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Ask Slashdot: Best Anti-Virus Software In 2015? Free Or Paid?

Fencepost Prevention Options (467 comments)

A couple of other things for prevention could include CryptoPrevent and HitmanPro.Alert.

CryptoPrevent is primarily an automated way to set a variety of documented settings to restrict execution from a variety of locations, though you may need to temporarily disable it for installing or updating some software. I also haven't investigated this, but it occurred to me this evening that those policy changes might have caused problems I recently had with some Windows security updates that ended up with me saying "screw it" and reinstalling Windows.

HitmanPro.Alert monitors filesystem behavior to attempt to detect and block the assorted CryptoLocker-style infections, though there are some that it still doesn't detect (or at least can't differentiate enough from regular activity).

3 days ago
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Illinois Students Suspected of Cyberbullying Must Provide Social Media Passwords

Fencepost "Color of Law" and "Color of Authority" (322 comments)

This could come back to bite teachers or administrators in the ass if they're sued for their actions. They'll undoubtedly get away with it with a lot of kids, but there are going to be a few that will tell them to piss off, and then things will get ugly and expensive, possibly for both school districts and the administrators personally if it's determined that A) they didn't actually have a legal right to the information and B) it was provided to them under duress (see "Color of Law" and "Color of Authority").

about a week ago
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Windows Server 2003 Reaches End of Life In July

Fencepost OS is cheap. Migration is expensive (156 comments)

I work with a few places that still have 1-2 2003 servers around, and for some of them we'll probably be locking them off from any external access and doing a few other things to restrict them while still keeping them around (possibly mostly powered down except by request). That's because they're legacy systems still running old software that someone occasionally needs to refer back to - primarily old diagnostic imaging or practice management/EMR systems which are long out of support.

I have a few places that are 1-3 doctors, 3-6 staff, and they have an old system that they need to go back and refer to every week or two for things that didn't get migrated when they changed EMRs. Migrating everything out of that old system into something like PDFs for attachment to the current system would be cost-prohibitive; paying for migration ("Sure, we'll be happy to upgrade you to our new version, it'll be just like you're switching back to us, shouldn't be more than $30k or so") is the same. We long ago VM'd almost all of these systems along with upgrading/replacing where feasible, so there's not really an added hardware maintenance cost for keeping the VMs around.

And before people say "you should have migrated everything," the last migration we did, the new vendor wanted and would accept a very specific set of fields - all on a single (large) Excel sheet. Everything migrated was practice management data - demographics, insurance, etc. NOTHING clinical was migrated (possibly for liability reasons - what happens if your import of the peanut allergy info fails because of something stupid). For clinical data, the staff at the practice still goes into the old system, generates a set of reports into PDFs, then attaches those PDFs to the new electronic chart as if the customer was coming from another practice. Migrating all the patients makes no sense, this is a specialist practice where a significant percentage of patients are seen for a year or less, then are not seen again for years if ever.

about a week ago
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Cuba's Pending Tech Revolution

Fencepost Re: Did Congress pass a law? (122 comments)

Actually, it's more that Congress stopped it by barring spending any money on transfers. So Obama could likely close Gitmo, but only by actually just closing it - take the fences down, leave the prisoners to their own devices.

I'm pretty sure that's a level of "F*ck you" to Congress that he didn't want to get into, but maybe now.... After all, what are they going to do, stop cooperating with him? Attempt to roll back what's arguably his biggest domestic achievement?

about two weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: Linux Distro For Hybrid Laptop?

Fencepost Keep Windows, VM Linux (210 comments)

This may turn out to be a situation where your best way to run Linux reliably is going to be full screen under VMware. No driver problems, etc.

about three weeks ago
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Tesla Roadster Update Extends Range

Fencepost Pleased to see them backporting (128 comments)

I'm pleased to see them backporting new tech to the older vehicles, and by doing this they also get replacement batteries into vehicles sold as much as 6 years ago (first introduced in 2008), though presumably they've had replacement battery packs available all along.

