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Comment: Re: Assumptions are the mother of all ... (Score 1) 172 172

lol. I purchased several with the express intent to not upgrade.

Same here, actually a number of my clients XP legacy apps have 16 bit installers, ergo no go Win 7 natively. These apps are installed in XPvirt boxes under Windows 7. I have no idea if Win 10 pro will support XPvirt boxes or if support for them will shortly disappear thereafter in some sort of forced update..

My advice to any business owner, would be to avoid this latest Win 10 release like the plague, they still don't have a stable build and it's less than 1 month before product release. I feel that using Win 10 is a high risk proposition at best, let someone else be the guinea pig.

+ - Apple DID conspire to inflate ebook prices, must pay $450 million->

Mark Wilson writes: On the same day that Apple Music launched, Apple received some bad news from the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. In a 2 to 1 vote, judges ruled that the company did conspire with publishers to inflate the prices of ebooks sold through iBookstore, agreeing with a 2013 ruling.

The judges found that Apple had violated federal antitrust law in coming to arrangements with five publishers, resulting in book prices jumping from $9.99 to between $12.99 and $14.99. Two years ago US District Judge Denise Cote said that Apple was "central" to a price-fixing conspiracy. The ruling having been upheld today, Apple will now have to pay $450 million.

Link to Original Source

+ - SCOTUS denies Google's request to appeal Oracle API (c) case

Neil_Brown writes: The Supreme Court of the United States has today denied Google's request to appeal against the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit's ruling (PDF) that the structure, sequence and organization of 37 of Oracle's APIs (application program interfaces) was capable of copyright protection. The case is not over, as Google can now seek to argue that, despite the APIs being restricted by copyright, its handling amounts to "fair use".

Professor Pamela Samuelson has previously commented (PDF) on the implications if SCOTUS declined to hear the appeal.

More details at The Verge.

+ - Cisco Security Appliances Found to Have Default SSH Keys

Trailrunner7 writes: Many Cisco security appliances contain default, authorized SSH keys that can allow an attacker to connect to an appliance and take almost any action he chooses. The company said that all of its Web Security Virtual Appliances, Email Security Virtual Appliances, and Content Security Management Virtual Appliances are affected by the vulnerability.

This bug is about as serious as they come for enterprises. An attacker who is able to discover the default SSH key would have virtually free reign on vulnerable boxes, which, given Cisco’s market share and presence in the enterprise worldwide, is likely a high number. The default key apparently was inserted into the software for support reasons.

“The vulnerability is due to the presence of a default authorized SSH key that is shared across all the installations of WSAv, ESAv, and SMAv. An attacker could exploit this vulnerability by obtaining the SSH private key and using it to connect to any WSAv, ESAv, or SMAv. An exploit could allow the attacker to access the system with the privileges of the root user," Cisco said.

+ - Supreme Court Upholds Key Obamacare Subsidies

HughPickens.com writes: Retuers repots that the US Supreme Court has ruled 6 — 3 in favor of the nationwide availability of tax subsidies that are crucial to the implementation of President Barack Obama's signature healthcare law, handing a major victory to the president. It marked the second time in three years that the high court ruled against a major challenge to the law brought by conservatives seeking to gut it. "Congress passed the Affordable Care Act to improve health insurance markets, not to destroy them," wrote Chief Justice Roberts adding that nationwide availability of the credits is required to "avoid the type of calamitous result that Congress plainly meant to avoid." The ruling will come as a major relief to Obama as he seeks to ensure that his legacy legislative achievement is implemented effectively and survives political and legal attacks before he leaves office in early 2017.

Justice Antonin Scalia took the relatively rare step of reading a summary of his dissenting opinion from the bench. "We really should start calling the law SCOTUScare," said Scalia referencing the court’s earlier decision upholding the constitutionality of the law. SCOTUS is the acronym for the Supreme Court of the United States.

