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Comment: Re:Wat? (Score 1) 527

by darkonc (#46764071) Attached to: How Does Heartbleed Alter the 'Open Source Is Safer' Discussion?
Anybody who states it that categorically is stupid, ignorant, full of hubris -- or setting up a straw-man.

The problem here is that people have been using the argument that Open Source is better because these issues can't happen "because" of the visibility.

Pretty much anything built by man is subject to errors. That includes source code -- open or closed. Any sane programmer knows this. The difference with open source is that the code is open to the users. Especially in the case of security, correctness is a high priority for many users, and those users can drive the bug-hunt process. As such, bugs tend to get found and fixed (sometimes proactively) faster with Free and Open Source code than with proprietary code.

For companies, on the other hand, security and correctness, in general, is a cost centre. It's often only pursued to the extent to which ignoring it affects profits. If it's considered better for the bottom line to ignore/hide a critical security bug than to fix it, then it may never get fixed. -- "Better for the bottom line" includes being paid to keep a bug open by the NSA/KGB/MOSAD/etc. The well-being of the customer base is only a (indirect) part of the profit calculation.

"Bad for the bottom line." Includes fixing code that you're no longer actively selling -- unless the bug hurts your public image too badly.

That's why, for example, XP is no longer going to be supported -- despite the fact that perhaps hundreds of millions of machines still use it.

Redhat 7.2 isn't officially supported by Red Hat, either -- but despite the fact that the current user base is probably in the range of hundreds or thousands, somebody who considers it critical infrastructure and can't/won't upgrade it can still arrange to get bug fixes because the source is legally available. RedHat isn't the gatekeeper for support the way that Microsoft is for Windows. RedHat is simply the (highly) preferred source of support.

Comment: What's needed is a Class-Action Lawsuit. (Score 1) 319

by darkonc (#46761983) Attached to: Netflix Gets What It Pays For: Comcast Streaming Speeds Skyrocket
Comcast has been messing with people's net feeds for a while now. People have been paying for N-Megabit connections and, to the extent to which those connections have been with NetFlix, those connections have been wilfully and needlessly degraded to well below N-Megabit.

TIme for a mass refund. period.

(also time for some law firm to make megabucks litigating this issue)

Comment: Microsoft PR Fail (Score 3, Interesting) 144

I don't mind the heads-up about a little-used piece of Gnu software (as pointed out, most distros push OpenSSL), but I do mind astro-turfing the Microsoft PR line of "Nobody's responsible if Linux fails!"

The irony, of course, is that most people haven't read Microsoft's EULA which effectively says 'Not only are we not responsible if Windows fails, but we'll sue you if you try to fix it yourself.'

This is really gonna bite the hundreds of millions running XP who will be orphaned this year when Microsoft stops supporting it. Not only do they face the prospect, in a matter of weeks, of never again seeing security updates from Microsoft, but it will be illegal to even try to fix future bugs themselves (or hire a third party to do it).

This last bit is something that Linux users have as a right

Comment: Re:What linux will never be able to do (Score 1) 341

No support (not even 3rd party) for XP, and Windows 8 is just short of an entirely differend OS. You call THAT continuity?

At least with Linux, you have the option of (banding together with a group of like-minded entities, and) doing your own support, until you decide it's time to retire you old software/hardware combination.

That's the real choice and freedom you get when you use Free and/or Open Source software.

When Microsoft EOL's Vista (possibly as early as a couple of years from now), the people who tore their hair out getting used to it, are going to have to tear their hair out getting used to whatever Microsoft is shoving down people's throats then -- irrespective of whether or not the Vista based systems they have are really ready to be retired.

Comment: Yes and you might not get your data back (Score 1) 145

by kaladorn (#46667965) Attached to: GameSpy Multiplayer Shutting Down, Affecting Hundreds of Games
If Google keeled over today, my email and docs would be a loss.

I have some of the docs backed up locally, but not all (got used to using the cloud, don't know an easy full-google-docs backup tech). If email went guts up... argh. I do try to pull the mail archive periodically, but it is absolutely huge now. Beyond that, if I lose tagging - very likely in an export/import to different tool scenaro - then I lose a massive amount of organization that helps me find individual collections of email in 15 years worth of heavy email traffic.

This is my biggest issue with these services - even if you can get the data out, you might not get all of it and some of the metadata (organizing data) might no longer be useful/available.

