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5876  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Matrix-style tech becoming a reality? on: July 14, 2011, 11:44:28 AM
I'll take a chip for:

Genetics
Particle Physics
Cosmology
Mathmatics (as much as can be crammed in starting with Integral Calculus)
EMACS

 Cool

5877  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: I am so sick of google's search result urls with tracking info on: July 14, 2011, 06:55:35 AM
+1 for DuckDuckGo.  Kiss

My second preference is ixquick.

These days I only use Google if I have to.

5878  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Dumb backup method - lost several years of notes on: July 14, 2011, 06:45:13 AM
Wiw! You just can't catch a break from it these last few days, can you? That truly rots! Sad

I'm not partial to swearing...

But right now I think you're well within your rights to fire off a good Saxon cuss word or two. (Maybe you'd better make it a baker's dozen while you're at it.)
 ohmy
5879  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: A M A Z I N G ! - I got a total refund without any questions asked. on: July 14, 2011, 06:35:56 AM
As Mark Twain observed: Always do right. This will gratify some people and astonish the rest.

I glad to see Overclockers both gratified and astonished you.  Thmbsup

(With a tip of the hat to Overclockers for providing such good service on a customer "satisfaction" issue. That's something that's becoming increasingly rare these days.  smiley )

5880  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Will facebook ever be the same? on: July 14, 2011, 02:04:50 AM
Thanks for the Proust nod. Everyone has their literary loves, but Proust is mine simply because I would have loved to lived from 1870-1914 with one big qualification: If I were rich!

@Z- That's a good qualification for living in any era.  Grin

Also +1 on the 1870-1914. I'm a big Sherlock Holmes fan for precisely that reason. Like the character. Love the stories. But I adore the period. Probably why I like Steampunk, Verne, and Wells so much too.
 Thmbsup
5881  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Will facebook ever be the same? on: July 13, 2011, 07:40:17 PM

Might as well jump in ... I need at least one friend so I don't look totally pathetic.  cheesy


Awww... Sad

@Zaine - could you please 'friend' (or circle or whatever) Stoic so he doesn't look pathetic?

Pretty please?  smiley

 Grin

5882  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Will facebook ever be the same? on: July 13, 2011, 06:49:47 PM
Just out of curiosity...

I clicked on Zaine and Stoic's links above.

I'm not a part of G+.

I can see the profile info including the About page plus all the posts made; I can also click on the people in their Circles - and do the same with their pages...and the people in their Circles...

Is all that info out in public by design or can you elect to restrict who can see it?

I was under the impression that stuff was only available to G+ members and was restricted to those who were in your Circles.
 huh
5883  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Will facebook ever be the same? on: July 13, 2011, 01:24:58 PM
Signed up today. Can be found at:
https://plus.google.com/108871877301789098084

Proust huh? (Exquisite taste in lit. Thmbsup )

But  how come I can see your profile info at that link if I'm not a G+ member?

 huh



5884  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Google+ on: July 12, 2011, 03:16:50 PM
I'm starting to look into ways to use the internet as a connection only, but have private networks setup for myself and friends.

I've actually toyed with the idea of resurrecting a FidoNet. It would be a private affair. Strictly by invite. But any registered member could extend an invitation.


                   __
                  /  \
                 /|oo \
                (_|  /_)
                 _`@/_ \    _
                |     | \   \\
                | (*) |  \   ))
   ______       |__U__| /  \//
  / FIDO \       _//|| _\   /
 (________)     (_/(_|(____/



Problem is, my old guard" friends are 100% for it. (As long as I set it up.  undecided) Its really big advantage (in the unlikely event of a catastrophic backbone crash) is it could be run (like POTS phones) without the Internet. You could even implement it to run using shortwave radio if you had to.

But the young 'uns all insist on something less retro like Elgg or Boonex's Dolphin.

Not that it really matters. It's the community rather than the software that makes the difference.