I'm sure they're also going to be making at least some profit on these upgrade kits, and by not abandoning the older vehicles they probably do a lot to cement loyalty from those same customers who were willing & able to drop more than $100k when they first came out.

about a month ago
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BT, Sky, and Virgin Enforce UK Porn Blocks By Hijacking Browsers

Fencepost This is how they express an opinion (294 comments)

"As Prime Minister David Cameron announced, we are required to ask ALL of our customers by the end of 2014 whether they wish to opt in or out of filtering of materials deemed offensive by the government's approved third-party monitors. As we have not yet received a response from you to our previous inquiries about this, we are now required to take additional steps to ensure that you have seen and responded to this question."

Or at least that's how I'd phrase it.

about a month ago
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Minecraft Creator Notch's $70 Million Mansion Recreated In Minecraft

Fencepost Better, set up trusts (170 comments)

If I won a 9-figure lottery (the only kind I could win, I generally throw a dollar or two in if I notice it's gone over 200 million), the first thing to do after dealing with taxes, etc. is to set up at least one pretty iron-clad trust designed to pay me a nice solid upper-middle-class "salary" every year, with a lot of restrictions on how I could break any principal out of it. I suspect this would also impact taxes if done properly.

Once you have your perpetual senior developer-level salary set up, **then** you figure out what you want to do with the rest, be it toys, long-term investments, completing your dream to visit every strip club in the country (note: if going the "hookers and blow" route, make sure that trust is *really* airtight).

about a month ago
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Minecraft Creator Notch's $70 Million Mansion Recreated In Minecraft

Fencepost Not a waste (170 comments)

Whether it's a waste depends on what he wants to do with it. What if he wants to do a lot of code jams? Hmmmm, "Where should we get a half-dozen programmers together for a weekend?" "How about Notch's place?"

about a month ago
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Ask Slashdot: Best Software To Revive PocketPCs With Windows Mobile 5-6?

Fencepost Shopping list appliance (110 comments)

Ignoring all the people advocating A) Linux or B) Trash 'em you can turn them into decent little shopping list gadgets for people if they have decent battery life still. Avoid anything that requires Internet or other connections at all - just turn off any wireless, etc. becasue you may not have the battery for it anyway and you certainly don't have the software/updates.

HandyShopper was a great program for Palm and Windows Mobile back in the day, is free and still available: http://chrisant.home.comcast.net/~chrisant/hs3/hs3.htm

It's most useful for people who shop at multiple stores, because one of the useful features is tracking pricing for the same item across stores and showing you when it's cheaper elsewhere.

about a month and a half ago
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Washington Dancers Sue To Prevent Identity Disclosure

Fencepost If only the licenses were easier to get.... (461 comments)

If they were easier to get I'd happily cough up the $75 to become an officially licensed exotic dancer, but the county referenced when I first saw this story a few days ago looked like it'd be a pain unless you were actually an employee of one of the businesses.

Of course, if I did this my wife might actually demand that I dance for her and that could just be ugly all around. I am not a man built for a stripper pole.

about 3 months ago
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US Midterm Elections Discussion

Fencepost Re:News For Nerds? (401 comments)

Plenty of people care, but the available actions aren't something they're willing to do. IIRC, when Obama tried to close it, the Republicans basically required that there could be NO money spent by the military on ANY activities related to moving the prisoners at Guantanamo into US prisons, or to shut down the base itself.

Obama might be able to do something along the lines of finding another country (or non-governmental organization/NGO?) and inviting them to join in the management of Gitmo, then simply not replace any troops whose tours of duty expired. However, that would not be a terribly quick process, it would undoubtedly be stopped by Republicans threatening to shut down all military spending again, and it would then leave whoever the third-party was effectively in charge of the base, at which point they could simply release all of the prisoners (including the Super-Terrorists too dangerous for US Supermax prisons) if they so desired.

