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Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411095 is a reply to message #411083] Sat, 18 September 2021 17:46 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Dan Espen is currently offline  Dan Espen
Messages: 3748
Registered: January 2012
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Senior Member
Peter Flass <peter_flass@yahoo.com> writes:

> Ahem A Rivet's Shot <steveo@eircom.net> wrote:
>> On Sat, 18 Sep 2021 00:49:00 -0600
>> Grant Taylor <gtaylor@tnetconsulting.net> wrote:
>>
>>> On 9/18/21 12:27 AM, Ahem A Rivet's Shot wrote:
>>>> I suppose the real question is why not recompile them to take
>>>> advantage of the newer hardware. I know during Y2K work that a lot of
>>>> instances of lost source code came to light, are people still running
>>>> binaries for which there is no source ?
>>>
>>> Why recompile something just for the sake of recompiling it?
>>>
>>> If it's working just fine and is exhibiting no symptoms, why mess with it?
>>
>> Yeah I get it, you might be depending on an old undocumented
>> compiler bug or you might fall foul of a new one so why risk the new shiny
>> compiler that might get 10% better performance and might break the
>> application.
>
> I ran into this trying to recompile some code that was written for PL/I(F)
> with the Enterprise compiler. Several constructs were rejected. This was in
> gray areas where the documentation didn’t definitively allow or not allow
> the code. After a while it became not worth it to me to make a lot of
> changes to fit the new compiler.

Similar here, large amounts of PL/I and a bit of it broke with
Enterprise PL/I. Strange how a new compiler can suddenly make
uninitialized variables start causing problems.

We had more than that though including some new compiler bugs.

--
Dan Espen
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411096 is a reply to message #411081] Sat, 18 September 2021 17:50 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Dan Espen is currently offline  Dan Espen
Messages: 3748
Registered: January 2012
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Senior Member
Peter Flass <peter_flass@yahoo.com> writes:

> Thomas Koenig <tkoenig@netcologne.de> wrote:
>> Ahem A Rivet's Shot <steveo@eircom.net> schrieb:
>>> On Sat, 18 Sep 2021 04:07:50 -0000 (UTC)
>>> John Levine <johnl@taugh.com> wrote:
>>>
>>>> According to Branimir Maksimovic <branimir.maksimovic@gmail.com>:
>>>> >> You can still run programs compiled on a 360 on the latest “z” box.
>>>> >>
>>>> > Why?
>>>>
>>>> Because they are still useful? Is this a trick question?
>>>
>>> I suppose the real question is why not recompile them to take
>>> advantage of the newer hardware.
>>
>> Recompile?
>>
>> You mean re-assemble?
>>
>>> I know during Y2K work that a lot of
>>> instances of lost source code came to light, are people still running
>>> binaries for which there is no source ?
>
> There was a lot of this during conversions from 1401 to S/360. People
> tended to patch the 1401 object decks rather than change the source and
> recompile. If the source hadn’t been lost, it likely didn’t reflect the
> running program.

During my long career I ran into very few instances of missing source.
Only 1 comes to mind.

As I remember, operations would not accept an object deck with patches.
At the same time they accepted the new object deck they
secured the source code and listing.

--
Dan Espen
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411097 is a reply to message #411088] Sat, 18 September 2021 18:30 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Anonymous
Karma:
Originally posted by: Thomas Koenig

J Clarke <jclarke.873638@gmail.com> schrieb:
> On Sat, 18 Sep 2021 18:20:22 -0000 (UTC), John Levine
> <johnl@taugh.com> wrote:
>
>> It appears that Ahem A Rivet's Shot <steveo@eircom.net> said:
>>> On Sat, 18 Sep 2021 04:07:50 -0000 (UTC)
>>> John Levine <johnl@taugh.com> wrote:
>>>
>>>> According to Branimir Maksimovic <branimir.maksimovic@gmail.com>:
>>>> >> You can still run programs compiled on a 360 on the latest “z” box.
>>>> >>
>>>> >Why?
>>>>
>>>> Because they are still useful? Is this a trick question?
>>>
>>> I suppose the real question is why not recompile them to take
>>> advantage of the newer hardware.
>>
>> A lot of 360 software was written in assembler. I gather a fair amount still is.
>> For some they still have the source, some they don't, but even if they do, it's assembler.
>>
>> The newer hardware has bigger addresses and some more instructions but they don't run any faster.
>> If you look at the zSeries principles of operation you can see the many hacks they invented to
>> let old 24 bit addresss 360 code work with more modern 31 and 64 bit code.
>
> Something that ran adequately on a machine with a 10 MHz clock will
> generally run so much more than adequately on a machine with a 5 GHz
> clock that there's not much incentive to optimize anyway.

