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Grinch Vulnerability Could Put a Hole In Your Linux Stocking

dissy Re:Quite possibly the stupidest vulnerability ever (95 comments)

"Oh no, Linux includes a "wheel" user group by default that grants superuser privileges to users in it! And someone could possibly add themselves to that group and gain root access!"

Or put another way:
"Oh no, Windows includes an "Administrators" group by default that grants superuser privileges to users in it! And an existing administrator could possibly add themselves to that group and gain administrator access!"

Agreed, stupidest vulnerability ever.

12 hours ago

Possible Dark Matter Signal Spotted

dissy Re:What, what? Something's wrong here. (65 comments)

It's a goddamned wonder that half the posters here don't have Nobel prizes in their back pockets.

Well I did just happen to come by one of those at a recent auction.

While my original thought was to have a bronze statue of myself constructed to display it I suppose I can keep it in a back pocket instead, though it might present an obstacle being in such close proximity to where I usually pull my slashdot posts from...

about a week ago

Once Again, Baltimore Police Arrest a Person For Recording Them

dissy Re:its not as if american cops have anything to fe (514 comments)

How about you keep your opinion to yourself until you stop being a hypocrite about it.

You are currently at this very second resisting arrest. If you feel so strongly that fact should mean you must die, then you have to put your money where your mouth is and actually die before your viewpoint will even be considered. Anything less means your actions show you don't at all believe what you said, so why should we?

So are your actions going to follow your words and you kill yourself?
Or are your actions going to be hypocritical and the exact opposite of your words, and you post a reply instead?

about a week ago

Apple, IBM Partnership Yields First Results: 10 Mobile Apps

dissy Re:Like hell I'd allow an iPhone on my network (53 comments)

I've been using Meraki MDM for a bit over a year now for managing my own devices, and have been quite pleased so far.

Sadly about a year back Cisco acquired them so there have been some changes in pricing and scope, but the free standard version is still available even if slightly hidden (most 'try now' links go to the enterprise signup page)
It now manages Cisco APs, Cisco switches, MDM, and a bit more random stuff.

Their main page is:

MDM specific info is at:

Standard version signup is at:

Note that they now offer two versions, standard and enterprise. Feature wise they are pretty identical except for technical support.
Standard is free for up to 50 devices, then device 51 and after will run you $1/device/month.
I've no idea the pricing details on enterprise, other than the 30 day trial involves them sending you an access point that works with it. I assume even device #1 has a monthly cost.

If you run Spiceworks, their latest major-version provides basic access to MDM for free through IBMs MaaS360.
They have a free version that adamantly doesn't have near enough features, and a paid version that is $3/device/month.
The paid version has all the features of IBMs branded version, but is a little cheaper per device.


If you want free and DIY, check out the "iPhone Configuration Utility" (mac/win versions available from apple) that let you create your own policy files - but you need to get them onto each iPhone "manually".
By manual this can be as easy as an email attachment or wifi-portal webpage download or something.
For devices you purchase and allocate to staff this is usually fine, but BYOD can be a problem without incentives for the user to install the profile themselves.

I used this method at work since I only had two profiles available then.
To get on the wifi network you needed to install our wifi profile, which grants access to the network and then enforces the network policy.
They didn't HAVE to install this policy, but then no wifi access at all.

I have a second profile to setup Cisco VPN client settings for users with VPN access, but my profile is more akin to a .PCF config (shared secret and IP stuff users don't need to worry about) and nothing else, so it just saves some typing for them. Not much arm twisting needed here.

(Download links at the bottom of this wiki, or just use Google)

Sadly all other MDM platforms I evaluated over a year ago either no longer exist or in the 'rather expensive' category.

The list I used at the time for the higher end providers was

I found 2-3 good gems in that list at the time (Meraki and MaaS360/Spiceworks being the best priced then)
Might still be worth a look for you.

about a week ago

Apple, IBM Partnership Yields First Results: 10 Mobile Apps

dissy Re:Like hell I'd allow an iPhone on my network (53 comments)

Like hell I'd allow an iPhone on my network

Strange, seeing as iPhone is one of the most manageable devices out there, second only to Blackberry and not by a very wide margin even then.

Not only can you push a wifi policy automatically for any BYOD iPhones that join your wifi to control network related policies, but managed (MDM) iPhones give you as much control over them as windows group policy does over windows desktops.

In fact the only one feature iPhone doesn't measure up on compared to Blackberry is app pushing over cellular. Since the discussion seems to be more about "letting them on the network" assuming wifi access isn't unreasonable, and removes that one limitation completely.

Has any progress what so ever been made with enterprise managing of android without any 3rd party solutions? As of the last android OS there was basically nothing to speak of, so I can't see them catching up these last 8ish years in just a few months.

