Why Microsoft Will Not Extend Windows 7 End-Of-Life

July 13th, 2014

[This is mostly a summary of a discussion on Google Plus, that you can find here]

Recap: The world (or at least clueless tech journalists) was surprised to learn (once they bothered to look it up) that Microsoft will not extends Windows 7 end of “mainstream support” – which is scheduled for January 2015 (about 6 months from now). This was all planned way in advance – Microsoft basically committed to end “mainstream support” in 2015 by not releasing any service pack for Windows 7 since the beginning of 2010, instead they want people to move to the next version of their software. In most normal software markets, this is a no-brainer – who have heard of a Macintosh user still clinging to Mac OS X 10.7? or an Adobe Photoshop user who refuses to upgrade past CS3? But instead you now hear calls for Microsoft to extends Windows 7 an artificial life line, like it did with XP.

And here’s why XP will never happen again:

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מתכון: עוף חמוץ מתוק (לא בצבע ורוד)

July 10th, 2014

הנה מתכון פשוט לאסקלופ(1) עוף, ברוטב לא בסגנון סיני או בצבע ורוד או משהו כזה, אבל כן בטעם חמוץ מתקתק. הרכיבים לארבע מנות.

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  1. כמו שניצל, אבל בלי הציפוי []

Microsoft vs. No-IP and the failure of the US legal system

July 9th, 2014

There is one thing that really troubled me about the Microsoft dynamic DNS fiasco that no one seems to talk about, which I really wanted to raise, but first here’s a short recap for those not in the know: Microsoft “cyber-security” department convinced a US federal court to issue an order to transfer 22 internet domains owned by the popular No-IP dynamic DNS service into their custody, in an attempt to remove specific hosts under those domains that are supposedly used as malware control centers.

The issue I have is very simple – under what conditions can it be possible for a private company, to ask a court to transfer ownership of a property from another private company? This sounds seriously like private policing and somehow it is endorsed by the judicial system ?!? Under what authority can something like this be allowed?

This situation is massively more grievous because the court order was given “ex-parte” – legalese for “without the other party appearing to defend itself”, but even if everything was over the table and in the clear, and the defending lawyer incredibly incompetent, what kind of argument a private entity can offer to get a court to simply transfer control of another private entity?(1).

  1. except obviously arguing that the property was stolen, which is clearly not the case []

Code Spaces break-in lessons: using your infrastructure provider for backup is a single point of failure

June 30th, 2014

Summary of the events of the Code Space break-in: Code Spaces was hosting their services on Amazon Web Services VPS infrastructure. An attacker managed to gain access to their AWS administration console account and after his demands for ransom were not answered, proceeded to delete all the data in the account.

The disaster recovery plan for Code Spaces was based on having machine images and data backups stored in AWS, everything was gone, and Code Spaces basically had to shutdown.

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Why I hate 4K displays

June 18th, 2014

Well, I don’t have very high resolution displays at all (you might call them UHD displays?), but the name “4K” is really stupid – so please stop using it.

What is it 4000 of anyway? Can anyone tell me? Hint – no it doesn’t have 4000 pixels, nor 4000 scan lines or 4000 anything or event anything else that is divisible by 4000. Although the horizontal resolution is almost 4000 (actuallly 3840 pixels wide), and while Wikipedia will have you believe that is the reason for the name, it is not so.

No, the reason is so much stupider than that: the name “4K” is because “4K displays” are 4 times larger (in pixel count) than 1080p displays (1080 being about 1K). This is so stupid, because while UHD displays do indeed have 4 times the pixels of a 1080p (“1K”) display, the 1080 in the number does not relate to the number of pixels – it is the number of scan lines in the picture – of which a UHD display has only twice as much. But “2K” just doesn’t have the right ring to it… so, the branding masters made do with what they have. Sooooo stupid…

What to do when your virtual private server is really slow

June 8th, 2014

Ok, this is not a real solution for all types of problems – just a tip, that worked for me today, to try out if you can’t figure out what the problem is.

I’m running a VM on Amazon EC2, and looking at top, I saw that most of the CPU time was spent either in “steal/guest” or “IRQ“. Now steal/guest is kernel speak for “I wanted to allocate some CPU time for progams, but the hypervisor stole it” – which is not surprising on a a virtualization solution, but if it happens all the time then that means that your physical host is constantly loaded by other VMs that take as much CPU time as they can. The second item “IRQ” is time the kernel spends at handling interrupt requests from the hardware. This shouldn’t consume a significant amount of time unless the hardware has a problem – another good indication that you want to move your VPS to another physical host.

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Script day: upload files to Amazon S3 using Bash

May 26th, 2014

Here is a very simple Bash script that uploads a file to Amazon’s S3. I’ve looked for a simple explanation on how to do that without perl scripts or C# code, and could find none. So after a bit of experimentation and some reverse engineering, here’s the simple sample code:

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מתכון: קציצות בקר מדהימות

May 17th, 2014

או לפחות כך במקור(1). קציצות בקר בריאות (אם אתם לא אנטי-”בשר אדום”), מכיוון שאין בהן לחם והן אפויות בתנור כך שרוב השומן יוצא בזמן ההכנה. עד כה נוסה מספר פעמים בהצלחה.
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  1. כרגיל מתכון שהשאלתי מכמה מקומות באינטרנט ושיפצתי לפי טעמי []

Script Day: SSH to a host behind a NAT

April 27th, 2014

I use SSH daily to work with different remote services, and its always a very straight-forward process… unless the remote server you want to work with is on LAN somewhere behind NAT(1). When you need to access such an internal server, the only option is to SSH into the firewall(2), and then SSH again to your server of choice.

But there’s a better way, and you don’t even have to fiddle with the firewall server!

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  1. router that does Network Address Translation so the servers address is not accessible from outside the LAN []
  2. or some other server that has legs both inside and outside the LAN – I’m using a DNATed server, what most off-the-shelf routers incorrectly call “DMZ“ []

ifttt is a new service that lets you connect internet services one to another

December 2nd, 2013

For example, when I post to my blog, it will automatically tweet my post on my behalf – on my twitter account (automagically). Is it awesome or not?

BTW – “tweet” or “twit”? How does one “operate” in twitter?