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Comment: Re:geek or not ~ pfSense (Score 1) 238

Yup, pfSense is Good Stuff. On the hardware side it'll run on damn near anything. I run mine on an old Celeron machine with traffic shaping, no issues. I don't know that I'd want more than one or two simultaneous VPN users with that compute capacity, though.

Comment: Re:One Sure Way (Score 1) 275

by Anonymous Psychopath (#47884273) Attached to: California Tells Businesses: Stop Trying To Ban Consumer Reviews

Review sites like Yelp and the sort will throw up every roadblock at any attempt by any court to de-anonymize a user.

Courts don't like being messed with. They try that a few times, and they'll eventually get smacked-down, hard.

In short, it's impossible to identify a poster


Identifying and prosecuting are two different things. The former can be impractical, the latter can be impossible.

First, the company damaged carries the legal and financial burden of just bringing suit. That probably involves hiring an attorney and possibly a detective. Small companies will often not have those capabilities.

Then, assuming they can find them, they have to serve the offender. Good luck getting that done in Mumbai.

Then, assuming the offender don't show up to defend themselves and you win your case, you have to collect on the damages. Again, good luck with that.

Comment: Re:One Sure Way (Score 2) 275

by Anonymous Psychopath (#47876247) Attached to: California Tells Businesses: Stop Trying To Ban Consumer Reviews

There is one sure way to reduce negative reviews: Make sure your product and/or service is good quality.

It's the best way, but not a sure way. Unscrupulous companies will sometimes engage in reverse-astroturfing, where they hire a bunch of folks to post bad reviews of their competitors.

Comment: Re:So what exactly is the market here. (Score 1) 730

by Anonymous Psychopath (#47865037) Attached to: Apple Announces Smartwatch, Bigger iPhones, Mobile Payments

A gigantic set of the population is no longer even used to the concept of wearing a watch, because they have their phone. This device doesn't replace their phone. What exactly is the reason to have this as well, as opposed to pulling your phone out of your pocket?

Unless some company comes up with a functionally independent wearable device that replaces the need for keeping your phone with you I do not see the appeal. I don't understand what the pitch is supposed to even be. Literally every functionality can be responded to with "but i have my phone right here, it also does that and better"

I didn't think there was a market for a full-screen touchphone or a giant tablet either. Obviously I should not go into product marketing because I don't know shit about what people want, but Apple seems to have it figured out pretty well.

Comment: Re:Stored in cleartext? (Score 3, Interesting) 126

by Anonymous Psychopath (#47615493) Attached to: Alleged Massive Account and Password Seizure By Russian Group

How was this even possible? Passwords should NEVER be something you can steal since they shouldn't actually be stored as clear text (or even encrypted, for that matter).

Hasn't it been common practice, for at least a decade, to store the passwords as a salted hash (using a unique salt for each user)?

You shouldn't be able to steal a password since the site shouldn't have it.

It probably is hashes and not passwords. If they were the actual passwords, they'd be using them themselves instead of trying to sell them.

Comment: Re:Alternative explanation (Score 1) 398

Thats how the internet is paid for. The sending provider pays the receiving provider for the bandwidth, and this is the only rational way it can be.

No. That is not how it works. The truth is that the smaller provider pays the larger provider, no matter which direction the traffic flows. Some companies, like Netflix, are nice enough to not use their size as an excuse to charge people -- they offer free peering at internet exchanges. Other companies are maximally greedy.

That's not how it works, either. A peering arrangement is an interconnection between two providers in which neither pays the other for traffic. Verizon would like to change this model and receive payment.

Comment: Re:Alternative explanation (Score 1) 398

They are the entity in this arrangement that has actively encouraged assymetric use of the net by offering assymeteric service.

This is half true. Verizon is selling asymmetric services (although they are changing most FiOS plans to symmetric).

What is not true is that asymmetric connections encourages asymmetric usage. It's the other way around, and has been since the days of dialup.

Comment: Re:Alternative explanation (Score 2) 398

It's not just Level3 (not Layer 3), it's also Alternet and possibly others. Peering has gotten tough. It's supposed to be hey, let's connect our stuff together because I want to send you a bunch of stuff and you want to send me a bunch of stuff and we both win. The Internet has evolved and that has resulted in asymmetric traffic flows where one party carries more (sometimes far more) of the burden than the other, but the cost models have remained the same.

In Verizon's mind, they receive no benefit from increasing peering capacity in cases where they receive far more traffic than they can send. They forgot one thing, though; their residential customers. They are the ones who need the additional capacity, and without it their service will continue to degrade.

Comment: Re:Could be a different route involved for the VPN (Score 4, Informative) 398

It is also possible the the VPN packets are transiting a different upstream peer from Verizon and bypassing the peering bottleneck at issue. Assuming that Verizon is performing inspection of packets and throttling only Netflix packets is quite a leap.

This is exactly what's happening. I do the same thing for a specific server I use. Standard routing via FiOS results in consistent 1mb download speeds. I set up a GRE tunnel to my VPS host and I get consistent 10mb download speeds. The culprit appears to be a shitty peering connection between ( and 0.ae2.XL3.CHI13.ALTER.NET (

Comment: Re:Is this an achievement? (Score 1) 47

by Anonymous Psychopath (#47517271) Attached to: Autonomous Sea-Robot Survives Massive Typhoon

No, it doesn't impress me but for different reasons.

Surviving a typhoon on the surface is none trivial for any vessel of any size. Waves are no fun at all during a storm of that size. I think you underestimate how well the equipment in the steel container would have to be hardened. Its not unusual to suddenly fall a hundred feet or more, only to smack into water which is rapidly raising as you run into it. Imagine repeatedly being dropped from 100 feet or more into a pool for hours on end. Thats what being in a hurricane is like. Unless you're an experience engineer, I doubt you'd make something that survived without several tries.

On the other hand, for a submersible? Meh, not impressive. Dive below and it gets calm fairly quickly. The surface waves of a storm like that don't have that great of an effect on the ocean bottom at sufficient depth. The direct effects of the waves themselves end at about one half the wave length below the wave troughs. Indirect effects are probably worse though, and those can extend down to 300-400 feet.

If the water is deep enough and the USV can dive deep enough, its trivial to wait it out. A submarine for instance has little fear of a hurricane unless its stuck trying to get out of port because they waited too long.

It's not designed to be a submersible.

"A great many people think they are thinking when they are merely rearranging their prejudices." -- William James