Simon Sharwood

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LaCie to shutter Wuala cloud storage service, data deleted Nov 15

External disk and small NAS vendor LaCie will close its Wuala cloud storage service. Wuala launched in 2008 under the auspices of a company called Caleido that in 2009 merged with LaCie. In the years since, LaCie has included wuala's software with many of its products to smooth the path from its devices to the cloud. That …
Simon Sharwood, 18 Aug 2015
Firefox experimental private browsing mode

Mozilla testing very private browsing mode

The Mozilla Foundation has outlined plans for enhanced private browsing in its Firefox browser. The outfit thinks that “when you open a Private Browsing window in Firefox you’re sending a signal that you want more control over your privacy than current private browsing experiences actually provide.” How much more privacy? …
Simon Sharwood, 18 Aug 2015
Donald Trump

Donald Trump dumps on Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg

US presidential candidate Donald Trump has called for major reforms to the United States' skilled labour and set himself up in opposition to Mark Zuckerberg. Trump singled out Zuckerberg with the release of his immigration reform policy that, among other things, details a plan to build a wall between the United States and …
Simon Sharwood, 18 Aug 2015
ESXi Embedded Host Client

VMware flings out preview of new web management interface

VMware admins are generally pretty happy with their lot, although the dire web interface for vSphere 5.x got plenty of backs up. Virtzilla therefore gave vSphere 6.0 a shiny new web interface, but did so by relying on the NPAPI browser plugin format that's about to go to the big Trash folder in the sky thanks to Chrome deciding …
Simon Sharwood, 18 Aug 2015
Android 6 Marshmallow Logo

'Marshmallow' picked as moniker for Android 6.0

Alphabet's search, ads, cloud and mobile business Google has revealed that the next version of its Android mobile operating system will be called “Marshmallow”. Google gives each version of Android the name of a sweet and also advances each new Android by one letter of the alphabet. Hence Android's current version is Lolliop, …
Simon Sharwood, 18 Aug 2015

Windows 10 keeps Microsoft's odd desktop-as-a-service rules

Microsoft won't change its licensing options to permit services providers to offer Windows 10 desktops-as-a-service (DaaS) on shared infrastructure. Redmond's rules divide the DaaS word into two categories. In the first, a service provider runs “dedicated” infrastructure that delivers DaaS for only one client customer and is …
Simon Sharwood, 18 Aug 2015

Jimbo 'Wikipedia' Wales leads Lawrence Lessig's presidential push

Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales has signed up as committee chair for tech lawyer Larry Lessig's tilt at the US presidency. “When you light up the Internet, anything is possible,” Wales says in the canned statement announcing his new gig. Lessig's admitted his attempt to win the presidency is futile, but hopes his candidacy …
Simon Sharwood, 17 Aug 2015

Oracle to certify its database v.12c for Windows 10

Oracle's decided it will support Windows 10. For its databases. Big Red's popped out a ”Statement of Direction” (PDF) in which it says it “plans to certify Oracle Database 12c (12.1.0.2) on Windows 10 by October 2015”. The 32-bit Oracle Database client will get the nod on the 32-bit and 64-bit versions of Windows 10. The 64- …
Simon Sharwood, 17 Aug 2015
Eugene Kaspersky in Sydney

Kaspersky: Freemasons coded fake malware in the Bermuda Triangle

Eugene Kaspersky has taken to his blog to make another stinging rebuttal of a Reuters report that alleged the company that bears his name deliberately sabotaged rival antivirus packages. “The Reuters story is based on information provided by anonymous former KL employees. And the accusations are complete nonsense, pure and …
Simon Sharwood, 17 Aug 2015
Windows 10

Microsoft replaces Windows 10 patch update, isn't saying why

Windows 10 is keeping its new owners busy, as Microsoft has released the second “cumulative update” for the operating system in three days. The update dated August 11th was billed as a “security update for Windows 10” and promised “improvements to improve the functionality of Windows 10” plus resolution for half a dozen bugs …
Simon Sharwood, 17 Aug 2015
United nations flag by https://www.flickr.com/photos/sanjit/ cc 2.0 attribution https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Chinese, Russian, tech giants join global open source efforts

