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Comment VLANs are your friend (Score 2) 384

I think you could configure each port on the switch with a different default VLAN and plug those into the terminals (e.g. Port 1 gets VLAN 1, Port 2 gets VLAN 2, etc). That will by default separate each port into a separate network. Then use VLAN tagging on your XP VMs that you were going to spin up, so they each are effectively connected to a separate port on the switch (e.g. VM 1 is tagged for VLAN 1, VM 2 is tagged for VLAN 2, etc).

This is just the high-level details of what you'll need to do. Most lower-end consumer grade switches don't have VLAN support, so you may need to spring for a better switch, and make sure your VM software supports VLAN tagging.

Comment Tracking Beacon? (Score 4, Insightful) 40

potentially turning every coffee consumer's device into a tracking beacon

Sensationalize much? Maybe it's just to tell which Starbucks you're closest to so it know where to place the order or narrow down the nearby store results? That would be the more likely reason.

Do people seriously think that any app requesting location services is turned into an always-on tracking beacon sending their every move back to Big Data(tm)?

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