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Comment Re:No, I do not understand (Score 1) 84

Sort of. Linux has DEP and a few other features (ASLR and SEHOP for example.) Redhat created ExecShield that can contribute. I don't know if PaX has been merged yet (haven't followed in quiet a while now) but it also does something similar. While not the same, they all provide different answers to the problem.

Then JIT languages come along and screw everything up. ;-)

  W^X is just one method OpenBSD championed, but it's not an exclusive technology.

Comment Re:Nothing? (Score 1) 429

Shouldn't feed the trolls, but it seems kind of fun sometimes.

Discovering the Higgs Boson doesn't suddenly mean that we now know everything there is to know about matter. All that did was verify a hypothesis that there was a particle that made it possible for Energy to become Matter and vice versa. We now know with certainty that the particle with a mass between 125 and 127 GeV/c2 exists, as predicted, and that it fits into our Standard Model as we were expecting a particle of that size would.

To suddenly expect that we should now be advancing scientifically at a rapid rate simply because we have confirmed the particle exists is nonsense. It took us 40 years between the time of the hypothesis being put forward by Higgs and his co-authors, until it was genuinely confirmed in 2012. In that time technology had to advance significantly for us to be able to get there. But that didn't stop people trying through out those 40 years. In the end, the largest man-made machine ever was created. A machine so massive it stretches across 2 countries and consumes more power than a large city. A machine that is itself at the very limits of what our current technology allows.

Your argument is like saying that the instant Yuri Gregarin got into orbit, he should have been able to land on the moon and make it back to Earth after taking a quick spin to visit our distant relatives on Mars.

Dark matter is just another thing we have yet to figure out. We still don't know what it is. We only know it exists because we can't account for the gravity it produces. But we can't actually measure it directly. Because we can neither see it, nor touch it, nor hear it, nor taste it, and but we can observe the effects it has on the space around it, we know it's there. Isaac Newton knew that something existed to make the apple fall to the ground, or the planets orbit the sun, but until he spent time studying it, he didn't know what gravity actually was. Same is true for Infrared light. Until Newton started playing with prisms near a thermometer on his wall, no one knew that infrared light existed.

So should we say that studying Dark Matter is a waste of time because we don't know what it is or what use it will be to us in the future? It makes up magnitudes more of the matter in the universe than all the matter we can actually see and account for combined. Yet we shouldn't try to learn about it and discover what it might be?

Maybe Dark Matter is the energy source of the future. We just don't know it yet because our own technology hasn't advanced to the point where we can figure it out. Just like we knew there was this particle 40 years ago that we had yet to account for in our standard model, but in the last 2 years we have now confirmed exists and are actually starting to understand what it really is.

You, Sir, are ignorant and should keep your mouth shut.

(Unless it is to ask questions.)

Submission + - Tesla's Fighting Back In Georgia

cartechboy writes: Elon Musk isn't just changing the way our cars work, no, he's changing the way we buy our cars too. At least, he's trying to. Musk and Tesla's biggest hurdle in the U.S. has been bypassing conventional dealerships and selling directly to customers. This concept is something that's illegal in many states thanks to a nationwide patchwork of decades-old franchise laws. Tesla's latest battle is taking place in Georgia where dealers allege that the start-up company is in violation of the state's franchise laws. Not surprsingly, Tesla's fighting back. To sell cars in the state Tesla had to agree to sell fewer than 150 vehicles directly to consumers in the state. Last week Georgia Automobile Dealers Association complained that Tesla sold 173 vehicles. Tesla hasn't publicly commented on how many vehicles it has sold in Georgia. We've seen time and time again how this story ends, and the writing is clearly on the wall for this case.

Comment Re:What's wrong with Windows Server? (Score 5, Insightful) 613

LOL. Maybe with the command line based log reader? Or maybe you have never used the last command to parse the binary log file which is wtmp either.

Have you ever had to monitor server logs remotely?

Explain to me how to easily set up an alert to trigger on an event in a binary log? I can handle that easily in a syslog text log, but I'd love to know how *you* easily do that with a binary log. Could you give me the awk script for it? No? How about just a simple regexp for locating a single type of event that I can have running against the stream of log data as it gets logged into the file?

Binary logs are basically useless to me. I cannot automate them in real time. I cannot filter them easily in a script. I essentially have to parse them manually, or dump them to text and then filter them. What a huge waste of time.

I can leave a script running against a syslog text log, tracking everything as it gets streamed into the file, and I can instantly trigger an alert against an event. Very easily. Very simply.

I cannot do that with systemd binary logs.

Comment Re:Lennart Poetterings rebuttal (Score 2) 613

Talking to a megalomaniac is a waste of time. You are not going to reach him, regardless of the validity of your arguments. The whole systemd discussion amply demonstrates this. This guy thinks he is Linus reincarnated and since he cannot do a new kernel, he has fixated on the next best thing.