And as a side effect it would completely guarantee (rather than 95% confidence) that absolutely *nothing* could be accomplished during the remainder of his presidency.

about 3 months ago
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US Midterm Elections Discussion

Fencepost Re:News For Nerds? (401 comments)

You and towermac have both been asserting that Obama has been talking about/said he would do an amnesty, and yet when asked neither of you has provided any kind of citation.

This marks you as unreliable trolls repeating unverified claims, unless of course you'd like to actually, oh, *provide* some citations.

about 3 months ago
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US Midterm Elections Discussion

Fencepost Re:News For Nerds? (401 comments)

By doing so he put the burden of keeping it open squarely on the Republicans. It's a battle I believe he could win, but the cost of doing so would be too high - the remaining option for closing it would be to simply abandon it, presumably with some third party not controlled by Congress available to handle the release of the prisoners since Congress mandated that they couldn't be transferred to prisons within the US. It would be a solution nobody would find acceptable.

about 3 months ago
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US Midterm Elections Discussion

Fencepost Re:News For Nerds? (401 comments)

Actually I have to give credit to Fox here, looks like that court case reference I made is as badly distorted from reality as the McDonald's coffee case mentions usually are. Mea culpa.

about 3 months ago
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US Midterm Elections Discussion

Fencepost Re:News For Nerds? (401 comments)

I will repeat my basic request from elsewhere: please provide me with a citation from a reputable source. Breitbart.com, rushlimbaugh.com and any organization that has argued in court that they aren't a "news" company but an infotainment company (e.g. Fox News) are not "reputable" without further citations.

about 3 months ago
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US Midterm Elections Discussion

Fencepost Re:News For Nerds? (401 comments)

You're quite right, he didn't say Fox, and I should have included breitbart.com and rushlimbaugh.com in my list. There seems to be little basis for the claim, just as there was little basis for it when it went around in 2010 and 2012.

I regard it as being like Obama's clear desire to implement incredibly strong gun control and take away all weapons and ammo, as evidenced by his deceptively avoiding anything related to gun control.

about 3 months ago
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US Midterm Elections Discussion

Fencepost Re: the filibuster (401 comments)

I'll note that the Dems changed the rules so you don't need the 60 votes to override for TWO things: A) Judicial nominations below the Supreme Court level and B) Executive nominations below the cabinet level and in no other situations.

There were no changes to the filibuster for legislation (though personally I'd have loved to see it change from 60 votes to stop debate over to 40 votes to continue debate), and Mitch McConnell has indicated in the past that he doesn't see changing that should he become Majority Leader this fall.

As for the filibuster, I'd love to see it change just on the basis of "If you say you want to continue debate, don't say that then leave town." I'm fine with continuing "debate" (not that they ever actually debate the items they're delaying/killing), but by god if you're going to do it you'd better care enough to actually stick around.

about 3 months ago
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US Midterm Elections Discussion

Fencepost Re:News For Nerds? (401 comments)

I forgot to mention why this doesn't even pass the sniff test - Using what authority?

(gratuitous insult removed) even if Obama wanted to "grant amnesty to all illegal immigrants in the US," he has no legal authority to do so. The administration does have the ability to change where enforcement is happening, which is why there's so much dispute over Obama's policies on deportations - the numbers are up, but the enforcement has in many cases shifted to border enforcement, recent immigrants and those convicted of (charged with?) crimes more than long-term residents.

about 3 months ago
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US Midterm Elections Discussion

Fencepost Re:News For Nerds? (401 comments)

So can you document this? Anything that starts with "Fox News tells me that Obama is thinking about...." is immediately suspect, because honestly A) who in the administration would be talking much with Fox and B) why would you believe anything that Fox talking heads tell you without independently verifying it?

I don't know why you're so upset anyway, Fox News told me that Mitch McConnell is thinking about cheating on his wife with that sexy young tortoise at the DC zoo, and Chris Christie is thinking about having a stromboli.

about 3 months ago

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