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Microsoft Releases Replacement Patch With Two Known Bugs

wbr1 Re:Other strange update issues.. (98 comments)

Yes there are. This shop mostly supports our business IT techs by setting up and rebuilding stuff that goes out to businesses. But the shop also picks up plenty of residential infections and failed hardware.

I can go to Chicago to install your GPU, however, it will cost about $900-$1500 in travel expenses.

4 hours ago

Microsoft Releases Replacement Patch With Two Known Bugs

wbr1 Re:Other strange update issues.. (98 comments)

I did not see this thread. It (like many) seems to have a lot of useless info, but that DNS issues is probably key. We use open DNS here, and I did not even think to change DNS. If it recurs I will certainly check that. You sir deserve a +1.

5 hours ago

Microsoft Releases Replacement Patch With Two Known Bugs

wbr1 Other strange update issues.. (98 comments)

Yesterday in my repair shop I started getting a 0x80246002 error when checking for updates. Only on Win 7, (8 and vista were unaffected). This first occurred on a customer box that had a malware infection. The KB for this error simply states:

This problem may occur if Windows Update or Microsoft Update determines there is a file hash mismatch when you try to search for available updates from the Windows Update Web site or from the Microsoft Update Web site.

I spent a couple hours down the rabbit hole, thinking malware had broken updates on this box. Not unusual, and normally fixable by one of several means. When all attempts failed, and then another box presented the same error, I checked, every single windows 7 box would not check for updates.

I found that it was not something strange in our router or firewall, and it even occurred on other building tenants computers using a separate internet connection. Everyone in the building is on Comcast. Even more interesting, if I connected a computer to another ISP (tethering on my phone in this instance), the update check would succeed. You could then reconnect to comcast and download and install the updates.

Further all of these computers were running Windows Update Agent 7.6.7600.320, which is a recent (KB less and not able to be skipped) update to Windows update, that you cannot roll back easily. However, by going to a restore point prior to this update, checking for updates magically worked again, until this Agent updated itself and it was broken again.

So somehow, for whatever reason, the way Windows Update on Win 7 with this version of the agent checks for updates was being blocked by Comcast (Business class). Try explaining that to a comcast support rep. Fortunately today it seems to be working again.

5 hours ago

Old Doesn't Have To Mean Ugly: Squeezing Better Graphics From Classic Consoles

wbr1 No device necessary (163 comments)

Pretty interesting idea and a nice slashvertisement. How about instead, using an emulator,pushing a resolution that looks good onyour panel, and even possibly applying AA and other filters till it looks how YOU like, You have far more options for less cash that way. This reeks of monster cableitis to me.

2 days ago

Climate Damage 'Irreversible' According Leaked Climate Report

wbr1 Re:Irreversible? (475 comments)

The 'impossible' is just something that hasn't been done yet.

Nothing is impossible eh? Go slam a revolving door.

2 days ago

HP Recalls 6 Million Power Cables Over Fire Hazard

wbr1 Re: Not the PSUs? The actual cables? (135 comments)

Because 'Blackies' is such an endearing sweet term for African Americans. I mean colored folk.. oh whatever. It is how the term is used man.

2 days ago

TechCentral Scams Call Center Scammers

wbr1 There are more and more of these.. (247 comments)

I work in a repair shop. I see this every single day, and it is accelerating. Many are cold calls, but a surprising number are found in google searches. I had one today where someone was looking for outlook help as they could not access their email.

In my experience, most do 'semi' legitimate work, using normal tools for disinfection and optimization. These tools are things like hitman, MBAM, ccleaner, etc. Unfortunately, the techs do not seem very skilled, sometines causing damage, and more importantly they lie in a very convincing confidence game to get payment info and perform service. While I have yet to see anyone have extra fraudulent charges placed on them, the initial bill is fradulent given that the work never needed to be performed.

Also, if these "services" are so unethical as to lie to get you to pay, it is a small step to later using that payment information or selling it to third parties.

The worst one I saw is from a personal friend who called one of these services for assistance, paid 300 dollars for 3 years of remote assistance. One onthe to the day later, another company cold called him (he thought it was the first company). He allowed them remote access, and then when they wanted payment and he realized it was not the first company he asked them to disconnect. He was emotional and turned off his surge protector when they became pressuring and refused to disconnect. He left the room failing to realize it was a laptop and still on. The 'tech' then proceeded to delete most of the recently dated files in his user profile. These were very important files, and I was only able to recover about 85% with file recovery tools.