Which worked out oh so well in the whole PulseAudio fiasco a few years ago.

You'd have thought that one thing alone would have taught Red Hat a thing or two about the guy they're trusting to manage the very core functionality of their primary business product.

Comment Re:What's wrong with Windows Server? (Score 5, Insightful) 613

By contrast, UNIX/LINUX servers are much more difficult to configure and generally require a lot more man-hours and a more experienced (and expensive) staff.

This is a fallacy. There are numerous studies that have shown that a single Unix admin is able to manage more Unix/Linux/BSD servers than a single Windows Admin. It is far more cost effective, in larger environments, to run Unix servers than Windows servers when it comes to ongoing maintenance. It is also well documented that a Unix/Linux server build can be online and running significantly faster than a comparable Windows build.

Simply put, how long does it take to get something like an Oracle DB up, running and usable on Windows vs Linux? What is the cost of that build, including the licensing and the time it takes to put together? I can image a Linux based server with only the stuff I need significantly faster than I can do the same in Windows Server 2012.

The fact that Windows Server is still able to survive on expensive license fees when Linux and BSD are free is pretty telling. Companies are doing a cost-benefit comparison and finding that they are saving more money going with the paid solution than the free solution.

No, generally cost has nothing to do with whether a company chooses Windows over Unix/Linux or not. Convenience plays a huge part in it. Most small and medium sized businesses probably don't even realise they have options. Windows is often picked as the default because that is what the kids from the past 20 years have been taught or all they've managed to pick up through school. Again, convenience and knowledge over cost.

It also comes down to ease of management. Its a lot easier to implement Active Directory for user and device management than to do the same with OpenLDAP. Many companies pick Windows because they can do simple tasks like manage users themselves and not need to pay an admin to do that kind of thing for them.

It is very similar to what you see happening on the desktop with the domination of easy-to-use and configure Mac and Windows over KDE or Gnome, except on the server-side it is mainly an issue of the ease of use for the system administrator, and the fact that a good Unix admin is much more expensive and harder to find than an MCSE certified admin.

A good Unix admin can manage a larger pool of servers, off-setting the cost of having to hire multiple Windows admins. However, the cost of Unix admins is not significantly different from the cost of Windows admins. In fact, most Unix Admins are also very capable Windows Admins and so you get a two-for when they're hired.

Easy-to-configure Windows and Mac are a strawman. Gnome and KDE are no more difficult to configure than Windows or Mac. The difference is in actually having taken the time to learn them. Arguably you have more control over the Gnome and KDE environments. What puts Windows up there is that through the 90s no one had a choice when buying from OEMs, so everyone learned the basics of Windows. That then bled into the 2000s where it was easier to stick with the devil you knew rather than learn everything over again.

It has very little to do with the cost of the systems and far more to do with people being comfortable with what they know. Look at how badly Windows 8.x and Windows Server 2012 are doing at the moment. They are such major changes that require significant relearning of some major fundamentals, that people are simply not switching to them. Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 still dominate the corporate/business market. People aren't upgrading to Win8/2012 for the same reason they're not switching to Linux. They have to make a significant effort learn how to use the systems.

Comment Re:What's wrong with Windows Server? (Score 4, Informative) 613

If it was just replacing the /etc/init.d mess, that'd be fine.

My main problem with SystemD is that it is turning into this massive black hole that's trying to replace many different systems in one. And not very well at that.

Why replace pam.d, crond, init, and add complexities like dbus in a single package that runs at PID1 when it doesn't need to? So now a single flaw in its crond could allow a vector that lets dbus provide a way to trick pam.d into letting users escalate their privileges? Sure, it hasn't happened yet, but when you start intertwining these apps into a single super app....

Worse, the logging it provides is next to useless. If I have a headless server with no GUI, how the hell am I supposed to read binary logs? It doesn't even give me useful information during the boot process. At least my old init scripts could do that much.

It completely goes against the core principles of UNIX in general. Do one thing, and do it damn well. Make it interoperable with other processes. Log to text. Configure with text.

I don't want this massive beast of a process that replaces my options. And I especially don't want one that isn't even very good at performing the original single task its supposed to be replacing, let alone all the franken-tasks its taken on.

If this were just about replacing init, I doubt I'd be anywhere near as bothered. But as an active admin, this bothers me significantly more than just having to redo my startup scripts.

Comment Re:What's wrong with Windows Server? (Score 1) 613

You still have to license RHEL if you intend to have support. I suppose if you don't mind going at it your own...

You're not licensing RHEL, you're licensing a support agreement for 12 months. There's a pedantic difference.

