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Comment We don't need... (Score 1) 300 steenking UPS!

I used to work as network admin for a small web-hosting company. The guy who owned that company also owned a cybercafe and I was expected to deal with all the problems there too. Anyway, I go in one morning and he proudly shows me this light-up sign that looks like he's found it in a skip. We had no UPS on the web servers, despite me repeatedly asking him to buy one, so I ask him not to plug this thing in until he's at least tested it with a multimeter; he knows how to do this, so I think it'll be safe to leave him in the building on his own when I left work later that day.

I go in the next morning and he's flapping around the place like a chicken with its head cut off because all the power is out. It transpires he'd plugged the damn thing in and turned it on just before I'd arrived, flipping the breaker and after I'd corrected that, the Sun box subsequently shit itself on reboot. A Red Hat box slowly went through its recovery boot while I babysat that other PoS; this was a long time pre-ZFS so it required some careful prodding to get it working again. I eventually get it all up and running after several hours, then made him promise not to plug it in again and to *buy a UPS* so *when* the power failed, I wouldn't have to do this again.

You can guess what happened the following morning: the blithering idiot had done it again, allegedly after "testing and repairing" it. We were a couple of floors up so I suggested he take a walk while I repaired it in case I kicked him through the window. I'm not a big bloke and seldom believe violence is the answer to any problem, so he goes for a walk in full knowledge that I am very angry indeed at having this entirely preventable problem occur twice in the space of two days.

A couple of days later I sign for delivery of two shiny new UPSs.

Then there was the time I was accused of stealing from a safe I'd refused to accept the code for. I walked out not long after that, unsurprisingly.

Comment Re:Dear SJW morons (Score 1) 781

I admit to the same reaction. If one of these muppets pops up and starts squawking then I just close the page down and forget about it. Anyone who runs a message board and sees this kind of idiot start posting, please delete the entire thread, delete the account of the professionally offended and IP ban them. The only way to win is not to play. Close the windows, bolt the doors, and for the sake of your sanity do not engage with them.

My partner commented on the story to me earlier. Her question? "Do none of these people have jobs?"

Jesus Christ, Emmeline Pankhurst would have punched him in the mouth for even implying that this was an issue!

Comment Re:Your laws ignore my rights (Score 1) 399

Another thank you for that link. I live in the UK but we have our own version of this bollocks hanging over our heads. For the record, I don't think Corbyn (leader of Labour, the other party of our own two-party "democracy") has much of a clue, though hiring a pretty decent team of economists helps, but Cameron, Osborne and company will pay a few cheap bribes to their loyal voters (OAPs, mainly. They also make noises about immigration to deter people from voting UKIP (aka The Pull-up-the-drawbridge Party)) to keep themselves in power and able to enact bigger bribes for their corporate mates (see Rupert Murdoch, aka Mr Fox News; he also owns a large chunk of the UK print and TV press and uses that to influence voters to vote Conservative, thereby completing the circle). I also work for the NHS, so I'm doubly screwed.

Comment Re:This matches how people function (Score 1) 148

Another agreement here.

I work in the NHS and we have to change passwords on OS login and most applications every 28 days (passwords must be 8+ characters (IIRC), must contain at least one number amongst those and must also contain at least one upper case letter). This results in either a) people writing their passwords down and keeping them handy or b) using the same password every month and changing two digits to account for the month (I use option B as it should be marginally more secure, assuming our IT staff have a clue (they don't, for the most part; most of those IT staff are either relatives of someone else who works there and couldn't get a job elsewhere but can program a PVR (rank and file staff) or are ex-nurses who couldn't manage the hand-washing instructions (managers, and I *know* you'll think I'm joking here. I assure you that I am not))).

I've suggested quite a few times that being too secure is actually being less secure, namely that because if it's too complex to have an allowed password then people will just circumvent/trivialise it, but as I'm not working in IT these days (long story, and despite attempts by former colleagues to convince me to go back, it is not happening) then I'm just ignored. The entire hospital trust is rapidly circling the pan anyway, so I'm just doomg what I'm paid to do until it goes under and the rest can go to hell. Whether we get all our patient records cloned and sold in the meantime is no longer my concern; I've done my bit and no-one cares.

Comment Re:Metabolic rate doesn't vary that much (Score 1) 381

Auto-immune/genetic disorder? There are several which could cause this, e.g. Ehlers-Danlos, Marfan syndrome, etc. They can be of varying degrees of severity so if he does have one of them, he may be at the "lucky" end of the scale (skinny, can't really gain much weight, hypermobile joints).

