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Comment Re: Did you try suspend? (Score 1) 341 341

Yep, he did although my first thought was "I'm not making a lot of money and don't want to plunk for UPS". In fact, this is a desktop, so there's no battery except for the CMOS of course. I don't trust surge protectors either. There's no substitute for powering down quickly when danger threatens from the mains.

Comment Re:BitLocker is Ultimate-only and Ultimate is gone (Score 1) 247 247

Sorry, I don't know anything about BitLocker. But if we're talking about getting Windows 7 with a new PC, I think it's fair to say that's a relatively minor limitation compared to everything you'd get stuck with moving up to 8/8.1/10, and you can still get Win 7 Enterprise on your new PC if it's an absolute must-have for your particular needs.

Comment Re:End of preinstalled Windows 7: October 2014 (Score 1) 247 247

From your own source:

Windows 7 Professional ... Not yet established **

** Microsoft will provide one year of notice prior to the end of sale date.

The consumer Win 7 Home line isn't generally shipped preinstalled any more, but the Win 7 Pro line used by power users, small businesses and the like is still available in the normal way, with many suppliers offering it if you ask.

Comment Re:What you can pay for instead... (Score 1) 247 247

We can only hope. For a long time, Microsoft has been the business you turned to when you wanted to get stuff done. They were notable for not having the effectively enforced upgrade cycles of Apple, Google, and most of the major Linux distributions, and instead provided systems you could count on using, with support for essential bug/security fixes, for periods measured in years or decades, not months if you were lucky. I want that Microsoft back, and they would surely get more money from me and my companies than the Microsoft we have today is going to.

Comment Re:Win10 is worse than Win8 (Score 4, Insightful) 341 341

About the only quibble I have with what you're saying is "stop updates". Instead I'd like it to be easier to customize updates. I don't want to miss patches. Once I've got a setup I like, I want it to stay the same except I want security issues patched. I want to be able to segregate security patches from "features". Also, I'm not sure why Windows 8.1 has this whole business of working on the update while it's in the shutdown process. That's really annoying if I'm shutting down to go away for a while, or because of storm activity. I want to shutdown NOW. Not in 10 minutes. Also, don't auto-shutdown or nag me. Just put a RED WARNING security patch update icon on the task bar or something. I know it's there. I'll do it when I'm done with other stuff.

Comment The next Vista / Metro! (Score 1) 247 247

There is nothing "free" about Windows 10, and I predict this will come back to bite Microsoft like Vista and whatever that "Metro" thing was.

I don't use Ubuntu, but this offers great potential for them, and for the average non-tech savvy computer user, it offers the "cleanest" experience.

Comment Re:Privacy in danger (Score 1) 341 341

In densely populated areas, the logical endgame is for devices to create their own mesh networks, independent of any active networking you might provide to them. Then all it takes is any path from your device to the mothership for your data to leak.

Homes with built-in Faraday cages and their own internal repeaters with firewalls for signals you actually want to let through is one possible technological response, but obviously worthless the moment someone creates a path outside the cage, for example by ever leaving the house.

A more practical alternative would be finally passing laws to regulate this area and protect privacy in meaningful ways in the context of 21st century technology, while still allowing beneficial applications of these technologies for those who don't want to be digital hermits. Given the modern reality that even if you opt out of everything those around you might not, the most reliable ways to prevent abuse of data by corporations are to ensure that it is not profitable to do so and/or the executives responsible for setting the policies will go to jail as a result.

Comment Re:Slashdot crying wolf again... (Score 1) 164 164

By the time you finished with all the lawsuits/etc the addresses wouldn't be useful. We need to get past IPv4. Putting it off for another few months won't help that.

That said, there are a lot of things about IPv6 that are rather annoying. There aren't really a lot of good DHCP options if you want to use NAT, and if you don't want to use NAT then anytime your router prefix changes the external IPs of all the hosts on the network change. That is a fairly big change from how things work today, and I think most early adopters don't notice because they tend to have static IPs, but that is unlikely to be the case once it is mass-adopted.

