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Comment Re:Wait, they shipped the private key? (Score 1) 65

And then Dell's software re-enables it, or reinstalls it if you delete it. And if you remove the software that does the reinstall and ever factory-reset your PC, it in turn gets reinstalled. It's like malware, except that it's from a commercial vendor.

Unless you... you know... follow the instructions Dell provided to remove it properly or get the update that fixes this bug.

Definitely a real dumbass move on Dell's part, but this happens in all big companies; someone thinks they're doing a really great thing by simplifying some process without giving any thought to the security ramifications.

Comment Removal Instructions (Score 1) 91

1. Go to your Services... either run "services.msc", "compmgmt.msc" or "Open Services" from Task Manager.
2. Stop the Dell Foundation Service
3. Browse to c:\Program Files\Dell\Dell Foundation Services directory and delete the Dell.Foundation.Agent.Plugins.eDell.dll file
4. Launch Certificate Manager by running "certmgr.msc"
5. Browse to "Trusted Root Certificates \ Certificates"
6. Locate the eDellRoot certificate and delete it.
7. Restart your Dell Foundation Services. Voila... doesn't come back after a reboot.

Comment Re:Test your system. (Score 1) 91

It's worth noting that my Alienware 15 and my E7240 don't have any such cert on them. Both are still OEM builds... though the AW15 has been upgraded to Windows 10 while the E7240 is still running 7 (because I actually like to get work done on that :)

Just also tested my Venue 11 Pro and it DOES have the cert. Interesting.

Comment Re:St. Louis (Score 1) 464

That's fair, but I can name a couple of fun places around there like Scarecrow (nice pub, great food and drinks), Miller's Crossing (a bit further up Olive) and now there's Charlie Gitto's there too... though that's usually not one of my go-to's. There's also Clancy's a bit further down Clarkson (Kehr's Mill and Clayton) that is a fantastic little pub to go drink at and order enough pork to make you not want to eat for a week.

I do agree Maplewood is good too... love the Crow's Nest, but I prefer The Grove or South Grand most of the time. I have found the Loop lacking recently; it's had the heart ripped out of it by too-high rents resulting in most of the actually cool places shutting down and being replaced with strip-mall specials. Even some of the old buildings now have been razed for new multi-use ugly pieces of crap so even the architectural heart has been ripped out of it. A few mainstays remain like Blueberry Hill, but the last couple of times I've been there the food has declined a lot in quality and the place feels like it's on a slow decline to shuttering as well.

Comment Re:St. Louis (Score 2) 464

Interesting. I live in St. Louis now (have done for about 20 years) and can't say enough good things about the job market here. No, you're not going to find tech jobs in any of the big tech companies, but there are a surprising amount of programming and infrastructure jobs always available around here.

Engineering companies seem to exist all over the place here, and while yes healthcare IT is its own beast there are definitely plenty of jobs around here for that. And you'd be surprised the number (and pay) of tech jobs at some of the manufacturing firms around town.

Yes, you've got some shady neighbourhoods, but they are the exception rather than the rule. It's worth bearing in mind that St. Louis county also has the richest township per-capita in the entire country (Ladue), and many of the neighbouring towns have benefitted greatly from this. Chesterfield, Creve Couer and Des Peres spring to mind as areas that have had a sort of renaissance during the last 5-10 years.

And night life... yeah the night-life downtown isn't so hot. I agree that Laclede's Landing used to be amazing but has suffered greatly from that hulking great casino. I don't go down there... the casino itself is not nice inside (they rarely are anyway) and the area around it has become a bit of a crime cesspool despite significant police presence. The places to go in St. Louis on the weekends have moved out of the downtown area to places like South Grand and the previously scary Vandeventer / Forest Park Parkway stretch (location of the new Ikea). Not to mention places like The Grove that can be amazing for nightlife. These are all South of the city, somewhat... and I'm really pleased to see this place picking up like this.

Yes, you can also go out to the county for a very different feel... Chesterfield is still decent so long as you stay out of the Valley (the new outlet malls have really ruined it for me) and there's also some pretty decent night life around Clarkson and 40. South Lindbergh is also good for night life just as it always has been... Helen Fitzgerald's is always good for a laugh. And the CWE while not as upscale as it used to be still has a pretty popping nightlife. If you're out looking to just get laid, there's still Westport (not quite so good) or Old St. Charles (definitely high on the list of "yep, that'll work").