Notable tech companies from China and Russia are taking strides into the heart of the global technology community. Aliyun, the cloud computing offshoot of Business-to-business tat bazaar Alibaba, has become an Advisory Board member of the Xen Project, maker of the popular (if frequently-perforated) open source Xen hypervisor …
Simon Sharwood, 17 Aug 2015
This way to linux by https://www.flickr.com/photos/pfh/ cc 2.0 attribution https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Linux 4.2 release 'possible' for next week, if Linus feels good

The world may be on the threshold of another Linux Kernel release. Or it might not. Whether or not Linux 4.2 emerges next week depends on how Linus Torvalds feels next Sunday. On Sunday evening, US time, the Linux Lord gave release candidate 7 the thumbs' up and let it be known he'd quite like it to be the last such release …
Simon Sharwood, 17 Aug 2015
yellow measuring tape - black writing

Windows 10 growth flattens out to 30 per cent per week

Windows 10's growth has slowed, according to StatCounter Global Stats. Last week, StatCounter opined that Windows 10 had captured 3.55 per cent of the global market for desktop operating systems. This week the firm's revised that number to 3.78 per cent for the week to August 9th and says that for the following week Windows …
Simon Sharwood, 17 Aug 2015
Tianjin crater

China shutters 50 websites for spreading explosion 'rumours'

China's Cyberspace Administration has taken down 50 web sites for reporting “rumours” on the Tianjin explosions. State organ Xinhua now reports that 112 people are confirmed dead, with another 95 missing, after last week's explosions in a dangerous good warehouse. Chinese media that have reported different versions of events …
Simon Sharwood, 16 Aug 2015
arsenal_b_dortmund_champions_league_648

Boss hands dunce's cap to chap who turned off disk monitor

On-Call If it's Sunday, it must be time for On-Call, our regular look at the messes Reg readers are asked to clean up at night, on weekends or at other times when they should by rights be enjoying themselves. This week, reader Oliver recalls the time when he worked among “a small but happy team of engineers” at “an IT support company …
Simon Sharwood, 16 Aug 2015
Vulture South's Saturday ride

DIGITAL DOPING might make you a Tour de Virtual cycling champion

A few weeks ago, Huawei asked if I'd like to take its new P8 flagship smartmobe for a spin. Which is why I found myself with two Android smartphones in my pocket just before I hopped on my bicycle to ride home from work. Before I braved the traffic, I wondered if different phones running the same cycle-tracking app might …
Simon Sharwood, 15 Aug 2015

Google's Euro-cloud in lengthy disk degradation drama

Users of Google Compute Engine's Persistent Disks in the europe-west1-b region have endured an anxious few hours, as the service has experienced a lengthy brown-out. Persistent Disks are data stores that exist independently of virtual machines and retain data whatever the state of the VM. One can store data in a Persistent …
Simon Sharwood, 14 Aug 2015

China laments 'wild guesses and malicious slurs' on state hacking

Chinese president Xi Jinping visits the USA in September, a visit expected to be afforded all the pomp and ceremony of a top-level bilateral leader's meeting. Other diplomatic protocols are meanwhile being observed, including sniping through the media. In China's case, that means state-owned Xinhua, which quoted Chinese …
Simon Sharwood, 14 Aug 2015

175 MILLION websites still powered by Windows Server 2003

Windows Server 2003 support ended a month ago today, but there are still 175 million websites on the public internet – about one in five – that are powered by the operating system. Plenty of the machines also run Microsoft Internet Information Services 6.0, a version of Redmond's web server that has primitive security compared …
Simon Sharwood, 14 Aug 2015
Sony Vaio Duo 11

Sony PC owners to get Windows 10 upgrade as early Christmas present

Sony has let owners of its Vaio computers know they're free to upgrade to Windows 10. In October or November. Sony walked away from the PC market in February 2014. Investment company Japan Industrial Partners snapped up the Vaio business and brand and has since brought new products to market. Sony retains responsibilities for …
Simon Sharwood, 14 Aug 2015

