Articles about Hardware

No entry

Google tells Android's Linux kernel to toughen up and fight off those horrible hacker bullies

The security folks at Google have been detailing how they intend to harden up Android against attack. In a blog post, Jeff Vander Stoep of the mobile operating system's security team said that in the next build of the OS, named Nougat, Google is going to be addressing two key areas of the Linux kernel that reside at the heart …
Iain Thomson, 29 Jul 2016
Customer service motivation cube

Server vendor has special help desk for lying, incompetent sysadmins

On-Call Welcome again to On-Call, our festive Friday frolic through readers' recollections of jobs gone bad. This week, something a little different from reader “DB” who says “I do server hardware warranty support for a known enterprise server vendor.” DB's been at it for 20 years and says he's spent his career working on PCs, …
Simon Sharwood, 29 Jul 2016

Microsoft axes 2,850 more Windows Phone, sales staff – a week after Justin Timberlake sang on stage for them

Vid Microsoft is laying off a further 2,850 smartphone and sales staffers on top of the 1,850 workers it axed in May. The job cuts were revealed in paperwork filed on Thursday with US financial watchdog the SEC. The doomed staff will leave the business by the end of next June. They all work in Microsoft's sales teams and its …
Smartphone showing Chinese flag

China decrees it will grow world-class enterprise vendors by the year 2025

China has decreed it will grow several more world-class, multinational enterprise technology vendors by 2025. The executive of the Middle Kingdom's State Council met this week, and issued some new policy pronouncements along the way. The key one for the global information technology industries is called the “Outline of …
Simon Sharwood, 29 Jul 2016
Macbook 2015. Pic: Apple

Ditch your Macs, Dell tells EMC staff

Exclusive Staff at EMC who go out into the world to meet customers have been told their Apple Macs aren't allowed to come with them. Amid Dell's looming takeover of EMC, an edict has been issued insisting that Dell customers must only ever see Dell laptops during meetings and consulting engagements, EMC insiders have told The Register …
Simon Sharwood, 29 Jul 2016
Nvidia GeForce

Bought a GTX 970? Congrats, Nvidia owes you thirty bucks

Graphics goliath Nvidia has agreed to a settlement that will see it pay $30 to American gamers who purchased its GTX 970 graphics cards and can file a valid claim. The pay-out deal [PDF] settles a class-action claim accusing the company of misleading consumers on the specs of the gaming card's memory and processor capabilities …
Shaun Nichols, 28 Jul 2016
Mambo Unlimited's gold bug. Pic: Steve Caplin

Avaya data leak bug

A group of security researchers have disclosed a now-fixed bug in Avaya data centre hardware that allows shortest-path first (SPB) bridges to be traversed. It's not remotely exploitable, but it's worth remembering that there's plenty of concern among data centre customers and admins that tenant traffic is private, both from …
shutterstock_170724905-Fibre

How to upgrade cities to 40Gbps broadband without replacing today's fiber network

Verizon will soon test communications gear that can provide next-generation 40Gbps fiber broadband services in America. Crucially, the hardware is compatible with today's fiber lines, meaning it can be deployed to massively boost speeds without the need to dig up and replace the miles of cables running underneath our cities …
Shaun Nichols, 27 Jul 2016
Dead battery

Microsoft blames dying Surface Pro 3 batteries on software bug

Microsoft has admitted that the battery problems hitting some Surface Pro 3 owners aren't down to hardware failure, but rather a software issue. Redmond's support forums have been inundated with complaints about the high-end fondleslab's battery life. The problem only appears to affect hardware that uses batteries from third- …
Iain Thomson, 27 Jul 2016
Q in James Bond

NATO holds up £2.5bn platter of IT procurement deals: Help yourselves

Anti-Soviet defence pact NATO's IT division wants to award €3bn (£2.5bn) worth of “cyber, air and missile defence” contracts, spanning everything from buying new keyboards to improving space satellites. The NATO Communication and Information (NCI) Agency's bumper pack of potential deals includes a £2bn (€2.5bn) satellite …
Gareth Corfield, 27 Jul 2016
Man relaxes, stretches out, outs his feet up on a cloud.... Fun but hammy stock pic. Photo by Shutterstock

