* Posts by Tinslave_the_Barelegged

265 posts • joined 6 Aug 2016


We (may) now know the real reason for that IBM takeover. A distraction for Red Hat to axe KDE

Tinslave_the_Barelegged Silver badge

Re: Arggh no.

Don't tell me, Lennart Poeterring is involved with Wayland?

To paraphrase another turn of the wheel of history:

systemd ain't done until kde won't run

Microsoft has signed up to the Open Invention Network. We repeat. Microsoft has signed up to the OIN

Tinslave_the_Barelegged Silver badge


or Admiral Akbar Applies.

At times like this, look for giant fish in Admiral's uniform, giving a warning.

Hate to burst your Hubble: Science stops as boffins scramble to diagnose gyro problem

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Michigan State University astronomer Jay Strader tweeted rumours

Rumours about the gyroscopes, so NASA 's spin doctors got involved...

Punkt: A minimalist Android for the paranoid

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...for the sub headline. Made my day.

Oracle? On my server? I must have been hacked! *Penny drops* Oh sh-

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Early days of easy/cheap connectivity

Gosh those days seem so far away now. My biggest mental somersault was in the days when we happily paid £10 for a small sun box as a gateway/firewall, and another £10k per annum for "management", and then in the late 90s finding that a throwaway box running linux was just as, if not more, capable, and that maybe, just maybe, we'd been taken for a ride for some years. No wonder we all developed such cynicism. I remember so desperately trying to see the flaw in the reality when concluding that there really wasn't some special secret security sauce in the expensive version.

Decoding the Chinese Super Micro super spy-chip super-scandal: What do we know – and who is telling the truth?

Tinslave_the_Barelegged Silver badge

Re: 'None of the actors can be taken at face value

Query regarding embedding chips in the motherboard substrate. Is this even a part of the normal manufacturing process? If it isn't, we can probably discount that part of the story as hyperbole.

That's roughly what I was thinking. Embedding a physical device, no matter how small or how smart, is such absolute proof of where the attack was carried out that it seems far too clumsy, and far too likely to be found out.

Still, as others have pointed out, none of the actors in the story necessarily inspire one with confidence of truth, while all have something to gain from being manipulative.

But overall, this sounds more like the current equivalent of a Red under the Bed hysteria which seems so boringly cyclic in some parts of the world, the Chinese being the bogeyman-de-jour. Where's Arthur Miller when he's needed?

Google actually listens to users, hands back cookies and rethinks Chrome auto sign-in

Tinslave_the_Barelegged Silver badge

Re: Google still know everything about almost everyone, regardless of a switch.

Adblockers don't stop server-side analytics.

Maybe not, but I wonder what a combination of ublock origin and the EFF's Privacy Badger would do on the new slurpy chrome/chromium? It's possible to disallow cookies using Privacy Badger, and even block connections entirely, to say nothing of what's possible with a well crafted hosts file. One can see an extension to yoyo.org adserver blocks aimed at analytics overreahc, for example.

Tinslave_the_Barelegged Silver badge

Re: Google still know everything about almost everyone, regardless of a switch.

Basically, all our base are belong to Google already.

That may be true, but it is not inevitable that we the people, whether citizens or subjects, will roll over and accept this. To maintain some vestige of what it means to be human, we must continue to resist, making life as hard for data collectors as possible.

How an over-zealous yank took down the trading floor of a US bank

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Re: Unplugging the keyboard = kernel panic ?

I don't get why people think that is so stupid or funny.

Because when confronted with a message on a screen, people's understanding becomes astonishingly literal. The stupidity really isn't as one sided as it seems at all.

(I wonder how many have headed for the exits when seeing the lpd "printer on fire" message)

Tinslave_the_Barelegged Silver badge

Re: Unplugging the keyboard = kernel panic ?

Huh! Who remembers the early days of the 80286, which had the A20 gate in the keyboard, meaning one way of speeding up the machine was the replace the keyboard with a newer one.

Tinslave_the_Barelegged Silver badge

Re: DevOps?