Australian court slaps down Hollywood's speculative invoices

The legal brawl between the owners of film Dallas Buyers Club (DBC) and Australian internet service provider iiNet has dealt a blow to Big Content's speculative invoicing practices by requiring a bond to be paid before the film's owners can contact suspected pirates. DBC's owners initiated legal action back in February, when …
Simon Sharwood, 14 Aug 2015
Samsung's Galaxy S6 Edge+ and GalaxyNote 5

Samsung phablet phrenzy brings mobile payments into the age of WIRELESS TAPE

Samsung has revealed that Samsung Pay will debut in Korea on August 20, reach the USA on on September 28 and eventually appear in the U.K., Spain and China, as well. The new scheme will not, however, rely on newfangled near-field comms (NFC). Instead it will use both NFC and Magnetic Secure Transmission (MST), a technology …
Simon Sharwood, 14 Aug 2015
2x2 Rubik's cube

Gartner square-slicers name Cisco and Nutanix integrated boxen bosses

Gartner this week popped out its new Magic Quadrant for Integrated Systems and the news is good for Nutanix, Cisco and HP. Gartner's square-slicers now consider three classes of integrated rigs, namely: Integrated stack system (ISS) — Server, storage and network hardware integrated with application software to provide …
Simon Sharwood, 13 Aug 2015

Aussies turn to comic cat videos for comfort

Internet cat videos really are conquering the world, or at the very least have started doing so in Australia, a nation now stripped of all sporting prowess, where the UK's Channel 5 production Cats Make You Laugh Out Loud has topped the nation's free-to-air TV ratings. First screened in the UK in January 2015, the show is …
Simon Sharwood, 13 Aug 2015
Dudley Do-Right Royal Canadian Mounted Police

Police use RIFLE AND TASER to relieve man of iPhone case

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) has armed itself with rifles and tasers to confront a man who appeared to have a handgun in his belt. According to The Globe and Mail, the “gun” was actually an iPhone case, probably of the sort US authorities have warned against using on the ground that they're stupid and dangerous. …
Simon Sharwood, 13 Aug 2015
Twitter for Mac New

Twitter EMBIGGENS users' inboxes to THOUSANDS of CHARACTERS

Twitter has lifted one of its basic rules: the 140-character limit on messages sent with the service. The financially-flustered micro-blogging platform today announced that the 140-character ceiling has been removed for direct messages, the peer-to-peer missives members can send each other without the rest of the world being …
Simon Sharwood, 13 Aug 2015
Turnbull's twitter feed by https://www.flickr.com/photos/paullyoung/  https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Australia's marriage equality vote should take place online

Australia's government has all-but-decided the nation should go to a plebiscite to decide whether local marriage laws should be altered to permit same-sex marriage. That vote should take place online. For those who oppose the plebiscite, or alterations to the Marriage Act, an online vote could be palatable as be cheaper and …
Simon Sharwood, 12 Aug 2015
Parallels access 3

Wrist-top virtualisation comes to Apple Watch

Parallels has issued version 3.0 of its Access app, software that lets you access PCs or Macs from Android or iOS devices. Why do we care about a junior remote access player making an update? Because this time around there's also a companion app for Apple Watch that Parallels delivers the ability to connect to remote computers …
Simon Sharwood, 12 Aug 2015
management cloud2

vCenter gains power to manage multiple clouds

Server virtualization management tool maker HotLink has enhanced the cloudy capabilities of VMware's vCenter by giving it the power to manage multiple public clouds. The company's new Cloud Management Express imbues vCenter with the power to manage VMs in Microsoft Azure, vCloud Air, OpenStack and Amazon EC2, and also to …
Simon Sharwood, 12 Aug 2015

Russia threatens to block Reddit over dopey posts

Russia's telecommunications regulator, Roskomnadzor has taken to social media to ask Reddit to stop offering advice on how to grow drugs. The agency has posted to social network vk.com, Russia's second-most-popular site according to Alexa, to post news that it has received a request from Russia's Federal Drug Control Service ( …
Simon Sharwood, 12 Aug 2015
Citrix Receiver in Microsoft Edge

