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Comment: Re:Answer (Score 1) 331

by Christian Smith (#49787017) Attached to: How Much C++ Should You Know For an Entry-Level C++ Job?

C++ is not C. C++ written like C tends to be crap code

You might want to avoid flying on commercial airliners then, because they have lots of avionics systems running C++ code exactly like that, with exceptions explicitly banned. Countless other embedded systems are the same way.

*shudder* Are avionics really written in C++?

never, ever, worrying about cleaning up at the bottom of a function what you allocate at the top.

In these embedded systems, the "delete" keyword is also banned. You're never allowed to free memory once it's allocated.

Is memory deterministically pre-allocated in such systems? That would certainly make it safer, but less flexible.

Comment: Re:One-time pads (Score 1) 206

by Christian Smith (#49734363) Attached to: Australian Law Could Criminalize the Teaching of Encryption

If you have a way to securely distribute the one time pad, then you can just as well hand the recipient the message and get it all over with.

Except, a one time pad allows you to send your message securely at any time, instead of only when meeting.

I wouldn't want to physically go to the bank every time I need to do a transaction. A one time pad allows me to get the one time pad from the bank, and do multiple transactions securely in the future using that one time pad.

Comment: Re:Why you should care (Score 1) 154

by Christian Smith (#49677627) Attached to: Windows 10 the Last Version of Windows? Not So Fast.

Buy a new machine? That'll be a new Windows license because OEM licenses are not transferable. I can see a cash cow there as healthy as it's ever been, so long as they can retain their number 1 position in OEM machines.

New machines are a pretty small cow (maybe a rabbit or something) because they're only getting OEM volume-license prices rather than full retail for a member of the public upgrading their machine. Depends on the volume I guess, but you have to shift a lot of licenses at OEM volume prices to match the profit from a retail license sale.

OEM volume licenses basically cost Microsoft nothing. There is no packaging, no retail overhead, no support costs even (support, if any, is via the OEM) and is tied to the machine on which it's sold. Sure, less cash cow now than when the typical machine lifecycle was 3 years.

The full retail version, however, is a transferable license, and most machines come with a license anyway, so the volume is very low, with the associated packaging, support and retail overhead associated.

Comment: Re:Why you should care (Score 1) 154

by Christian Smith (#49671347) Attached to: Windows 10 the Last Version of Windows? Not So Fast.

It sounds to me like Microsoft doesn't even have a clue what they're doing with Windows.

They do seem to have lost the plot, first a version of Windows so bad they skipped an entire major version number to distance themselves from it, and now it looks like they're killing off their cash-cow upgrade cycle where everyone has to go out and buy version n+1 every few years because Bill^H^H^HSteve^H^H^Hwhoeveritisnow says so.

Buy a new machine? That'll be a new Windows license because OEM licenses are not transferable. I can see a cash cow there as healthy as it's ever been, so long as they can retain their number 1 position in OEM machines.

Comment: Re:To keep the performance up the advertised value (Score 1) 65

by Christian Smith (#49657609) Attached to: Samsung's SSD 840 Read Performance Degradation Explained

And the prescribed maintenance is rewriting all data twice a month because it tends to be forgetful. What a fantastic piece of hardware! That is what we ought to discuss here; rather than if a brute-force workaround ... just works. Sure it does!

No. The prescribed maintenance is to rewrite old data that hasn't been written to for 2 months, because it tends to be slow to read otherwise. No-one has reported data loss as a result of this.

Notice also, that all the reporting so far uses the artificial benchmarks to demonstrate the problem. In normal use, you'd be unlikely to ever notice, unless you're copying big old date files from one location to another.

Comment: Re:Technically right (Score 2) 245

by Christian Smith (#49483797) Attached to: Google Responds To EU Antitrust Claims In Android Blog Post

Well, I bought this phone for my grandma. It is a Samsung. So how should she get rid of the Google Android and work Googless?

Please explain in 3 easy to understand steps.

Just because it is technically possible does not mean anything. The reality is that if you buy an android, you are linked to Google.

1. Open settings.
2. Go to accounts.
3. Remove google account.

There, easy. If you don't want Android at all, buy a different phone. Perhaps a cheap second hand iPhone, or look at one of the cheap FirefoxOS or Lumia Windows phones.

And in Android world, neither Nokia X phones nor Amazon Fire phones are linked to Google.

Comment: Re:Nokia (Score 1) 245

by Christian Smith (#49483779) Attached to: Google Responds To EU Antitrust Claims In Android Blog Post

Every time I read about this EU nonsense with Android, I think about Nokia and Symbian. Maybe the EU is chapped because all the good smart phone OSs are developed in the US?

... but I got a smartphone recently - a Samsung Ace 3 with Android. My impression is that the concept has huge promise, but that it is set up to disappoint massively, because although it is so-called open-source, you are not likely to be set free from the tie-in. This particular phone comes without Google Play (and as Google say: 'if it isn't installed from the start, you are not supposed to have it'), and all I can find on Samsung's equivalent is ad- and spyware. I have a suspicion the same holds for Google Play, but I don't know. Even if you download Google Play from elsehwere, it will not be allowed to run - it gets killed instantly.

