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Comment: iOS users feel it (Score 2) 161 161

I currently have a web radio transceiver front panel application that works on Linux, Windows, MacOS, Android, Amazon Kindle Fire, under Chrome, Firefox, or Opera. No porting, no software installation. See for details of what I'm writing.

The one unsupported popular platform? iOS, because Safari doesn't have the function used to acquire the microphone in the web audio API (and perhaps doesn't have other parts of that API), and Apple insists on handicapping other browsers by forcing them to use Apple's rendering engine.

I don't have any answer other than "don't buy iOS until they fix it".

Comment: Re:FreeNAS (Score 1) 209 209

Same here.

zfsonlinux doesn't have built in CIFS export

It's not built in, but it is integrated. Just use
zfs set sharesmb=on pool/srv

If you are having perms issues, make sure you have acl support enabled in your kernel and userland, and then use the aclinherit property on your zfs pool. Samba should handle the translation between NT and posix ACLs seamlessly, but you may need to use Samba4 for the best results.

Comment: Re:Randomness can't come from a computer program (Score 1) 64 64

Most of us do have a need to transmit messages privately. Do you not make any online purchases?

Yes, but those have to use public-key encryption. I am sure of my one-time-pad encryption because it's just exclusive-OR with the data, and I am sure that my diode noise is really random and there is no way for anyone else to predict or duplicate it. I can not extend the same degree of surety to public-key encryption. The software is complex, the math is hard to understand, and it all depends on the assumption that some algorithms are difficult to reverse - which might not be true.

Comment: Re:FreeNAS (Score 1) 209 209

I'll go with one of the co-architects of ZFS, Matthew Ahrens,

There's nothing special about ZFS that requires/encourages the use of ECC RAM more so than any other filesystem. If you use UFS, EXT, NTFS, btrfs, etc without ECC RAM, you are just as much at risk as if you used ZFS without ECC RAM. Actually, ZFS can mitigate this risk to some degree if you enable the unsupported ZFS_DEBUG_MODIFY flag (zfs_flags=0x10). This will checksum the data while at rest in memory, and verify it before writing to disk, thus reducing the window of vulnerability from a memory error.

I would simply say: if you love your data, use ECC RAM. Additionally, use a filesystem that checksums your data, such as ZFS.

In other words, there is a non-zero chance that you will get silent data corruptions on disk if you don't use ECC RAM. It is the same risk with ZFS as with any other filesystem. And yet, personal computers have been running without ECC RAM for decades and it hasn't been a travesty. So yeah, if you are running in the type of situation where you absolutely must ensure the highest level of data integrity, then you must use ECC RAM. If you are running your own personal home media NAS, it is probably not an unmitigable risk to buy cheaper hardware. The storage gurus will argue, "Why use ZFS if you don't care about it's data integrity features?" My response is that ZFS has a ton of other very useful features that make it a great filesystem.

BTW, bad vs. good RAM is not the same thing as non-ECC vs. ECC RAM. While ECC RAM will protect you from bit flips, a bad stick of RAM is still a bad stick with or without the extra parity bit. Aaron Toponce has a good (non-sensational) discussion on the topic,

Comment: Re:Bad RNG will make your crypto predictable (Score 2) 64 64

The problem with FM static is that you could start receiving a station, and if you don't happen to realize you are now getting low-entropy data, that's a problem.

There are many well-characterized forms of electronic noise: thermal noise, shot noise, avalanche noise, flicker noise, all of these are easy to produce with parts that cost a few dollars.

Comment: Randomness can't come from a computer program (Score 2, Interesting) 64 64

True randomness comes from quantum mechanical phenomena. Linux /dev/random is chaotic, yes, enough to seed a software "R"NG. But we can do better and devices to do so are cheap these days.

I wouldn't trust anything but diode noise for randomness. If I had a need to transmit messages privately, I'd only trust a one-time pad.

Comment: Re:OwnCloud (Score 1) 209 209

Owncloud is a poor substitute for a fileserver because everything has to be owned by the webserver user at the the filesystem level. All of the access controls and versioning is handled by the owncloud webapp. So if you need to operate outside of the owncloud environment you are screwed, like for example using owncloud's dropbox-like client for easy syncing and at the same time exporting the filesystem via Samba for people to map network drives.

Comment: Re:ZFS (Score 2) 209 209

Also, can you easily find all the snapshots for a single file?

If you export the filesystem via Samba, you can enable the VSS compatibility feature, which allows Windows users to access the "Previous Versions" tab. There is no equivalent for other Mac or Linux clients, or other network filesystems (NFS, etc) that I know of. It would be a nice feature to have.

Comment: Re:I'm spending 60% of my monthly income on rent (Score 1) 937 937

Communism has been tried on a large scale - see Mao's Great Leap Forward.

Nope. That was a totalitarian socialist program pushing a collectivism that didn't work. Communism is a post-scarcity society and obviously scarcity was the thing Mao produced best.

"Ninety percent of baseball is half mental." -- Yogi Berra