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One Developer's Experience With Real Life Bitrot Under HFS+

cpct0 Re: So far what I lost... (396 comments)

Yeah, with scratches it's a valid assumption. However, in my case it was cheap CDs with inks that degraded, so the reflectivity of the data itself was degraded, the drive was ultimately unable to retrieve data on most sectors, or it was able after dozen of reads over the same block of data, until the data got its green flag from the recovery algorithm embedded in Data-CD format specs.

A scratch is localized. CD dye degradation is global. But thanks for the idea.

about a month and a half ago

One Developer's Experience With Real Life Bitrot Under HFS+

cpct0 So far what I lost... (396 comments)

Bitrot is not usually the issue for most files. Sometimes, but it's rare. What I lost is a mayhem repository of hardware and software and human failure. Thanks for backup, life :)

On Bitrot:

- MP3s and M4As I had that suddenly started to stutter and jump around. You play the music and it starts to skip. Luckily I have backups (read on for why I have multiple backups of everything :) ) so when I find them, I just revert to the backup.
- Images having bad sectors like everyone else. Once or twice here or there.

- A few CDs due to CD degradation. That includes one that I really wish I'd still have, as it was a backup of something I lost. However, the CD takes hours to read, and then eventually either balks up or not for the directory. I won't tell you about actually trying to copy the files, especially with normal timeouts in modern OSes or the hardware pieces or whatnot.

Not Bitrot:

- Two RAID Mirror hard drives, as they were both the same company, and purchased at the same time (same batch), in the same condition, they both balked at approximately the same time, not leaving me time to transfer data back.

- An internal hard drive, as I was making backups to CDs (at that time). For some kind of reason I still cannot explain, the software thought my hard drive was both the source and the destination !!!! Computer froze completely after a minute or two, then I tried rebooting to no avail, and my partition block was now containing a 700mb CD image, quarter full with my stuff. I still don't know how that's possible, but hey, it did. Since I was actualy making my first CD at the time and it was my first backup in a year, I lost countless good files, many I gave up upon (especially my 90's favorite music video sources ripped from the original betacam tapes in 4:2:2 by myself).

- A full bulk of HDs on Mac when I tried putting the journal to another internal SSD drive. I have dozens of HDDs, and I thought it'd go faster to use that nifty "journal on another drive" option. It did work well, although it was hell to initialize, as I had to create a partition for each HDD, then convert them to journaled partitions. Worked awesomely, very quick, very efficient. One day after weeks of usage, I had to hard close the computer and its HDD. When they remounted, they all remounted in the wrong order, somehow using the bad partition order. So imagine you have perfectly healthy HDDs but thinking they have to use another HDDs journal. Mayhem! Most drives thought they were other ones, so my music HDD became my photos HDD RAID, my system HDD thought it was the backup HDD, but just what was in the journal. It took me weeks sporting DiskWarrrior and Data Rescue in order to get 99% of my files back (I'm looking at you, DiskWarrior as a 32 bit app not supporting my 9TB photo drive) with a combinaison of the original drive files and the backup drive files. Took months to rebuild the Aperture database from that.

- All my pictures from when I met my wife to our first travels. I had them in a computer, I made a copy for sure. But I cannot find any of that anywhere. Nowhere to be found, no matter where I look. Since that time, many computers happened, so I don't know where it could've been sent. But I'm really sad to have lost these

- Did a paid photoshoot for an unique event. Took 4 32GB cards worth of priceless pictures. Once done with a card, I was sifting through the pictures with my camera and noticed it had issues reading the card. I removed it immediately. When at home, I put the card in my computer, it had all the troubles in the world reading it (but was able to do so), I was (barely) able to import its contents to Aperture (4-5 pictures didn't make the cut, a few dozens had glitches). It would then (dramatically, as it somehow have its last breath after relinquishing its precious data) not read or mount anywhere, not even being recognized as a card by the readers. Childs, use new cards regularly for your gigs :)

- A RAID array breaking, and the company nowhere to be found after all these years, and the discs not being able to be read elsewhere.

- Countless HDDs breaking in various ways (including a cat throwing a vase full of water onto an open laptop ... yeah ... love my cats sometimes), all without consequences as I have daily backups of everything I own, and monthly offsites.

about a month and a half ago

Ask Slashdot: Is iOS 7 Slow?

cpct0 Peachy once iCloud is off (488 comments)

Update went well on my iPhone 4 (not S). Still am getting used to some elements. For example, the "ok" to unlock is kind of really unclear, and as such, I have doubts on putting nondescript text as buttons instead of having them shown with a rounded rect button frame.