Maybe that's why I prefer dropping by this forum whenever I'm feeling social rather than pine for FB and its ilk? smiley

5885  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Google+ on: July 12, 2011, 02:57:22 PM
I'd like to see some smarter, less in-your-face Americans, get a shot at things. Sad




@nosh - Very well said. Very well said indeed...

(Hope you don't mind if I quote you someday.)
5886  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: USB Drive shows Write Delay error on: July 12, 2011, 02:09:02 PM
Oooo ...are you using either Catalyst or nForce drivers on your machine?
5887  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Windows Live Skydrive: Tried Anyone? on: July 12, 2011, 01:55:23 PM
addendum: another thing worth looking at in the log is the job run times. If backup time is steadily or abruptly increasing without a corresponding increase in the number of items being backed up, that's a red flag. It could indicate hardware issues, excessive file fragmentation, or corruption of the backup system's database or indexes. All are things worth investigating before disaster strikes.
 smiley

Slowly increasing backup time (other options): Dirty tape heads, failing/EOL tape, or (abrupt increase) somebody left QuickBooks (or some other crapware) running again (fun with file locking).

In a perfect world we get these types of detail. However, in SOHO/SMB ... Not so much.

Very true. That's the world I live in too BTW.  smiley

P.S.

Quote
somebody left QuickBooks (or some other crapware) running again

 Grin Grin Grin Grin Grin

Agree 100% with that characterization. Thmbsup

5888  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Google+ on: July 12, 2011, 10:36:37 AM

It just feels wrong that they can keep fucking up and coming back because they have obscene amounts of money to throw around.


But isn't that just what's been called The American Way? Grin tongue

5889  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Google+ on: July 12, 2011, 10:04:10 AM
The more I read about G+ heavy-handedness, the more I think I'm gonna build my own if I ever feel the desperate need to be part of a "social" network.  Grin
5890  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Windows Live Skydrive: Tried Anyone? on: July 12, 2011, 09:36:19 AM
Look at them for what? If it says verified/successful, and it's about that big... *Shrug* The missing data (files) weren't large enough to raise any flags (maybe 100MB total out of an 85GB backup) ... So it's pretty much a Perfect (oh shit) Storm of events.

If a year's worth of data suddenly drops off your backup you don't notice something is wrong? Or you don't think it's unusual when yesterday's backup had over a million items and today it's around 80% of that? huh


You will often need to change how your backup reports are configured since the default is usually either to log nothing - or everything.  Unfortunately, most people have them log every detail - which is useless since it can easily run to hundreds of text pages.

But that still doesn't make them totally useless. As you pointed out, most have a file count summary and success/fail report at the end of the job. And I do eyeball for certain especially critical directories. I don't care if the office temp's 'furry porn' collection went missing. But I do worry when accounting or other important directories flag backup errors on half the files.

 I had a client who was religiously backing up nightly and never checking logs. If she did, she might have noticed that starting six months earlier every log was telling her nothing had gotten backed up because of "excessive defective media sectors" on the external drives.

Another had backups - but they were all legitimately failing verification. Which the log dutifully reported.

Care to guess what happened when they needed to use one of them? cheesy
--///

addendum: another thing worth looking at in the log is the job run times. If backup time is steadily or abruptly increasing without a corresponding increase in the number of items being backed up, that's a red flag. It could indicate hardware issues, excessive file fragmentation, or corruption of the backup system's database or indexes. All are things worth investigating before disaster strikes.
 smiley



5891  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Windows Live Skydrive: Tried Anyone? on: July 11, 2011, 05:06:15 PM
Very few offering free services ... call me a cynic but in the world of data storage I suspect you are likely to get what you pay for - and if you are paying you at least have some comeback if/when things go wrong.

Excellent point...especially the "when" part. Thmbsup

I'm thinking of using a remote backup service more than I have previously. But I'll still hedge my bet with local backups.

And I'll probably use two separate service providers - and alternate back and forth between them on a daily basis just in case. Cool

5892  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Windows Live Skydrive: Tried Anyone? on: July 11, 2011, 04:56:58 PM
OK...I'm going to have to pick your brain on your preferred backup procedure one day...