To my mind, this is very close to being abuse of monopoly - 'collusion to abuse a monopoly' if there is such a concept.

But this is nothing to do with Google. Samsung have taken android and bastardized it to their own ends. Google Play isn't anything like this.

I tried using my phone without Google Apps, and it is largely usable, but I just missed such things as Maps, Google Camera, even location history.

BTW, you can use Cyanogenmod 11 or 12 with the Galaxy Ace 3, I believe, onto which you can load Google Apps or not, and save you from the Sumsung crapware you appear to have now.

Comment: Re:Too late; already sold my EVO's on eBay (Score 1) 72

This whole EVO performance problem is a crock of shit. People only noticed the problem running synthetic benchmarks. For normal usage, there'll be no perceptible performance issue with these drives. And yes, I have a couple of EVO drives, and yes, they are also hit with the performance issue. I just don't notice because it's such a non-issue outside of synthetic benchmarks.

Bullshit I have 2 EVO's and I did notice. Some regions were very very slow (50-60 MB/s).

When your VM copy suddenly takes 5-10 times as long as expected, you do notice.

OK, 99.9% of the use cases won't notice. Entire VM copies are probably quite rare, and are generally not an interactive type of operation (you don't sit there watching it copy, waiting for it to finish.)

I've got a 840 EVO machine that's been powered off for a couple of months. I can't wait to power it up again and see if I do indeed perceive performance issues.

Comment: Re:EVO 850 (Score 1) 72

I'd expect the TLC FLASH in the 850 EVO to be much more robust against this sort of issue, being of a much bigger process size (50nm?) and suffering less electron leakage as a result.

The bug is absolutely not caused by electron leakage! Flash drives would be dying all the time if that was the case.

Electrons absolutely do leak. It's slow, but TLC is more vulnerable to voltage changes from electron leakage. JEDEC specs even dictate the minimum amount of time of data should be correctly retained without power.

The firmware fix appears to be to just rewrite old data, so that cells are regularly freshly programmed to avoid the costly read error recovery cycles that reduce performance.

Comment: Re:EVO 850 (Score 1) 72

I think you can fully expect Samsung to apply the firmware fix to all subsequent EVO series if applicable.

I'd expect the TLC FLASH in the 850 EVO to be much more robust against this sort of issue, being of a much bigger process size (50nm?) and suffering less electron leakage as a result.

Personally, I'd be happy to continue buying Samsung drives as and when required, especially the 3D VNAND based ones, with all the benefits that 3D NAND brings. Of course, that might change as other vendors introduce 3D NAND, but it's likely to change on a value basis, rather than any technical basis.

I have no affiliation to Samsung other than being a satisfied customer of their drives. I also have SSD drives from Sandisk, Crucial, Intel and KingFast, so I'm no Samsung fanboy either.

Comment: Re:Too late; already sold my EVO's on eBay (Score 1) 72

I offloaded the EVO's on eBay (being honest about the reason) and got myself a couple of Plextor Pro drives. Running in RAID0 they are a bit slower at random reads than the EVOs, but faster at sustained transfer rates.

Wow, so you replaced your existing drives with a performance "problem", with some new drives that you yourself admit are slower at random reads (BTW, guess what sort of reads are more important to the perception of speed). Do you really think you're a savvy consumer?

This whole EVO performance problem is a crock of shit. People only noticed the problem running synthetic benchmarks. For normal usage, there'll be no perceptible performance issue with these drives. And yes, I have a couple of EVO drives, and yes, they are also hit with the performance issue. I just don't notice because it's such a non-issue outside of synthetic benchmarks.

Data safety is key, and there have been no reports as far as I'm aware of this issue affecting data integrity.

Comment: Re:not the problem (Score 2) 93

Centralized remote syslog server that also feeds to Elasticsearch which indexes the syslog entries for reporting and searching. After daily aggregate reports are done, a week later the entries are moved to spinning rust and only the canned reports stay on SSD. With the way Lucene works and our indexing is setup, a 100 byte syslog entry can easily turn into 2k of index. The canned reports now only take a tenth of the time they took before we added the five Samsung drives and the historical reports load even faster than that, but the drives are just wearing out too quickly for comfort.

So you're simply using the wrong drives. The 840 EVO is a consumer level drive. You want a more enterprise like drive like Intel 3700, which is warranted for 10 drive writes per day for 5 years. It costs more, sure, but you can surely justify the cost based on the performance and reliability benefits.

Comment: Re:Star Wars! (Score 1) 253

by Christian Smith (#49162815) Attached to: 20-Year-Old Military Weather Satellite Explodes In Orbit

It took nearly that long for the current battery tech to leave the lab and be a commodity, so bleeding edge satellite batteries from 20 years ago may compare directly to ten year old or maybe even five year old laptop batteries.

I doubt it. The last thing you want in an unserviceable satellite is bleeding edge battery technology. You want to use what you know works, stable mature technology, and work within the known limitations of such technology.

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