Citrix warns that Windows 10's Edge browser borks Receiver

“When you point your finger cos your plan fell through”, sang rock dinosaurs Dire Straits in their 1980 tune Solid Rock, “you got three more fingers pointing back at you.” Perhaps folks down Citrix way are listening to that tune today after posting a piece about how Edge, Microsoft's new browser, makes it hard to run its …
Simon Sharwood, 11 Aug 2015
Indian mobile use

Indian carriers forced to send TXT for every 10 megabyte download

India has decided its mobile carriers must inform subscribers every time they download ten megabytes of data. New rules (PDF) posted last week also contain a new provision that will force carriers to switch off mobile data access on receipt of a single text message. Not all of India's mobile carriers have a national footprint …
Simon Sharwood, 11 Aug 2015
Netflix

Telstra's Netflix downloads get EVEN SLOWER

Netflix has released its new monthly rankings of Australian internet service providers' (ISPs) download speeds for video streamed from its servers and has found that Telstra is the worst-performing of the six it samples. Telstra is Australia's dominant carrier and promotes its networks as the nation's finest, but it also owns …
Simon Sharwood, 10 Aug 2015
Spartan satellite launcher

Queensland boffins ponder Scramjet satellite launch plan

The University of Queensland has launched a new plan to use scramjets as satellite launch vehicles. Scramjets – aka supersonic combusting ramjets – require air to pass through an engine at supersonic speeds. Fuel is added to that supersonic air, then ignited, with the result being a supersonic plume of hot gas capable of …
Simon Sharwood, 10 Aug 2015
yahoo revived billboard

Yahoo! parties! like! it's! 1999! with! retro! billboard! revival!

If at first you don't succeed, fail, fail, again Perenially-in-crisis web portal Yahoo! has decided to revive a tactic from its glory days in an attempt to create new glory days. The company has decided to “reclaim” what it's calling “the iconic billboard along San Francisco’s stretch of Interstate 80” that it hired in the …
Simon Sharwood, 10 Aug 2015
india

Foxconn to build 1,500-acre, US$5billion complex in India

Foxconn and the Indian state of Maharashtra have announced a relationship that will see the contract manufacturing company spend up to US$5 billion on a colossal manufacturing complex. In a deal announced on Saturday by Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis and Foxconn (known as Hon Hai in its Taiwan home ) founder and …
Simon Sharwood, 10 Aug 2015
Maurice Moss IT crowd

Job ad warns of boss who 'will incite anger and frustration'

Hey, software developers: been out of work for a while? We may have found a gig for you with Melbourne, Australia, IT recruitment outfit Milestone Technology as a front end web developer. To score the gig you'll need to know HTML 5, CSS 3, responsive web design, Javascript plus “Adobe photoshop and absolutely no illustrator …
Simon Sharwood, 10 Aug 2015
Astronauts on the International Space Station are ready to sample their harvest of a crop of "Outredgeous" red romaine lettuce from the Veggie plant growth system that tests hardware for growing vegetables and other plants in space. Credit: NASA

First SPACE SALAD on Monday's menu for ISS astronauts

Fresh food grown in space will, for the first time, be consumed by astronauts aboard the International Space Station (ISS). NASA has announced the meal will take place on Monday, when red romaine lettuce grown aboard the ISS will be added to the menu. The lettuce was produced under Operation Veggie, an effort that's seen a …
Simon Sharwood, 10 Aug 2015
Miss Piggy sings opera

Opera Software asks fat lady to stay shtum for a bit, but keep humming

Opera Software, maker of the Opera browser, has “has initiated a process to evaluate and consider strategic alternatives for the Company”. Opera's browser is very well-regarded, but last week the company announced preliminary second quarter will be at the lower end of forecasts and also reduced its future revenue forecasts. …
Simon Sharwood, 10 Aug 2015
Interactive Office - And pigs might fly... by https://www.flickr.com/photos/oddsock/ CC 2.0 attribution https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/ small crop at top of image

Windows 10 climbs to 3.55 per cent market share, Win 8.1 dips

Windows 10 looks to be doing alright, according to measurements taken by StatCounter. We usually consider desktop OS market share data from StatCounter and Netmarketshare in the first week of each month, but the former analyst also offers weekly data. With the debut of Windows 10 just 11 days behind us, a look at weekly data …
Simon Sharwood, 09 Aug 2015
Captain Mainwaring

