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Comment easy (Score 3, Interesting) 393

Back in the days of XP SP1 I bought a laptop. It wanted to install a "security update" right away, but I put it off. wanting to get comfortable with my new computer and my new operating system first. I also used a live Linux CD on the computer a lot.And if you recall, these were the days that Microsoft was particularly vocal about their hatred for Linux. After about a month I finally told Windows that it could install the "Security Update". I didn't notice any obvious change in Windows, but I did see one big change with my laptop, it could no longer connect to the Internet when I ran my live CD!

I checked everything. The CD was still the same and still had the proper CRC checksum. I made another CD anyway but, as expected, the results were the same. After a lot of work I finally tracked down the problem. The laptop NIC, like all modern NICs, had a small eeprom on it that stored the MAC address (that's how they can mass produce NICs that all have unique MAC addresses). And it turns out that there is plenty of extra space in the eeprom not needed for the MAC address, and the NIC used that space to store start up configuration settings, and mine were now set to values that made no sense and kept the NIC from working properly. Interestingly, XP ignored how the NIC was configured and reconfigured it as it wanted so that the device would work. But Linux, which worked fine on the computer for a month, didn't suspect that anything was wrong and tried to use my hardware as it was configured.

Once I understood this I was able to run :Linux again. It was a pain, I had to manually issue some commands every time I booted the CD, but I was able to work around the problem. Eventually Linux code was changed to not trust configuration settings and configure the NIC in the same way that Windows did and I no longer had to manually reconfigure the NIC on every boot.

I'm a cautious computer user. I have a decent hardware firewall and I also use a good software firewall (not one from Microsoft). So now I was in a position where the only malware that had ever done me harm was a Microsoft Windows Update. It wasn't too hard to figure out how to not experience another problem like this one. I've never accepted a software update from the malware provider who screwed me since then. I never will. I have had no malware experiences since then. So how I'll deal with the new update policy is to leave my Windows settings just as they are and not let Microsoft break anything else.

Comment BullShit (Score 4, Insightful) 132

They have suspended conservative posters simply because of posts of those people's followers, but they let ISIS supporters like Anjem Choudary continue to post.

And while they might pretend to take some actions against terrorism. they seem to be doing nothing to silence posts promoting tourism.

Comment for clean air clean up insurance law (Score 1) 990

I have a gasoline car. Sure, 90% of what I do could be done with an electric can. But I still need a gas car. An no, if you think I'm going to go out and rent a car when I do need a gasoline car then you're full of it. I'm not going to own a gasoline and an electric car for one simple reason, the insurance industry is running a huge scam in getting the state legislatures to force us to have liability insurance on each vehicle we own even if we can't be driving them all at once.

If you have a teenage driver in the family or you ever have an accident or know anyone who has, you know the insurance is really on the driver and not on the car. And the driver can only drive one car at a time. The only reason we pretend the insurance is on the car and not the driver is to make more profits for insurance companies. Otherwise we should not require liability insurance on more vehicles in a household than there are licensed drivers in the household.

So if you want clean air and reduced global warming, then get the damn laws cleaned up to not give the insurance companies a windfall when a person owns two cars, or a household owns more cars than they have drivers. Until then people like me who need the ability to fill up on the road when on a trip beyond the range of our toy electric car, will need gasoline cars. As expensive as it would be to own a second electric car, it would be more expensive to take the double hit on liability insurance (I have a good driving record and no points against me and I already pay more for insurance each year than I do for gas). There is no way that I or others like me are going to spring for an electric second car and then enrich the insurance companies further than we already do.

Comment Re:Disagree != Troll, unless you're Twitter. (Score 1) 637

Bullshit. The two terms mean exactly the same thing on Slashdot. That's obvious from the many times I've posted a political statement to see it marked up many as insightful, and then seen it marked down as Troll or Flame bait. These terms obviously mean that I didn't like what you said but I can't make an eloquent argument against it and would rather just see that you get less attention by modding you down.

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