Unfortunately all these companies need to operate is a phone number and a simple VOIP system..maybe a quick templated website and domain. They can be set up in a very quick time, and exist outside of any willing jurisdiction to fight them. Education is the ONLY way at this time.

3 days ago

Students From States With Faster Internet Tend To Have Higher Test Scores

wbr1 Simple conclusion.... (175 comments)

Faster internet access means faster internet search results when cheating. Therefore the internet should be banned. /s

about a week ago

33 Months In Prison For Recording a Movie In a Theater

wbr1 lots of good points, but what about... (459 comments)

Industry math? 700k downloads does not equal 700k movie tickets or DVD purchases or rentals. Some significant portion of that number would never have bought the movie, whether available for download or not. Regardless of your views on criminal/violent punishment for non-violent IP crimes (I disagree on that level personally), basing any punishment on a false metric is the worst kind of injustice.

Perhaps, he should take the most money he made (legally) on any one day of his life, then counter sue for lost wages for every single day incarcerated. I mean if he made 1500 on that lottery ticket one day, then he should have made 1500 every other day including weekends!

about a week ago

Latest Wikipedia Uproar Over 'Superprotection'

wbr1 maybe... (239 comments)

This is what we need to stave off beta.

Slashdot [Superprotection needed].

about a week ago

Tor Browser Security Under Scrutiny

wbr1 Re:Why not work with Mozilla (80 comments)

Chrome/chromium on windows uses the Windows Crypto API to install and verify certs. This bypasses the TOR proxy and allows for a MITM attack with no user knowledge. Changing this requires more work then what they have to do with FF.

My questions are thus... why not move to a model where the entire OS is forced through the tor proxy, This could be done with the use of a dummy network adapter and disabling the current adapter while tor is in use. Yes it would likely break certain OS features during that time, but there it is.

TFA also discusses putting a dumbed down security 'slider' on the browser, but still the default is to allow JIT/JS. Currently you have noscript installed, but not turned off in a fresh install. A few lines of JS is enough to identify an IP or fingerprint more of the system. The default should be most secure with warnings to open it up. Period. At install time you already explin that things do not work like you are used to and then allow the user to decide to reduce security. Anything else provides an illusion of security to a naive user, but still allows an adversary easy means of detection.

about a week ago

News Aggregator Fark Adds Misogyny Ban

wbr1 Re:Sigh (736 comments)

This.. a thousand times this. as grandparent to this thread, I cannot moderate, but I do not believe that the state should issues ANY edicts regarding a religious ceremony and joining. There should be laws regarding contracts and benefits between groups of people, and nothing else. Leave marriage to the priests, and if that church does not believe in your type of union, find another.

about two weeks ago

Research Unveils Improved Method To Let Computers Know You Are Human

wbr1 Re:My only question: does it work at Google-scale? (91 comments)

Its not just working at google scale, its human-nets paid pennies by spammers to solve captchas. If it is machine-unsolvable this will happen as long as there are people poor enough to work at such menial tasks for low wages.

about two weeks ago

News Aggregator Fark Adds Misogyny Ban

wbr1 Sigh (736 comments)

Guess I have to go to 4chan now to read gay hating misanthropic posts.

about two weeks ago

Ask Slashdot: Would You Pay For Websites Without Trolls?

wbr1 Tough guy geeks... (381 comments)

This is /. Just mentioning a paywall IS trolling here.
We are the tough geeks and will browse into that rough patch on the interwebs to get our fix of data.
We will risk malware and viruses to pirate the latest films.
We will walk into a biker bar and call the biggest pagan mother fucker a gay little bitch.

Oh wait, maybe not that last one.

Seriously though.. what is considered a troll, or offensive is subjective. If I do not want imposed censorship, I sure as shit am not going to pay for it directly.

about two weeks ago

DEA Paid Amtrak Employee To Pilfer Passenger Lists

wbr1 Let's play the who goes to jail game.... (127 comments)

This sounds like a case of the left hand doesn't know what the right is doing. While neither collection method sounds constitutional to me I am not surprised.