I had MAJOR slowdowns everytime I was writing some line of text. I mean major MAJOR, like the UI freezing for 10 seconds, then putting all the text I was blindly writing, and then freezing for yet another 10 seconds. Then, Mr. Interwebz found the solution, which is to disable iCloud synchro for documents & settings ... and from that point on, no more battery hug, no more slowdowns, and everything is quite responsive.

So far, like it!

about 10 months ago

Why One Woman Says Sending Your Kid To Private School Is Evil

cpct0 Yes, but not for everyone (1255 comments)

It's the parent's prerogative to send their children wherever they see fit. It's also the parent's prerogative to prepare their children the best they can for "real life". Some parents are well equipped to actually fully participate in their children's environment, try to make it better, implicate themselves, do activities, vote, give time, money, opportunities and trying to make the school a genuine good place for their children to be.

Not everyone is able to do that. My parents were able to do that. They were able to actually send me to alternative (and public) school, to participate fully in the school's life, always be there for me. It was a hard choice for them, not only needing to drive me an hour every day, then go to work, but also participate many nights and even some days to school life. Even for them, they eventually gave up one such school, and went to another one because it was plainly too demanding. So I wouldn't expect everyone to give the dedication to bring their prized school up to par to their expectations. Some parents are just able to pay up, are not able to speak or talk adequately, or they don't have time to dedicate themselves to such hard work, and we have to respect that. Alas, today in this world where parents are paying premium and expecting their young bastard children (exaggeration intended here) to do well, and screaming to the teacher (instead of screaming at your own children) whenever they don't have straight As is the norm, I expect the school system to remain crooked.

In the end, people are voting with their attendance. If your school system is bad enough to fear for lives just by attending, I'd expect people to try to move away from these places. There's preparing for real life and there's plain madness... and I'm truly sorry for the dedicated teachers giving their lives and soul for these schools; my mom is such a teacher (nearing her last working years now), giving her life to people with learning disabilities (or missed opportunities); her and many fellow teachers are giving what they can, but sometimes, it's not enough to convince parents.

On my side, I actually moved to a place where active outdoor life is adequate, near good quality schools (not the best - but in the >75%), and I plan my children to have a good chance in life, using neighbourhood friends, public school system, dedication, caring and be with my (future) children for anything they might need. That's where I decided to give my money, that's where my vote is going, even if I have to take the train and public transportation 3hr every single work day.

about a year ago

How the Smartphone Killed the Three-day Weekend

cpct0 Re:Depends on your priority and speed (232 comments)

True, but right now it works, so it's very very very far in my priority list. Mostly something I would do on the whim of the moment if I wanted. Now, I don't care. as having a buzz every time I get an e-mail is not exactly a highlight of what I want to get :)

about a year ago

How the Smartphone Killed the Three-day Weekend

cpct0 Re:Depends on your priority and speed (232 comments)

hahahaha, yes, but not for everything. Because the Fruity Device I got doesn't handle spam correctly, it means it gets _all_ the e-mails from my provider. So I wait for them to be filtered out by my computer, and then, I read them. No Push for e-mails.

Nor for the Social company, not particularly granular for the different wall posts, so I prefer to actually check them myself.

In other words, I mostly use Push notifications to get informed of the state of my servers at home, some messaging, and that's mostly it.

about a year ago

How the Smartphone Killed the Three-day Weekend

cpct0 Depends on your priority and speed (232 comments)

I nearly never checked my work e-mails at home, even if I've been a lead in most companies. I started a successful company with other people. Even then, my evenings were my evenings, and my week-ends were my week-ends, not my company's. Some exceptions of course, but they remained exceptions.

I give my all when I am at work, and disconnect myself from work at home. Like every good geek, I check my personal e-mails, and I check my personal phone messages approximately 594,000,000 times per microsecond (slightly exaggerating, but let's just say that number would be higher if I didn't have to drive sometimes ;) ), and everyone @ work knows they can call me or phone me if they are stuck. However, I will not jeopardize my mental sanity or my family's sanity for work. Starting a company is enough hard work to feel the strain, starting early AM and ending late PM (if ever), I won't add up a chain up on my nose when I'm away.