Getting comfortable with cloud-based security: Whom to trust to do what

There are some bits of computing that you just don’t want to trust other people with. They’re just too sensitive. But at the same time, there are some things that people can do as well or better than you, for a lower cost. Finding a balance between the two can be tricky, but useful. Take cybersecurity as an example. It’s …
Danny Bradbury, 27 Jul 2016

Explo-Xen! Bunker buster bug breaks out guests from hypervisor

Code dive A super-bug in the Xen hypervisor may allow privileged code running in guests to escape to the underlying host. This means, on vulnerable systems, malicious administrators within virtual machines can potentially break out of their confines and start interfering with the host server and other guests. This could be really bad …
Chris Williams, 27 Jul 2016
Far Cry 4 in game at 4K

AMD, Nvidia in pro GPU battle

Rival chip designers AMD and Nvidia continue to fight for dominance in the professional graphics processor market. Here's a summary of what's gone down this week: AMD is cooking up a Radeon Solid State Graphics (SSG) card that has 1TB of M.2 flash memory. It'll be powerful enough to scrub through 8K video at 90 frames per …
Chris Williams, 26 Jul 2016
Verizon corporate building

Verizon blames striking workers for dent in sales

Fresh from its $4.8bn acquisition of Yahoo!, Verizon says its sales dropped five per cent year-on-year in its latest quarter, the three months to the end of June. Essentially, US telecom giant's wireless and wireline revenues fell over the year-ago quarter. Here's a summary of VZ's Q2 2016 results: Revenues of $30.5bn were …
Shaun Nichols, 26 Jul 2016

BlackBerry snips Alcatel label off a midrange biz 'Droid, sells it for $299

BlackBerry today took the wraps off its first phone of the year, the cryptically named DTEK50. As rumoured, BlackBerry has based its second Android phone on a reference design from TCL, which owns Alcatel, and "security hardened" it with BlackBerry's Android. BlackBerry also confirmed that a monoblock QWERTY Android was on the …
Andrew Orlowski, 26 Jul 2016
Two fingers, photo via Shutterstock

EMC insiders say Salesforce has ordered $75m of its kit

EMC landed a punch on behalf of tech's old guard after it won a $75m deal to furnish Salesforce with shiny new on-premises storage hardware, sources have claimed. Salesforce last month took infrastructure services away from its cloud server staff and put them into the hands of AWS in a contract valued at $400m. But company …
Paul Kunert, 26 Jul 2016
Battle for ctrl

Washed out summer? Fear ye not: DVDs for DevOps droogs

Stob Hurrah! Summer is at last well under way, so how better to pass the weekends than pulling the curtains on the rainscape, lolling on the sofa and inhaling a few dozen hours of downloaded TV? I am aware that such an introduction sets up certain expectations. However, rather than treat you to ill-informed speculation regarding …
Verity Stob, 26 Jul 2016
Splash Screen for classic adventure game The Hobbit

Seminal adventure game The Hobbit finally ported to the Dragon 64

1982-vintage adventure game The Hobbit has been ported to the Dragon 64, 34 years after the program's release. The back story: in 1982, The Hobbit was the hottest ticket in gaming, thanks to its addition of big bold graphics and a syntax that did away with adventure games' annoying habit of allowing only a limited set of verbs …
Simon Sharwood, 26 Jul 2016
Money down the drain

I'm good, I'm fine, solid quarter, real well ... pants Sprint as it limps past, spilling $300m

US telco Sprint says it is bringing in new customers by the boatload, despite another quarter in which its losses reached well into nine figures. The fourth-largest carrier in the US logged a net loss of $302m as it continues a campaign to rebuild its business model. For the first quarter of Sprint's financial 2016, ended …
Shaun Nichols, 25 Jul 2016
Surface_ripples

EMC XtremIO has its quirks but rumours of its death are overblown

Comment A rumour from last week implied EMC was considering shutting down its XtremIO product line. How likely is it – and is there any basis to EMC taking this direction? The rumour seemed to come from a number of separate parties, although we can’t exclude a clever viral marketing campaign from a competitor. XtremIO history EMC …
Chris Evans, 25 Jul 2016
UK pound crashes after Brexit