The difficulty with RHEL is that if you want to run it without support, you have to compile it yourself. They do not release binaries outside of their support agreements. Which is why CentOS (and others) exists in its current implementation.

Comment Re:Slash-doppers (Score 1) 194

I think you are confusing patent protection with copyright protection. Software is still covered by copyright law, and the licensing agreements you choose to put on your software product is still what defines how people can use your software product, and what their access to that software is.

If I write a program and release it under a license that does not allow access to the source code, and does not allow users to distribute it further, that is still perfectly valid. But if someone decides that they want to write their own software that does the same thing, as long as they do not use anything from my product, they are well within their rights to do so.

UNIX platforms have been around for 50 years and the model they use has become essentially a standard. But until recently, UNIX was costly and the licensing was rather prohibitive. So in the 1980s, this man decided that he'd like to write his own version of a UNIX-like platform, and release it freely and openly for everyone to use. That platform was GNU and the man that started it was Richard Stallman. GNU is now one of the most widely used platforms on the market. Even some UNIX vendors use some of the GNU utilities themselves. It also became the system that sits on top of the Linux kernel.

But while GNU replicates a lot of the functionality from UNIX utilities, it uses absolutely none of the code from UNIX. It was written independently to ensure that it was freely available to everyone.

That hasn't stopped UNIX platforms from continuing to be sold, or continuing to be innovative. But it has pushed UNIX vendor to improve their platform significantly to differentiate themselves from the free platforms.

Software Patents would not have allowed GNU to exist at all. Software patents are, without exception, patenting ideas rather than implementation. This means that if one entity holds a patent for an idea, no other entity can come up with an alternate way of achieving the same/similar end result. This gives the patent holder an extended monopoly on an idea and stifles innovation in the software industry.

Software copyrights allow you to release and protect your software from blatant copying, while still allowing people to improve upon and innovate beyond your original idea. Software patents do not.

Comment Re:Don't cheer yet (Score 1) 194

Completely pedantic of me, but relevant. In New Zealand a Bill is always a draft. There is no difference between a "draft bill" and a "bill." Once the Bill passes its 3rd and final reading in the House, it becomes an Act at which point it is law.

In regards to your comment about "Big Money," New Zealand is very small, but it doesn't really have the same problems with lobbyists that the US or other large nations do. In fact, the majority of lobbyists in New Zealand are Greenies and Climate Change doomsayers trying to save each and every tree, bug or animal. Well, them and media companies trying to get nasty copyright law changes made.

Fortunately, while NZ is based on the Westminster model of Parliament, but with Europe's MMP, its sufficiently different enough that its not quite so easy to game. And with only 120 Members of Parliament, lobbyists tend to have to convince an entire political party rather than just a few members with seats in the Parliament.

Comment Oracle's short term memory (Score 5, Insightful) 392

The whole reason Sun opened up Solaris in the first place was to try and get it a wider audience and more of a community around it. Linux was encroaching on Solaris as much as it was on any other Unix, if not faster.

Oracle will probably find that the only way they can sell Solaris is to bundle it as a database appliance OS or something stupid like that. Include the cost of Solaris with the cost of whatever software runs on top of it.

Solaris wasn't the healthiest until the OpenSolaris project gave it a significantly greater audience that allowed anyone to use it and get familiar with it. OpenSolaris sold Sun hardware and the proprietary Solaris. It is what kept Solaris from dead ending and stagnating.

Oracle will either realise this soon, or wait till its too late. This is essentially the first nail in the Solaris coffin after Sun managed to get it off life support.

Fare thee well, old friend.


Submission + - NZ rules out software patents in patent overhaul (computerworld.co.nz)

Korgan writes: In what must be a first in the face of ACTA and US trade negotiations pressure, a Parliamentary select committee has released a draft bill that explicitly declares that software will no longer be patentable in New Zealand. FTA: Open source software champions have been influential in excluding software from the scope of patents in the new Patents Bill. Clause 15 of the draft Bill, as reported back from the Commerce Select Committee, lists a number of classes of invention which should not be patentable and includes the sub-clause oea computer program is not a patentable invention.

Comment Re:Same old (Score 1) 267

Microsoft do exactly the same. Microsoft's contract with Facebook allows them more access to info than Google's does, so they can flood your bing.com results with even more social crud than Google does at the moment. Both have similar or equivalent access to Twitter's stream. Both have similar access to LinkedIn. Google has slightly better access to MySpace than Microsoft, but no where near AOL in that regard.

But in the end, everyone is doing it. Bing, Google, AOL, Ask.com and anyone else that has products in the search result market. And to my knowledge, Google and Microsoft both allow you to disable live/social results in your search queries quite easily (and I'm guessing the others must also.)

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