"Oh look, another DevOps article."
And camouflaged. The editors are realising that if they make it too obvious in the title we'll just ignore it.
16426 posts • joined 16 Jun 2014
"Or go direct to an apparently legitimate free download"
That's the 1st edition. There was a second edition that celebrated the 20th anniversary of publication. THAT was published in 1995. The original is over 40 years old and we're lumbered with manglements who still don't get it.
My point was that these different approaches have different strengths an weaknesses. Windows, as you say, has been trapped in an ancient past and is, in consequence, somewhat inflexible.
The Unix approach creates a unified file hierarchy out of as many disk partitions as the installer deems necessary or has available. My example was an instance of that - you can do a clean reinstall or upgrade of a Unix system and still preserve the users' home directories in /home, locally installed S/W in /opt etc provided you gave the matter a little thought when you did the initial install. OK, your can back up C:\Users and restore it later if you try to do the same thing in Windows but at best it's an extra step and at worst a real pain if your OS is so hosed you can't boot.
On the other hand rm -rf * when you're in / or rm -rf / is indeed dangerous IF you're working with root privileges. But it's a consequence of the flexibility that the single hierarchy brings. And there's always rmdir which by default will only let you delete a single, empty directory or rm -i which interrogates you before deleting anything or even rm -r without the -f flag.
By the way a mistyped mv when you're at or near / can also be drastic. rm -rf is the one thing you're warned about from pretty well the first day you learn anything about administering Unix-like systems but mv not so much. It's the one thing to have caught me out with a typo in >30 years.
After those >30 years of dealing with Unix and Unix-like systems I have a distinct preference for their flexibility and elegance; those drive letters just seem so clunky in comparison.
"Well I suggest one of the advantages of the drive letter paradigm, if used correctly, is that it can set a scope limit on commands. Which when you are dealing with non-IT expert users can be useful..."
You have C:\USERS. Now reformat the C: drive to reinstall the operating system.
You have user directories in a separate file system mounted on /home. Now reformat the root file system to reinstall the operating system.
Which works for you?
"The "rm -rf /" is an issue since Unix was conceived over forty years ago, so why is anyone surprised?"
It's not an issue. It's a fact of Unix life. If you want to rm -rf / why shouldn't you? You simply should be aware of the consequences in exactly the same way as you should be aware of the consequences of formatting your C: drive.
OTOH firmware designers who make variables accessible to the OS should make their firmware sufficiently robust as to default to sensible options if the user, via the OS, does something nasty to them. And being bricked is not a sensible option. In this case it seems that the OS will have to be modified to protect mobos with less than sufficiently UEFI firmware.
"Are we talking about a situation where the files are actually in the mobo bios, and Linux is making pointers to them"
No. The kernel has access to the mobo hardware and presents them to applications (including rm) through the same mechanism (the same semantics if you want to get technical) as files. Unix lookalikes do this for any hardware resource.
The other thing to realise here is the Unix concept of mounting file systems. The root file system is a disk partition mounted on virtual mount point /. If you have any another disk partitions containing another file system such as your home directories you will need to provide a mount point for it. In the case of your home directory collection you will normally create a directory called home under the top level of your root file system. This is /home. You will then mount your home file system there so it appears as /home. The overall file system thus appears as a set of directories and their files nested within each other and a command such as rf -r will navigate it as a whole. Nevertheless it is still a number of individual disk partitions, each formatted as a separate file system mounted one on another.
The file system-aware tools such as rm are not aware of the underlying partitions. Conversely formatting software is aware of the partitions but not of the mounting arrangements. If you were to re-format your root partition it would not touch your home partition which would simply loose its mount point until you made a new /home directory on the new root partition. This, by the way, is why it's a good idea to set up a Unix-like system with a separate /home file system - you can reinstall the operating system without losing user's data.
Remember that I said hardware resources are made available by the kernel through file system semantics. We need a "file system" where they can be placed. Traditionally this is done through /dev. A virtual file system is mounted on the /dev mount point. Disks, disk partitions, keyboard etc will be "files" here. But such virtual file systems are the manifestation of specific kernel functions and not physical formattable disks they can't be reformatted. More recently kernel resources have also made available through file semantics via another virtual file system under the /sys mount point.
Just as real file systems are not touched by formatting the partition with these mount points neither are the physical items, including the mobo resources, if the root file system is reformatted although, of course, they won't reappear on the reformatted partition until there's a running kernel in place. But just as real files are accessible by file-aware commands, so are the virtual files. And in this particular case the file system semantics offered by the kernel included deletion of what shouldn't have been deleted.
"You're forgetting that Call-Me-Dave is one of her best mates."
