* Posts by anthonyhegedus

473 posts • joined 9 Feb 2016


Use an 8-char Windows NTLM password? Don't. Every single one can be cracked in under 2.5hrs

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

All very well but why does one of the most commonly used cloud services, office 365, limit passwords to just 16 characters? Barely enough for two short words and a number. Correcthorsebatt.

It’s not good enough.

And why are the default system-generated passwords on office 365 of the format 3 letters plus 5 numbers with the first letter always being upper case?

Hold horror stories: Chief, we've got a f*cking idiot on line 1. Oh, you heard all that

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

I have a friend who was getting rather fed up with his job as tech support at a London computer shop in the mid 80s. The final straw came after someone sent him a floppy disk with a note stapled to it. He resolved to leave as soon as possible. The next customer who rang said he was having trouble with the sprocket holes aligning in his printer and could the procedure for putting paper in be explained to him. So my friend tried to explain but the person on the end of the phone was getting more and more irate with him. My friend just gave up shouted down the phone: “why don’t you work it out for yourself you ignorant cunt?”. He was fired pretty quickly after that.

Defaulting to legacy Internet Explorer just to keep that one, weird app working? Knock it off

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

One of the problems I’ve noticed is the number of Microsoft programs which just reference IE settings and possibly the browser. For example when trying to activate office from inside an office app, it uses IE for the login page (you don’t see IE actually load).

I’ve seen other Microsoft apps just start IE no matter what the default browser is set as.

Treaty of Roam: No-deal Brexit mobile bill shock

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

I’m lost. Who exactly is it who wants to allow mobile companies to charge the outrageously out of proportion roaming charges? It might benefit the mobile companies but is that really so important that legislation gets made right now in preparation for this?

Crypto exchange in court: It owes $190m to netizens after founder 'dies without telling anyone vault passwords'

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

That and the fact that it’s just slurped up 10MWh of energy

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

Just goes to show that the principal type of actor around bitcoins is a criminal. Bitcoins are either used for scamming people, extortion, money-laundering or in this case, running a dodgy outfit and running off with the money. I'm afraid I'm going to have to shout again, like I've posted several times before, to numerous thumbs-up: THERE IS NO KNOWN LEGITIMATE REAL-WORLD APPLICATION FOR BITCOINS OR OTHER CRYPTOCURRENCY!!!

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

I still don't understand how he had millions of real dollars in real bank accounts that are now not accessible. Pretty poor excuse for a bank account if that's true. The whole thing sounds like a load of old tosh to me. And regarding the actual bitcoins, what complete idiot stores their money with a company and doesn't do any due diligence to find out how safe their bitcoins really are?

Not cool, man: Dixons spanked over discount on luxury 'smart' fridge with wildly fluctuating price

anthonyhegedus Silver badge


DFS are having a sale? Who knew?!

El Reg talks to PornHub sister biz AgeID – and an indie pornographer – about age verification

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

People will go the path of least resistance (not necessarily the path of least cost). The path of least resistance is a VPN. Nobody gets a copy of your passport, your spouse is less likely to find that "new email address just used for testing" and everyone's happy. This age ID thing needs to be global really, but that'll hurt income too much.

By "people" I do mean those both permitted and not permitted to view the stuff.

I can hear the light! Boffins beam audio into ears with freakin' lasers

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

There’ll only be two use cases for this:

1. Listen to soothing music through your skin whilst being tatooed by a giant laser or having your earwax hygienically vapourised.

2. Adverts. These ads will also know if you’ve been listening by detecting subtle changes in body temperature and pulse. If you haven’t been listening, the advert is repeated incessantly until you have. Or until you agree to buy whatever it is that’s being advertised monthly.

'Nun' drops goat head on pavement outside Cheltenham 'Spoons

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

Perhaps she misunderstood 'holy ghost'

RIP 2019-2019: The first plant to grow on the Moon? Yeah, it's dead already, Chinese admit

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

So now that it's dead, does it go out with the food waste or the garden waste, or just put it in a black sack?

Goddamn the Pusher man: Nominet kicks out domain name hijack bid

anthonyhegedus Silver badge


First thing I tried was that with dotcom on the end. Good example to show our customers how not to browse the internet.

Begone, Demon Internet: Vodafone to shutter old-school pioneer ISP

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

Re: It's downvotes all the way, er.... down

Awarded a downvote just to prove your point. You deserve an upvote for that.