Germans in ‘brains off, just follow orders' hospital data centre gaff

On-Call Welcome again to On-Call, our regular reader-contributed weekender in which we recount tales of the weird and wonderful things you've been asked to do at anti-social times in decidedly out-of-the-way places. This week, reader Michael tells us that "a couple of years back I was working for a large German university hospital". …
Simon Sharwood, 09 Aug 2015

Big, ugly, heavy laptops are surprise PC sales sweet spot

Things are so bad in the PC market that students of economics and physics are both probably keen to figure out just what's going on. But there's a singularity of sunshine in the market, says box-counter IDC, in the form of a surge in sales for big, ugly, heavy laptops, aka certified workstations. The “certified” is important …
Simon Sharwood, 07 Aug 2015
management management3

EMC and VMware doing the old in-out shows the board is on the job

Comment The finance, storage and virtualisation communities have all been abuzz in recent days, following industry chatter that EMC might buy back the shares in VMware it doesn't already own – or that VMware might buy EMC. Both suggestions have been met with many sharp intakes of breath as pundits contemplate these financial …
Simon Sharwood, 06 Aug 2015
Baby in t-shirt - with logo "I'm recording everything"

Techies told to GO FORTH AND MULTIPLY by Microsoft, Netflix

Two technology industry titans have discovered that starting a family is rather time-consuming and costly, responding with policies that offer decent incentives to go forth and multiply. Netflix set the ball rolling – ahem – with its Tuesday announcement of a policy allowing “an unlimited leave policy for new moms and dads …
Simon Sharwood, 06 Aug 2015

Junior defence staffer on trial for 'posting secret dossier to 4chan'

An Australian Department of Defence worker faces trial for allegedly posting a classified file on oddball message board 4chan. Michael Scerba, 24, is charged with “unauthorised access to or modification of restricted data," and "disclosure of information by a Commonwealth officer.” On Thursday, Fairfax Media reported that …
Simon Sharwood, 06 Aug 2015
The Gnu-look LibreOffice 5

LibreOffice 5.0 debuts, complete with fewer German code comments

The tenth version of open-source productivity suite Libre Office, Libre Office 5.0, has arrived. If that numbering is a little confusing, prepare for more brow-furrowing as this release is considered the fruit of the suite's third development cycle. The first started in 2010, when OpenOffice forked and work on LibreOffice 3.0 …
Simon Sharwood, 06 Aug 2015
Xen project hypervisor logo

Xen hardens up with zero-footprint guest introspection code

The Xen Project's had a nasty run with security of late, thanks to a run of five bad bugs, but has revealed plans to improve matters in the forthcoming version 4.6 of its open-source hypervisor. The Project's new weapon is called libbdvmi and addresses the fact that running security software on a guest virtual machine can be …
Simon Sharwood, 05 Aug 2015

Indian DEITY lifts national pr0n ban

India's ban on online pornography looks to have gone limp after four days, after a DEITY recommended a change of interpretation to the nation's ban on 857 sites. The DEITY in question is India's marvellously-named Department of Electronics and Information Technology. DEITY is India's acronym, as the deity.gov.in website …
Simon Sharwood, 05 Aug 2015
Redfish Logo

DMTF signs off Redfish server management spec v 1.0

The Distributed Management Task Force (DMTF) has announced the completion of the Redfish standard, an effort to enable management of heterogeneous computing resources at cloud scale. Redfish's backers are a who's who of enterprise computing players: Broadcom, Dell, Emerson, HP, Intel, Lenovo, Microsoft, Supermicro and VMware …
Simon Sharwood, 05 Aug 2015
Outlook for the web's new calendar

Microsoft changes 'Outlook Web Access' to 'Outlook on the web'

Fresh from showing glimpses of the next-generation Outlook Web Access client in a preview of Exchange Server 2016, Microsoft has now detailed just how the new version of the browser-bound Outlook will work. There's a new name for starters: “Outlook Web Access” is now “Outlook on the web”. Those marketers sure are earning their …
Simon Sharwood, 05 Aug 2015