There are a couple of things that could go wrong, though, especially
if the problem sizes have grown, as they tend to do.

Tradeoffs between disk speed and memory made in the 1980s may not
work as well when the relative performances of CPU and discs have
diverged as much as they did, and there is a factor of 10^n more
data to process, and all of a sudden you find there is this
n^2 algorithm hidden somewhere...
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411099 is a reply to message #411097] Sat, 18 September 2021 21:55 Go to previous messageGo to next message
John Levine is currently offline  John Levine
Messages: 1288
Registered: December 2011
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Senior Member
According to Thomas Koenig <tkoenig@netcologne.de>:
>>>> > >> You can still run programs compiled on a 360 on the latest “z” box.

> There are a couple of things that could go wrong, though, especially
> if the problem sizes have grown, as they tend to do.
>
> Tradeoffs between disk speed and memory made in the 1980s may not
> work as well when the relative performances of CPU and discs have
> diverged as much as they did, and there is a factor of 10^n more
> data to process, and all of a sudden you find there is this
> n^2 algorithm hidden somewhere...

Nobody is claiming we still run *all* of the code written in the 1960s.

I gather there is some code where for financial reasons it has to produce
results the same as what it has produced for the past forty years, even
though the programmer who wrote it has retired or died, even though
the results may depend on funky details of the 360's ill-designed floating
point, or of shift-and-round-decimal instructions where for some reason
it uses a rounding digit of 6 rather than the normal 5.

It can be worth a lot to keep running the actual code rather than trying
to reverse engineer it and hope you got all the warts right for every case.
--
Regards,
John Levine, johnl@taugh.com, Primary Perpetrator of "The Internet for Dummies",
Please consider the environment before reading this e-mail. https://jl.ly
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411100 is a reply to message #411099] Sat, 18 September 2021 22:08 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Anonymous
Karma:
Originally posted by: J. Clarke

On Sun, 19 Sep 2021 01:55:22 -0000 (UTC), John Levine
<johnl@taugh.com> wrote:

> According to Thomas Koenig <tkoenig@netcologne.de>:
>>>> >> >> You can still run programs compiled on a 360 on the latest “z” box.
>
>> There are a couple of things that could go wrong, though, especially
>> if the problem sizes have grown, as they tend to do.
>>
>> Tradeoffs between disk speed and memory made in the 1980s may not
>> work as well when the relative performances of CPU and discs have
>> diverged as much as they did, and there is a factor of 10^n more
>> data to process, and all of a sudden you find there is this
>> n^2 algorithm hidden somewhere...
>
> Nobody is claiming we still run *all* of the code written in the 1960s.
>
> I gather there is some code where for financial reasons it has to produce
> results the same as what it has produced for the past forty years, even
> though the programmer who wrote it has retired or died, even though
> the results may depend on funky details of the 360's ill-designed floating
> point, or of shift-and-round-decimal instructions where for some reason
> it uses a rounding digit of 6 rather than the normal 5.
>
> It can be worth a lot to keep running the actual code rather than trying
> to reverse engineer it and hope you got all the warts right for every case.

That's something that I live. If there's a mismatch we don't let it
slide, we learn the reason why. When you have assets under management
that look like the National Debt a little tiny mistake can be a huge
lawsuit.
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411101 is a reply to message #411099] Sun, 19 September 2021 02:22 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Anonymous
Karma:
Originally posted by: Bob Eager

On Sun, 19 Sep 2021 01:55:22 +0000, John Levine wrote:

> I gather there is some code where for financial reasons it has to
> produce results the same as what it has produced for the past forty
> years, even though the programmer who wrote it has retired or died, even
> though the results may depend on funky details of the 360's ill-designed
> floating point, or of shift-and-round-decimal instructions where for
> some reason it uses a rounding digit of 6 rather than the normal 5.

Do you have a reference to anything on that rounding decision? It's
actually relevant to something I'm working on...



--
Using UNIX since v6 (1975)...