Comment What you can pay for instead... (Score 2) 247 247

I hope that what you're missing is the businesses that supply professional laptops will continue to offer them with Windows 7 and no junkware for the foreseeable future. They'll cost more than all the consumer junk that is subsidised by pre-installed promo junk and spyware and so on, but if you want a system that actually works in your interests, someone will probably sell you one at a viable price unless some sort of legal agreement actively prevents it.

I also hope that this is finally the must-get-worse-before-it-gets-better moment for all the nasty recent trends of never-finished software, built-in spyware in everything, and subscription everything. Something as big as Windows screwing as many people as it's presumably going to screw might actually bring enough people to their senses that the industry reconsiders the path it's been following lately.

As I've commented before, I don't see Microsoft themselves changing course again as long as Nadella is at the top. He is exactly the guy the board hires if this is what they want to happen. However, given that Win10 is already looking less appealing than Win8 and people are still only just finding out all the ways it's a mess, the current generation of leadership at Microsoft may be short-lived if they can't turn avert the impending train wreck very quickly.

Comment Re:So what's up with those bitcoins? (Score 1) 93 93

Traditional currencies have inflation because they are printing money faster than old bills get destroyed.

The amount of "printed currency" in circulation has almost nothing to do with the size of the money supply. It's amazing how many gold/bitcoin fans don't understand this. Heck, the US recently concluded "QE", in which a couple of trillion dollars were created by the Fed without any of it being physically printed.*

When you deposit $US with a US bank, in a savings account or CD, it can loan out 100% of your deposit. If banks offered BTC-denominated savings accounts, they'd work the same way. If you're thinking "but wait, that means there wouldn't be enough bitcoins in existence to allow everyone to withdraw their deposits", then congratulations, you understand how banking works.

There's only ~$1.3 T in physical US currency, but there is ~$10 T in total bank deposits (of various kinds). That wouldn't change if we adopted gold or bitcoins as the national currency.

*To further complicate things, the money supply actually didn't grow during that time, as bank deposits with the Fed grew at about the same rate. When the banks start finding investments better than the rate the Fed pays, we'll start seeing the inflationary effects - it's a very new idea by the Fed, and time will tell how crazy it was.

Comment Re:Found? (Score 4, Funny) 93 93

Given the mass incompetence of how Gox was run, that's the least surprising thing. They had paper wallets scattered around the city that that only Mark knew the password to.

So, you're telling me that Magic the Gathering Online Exchange stored its assets by printing them on paper cards? I never saw that coming. I hope they were at least kept in protective sleeves!

Comment When to upgrade? (Score 1) 172 172

So, my sense is that Windows 10 is the "odd-numbered" version that I'll eventually end up upgrading to. Right now I do most of my serious stuff on linux, and maintain a decent windows 7 PC mainly for gaming purposes (since I still have many games that are not linux-compatible). I tend to view my windows PC more like a gaming console as a result.

So, when is the right time to upgrade? I suspect that it will be once DirectX 12 is available, stable, and in some kind of use. At the very least I'll want to wait until the rumor mill indicates that my graphics drivers (Radeon) are reasonably stable on Win10.

I'm also torn on whether to upgrade in place or just wipe and reinstall (especially since I'm still running my OS from the non-SSD drive in the system). Is installing Win10 from scratch supported, and free?

My guess is that it will be at least a few months before I'll be upgrading...

Comment Re:Don't buy the cheapest cable (Score 1) 351 351

The actual spec is behind a paywall, as with most tech specs, but Wikipedia says.

cable of about 5 meters (16 feet) can be manufactured to Category 1 specifications easily and inexpensively by using 28 AWG (0.081 mmÂ) conductors.[107] With better quality construction and materials, including 24 AWG (0.205 mmÂ) conductors, an HDMI cable can reach lengths of up to 15 meters (49 feet).[107]

You may be right, and this is just the physical consequence of the spec, but 28 AWG is quite thin wire. (One poster said his long cable has a booster, so maybe that's another way, but that's not "cheapest" either).

How can you do 'New Math' problems with an 'Old Math' mind? -- Charles Schulz