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

I used Demon when they only had 8 or 16 modems! I 'owned' bigbear.demon.co.uk until someone pointed out to me that that might be misconstrued among the gay community. Started with KA9Q and a really ancient Toshiba laptop from 1987 or something that had a 2400 baud modem. In those days, services ran on ka9q that were open to the internet. I remember there was a way of sending a message to an IP address that would appear if they used KA9Q. We all had fixed IP addresses in those days and I remember trying to send a message to my boss (shark.demon.co.uk) and something went wrong with ka9q and locked up his session. It kept his phone line up all night, which pissed him off as he got a large bill for an 8-hour phone call that month!

All I could do was email other people and of course I didn't know anyone with an email address, or chat on the newsgroups - uk.telecom was my favourite. Those were the days...

Smartphones gateway drug to the Antichrist, says leader of Russian Orthodox Church

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

I used to work for an (American) company in London and we needed some more phone numbers. At the time, it was the 0171 area code (since deprecated), and the telecom company we were using offered us a range of numbers on the 0171 666 exchange. I didn't bat an eyelid, but my boss (who was American) said absolutely not, because it may upset god-fearing Americans. Apparently, there was a phone number in our NYC office that ended in 666 and someone tried to sue the company!

I was unable to comprehend the problem, because I was a logical and rational person and I could not believe that there were people out there who would actually care about this sort of thing. Apparently it wasn't the New Yorkers who were the problem, it was some of the people in other, more central US states that would have been the ones who'd get upset.

We didn't get the 666 numbers in the end, we chose a less satanic three-digit code.

Thought Macbooks were expensive? Dell UK unveils the 7 meeeellion pound laptop

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

Is it a mistake?

Excuse me, sir. You can't store your things there. Those 7 gigabytes are reserved for Windows 10

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

A customer of ours just bought one of those crappy £130-odd windows things (this one was a lenovo) ostensibly to use at work. It wouldn't let him install anything (because it only lets you install things from MS's "store"). So no remote support, no antivirus, no browser (apart from Edge). And because it only has a 32Gb storage, there was no room to put their files on. I just ended up telling him it's of no use for business.

AT&T (sucks) upgrades folks to 5G (Evolution) that isn't actually 5G

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

It's like the broadband providers in the UK marketing "Fibre" when what they really mean is "Copper" (or aluminium). I can't help thinking that it lessens the impetus to go to real full FTTP, which sits nicely with the fact that <5% of the country is actually wired up to actual, real, fibre.

I'm just not sure the computer works here – the energy is all wrong

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

Vibrating platform thing

My wife has a vibrating thing.

It's a sort of platform you stand on and it has a rather larger motor which causes the plate/platform to jiggle about at different speeds. It's supposed to help you gain/lose weight as far as I know.

Until I installed a small UPS on our broadband router (which was in another room), every time she turned on the machine, the VDSL connection would go out of sync, or in some cases, the router would crash and lock up. Also, terrestrial TV stopped working in our house.

Since then we've moved house, and the problem's gone away. It could be something to do with the fact that the vibrating machine is still in pieces after the move and not plugged in.

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

Re: Ah, the carefree days of yore

"At least the V10 is fit for purpose, unlike the earlier models which were useless and astoundingly expensive."

- not mine. I bought my D**** DC25 "Animal" hoover for £10 off gumtree. Took the thing apart, cleaned it, put it back together and I can honestly say it's the best hooving device I've ever bought!

All that was missing was the stair tool. I picked up one of those for nothing at a charity shop who oddly, refused to take any money for it.

More nodding dogs green-light terrible UK.gov pr0n age verification plans

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

Scammers will have a field day. The day after Pr0nDay, when some website or other is hacked, they'll be able to send out spam "we got your name, password, a photo of your passport and a list of pornsites you've been to".

This is just more personal and potentially dangerous information if it were to get into the wrong hands, which it will.

Then there's the risk of websites which say "download this utility to get around the porn-block". The list goes on. What the government is doing is just the wrong solution to the wrong problem.

Can't unlock an Android phone? No problem, just take a Skype call: App allows passcode bypass

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

Skype would need access to contacts and photos BEFORE authentication to display the contact details of the incoming Skype call. It’s access to the rest of the Skype app that should be blocked.

Insiders! The good news: Windows 10 Sandbox is here for testing. Bad news: Microsoft has already broken it

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

Windows wouldn't be Windows if stuff worked as it should, even in a beta test.

