Follow Slashdot stories on Twitter


Forgot your password?
DEAL: For $25 - Add A Second Phone Number To Your Smartphone for life! Use promo code SLASHDOT25. Also, Slashdot's Facebook page has a chat bot now. Message it for stories and more. Check out the new SourceForge HTML5 internet speed test! ×

Comment I actually submitted a proposal (Score 2) 281

Our submission is at:
I found that most suggestions fell into the following buckets

*Things the Govt can do*
- FTC needs to ensure caller ID cant be spoofed
- FBI needs to hunt down the racketeers and bust them
- FTC needs to mandate (likely by fiat) that the telephone companies make the robocallers pay the full cost for the call

*Things you can do*
- Use an audio capcha system
- Provide a system to black list known and irritating callers
- A few people discussed how Google voice might solve the problem.

I did not expect to see that many people going through the submission process which tells me that the pain point is real.
However, I think people are mostly converging on how they intend to block the calls and the winner will get decided on how good your execution measures up to every one else.
What FTC finally does implement based on the contest is another matter.

Comment Here is how we do it. (Score 1) 182

I work for a smallish team (~100) in a megacorp that ships a service that has a significant number of customers.

We have 2 major code branches - the developer branch and the production branch.
- The production branch sees management approved point fixes that get collected and rolled out every month after a huge number of tests (automated and manual).
- The developer branch gets continuous feature additions. We collect all features from the developer branch and move it to production once every 6 months.

The details below pertain to our developer branch:
Like a lot of other people have suggested, we have spent time on robust test automation. We split that up into a smallish set that runs before any code check in. All checked in code runs through a significant battery of tests nightly.
We fork the developer branch and deploy it on a self hosted environment every week.
After self hosting features for ~5.5 months, we initiate rolling out the new features to production - takes about a fortnight.

Hope that helps.

Comment Re:what does it do? manage updates? (Score 1) 54

With Windows Intune, you get the same list of updates as the Windows Software Update Service (WSUS), with the same level of control:

        * Windows Intune works over the cloud like Windows Update and Microsoft Update, but you don't need on-site infrastructure.
        * Updates are delivered directly to any of your managed PCs that have an Internet connection.

So to me the fact that there is no set up needed to manage the service (for multiple clients) is the USP.
For more details, please look at the

Comment Re:what does it do? manage updates? (Score 1) 54

Partners can manage Windows Intune for multiple customers from a central place (the central place being

In order to sell subscriptions to Windows Intune, you will need to first sign a Microsoft Online Services Partner Agreement (MOSPA).

Subscriptions to Windows Intune will be sold like other cloud services from Microsoft—through the Microsoft Online Services website at

For more details, please look at the

Comment Re:what does it do? manage updates? (Score 1) 54

Windows intune provides you with a simple web based console to do the following:
Manage updates: Centrally manage the deployment of the Microsoft® updates and service packs you choose to all your PCs from the Windows Intune console—freeing up your IT staff from routine management tasks.

Protect PCs from malware: Help safeguard your PCs from the latest threats with centralized protection that's built on the Microsoft Malware Protection Engine and uses the same trusted technologies as Microsoft Forefront® Endpoint Protection and Microsoft Security Essentials.

Proactively monitor PCs: Receive alerts on updates and threats so that you can proactively identify and resolve problems with your PCs— before they impact end users and your business.

Provide remote assistance: Help resolve PC issues, regardless of where you or your end users are located, with remote assistance.

Track hardware and software inventory: Track hardware and software assets used in your business to efficiently manage your assets, licenses, and compliance.

Set security policies: Centrally manage update, firewall, and malware protection settings across all of your PCs, even on remote machines outside the corporate network.

You may read more details here:
Full disclosure: I work on the team that built it.

Comment Re:In the End... (Score 2, Informative) 236

You can use any browser of your choice. I do.
I have never seen any employee use a Linux desktop. I can't imagine the pain you would have to go through to develop/debug windows stuff on a linux box.
I have seen people use their apple macbook-air to present things often enough though.
I have also seen the IT staff doing their best to help visitors to the campus with config issues even when they use linux.
I know several people who use windows ports of vim/emacs/cygwin etc in their primary desktops. Their code does make it to the public.
We are expected to dogfood our own applications. So yes, we do check out the latest browser, the latest builds of visual studio or what ever else we get asked to check.

Comment Re:I would hope not.. (Score 1) 402

We store customer specific data hence we are legally mandated to ensure that e.g. EU customers go to EU.
Every time a customer reports a problem, we need to look at web logs or SQL query results from a specific set of machines to help debug it.
The sheer number of data centers we are hosted in makes it impossible to keep them all in sync at any given time, hence its not always possible to debug based on results from the closest data center.

Comment I would hope not.. (Score 1) 402

I work with world class developers and an equally competent team of operations folks. The amount of disconnect between the 2 sets of folks is amazing. The developers black box stuff out of their consideration (e.g. setting up load balancers, with or with out affinity, not littering certificates all over the place, the amount of privileges a service needs etc.). The operations folks ignore other aspects (a cache that's hard to build could be lost after a process recycle, not version controlling their ad-hoc queries/sql jobs etc.)
Even if I take out considerations of giving developers access to customer sensitive data, the mere fact that most developers assume that a complete clean reinstall is as trivial as going back to a previous VM image (wrt time considerations) makes me pause and not provide them access. Add to the fact that developers talk in logical terms (regardless of scale) while operations talks in physical terms (actual machine names, drives etc.) and watching them communicate is like watching 2 blind men describe an elephant to you.
Our team makes it mandatory for developers to request for clean concise information from operations who procure it on their behalf. Yes it is slow, yes, it makes the developers having to batch their queries together but I can't imagine doing it any other way right now.

Comment Re:Maybe I'm missing something.. (Score 4, Interesting) 207

There is already a fork that is being worked upon by Monty (who was the founder of MySQL) I suspect the real contention is over the brand MySQL (which has significant mind-share) which was transferred to SUN and will now go to Oracle.
A lot of medium sized companies use MySQL today and have support contracts with who-so-ever owns the brand itself. They I guess are the ones who are worried - choosing another database is often not an option.

Comment Re:How much skill? (Score 1) 46

I actually am looking at the Apache2 code right now for some obscure reasons. I have 6 years of professional development experience (though very little of that in C).
What I saw was, it took me like 2 weeks of constant battling to make some sense of the code in any way. GDB, inserting random print statement statements, stace and ltrace helped. However what has come out as the most difficult road block for me is: Macros!
I don't get flustered by pointers too much, but Apache2 code uses some demonic macros, resulting in method invocations being redirected to differently named subroutines in other files.
That and the fact that any substantial project takes 10 minutes to recompile for every trivial thing I change are my real pain points.
Having said that, just because I can now read the code does not let me feel confident that I can contribute code to Apache2. That I think will take way more time!!!


Submission + - Jerry Yang becomes the new Yahoo CEO

indraneil writes: "Yahoo Inc. chairman Terry Semel stepped down as chief executive officer on Monday. This ends a year long rough patch as CEO, plagued by efforts of constant catching up with Google.
He had been the CEO for the last 6 years and will be replaced by co-founder Jerry Yang. Susan Decker has been named president.
He continues as a non executive chairman. Yahoo stocks picked up after the news was published.
NBC is covering this in greater detail."

Slashdot Top Deals

Time is an illusion perpetrated by the manufacturers of space.