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Comment: Re:This doesn't sound right (Score 5, Insightful) 232

by caspper69 (#26765487) Attached to: Flash Mob Steals $9 Million From ATMs

The article says over $9,000,000 was stolen using only 100 cards in 49 cities in a 30 minute period. That, boys and girls, is $90,000 per card. The article says the limits on the cards were overridden, using them to make withdrawals in multiple increments of $500 or so. $90,000 / $500 is 180 withdrawals in a 30 minute period, or 6 withdrawals per minute.

This article doesn't pass the basic sniff test. It reeks of either disinformation or seriously bad math.

Yes, but it doesn't say how many copies of each card they made.

Comment: Re:Long Mode is so overrated (Score -1, Troll) 848

by caspper69 (#26402231) Attached to: Windows 7 Beta Released To Public After Delay

"I still can't believe there will be a 32-bit version."

I still can't believe people's obsession with Long Mode.

Well, actually, I can, simply because 64 is larger than 32, and thus 64-bit equates to "better" in the eyes of lots of people. But lots of people are fools, too.

But seriously, the majority of computer users have absolutely no need for Long Mode. They do things like browse the web, forward email, watch YouTube, and look at porn. You barely need Protected Mode for that.

The scenarios benefiting from Long Mode would be:

  • Servers
  • IT lab/admin types who want to run multiple concurrent VMs with large memories
  • Engineering workstation users who actually need to work with datasets larger than 2^32 bytes (4 GiB)

That's about it, really.

Most people are concerned solely with the amount of memory Windows reports in the System Properties dialog, and get their panties in a bunch over 700 MB or so of "missing" RAM. While I can understand wanting one's OS to be able to use all the RAM one paid for, most of these people aren't actually ever going to use that much of RAM. They just want their number to be bigger, because that obviously reflects on the size of their testicles. That's why they bought 4 GiB of RAM in the first place.

But even then, Long Mode is not needed to win the penis-length contests. Proper support for PAE would solve the problems. Just about any Intel-compatible CPU made in the past ten years supports PAE. With PAE, the processor can directly address up to 64 GiB of RAM in i386 Protected Mode, even though each user task (process) is still limited to a 4 GiB virtual address space. But it's very rare for a single task to actually need that much.

Of course, on Win i386, it's a little worse than that. Processes are limited to 2 GiB of user address space (with the kernel having the same 2 GiB in every process). But even 2 GiB is a lot of memory. Even Firefox only needs half a gig or so. ;-)

Win i386 actually uses PAE, sort-of. It needs to obtain the NX (No Execute) bit in page tables, for "DEP" (Data Execution Prevention). But Win i386 still limits physical addresses to under 4 GiB to keep crappy drivers from crashing the system. Since Microsoft's all about driver signing these days, they could just add an flag to the driver signature indicating it's qualified to work above 4 GiB, and have an OS boot option or something which allowed all memory to be used. Refuse to load PAE unqualified drivers in that mode.

Meanwhile, Long Mode is not without drawbacks. Long Mode, for those who don't know, is the processor mode AMD introduced which enables native 64-bit virtual addressing. But when in Long Mode, the processor can't do 16-bit Virtual Mode at all. There's still a lot of Win16 code floating around in the Windows world, sadly. Long Mode also means potential compatibility issues with crappy 32-bit code. Sure, it's crappy code, but I've found most code is crappy code. There can be performance costs, too (64-bit everywhere means more stuff than 32-bit most places), although they're minor and may be offset by equally possible performance gains (instruction architecture improvements such as more general-purpose registers).

Since this is Slashdot, I have to mention that Linux i386 supports PAE just fine, and has no problem working with more than 4 GiB of RAM, making Linux x86-64 even less interesting than Win x86-64. Linux also doesn't manage memory the same way as Windows, so the user/kernel split doesn't apply. So Linux x86-64 has all the compatibility problems of Long Mode, with even fewer benefits.

Wow, this is the most uninformed, ignorant drivel I've ever read on Slashdot (and that's a feat).

You must've missed just a few things while reading, because you're not even close to being correct in anything you just said.

In fact, anyone here who read this shit is now stupider for having read it.

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