Millennium Buggery: When things that shouldn't be shut down, shut down

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

This isn't related to shutting everything down, but it is related to religiously following instructions. This happened in about 2008 - a customer of ours had some particularly tech-phobic staff and we got a call one morning from one of them saying that her email had "disappeared". She couldn't find the remote support icon either. I tried to talk her through starting Outlook, and she said it just says something about setting up your email account. They were local so I drove out to have a look. Sure enough, everything was wiped off their computer, and it looked like it had been factory reset.

I asked the lady what happened when she started up the computer in the morning. "Oh, nothing special" was the reply, "just the usual stuff when it starts". Then she added, "I did what it said". I began to get suspicious. I went through the startup procedure with her. The screen flashed up its usual "Press F11 for recovery" screen, and she interrupted "Yes, so I hit F11". I asked why and she said, "because it said to press F11". I pressed F11 it to see what it does. It came up with a screen asking if you want to continue with recovery to factory settings and to press Y to proceed with that. She said, "Oh yes, it told me to press Y so I did".

And so she actually told the computer to wipe its settings and data (even though it warned her that all data would be lost!) because "I thought that's what it wanted me to do. It said to press Y to wipe all my data".

I asked her if it had occurred to her that she shouldn't wipe everything, and all she had to say was that it shouldn't have told her to press F11 in the first place.

She left the job shortly after that and the company folded a few months later.

Godmother of word processing Evelyn Berezin dies at 93

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

Saw it the other day, on an office365 installation. I thought I'd seen the last of it too.... But microsoft is the gift that keeps on giving :-)

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

Templates? I wonder if it kept trying to get you to rename 'normal.dot' every time it booted.

The fastest, most secure browser? Microsoft Edge apparently

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

Isn't Edge the Chrome bootstrapper? Can it browse to other sites too?

Total Inability To Support User Phones: O2 fries, burning data for 32 million Brits

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

OK so now their status reads:

"The network issue continues to be a top priority for us and we apologise to all our customers impacted by this.

Earlier today we suspended any planned works or updates across our systems and network. This allowed hundreds of people from both our technical teams and our third-party supplier’s teams to focus on fixing the problem, helping us to restore data services as quickly as we can which will also help reduce the high network demand we’re currently seeing for voice calls."

Hundreds of technical people? Doesn't smack of a software problem, or at least not a simple one. It sounds like a problem that requires a lot of manpower, like manually adjusting settings at thousands of different sites.

Today lots of things are going down for me and people I know, and we've actually had customers phone up and ask if it was due to the O2 problem!

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

I love the way they immediately set the “blame path” to “third party suppliers” and then try to disperse the pain and further divert the blame by saying that other networks are affected throughout the world.

Then they advise you to use WiFi.

Why not show a bit of humility and have the outage posted front and centre on their main web page?

Anyway I’m surprised they haven’t blamed brexit!

Microsoft polishes up Chromium as EdgeHTML peers into the abyss

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

Yes, XP, which was better at running viruses than actual software

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

Re: "Oh shit I just hit back space and actually went back a page"

So you make your browser pander to the tiny proportion of people who don't use a mouse, rather than the majority of people who don't want the backspace button to delete the last character typed?

He's not cracked RSA-1024 encryption, he's a very naughty Belarusian ransomware middleman

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

I think the point is that the company describes itself as being able to decrypt files. It would probably be just as successful if they explained that they're the middleman and will deal with the blackmailer on your behalf, and then come and make a site visit and get your files back. Yes, it saves all that horrible bitcoin nonsense from affecting the victim. It's a good idea from that standpoint. You pay £1000 for doing it yourself our £2000 for someone to do it for you.

As to whether it's a good idea in the big scheme of things, that's a different matter.

Blockchain study finds 0.00% success rate and vendors don't call back when asked for evidence

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

Blockchain has only one true application, and that's enabling cryptocurrencies. And cryptocurrencies have only one application, and that's criminal money-collection and laundering. Unless you count 'being a hobby for millennials' as an application.

The blockchain is a brilliant way to run a database where transactions take up megawatt-hours of energy, and the whole thing isn't centralised. The whole concept is tarnished by the twattishness that surrounds it - from the weird Japanese does-he-doesn't-he exist inventor, to the fact that mainly criminals seem to benefit from it.

Seeing as Bitcoin is going so, so well, Ohio becomes first US state to take biz taxes in BTC

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

What a stupid idea

Bitcoins are really wasteful. How many megawatt-hours does it take to process a bitcoin transaction these days? They're wildly fluctuating in value and fiendishly difficult to use, and very expensive to convert.

The only purpose for bitcoins is scamming, money laundering and basically any criminal activity. They have no real-world applications other than that, because all other 'applications' are just a hobby.