Not much pickin's there I'm afraid. Grin

It varies depending on who and what - and how much time you have to make a backup. The big problem with "overnight backup" is that our data footprint has gotten so large we're now running out of "night" before we're running out of disk space.

Methodology in order of preference:

0. Real-time duplication of critical files following any change
1. File-by-file simple copy
2. Directory synchronization
3. Image/snapshot backup
4. Traditional "full" backup

For most clients we:

  • Go RAID-1 for all user data.
  • Sync current user data to an external drive at midday and close of business M-F
  • Copy (w/verf) all user data to rotating secondary external drives after EOD sync is complete.
  • Image user data drive(s) weekly - retention varies by client
  • Image system drives weekly - or following any update

System file backups depend upon the OS. We follow the publishers recommendations as to what to back up and how often.

For home, I image my system drive immediately after initial installation - and following any major update after that. My data gets synced to an external drive daily. Full copy of all files gets made to a second external drive once per week. Critical "keeper" stuff gets backed up to a variety of media on an ad hoc but regular basis. When in doubt, I make copies. I'm neurotic about that.  Cool

That's about it. Thmbsup

5893  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Win XP reboots sometimes *after* startup [Any Ideas?] on: July 11, 2011, 03:56:44 PM
Had same error code myself.

Long shot: Are you running an AMD or an Intel CPU?

 If AMD and your mobo is using nForce drivers, try temporarily disabling the onboard nForce NIC(s) and see if the problem goes away. I had that happen on an AMD box I had after I installed a 1Gb NIC card and stopped using the built-in. I took me forever to figure out since the problem surfaced about three months afterwards following an WSUS update so I didn't equate hardware with the problem.

------------

Anyway...

Here's the "official" description of an 8E error:

STOP 0x0000008E errors are usually caused by memory hardware failures and more rarely by device driver issues, viruses, or hardware failures other than your RAM.

Here's the rest of it:


Buried in there was one thing in it I didn't know. This note:

Quote
If STOP error 0x0000008E is followed by 0xc0000005, as in STOP: 0x0000008E (0xc0000005, x, x, x), applying the latest Windows service pack will likely fix your issue.

Might be worth a try.

Note: if you let Windows update any hardware drivers thru WSUS - roll them back. The generic ones Microsoft issues don't work very well with a lot of hardware. I always use the drivers supplied by the PC manufacturer if at all possible. Especially if they're non-Intel chipset video drivers.

Luck! Thmbsup

5894  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: USB Drive shows Write Delay error on: July 11, 2011, 03:42:49 PM
@40hz:[/b] not too sure about the malware side, I'd expect the internal HDD to get hit quite often if that was the case.

@4wd - My initial thought too. But if he has something that didn't quite install properly (and many a piece of malware doesn't) you'll get these weird disk and other IO problems. Used to drive me nuts with some of my clients until I started looking for it.

Plus, he was seriously infected previously. And there was mention of 6-7 Gb file transfers - which leads me to think of movie/game DVD files - and where a lot of them get downloaded from. So...

But you're right. The other things you mentioned are equally valid and just as (if not more) likely than malware.

Call it a hunch on my part. Grin

5895  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Windows Live Skydrive: Tried Anyone? on: July 11, 2011, 03:35:03 PM
Nightly backups churned on for months until somebody needed one of the year X records that weren't there anymore.

One of the reasons why I try never to do incremental backups any more. I'll do full backups, image snapshots - or sync directories. But no incrementals. All they ever seem to do is increase the potential points of failure along with the likelihood of not being able to restore a backup.

re: your client

Eek! indeed...

One more reason why it's so important to actually look very carefully at those backup logs each day. (Not that I or anybody else I know ever seems to do it religiously. undecided Grin )

5896  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: USB Drive shows Write Delay error on: July 11, 2011, 03:20:01 PM
Most likely culprit is either a malware infection or a problem with his system's USB root hub(s).