No, generally the wages aren't phenomenal here, but the cost of living is amazing. I have a 3000 square foot house with easy access to I-44 and I-40 in the South City area near South Grand and I paid less for it than I would've paid for a place half this size anywhere in Denver. It doesn't hurt that it's over a hundred years old and has gorgeous character. Yeah, old houses aren't for everyone but I love living in a place that has been through so much.

Comment Re:St Louis (Score 1) 464

I don't have mod points or I'd mod you up despite being an AC.

I've lived in St. Louis for almost 20 years at this point and it's been really good to me. I earn good money, own a gorgeous 3000 square foot house in the South City area and am constantly surprised more people don't move here. It's not hard to find a tech job - no, you're not going to be working for Google or Apple or even Microsoft as a general rule (though the latter does have an office here for sales and consultant services) but there are plenty of programming and infrastructure jobs available. We have a very large engineering footprint, surprisingly so. Boeing has a huge engineering office up near the airport, and world-renowned engineering companies like Hunter, MiTek and Mark Andy are all headquartered here. Yes, they're not tech companies in the traditional sense, but they're all growing companies with pretty significant programmer and infrastructure teams that have to grow with the company.

I'm not going to say St. Louis is perfect; there's a lot of weirdness here from the segregation of county and city governments, and there's a definite segregation of population as well that tends to exacerbate the crime situation in certain areas. However, I love where I live and don't have much of an issue with crime. I also love the nightlife in town, the weather is actually quite reasonable with only a few weeks of real winter every year (yes, it gets cold but we don't get a lot of snow except in January usually) and there's always something going on that is cool and enjoyable. We have incredible parks (Forest Park is an amazing city park that's actually twice the size of Central Park) and a completely free science center and museums. There are also wonderful neighbourhoods to walk in and explore, and traffic is really almost a non-issue for anyone who's seen Denver or Austin traffic.

I will also say it's a great place to raise a family; reasonable cost of living and decent schools... mostly so long as you stay out of the city itself. But there are still some private schools that the tuition really isn't too bad, but it's worth noting most of them are religious schools if you have an issue with that.

Comment Re:This has been done before... (Score 1) 412

I have used arrangements like this when traveling for business. They're referred to these days as "Crash Pads"... you can usually search some local. They're often used by airline pilots who spend a certain amount of their time per month in a particular city... they get a Crash Pad which gives them a common place to sleep (and sometimes sleep with others...) that they're familiar with, a place they can keep some personal belongings and not run a lot of the risk or expense of hotels.

I've used places like this when out of town for more than a week at a time for more than two months at a time. They're often pretty reasonable and often are just a room in a house with several similar rooms for others. They're also usually available on a month-by-month basis and in my opinion are a lot nicer than a lot of the "extended stay" places. Plus, they tend to be in pretty decent areas for bars, highways and the like... and of course you can be more selective about the area you stay in because you're not tied to "hotel alleys".

Having said all that, not sure I'd live in a communal-living place like this. I tried it recently; spent two years living in a condo thinking I would enjoy the lack of maintenance on the exterior and the social benefits of having a clubhouse, communal gym, pool etc. After two years I decided that I didn't like it... I moved back into a house and I'm far happier because I can entertain friends a lot easier, I have extra bedrooms for guests (family and friends), and since it's a 3000 square foot house I no longer feel like my girlfriend and I are competing for space with my 15 year old... who pretty much has the entire top floor of the house to himself; there are two bedrooms up there with one of them having a futon which he often uses as a sitting room for his friends. Keeps him out of my hair :)

Comment Re:transient accommodation... (aka hotel) (Score 1) 412

There is also an in-between situation where you can be legally classified as a boarder/lodger even if you stay over 30 days. The distinction is if you occupy part of premises but whose occupation/residency is still under the control of the owner. For example, if you rent a room in someone's private house that doesn't have its own entrance. Or maybe the owner still vacuums your room periodically or provides laundry services for you or free breakfast, you might be a classified lodger/boarder instead of a tenant and sacrifice most tenant rights even though your stay is over 30 days...