Office 365 Exchange enjoys a less than manic Monday. Users? Not so much

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

We used our remote support system to message a hundred or so users. A message just flashed up on their screen. But if we didn't have that, how are you supposed to communicate to your customers that a service provided through you is hosed?

Shocker: UK smart meter rollout is crap, late and £500m over budget

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

Re: Home security problem

"Wake me up when these things have a householder option to delay the sending of usage by a fortnight."

All it'll take is a cash-strapped sysadmin to check who hasn't sent it a usage report for a while.

If Shadow Home Sec Diane Abbott can be reeled in by phishers, truly no one is safe

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

What am I missing?

She said she was initially taken in. She doesn’t say she let somebody remotely control her computer. A lot of people could be very easily initially taken in when the phone call starts and then within 10 seconds realise that it’s a scam. This is a non-story about Diane Abbott and the usual tropes about her not being able to think clearly. I may not agree with a lot of her policies (or indeed most of them), but this really is bashing her for no reason.

Heart Internet stops beating, starts Monday with big portion of FAIL

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

Re: Interesting...

@Nigey absolutely with you on that one. ICUK rarely have downtime and when they do they remember to put honest, up to date, relevant and timely messages on their status page, and they don't delete them five minutes after the problem's fixed.

Only thing is they don't do hosted exchange, but not a biggy.

They're a very good reseller provider.

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

It is when you've got 100 microsoft exchange users, half of them remote users.

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

I'm the one who wrote '"This shower of a hosting company have had at least one long outage a month every month for the last year,"' - it's now 1115 and we haven't had an update for almost two hours!

Seagate HAMRs out a roadmap for future hard drive recording tech

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

Should be large enough to hold drivers for more than one Hewlett-Packard printer then!

BT, beware: Cityfibre reveals plan to shovel £2.5bn under Britain's rural streets

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

Loads of people have fibre though

There are posters on the street cabinets saying fibre is here, and BT, Sky and talk talk are advertising fibre broadband. I don’t see what the fuss is about

Facetious mode off.

Memo to Microsoft: Windows 10 is broken, and the fixes can't wait

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

The reason it worked with bing is that nobody in their right mind uses bing.

But seriously, the thing that gets me how can the company be so arrogant as to reduce the number of testers and QA staff? It really beggars belief!

Zip it! 3 more reasons to be glad you didn't jump on Windows 10 1809

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

Windows updates - now with extra pain. Windows updating at the start of a presentation not annoying enough? Don't worry, we've got that covered! If your computer ever finishes its update, you can be sure of hundreds of new bugs in things you just assumed worked.

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

It is a bit of a disgrace. How do they manage to introduce new bugs into something that's been in windows as long as zip file handling? For a problem to have appeared there, there must have been a change. What was the change that caused that problem?

Windows has always been known for its propensity to dick people around. Microsoft is now getting a reputation for making over-complicated, hard to use and unreliable software. The biggest gripe of all is the updates.

Chinese biz baron wants to shove his artificial moon where the sun doesn't shine – literally

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

It would be far more profitable if the beam could be accurately focused onto small areas, like 1 square metre or less. Then they could hire it out to governments, superpowers, assassins, terrorist groups etc. I'd say that would make far more money than just saving a large city's leccy bill.

Leaked memo: No internet until you clean your bathroom, Ecuador told Julian Assange

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

It's no good without genuine pictures of his cat.

Microsoft deletes deleterious file deletion bug from Windows 10 October 2018 Update

anthonyhegedus Silver badge


It's a quality assurance problem. When writing code that deletes user files (due to age, being in the wrong place, whatever), the code needs to go through some extra quality assurance. I'm sorry Microsoft but if we aren't told that there is extra quality assurance that occurs when this sort of code is written, we can't trust your code. It's just not an option. They need to get this done and reassure us.

How they do this is really not our concern, they're the company we are all trusting with our computers. Sorry, I mean 'the computers that we are allowed to use by the grace of microsoft'.

Microsoft yanks the document-destroying Windows 10 October 2018 Update

anthonyhegedus Silver badge

Surely a company the size and might of Microsoft would have the manpower to have worked out what the hell caused this almighty clusterfuck by now?

They should publish what it was that went wrong ASAP so that competent technicians (i.e. not Microsoft support) can fix it themselves.

I bet the scammers will have produced a web page saying "call this toll free number to recover your files after bad update lost them" before Microsoft admit to and publish whatever the hell went wrong.


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