Just an additional possibility.

Comment Re:Just try it (Score 1) 381

What was that joke about porn on the internet? Something like: If you got rid of all the porn on the internet, there'd be a single page left reading "Bring back the porn" ? The other concern is that ATM, we have a committee of arseholes (Jack Straw is amongst them, need I say more?) examining the Freedom of Information Act to see how best to gut it, so we won't be able to check what non-work network requests are going out from parliament (given the current stories about a very high-level paedophile group in parliament, some of that shit could be very dodgy indeed). Cameron (and another Tory genius, Theresa May) also think they can ban encryption without banning encryption. No, I don't know either, but look on the bright side: aliens may invade and take them all away somewhere for questioning. That scenario is more likely than a sensible, humane, well-researched and fully-costed proposal coming from this group of utter numpties.

Comment Re:You just described SoylentNews. (Score 1) 552

Really? Can't say as I've had the same experience. The site is pretty small compared to slashdot. Are you thinking of pipedot? (disclaimer: I haven't looked at pipedot in a good few months and have no idea how things are there ATM; they may be awesome, they may not. Check that out too!) Anyway, feel free to test the waters at If your personal experience is that it's as bad as this AC suggest, just delete your account and don't go there again. Simple.

Submission + - Sourceforge staff takes over a user's account and wraps their software installer ( 11

An anonymous reader writes: Sourceforge staff took over the account of the GIMP-for-Windows maintainer claiming it was abandoned and used this opportunity to wrap the installer in crapware. Quoting Ars:

SourceForge, the code repository site owned by Slashdot Media, has apparently seized control of the account hosting GIMP for Windows on the service, according to e-mails and discussions amongst members of the GIMP community—locking out GIMP's lead Windows developer. And now anyone downloading the Windows version of the open source image editing tool from SourceForge gets the software wrapped in an installer replete with advertisements.

Comment Re:Datacaps? (Score 1) 132

But that would hurt their scandalous profit margin! ADSL is, as you know, mostly BT and resold by others. Some ISPs have their own equipment in the local exchanges (LLU), while others have their own cable network (Virgin Media, TAFKA NTL). I don't *think* anyone is running new cable ATM and BT are plodding along at their usual pace. The real problem is that the ASA has allowed all this "up to x speed" bollocks to continue, thereby allowing all UK ISPs to vastly oversubscribe their capacity. Virgin Media seem to be randomly re-purposing broadband capacity for their bloody cable TV, crippling the broadband speeds in the process. I'd go the BT Infinity route but need to do a little research first into how much the local Infinity capacity is used; if it's utterly thrashed, there's no point changing to something equally as unstable.

Comment Re:Simple solution.... (Score 2) 228

Yeah, refusal to disclose passwords is covered under the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (or it was when I was in college, at least); I suspect *that* law will be tweaked (i.e. to cover the same imprisonment terms as the original offence for which you are being investigated, so for murder that might well mean life for not disclosing your password) but there needs to be a *very* tight scope placed on that (i.e. if the police are searching for terrorist propaganda and find a small amount of cannabis at your house, the drug would be confiscated and destroyed but no police/judicial action taken as a result beyond the confiscation (not that I care what people do to themselves if they are consenting adults)). Will that kind of thing happen? Of course not. Laws are (effectively) created by the tabloid press and the various muppets on Mumsnet et al, so we'll get monosyllabic drivel with enough loopholes to drive a fleet of buses through. I'd love to vote these people out but a) I keep voting and all I get as a result is different idiots wearing different coloured ties, and b) you can't vote for the Daily Heil or Mumsnet to keep quiet for a week and just let us get on with our lives.

Comment Simple solution.... (Score 5, Insightful) 228

...get a search warrant. Or, to be a bit more accurate: stop whining about how difficult your job is now and just do what you should have been doing all along. If you are having trouble identifying "persons of interest", that is not my problem. If encryption is too hard for you to break covertly, that is not my problem. If you can't do your job without every single person holding the door open for you to have a look around inside, that is not my problem. See a theme here, Hannigan? You are paid a handsome salary to detect nefarious arseholes who would do damage to the UK and its interests; perhaps you should earn that salary instead of moaning about the IT industry making the life of your staff difficult. If a dragnet is the answer, you are asking the wrong questions.

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PL/I -- "the fatal disease" -- belongs more to the problem set than to the solution set. -- Edsger W. Dijkstra, SIGPLAN Notices, Volume 17, Number 5