Use the BIG mirror service in the UK:
http://www.mirrorservice.org
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411110 is a reply to message #411101] Sun, 19 September 2021 23:24 Go to previous messageGo to next message
John Levine is currently offline  John Levine
Messages: 1288
Registered: December 2011
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Senior Member
According to Bob Eager <news0009@eager.cx>:
> On Sun, 19 Sep 2021 01:55:22 +0000, John Levine wrote:
>
>> I gather there is some code where for financial reasons it has to
>> produce results the same as what it has produced for the past forty
>> years, even though the programmer who wrote it has retired or died, even
>> though the results may depend on funky details of the 360's ill-designed
>> floating point, or of shift-and-round-decimal instructions where for
>> some reason it uses a rounding digit of 6 rather than the normal 5.
>
> Do you have a reference to anything on that rounding decision? It's
> actually relevant to something I'm working on...

Sorry, it's a real instruction but a hypothetical example.

The closest I got to this was back in the 1980s when I was working on a modelling package called Javelin
and I had to write the functions that computed bond prices and yields. The securities association published
a pamphlet with the algorithms and examples, and needless to say my code wasn't done until it got all the
examples exactly correct. Some of the calculations were rather odd like the ones that decreed that a year
has 360 days.

--
Regards,
John Levine, johnl@taugh.com, Primary Perpetrator of "The Internet for Dummies",
Please consider the environment before reading this e-mail. https://jl.ly
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411148 is a reply to message #411074] Wed, 22 September 2021 15:00 Go to previous messageGo to next message
cross is currently offline  cross
Messages: 8
Registered: May 2013
Karma: 0
Junior Member
In article <20210918155210.02c1c46cfbb0456d26a4ee94@eircom.net>,
Ahem A Rivet's Shot <steveo@eircom.net> wrote:
> On Sat, 18 Sep 2021 00:49:00 -0600
> Grant Taylor <gtaylor@tnetconsulting.net> wrote:
>> On 9/18/21 12:27 AM, Ahem A Rivet's Shot wrote:
>>> I suppose the real question is why not recompile them to take
>>> advantage of the newer hardware. I know during Y2K work that a lot of
>>> instances of lost source code came to light, are people still running
>>> binaries for which there is no source ?
>>
>> Why recompile something just for the sake of recompiling it?
>>
>> If it's working just fine and is exhibiting no symptoms, why mess with it?
>
> Yeah I get it, you might be depending on an old undocumented
> compiler bug or you might fall foul of a new one so why risk the new shiny
> compiler that might get 10% better performance and might break the
> application.

By that logic, one should never upgrade anything if it can
be avoided. An operating system upgrade in particular would
be terribly fraught.

It strikes me how much process we've built predicated on the
presumed difficulty of testing and qualifying software for
production use.

- Dan C.
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411150 is a reply to message #411148] Wed, 22 September 2021 17:54 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Anonymous
Karma:
Originally posted by: J. Clarke

On Wed, 22 Sep 2021 19:00:53 -0000 (UTC),
cross@spitfire.i.gajendra.net (Dan Cross) wrote:

> In article <20210918155210.02c1c46cfbb0456d26a4ee94@eircom.net>,
> Ahem A Rivet's Shot <steveo@eircom.net> wrote:
>> On Sat, 18 Sep 2021 00:49:00 -0600
>> Grant Taylor <gtaylor@tnetconsulting.net> wrote:
>>> On 9/18/21 12:27 AM, Ahem A Rivet's Shot wrote:
>>>> I suppose the real question is why not recompile them to take
>>>> advantage of the newer hardware. I know during Y2K work that a lot of
>>>> instances of lost source code came to light, are people still running
>>>> binaries for which there is no source ?
>>>
>>> Why recompile something just for the sake of recompiling it?
>>>
>>> If it's working just fine and is exhibiting no symptoms, why mess with it?
>>
>> Yeah I get it, you might be depending on an old undocumented
>> compiler bug or you might fall foul of a new one so why risk the new shiny
>> compiler that might get 10% better performance and might break the
>> application.
>
> By that logic, one should never upgrade anything if it can
> be avoided. An operating system upgrade in particular would
> be terribly fraught.
>
> It strikes me how much process we've built predicated on the
> presumed difficulty of testing and qualifying software for
> production use.

