4th > February > 2003 Archive

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The rise of the $99 ‘consumer’ Linux distribution

$99, give or take $20, seems to be the new price point for full-featured, consumer-level Linux distributions. This is a great deal for non-technical users, since most of the new-wave consumer Linux products give users a much prettier and easier experience than traditional, all-GPL distributions tailored for a geeky user base. Whether or not the current explosion of Linux use by ordinary people is "good" is still open to question, but I suspect the answer depends more on who is doing the answering than any other factor.

AMD ships Athlon MP 2600+

AMD today introduced the Athlon MP 2600+, available "immediately through 49 system builders worldwide. The list price is $273 in those OEM quantities of a thousand.
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Why US gov reps mugged pro open source declaration

In the middle of last month a US delegation to an international conference clearly signalled US policy as regards open source by de-fanging a pro open source declaration. The conference, the Asian regional meeting of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) had been poised to "support" open source software in a closing declaration, but the US government delegation dug its heels in and had it watered down to "encourage."

HP subs server memory gig to Solectron

HP is consolidating its branded server memory modules budget into the open arms of Solectron.
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Lawyers enter fray in spam blacklisting dispute

Island Networks, the Channel Islands domain manager, is threatening anti-spam blacklisting service Spews.org with legal action following the blacklisting of its IP address.

Sun plots critical path to post-SMP future

Systems companies such as Sun Microsystems could do worse than draw on Buckminster Fuller for inspiration for their future. At an analyst briefing in Menlo Park last week, Greg Papadopoulos said that Sun's challenge was navigating a "post-SMP" era of computing, which is a bold statement from a company that mushroomed in size on its ability to do big SMP systems convincingly.
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PC support staff most in demand

PC Support staff are the most sought-after IT workers in the UK, according to a survey by recruitment outfit Elan.
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Cyberterror! Project Gutenberg URL swiped for Saddam

A small hijacking will likely gladden the hearts of would-be cyberwarriors in the Pentagon. This morning, for reasons that are not entirely obvious, projectgutenberg.org seems to be pointing to the front page of the web site of the Mission of Iraq to the United Nations. Skulduggery by the Iraqi secret services, or fiendish cyberterrorists?
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MS says how it will ship Sun Java for XP, Longhorn

Microsoft has explained how it proposes to distribute Sun's Java, should it lose its current appeal against a District Court order instructing it to do so. The company also yesterday was granted a stay of that order, pending the appeal, so it all remains up in the air. But still, we now have The Beast's script for how its own VM will pass away, and how Sun's JRE will replace it, should the worst come to the worst.
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mm02 has good Q

mm02, the UK's smallest mobile network operator, had a good Q3 on the subscriber front, gaining 791,000 customers in the three months to December 31, 2002.

Symmetrix is back on top

EMC has vaulted past rivals IBM and HDS to regain its crown as storage's King of Big-Iron. Its sixth generation Symmetrix DMX incorporates a new non-blocking direct matrix architecture, with up to 128 point-to-point connections between cache memory and the front-end and back-end controllers.
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Blue Coat clamps down on rogue IM use

Security outfit Blue Coat Systems yesterday announced technology designed to guard against the misuse of AOL, MSN and Yahoo! IM applications on corporate networks.
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Dell Axims come to Europe

Dell today started selling the Axim PDA, its first own-brand handheld, in Europe. The Axim X5 comes in two flavours, costing £229 and £169 EX-VAT, respectively, and five languages: English, French, German, Italian and Spanish.
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Xbox losses double

The true cost of Microsoft's determined assault on the console market is becoming apparent, with new figures filed by the company with the Securities and Exchange Commission in the USA revealing that in the three months leading up to the end of December, it lost $348 million on its Xbox division, on revenues of $1.28 billion.
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Geoworks flees UK

Geoworks, the moribund wireless software designer, is ceasing operations in the UK with immediate effect.
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MPs barred from reading their own emails

There's crass and there's unbelievable stupidity, a category into which tumbles the person who installed a new email filtering package at the House of Commons.
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Korean Net users blame MS for Slammer carnage

Korean Net users are threatening Microsoft with legal action over the damage inflicted on the country's broadband infrastructure by the Slammer worm.
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Reg readers are generous PC-donating bunch

ComputerAid International wants to say a big thank-you to Register Readers, for their generosity in last year's PC donation campaign.
server room

BT smarts at £1.35m compensation payout

BT has reacted angrily to reports that its £150m contract to bring e-government services to Edinburgh is "close to collapse".
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Phantom of the Opera

Opera is racing to fix five vulnerabilities, three of which are said to be serious, involving the latest version of its popular Web browsing software.
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BBC sends Archers fans computer virus

Only a couple of weeks after its networks became infected with the ExploreZip virus, the BBC has managed to mail a copy of the Sobig worm to fans of the long-running Radio 4 show, The Archers.
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Be wary of cut-price telcos, warns research

Punters are being warned to do their research before signing up to telcos that claim to offer cheaper phone calls.