Simon Sharwood

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Dudley Do-Right Royal Canadian Mounted Police

Canadian spooks release their own malware detection tool

Canada's Communications Security Establishment has open-sourced its own malware detection tool. The Communications Security Establishment (CSE) is a signals intelligence agency roughly equivalent to the United Kingdom's GCHQ, the USA's NSA and Australia's Signals Directorate. It has both intelligence-gathering and advisory …
Simon Sharwood, 20 Oct 2017
Data entry sign

Boss visited the night shift and found a car in the data centre

ON-CALL Another week is coming to an end and that means it's time for On-Call, The Register's Friday column in which we share readers' stories of being asked to do the unthinkable to satisfy the incorrigible. This week, meet “Glenn” who told us that back in the 1970s he worked for “a large multinational that had several IBM mainframes …
Simon Sharwood, 20 Oct 2017
reverse gear

Rackspace ends discount hosting for open source projects

Rackspace has ended a program under which it offered “generous discounts on hosting for more than 150 OSS projects and communities”, but flubbed the announcement. The closure of the program came to our attention after Reg operatives noticed the Tweet below from Eric Holscher, who posted an image in which it appears the …
Simon Sharwood, 20 Oct 2017
Boeing 777--2H6/ER 9M-MRI, an aircraft very similar to the one that operated Flight MH370. Pic: Ryan Fletcher/Shutterstock

MH 370 search to resume as Malaysia makes deal with US oceanographic company

Malaysia has struck a deal with US Company Ocean Infinity to resume the search for missing airliner MH370. The Malaysian Airlines Boeing 777 disappeared on March 8, 2014. None of the 239 people aboard have been seen or heard from since. It is presumed that the plane's crew was incapacitated, leading the 777 to fly until it ran …
Simon Sharwood, 20 Oct 2017
A giant space slug, or "Exogorth", from The Empire Strikes Back

Japan finds long, deep tunnel on the Moon

Japan's lunar orbiter has found a long, deep tunnel under the Moon's surface. The find is significant because Earth's Moon is a nasty place: surface temperatures vary wildly, there's radiation galore to contend with and Luna's lack of an atmosphere means the surface is subject to micrometeorite bombardments. Plans to colonise …
Simon Sharwood, 20 Oct 2017
IBM PC

IBM broke its cloud by letting three domain names expire

Back in September, IBM was left red-faced when its global load balancer and reverse DNS services fell over for 21 hours. At the time, IBM blamed the outage on third-party domain name registrar that was transferring some domains to another registrar. The sending registrar, IBM said, accidentally put the domains in a “hold state …
Simon Sharwood, 20 Oct 2017
Microsoft's Surface Book 2

Microsoft exec says ARM-powered Windows laptops have multi-day battery life

Microsoft says testing of Qualcomm-powered laptops running Windows 10 is well advanced and suggest it will be possible to use the devices for multiple days without charging their batteries. Qualcomm revealed its tie-up with Microsoft in December 2016, when it promised Windows-10-ready 64-bit ARMv8-compatible Snapdragon system- …
Simon Sharwood, 19 Oct 2017
Nice try

Citrix endorses tool that lets vSphere manage Xen Server

Citrix has endorsed a third-party product that lets you manage its Xen Server virtualization stack with VMware's vCenter Server. Citrix's argument for doing so is to keep the management tools you like, but move to a better hypervisor. Cute argument, Citrix. Shame it's fanciful. Here's why. Citrix decided to stop competing …
Simon Sharwood, 19 Oct 2017
Australia with ethernet cable

Australian government launches review of .au domain

Australia will conduct a review of how the nation's .au top level domain is managed. Minister for communications Mitch Fifield says it's needed because current arrangements have been in place since the year 2001, when the not-for-profit .au Domain Administration (auDA) got the job of operating and managing the .au domain. …
Simon Sharwood, 19 Oct 2017
Linux on multiple devices

Samsung to let proper Linux distros run on Galaxy smartmobes

Samsung has announced it will soon become possible to run actual proper Linux on its Note8, Galaxy S8 and S8+ smartphones – and even Linux desktops. Yeah, yeah, we know Android is built on Linux, but you know what we mean. Samsung said it's working on an app called “Linux on Galaxy” that will let users “run their preferred …
Simon Sharwood, 19 Oct 2017
Chinese computer keyboard

Like Uber, for socialism: Chinese leader calls for more use of AI, big data and sharing economy

Chinese leader Xi Jinping has outlined the nation's technological ambitions in his opening address to the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC). The Congress is staged every five years and commences with an address from the leader, in which he (always he, so far) outlines past accomplishments, gives …
Simon Sharwood, 19 Oct 2017
Windows Server

The age of six-monthly Windows Server updates starts … now!