Nothing "presumed" about it.
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411153 is a reply to message #411148] Wed, 22 September 2021 21:15 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Dan Espen is currently offline  Dan Espen
Messages: 3748
Registered: January 2012
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Senior Member
cross@spitfire.i.gajendra.net (Dan Cross) writes:

> In article <20210918155210.02c1c46cfbb0456d26a4ee94@eircom.net>,
> Ahem A Rivet's Shot <steveo@eircom.net> wrote:
>> On Sat, 18 Sep 2021 00:49:00 -0600
>> Grant Taylor <gtaylor@tnetconsulting.net> wrote:
>>> On 9/18/21 12:27 AM, Ahem A Rivet's Shot wrote:
>>>> I suppose the real question is why not recompile them to take
>>>> advantage of the newer hardware. I know during Y2K work that a lot of
>>>> instances of lost source code came to light, are people still running
>>>> binaries for which there is no source ?
>>>
>>> Why recompile something just for the sake of recompiling it?
>>>
>>> If it's working just fine and is exhibiting no symptoms, why mess with it?
>>
>> Yeah I get it, you might be depending on an old undocumented
>> compiler bug or you might fall foul of a new one so why risk the new shiny
>> compiler that might get 10% better performance and might break the
>> application.
>
> By that logic, one should never upgrade anything if it can
> be avoided. An operating system upgrade in particular would
> be terribly fraught.
>
> It strikes me how much process we've built predicated on the
> presumed difficulty of testing and qualifying software for
> production use.

You only update software when the benefit justifies the cost.

--
Dan Espen
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411156 is a reply to message #411153] Wed, 22 September 2021 22:34 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Anonymous
Karma:
Originally posted by: J. Clarke

On Wed, 22 Sep 2021 21:15:07 -0400, Dan Espen <dan1espen@gmail.com>
wrote:

> cross@spitfire.i.gajendra.net (Dan Cross) writes:
>
>> In article <20210918155210.02c1c46cfbb0456d26a4ee94@eircom.net>,
>> Ahem A Rivet's Shot <steveo@eircom.net> wrote:
>>> On Sat, 18 Sep 2021 00:49:00 -0600
>>> Grant Taylor <gtaylor@tnetconsulting.net> wrote:
>>>> On 9/18/21 12:27 AM, Ahem A Rivet's Shot wrote:
>>>> > I suppose the real question is why not recompile them to take
>>>> > advantage of the newer hardware. I know during Y2K work that a lot of
>>>> > instances of lost source code came to light, are people still running
>>>> > binaries for which there is no source ?
>>>>
>>>> Why recompile something just for the sake of recompiling it?
>>>>
>>>> If it's working just fine and is exhibiting no symptoms, why mess with it?
>>>
>>> Yeah I get it, you might be depending on an old undocumented
>>> compiler bug or you might fall foul of a new one so why risk the new shiny
>>> compiler that might get 10% better performance and might break the
>>> application.
>>
>> By that logic, one should never upgrade anything if it can
>> be avoided. An operating system upgrade in particular would
>> be terribly fraught.
>>
>> It strikes me how much process we've built predicated on the
>> presumed difficulty of testing and qualifying software for
>> production use.
>
> You only update software when the benefit justifies the cost.

I wish our management understood that. I spend half my time
recovering from "updates".
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411157 is a reply to message #411153] Wed, 22 September 2021 22:51 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Charlie Gibbs is currently offline  Charlie Gibbs
Messages: 5018
Registered: January 2012
Karma: 0
Senior Member
On 2021-09-23, Dan Espen <dan1espen@gmail.com> wrote:

> cross@spitfire.i.gajendra.net (Dan Cross) writes:
>
>> In article <20210918155210.02c1c46cfbb0456d26a4ee94@eircom.net>,
>> Ahem A Rivet's Shot <steveo@eircom.net> wrote:
>>
>>> On Sat, 18 Sep 2021 00:49:00 -0600
>>> Grant Taylor <gtaylor@tnetconsulting.net> wrote:
>>>
>>>> On 9/18/21 12:27 AM, Ahem A Rivet's Shot wrote:
>>>>
>>>> > I suppose the real question is why not recompile them to take
>>>> > advantage of the newer hardware. I know during Y2K work that a lot of
>>>> > instances of lost source code came to light, are people still running
>>>> > binaries for which there is no source ?
>>>>
>>>> Why recompile something just for the sake of recompiling it?
>>>>
>>>> If it's working just fine and is exhibiting no symptoms, why mess with it?
>>>
>>> Yeah I get it, you might be depending on an old undocumented
>>> compiler bug or you might fall foul of a new one so why risk the
>>> new shiny compiler that might get 10% better performance and might
>>> break the application.
>>
>> By that logic, one should never upgrade anything if it can
>> be avoided. An operating system upgrade in particular would
>> be terribly fraught.

s/would be/is/

Especially if you have no mechanism for parallel testing
prior to the cutover.