I find this part of your (great, BTW) analysis of the laws surrounding rental properties and the like very interesting. I'm a landlord myself with a couple of single-family properties under my belt so I know all of this is accurate.

I just found this part interesting because it occurs to me that this kind of living arrangement might fall under that exact set of circumstances. If the common area is either communally maintained or maintained by the landlord it might fall under this sort of "grey area" law. Even lacking the actual presence of the landlord, it seems that if the "floor manager" either got discounted rent or was paid a salary for their work as the "social coordinator" (I hate that name BTW) then they could classify as a proxy for the landlord and therefore be classed as the "resident". Of course, the catch here is that at that point, evicting the SC would be very troublesome if they got out of hand, so vetting that person would be difficult and potentially risky to the endeavour.

What are your thoughts on that?

Comment Re:The time (Score 1) 55

It depends a lot on your use case.

I use my 360 all the time. It's right there on my wrist, so even while driving if I receive a notification that I've received a text message I can flip my wrist over and check the summary on my wrist to see if I need to respond to it, or if it can wait until I get to my destination. I don't need to pull my phone out of my pocket or retrieve it from my jacket that may be hanging in the back of my car (depending on where I put it). I get reminders of appointments and again I don't have to rely on my phone to do the same. In fact, because the alarm on my 360 is vibrate only I can actually turn the notifications completely off on my phone most of the time and I still know what's going on. Similarly, in a meeting when my phone rings I can immediately see who's calling at a glance and throw it off to voicemail. I also like the ability to use the microphone in my 360 to set timers, set an alarm, bring up the weather etc. For my use case, it works extremely well.

I also travel frequently enough that it's really nice when going through security and boarding the plane to have my boarding pass QR on my watch display instead of my phone. I know American Airlines app on Android Wear does this, not sure about others (I've flowing pretty much exclusively American since I got my 360 a year ago).

I'll also note that because I'm not turning my phone on every time there's a notification or I want to know the time, my battery life on my phone actually increased when I moved to a smartwatch.

As far as charging every night, that's less of a problem than you might think. I don't wear my watch to bed, so I have my Moto 360 charging base sitting on my nightstand right next to the cable for my phone. Instead of setting my watch on the nightstand itself, I set it on the charging base and voila... no problems. It's no more a chore than setting it down, really. Yes, it can be frustrating if you are traveling and forget the base, but that's also true of forgetting charging cables for any of your other devices. So far it hasn't been a problem. Battery life also isn't half bad on the 360; I can get about 30 hours of tested time out of mine... given that I charge it nightly that's pretty bloody impressive and I have no complaints about it.

I do agree though that this is still a nascent industry... people haven't really found that killer app for a smartwatch yet, but for people like me who are natural early adopters, techies and people who just like stuff like this I think there's still a market.

Comment Re:Grade 2 Titanium Casing (Score 2) 55

Interestingly, I work with pilots, real professional pilots, and they seem drawn to TAG Heuer. Don't know why, but it is what it is.

Well, there's a couple of things at work here. First there's cachet; the Tag Heuer brand is widely recognized among pilots as being "the best". Part of that in truth is the heavy marketing TH did in aviation magazines showing lots of pilots with their TH watches especially during the 1970's and 1980's (though it continues to this day along with Breitling).

Second thing at work is simple visibility. The TH watches have always been designed to be high contrast and easy to read. That's surprisingly important in a cockpit when time is the essence of navigation and you're in turbulence. Try reading your watch while swinging your arm in random directions and you get a feel for it... high contrast is key.

Now, the truth is the second thing is almost irrelevant today with navigation electronics in anything larger than about 6 or 8 seats and more than one engine... but if you're flying a single engine craft then there's always the risk of losing all your electronics in an alternator/generator failure so you're usually expected to be spending your time between nav points plotting your course on your paper map and using your watch to keep track. Since all pilots start from single engine Cessnas and the like, this idea of "I must have a watch I can read at all times" is pretty well ingrained... and those who have actually had an electrical failure en-route probably will never be separated from their watches. Especially if you're flying in instrument conditions a good map and an easy-to-read watch can actually save your life.

Comment Re:No product (Score 3, Interesting) 198

HP hasn't had interesting product in living memory. The closest they came was buying WebOS and making a tablet, but they couldn't even follow through on that one. I'm not sure there was a future in that anyway, but at least if they'd followed through it would be something to move forward with.

