Month: February 2008

Redirecting Output from a Running Process

Someone asked on a mailing list how to redirect output from a running process. They had a program which had been running for a long period of time without having stdout redirected to a file. They wanted to logout (to move the laptop that was used for the ssh session) but not kill the process […]


Future Versions of Windows

There is currently a lot of speculation about the future of Windows following the massive failure of Vista in the market. One theory that is being discussed is that Microsoft will cease kernel development and adopt a Unix kernel in the same way that Apple adopted a BSD based kernel. I predict that MS in […]


Chilled Memory Attacks

In 1996 Peter Gutmann wrote a paper titled “Secure Deletion of Data from Magnetic and Solid-State Memory” [1]. In that paper he mentions the fact that the contents of RAM last longer at lower temperatures and suggests that data could be retained for weeks at a temperature of -60C or lower (while 140C causes rapid […]


EeePC for a Teenager

I was asked for advice from a non-technical person about buying a laptop for their 15yo daughter. They were looking to spend $200 or $300. I suggested that stretching their budget to $500 for a new EeePC would be a better option than the risks associated with a second-hand laptop (laptops are all different in […]


Giving Away Hardware

For the last few years I have been actively seeking free hardware to give to members of my local LUG. Whenever a friend or business associate mentions that they are upgrading or replacing computers I enquire what they plan to do with the old ones and request that the old gear be given to me […]

Watching While Waiting

Over the past four years every visit to a doctor or hospital has involved some time spent in a waiting room, in the case of hospital visits it has often been more than an hour waiting. Each of those waiting rooms has had a selection of bad magazines and a TV. If I ever visit […]


Service Videos

I just read interesting blog post about Lenovo service information [1]. They have huge documents about how to service their machines as well as apparently having videos in flash format to show how to perform various tasks. The first thing I’d like to see is other companies following this example. I clearly recall one time […]


Athlon Memory Problems

I had an old Compaq Athlon 1GHz system that seemed to be broken. It would display random things on the screen from the BIOS and fail the boot, it looked like a motherboard problem. Fortunately before I gave it away (I give away all my broken machines to members of my local LUG who want […]


Oracle Unbreakable Linux

Matt Bottrell writes about the Oracle Linux offerings presented at LCA 2008 [1] The one thing that Oracle does which I really object to is the “unbreakable” part of their advertising. They have pictures of penguins in armour and the only reasonable assumption is that their system is more secure in some way. As far […] Security

Laptop vs Book Weight

Matt Bottrell wrote an interesting and informative post about laptops for school kids [1]. His conclusion is that based on technical features the OLPC machine is best suited for primary school children and one of the ASUS EeePC, the Intel Classmate, and the Everex Cloudbook would be best suited for high-school students. The Asus EeePC […]