Simon Sharwood

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Veritas considers 'restructuring' another two offices, with 350+ pink slips possible

“Veritas” is the Latin word for truth, a fact we mention because data management software vendor Veritas has offered The Register a revised explanation for the closure of its support desk in Sydney, Australia, after we received information that told a different story. That document was a workforce plan dated July 2017 and, in …
Simon Sharwood, 18 Sep 2017
reverse gear

WordPress has adverse reaction to Facebook's React.js licence

Automattic, the company behind hosting service WordPress.com, has decided to stop using Facebook's React.js library, citing legal concerns. WordPress' founding developer Matt Mullenweg – who also founded WordPress.com – explains the decision by noting that Automattic has used React since 2015, when it put the code to work in …
Simon Sharwood, 18 Sep 2017
Command line icon

Microsoft teases web-based Windows Server management console

Microsoft's Ignite gabfest kicks off in a fortnight and Redmond will use it to show off a shiny new Windows Server admin GUI that includes tools previously only available in PowerShell. Project “Honolulu”, as the tool is known for now, appears to address two issues for Microsoft. One is that it says Windows Server users say “ …
Simon Sharwood, 18 Sep 2017
Jabra evolve 80 noise canceling headphones

Noise-canceling headphones with a DO NOT DISTURB light can't silence your critics

Ears-on test The Register's Sydney eyrie will soon be demolished, so Vulture South needs a new office and we're probably going to nestle into a shared workspace. Which is why I decided to try out the Jabra Evolve 80, a pair of noise-canceling headphones that feature red lights on the earpieces designed to warn people you do not wish to be …
Simon Sharwood, 18 Sep 2017
Golden Linux penguin

Linux 4.14 'getting very core new functionality' says Linus Torvalds

Linus Torvalds has unsentimentally loosed release candidate one of Linux 4.14 a day before the 26th anniversary of the Linux-0.01 release, and told penguinistas to expect a few big changes this time around. “This has been an 'interesting' merge window,” Torvalds wrote on the Linux Kernel Mailing List. “It's not actually all …
Simon Sharwood, 18 Sep 2017
Elvis in Las Vegas. EDItorial use only - photo by Maridav via Shutterstock

VMworld schwag heist CCTV didn't work and casino wouldn't share it

The alleged theft of marketing material uncomplimentary to hyperconverged heavyweight Nutanix appears to have become a cold case. As reported by The Register at VMworld 2017, hyperconverged contender Maxta printed badges bearing the motto “You can't have it your way with Nutanix” and stored them in private areas of its stand …
Simon Sharwood, 17 Sep 2017
Humiliation banishment ostracism

Equifax's IT leaders 'retire' as company says it knew about the bug that brought it down

Equifax's chief information officer and chief security officer “are retiring” and the company has admitted it knew Apache Struts needed patching in March, but looks to have fluffed attempts to secure the software. The retirements and more details about the company's mega-breach are revealed in a new entry to …
Simon Sharwood, 17 Sep 2017
Tripping over

Video nasty lets VMware guests run code on hosts

VMware's given vAdmins a busy Friday by disclosing three nasties to patch. One's a video nasty dubbed CVE-2017-4924 and impacts VMware ESXi, and the desktop hypervisors Workstation & Fusion. This one's “an out-of-bounds write vulnerability in SVGA driver device*” , an old virtual graphics card toolkit. The bug “may allow a …
Simon Sharwood, 15 Sep 2017
Facebook Wow Sad Angry

Facebook let advertisers target 'Jew-haters'

Facebook has blamed its users for the fact that advertisers on The Social Network™ could target their ads to “Jew-haters” and other anti-Semitic terms. The nasty ad targeting was uncovered by ProPublica, a “nonprofit newsroom that produces investigative journalism with moral force.” The publication's journos experimented with …
Simon Sharwood, 15 Sep 2017
Identical twins in pink and blue suits

User worked with wrong app for two weeks, then complained to IT that data had gone missing

ON-CALL Welcome again to On-Call, the Friday feature in which we help Reg readers to recount times when they were asked to fix problems that should never have happened. This week, meet “Terrence” who told us about his time working as a sysadmin for local government. “My main area of work was the system used for revenues and benefits …
Simon Sharwood, 15 Sep 2017
The Babypod vaginal speaker

Boffin wins (Ig) Nobel prize asking if cats can be liquid

2017's Ig Nobel prizes have been awarded, again with the aim of shining a light on science that first makes you laugh and then makes you think. Some of this year's most interesting awards are: Physics – To Antoine Fardin, for using fluid dynamics to probe the question "Can a Cat Be Both a Solid and a Liquid?” in On the …
Simon Sharwood, 15 Sep 2017
Obi wan droids

AWS users felt a great disturbance in the cloud, as S3 cried out in terror

The world received an unpleasant reminder of what it's like to live without the cloud on Thursday, after Amazon Web Services' Simple Storage Service fluttered for an hour or so. The incident invoked memories of the S3 outage in March 2017 that caused interruptions to plenty of web services and apps, sparking much rending of …
Simon Sharwood, 15 Sep 2017
Sydney Harbour Bridge in the cloud