>> It strikes me how much process we've built predicated on the
>> presumed difficulty of testing and qualifying software for
>> production use.
>
> You only update software when the benefit justifies the cost.

Sadly, people now update software whenever the vendor tells them to
(or does it behind their back).

Last year I heard that a number of 911 sites went down (i.e. no
dial tone) for at least half an hour thanks to a buggy Windows
update that was pushed out to them.

--
/~\ Charlie Gibbs | Life is perverse.
\ / <cgibbs@kltpzyxm.invalid> | It can be beautiful -
X I'm really at ac.dekanfrus | but it won't.
/ \ if you read it the right way. | -- Lily Tomlin
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411158 is a reply to message #411157] Wed, 22 September 2021 23:28 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Anonymous
Karma:
Originally posted by: J. Clarke

On Thu, 23 Sep 2021 02:51:21 GMT, Charlie Gibbs
<cgibbs@kltpzyxm.invalid> wrote:

> On 2021-09-23, Dan Espen <dan1espen@gmail.com> wrote:
>
>> cross@spitfire.i.gajendra.net (Dan Cross) writes:
>>
>>> In article <20210918155210.02c1c46cfbb0456d26a4ee94@eircom.net>,
>>> Ahem A Rivet's Shot <steveo@eircom.net> wrote:
>>>
>>>> On Sat, 18 Sep 2021 00:49:00 -0600
>>>> Grant Taylor <gtaylor@tnetconsulting.net> wrote:
>>>>
>>>> > On 9/18/21 12:27 AM, Ahem A Rivet's Shot wrote:
>>>> >
>>>> >> I suppose the real question is why not recompile them to take
>>>> >> advantage of the newer hardware. I know during Y2K work that a lot of
>>>> >> instances of lost source code came to light, are people still running
>>>> >> binaries for which there is no source ?
>>>> >
>>>> > Why recompile something just for the sake of recompiling it?
>>>> >
>>>> > If it's working just fine and is exhibiting no symptoms, why mess with it?
>>>>
>>>> Yeah I get it, you might be depending on an old undocumented
>>>> compiler bug or you might fall foul of a new one so why risk the
>>>> new shiny compiler that might get 10% better performance and might
>>>> break the application.
>>>
>>> By that logic, one should never upgrade anything if it can
>>> be avoided. An operating system upgrade in particular would
>>> be terribly fraught.
>
> s/would be/is/
>
> Especially if you have no mechanism for parallel testing
> prior to the cutover.
>
>>> It strikes me how much process we've built predicated on the
>>> presumed difficulty of testing and qualifying software for
>>> production use.
>>
>> You only update software when the benefit justifies the cost.
>
> Sadly, people now update software whenever the vendor tells them to
> (or does it behind their back).
>
> Last year I heard that a number of 911 sites went down (i.e. no
> dial tone) for at least half an hour thanks to a buggy Windows
> update that was pushed out to them.

Push updates should be a criminal offense.
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411165 is a reply to message #411158] Thu, 23 September 2021 10:00 Go to previous messageGo to next message
scott is currently offline  scott
Messages: 3930
Registered: February 2012
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Senior Member
J. Clarke <jclarke.873638@gmail.com> writes:
> On Thu, 23 Sep 2021 02:51:21 GMT, Charlie Gibbs
> <cgibbs@kltpzyxm.invalid> wrote:

>>
>> Last year I heard that a number of 911 sites went down (i.e. no
>> dial tone) for at least half an hour thanks to a buggy Windows
>> update that was pushed out to them.
>
> Push updates should be a criminal offense.