+ - New Manufacturing Technique Halves Cost of Lithium-Ion Batteries->

An anonymous reader writes: Experts in materials science at MIT have developed a new process for creating lithium-ion batteries that will drop the associated production costs by half. The researchers say fundamental battery construction techniques have been refined over the past two decades, but not re-thought. "The new battery design is a hybrid between flow batteries and conventional solid ones: In this version, while the electrode material does not flow, it is composed of a similar semisolid, colloidal suspension of particles. Chiang and Carter refer to this as a 'semisolid battery.' This approach greatly simplifies manufacturing, and also makes batteries that are flexible and resistant to damage, says Chiang. ... Instead of the standard method of applying liquid coatings to a roll of backing material, and then having to wait for that material to dry before it can move to the next manufacturing step, the new process keeps the electrode material in a liquid state and requires no drying stage at all. Using fewer, thicker electrodes, the system reduces the conventional battery architecture’s number of distinct layers, as well as the amount of nonfunctional material in the structure, by 80 percent."
Link to Original Source

+ - HP Researchers Disclose Details of Internet Explorer Zero Day

Trailrunner7 writes: Researchers at HP’s Zero Day Initiative have disclosed full details and proof-of-concept exploit code for a series of bugs they discovered that allow attackers to bypass a key exploit mitigation in Internet Explorer. The disclosure is a rarity for ZDI. The company typically does not publish complete details and exploit code for the bugs it reports to vendors until after the vulnerabilities are fixed. But in this case, Microsoft has told the researchers that the company doesn’t plan to fix the vulnerabilities, even though the bugs were serous enough to win ZDI’s team a $125,000 Blue Hat Bonus from Microsoft. The reason: Microsoft doesn’t think the vulnerabilities affect enough users.

The vulnerabilities that the ZDI researchers submitted to Microsoft enable an attacker to fully bypass ASLR (address space layout randomization), one of the many mitigations in IE that help prevent successful exploitation of certain classes of bugs. ZDI reported the bugs to Microsoft last year and disclosed some limited details of them in February. The researchers waited to release the full details until Microsoft fixed all of the flaws, but Microsoft later informed them that they didn’t plan to patch the remaining bugs because they didn’t affect 64-bit systems.

Comment: Re:Very old news (Score 1) 297 297

I would not trust those Backblaze stats.. A quick inspection of blackblaze storage pods indicates an improper(vertical) mounting method.

This vertical configuration would likely cause a premature failure rate for drives that are designed for side or horizontal(preferred) mounting configurations.

Disk drives drive mounted in this particular vertical configuration places abnormal amounts of thermal and mechanical related stress (the entire mass of drive+internal movements) on the SATA Power and Data connections (a condition they were never rated for).

Note: You can probably get away with this type fixed mount configurations(SATA+Power) for 2.5" SATA drives since they have significantly reduced mass (20x less)) per drive. I've designed many different types of drive bays(SCSI, SAS, etc) and would never consider stressing connectors in this manor.

In summary, The observed failure rate may be more indicative of an improper storage array design, rather than the drives themselves, which may have faster seek times, resulting in increased dynamic forces stressing the SATA connections over time.

+ - Assange's Stay In Embassy Has Cost British Taxpayers $17 Million

HughPickens.com writes: Harriet Alexander reports in The Telegraph that Julian Assange's three-year stay in the Ecuadorian embassy has cost British taxpayers more than $17 million for around the clock. police surveillance at the embassy. The Metropolitan Police refused to discuss how many policemen were deployed to the embassy, but they did confirm the cost. The Met said the figure included $10.3m of what they termed "opportunity costs" – police officer pay costs that would be incurred in normal duties – and $4.3m of additional costs such as police overtime. A further $1.7m was put down to "indirect costs" such as administration. Assange challenged his extradition order to Sweden through the courts, but when his appeals failed he absconded and sought refuge inside the embassy of Ecuador – a country whose president has spoken publicly of his support for the 43-year-old computer hacker. Ecuador granted him asylum in August 2012, but as soon as he sets foot outside the building Britain will deport him to Sweden. He has been indoors ever since.

The Swedish director of public prosecutions, Marianne Ny, has grown impatient. In March she said that she would consent, reluctantly, to interview Assange inside the embassy – because the statute of limitations for some of the alleged crimes runs out in August. "Now that time is of the essence, I have viewed it therefore necessary to accept such deficiencies to the investigation and likewise take the risk that the interview does not move the case forward, particularly as there are no other measures on offer without Assange being present in Sweden."