Veritas shrinks Sydney office, slashes 60-something support staff

Storage management software vendor Veritas is shrinking its Sydney office, a move The Register understands will mean the loss of over 65 jobs in the support team currently stationed in the Australian city. Veritas told us the changes have been made because the company “continually reviews its real estate holdings in an effort …
Simon Sharwood, 15 Sep 2017
Where the TPCx-IoT benchmark does its business

IoT gateways get a benchmark from the TPC

The Transaction Processing Performance Council (TPC) has decided the world needs a benchmark for the Internet of Things, or at least for the gateways that will do initial processing of data that things generate. The new “TPCx-IoT Benchmark” has set records before it's been used in anger: committee chair and Cisco's CTO for …
Simon Sharwood, 15 Sep 2017

Westpac brings authentication system in-house, binning IBM

Australian bank Westpac has decided the time is right to bring its Distributed System Access service in-house, rather than continue an arrangement that saw it tended by IBM. The Register understands that Distributed System Access (DSA) is the Bank's authentication infrastructure and is used to manage user accounts, group …
Simon Sharwood, 15 Sep 2017
FTP

Chrome to label FTP sites insecure

Google's Chrome browser will soon label file transfer protocol (FTP) services insecure. Google employee and Chrome security team member Mike West yesterday announced the plan on the Chromium.org security-dev mailing list. “As part of our ongoing effort to accurately communicate the transport security status of a given page, …
Simon Sharwood, 15 Sep 2017
Radiant heater

AMD Ryzen beats Intel Core i7 as a heater (that's also a server)

French cloud concern Qarnot wants to use AMD processors to heat water. No, this isn't a cruel joke at the expense of thermally inefficient silicon. Instead it's a deliberate plan to use CPUs' heat-producing powers for good. Qarnot makes a device called the “ Q.rad” that uses three CPUs to provide heat and serve as a node in a …
Simon Sharwood, 14 Sep 2017
Trello desktop app

Trello boards the desktop with Mac and Windows apps

Trello has figured out that there's life beyond the confines of a browser, so has created desktop apps for MacOS and Windows. The recently-Atlassian-acquired outfit says it's created the apps because users want them. Badly. Because Trello tends to get lost. The announcement of the app says “As you’re reading this post, the …
Simon Sharwood, 14 Sep 2017
fail

Missed patch caused Equifax data breach

Equifax has revealed that the cause of its massive data breach was a flaw it should have patched weeks before it was attacked. The company has updated its www.equifaxsecurity2017.com/ site with a new “A Progress Update for Consumers” that opens as follows: Equifax has been intensely investigating the scope of the intrusion …
Simon Sharwood, 14 Sep 2017
Kaspersky

Kaspersky shrugs off government sales ban proposal

Kaspersky Lab has laughed off attempts to have its wares banned from US government computers by saying it hardly sold to the Feds anyway. “Given that U.S. government sales have not been a significant part of the company’s activity in North America, Kaspersky Lab is exploring opportunities to better optimize the Washington D.C …
Simon Sharwood, 13 Sep 2017

Cassini probe's death dive to send data at just 27 kilobits per second

Space is nasty and sending data across 83 light-minutes of it isn't easy, so the Cassini probe's death dive into the clouds of Saturn will be an instruments-only affair undocumented by photographs. Cassini has surveyed Saturn since 2004 but is out of fuel, so will be crashed into Saturn instead of leaving it an an orbit that …
Simon Sharwood, 13 Sep 2017
Bitcoin

North Korea attacks Bitcoin bods to swell its war chest says FireEye

North Korea appears to have commenced online attacks aimed at acquiring Bitcoin so it can evade sanctions. South Korea's Cyber Warfare Research Center alleged a few weeks ago that at least one Bitcoin exchange had been targeted by a Nork hack, and now FireEye threat researcher Luke McNamara writes that “since May 2017, we have …
Simon Sharwood, 13 Sep 2017

Slack re-invents the extranet and shared Notes databases with cross-company teams

Slack has re-invented some stuff Lotus Notes did 20 years ago and declared it will make you more productive. Slack's big new thing is called “Shared Channels”. They “work just like the Slack channels you’re used to using with your internal teams, but connect two separate organizations, giving both sides a shared space to work …
Simon Sharwood, 13 Sep 2017
Nerd in shower photo via Shutterstock

Linus Torvalds' lifestyle tips for hackers: Be like me, work in a bathrobe, no showers before noon

Linux Lord Linus Torvalds has offered some lifestyle advice for hackers, suggesting they adopt his admittedly-unglamorous lifestyle but also his ethos of working on things that matter. In an on-stage interview with Linux Foundation founder and executive director Jim Zemlin at the Open Source summit in Los Angeles on Monday, …
Simon Sharwood, 12 Sep 2017
Mr T

VMware pushes NSX deeper into containers, security

VMware's released a new version of NSX-T, the version of its NSX network virtualization tool that runs in multiple environments. NSX-T's roots lie in NSX-MH, the early version of NSX VMware created not long after acquiring software-defined networking pioneer Nicira. Before VMware acquired Nicira, it made sense for the company …
Simon Sharwood, 12 Sep 2017

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