It may not have been called "DevOps", but we most certainly used the same concepts and methods in the mid 90s. Of course, back then, buzzwords were real buzzwords....

The Reg chats with Voyager Imaging Team member Dr Garry E Hunt

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Perhaps they did have politicians.

Perhaps they were politicians


Microsoft: You don't want to use Edge? Are you sure? Really sure?

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Re: Links to resolutions, will work with any browser

I tried going to the openSUSE link but in true linux fashion it didn't work out the box and had to be tweaked before it would work.

Mea culpa, mea culpa ad comma.

Tinslave_the_Barelegged Silver badge

Links to resolutions, will work with any browser

Here are several sites which will resolve this problem for good:





Really, why do people put up with this nonsense? It's just not necessary.

2-bit punks' weak 40-bit crypto didn't help Tesla keyless fobs one bit

Tinslave_the_Barelegged Silver badge

Problem-solution dichotomy

This seems one of those things that can be rather annoying. What is so wrong with physical keys that a techgasm of adding layers of technology solves, but results in such poor implementations? I know that sounds merely Luddite, but really, surely by now we can at least look at things more empirically rather than tumble headlong along a path we have kidded ourselves is called "progress"?


Vodafone cops ads rap over Martin Freeman's vanishing spaceship

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I still think they are wasting their time trying to create a useful speed measure though.

But then advertisers should not such use a non-metric, which, if you are right, would then be wilfully misleading. A bit like when one has some problem on a support forum, and someone replies "works for me". Fascinating, but of no use whatsoever.

Give yourselves a pat on the back, top million websites, half of you now use HTTPS

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Re: Point me to site encryption instructions for the ...

... lazy and hopeless.

Sure - letsencrypt.org

I know, as for some reason I recognise the description.

Don't let Google dox me on Lumen Database, nameless man begs

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Is ABC...?

He's really "Disgusted of Tunbridge Wells", isn't he?

UK getting ready to go it alone on Galileo

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Re: That is going to be one hell of an expensive failure

Oh yeah, they built a new aircraft carrier, but forgot the catapults.

Don't forget the contract - the "£5billion" will balloon to £15 billion, which will have to change hands whether the system gets built or not. The satellites will end up in a shed in Basingstoke.

Tinslave_the_Barelegged Silver badge

Re: UK has the resources

Also a UK only system can be based on 3 x 3 satellites

Unfortunately, the UK military doesn't plan to restrict its bombing to the UK alone.

Tax the tech giants and ISPs until the bits squeak – Corbyn

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The Leader of Her Majesty’s Opposition

Wouldn't have known there was such a thing based on the amount of abstaining or rubber stamping the last two years have shown.

Redis has a license to kill: Open-source database maker takes some code proprietary

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Why can we not have mainstream journalism dealing with complex controversies as thorough as El Reg journalists produce? The range of responses garnered and the way they are presented is exemplary, especially as this issue will rear its head repeatedly over the next few years, and won't be closed down by a specific view.

Somerset boozer prepares to declare its inn-dependence from UK

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...A long time ago....

In the old South Africa, the Rotarians or Round Tablers in a Cape Town suburb had a similar fund-raising idea, and the Republic of Hout Bay came into being. This was made easier by the fact that, as Hout Bay is on the opposite side of Table Mountain to the city, there were (and maybe still are) only three roads into and out of the suburb. So they had "road blocks" at which you could but a "passport" that would make you a citizen.

Rumour had it at the time that people were successfully using these "passports" on trips away from South Africa, at a time when South African passports were regarded extremely dubiously, claiming that the Republic of Hout Bay was a breakaway dissident state.

Dropbox plans to drop encrypted Linux filesystems in November

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> Why would Dropbox want to do that?


Firefighters choke on Oracle's alleged smoke-and-mirrors cloud

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Software audits

I never did understand why the risk of software audits (remember the FAST wars?) did not kill proprietary software, as the risk to business is so high, not just financially, but reputation risks too. Perhaps it's because licence compliance sounds simple and benign, rather than the minefield and constantly moving target greed has made it.

