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Comment: Re:maintenance updates during the day ? (Score 4, Informative) 98

by Longstaff (#44576279) Attached to: Washington Post Hacked, a Day After New York Times
(former NYT Engineer) Some potentially disruptive maintenance that can be localized to a single team (say, storage maintenance) would be pushed to an overnight change window. However, emergency reachability for certain teams at NYT can problematic, so some (expected) low-impact work requiring multiple teams is done during the day. They have multiple data centers and everything is fully redundant, so updates can happen to service-drained components, be tested and then flipped once verified. Apparently that could not or did not happen here.

FTR, the entire Digital Core Infrastructure team (responsible for Storage, Virtual Infrastructure, OS Mgmt, App Support and some networking) resigned approximately 3 months ago.

Comment: Re:NYT not hacked. (Score 4, Insightful) 98

by Longstaff (#44575447) Attached to: Washington Post Hacked, a Day After New York Times
Fox Business were the first to "break" the story with a "source close to the matter". Everybody went off their lead. Every single technical statement in the article is incorrect and/or laughable. http://www.foxbusiness.com/technology/2013/08/14/new-york-times-site-experiences-major-outage/

Comment: Re:He Is Quick to Forgive Apple, Of Course (Score 2, Insightful) 944

by Longstaff (#32040136) Attached to: Steve Jobs Publishes Some "Thoughts On Flash"
Anyone that gripes about wanting Flash on their phone/mobile device *HAS NEVER HAD* Flash on a mobile device. If they had, they wouldn't want it so bad.

*raises hand*

Here, please. I have an N800 and an N900. I *do* want flash on my devices and I *do* use it. Both of those devices have adblock plus to combat annoying ads with the built-in browser. The main thing is, I can still use flash if (and when) I want to. That's my choice to make - not the manufacturers.

Oh look! It uses hover states for mouse tracking - something that isn't supported on a touch interface... Oh look! The N900 has a touch interface that supports hover!

Comment: Re:Why a smartphone? Google voice + prepaid is bes (Score 1) 199

by Longstaff (#31456582) Attached to: Best Smartphone Plan Covering US and Canada?

Google Voice, Gizmo5 account (if you already have one; they're not accepting new requests) or a SkypeIn US number. Get a GSM smartphone with a simcard from a Canadian provider (since you're there most of the time). When in the states, get a pre-paid sim card with voice/data or just data. If you need the SkypeIn, it will set you back $30 for the year.

You now set up GV to forward calls to your US number to your VoIP account (Gizmo/Skype) while in Canada. Calls will be delivered via data. When in the states, you can continue with the same method, but with a prepaid simcard OR you can just forward via voice.

Note that while data plans for Canada or pre-paid US may be capped/metered you only need to use the GSM data when you are out-and-about. Any decent smartphone these days will happily shuffle data through wifi instead.

My Nokia N900 might be a bit too pricey, but will do everything here seamlessly with the built-in Skype and SIP integration.

The only thing this doesn't cover is porting your existing number to GoogleVoice...

Comment: Re:You're looking at it wrong. (Score 1) 750

by Longstaff (#31288738) Attached to: Should I Take Toyota's Software Update?
I would add that the "floor mat" excuse always sounded like BS to me.

There may have been more than one conclusion or actual root cause for the stuck accelerators. I can confirm that on one of my (non-Toyota) cars I have personally seen 2 different aftermarket floor mat styles slide forward and end up in a position that stuck the gas pedal down.

Comment: Re:AT&T Trouble Self Inflicted? (Score 1) 217

TMobile Even More Plus.

TMobile is very friendly to unlocked phones. If you buy one of their subsidized phones, they will unlock it for you 90 days from purchase. They even have a gray market phone support department; they support the phones they don't even sell...

Comment: Re:Bogus outdated thinking (Score 1) 444

by Longstaff (#29477679) Attached to: RAID's Days May Be Numbered
I would mod up if I could. I've got two separate Isilon clusters at work and they are indeed awesome. Just one of the features that go above and beyond standard RAID is what they call FlexProtect. I allows for the ability to handle your redundancy not just at a node/disk level, but right down to a directory/file level. Only need N+1 except for some critical data? You can give that file or whole directory N+4 while keeping the rest of the cluster N+1.

Comment: Re:Expose a problem and go to jail (Score 1) 847

by Longstaff (#29085701) Attached to: Woman With Police-Monitoring Blog Arrested
It appears that you misunderstand the aphorism...obscure != secret

There is some, albeit minimal value in security through obscurity...but that's not what you're talking about. Securing something via obscurity is akin to giving an attacker 100% of what they need to break the security and putting a layer of obscurity on top. Encoding a message with ROT13, for example. Giving an attacker the ROT13 encoded text and having the ROT13 algorithm available is everything they need to decipher the message.

Having a security system based on a secret key is *not* security through obscurity. The attacker simply does NOT have all of the information needed to break the system. Now, the system is only as secure as long as the key is secret. With a large enough keyspace, you can be more than reasonably assured that the system is secure as long as the key remains a secret.

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