Running critical infrastructure on windows should be a criminal offense.
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411166 is a reply to message #411157] Thu, 23 September 2021 10:32 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Peter Flass is currently offline  Peter Flass
Messages: 7956
Registered: December 2011
Karma: 0
Senior Member
Charlie Gibbs <cgibbs@kltpzyxm.invalid> wrote:
> On 2021-09-23, Dan Espen <dan1espen@gmail.com> wrote:
>
>> cross@spitfire.i.gajendra.net (Dan Cross) writes:
>>
>>> In article <20210918155210.02c1c46cfbb0456d26a4ee94@eircom.net>,
>>> Ahem A Rivet's Shot <steveo@eircom.net> wrote:
>>>
>>>> On Sat, 18 Sep 2021 00:49:00 -0600
>>>> Grant Taylor <gtaylor@tnetconsulting.net> wrote:
>>>>
>>>> > On 9/18/21 12:27 AM, Ahem A Rivet's Shot wrote:
>>>> >
>>>> >> I suppose the real question is why not recompile them to take
>>>> >> advantage of the newer hardware. I know during Y2K work that a lot of
>>>> >> instances of lost source code came to light, are people still running
>>>> >> binaries for which there is no source ?
>>>> >
>>>> > Why recompile something just for the sake of recompiling it?
>>>> >
>>>> > If it's working just fine and is exhibiting no symptoms, why mess with it?
>>>>
>>>> Yeah I get it, you might be depending on an old undocumented
>>>> compiler bug or you might fall foul of a new one so why risk the
>>>> new shiny compiler that might get 10% better performance and might
>>>> break the application.
>>>
>>> By that logic, one should never upgrade anything if it can
>>> be avoided. An operating system upgrade in particular would
>>> be terribly fraught.
>
> s/would be/is/
>
> Especially if you have no mechanism for parallel testing
> prior to the cutover.
>
>>> It strikes me how much process we've built predicated on the
>>> presumed difficulty of testing and qualifying software for
>>> production use.
>>
>> You only update software when the benefit justifies the cost.
>
> Sadly, people now update software whenever the vendor tells them to
> (or does it behind their back).
>
> Last year I heard that a number of 911 sites went down (i.e. no
> dial tone) for at least half an hour thanks to a buggy Windows
> update that was pushed out to them.
>

I hate to say that’s what they get for using windows, but…

--
Pete
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411168 is a reply to message #411166] Thu, 23 September 2021 10:52 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Dan Espen is currently offline  Dan Espen
Messages: 3748
Registered: January 2012
Karma: 0
Senior Member
Peter Flass <peter_flass@yahoo.com> writes:

> Charlie Gibbs <cgibbs@kltpzyxm.invalid> wrote:
>> On 2021-09-23, Dan Espen <dan1espen@gmail.com> wrote:
>>
>>> cross@spitfire.i.gajendra.net (Dan Cross) writes:
>>>
>>>> In article <20210918155210.02c1c46cfbb0456d26a4ee94@eircom.net>,
>>>> Ahem A Rivet's Shot <steveo@eircom.net> wrote:
>>>>
>>>> > On Sat, 18 Sep 2021 00:49:00 -0600
>>>> > Grant Taylor <gtaylor@tnetconsulting.net> wrote:
>>>> >
>>>> >> On 9/18/21 12:27 AM, Ahem A Rivet's Shot wrote:
>>>> >>
>>>> >>> I suppose the real question is why not recompile them to take
>>>> >>> advantage of the newer hardware. I know during Y2K work that a lot of
>>>> >>> instances of lost source code came to light, are people still running
>>>> >>> binaries for which there is no source ?
>>>> >>
>>>> >> Why recompile something just for the sake of recompiling it?
>>>> >>
>>>> >> If it's working just fine and is exhibiting no symptoms, why mess with it?
>>>> >
>>>> > Yeah I get it, you might be depending on an old undocumented
>>>> > compiler bug or you might fall foul of a new one so why risk the
>>>> > new shiny compiler that might get 10% better performance and might
>>>> > break the application.
>>>>
>>>> By that logic, one should never upgrade anything if it can
>>>> be avoided. An operating system upgrade in particular would
>>>> be terribly fraught.
>>
>> s/would be/is/
>>
>> Especially if you have no mechanism for parallel testing
>> prior to the cutover.
>>
>>>> It strikes me how much process we've built predicated on the
>>>> presumed difficulty of testing and qualifying software for
>>>> production use.
>>>
>>> You only update software when the benefit justifies the cost.
>>
>> Sadly, people now update software whenever the vendor tells them to
>> (or does it behind their back).
>>
>> Last year I heard that a number of 911 sites went down (i.e. no
>> dial tone) for at least half an hour thanks to a buggy Windows
>> update that was pushed out to them.
>
> I hate to say that’s what they get for using windows, but…

All these stories about companies paying ransoms.
Seldom do they place the blame directly on Windows.