The first is relatively easy, if tedious, to fix. You'd need to run multiple scans using more than one antimalware utility to be reasonably assured you got his machine clean. Better would be to do a clean OS reinstall if he's seriously infected. (Tell him to be a little more careful where's he's visiting - and a lot more careful where he's getting his files from next time.)

A USB root hub issue is a little harder to deal with. You'd need to clean out all the USB mass storage drivers with something like GhostBuster or a similar utility. Then add the devices back one by one and let them reinstall themselves.

If it really is a USB issue, that should fix it..

Right now, I'd be more inclined to put money on malware causing the problem for his machine. Especially in the wake of some of what you've told us about it.

Luck! Thmbsup

5897  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Real SciFi Technology - a 3D-Replicator on: July 11, 2011, 08:06:33 AM
@Deo- sorry about you Mom. Having gone thru similar with mine, I can relate. Wish her my best. My best to you too. smiley

5898  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Google+ on: July 11, 2011, 07:52:15 AM
^quite correct.

Privacy is not something you can get back after the fact. You really need to think about it from Day1 - or forget about it. For most people it's already too late.

Fortunately, for most people, it will never be a problem.  smiley

Personally, I don't have a problem with FB or G+ requiring real names or gender info. It's their house, therefor it's their rules. If you don't want to play by them: go elsewhere, build your own, or do without.

That's pretty much the way everything else works in this world, so it's not like anybody's breaking new ground here.  Grin

5899  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Google+ on: July 11, 2011, 07:27:38 AM
For me file it under layered security practice. The obscurity layer, granted not the best...but still worth using. Just because the information can be put together doesn't mean it needs to be prepackaged, preassembled, and printed on a T-shirt with a freaking bow on top. Make'em work for it. Wink

I think that's it exactly.

A lesson learned back in the days of the "counterculture."

Years ago a friend of mine summed it up as follows: "Do the "soft parade," man. Stand up for what you believe in. But no need to paint a bull's eye on your back just to prove your sincerity. It's not you lack for balls. It's just being smart enough not to hang 'em out where they can be kicked by every casual passerby.

My old buddy ('Arv') spoke wisdom.  Thmbsup  Grin


5900  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / New Riff on a Standing Desk: Introducing the Sitting/Standing Desk Hybrid on: July 10, 2011, 08:34:16 PM
No opinions or comments from me since I haven't tried it. But it does look like an interesting idea to either build - or use as a starting point for your own design.

[attach]   [attach]

Quote
Fitting yourself a sit-to-stand desk
July 9, 2011 – 3:06 pm

It’s been a while since I wrote about geeky things, so here goes: I love my new desk setup. Several months in the making and saving, a few days in shopping, and a few hours of setup and calibration… and it makes me smile every time I use it.

Design criteria:

    
  • A sit-stand workstation that makes use of my existing laptop, monitor, and keyboard/mouse.
  • Assisted lifting that does not require power – which means hydraulics or springs or levers or something of the sort. Sorry, geekdesk.
  • Affordable on a grad student’s budget. (This desk is the most expensive piece of furniture in my apartment, but it’s also the one I’ll spend the most time at. The bed is the second most expensive, and it’s probably the one I’ll spend the second most time using, so this seemed fair.)
  • Sturdy — which, for something this specialized and load-bearing, means getting quality components meant for the use, rather than cobbling together stacks of boxes and books and clamps myself.
  • Portable, such that I can disassemble the components and haul them to the next place in a minivan (better yet: car).

I wanted a sit-stand workstation because I spend ridiculous amounts of time on my computer and am the restless sort, so being able to change positions and maintain proper alignment while I fidget around is a real boon to ergonomics. I’ve made makeshift sitting and standing desks for years, from kitchen counters to book piles to a strategically placed empty dresser, but no matter how well I set them up, a static desk just didn’t seem right.

The past few years of experimentation did teach me about how one should be aligned in both sitting and standing positions, though.

Link to full article here.

(With thanks to LXer.com for the find!) Cool

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