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Alan Coo

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  1. Hi folks. I've just been asked for AV recommendations for a friend's new Macbook and I'll be honest, I know jeff all about Macs. Is conventional wisdom still "don't bother" or are there any actual realistic threats in the fruit-based world these days? And if so, what would people suggest? Thanks in advance, card's behind the bar. Alan.
  2. "I guess prorogation has no teeth" It's not supposed to "have teeth." It's the end of the parliamentary session is all, I guess in US terms it's what you'd call recess? "latest tally is that Boris is now 5 motions lost for 5 motions tabled." Incorrect. He's six for six.
  3. For some value of "recently," Back when Rik Mayall died, I was talking about it at work. One of my apprentices piped up, "who's Rik Mayall?" Really? OK. I tried various angles, The Young Ones? Nada. Bottom? Nope. Etc, etc. I'd to resort to Google Images for the penny to finally drop, "Oh, you mean the guy from the Bombardier advert?!"
  4. Three things: 1) The problem isn't proroguing in and of itself, the problem is the timescale. It's usually a few days, it's not been as long as five weeks in several decades. 2) Where we are right now it's not stalling so that brexit won't happen, in fact it's quite the opposite. The UK will leave the EU by default unless we do something stop it in the interim. 3) The UK is a representative democracy, not a direct democracy. The anti-democratic move would be for parliament to fail to act in the country's best interests. What the populace may think they want is an irrelevance, we don't get to decide individual policy.
  5. Two things here: 1) Counter-intuitively perhaps, public text is a relatively poor two-way communications medium. Nuance is lost, and it's easy to forget that most of the audience probably doesn't know you so what might "obviously" be a joke or a tongue-in-cheek comment in your head can be taken wrongly (and badly) by a reader. I've seen countless arguments spiral out of control because poster A says something, poster B misinterprets it and responds aggressively, person A doesn't understand why B is so angry and responds in kind, and suddenly we're off for a dozen pages of slanging over literally nothing. 2) Sadly, some people are just dicks. I've said time and again, with any demographic - christians, vegetarians, lesbians, comic book fans, you name it - it's a vocal minority giving the rest a bad name and they aren't representative of the demographic as a whole. With any fandom where people are passionate about something there will always be that one guy who is hell bent on spoiling everyone else's fun. Don't be that guy.
  6. On asset control, It's not just about knowing what you have. It's knowing who owns what you have. Any pillock can run an nmap scan. Going "well, who's responsible for that, then?" is what repeatedly bites us on the arse. Though we're a lot better now than we were.
  7. Blocking Windows executables from running in data directories and temporary locations (eg. %APPDATA%). Trivial to implement and potentially stops lots of email-borne malware dead in its tracks. Anything legit which requires this (IIRC TeamViewer does?) can be whitelisted individually.
  8. Is it possible (and desirable?) to perhaps redact displaying surnames to readers who aren't logged in?
  9. deep breath Hi everyone. I'm Alan, but you knew that cos it says so right there. <-- Like many UK geeks around my age I started messing with computers circa 1983 with the humble ZX Spectrum, and a couple of decades later I've clearly come a long way as I'm currently waiting for a shiny new ZX Spectrum Next to arrive. I've spent the intervening years taking things to bits to see how they work and occasionally putting them back together again. My early hac- uh, exploring of computers other than my own was on PR1ME minicomputers (if anyone remembers those?) at college / university in the late 80s / early 90s. After uni I landed a job in Tech Support, thus being dragged kicking and screaming into the PC world, and I've spent a good chunk of my adult life in and around various support / Wintel Sysadmin type roles ever since. I've also dabbled with webdev back when editor of choice was Notepad, done bits of coding, and had brief stints in management a couple of times (with hilarious consequences). I moved into security earlier this year and am now an SME for a largish telecoms / managed services / cloud provider company. I've spent most of my time in this role so far attempting to get my skill set back up to something vaguely approaching current (if you need an Exchange 2003 server fixing, I'm your guy), attending cons and generally suffering very badly from Impostor Syndrome. It's dark and there are wolves. When I'm not pushing buttons I'm a moderator on a mountain biking website [uh, Alan, that's still pushing buttons...], nurturing an escape room obsession and playing (OK, buying) board games. I'm also aspie, so if I write something that can be taken one of two ways and one of those ways upsets or offends you, I probably meant the other one. Probably. (-: Cheers for reading, Alan.
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