Historical examples: I can certainly recall that the final and biggest reason for migrating from Netware to NT networking was the fact that the licence restrictions were non-existent in comparison with Novell's draconian rules. Also, we first started looking at Linux at a time when adding a single login to a Sequent Dynix ptx system costs thousands. Some infrastructure development needed at that time was nearly prevented by the cost of the development logins, so I did the research on Linux instead.

Batten down the ports: Linux networking bug SegmentSmack could remotely crash systems

Tinslave_the_Barelegged Silver badge

> (insert Windows cheap-shot here...)

No doubt the next silly acronym for a vulnerability will indeed be called CHEAP-shot or cheap-SHOT or maybe ChEAP-sHOT.

Grad sends warning to manager: Be nice to our kit and it'll be nice to you

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Hah! You'll be laughing on the other side of your paper cassette when the machine, sounding remarkably like Tony Hawks replies "Howdee Doodley do". It's not just the toasters, you know.

Drink this potion, Linux kernel, and tomorrow you'll wake up with a WireGuard VPN driver

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Re: good lord; is this not a techie site?

> The number of people who are confused

Must agree with the surprised title. Some really astonishing lack on understanding about how the linux kernel works, and the significance, or otherwise of a new project managing to get approval from the kernel developers. The nonsense about bloat and assumptions that being in the mainline meant wg would no longer be a module is so misplaced, one wonders whether trolls have pounced on this. Attempted comparisons of particular distros' kernel compilation choices and the kernel development process really read like FUD shill comments. So unlike ElReg commentards, who we expect and hope to be better informed.

Sitting pretty in IPv4 land? Look, you're gonna have to talk to IPv6 at some stage

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> dig AAAA theregister.co.uk

I think that would be a fair criticism if ElReg was a consultancy, but they're a news outlet. So it's legitimate to yell "FAKE ipv6 address!" but less legitimate to say "AAAA.news".

Sysadmin trained his offshore replacements, sat back, watched ex-employer's world burn

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Other side of the coin

I resigned from one job, on a 3 month notice period. They found a replacement within a month, and the usual "handover" discussion started. . Instead, I said to my boss "It's really not fair on the new guy if I'm hanging around al the time; it'll cramp his style terribly. How about I, you, know, not show up?" They fell for it and I had a couple of months of rather well paid garden tending, and my boss thought I was being rather kind.

Tinslave_the_Barelegged Silver badge

Re: Logic bombs are unprofessional

>Sorry, but that you were using your own personal licence

>to run business functions reflects worse on you, but reflects

> badly on them whether or not they throw you out.

As a generality, I'd agree with you, but some employment circumstances are utterly bizarre, and maintaining one's sanity does not always mean following ideal ways of working. There are some truly dreadful employers out there, and some truly knobheaded PHBs believing the world is something it is not. It may not always be possible to maintain one's own standards and remain sane if unfortunate enough to find your self in those straits.

Boss helped sysadmin take down horrible client with swift kick to the nether regions

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Re: Good luck!

> The bill read: "hit car with hammer: 5. Know where to hit: 95."

Some years back, the viscous coupled fan on my Landie froze, so I decided to replace it with an electric one. Removing the old fan seemed really hard. Some people spoke of having to buy a special tool, others that it could be done but only if you were a contortionist. I took it down to my local old-style garage, and asked f he could help. He said "Pull it in closer," and while i was doing that got an air line and a percussion attachment. He opened the bonnet, had a good look, aimed the tool carefully, and there was a short "PRRFT, and then he simply hand-spun the fan off the now-loosened bolt. As he closed the bonnet, I said to him "That took 10 seconds and 25 years." He smiled, understanding me perfectly.

He wouldn't charge me either.

Tinslave_the_Barelegged Silver badge

So long, Simon

...and thanks for all the fsssssssshhh of halon releases and power supply failures in these and other articles.

Declassified files reveal how pre-WW2 Brits smashed Russian crypto

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Re: More recent communications

Reading through my post above, apologise I must for allowing my inner Yoda to over-ride my typing fingers. Not try to brief, must in future be done.