Lenovo: Our gear will be 10% more pricey from 1 August

Exclusive Lenovo has confirmed the price of its hardware is going to get more expensive in the UK from the start of next month. It is the latest vendor to react to the downward swing in the value of the British pound vs the US dollar. Confirmation of the double digit price hike – seen by us – was sent to channel partners late last week …
Paul Kunert, 25 Jul 2016
Vibrant Evening Sunset At Twistleton Scar In North Yorkshire, UK. Photo by Shutterstock

Crashed and alone in a remote location: When paid help is no help

This Damn War This Damn War image via Shutterstock I took the plunge and became a freelance IT consultant in 2001. Through an unlikely series of coincidences (former colleague from London goes to travel show in France and bumps into two guys from Yorkshire who are looking for a software and database architect) I ended up in North Yorkshire …
Dave Cartwright, 25 Jul 2016

White House to bung electric car industry $4.5bn in loans

The White House has said the US federal government will underwrite loans totaling $4.5bn to expand the use of electric cars. But before you go rushing to Elon Musk asking for a set of Falcon doors, note that it is only for building out charging infrastructure. The Department of Energy has expanded its existing loan program to …
Kieren McCarthy, 22 Jul 2016
 French bulldog puppy wears plastic devil horns and cute expression. Photo by Shutterstock

Diablo conjures up hell of a DIMM: 128GB NAND pretend-RAM summoned

Diablo Tech's Memory1 128GB DDR4 system memory module is now available, and is claimed to be the highest-capacity system memory on the market. Workloads such as big data analytics, caching, in-memory databases and complex web applications that need large memory spaces can use it with no changes to hardware, operating systems …
Chris Mellor, 22 Jul 2016

Intel and pals chuck money at another Fibre Channel killer

+Comment Kazan Networks just got $4.5m A-round funding from Intel, Samsung Ventures and Western Digital Corp for its storage array access acceleration technology. So what? So Fibre Channel and iSCSI external array access are poised to be devastated by NVME over Fabrics (NVMeF) and Kazan is developing a hot little ASIC number that it …
Chris Mellor, 22 Jul 2016
Twilight Zone, 'Time Enough At Last'

Free Windows 10 upgrade: Time is running out – should you do it?

Microsoft's free Windows 10 upgrade offer runs out this Friday, 29 July 2016, one year after the initial release, and a few days before the Anniversary Update. "This is more than a one-time upgrade: once a Windows device is upgraded to Windows 10, we will continue to keep it current for the supported lifetime of the device – …
Tim Anderson, 22 Jul 2016
Mellanox bluefield

Mellanox plans to SoC it to storage speed with Multi-ARM BlueField

InfiniBand and Ethernet adaptor biz Mellanox has storage acceleration SoCs coming to provide faster external array access across NVMe fabrics. Mellanox CEO Eyal Waldman talked about NVME over Fabrics (NVMeF) in his company's second quarter 2016 earnings call. His company makes InfiniBand and Ethernet networking devices, and is …
Chris Mellor, 22 Jul 2016
Burning money, photo via Shutterstock

AT&T: Money? Oh, sure, no I'm fine – I'm doing great (if you ignore my phone business)

AT&T says wireless revenues are down in what was an otherwise solid quarter for the US telecom giant. Its second quarter of 2016 [PDF] period was, overall, a success thanks to solid returns from the newly-acquired DirecTV. They were, however, tempered by falling revenues in other areas. Quarterly revenues were $40.5bn, up 22 …
Shaun Nichols, 21 Jul 2016
Broken phone

Tight-wad Apple repair techs swapped our damaged iGear with used kit – lawsuit

Apple has been presented with a class-action lawsuit filed by customers who say the expensive electronics giant replaced their damaged devices with used models. More specifically, the suit [PDF] filed to the Northern California District Court alleges the Cupertino behemoth has been replacing damaged or defective devices with …
Shaun Nichols, 21 Jul 2016