Too be fair, poor backup and recovery probably plays a role too.

--
Dan Espen
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411171 is a reply to message #411168] Thu, 23 September 2021 13:01 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Peter Flass is currently offline  Peter Flass
Messages: 7956
Registered: December 2011
Karma: 0
Senior Member
Dan Espen <dan1espen@gmail.com> wrote:
> Peter Flass <peter_flass@yahoo.com> writes:
>
>> Charlie Gibbs <cgibbs@kltpzyxm.invalid> wrote:
>>> On 2021-09-23, Dan Espen <dan1espen@gmail.com> wrote:
>>>
>>>> cross@spitfire.i.gajendra.net (Dan Cross) writes:
>>>>
>>>> > In article <20210918155210.02c1c46cfbb0456d26a4ee94@eircom.net>,
>>>> > Ahem A Rivet's Shot <steveo@eircom.net> wrote:
>>>> >
>>>> >> On Sat, 18 Sep 2021 00:49:00 -0600
>>>> >> Grant Taylor <gtaylor@tnetconsulting.net> wrote:
>>>> >>
>>>> >>> On 9/18/21 12:27 AM, Ahem A Rivet's Shot wrote:
>>>> >>>
>>>> >>>> I suppose the real question is why not recompile them to take
>>>> >>>> advantage of the newer hardware. I know during Y2K work that a lot of
>>>> >>>> instances of lost source code came to light, are people still running
>>>> >>>> binaries for which there is no source ?
>>>> >>>
>>>> >>> Why recompile something just for the sake of recompiling it?
>>>> >>>
>>>> >>> If it's working just fine and is exhibiting no symptoms, why mess with it?
>>>> >>
>>>> >> Yeah I get it, you might be depending on an old undocumented
>>>> >> compiler bug or you might fall foul of a new one so why risk the
>>>> >> new shiny compiler that might get 10% better performance and might
>>>> >> break the application.
>>>> >
>>>> > By that logic, one should never upgrade anything if it can
>>>> > be avoided. An operating system upgrade in particular would
>>>> > be terribly fraught.
>>>
>>> s/would be/is/
>>>
>>> Especially if you have no mechanism for parallel testing
>>> prior to the cutover.
>>>
>>>> > It strikes me how much process we've built predicated on the
>>>> > presumed difficulty of testing and qualifying software for
>>>> > production use.
>>>>
>>>> You only update software when the benefit justifies the cost.
>>>
>>> Sadly, people now update software whenever the vendor tells them to
>>> (or does it behind their back).
>>>
>>> Last year I heard that a number of 911 sites went down (i.e. no
>>> dial tone) for at least half an hour thanks to a buggy Windows
>>> update that was pushed out to them.
>>
>> I hate to say that’s what they get for using windows, but…
>
> All these stories about companies paying ransoms.
> Seldom do they place the blame directly on Windows.
>
> Too be fair, poor backup and recovery probably plays a role too.
>

I was going to say that windows is just a bigger target than Linux, but
Linux is used extensively in servers and mission-critical situations, and
you seldom hear about a successful attack targeting Linux. You’re right
about poor backup software and procedures.

Someone recently posted here about ransomware that just lay low and
corrupted backups for a while before it struck, but don’t good systems
checksum the backups and verify a good one? Duplicity does that, and also
does a test restore periodically. I have had occasion to restore some files
a few times, and I’m grateful to have it, although I also do some of my own
backups.

I did prefer the system I had previously, whose name I have forgotten, that
had a better UI, but they dropped support for individual users in favor of
corporate licenses.

--
Pete
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411172 is a reply to message #411171] Thu, 23 September 2021 13:05 Go to previous messageGo to next message
scott is currently offline  scott
Messages: 3930
Registered: February 2012
Karma: 0
Senior Member
Peter Flass <peter_flass@yahoo.com> writes:
> Dan Espen <dan1espen@gmail.com> wrote:
>> Peter Flass <peter_flass@yahoo.com> writes:

>>
>> Too be fair, poor backup and recovery probably plays a role too.
>>
>
> I was going to say that windows is just a bigger target than Linux, but
> Linux is used extensively in servers and mission-critical situations, and
> you seldom hear about a successful attack targeting Linux. You’re right
> about poor backup software and procedures.