Letting android on the network is about as secure as letting non-domain home windows systems on, so it is quite amusing you feel this is a better option!

about a week ago

French Publishers Prepare Lawsuit Against Adblock Plus

dissy Re:They can go bite a donkey (687 comments)

That's an absurd argument.

It takes an absurd argument to counter an equally absurd argument.

One absurd argument is that configuring a web server to instruct a browser to download a bunch of image files (as linked in the HTML) is a crime if a human being did not grant you that permission directly, since permission via configuration settings clearly doesn't matter.

This argument has been used (successfully) in court before, and in the US is a crime.

So an equally absurd argument is that me making my web browser connect to their server and being fed data, despite my browsers configuration to go ahead and do that, what matters is nothing but my wishes. If I wish for that data to not be downloaded, then at that point the data was forced upon me, and should be equally criminal.

You don't get it both ways.

about two weeks ago

Ralph H. Baer, a Father of Video Gaming, Dies At 92

dissy Re:How did it work without a CPU? (47 comments)

OK, so I don't know much about logic gates and stuff but I still can't understand how can you create a video game console without a CPU.

A CPU is nothing but a ton of logic gates wired mostly to each other inside of a tiny package, and logic gates are made from multiple transistors.

Here is a page showing how each type of logic gate is made from transistors:

Within a logic gate chip, all gates have their ground and power lines wired together and out to two pins on the chip, while the inputs/outputs typically also end up at pins on the chip, with everything else being internal to the IC.

Scaling up a level you can wire together multiple gates similarly.
A CPU is generally nothing but thousands to billions of these transistors wired together into gates that are wired together into "logical blocks" (think basic lego parts put together to form shapes, which you make a lot of, and then build your thing with the shapes)
This is why even today CPUs generally have a "transistor count", the number of the most basic elements on the chip making those gates that make up logical blocks that end up actually doing things.

The first CPUs in fact were boards (and boards and boards) of nothing but transistors wired together this way, before we could put them on a tiny silicon package in a small enough form to be called a microchip.

The first chips (at least that I am aware of) that packaged standard gates together in an IC is the 7400 line of chips. A 7402 chip for example contains four separate NOR gates for example.

Here is a Z80 CPU built using nothing but these 7400 gate chips:

The Z80 was used in home computers like the TRS-80, the ZX Spectrum, the Osborne, and I think even some of the old Commodore line. It was also in the original Nintendo Gameboy and Gameboy Color, and a ton more systems.
It's still used today although more for things we would think of as embedded devices. I have a SCSI card powered by one, for example.

Instead of a tiny IC measuring roughly an inch squared, when using 7400 chips the CPU is as large as you see in the picture on that page.

Just as it is rare to code in assembly these days, assemblers take higher level commands that consist of many assembly instructions and compiles those high level instructions down to blocks of assembly code (and then proceeds, hopefully, to optimize those blocks... but pretending optimization is disabled may give you a better idea visually)

Hope that explains some of it and didn't make the confusion worse ;}

about two weeks ago

The Schizophrenic Programmer Who Built an OS To Talk To God

dissy Re:Are You Sure (452 comments)

Oh, I get it - he made an OS to talk to DOG. I talk to mine all the time.

* RoboPuppy commencing two hour yipping session *

yip yip yip yip yip ... KICK

* RoboPuppy mistreatment alert! RoboPuppy mistreatment alert! *

about three weeks ago

Windows Kernel Version Bumped To 10.0

dissy Re:really? (171 comments)

For what software? Certainly not any I use, nor the various versions of MS-DOS from the company in question I used back in the 80s and 90s.

Back from the 60s one heavily used convention was: [major-version] dot [minor-version] dot [revision]

The dots are separators not unlike those in an IP address, not decimal places (of which more then one of doesn't make much sense)
Within the same major-version number the API would remain backwards compatible. New commands may be added in, but old existing commands should both still exist and still function identically.
Within the same minor-version (rev changes) the API would remain identical and data/file formats would keep the same structure.

This would allow the operator to assume a revision update can be installed at will and not worry much about breaking compatibility for anything not listed in the change log.
One could also assume any additional applications made to work with the upgrading app should still function without modification, at least if you follow the API docs and don't do anything too hacky.

For minor-version updates you assumed API using additions and apps should still work, but anything hacky by-passing the API due to limitations needs revisited and possibly edited.
An example is one program that creates input to the program in question via documented API calls should be fine, but your second program that is run after output being generated that goes to parse internal data files you "shouldn't" be touching likely will break until updated to parse the new data file structure.

For major-version updates, all bets are off. Pretend it is a brand new app and all interaction with it by other system components may need redesigned or be obsoleted.