Let's guess who gets in trouble...
The employee selling the data..check (low level scape goat)
Maybe an IT guy that allowed excessive permission.. maybe he just gets fired...
Any DEA agents or upper level management who authorized illegal and warrant-less data collection? NO
Any Amtrak executives for allowing it to be provided (through the employee or the terminal in the DEA office?) NO
If we are lucky we will hear some strong words at a congressional hearing, and that will be the end of it.

about two weeks ago

Do Dark Matter and Dark Energy Cast Doubt On the Big Bang?

wbr1 Re:microwave bright [Re:Oh good lord.] (225 comments)

If a civilisation could create a Dyson sphere, don't you think they'd have some use for all the wasted energy "radiating in infrared"? Perhaps a large portion of the star's output is used for their energy needs, and efficiency rules the day? Perhaps the drive to attain the best efficiency possible is required of a civilisation before they can reach a stage advanced enough to buld something on this scale.

about three weeks ago

2D To 3D Object Manipulation Software Lends Depth to Photographs

wbr1 Re:Ugh (76 comments)

Maybe the author smoked one whole marijuana.

about three weeks ago

New Car Heads-Up Display To Be Controlled By Hand Gestures, Voice Commands

wbr1 Re:Shut up and drive... (142 comments)

Rather than provide fancy new 'heads up' displays for drivers or built-in smart phone driver docking stations for drivers with their 'heads up' their ass, we should be working on roadside electronic surveillance and longer prison sentences for the drivers who kill people while using their smartphone.

While I agree that distraction is an issue, and solutions should be found, and I also agree that this device sounds like more distraction, longer prison terms solve nothing. Incarceration does not stop drug use, threat of life in prison does not deter murderers of bank robbers. No matter the differences in incarceration percentage or average length of incarceration, developed countries crime rates stay relatively stable. The few things being tougher on any crime does do well is break up families, provide jobs to the prison workers, and create a hated underclass that is likely to turn to crime again.

This is not to say that there should be no punishment for crime, but to say the money would likely be much better spent on proper prevention. Not more police, swat toys, and police programs, but things like education, family planning , job training, addiction recovery, even driver training, etc. For the cost of putting 2-3 people in prison for a year, a town could hire a person to do distracted driver training and testing on a closed course. All you need is an empty parking lot and some cones.

about three weeks ago

Google Spots Explicit Images of a Child In Man's Email, Tips Off Police

wbr1 Lets try this.... (790 comments)

I have no idea if this guy did this or not (innocent until proven right?) It looks like he did, but consider the following . Registered sex offenders in most states have to register their email address. Sometimes even so much as providing the password.

With legal (or cracked) access to anyone's email account (sex offender or not) lets see how easy it is to plant evidence.

1. Access account, add a folder or label (preferably hidden buy being buried in default sort order or under another folder).
2. Set filter with obscure rule to automatically route certain emails to said folder.
3. Send "illicit" or "evidentiary" messages that match said filter. These can be sent from self or whatever generated entity seems appropriate.
4. Access account again from various public IP addresses (or from target's own wifi). Read already read email, plus messages in target folder.
5. Remove filter. Have Google 'find' the evidence. Arrest wrongdoer.

This is not that far fetched. The chain of evidence doe not prove that the target is guilty, but can be made to look enough like it to convince a judge or jury. From the vantage of Google or a jury, it looks as though the subject sent or had sent, expected, and read the messages.
Just about anyone here could do this with the creds to an account - which in most situations are not terribly hard to garner.
Before you say you would notice the folder in your account, think of this. I have over 100 folders in my email account, some rarely opened, and never all visible on the screen. I wouldn't have noticed - but I may have enough knowledge to fight - a little anyway. How about a novice, when a folder named 'Archived Messages' appears. Would he/she even think twice?

I did not RTFA, but I know google uses their image search algos for blocking known child porn sites. It is not a hard step to run that against email messages. How about when the NSA/CIA/FBI tells google (via a NSL) scan all messages for x terms. How about when said terms are sent to and from hacked accounts as a matter of course?

It is important to realize that absolutely no communication that is unencrypted is private, but how about whe forged open communications can make you a criminal?

about three weeks ago



Astronomers claim dark matter found

wbr1 wbr1 writes  |  about 5 months ago

wbr1 (2538558) writes ""A team of astronomers led by Tansu Daylan (Harvard University), claims that excessive gamma-rays deteceted from the center of the galaxy by the Fermi Gamma Ray Space Telescope are not from pulsars, but dark matter. More specifically, if the theory that dark matter is made up of massive particles and anti-particles, their collision should produce gamma-ray burst signatures similar to those seen.