+ - Is Microsoft's .NET Ecosystem on the Decline? ->

Nerval's Lobster writes: In a posting that recently attracted some buzz online, .NET developer Justin Angel (a former program manager for Silverlight) argued that the .NET ecosystem is headed for collapse—and that could take interest in C# along with it. “Sure, you’ll always be able to find a job working in C# (like you would with COBOL), but you’ll miss out on customer reach and risk falling behind the technology curve,” he wrote. But is C# really on the decline? According to Dice’s data, the popularity of C# has risen over the past several years; it ranks No. 26 on Dice’s ranking of most-searched terms. But Angel claims he pulled data from Indeed.com that shows job trends for C# on the decline. Data from the TIOBE developer interest index mirrors that trend, he said, with “C# developer interest down approximately 60% down back to 2006-2008 levels.” Is the .NET ecosystem really headed for long-term implosion, thanks in large part to developers devoting their energies to other platforms such as iOS and Android?
Link to Original Source

+ - USAF Cuts Drone Flights as Stress Drives Off Operators

HughPickens.com writes: The NYT reports that the US is being forced to cut back on drone flights as America’s drone operators are burning out and the Air Force is losing more drone pilots than they can train. “We’re at an inflection point right now,” says Col. James Cluff, the commander of the Air Force’s 432nd Wing. Drone missions increased tenfold in the past decade, relentlessly pushing the operators in an effort to meet the insatiable demand for streaming video of insurgent activities in Iraq, Afghanistan and other war zones, including Somalia, Libya and now Syria. The biggest problem is that a significant number of the 1,200 pilots are completing their obligation to the Air Force and are opting to leave. Colonel Cluff says that many feel “undermanned and overworked,” sapped by alternating day and night shifts with little chance for academic breaks or promotion.

What had seemed to be a benefit of the job, the novel way that the crews could fly Predator and Reaper drones via satellite links while living safely in the United States with their families, has created new types of stresses as they constantly shift back and forth between war and family activities and become, in effect, perpetually deployed. “Having our folks make that mental shift every day, driving into the gate and thinking, ‘All right, I’ve got my war face on, and I’m going to the fight,’ and then driving out of the gate and stopping at Walmart to pick up a carton of milk or going to the soccer game on the way home — and the fact that you can’t talk about most of what you do at home — all those stressors together are what is putting pressure on the family, putting pressure on the airman," says Cruff. The colonel says the stress on the operators belied a complaint by some critics that flying drones was like playing a video game or that pressing the missile fire button 7,000 miles from the battlefield made it psychologically easier for them to kill. “Everyone else thinks that the whole program or the people behind it are a joke," says Brandon Bryant, a former drone camera operator who worked at Nellis Air Force Base, "that we are video-game warriors, that we’re Nintendo warriors."

+ - Jeb Bush Skeptical Of Reports That The H-1B Program Affects US Workers 1 1

theodp writes: ComputerWorld's Patrick Thibodeau reports that Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush does not exactly come across as supportive or sympathetic to displaced U.S. IT workers. Asked to respond to recent stories about companies using H-1B visas to displace American workers with foreign tech labor, Bush said, "I’ve actually seen it on Fox, three or four times, this subject. I’ve been curious to know what the full story is. ... Sometimes you see things in the news reports, you don’t get the full picture. Maybe that’s the case here." Perhaps Jeb has gotten too close to the reality distortion field of Mark Zuckerberg's FWD.us PAC, whose backers include Zuck Pal Joe Green (who nixed the idea of giving jobs to "just sort of okay" U.S. workers), Lars Dalgaard (whose message to laid-off IT workers was "you don't deserve the job"), and Code.org CEO Hadi Partovi (who informed journalists that "H-1Bs in CS rarely displace [American tech workers]").

+ - World thinnest Light Bulb using Graphene

jan_jes writes: Scientists have created the world’s thinnest light bulb using Graphene, as a filament. The ultrathin graphene was turned into a superheated filament – just like the thin wire of an incandescent light bulb – which glowed at a temperature of above 2500 degrees Celsius. The visible light from atomically thin graphene is so intense that it is visible even to the naked eye, without any additional magnification. This study is published in the Advance Online Publication (AOP). Earlier this year, "A dimmable LED bulb with a graphene-coated filament was designed at Manchester University (video) — is to go on sale later this year, said by its UK developers".

Most public domain software is free, at least at first glance.