Irrelevant. The problem is that nobody in the media is prepared to go for the jugular. She shouldn't have been able to get through that first morning's media interviews without every single one challenging her on the point that she was CEO yesterday and is still CEO this morning. Especially with the recent precedent of the CEO of VW having quit: "Baroness Harding, Herr Winterkorn did the honourable thing. Why haven't you?"
It's at times like this that Robin Day is so sorely missed.
"a final/average salary pension"
Don't be fooled by this. There are two factors. One is the rate at which the pension accumulates (1/180ths Civil Service vs 1/60ths industry) and salary. Consequently my Civil Service pension is a good deal smaller than my industry pension even though it covers slightly more years worth of service.
"Second biggest change is even fewer system problems."
You keep saying things like this. Have you taken note of even one of the posts here where an upgrade has failed or applications have broken?
Nor have you addressed the spyware aspects.
Nor the "I want to update and I want to update NOW" syndrome (I recently saw someone trying to give a demo of some S/W on his laptop. He switched on & the thing promptly started to install upgrades and then insisted, in typical Windows fashion, on a reboot).
As a consequence your posts lack credibility.
"Also, quite a few of the newer copycat variants of cryptowall have had serious flaws."
The authors of TeslaCrypt 3, which hit my cousin, has learned from the security analysts' work on 1 & 2 and it's new so maybe this is the zero day. So far there isn't a key recovery mechanism AFAICS but I think I've got back most if not all of my cousin's files.
"EC officials are obliged to make sure the ECJ's concerns are dealt with adequately. Diplomatic fudges and creative ambiguity are in limited supply. In addition, a failure to reach agreement would disproportionately impact US businesses such as Facebook and Google, putting US negotiators in a tough spot."
As one of Nixon's henchmen said, when you have them by the balls their hearts and minds will follow.
It's all getting very interesting.
"The point is the corporation tax is levied in the economic activity where its profits happen...we have 17,000 software engineers in California...The company has 2,300 employees in the UK"
So divide up the profits according to the number of employees in each country and apply the countries' relevant tax rates to each portion.
"Well given the context of this bill is supposed to be about ALL communications, not just those across the Internet, what an ICR is and contains is also dependent upon the communications medium used."
If you communicate via carrier pigeon then, RFCs 1149 & 2549 notwithstanding, there wouldn't be any ICR so they'd have to rely on any other provisions of the bill that might apply. Ditto if you communicate by telephone.
An ICR only applies to internet communications. There are plenty of serious objections to this bill without going off-piste looking for others.
"Nothing about protecting the privacy of the 99.9% of the population that has no reason to be spied upon."
The article carefully explains that that is the remit of another committee:
the inquiry assessed it only in terms of its feasibility and cost, rather than whether its legal powers were proportionate to the threats they were intended to address. That second assessment is being made by the Joint Committee on the Draft Investigatory Powers Bill which is likely to publish its report within the next fortnight.
"And to think that they actually have the brass neck to say that we should foot the bill for all this stupidity!"
That is actually a good move. If the cost was hidden by being pushed onto the ISPs we'd still be paying but through ISP charges. If it were public expenditure it would be subject to Treasury approval when it runs over their stupid estimate & scrutiny from the PAC & NAO.
"It's all going to be taxpayer's money no matter which budget it comes from"
I think John Brown's point is valid. If it's heaped on ISPs it's hidden, HMG doesn't have to justify the amount & they'll claim the fact it was 8x over estimate as the ISPs' incompetence. If it's a matter of public record they'll have to justify it and it becomes much harder for them to hide the real cost. Even better, if they stick to their estimate of cost and then have to fund it directly the Treasury has the chance to turn down extra funds whist the PAC & NAO have a chance to give them a good kicking.
"Modern switching supplies"
There was a time before modern switching supplies were used. We had to make do with mains transformers, rectifiers & big electrolytics. And BTW big electros intended to sit upright with wires connected to their terminals don't necessarily take kindly to being mounted upside down on motherboards supported only by the terminals.
I've seen a Z8000 server sitting in a room next to the lift being reset by its neighbour. Also a Z80 (the one with the humungous upside down caps) being reset when the stabilised xenon microscope illuminator was fired up.
Interesting point. I'm not familiar with the arcane workings of what appears to be a dual system of jurisprudence.
On the one hand it might simply be enough to frighten off the troll to try someone easier, rather like the troll who backed off when they realised their target was a subsidiary of Newegg.
However there may be something to get a wedge into. For instance if someone were to announce publicly that so-and-so is infringing my patent there could be a possibility of bringing a civil case for libel which, I assume, isn't a federal case. I'm not suggesting that this is how they plan to work it but the linked article indicates something vaguely similar, namely acting on the troll's letter so it could be an offence analogous to demanding money with menaces.
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