"If our interpretation is correct, this signal would constitute the discovery of an entirely new particle that makes up the majority of the mass found in the universe," says coauthor Dan Hooper (Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory). "I can't find words that are strong enough to capture the significance of such a discovery."

But others remain skeptical. " 'Extraordinary claims need extraordinary evidence,' as we said about the B-mode signal recently," says expert Kevork Abazajian (University of California, Irvine), referring to the discovery of inflation's fingerprint on the cosmic microwave background announced last week.
Article: ewsblog/Have-we-Spotted-Dark-Matter-in-the-Milky-Way-251964551.html
Paper on arxiv:""

Ask Slashdot: Can some of us get together and rebuild this community?

wbr1 wbr1 writes  |  about 7 months ago

wbr1 (2538558) writes "It seems abundantly clear now that Dice and the SlashBeta designers do not care one whit about the community here. They do not care about rolling in crapware into sourceforge installers. In short, the only thing that talks to them is money and stupid ideas.

Granted, it takes cash to run sites like these, but they were fine before. The question is, do some of you here want to band together, get whatever is available of slashcode and rebuild this community somewhere else? We can try to make it as it once was, a haven of geeky knowledge and frosty piss, delivered free of charge in a clean community moderated format."

Ask Slashdot: Best open source wiki/knowledgebase software for small business

wbr1 wbr1 writes  |  about 8 months ago

wbr1 (2538558) writes "I work for a small tech company that focuses on device repair, business IT support, hosted and managed services, as well as a few other tech niches. I am looking into setting up some sort of Wiki for in house knowledge. There are a couple of considerations that I am looking at. The primary one is ease of use/editing/maintenance. Nobody here has time to spend on a large learning curve just to edit articles. It would never get used. The second, and not as important, may be partitioning/permissions. At some point we may want to add articles for specific customers, or for all customers, and have some sort of granular permissions over who can not only edit, but view various articles. This would leave us with two main groups, shop and public, with the possible addition of smaller groups later. I have been doing some research, and cannot seem to find what I want, so I ask you my Slashdot siblings to bequeath your vast knowledge upon me."

ABC Streaming to require CATV provider subscription

wbr1 wbr1 writes  |  about 8 months ago

wbr1 (2538558) writes "Apparently ABC, an over the air broadcaster that should get its primary revenue from advertisements, is going to require streaming viewers to have a paid cable account to watch new episodes of shows. Or you can wait a week. I understand the perverted logic behind this. The cable companies are pushing so that more people stay and not cut the cord. Thanks Disney.

It seems to completely elude companies like this, that the more restrictions and caveats they put on their content, the more people will pirate it. Will they learn, or will the buggy whip makers whip us all with bought laws?"

Link to Original Source

Backup Provider BackBlaze releases study on hard drive longevity

wbr1 wbr1 writes  |  about 10 months ago

wbr1 (2538558) writes "From the article:

Backblaze has currently a total population of approximately 27,000 drives. Five years ago that number was about 3000.


They measured annual failure rates. If you have 100 drives for a year and five of them fail that is a 5% annual failure rate. In the first 18 months drives failed at the rate of 5.1 percent per year. For the next 18 months drives failed at the rate of about 1.4 percent per year. But after three years failures went up to 11.8 percent per year.


Link to Original Source

Half-Life 3 trademark filing may be a hoax

wbr1 wbr1 writes  |  about a year ago

wbr1 (2538558) writes "The Escapist has an article detailing the fact the the recent trademark filing for Half-Life 3 has disappeared from the (legit) site it was on. It also states that it would not be hard to hoax a filing for a company that already has filings, but it does cost about $1200 to file, so not a cheap hoax. In adition, it appears a filing for Portal 3 has now appeared.

Personally I think Valve is a master of this type of social manipulation to keep interest alive."

Link to Original Source

Half-Life 3 and other Valve games dev teams leaked

wbr1 wbr1 writes  |  about a year ago

wbr1 (2538558) writes "Eurogamer has a story detailing the exposure of Valves project management database. This (for a brief and possible intention period), showed who is working on various Valve projects, including HL3, L4D3, and the Source 2 engine.