Tinslave_the_Barelegged Silver badge

More recent communications

Not to do with Russia directly, but fascinating is an article on the ANC's web site describing how their operatives communicated in Apartheid South Africa. The use of computers in the 1980s, basic encryption, then modems to transfer audio to cassette tape. Then find a phone and switch on the tape, to send screeches down a phone line. Receiving was the reverse of the above. Relevant to the article is the process this involved. A great read.

"Talking To Vula"

The Story of the Secret Underground Communications Network of Operation Vula

by Tim Jenkin


Fukushima reactors lend exotic nuclear finish to California's wines

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New grape variety

Variation on pretentious wine snob: "Try the 2018 Californian Carpe Diem. The name means 'cesium the day', you know"

Beer icon, because it's always unadulterated. Oh hang on...

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Re: Grapes do not absorb much

> There were only two things which drove it off the scale.

> Cucumbers (specifically the peel) and forest mushrooms.

You mean mushrooms like this one? ------------------------>

Oldest swinger in town, Slackware, notches up a quarter of a century

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Re: 1994

It was 1995 or 6 for me. Also no CD, so at work, I gathered as many Compaq driver disks as I could find, cellotaped over the write-protect slot, and started copying. Back home, I stumbled my way through the installation, and eventually ended up with a big X on the screen. I didn't know you then had to run a window manager on top of X. I also remember running an MS-Windows machine against the Slackware machine, using a X server called mIx, or maybe MiX - can't recall exactly. The thrill of this achievement was wonderful - but as Linux matured and got easier to install, it's hard to be too nostalgic.

Tech support chap given no training or briefing before jobs, which is why he was arrested

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Re: Back in my day

> all you needed was screwdrivers, insulating tape and penknife

In the early years of the PC, the standard kit was a rubber eraser, a toothbrush and a bottle of methylated spirits. It was surprising what could be cured by removing the "daughterboard" cards, cleaning the contacts and replacing.

UK privacy watchdog to fine Facebook 18 mins of profit (£500,000) for Cambridge Analytica

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Something missing

Yes, these scumbag companies (The BBC report lists others) and their disturbing lack of ethics deserve to be held to account, but what about the political results of these activities? There appears to be complete silence about that. Is it simply that all political colours were up to their necks in this, so politics over the last 10 years was all about a financial arms race, or do we simply not have the leadership to draw any societal conclusions from these scummy activities?

Open plan offices flop – you talk less, IM more, if forced to flee a cubicle

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Re: Is it just me?

> The whole idea is driven by the thought that if you cram more people into a given space,

Don't forget the power politics in play, not just because those higher up in open-plan and cubicle environments tend to have offices, and can both insulate themselves from open plan reality and enjoy the power pleasure of inflicting it on others.

I worked at a company in the early 90s in an open-plan office. I left after a few years, and returned as a consultant a few years after that. After a meeting at my desk - they had those teardrop-shaped desk add-ons for small meetings - someone went to my boss to complain about my desk. He said as a consultant he was not sure I was entitled to the desk I had, which to my eye was identical to all the others. It turned out that for those above a certain level, the desks had a rounded edge, while minions had square-edged desks. I had known the place for 8 years and never noticed this trivial bit of status semiotics.

Boeing embraces Embraer to take off in regional jet market

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Re: Really?

> Horribly noisy little things

I flew Newcastle to Southampton once in a DASH 8. It must have had active noise cancelling because soon after take-off, everything went weirdly quiet. A few minutes before landing the noise started again. Whatever did it, it was certainly effective.

Tinslave_the_Barelegged Silver badge


"as does jet-powered replacements for routes currently served by turboprops."

Genuine question for Those Who Know - does that make sense? Turboprops for shortish (an hour or two) flights are not that much slower than jets, and surely use a lot less fuel. Is it just a fashion thing, or has all the technology and boffinry gone into full-fat jets recently?

