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Comment: I see the problem now (Score 1) 115 115

I see the problem now - you didn't even try to understand my example. The point of the example is that with AMANDA the instructions on what to do with the files (eg. how to fall back as far as "dd" and "tar" if that's all you've got and you are in a hurry) are in the header as ASCII text. That's why if you can't work out how to restore a single system from that in a couple of hours you are really selling yourself very short. That's how such things should be. Self-documenting as much as possible. No arbitrary bullshit since it doesn't go down very well when half your time is taken by fending off users who want to know when you'll have things back as they were.

Comment: Re:Iran is not trying to save money (Score 1) 334 334

A bit before 1970 many places, even Egypt, South Africa and Indonesia had nuclear weapons programs (which didn't get far) - plus even Turkish and Australian governments were considering starting one. Turkey got as far as trying to get approval for a CANDU reactor to make weapon material (as India successfully did later to make their first bomb) while Australia just talked about it at high levels of government leaving us to read about it in sheer disbelief years later when the papers were released.

Comment: Re:Don't strawman me (Score 1) 115 115

Last decade, when you were doing this shit

Bit longer than that and still doing it. Why bother to quote something if you haven't read and comprehended it?

Twenty-year-old back-ups?

Indeed. Even though that's a bad idea with media life and formats there's a lot of material that fits that description, especially in the geosciences and some other applied sciences. It's something I have to deal with several times a year with some clients even providing tapes from the late 1970s.

Comment: What's with the misrepresentation? (Score 1) 115 115

Losing an encryption key is one of the most minor risks I can imagine

It's both potentially a complete showstopper and totally unnecessary in the first place. I don't really understand why you cannot grasp the concept.
I'll restate something above in another way - if you can't work out how to do a bare metal restore on a single system with all the needed data on media that you can read and the right hardware then somebody has seriously fucked up. That guy that worked there should have put something together in such a way as someone with a moderate skillset can work it out, or someone with detailed instructions can do it with very little in the way of skills. Requiring a key that can be lost is a major fuckup waiting to happen. You suggested you wouldn't be able to work it out in a couple of hours - I think you were selling yourself short to try to make a point just as your ridiculous strawman in my name "with no foreknowledge of their systems" WHEN THE ENTIRE POINT is to PROVIDE FOREKNOWLEDGE OF THEIR SYSTEMS by having disaster recovery documents designed to be read by the least skilled person capable of doing the job.

Comment: Yes they were morons (Score 1) 111 111

From "The Hacker Crackdown", Bruce Sterling, as linked above:

The day after the raid, Steve Jackson visited the local Secret Service headquarters with a lawyer in tow. There he confronted Tim Foley (still in Austin at that time) and demanded his book back. But there was trouble. GURPS Cyberpunk, alleged a Secret Service agent to astonished businessman Steve Jackson, was "a manual for computer crime."
"It's science fiction," Jackson said.
"No, this is real." This statement was repeated several times, by several agents. Jackson's ominously accurate game had passed from pure, obscure, smallscale fantasy into the impure, highly publicized, largescale fantasy of the Hacker Crackdown.

Comment: Re:Can't win, can only break even (Score 1) 512 512

I'm not familiar with McAfee.
It is with F-Prot but I set it to run on Sunday nights, which may or may not be good practice. I really don't have enough MS Windows machines to be anything resembling a source of more than casual advice, most of the desktops and servers I work with are *nix boxes. I mostly use F-Prot because their linux version is good for scanning email for viruses and their MS Windows version doesn't seem to slow machines down unless you manually kick off a full scan. I don't know what their remote admin stuff is like because I'm never used it.

Comment: Don't strawman me (Score 1) 115 115

You're ridiculous. "Oh, I can just walk into a major bank

Only your stupid strawman is ridiculous, I'm suggesting that if you WORK at a major bank and you are responsible for their backups then part of that is being able to do bare metal recovery AND walk others through the process.
Yes, your strawman is stupid, but I didn't suggest anything remotely like your imaginary friend that you are shouting at and I have to admit that I think it's a very childish way to act.

While perhaps I should have been clearer and stated that with AMANDA you don't have to rely on dd and tar, the system is built in such a way that you can get by with as little as that if you have to in an emergency instead of installing and configuring that AMANDA software on a new machine first. While I wasn't clear enough I very much object to your over-reaction to that misunderstanding.

an artifact from my past whose knowledge and experiences are a subset of mine

With respect - professional engineer here, guy with a HR granted title of engineer there. You really should choose your insults a bit more carefully. I'm sure you have plenty of skills I do not have but to me IT in general is a subset of what I was doing last century, so you have only succeeded in making me laugh by puffing yourself up.

Comment: Re:Sometimes you want the opposite - eg. (Score 1) 512 512

That's kind of my point.
Sometimes more important stuff has to be done before rendering something on the screen. Typically the thing that delays rendering (and everything else) is an IO task and often the user actually wants that to finish before they see anything. Sometimes it isn't related to what they want to see and that's where is gets annoying.
IMHO the idea of rendering before all else is why we get such braindead and counterproductive behaviour such as the control panel refreshing a few times before you can click on anything. It should have a high priority but it's not the only thing going on that the user wants to happen, otherwise you get insane race conditions like that control panel which a programmer from the 1960s could have pointed out as a bad idea.
I think it's better to wait and render once instead of rendering five or six times giving the user misleading information and slowing the whole thing down. We get fucked GUIs in 2015 purely due to poor programming practice led by poor assumptions since the hardware can deliver very fast rendering once we've decided what the user can see. It's not just MS Windows, it's really disappointing to compare an older gnome desktop on something like Centos5 to the current gnome - it goes from rock solid to the sort of thing that inspires complaints like yours about window drawing priority. Fluxbox or similar running applications not based on the new gtk+ on those same problematic machines go back to being rock solid.
So it doesn't seem to be X or the kernel, pushing things back on the application and library developers to get their shit together and give X something to render before the user gets pissed off with the wait.

Comment: Re:Security team (Score 1) 512 512

That's really funny in a sad sort of way.
Not quite so slow as that (despite being called "slowaris") is the boot time for Sun servers that was made fun of in an inside joke on in the Stargate TV series. They have less than a minute to get the computer back online to get the gate open or they all die, then the scene changes to a screen showing the very start of a Sun sparc boot sequence - clearly they are utterly fucked at that point since it's going to be minutes of system checks before even the keyboard goes live.

The major difference between bonds and bond traders is that the bonds will eventually mature.