Which doesn't mean it doesn't work for you, I mean, I have people whose job it is to be 24/7 (some IT and some managers). Then you have to adapt your rhythm so you are relaxed most of the time, so your brain can work during long marathons, instead of 8 hours sprints. Even then, they all know the meaning of disconnecting, and will resort going to a place where their phone doesn't work if needed, but they will relax.

And if you feel like you work too hard, then don't :) There are other jobs elsewhere that doesn't require constant connection. Just change. It's your life. You do what you want.

about a year ago

Deloitte: Use a Longer Password In 2013. Seriously.

cpct0 I just plain gave up (538 comments)

At first, I used complex alphanumeric passwords.
Then some system asked me for some Case. So I added up some actual Easily Guessable Case.
Then some system asked me for some Sp#ci@l characters. So I added them (@g@!n e@sy to f!nd).
Then some system decided it didn't like Sp#ci@l characters. So I only added them when needed only
Then I tried migrating to Pass Phrases. However, the Sp#ci@l still needs to be there sometimes, and sometimes they don't like that, and sometimes, spaces aren't supported, and sometimes, there's a limit of 15 characters.
Then, I found one site that actually asked me for PRECISELY 8 characters, with mixed, number and special. The frag!
And I have two places where I need to switch passwords every now and then (3 months and 6 months)

So I freaking gave up. At home, my crap is seriously secure. It's long pass sentences with some mistakes in them, it's easy to remember them, and hard to figure them out. Whenever I can, I use these pass sentences, always different, because my brain actually remembers these passwords, and they are kind of related to the system in question, for example, on a Fruity system, I might write "I SIRIously love cider" ;)

Everywhere else, the "dick" sites and systems, I have 3-4 passwords, precisely 8 characters in length, with option@1 specials and one ever incrementing character somewhere... Because I need to remember these.

Oh and then, for crappy sites I couldn't care less about, I'm in the top 50 easiest passwords to find. Find them, I couldn't care less. :)

about a year and a half ago

Connecticut Group Wants Your Violent Videogames — To Destroy Them

cpct0 Re:Don't get it (449 comments)

The video game industry was waiting for that one, don't worry. :) Oh there's a shooting. When will people actually link that to violent video games ... Oh here it is.

I like what Penny Arcade did there :

I will refrain from giving my opinion on shootings, guns, media and other elements, tend to get passionate. ;)

about a year and a half ago

Nintendo Wii U Teardown Reveals Simple Design

cpct0 Re:PS3 (276 comments)

Assembly. :)

I would guess compilers are interested in creating very good optimizers and use special features when this is mainstream, not a niche market.

about a year and a half ago

Nintendo Wii U Teardown Reveals Simple Design

cpct0 Re:PS3 (276 comments)

(Note: this is speculation, I never asked Nintendo about these, nor did I had any access to whatever internal documentation on RAM for the Wii - much less for WiiU)

Like I said, the 64M GDDR RAM of Wii is very quick, but optimized to be read and written in big chunks. It's not meant for per-byte random access.

I don't have the specifics at hand, but RAM is read in big chunks (32 bytes, 256 bytes, I really don't remember), and kept in cache from there. As long as you stay in that cache, it's all right.

Also, that RAM is used for GPU, DMA, and everything else external to the CPU. So its bandwidth is split between everything in the console. That means crappy bandwidth, split at controller side. That's GDDR RAM, tied down to the graphical chip, and that one has priority. That's why they added up so many features to transfer data back and forth from RAM. That way, you can do bulk transfers in background while the CPU is happily churning something else. Would it be that fast, there wouldn't be such tools.

On a side note, I'd take OP AC with a grain of salt. However, HDDs do transfer quickly when accessing data sequentially. So I don't say it's impossible to have the same CPU-side bandwidth. You are totally right about latency, that said; HDDs are very slow to seek.

Yet again, reminder this is for Wii, I have no idea how the WiiU works.

about a year and a half ago

Nintendo Wii U Teardown Reveals Simple Design

cpct0 Re:PS3 (276 comments)

I used to code for Wii. Haven't coded for WiiU. So I cannot tell, only extrapolating from what you are saying here.

However, what you are giving as info is mostly the same than Wii used to have. I expected they kept full compatibility between the WiiU and the Wii, so they could emulate the system. That probably explains the chips.

Your PS (Paired Single) experience is mostly what I would expect from a newbie assembly programmer. Sorry. Yes, it's very hard to code PSes but once you get the hang of it, it's very efficient.