True on the consumer side, but on the enterprise/datacenter side they were producing some pretty interesting products in the last few years that were horribly marketed and/or sold. My personal favourite was the HP Moonshot which was a hyper-converged blade architecture and potentially one of the most interesting things in large-scale computing in years. However, it was hobbled by terrible marketing, and requiring you to have the solution architected (at your cost, mind) by HP's techs rather than allowing you to just buy the chassis and blades. I went through that process and it was such a pain in the ass that we ended up buying Cisco UCS (which was its own set of pains in the ass I won't get into).

I think they did ease up that requirement for architecture, but I know myself and a lot of other people were really put off by the sales technique; like they were saying we were too dumb to know our own workload requirements and therefore they wanted to charge us for their service folks times to come architect it for us. They were acting like they had no competitor... and in that sort of density they sort of didn't when it was first unveiled. But tech moves quickly, and at the time it was felt that the kind of density Moonshot was offering was a nice to have and not a necessity, so most savvy IT managers and admins went with UCS or Dell's M1000e, and later started looking at platforms like Nutanix and Simplivity for the same workloads.

Comment Re:So? (Score 1) 259

Well, take into a account I grew up in Belfast. Getting mugged by thugs was a risk I ran every time I walked out the door... you learn how to deal with it. Generally, don't carry much cash and only carry one of either a debit card or credit card at any one time... that way you always have a back up. If you're approached and threatened then generally I carry a "sacrificial 20" in my wallet that I will hand to someone, showing them clearly I have nothing else in my wallet. Typically this is enough for them to leave you alone... sometimes they'll take the entire wallet but so long as you don't have too expensive a wallet they usually don't want it or will dispose of it quickly. Drivers licenses are no use to them, so often a wallet will be found with the license intact as well as credit cards because they assume you're going to cancel them as soon as you're attacked.

They're much more likely these days to want your cellphone... and I'll hand that over quite gladly. I have it insured so it'll be replaced, the storage is encrypted and the phone will lock immediately when I tap the power button. Yay... they get a 2 year old Moto X for their trouble. They're more likely to be happy with the 20.

I've walked around Ferguson, MO and Belfast with all of these "safeguards" in place. Worst I've ever had in my life was threatened at gunpoint, and so long as you treat them with respect and just hand over what they ask for it's never been an issue. The irony of course is that the attack I had happened Irvine, CA... supposedly the safest city in America in recent years (attack happened in 2013). I have been threatened once in St. Louis and handed over my $20... I just treated said attacker with respect and handed him the $20 as he asked. No fuss, no argument. That was probably a decade ago.

Comment Re:So? (Score 1) 259

A bit of both.

Generally we buy groceries two to three times a week. You can easily carry the majority of a week's groceries so long as you bring your own better quality bags rather than the rather crappy plastic bags they have at most grocery stores. Plus, there's the reusable aspect... so win on being even greener than just not using your car. To be honest we could probably do it only once a week and be fine, but my son likes to buy his own groceries; he's 15 and likes the independence, it gives him exercise, and he likes to cook for himself. As a result I usually haven't bought what he wants to cook with, so he walks up to the grocery store on his own.

Yes, there are some things a neighbourhood grocer sometimes doesn't have. I buy a very specific dog food for example in a big bag... I buy that because otherwise I have to deal with "Siberian Husky Intestinal Turmoil"... the initials say it all. This I buy once every 4 weeks or so, and the place that stocks it is about 15 miles away. I could probably do it on the bus, but since I do actually drive a lot at work I can usually drop by while I'm passing through that area or visiting a nearby customer to pick up that dog food. But as a general rule a local grocer will have what you need, and often it's more local produce like eggs, chickens etc. that come from local farms.

In addition, we have two farmer's markets weekly near here; one in Soulard (about a 2 mile walk) and one in Tower Grove Park (about a mile)... so I end up eating a lot of fresh local stuff rather than the big-box store crap.

Moving here has had a massively positive impact on my health and well-being. I eat better, I exercise more and psychologically I find it less draining than the funk I descended into while living in the 'burbs.

The trouble with a lot of self-made men is that they worship their creator.