

@ lIsa Loving: You are correct, Skype for Business *is* what Lync Server was renamed to- it's the same horrible, complicated underpinnings, it's absolutely *not* compatible with the consumer version of Skype, and it's a dumpster full of poo on fire.

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A ghoulish tale of pigs, devs and docs revived from the dead

J. Cook
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Pint

Re: Allways Educational!

... googling that was a *bad* idea.

I require vodka to get rid of that image.

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J. Cook
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Re: Lesson

Which is why we are stuck with windows 10 instead of a proper rev of windows 7.

*hides in the anti-nuc bunker*

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