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Submission + - How (and why) FreeDOS keeps DOS alive (

angry tapir writes: In August it will be 35 years since of the release of version 1.0 of MS-DOS (or PC DOS as it was known at the time). Despite MS-DOS being long dead, the FreeDOS community has kept DOS alive, with the open source project having been founded some 22 years ago. I caught up with the founder of the project about the plans for the next version of FreeDOS and what keeps the open source OS alive.

Comment Re:Agreed except power consumption (Score 1) 75

Well, I was clearly looking at it from my consumer end view.

For corporations this changes any way: 5 year old gear is amortized and should be replaced, just because the beancounters say so.

However, I doubt you can totally offset the energy savings by purchasing new gear. Assume 500$ for a new machine (Business machines? Hell, you won't get them that cheap, but I'll run with it). I don't know how much my i7 rates, but I know it comes with a 90W powersupply. As such we can assume it uses that as a maximum. Assume a new i5 laptop will use half of that: 45W. So, you save 45W, which means you save 45*24*365 Wh = 394.2kWh over year. Let's assume you live in New York, which means you pay 18.1 cents per kWh (okay, values are from late 2011), which means you pay about 71$ less per year by the replacement. Assuming the 500$ investment, you need 7 years to break even. This is true regardless of scale (1 computer or 10000 computers)

So, yes, energy is a factor, but if it were the only factor, it wouldn't be cost effective. Do, also note that in every assumption I was very very friendly with the "replace" argument: cheap replacement cost, expensive electricity....

Of course, I might have miscalculated and you're right... who knows....

Comment Re:Slow growth? (Score 1) 75

He refers to a certain period of manufacturing where lower quality capacitors were used, which resulted in failing computers within 3 to 5 years. If I remember correctly, that was around the P-IV / Athlon days. So, if manufacturers start using worse caps, the computers will die quicker and as such people will be forced to buy replacement machines earlier.

See also: planned obsolescence.

Comment Computing plateau (Score 2) 75

Really, it's just that: we're at a computing plateau. At least for most users. Twenty years ago, if you held onto your machine for 5 years, the machine was usually unusable with up to date software. These days? 5 years? No problem. I'm still using a i7-2630QM, which was introduced in 01/2011. There is absolutely nothing wrong with it and does anything I ask of it.

Same for my desktop, an AMD A8-3860, which was introduced in 07/2011. Does what I need, quickly enough.

Are these machines high end machines now? Absolutely not... However, the time of buying new toys just to have new toys, is over for me. Works for me, means: no reason to upgrade. Many people who are not into tech think that way. A few years ago, I helped a non-tech with her old desktop. It had died: caps gone up in smoke. I said: hey, it's about 5 years old, it had a good run. She: *only* five years? Non-tech people think differently (Ha!) These days I'd be pissed too if my machine died after 5 years of use.

Submission + - Throwing our IoT investment in the trash thanks to NetGear (

Miche67 writes: Alan Zeichik tells a cautionary tale about what happens when Internet of Things device makers stop supporting devices and the cloud services that go with them. For him, it's NetGear's termination of its services for VueZone wireless video cameras that's led him to throw those devices in the trash.

His three-year investment into two VueZone camera systems and their services is lost.

All that VueZone equipment is headed for the dustbin of IoT history. There is nothing wrong with the access points or cameras. There is nothing wrong with the cloud-based service VueZone relies upon—except that it is no longer cost-effective for NetGear to offer the service.

Comment Re:Most Clients Get Infected Looking For Free Movi (Score 2) 212

I would say it is about 50/50 with porn and regular movies.

Which I don't understand. You can get porn risk free pretty much on all big platforms. Free porn is a solved problem. No need to go to shady websites.

Hell, it's in the interest of most porn providers to avoid infecting you because, they'd rather have you as a paying customer. Go to the big streaming porn websites, invariably there are payvideo on demand, webcam sites and dating sites behind them. They want you to pay for that. They don't want your credit card number to be lifted by some malware writing shady criminals...

Comment Re: Generators (Score 2) 637

Ah, ok... I see... "brute force typical 8 char password", is what you mean. Sorry for the lapsus in my understanding because "brute force" does have a special kind of meaning to me, so I focussed on the combinatorics and assumed a random password. You mean, employ statistical analysis on typical non-random 8 char passwords. Yes, definitely, that will work.

Comment Re: Generators (Score 1) 637

Which search space? The 64^8 "random passwords" search space?

My point was that the search space of word-based variations is already significantly smaller than those of 64^8 "random passwords". Reducing the "dictionary-word-based" search space even further using other tools would make it even smaller and thus easier.

Or am I misunderstanding your comment?

There is no such thing as a typical "random 8 char password", or is there?

Now, of course, correct-horse-staple-battery style passwords, would theoretically be something like 4^1000000 (four words, 1M words to chose from), which is an insane search space. Even assuming the 100 most common words, still is a humongous search space. Perhaps statistical analysis would work on that.

Comment Re: Generators (Score 2) 637

Have you got any maths to back that up? Assume 64 valid chars ([a-zA-z0-9_-] over 8 positions, that means 64^8 combinations, which is about 2.8*10^14 combinations 280 trillion combinations.

According to WolframAlpha, there are about 1 million words in the English language. So, each word in the English language should generate 280 million new combinations based upon the patterns we tend to use. Colour me highly sceptical about that. I might be wrong, my maths are a bit rusty and I'm not all that much into password cracking. So, I am open to arguments showing that my thinking is flawed.

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