Snowden's anti-snoop tool

NSA whistleblower Ed Snowden and hardware guru Andrew “Bunnie” Huang have designed a gizmo that wraps around your iPhone 6 and alerts you when the mobe unexpectedly leaks your location. Basically, if you put your smartphone into airplane mode – ie: maintain radio silence – to avoid being tracked, the gadget will kick off if …
Shaun Nichols, 21 Jul 2016
Ashlee Vance, Elon Musk: How the Billionaire CEO of SpaceX and Tesla is shaping our Future

Fear not, humanity – Saint Elon has finished part two of his world-saving 'master plan'

Solar-panel roofs on cars, compact SUVs, and high-passenger-density urban transport are all part of Elon Musk's self-titled "master plan, part deux" for the world. The SpaceX and Tesla Motors supremo has just finished writing the second part of his blueprint for the future of humanity. The ultimate goal is sustainability, Musk …
Katyanna Quach, 21 Jul 2016

DDoS, the cloud and you

Private cloud computing can be a useful way to offload some computing overhead and manage your costs effectively. The switch to operating expenses from capital expenses, the elasticity, the business continuity benefits – they're all real. But so are the dangers of DDoS disaster. There's a problem with moving your servers and …
Danny Bradbury, 21 Jul 2016

The cloud ain't making it rain for Intel right now: Tech giants pause server chip sales

Analysis Intel's stock price fell on Wednesday after it became clear the processor maker is not selling quite as many server processor chips as investors had hoped. The Silicon Valley giant reckons its CPU sales into data centers will hit double-digit growth by the end of the year. So far, with half the year gone, we're staring at mid- …
Chris Williams, 21 Jul 2016
Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego

What do you call a spreadsheet with decent numbers for a change? qualcomm_q3_2016.xlsx

Qualcomm is crediting strong sales in China and an infusion of back royalty payments for a better-than-expected quarterly return. The California-based mobile chip designer said that it was able to turn around a lacking performance last quarter thanks to improved licensing revenues from smartphone sales. Additionally, Qualcomm …
Shaun Nichols, 21 Jul 2016
Acronis_Red_Bull_950

Acronis 12 is fastest backup product out there

French data protection supplier Acronis is making a big move into enterprise data protection with a comprehensive new software release, Acronis 12, a beefed-up marketing team, and a profile-raising one race-only sponsorship deal with the Toro Rosso Formula 1 Grands Prix team. The new SW "takes 35.6 minutes to backup a 180GB …
Chris Mellor, 20 Jul 2016
Man loads in blanket into the washing machine. Photo by Shutterstock

Kaminario flashes service guarantees

Kaminario, the all flash storage array vendor, has come up with six individual guarantees - assurances - that build on its original 2013 Perfomance Consistency Guarantee programme. Basically, Kaminario says you're safer buying K2 arrays in performance and maintenance cost terms than other arrays. These kinds of flash array …
Chris Mellor, 20 Jul 2016
Woman holds up PBX phone in office. Pic by Shutterstock

Really Scary Telecoms Stuff? Nah – telephony's just an app

In 2009, I moved to Jersey to become the network and telecoms manager for a multinational company. It was tremendous fun, as I had a variety of kit to play with. I tended to favour the Mitel 3300 ICP range (still do, actually) that supported about half of our offices, and I did the various engineer courses and exams for the …
Dave Cartwright, 20 Jul 2016
Two eggs hugging couple arranged in carton

VMware/Cisco software-defined spat thaws as ACI comes to vSphere

When VMware acquired Nicira and released its NSX product, it looked like Virtzilla and Cisco were on a collision course. But now Cisco has added a vCenter plug-in to the new version of its own software-defined networking (SDN) software, one of several signs that the two companies are working together while also competing to …
Simon Sharwood, 20 Jul 2016
Apple patent drawing

Shock: Apple patents the phone book

Apple has been granted a patent that suggests its future MacBooks will come with built-in phone hardware, giving the notebooks mobile broadband connectivity. The patent, granted by the US Patent and Trademark Office, describes a method for embedding high-speed LTE hardware into the shell of a notebook computer, using the …
Shaun Nichols, 19 Jul 2016