Of course version numbers are only conventions. Those conventions can be changed to mean something more fitting for your particular software.
Or simplified to "Start at 1.0 and keep adding one" if you can predict not many updates being needed or for very simple one-off script type things.
Dates have turned out to be quite convenient version numbers with the time making a good developer compile/commit identifier that already keeps revisions in the correct order.

The only real rule is "pick a convention and stay consistent for the life of that software, else the wrath of dragons upon your head be"

about a month ago

Google Launches Service To Replace Web Ads With Subscriptions

dissy Re:Ads (319 comments)

So how does this not make you a worthless freeloader?

It makes me not a worthless freeloader in exactly the same way as you using an ad network doesn't make you a script kiddie hacker trying to infect millions of peoples computers with malware viruses and keyloggers deserving of imprisonment.

But if you insist on going there, allow me to remind you that my actions of not watching an ad are perfectly legal (and explicitly stated so in law), while your actions of infecting millions of computers is explicitly a federal criminal offense...

about a month ago

Halting Problem Proves That Lethal Robots Cannot Correctly Decide To Kill Humans

dissy Re:Impossible to build purely evil robots? (335 comments)

That implies we need to use evil compilers to program the Kill-O-Bots.

Man, I somehow always suspected Perl would be the death of us all, but I didn't quite have this in mind!

about a month ago

World's Youngest Microsoft Certificated Professional Is Five Years Old

dissy Re:Which says what? (276 comments)

You woke up and discovered you had installed Windows 2000?
Quite the scary illness you've got there. I'd rather find my horse's cut head.

I don't think they added the horse head option to the installer until Windows XP...

about a month ago

Pirate Bay Co-Founder Peter Sunde Is a Free Man Again

dissy Re:Same thing in the US (356 comments)

As someone who has had meat digesting microbes in my intestines die, I can say that the pains of moving undigested matter through your system are quite different from salmonella or other types of food poisoning.

Perhaps if you swallow a bunch of metal coins it would hurt similarly to those eating meats, but one would hope that eating coins wouldn't be a common occurrence :P

Not to mention there is no projectile diarrhea or urge to vomit, and the pains are only over the intestines instead of both stomach and then later the intestines.

Eating meat also doesn't result in a fever, although I'm not sure if that happens to others after food poisoning or it's just me.

about a month ago

Pirate Bay Co-Founder Peter Sunde Is a Free Man Again

dissy Re: Concern for high values? (356 comments)

1) He's not a victim. He's a convicted criminal.

You are a criminal too, even if you have managed not to get caught yet.
Thank you for permission to beat and kill you since you wouldn't be my victim.

2) It's not abuse, any more than making your kid eat his broccoli is abuse. Not liking specific food you could eat just fine something isn't grounds for special treatment.

In this one case maybe, but if they really do refuse to serve meals one medically needs to obtain nutrition, then this same policy - while "only" a moral issue to Sunde - is a sentence to slow death by starvation to those lacking the microbes to digest meat at all.

3) If you intentionally starve yourself the only person you're hurting is you.

And when the prison is intentionally starving you by action similar to serving you nothing but water to eat, then the only person hurting others is the prison itself.

about a month ago

Terrorists Used False DMCA Claims To Get Personal Data of Anti-Islamic Youtuber

dissy Re:Trying to wrap my head around this (389 comments)

Instead of having an automated service they could do the work necessary to validate copyright claims.

You could always go volenteer 40 hours a week for free for them, and bring along 10000 of your friends willing to work for free too.

No? I guess it's only OK for you to want paid but not OK for anyone else to want the same?

about a month and a half ago

MPAA Bans Google Glass In Theaters

dissy Re:Not a Fan of Google Glass, But... (357 comments)

Copyright infringement is not theft.

But when I go to the theater I only steal movie reels to take home.

Every time I download a movie, I feel extra horrible inside knowing the MPAA still has their original copy and thus are not harmed any, so had to change tactics :P

about a month and a half ago

Power and Free Broadband To the People

dissy Re:There is no free anything (262 comments)

Time and again, history has shown a healthy middle class is the best road to alleviate poverty on a grand scale.

I thought history has shown that killing all the poor people is the best road to alleviate poverty on a grand scale :P

about a month and a half ago

Pope Francis Declares Evolution and Big Bang Theory Are Right

dissy Re:Only YEC denies it (669 comments)

There is a saying I picked up somewhere that feels especially apt
"There are three things you never discuss with coworkers: Politics, Religion, and The Great Pumpkin"

I'm glad we aren't all anonymous psychopaths only out looking for peoples buttons to push needlessly.

about a month and a half ago

OEM Windows 7 License Sales End This Friday

dissy Re:Stop developing 64bit (242 comments)

32 bit cannot utilize more than 4GB ram

This is incorrect, x86 can address up to 64GB of memory with PAE

But I have 65GB of memory, you insensitive clod!

about 1 month ago



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