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Comment Architect != sysadmin (Score 4, Insightful) 117

An architect is someone who designs, implements and oversees the day to day progress of large(r) scale projects. You get to define who/what to buy and how to realize your vision. But no, you don't need access to the systems but you do need an overview of the entire infrastructure, you're an architect, not a builder/maintainer/owner, you get to see the site, you define future upgrades but you don't maintain the system(s), you surround yourself with others that do that job.

If you can't get a full picture of the network and systems without full admin access, your underlings are doing something wrong and it's time for you to kick them out or go on a major discovery/documentation project. If I were an architect, I'd make sure I have plans, diagrams and documentation on the entire picture first before embarking on a next project.

Comment Re:malware (Score 1) 117

Why aren't the nursing stations locked down? Why are they even running Windows? Why does your application require such high privileges?

The first thing to do would be to boot the ridiculous vendor requirements from the system(s) and either go with a decent system or build your own.

Comment Re:I drive an older car because it ISN'T smart (Score 1) 87

I don't know of (m)any cars that have active, continuous tracking (maybe Tesla's?) but you're also missing out on a great deal of safety features. Crashing a 10 yo car vs a current car will differ greatly in survivability. Not that a 10yo car is 'old' or in any way needs to be replaced but avoiding safety features on purpose seems idiotic.

Comment Re:Vintage, eh? (Score 1) 87

You're old. Historical plates are for car older than x-years old. At some point 2015 cars will be historical. Unless you want historical to mean 'of historical significance' but then you would have government officials deciding that list each year instead of spending time on important things.

Comment Doesn't mean people won't use them (Score 5, Insightful) 374

The main reason people don't want/use them is because they're too expensive:

in-vehicle concierge (43%): $350/y + voice/minute + data, easily adds up to $500/y+ for a device you use maybe 1h/day. On the other hand your mobile phone with Bluetooth has the same services for free (Siri, Hey Google, Cortana, ...)
mobile routers (38%): same problem, we already have data plans on our cell phones, if we want routers we wouldn't use our cars for it which are usually inconveniently parked for reception
automatic parking systems (35%): besides a few specific interactions, they are useless and/or broken. They still require you to press gas/brake pedals, they don't park any faster or better than doing it yourself
heads-up display (33%): distracting and useless information
built-in apps (32%): distracting and useless information and the ones you do use are generally too pricey or require one of the above connective features that are too expensive

Comment Re: Ignorance? (Score 1) 233

You can still have bad data or data that defies current collection methods. I

f you were to look at the universe in only visible (to us) spectra you'd come up with an entirely different model than having more data in other spectra.

Does that mean the old models are bad? No, they work to some extent. Newtonian physics works fine if you're just hitting a ball with another but it's hopelessly dated if you're modeling stars.

The problem is not bad data or bad models, it's that we simply don't understand every single interaction and that requires 'more math' to be heaped upon the rest. Just scrapping it and restarting is not necessary in most cases.

Comment Re:"Correct" Is Subjective (Score 1) 154

The first mistake is licensing something with that restrictive/punitive of a license. If I buy a license from a company, there is a contract and someone (most likely finance) should keep track of that. Additionally, that company should also keep track of it's documents before they sue you (a good lawyer will request discovery on said documents and if they can't be produced, the case pretty much goes away).

If you pay extra just for 'protection', it's extortion. Go with another company that doesn't do this or has an open license to their software.

Comment Re:Simple experiment-- (Score 1) 154

You are not legally covered for fuck-ups by the other entity.

They are only liable for the cost of the contract and that's it (if that). If they fuck up, they'll say sorry, they may pay you back your last few months to a year worth of fees and then, contractually their obligation is done. YOU as a company remain liable for YOUR data and YOUR clients. Also, if they figure out that it was one of your users that was in any way involved, the liability is pretty much shifted back to YOU.

Read these contracts, they're not what you think they are.

Comment LDAP? (Score 3, Interesting) 87

Just use a centralized solution that is configured to give access and authorization to assets, they exist, it's called LDAP and you can plug whatever the hell information you want in them, even the HR-only information (such as tax records etc). You then just need to make sure your roles are defined within your organization and HR knows about which roles to give to a person.

If you're talking about giving people root/wheel access to certain boxes even when LDAP is broken, then you can still use LDAP as a source to feed into eg. an ansible/puppet script (or whatever configuration management system you decide to use) that runs every few minutes/hours/days and inserts/revokes access for those sysadmins.

Comment Re: Senior IT management? (Score 1) 154

It's really not all that hard and MS charges $20/mo/account on the Enterprise side (once you integrate with your LDAP etc). Let's say you need 300 mailboxes, you're suddenly paying $1500-$6000/month + your time investment into setting up these mailboxes remains the same. That pays for a pretty nice system IMHO.

I have run several companies' mail server either on shared hosting or in-office (depending on the resources available) and it ends up costing almost nothing to run a system up to 500-1000 mailboxes, never been blacklisted (using reputable hosting providers that give a shit about their network and dedicated IP's or IP ranges), filters about 90% of SPAM (combination of expecting a modicum of correct SMTP behavior, using blacklists, DKIM/SPF, SpamAssassin and virus scanner).

IF the system stops responding in the middle of the night, e-mail isn't all that critical to be responding, e-mail servers hold on to undelivered mail. You go and fix it or you have your mail servers clustered, ready to take over (depending on the amount of money one wants to pump into it). Again, $1500/month pays for a really nice set of virtual servers or even a dedicated server.

Comment Senior IT management? (Score 2) 154

It's hard to explain who exactly should be in charge but IT staff should propose several solutions, their costs attached to it and the cost/benefits. There is never one solution and neither is 'cloud' a solution in and by itself. In the end, unless you're a small shop or require very small amounts of something, the 'cloud' is almost never the answer.

If you have 10 e-mail accounts, a hosted provider may look promising, but if you end up paying more for an e-mail solution in a month than you'd do buying your own hardware, you're doing it wrong.

We can predict everything, except the future.