For those who demand a second source, as covered with animated ads and lackluster information as it is, there is an article at IGN."

Valve announces Steambox, sort of.

wbr1 wbr1 writes  |  about a year ago

wbr1 (2538558) writes "A new page has appeared over at steam with this slightly cryptic text, a countdown, and an image of a console controller.

"Last year, we shipped a software feature called Big Picture, a user-interface tailored for televisions and gamepads. This year we’ve been working on even more ways to connect the dots for customers who want Steam in the living-room. Soon, we’ll be adding you to our design process, so that you can help us shape the future of Steam."

It appears Gabe Newell wants to throw his hat in the console ring now with the XBone and PS4 about to be released. The countdown to the announcement is targeted at Monday."

Link to Original Source

Amazon Payment Adds "No Class Action" Language to Terms Of Service

wbr1 wbr1 writes  |  about 2 years ago

wbr1 (2538558) writes "I just received an email from Amazon Payments, the Amazon competitor to PayPal, stating among other things, that they were changing and simplifying their policies. It should be no surprise then, that similar to what PayPal and many others have already done, they have added language removing the right to class action lawsuits. See specifically section 11.3 (edited for brevity):

1.3 Disputes. Any dispute or claim relating in any way to your visit to the Site or Seller Central or to products or services sold or distributed by us or through the Site or Seller Central (including without limitation the Service) will be resolved by binding arbitration, rather than in court, except that you may assert claims in small claims court if your claims qualify. The Federal Arbitration Act and federal arbitration law apply to this agreement....
... You and we each agree that any dispute resolution proceedings will be conducted only on an individual basis and not in a class, consolidated, or representative action. If for any reason a claim proceeds in court rather than in arbitration you and we each waive any right to a jury trial. You and we also both agree that you or we may bring suit in court to enjoin infringement or other misuse of intellectual property rights.

This is becoming more and more common, and while the end user normally doesn't make out well in a class-action suit, large settlements do provide a punishment and deterrent to corporations that abuse their power. The question becomes, what do we do to fix this so that consumers are truly protected?"


Ask Slashdot: Why are transatlantic audio/video streams garbage?

wbr1 wbr1 writes  |  about 2 years ago

wbr1 (2538558) writes "In a recent Slashdot posting, the following statement was made:

(Note: the sound quality on this translantic Skype call is poor. We suggest reading the transcript.)

This reminded me of a recent experience. I live on the east coast of the united states, and my mother lives in the UK not terribly far from London. WE chat online at least weekly, but for a special occasion, I wanted to video chat, or at least audio chat without spending $$ on either of our mobile phones, or other international calling options. We tried three different major options, Skype (free), Google talk, and Yahoo. Not one of the three could even sustain a decent audio only stream, let alone video. I wanted to do some troubleshooting, but my mom is not a geek, and I could not enlist her assistance on the other end. The question remains however, when both of us have 'broadband' connections of some sort, with more than enough bandwidth to support multiple video streams, and fast downloads of files from servers across the Atlantic, why can't what amounts to a small UDP audio stream make it through? The ISPs involved are Comcast and BT. Is it one of them? Someone in the middle depriortizing the packets? Is it Google/Yahoo/Skype. To me it seems unnecessary, so what can we do as geeks to get around, or better yet, push to have the problem solved?"


Portable Fuel Cell Battery Charger

wbr1 wbr1 writes  |  more than 2 years ago

wbr1 (2538558) writes "Mashable reports on a device being debuted at CES this year that is a portable fuel cell to recharge your devices. According to the article and the company's website, the device has a fuel cartridge and also uses a small amount of water.

Per the website: "PowerTrekk uses eco-friendly fuel cell technology which cleanly and efficiently converts hydrogen into electricity. The ability to simply insert a PowerPukk fuel pack and add water provides users instant and limitless power on the go."

This seems to not match up to my understanding of fuel cells, which use hydrogen and atmospheric oxygen to produce electricity and water. My guess is that the water is used to somehow activate the fuel which is stored as 'flexible stickers' not hydrogen gas.

This would be a nice thing if the fuel is cheap enough over time and it doesn't turn out to be vaporware."

Link to Original Source


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