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Cisco Exits the Consumer Market, Sells Linksys To Belkin

Dewin Re:WTB Cisco Switch (284 comments)

I remember having a Linksys WRT54G with a legitimate hardware issue years ago

Okay, I bought the story at Linksys but lost it at WRT54G. Though I suppose Cisco could have botched the newer hardware revisions ;)

Our WRT54G is about... 9 years old. Still runs as our primary router with nary a hiccup. I managed to get a hold of 3 WRT600Ns as well -- the one that I've actually put dd-wrt on and put into service (with the intent of expanding our wifi coverage to the basement) can't actually hold a decent connection speed (speed from wireless device to router is fine, speed from router to WAN is fine as evidenced by an Ethernet-connected PC, speed from wireless router to WAN is abysmal...)

about a year and a half ago

OCZ Launches Vector Indilinx Barefoot 3 SSD, First All In-House Design

Dewin Re:I'll stick with mechanical (122 comments)

Personally, I run a hybrid approach: I have 2x1TB spinny disk drives mirrored, and an 80GB SSD (soon to be 240GB SSD, hurray for Black Friday deals from newegg) for anything that needs to be fast.

about 2 years ago

Ask Slashdot: Should Hosting Companies Have Change Freezes?

Dewin Re:POS (138 comments)

In my experience, they are one and the same.

about a year ago

Aircraft Carriers In Space

Dewin Re:Babylon 5 (409 comments)

That's part of EVE's lore, actually, from the few months I tried it.

about 2 years ago

More Evidence That Multitasking Reduces Productivity

Dewin Re:Propose addition to the dictionary (133 comments)

Were you two saying something? I was suffering from some, umm, what's the word? Let's make one up. Distractions. Yeah, that's it. Oooh shiny!

about 2 years ago

Motorola's First Intel-Based Handset Launches In UK

Dewin Re:battery life (64 comments)

My phone (a Samsung Vibrant, or Galaxy S1 if you will) charges from empty to full on 2 hours.

Doubling the charge time for double the capacity doesn't seem like a problem to me, since it usually charges overnight -- and it still leaves the option of a half charge in the same amount of time for the same amount of battery life I have now.

Of course, I sometimes carry one of these around, but that's mainly because tethering is a huge battery drain. Oh, and that+the phone easily fit in one pocket, with the Nexus 7 that is using the phone-provided wifi in the other.

about 2 years ago

PostgreSQL 9.2 Out with Greatly Improved Scalability

Dewin Re:Range data types (146 comments)

Before 9.2, I did this (for timestamp ranges only) using Jeff Davis's Temporal Extensions for PostgreSQL, which I've submitted a few patches to.

Which really is the direct predecessor of 9.2's Range Type support (from the same developer, too.)

Heh, I should have guessed.

It was a few years ago, but we actually tossed around some ideas on a standard format for applying the range concepts to types besides timestamps. One of the issues then was that a small handful of built-in types have a notion of infinity/-infinity, but some (e.g. ints) do not -- yet ranges really need to support the notion, even a range of ints. It looks like the 9.2 implementation uses its own definition for -infinity/+infinity unrelated to the type in question, which thinking about it now might not have been the best decision (at least, without the ability to define that [,y] and [-infinity,y] are synonymous) since -infinity (as defined by range types) is less than all other values including -infinity (as defined by the contained type).

about 2 years ago

PostgreSQL 9.2 Out with Greatly Improved Scalability

Dewin Re:Range data types (146 comments)

Optimization of a constraint involving date ranges is a bit more difficult than you might think, and having it as one unified type makes queries a lot cleaner and indexes a lot more efficient (if done as GiST indexes anyways)

Old: WHERE (a.starttime BETWEEN b.starttime AND b.endtime OR b.starttime BETWEEN a.starttime AND a.endtime)
New: WHERE a.timerange @@ b.timerange

The speedup when you're doing things like trying to find overlaps between two lists of tens of thousands of ranges each is phenomenal.

Before 9.2, I did this (for timestamp ranges only) using Jeff Davis's Temporal Extensions for PostgreSQL, which I've submitted a few patches to.

about 2 years ago

Secret Security Questions Are a Joke

Dewin Re:Simple solution (408 comments)

The better designed systems use a one-way hash of the answer. The support guy types the answer in and it's hashed and compared. Other systems use a mix of reversible and hashed answers. It can be done securely.

Until your security answer is something that can be spelled and/or punctuated a multitude of different ways and you're answering it verbally (i.e. to authenticate yourself over the phone). "Grey" and "Gray" are going to hash differently, and to say nothing about the multitude of ways of spelling various names. ("Is it O'mally or O'malley or o'Malley or...")

You can't count on the support type spelling it the exact way you do.