I'd really love to see more open standards in use for both the downloading of all of this sort of stuff but also being able to reuse it in a new product if there was a need. But Google doesn't want you to do that, really.

Comment: Boxee also (Score 1) 145

by kaladorn (#46667955) Attached to: GameSpy Multiplayer Shutting Down, Affecting Hundreds of Games
Boxee hasn't had an update in forever because after they were bought, the Dev team was re-vectored. So some things that really should be fixed aren't and some things that could have been added now never will be. It *is* my TV source, so I will miss it when Netflix finally ceases to work or something comes along that means I have to get another box.

Really, it would be nice to see people develop these sorts of products with an idea to them having longevity, but no hardware manufacturer wants that.

Even content they are now trying to LICENSE to us for a time and in a particular format, rather than simply selling us the work to own (like books and games used to be) and that's a ridiculous model in my mind.

DRM-servers for many products will eventually go silent then everyone wanting to revisit old nostalgic movies and books will have to buy them again in some new format from a new provider. (legally, of course there are other non-legal options)

Comment: I'm similar.... (Score 1) 641

by kaladorn (#46667933) Attached to: Linus Torvalds Suspends Key Linux Developer
But I run it all:
5 licenses of XP Pro SP3 (old laptop, main desktop, netbook, older desktop, something I'm forgetting),
1 license Win 7 Home Premium (new laptop, to avoid win8 atrocity),
1 license Vista Business (argh),
1 Xubuntu install (small file server/dev box),
1 Ubuntu install (old laptop),
1 Boxee Box (linux),
1 WAP (linux),
Android 4.3 Tablet (nexus 7),
Android 4.4 Phone (nexus 4),
Android 4.1 Tablet (asus transformer prime),
1 Win95 box (older desktop),
1 WinNT 4.0 box (older desktop),

One of these once had a triple boot with XP or 95 alongside OS/2 2.1 and Yggdrasil Linux....

I'd love to migrate my XP boxes to Win 7 but Win 7 pricing is *still* stupid. And I'm vague on whether the laptop and even the desktops would have full drivers for all of the older stuff. Win 8+ is an atrocity - I can't say how much I hate METRO. Even in XP, I switched to the classic NT look.

Because of my disdain for Metro and Win 8, I may well end up with more Linux boxes. Ubuntu or Xubuntu, although a BSD might be tempting too. I've used RHEL at work and it isn't bad either.

My issue is I have so much software from small producers that I like that only runs on XP (and some of it actually requires kernel hacks - one DB fix in particular - that I am unconvinced will work on a virtualization platform) that I feel I'll have to keep some XP boxes up and running.

I rather hate the fact that I need nothing (except security updates) from Win7 or Win8 and once again I've had to relearn where all the admin tools are and so on (just like every Windows release) and I'm going to have to rebuy a bunch of apps that cost $$$ that work fine for me on XP on the new platform for no increase in utility.

Ubuntu is good and the apps are okay, but honestly they just don't match up to what the MS office apps (for instance) can do. I've tried libre office, star office, and a number of other products. They just aren't as easy to use nor as capable as MS products IMO.

The only compelling reasons to migrate forward are professional experience with the new OSes (most like teeth pulling) and security (given XP security updates are coming to an end... you'd have thought MS could out source this and charge some $ to keep security updates coming for a few more years, but they want you to migrate.

But being on Linux is no protection from changes of a major nature (Unity appearing in Ubuntu as one example). Every platform, even the free ones, if you want to keep up with current levels of software for compatibility and security, you have to take all the other UI changes, repackagings, deprecations, and additions. It's the miserable cost of staying current.

No, I'm not a luddite. I just know that XP gave me functionally pretty much everything I've needed as a professional, small office user, and heavy internet user/developer. Security could have been better (no doubt), but the truth is what Win7 and WIn8 have added has been of little utility to me and therefore is primarily an annoyance. And Chromebook sure isn't a substitute, nor is MacOS.

Comment: Pedantic (Score 1) 149

by kaladorn (#46667891) Attached to: TCP/IP Might Have Been Secure From the Start If Not For the NSA
TCP is transport layer. IP is not. (at least by the OSI model and I think the TCP model though I'm a bit rustier on that one - Network layer is IP)

There is no reason to imagine TCP/IP could not have included Session or higher level encryption protocols without really affecting the TCP or IP parts of the protocol stack. The design could well have been exactly as you suggest.

"There is hopeful symbolism in the fact that flags do not wave in a vacuum." --Arthur C. Clarke