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Comment: Re:Lots more from AS400/OS400 (Score 1) 445 445

It's a bit hard to explain, and I really don't mean that in a patronising way. I guess I meant it in the way that you can't flag a non-executable file with permissions that could make it executable.

OS400/IBM i/whatever they call it now has a very robust object model and security system. A file can only be flagged "executable" when the system is happy to call it so, e.g. it's been successfully compiled. You can't just add ".exe" onto the end of a (for example) specially crafted mixed text+binary file in the hope of causing a problem, you can't patch binaries directly, and you have zero access to the binaries of the operating system, except of course via patches and upgrades sent from IBM.

My statement was a bit simplistic, sorry 'boot that.

Comment: Lots more from AS400/OS400 (Score 1) 445 445

The hardware abstraction is a fantastic feature for a growing business - upgrade your hardware across different processor groups, and you don't have to re-compile your software.

OS400 has a compilable control language, and a command creator. Take your own utilities (equivalent to your favourite scripted/powershell jobs), compile them, then create a parameter-accepting command out of them, with optional menu-driven screens and context help.

DB/2. Not the best, but it's inbuilt, and accessible with system utilities/calls, using any language on the system, including control language.

Object-oriented - everything is an object, and you can't "accidentally" execute something that isn't a program.

Somewhat more sensible command abbreviations than *nix. For example, "display" commands always start with DSP, e.g. display system status is dspsyssts, display object is dspobj, etc.

You'd be correct if you said many operating systems have these features, but they've been present on the AS400 since 1988, and are very mature/stable. I live in hope that IBM or someone more talented than I will release OS400 for x86.

Comment: IBM freezer adjunct (Score 1) 210 210

I bought my ex-employer's IBM AS/400 E35 for $10, including the following:
processor board (now hanging on my office wall)
memory boards
various I/O boards, e.g. ethernet, 5250, DASD controller, etc
hard drives
cooling fans
power supplies
service processor

After taking it all apart, I used two of the cooling fans connected in series with my 24 volt refrigerator power supply. Directed the fans at the 'fridge's fins and cut the compressor run time by about 40%

Comment: Re:Horray for Taylor Swift. (Score 1) 368 368

Why doesn't Apple offer to pay the royalties for the 3-month trial period?

Consumers get their free trial, and many, if not most will sign up for the service.

Labels/artists will get their royalties, and maybe even see an increase in income afterwards when the service really takes off (assuming that it follows the success of iTunes music). Ditto Apple's income.

After all, who paid U2 for the free copies on everyone's iTunes?

Comment: Re:I wonder... (Score 4, Insightful) 277 277

The toshiba laptops in my supplier's catalogue nearly all come with "Windows 7 32/64bit pre-installed. Also supplied with Windows 8/8.1 media"

Now, why would Toshiba go to the extra effort to pre-install what is effectively a downgrade, unless 1. customers are demanding it and 2. it's a selling point - "you don't have to downgrade, we've already done it for you!"

Comment: Re:Meh... (Score 1) 255 255

If I was interviewing someone for a job, and they were able to show me examples of their work that were superior to any of the other interviewees, but executed in a different toolset, e.g. we use Adobe, but the applicant used Final Cut Pro, Vegas, or even ffmpeg, I would offer that person both the job and training.

It's not about the tools, it's about the result.

Comment: Re:'bout time. (Score 1) 90 90

My storage tanks are also the settling tanks - the pickup for household supply is about 5cm above the floor of the tank, all the dust and bird poop just settle to the bottom, and I have that cleared out every couple of years. No other treatment. It sounds icky, but I prefer to think of it as keeping my immune system active and healthy, plus I'm getting lots of minerals. My last blood test showed all mineral levels good, except for slightly low calcium - so I have to east more cheese, dammit.

Seriously, though - we don't tend to get sick, and we HATE the taste of treated town water when we've had to buy it in.

Comment: Re:'bout time. (Score 1) 90 90

I understand there's different rules in different states about rainwater harvesting, but surely if you have a "dry" cabin, i.e. no piped water supply from the local mains, you'd want to catch the water falling on your roof?

If you're in a rural area, and not near any other major source of air pollution, surely the rainwater is potable?

I've been living on rainwater for almost 20 years, we only buy a truckload when the dry season lasts longer than usual. We could overcome that with another tank or two (currently have almost 50K litres of storage).

Comment: Re:Hire That Programmer Immediately! (Score 1) 456 456

"Other option is the system just does a reset every x days."

Makes sense - reset at 9am on a Saturday (few or no students or staff around) , and you'll know by midday if the reset failed, giving you the rest of the weekend to get started on a fix.

All the simple programs have been written.