And you definitely can't count on the back end to be storing it with any sort of security at all, so my original point still stands.

more than 2 years ago

Secret Security Questions Are a Joke

Dewin Re:Simple solution (408 comments)

Yup. I had an embarassing phone conversation with my state's tax department because a year earlier I set the secret question to "What is the password?" and a year later I had naturally forgotten the answer.

This is a bad idea, since security questions are probably stored unencrypted or at least using a reversible cipher -- the people on the other end of support need to be able to compare your answer, and there needs to be some leeway especially with spoken answers and spelling variations.

Unless, of course, your answer is an entirely different password...

more than 2 years ago

What Is Your Favorite Ancient Olympic Game?

Dewin Re:enough already (207 comments)

NBC's coverage is a joke. They've set a new standard for awful that will be hard for anybody to top.

There are at least three other television networks that are now going "Challenge: accepted" now, I'm sure.

more than 2 years ago

Microsoft Lays Out Money-Making Options For Windows Store Developers

Dewin Re:Once the market matures (85 comments)

The lucrative in-app purchases in my metro app will involve throwing chairs.

It could be a parody of angry birds, where you throw chairs at Eric Schmidt, Larry Page and others.

The first expansion pack would be "Angry Ballmer: Developers Developers Developers".

more than 2 years ago

Interviews: Ask Physicist Giovanni Organtini About the Possible Higgs Boson Discovery

Dewin Re:Article title (170 comments)

No, what he meant was that Organtini is going to put a bunch of Higgs Bosons on a DVD and sell them to people who want them.

I don't think Higgs Bosons will catch the interest of the mass market.

more than 2 years ago

Linux Users Banned From Diablo III Servers

Dewin There's only 4 confirmed reports of banning... (518 comments)

A feral druid blog I follow had this to say about the banning:


  • There are tens of thousands of Linux/Wine Diablo 3 players.
  • Only 4 of them were banned.
  • Whatever they were banned for is completely unrelated to Linux or Wine
  • They were either cheaters or ran something else that turned up false positive by Warden.
  • If they were innocent, then they are pretty much screwed without possible help.

(Full source here)

Blizzard doesn't make a point of banning Linux users. The same source claims that there was an incident a few years ago where they inadvertently banned everyone using Cedega to play WoW, but when Cedega contacted them they determined the bans were false positives and not only lifted them but credited them with 20 days of game time.

more than 2 years ago

The Long Death of Fat Clients

Dewin Re:Yay. (277 comments)

I've read that Maptools (an open-source virtual tabletop for RPGs/etc.) currently is non-functional under Java 7, presumably due to an incompatible library.

more than 2 years ago

Next Generation Xbox and Playstation Consoles Will Have Optical Drives

Dewin Re:Offer a SKU that does not have an optical drive (206 comments)

However, the way some things are headed, why have any hardware at all? The only hardware you need is a screen to display the content/produce the sound which has been generated in the cloud...

And perhaps a controller or other input device.

It's been done before...

more than 2 years ago

Human Water Use Accounts For 42% of Recent Sea Level Rise

Dewin Re:Worse? (324 comments)

(Which obviously proves satellites cause sea level rise. )

Well, there is one particular satellite that has been well known to cause sea levels to rise quite significantly, so I think you might be on to something here...

more than 2 years ago



Handling an inherited house full of technology

Dewin Dewin writes  |  more than 3 years ago

Dewin (989206) writes "My father-in-law passed away earlier this year, leaving my wife as the executor of an estate including a house full of all sorts of hardware. There's a wide variety here — at least a half dozen computers and monitors (all LCDs, thankfully), mixing boards, a karaoke system, and a home networking setup with in-wall CAT5 wiring and no fewer than 3 wireless access points in addition to other networking hardware.

No one person is assigned specific items from the estate. It's a percentage share among the heirs, who are all (thankfully) on good terms with each other. Thus, we have some leeway in making decisions.

With that all in mind, we have the following questions:
  1. What's the best way to assess a value for all of the hardware in the house, and how do we determine what is worth keeping, what's worth selling, and what's just junk?
  2. Dozens of computers means dozens of harddisks, some of which probably hold interesting data either from an legal standpoint or a historical one. I'd like to find a way to aggregate all this data in one place quickly, ideally without having to look over each harddrive's contents or copying things like OS files.
  3. Is there any reason why I shouldn't just factory-reset all of the routers and reconfigure them to be in a known state (especially considering we lack the current admin passwords)? Considering I cannot get into the administrative interfaces for them currently, is there anything I should take note of first? There's nothing critical that we need running on the network that would break.
  4. I suspect the in-wall wiring is too old to support gigabit ethernet speeds, but I'd like to test (and possibly address that) if possible. Any tips?

We are on a fairly tight budget, so while purchases are an option we'd like to keep them fairly cheap and ideally something that will continue to be useful after the fact. Thanks!"


Dewin has no journal entries.

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