As far as your memory experience, I would expect the WiiU to use the equivalent from the Wii, meaning they have a very fast internal memory, and a cacheless external memory. It's powerful if you understand how to work its magic, and you need to know how to use caches or other accumulators to transfer data.

Not saying it isn't a pain. It is. Especially if you want to code as a general purpose guy (big company), with compatibility on multiple platforms. Most multiplatform have one kind of memory, so it expects fast and efficient RAM for its whole game. However, if you code solely for the WiiU, and have a background in Wii or in GameCube, you'll feel right at home I'm sure. Read your comments, and it all rang bells.

It would make sense if the WiiU uses the same system than the Wii. Wii uses 2 kind of RAM, first one is very quick for random access, but you have very little of it. Second one is very quick for sequential write access, but horribly slow for random read access. Depending on tests, you can get magnitude of slowness in that kind of RAM on Wii. Now, I don't have experience in WiiU (and even if I did, I would keep this confidential, to be honest), but I do feel in a familiar place. :)

-full disclosure- Work for EA, all info here was double-checked for availability in the likes of Wikipedia and Google. Opinions are mine.

about a year and a half ago

Apple: an 'App Store' Is Not a Store For Apps

cpct0 Imagination? (279 comments)

Funny how on Mac it always was Applications, on Win it was always Programs, on Lin it was always Software, and then you got all the different variations for all the platforms everywhere. Some use Ware, some use Soft(pedia for example).

Then Apple starts using Apps, coins the App Store to go there, gets the most talked about platform, and somehow it now has become "common sense" to use Apps for everything, and the only place to get an App is on the App Store.

Imagination, people ... come on! It's a freaking term, coin your own! Soft Store, Get-A-Ware, don't know what. And although I understand Apple in their stance, I find it funny and ridiculous. It reminds me of Microsoft Bookshelf.

more than 3 years ago

Google Engineers Deny Hack Exploited Chrome

cpct0 Re:I find it odd (244 comments)

You see, that's exactly the kind of things people should never have to hear about a product. If I get a product, whether at $0 or $10,000, it should always be responsible for its own integrated tools.

Let say I buy an integrated specialized medical database using Oracle as backend. First, I shouldn't really have to care it uses Oracle. Is the product working or not? Yes or no. The reason why a specific request would fail "because its an Oracle bug" is moot, the vendor decided to use Oracle, it should vouch by it.

Let say again I buy M$ Outlook. It uses M$ Jet as its backend. Should I really care? Absolutely not! Actually, you learn about that part when you (used to) go over 2GB and the system would balk with a corrupted archive. To have the vendor tell me it's a Jet bug shouldn't be taken seriously, they chose to use it, they live with the limitations, and it now becomes an Outlook bug.

Same for Chrome. I decide to install Chrome on my computer. It uses WebKit. It comes bundled with multiple DLLs and tools, D3DX, Gears, AVFormat and so on. Some are even signed by Google themselves, some files even contain Flash provisions inside them. They should vouch for what they have, and actually consider their bundled tools as part of their software, no matter what.

(extrapolation) I wonder how it would go with my mom, trying to make her understand that she uses a software she installed, but the fact her computer became infected with malware is because of some extraneous tool she unwittingly installed at the same time she installed Chrome, is part of the default package, and is bugged down. :) She'll remove Chrome and never go back to it because it's ITS fault. :)

more than 3 years ago

Google Engineers Deny Hack Exploited Chrome

cpct0 I find it odd (244 comments)

A company takes care to actually go through code, assembly, source, any means really, figure out a hack that's specific to Chrome ... and somehow, they are the ones misunderstanding the code. Somehow that answer doesn't satisfy me :)

Also, the answer would be equivalent to having my code use Sqlite as a dll, I bundle it in my package, I install it, it's mine ... but somehow when someone hacks my application through a (very theoretical - example only! move on trolls ;) ) sqlite bug, I would have the exit door saying "oh yes, you can hack my app, it's defenseless, but it's not my fault, it's sqlite here! *points*"

Please ... Chrome ... You bundle it, you vouch by it, you got hacked, you recognized, don't start making excuses please. It's no big deal, it's only a bug, like there are countless in ALL applications throughout the world.

more than 3 years ago

Playstation To Restore Services This Week

cpct0 Re:Wakeup call US? (174 comments)

Mmm, well, there is the PCI standard that's supposed to protect you against such things, disallowing ANY kind of credit card number keeping. I guess Sony weren't PCI compliant, and I guess this is why they are being checked by all these groups, because such thing should've never happened, at least for the CC#. I know, I had to go through that test last year, and it's quite secure.

