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Comment Re:Wiimote support built-in (Score 2) 165

From the Changelog linked to in the article...

1.3. Filesystem barriers enabled by default in Ext3
Hard disks have a memory buffer were they temporally store the instructions and data issued from the OS while the disk processes it. The internal software of modern disks changes the order of the instructions to improve performance, which means that instructions may or may not be committed to the disk in the same order the OS issued them. This breaks many of the assumptions that filesystems need to reliably implement things like journaling or COW, so disks provide a "cache flush" instruction that the OS uses when it needs it. In the Linux world, when a filesystem issues that instruction, it is called a "barrier". Filesystems such as XFS, Btrfs and Ext4 already use and enable barriers by default; Ext3 supports them but until this release it did not enable them by default: while the data safety guarantees are higher, their performance impact in Ext3 is noticeable in many common workloads, and it considered that it was an unnaceptable performance regression to enable them by default. However, Linux distros like Red Hat have enabled barriers by default in Ext3 for a long time, and now the default for mainline has been changed aswell.

In other words: if you use Ext3 and you note performance regressions with this release, try disabling barriers ("barriers=0" mount option).


Submission + - Dennis Ritchie, kill -9 (

dcowart writes: ""Computer scientist Dennis Ritchie is reported to have died at his home this past weekend, after a long battle against an unspecified illness. No further details are available at the time of this blog post.""

Comment Re:Scroll lock! (Score 1) 939

It used to be that when you 'scroll lock' a linux console it would hang the machine. The kernel buffers would fill with messages to be dumped to the console and eventually would run out of memory and the machine would hang. Toggle the scroll lock off and it would unlock, dump tons of messages to the console, and things would start running again.

This was especially problematic on KVM's that used the scroll lock key to switch between machines. It would be a week or too and then a server would just stop responding. Ugh.

Comment Re:iPod Touch (Score 2, Interesting) 169

Yes, you can actually. I got the apple earphones(needed to replace old ones) & mic set from my local mac store and I hooked them up to an ipod touch with the skype app and was able to make calls easily. This was using only 802.11b/g connections that were open where ever I was located. The biggest problem was spotty wifi connectivity and coverage. Also since I ride a motorcycle I was more worried about having access to emergency services, so I didn't go with it as a solution to totally replace my cellphone.

I could see that if it were economical, you could have all calls go to skype & skype-voicemail and talk when you're close to a wifi connection. While also having a prepaid cell phone for emergency calls. I was very close to doing this but since I'm on a family plan and my cell phone is only $10 extra it wouldn't really save me anything to go that route.



F5 Fires Back On Open Source SSL Accelerator 120

Random Feature writes "In response to Build an Open Source SSL Accelerator, in which o3 magazine detailed how to build a solution comparable to an F5 BIG-IP 6900 on the cheap, F5 Fires Back claiming it's not as cheap as it appears and pointing out the potential performance implications of a 'cobbled together set of components designed to mimic similar functionality.' The discussion on the performance of the Open Source solution based on Opteron RSA operation processing capabilities brings into question the validity of the 'more SSL TPS for cheaper' argument presented by o3."
Role Playing (Games)

Managing Player-Created Content In City of Heroes 43

Superhero MMO City of Heroes recently went live with its 14th expansion (release notes), one of the main features of which is the Mission Architect, a system to allow players to create their own quest content and then submit it to be implemented into the game. Now, Joe Morrissey of the City of Heroes team has written an article about how they plan to manage the content that players create. "You have to decide how draconian you want to be. The more hardcore you are, the fewer people who will see inappropriate content, but you expose yourself to potential grief voting. Grief voting is when a player flags perfectly acceptable content as inappropriate just because it's fun. If it only takes a single vote to eliminate content from the game, clicking that button is going to be the game for a lot of players. You don't want perfectly good content getting pulled because someone's a jerk."

Comment Re:harder than it seemed (Score 3, Informative) 576

We have deep freeze as well here where I work. We have it turn off the pc's at 11pm. It turns them all on at 2:55am unfrozen, windows update runs at 3am (with the auto-install) also symantec anti-virus runs, and at 4am it refreezes the machines and shuts them back down. Wake-on-Lan will need to be setup on the PC's but this system works very well for patching & updating the machines while also keeping them frozen from mal-ware.

Let your IT guys know, it should be that simple... at least as far as freezing & updates.

Comment Re:Surprised? (Score 1) 159

Sun not so much, rumors are that IBM may buy them... HP is only alive b/c people are still using HP/UX and Tru64 for things.

IBM learned long ago the money is in selling support contracts. None of the other vendors ever seemed to really grasp that idea.

Comment Re:I've never understood the UNIX world's fascinat (Score 4, Insightful) 267

How does it work for searching though? If I just have my "freespace" file and my pointers to records, does a search for some piece of user requested data have to hit every record or is there a hash somewhere for the data contained in the record? You don't mention it in your description.

It seems that the biggest advantage to a relational DB is that the syntax for accessing it is well known, SQL. It has a human read-able interface and while sometimes whonky to work with for complex operations, it provides the simplest cross-platform way to access data. I don't need to know which data blocks hold the data, I just ask the database for them "SELECT slashdotid, name FROM users where slashdotid 20000"... and I get rows of data.

Could I just read it from a file? Yes. Would it be simpler? Maybe. But what if I have 200001 records, then I have to do some magic sorting in my program, and I have to manage memory for them, and disk space, etc. It is simpler to let the DB handle that mess and I just ask for the data I need.

It breaks up the process of programming into data storage and data manipulation/presentation. DB's for storage, my bad python for manipulation and presentation.


Comment Re:Just do what you did... (Score 5, Insightful) 201

First Black President, that's why this is important. I plan to watch it. This is how far we as a nation have come in the 60 years since the civil rights movement and the Jim Crow laws that held black people down for so long. More than just another president being inaugurated this is a statement that anyone can achieve anything they push for. Yes, I'm a flag waving optimist about this but having grown up in an inner city and having seen the devastation of being poor in America, It makes me hopeful that things can change for the better.

This is the kind of thing that can give an inner city kid a shred of hope that he can get out of the slums and into something better.

I'm starting to get all preachy now, but that's why this is something kids should watch.

Comment Re:I did predict the suckage. (Score 1) 109

I'm going to second that. Wrath is very nicely done. The graphics are visually arresting. The quests aren't just kill six snow moose, it's go kill 10 crazed dwarfs and crack open their skulls to see if their brains are rotten... and I'm all for the skull cracking.

Blizz learned a lot from the BC expansion and definitely made this one better. I am a fan of WoW and have been playing for three years now. I often take breaks from it to play steam games, but no other MMO has offered anything remotely like it in terms of ease of use, that is, it doesn't act like it hates the player. But this is an AoC article so I'll stop being a slavering fan-boy now.

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