Microsoft's vision of six-monthly Windows Server updates is now a reality. Announced just four months ago in June 2017, Redmond's new Windows Server plan will see it offer a “Long-term Servicing Channel” that behaves a lot like Windows Server does today: a big upgrade every three years or so and support for more than a decade …
Simon Sharwood, 18 Oct 2017
Raspberry Pi active cooling

Raspberry Pi burning up? Microsoft's recipe can save it and AI

Microsoft, of all people, has offered a recipe for cooling the Raspberry Pi 3. Redmond's put the Pi to work on some AI-related chores and found the poor wee things run rather hot when working near their peak capacity. As the infrared shots below show, the Pi runs quite cool at first (left) but after a few minutes of exertion …
Simon Sharwood, 18 Oct 2017
Burning copyright symbol. Photo by SHUTTERSTOCK

Linux kernel community tries to castrate GPL copyright troll

Linux kernel maintainer Greg Kroah-Hartman and several other senior Linux figures have published a “Linux Kernel Community Enforcement Statement” to be included in future Linux documentation, in order to ensure contributions to the kernel don't fall foul of copyright claims that have already seen a single developer win "at least …
Simon Sharwood, 18 Oct 2017
Bombardier C-series and Airbus A320

Aviation industry hits turbulence as Airbus buys into Bombardier’s new jetplanes

Airbus has struck a deal to buy a majority stake in Canadian plane-maker Bombardier's C Series Aircraft in a deal that will mean a shakeup for the global aviation market. Bombardier's C Series are regional jets with between 100 and 150 seats. Neither Airbus nor its main rival Boeing currently compete in this market. Airbus …
Simon Sharwood, 17 Oct 2017
Neon sign says 'Open'

Toshiba smacks down down 'ransomware killed flash factory' report

Toshiba has denied a report alleging its NAND flash factories were felled by ransomware. Taiwan's Digitimes, which often finds news from deep in the supply chain, on Monday reported that Toshiba halted production for three to six weeks while it sorted out a ransomware mess. Doing so, the report suggested, saw production of 100 …
Simon Sharwood, 17 Oct 2017
Migrating birds in the cloud

Nutanix launches VMware-to-Acropolis migration tool

Nutanix has taken another shot at VMware, this time with a virtual machine migration tool that takes VMs from ESXi to its own Acropolis hypervisor. Changing a VM's format is not rocket science, because VMs are described by metadata. Nutanix reckons “Xtract for VMs” therefore goes beyond the basics, “by automatically injecting …
Simon Sharwood, 17 Oct 2017
Australian money at a crime scene

Deloitte to wind up Plutus Payroll, promises contact with contractors 'within 20 biz days'

The Supreme Court of the Australian State of New South Wales has appointed liquidators to Plutus Payroll, the payroll services provider that lured thousands of IT contractors with a free service but has since been alleged to be a tax-skimming scam. The appointment means that contractors who have not yet heard from Deloitte …
Simon Sharwood, 16 Oct 2017
elon musk

Elon Musk says Harry Potter and Bob the Builder will get SpaceX flying to Mars

SpaceX, Tesla and Boring Company CEO Elon Musk has suggested Bob the Builder and Harry Potter will help his space exploration efforts. In a Reddit Ask Me Anything session dedicated to the Big F**cking Rocket, but which quickly veered into discussion of the Big F**cking Spaceship (BFS) he plans to fly to Mars, the magnate …
Simon Sharwood, 16 Oct 2017

Linus Torvalds lauds fuzzing for improving Linux security

Linus Torvalds release notification for Linux 4.14's fifth release candidate contains an interesting aside: the Linux Lord says fuzzing is making a big difference to the open source operating system. Torvalds' announcement says Linux kernel 4.14 is coming along nicely, with this week's release candidate pleasingly small and “ …
Simon Sharwood, 16 Oct 2017
Assange

Assange thanks USA for forcing him to invest in booming Bitcoin

Endurance couch-surfer and WikiLeaker-in-chief Julian Assange has thanked US authorities for the banking blockade that made it hard to donate fiat currencies to his organisation, because it inadvertently enriched the organisation. The blockade first appeared in 2010, after the United States expressed its ire at WikiLeaks' …
Simon Sharwood, 16 Oct 2017
drone

Drone smacks commercial passenger plane in Canada

Canada's transport minster has told drone operators to stay away from airports after a remotely piloted craft bonked a passenger plane during its final approach to Jean Lesage International Airport in Québec City. Minister Marc Garneau hasn't revealed the model of the drone, but we do know that it hit a plane operated by …
Simon Sharwood, 16 Oct 2017
Twitter flock

Twitter to be 'aggressive' enforcer of new, stronger rules

Twitter has reacted to last week's criticism arising from its suspension of actor actress Rose McGowan's account, after she strongly criticised alleged sex fiend Harvey Weinstein – by announcing it will soon implement and aggressively police new community standards. The micro-blogging network's co-funder and CEO Jack Dorsey …
Simon Sharwood, 16 Oct 2017
Resignation letter

Samsung Electronics CEO resigns over bribery scandal

Samsung Electronics vice-chairman and CEO Kwon Oh-hyun has announced his resignation, citing the “unprecedented crisis” of the bribery scandal that saw Samsung vice-chairman Lee Jae-yong jailed for bribery. Oh-hyun's statement on his resignation says he thinks the company needs to renew its management. “I believe that time …
Simon Sharwood, 13 Oct 2017
Upside down user

Software update turned my display and mouse upside-down, says user

On-Call Welcome again to On-Call, The Register's weekly wander through readers' recollections of tech support traumas. This week, meet “Alan” who once had a gig as “both sysadmin and developer in charge of an image analysis system linked to microscopes for analysis of bacteria in a University hospital.” “These systems consisted of a …
Simon Sharwood, 13 Oct 2017

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