For the account info, that's something else, they screwed up and that's it. Let me guess, their passwords were sent through a SHA-1 or some other crappy password verifier. :)

more than 3 years ago

A "Throne" Fit For a Tech King

cpct0 Re:Not up to the standards of Japan (111 comments)

It actually is up that standard ... and Toto, the famed washlet makers are actually producing these in USA too ... you simply need to look them up.

I find it funny to see this coming over everywhere on the Intarwebz. At least Kohler knows their way up the social media / blogosphere / viral marketing.

more than 3 years ago

Microsoft TouchStudio Uses Phone To Program Phone

cpct0 Re:Late Again? (162 comments)

For me, it strangely reminds me of Hypercard ... and thus of current Mac OS X Automator. If you want even easier, I'd even go to Quartz Composer. Yet again things pioneered by Apple. I wouldn't create a full 3D game using that scripting system, it's totally different and not meant for the same thing.

People simply don't understand high-level versus low-level; both has merits.

more than 3 years ago

The Decline and Fall of System Administration

cpct0 Here we go again (500 comments)

Is this the old geezer versus the new wet diapers yet again? (trying to be as evil on both sides ;) )

There are new technologies and we should embrace them. I am not a proponent of VMs, I don't like them in general, but I do see its uses and it's very effective. Like in C++, you got STL, with very similar and nearly interchangeable std::vector, std::list, std::deque and so on (and not talking about boost or 3rd parties here). You need to know when to apply them or else you'll get problems. Well, in the '10s, you have the same ridicule amount of technologies available to sysadmins, and you need to know when to apply it. That's the new Sysadmin job, not only know that you can code one in bash with grep, awk, echo, while read, pipes and rsync, but actually know there is a package all neatly made for you, available at your fingertips with a simple apt-get (or yum).

I keep my computer tidied-up, I love to know what runs where. Even then, I do a "spring cleaning" once every year, reinstalling everything. And incredibly, my computer runs faster and more efficiently. Why? new /etc defaults, new parameters, new software, old clinging software, things that are nearly impossible to update. Same for the files. Seriously, in today's computers, we get hundred of thousands of files, most of which have some arcane use we couldn't care less, but are necessary for some kind of weird reason. I'm a sysadmin, and I don't pretend to want to know all these files.

I read the article, and yes, there are things that are changing, and seriously, I do respect the One person who can understand the Sendmail configuration files... oh I'd even be impressed with the M4. :) And when there is a problem, I want to know why, because I love to learn. But then ... there are prerogatives, time constraints, servers need to be up, people need to work, and we have all these magnificient tools that will enable every computer to be segregated in their private little VM world (to return to that main article). So should be simply shrug, laugh and go back to The Ancient Ways? You can keep you "vi" editor, leave me my "vim", please. :)

more than 3 years ago

Why You Shouldn't Reboot Unix Servers

cpct0 Re:Not better than the others (705 comments)

It scales horribly
It takes more work
It takes more time down the end ... but then, I don't have a %(#)load of users sending me e-mails, calling me (off-site), coming to see me in real life, and I don't have to send a message to all the clients and users saying it's known, and I don't have the company managers telling me they're in a crunch or whatnot.

95% of users coming to my desk in these mere minutes a server is down:
- hi
- hi. Yes?
- how are you?
- not too bad, you?
- going well. I got a question for you?
- yes?
- Are you working on whatever server?
- yeah, it's down. Restarting it now, there might be further downtime later on if I see a solution, and it might require further downtime. Hopefully not.
- oh ... ok, thanks
- no sweat.

So I'm sorry, I'm really inexperienced I guess, I just work with active servers with users happily churning in them, and are to a point mission critical, for them at least. And FWIW, I'm merely a non-jerk and non-God-complex sysadmin that tries to answer to users with proper English and not shoving their little problems down their %/%/.

And yes, SVN might sometimes cause problems, especially when linked to these buzzwords: SASL, LDAP, NFS, VM and 1TB worth of data.

more than 3 years ago


cpct0 hasn't submitted any stories.




cpct0 cpct0 writes  |  more than 9 years ago

I am happy!

Finally got my first Flamebait, as well as my first Redundant ^_^

Flamebait because I give an opinion, and probable cause to effect ...
And Redundant because I was the second comment saying the same thing in a flat view, of course, in sub-level stuff.

Aaah, political hegemony of Slashdot!

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