France Outlaws Hashed Passwords
The "decret d'application" of the law (it's a law from 2004 but not applicable before this "decret") doesn't prohibit hashed password. It's a misinterpretation of the decret.
Actually, it states that IF you store the password in clear text for authentication, you have to keep the password in clear text in your logs during a year. But IF you store a hashed version of the password, you have to log the last hashed used. And if you don't store your users' password (logged via facebook or other centralized authentication) you don't have to.
The decret only specify what to keep in the logs IF the information is already known and stored. It doesn't specify WHAT to store. What to store is specified by a EU directive.
8Mbit Broadband to Become Available in the UK
This speed is not available to everyone, and is the ATM speed, not the IP one. Most old subscribers are still on ADSL, not ADSL2+, but migration is in process...
The speed you can actually have is the full speed of your line, so if you have a long line, you will have "low" speed (well, something like 4 ou 5 Mb/s...). Fortunately, we have good lines in France (most lines are below 5 or 6 km).
I am an old subscriber to free, and they offered me the possibility to have the new freebox, compatible ADSL2+. For instance, my line is 1200m long, and I can download a Linux iso (thanks to free for their huge ftp) at 1.7MB/s (yes MegaBytes)... cool, I have toi buy new hard drives now