BlackBerry chief: We don't have to make phones to make phones

BlackBerry CEO John Chen said his company has an internal project to bring Android security up to the level of its BlackBerry 10 platform, which should bear fruit after the release of Android N. He also hinted at a future based around brand and technology licensing. "We have a tremendous amount of technology. We can stay in …
Andrew Orlowski, 19 Jul 2016

Big Blue's boxes: No IBM storage numbers, but it's a drop

+Comment The storage hardware portion of IBM's quarterly revenues continued its long-term decline, with a 13 per cent annual drop. It's a nice welcome for incoming storage boss Ed Walsh with the storage hardware decline glaringly obvious. We don't know the storage software numbers within IBM's systems segment, and nor do we know …
Chris Mellor, 19 Jul 2016

Envy NVMe? Mangstor flashes $5m cash to bulk up array line

The NVMe-over-fabrics flash array startup Mangstor has had a $5m funding round. The company connects NVMe flash drives in its NX array to access servers using an NVMe over Fabrics link for access that is practically as fast as accessing local flash drives. It recently added a burst buffer capability to speed data access …
Chris Mellor, 19 Jul 2016
Do the right thing on the internet of things

If managing PCs is still hard, good luck patching 100,000 internet things

Internet of Things (IoT) hype focuses on the riches that will rain from the sky once humanity connects the planet, but mostly ignores what it will take to build and operate fleets of things. And the operational side of things could be hell. “IT can barely keep their desktops patched,” Splunk chief technology officer Snehal …
Simon Sharwood, 19 Jul 2016
Xen project logo

Xen roadmap hints

Xen Project chairperson Lars Kurth has revealed some future directions for the open source virtualisation project. In a new Q&A to mark the recent 4.7 release, Kurth said he expects future versions will continue to offer big revisions to core features. “Some new capabilities, such as restartable Dom0’s, and additional …
Simon Sharwood, 19 Jul 2016
results

What's big, blue and red all over? IBM. Profit, z Systems down, cloud up

IBM today reported its second quarter financial results and the figures don't look good, with profits falling nearly 30 per cent. The venerable computing giant did perform slightly better than analysts expected, however GAAP revenues and profits are both down year-on-year. It's the 17th straight quarter of revenue declines for …
Iain Thomson, 18 Jul 2016

For $800 you can buy internet engineers' answer to US government spying

The long-awaited response from internet engineers to Edward Snowden's revelations of mass surveillance by the US government has been launched in Berlin. The CrypTech project launched an alpha prototype of its open-source crypto-vault at the 96th meeting of the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF), and held a two-day workshop …
Kieren McCarthy, 18 Jul 2016

Good gravy, Toshiba QLC flash chips are getting closer

Backgrounder Toshiba is pushing flash chip capacity higher on two fronts: through, er, Through Silicon Vias (TSVs) and by increasing a cell's bit count to four. We covered the TSV notion here and now take a look at quadruple level cell (QLC) flash technology. Toshiba will present on this and TSVs in a keynote session at the August 8-11 …
Chris Mellor, 18 Jul 2016
Man loads in blanket into the washing machine. Photo by Shutterstock

Facebook and Google show how the world really will be blanketed in 5G

Facebook has outdone even Google recently, in its efforts to shake up the mobile industry and accelerate the delivery of broadband services (and its revenue generators) to the entire planet. This is no longer just about using balloons and new spectrum to push affordable wireless access to underserved communities. It is about …
Wireless Watch, 18 Jul 2016
linux_tux_cloud_648

Intel's SGX tiptoes towards Linux

Intel has fulfilled a promise made in April to open-source a Linux driver for its SGX technology. SGX – Software Guard Extensions – first landed in 2013, and allows programmers to lock up code and data inside containers enforced by the CPU. The idea is to create an environment to assure people "clouding" their enterprise …

Windows 10 a failure by Microsoft's own metric – it won't hit one billion devices by mid-2018

When Windows 10 launched, Microsoft claimed it would have the new operating system on a billion devices by mid-2018. That isn't going to happen, however, Redmond has now admitted. For the past year, Microsoft has offered the new OS as a free upgrade for both desktop and mobile users (provided the phone can handle it in the …
Iain Thomson, 15 Jul 2016