Sysadmin cracked military PC’s security by reading the manual

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Re: Only cracking I have done is

I have a photo that reminds me how security works in the minds of many, and which illustrates this story perfectly. The picture is of a boat on a loch, secured by a large and imposing padlock one wouldn't dream of trying to pick. But above and below the padlock are two conventional shackles, easily removed with a pair of pliers, or maybe a bit of wire. Most people, except miscreants, concentrate on the padlock. So it's excellent security for keeping out people who wouldn't steal the boat anyway. Not sure whether links are acceptable on ElReg but the pic is here:- http://www.tinslave.co.uk/vrp/wp-content/uploads/2012/10/TinSlave-175624-05102012.jpg

Distie bosses tuck 7-figure settlement into Cisco's top pocket

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Re: We are Cisco, and you will capitulate.... b*tch

Worse - " the pair have given undertakings about future trading that extends to their relatives" Does the law allow one person to undertake to restrict a third party's activity? Could be that they are not allowed to coerce a third party, but it sounds as though the third party is being punished.

A fine vintage: Wine has run Microsoft Solitaire on Linux for 25 years

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Re: Virtualisation made it irrelevant

> virtualisation made Wine irrelevant for anyone wanting to do serious work with Windows

The last time I needed to use Wine in anger was with CIX's Ameol offline reader. To fire up a VM just for that would have been overkill, as well as requiring a windows licence. Even at that stage, with StarOffice, becoming freely available under Sun's ownership, there were fewer and fewer things needing windows, and hence less need for wine. (Need for beer remained at acceptable levels.)

However, I can confirm the article's comment of "since it will allow malware aimed at Microsoft's products to be run." After shutting down Ameol on one occasion I noticed a wine process still running, courtesy of something dirty going on in the Ameol conferences.

Tinslave_the_Barelegged Silver badge

> Or you just set up G Suite/Office 365 for offline access.

Had you suggested Collabora you might have understood the zeitgeist as well as the point of the article.

Micro Focus offloads Linux-wrangler SUSE for a cool $2.5bn

Tinslave_the_Barelegged Silver badge

Re: Swelling price tag, if not profits

> tempted to try Suse out again occasionally.

OpenSUSE is probably your friend, then. It's already been announced that the newly independent SUSE will continue to support the community version, which remains free-as-in-beer. The OpenSUSE chair confirmed on a list this morning:- "Nils Brauckmann (CEO of SUSE) personally called me this morning to assure me this news will have no negative impacts on openSUSE."

Quite a relief, as I run OpenSUSE on quite a few systems, and it has been amazingly solid. Upgrades are a joy. There was a lot to learn for one coming from a preference for Debian and Debian-style systems, but these days it seems harder to go back. It feels more unix-y somehow. I assume this is because OpenSUSE backs directly into what will become the paid-for mainframe-powering full fat SUSE.

We used to run SuSE (as it was capitalised in those days) on most servers, and had bookcases of the full box sets as each new version arrived. We came to the conclusion that, from 5.3, the odd point-numbered versions were great, but the even numbered and point-zero versions were best avoided. Then Ubuntu came along and changed the game for the better, especially when we didn't really need to run a "certified" OS. I came to prefer Ubuntu as a desktop OS, but came back to OpenSUSE around 12.1, probably out of nostalgia. What I found was remarkable quality and a satisfying experience.

I wish them well as independents under new owners.

Tinslave_the_Barelegged Silver badge

Re: Underpant Gnomes

> 1. Sell software available free elsewhere

I think in SUSE's case, what they sell is not so much the software, but the certainty that it runs on extremely big iron.

Sysadmin shut down server, it went ‘Clunk!’ but the app kept running

Tinslave_the_Barelegged Silver badge

Re: Label, Label Label

Oh sure, like one place where the labelling of the underfloor wiring was dodgy, so they decided to put the labels on the ceiling tiles. Great idea, until one weekend the aircon guys had to come in and do work, collected all the ceiling tiles into a pile and at the end of the job restored them, not, as the saying goes, necessarily in the correct order.


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