Fundamentally, it devolves to Microsoft's choice to use HTML
in email and to allow executable content in mail, to forgo
any form of user security, et cetera.

Simple text is far safer, and forcing someone to manually cut & paste
URLs from a text mail (where the URL is unobfuscatable) to
a sandboxed browser would have been a far more secure paradigm.
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411173 is a reply to message #411171] Thu, 23 September 2021 13:12 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Dan Espen is currently offline  Dan Espen
Messages: 3748
Registered: January 2012
Karma: 0
Senior Member
Peter Flass <peter_flass@yahoo.com> writes:

> Dan Espen <dan1espen@gmail.com> wrote:
>> Peter Flass <peter_flass@yahoo.com> writes:
>>
>>> Charlie Gibbs <cgibbs@kltpzyxm.invalid> wrote:
>>>> On 2021-09-23, Dan Espen <dan1espen@gmail.com> wrote:
>>>>
>>>> > cross@spitfire.i.gajendra.net (Dan Cross) writes:
>>>> >
>>>> >> In article <20210918155210.02c1c46cfbb0456d26a4ee94@eircom.net>,
>>>> >> Ahem A Rivet's Shot <steveo@eircom.net> wrote:
>>>> >>
>>>> >>> On Sat, 18 Sep 2021 00:49:00 -0600
>>>> >>> Grant Taylor <gtaylor@tnetconsulting.net> wrote:
>>>> >>>
>>>> >>>> On 9/18/21 12:27 AM, Ahem A Rivet's Shot wrote:
>>>> >>>>
>>>> >>>>> I suppose the real question is why not recompile them to take
>>>> >>>>> advantage of the newer hardware. I know during Y2K work that a lot of
>>>> >>>>> instances of lost source code came to light, are people still running
>>>> >>>>> binaries for which there is no source ?
>>>> >>>>
>>>> >>>> Why recompile something just for the sake of recompiling it?
>>>> >>>>
>>>> >>>> If it's working just fine and is exhibiting no symptoms, why mess with it?
>>>> >>>
>>>> >>> Yeah I get it, you might be depending on an old undocumented
>>>> >>> compiler bug or you might fall foul of a new one so why risk the
>>>> >>> new shiny compiler that might get 10% better performance and might
>>>> >>> break the application.
>>>> >>
>>>> >> By that logic, one should never upgrade anything if it can
>>>> >> be avoided. An operating system upgrade in particular would
>>>> >> be terribly fraught.
>>>>
>>>> s/would be/is/
>>>>
>>>> Especially if you have no mechanism for parallel testing
>>>> prior to the cutover.
>>>>
>>>> >> It strikes me how much process we've built predicated on the
>>>> >> presumed difficulty of testing and qualifying software for
>>>> >> production use.
>>>> >
>>>> > You only update software when the benefit justifies the cost.
>>>>
>>>> Sadly, people now update software whenever the vendor tells them to
>>>> (or does it behind their back).
>>>>
>>>> Last year I heard that a number of 911 sites went down (i.e. no
>>>> dial tone) for at least half an hour thanks to a buggy Windows
>>>> update that was pushed out to them.
>>>
>>> I hate to say that’s what they get for using windows, but…
>>
>> All these stories about companies paying ransoms.
>> Seldom do they place the blame directly on Windows.
>>
>> Too be fair, poor backup and recovery probably plays a role too.
>>
>
> I was going to say that windows is just a bigger target than Linux, but
> Linux is used extensively in servers and mission-critical situations, and
> you seldom hear about a successful attack targeting Linux. You’re right
> about poor backup software and procedures.
>
> Someone recently posted here about ransomware that just lay low and
> corrupted backups for a while before it struck, but don’t good systems
> checksum the backups and verify a good one? Duplicity does that, and also
> does a test restore periodically. I have had occasion to restore some files
> a few times, and I’m grateful to have it, although I also do some of my own
> backups.

I'm not and never have been a professional system admin.
It seems to me the system doing backups should only be connected to the
disk farm. That would make corrupting backups an unlikely event.

> I did prefer the system I had previously, whose name I have forgotten, that
> had a better UI, but they dropped support for individual users in favor of
> corporate licenses.

Backup systems? For my home system cron driven rsync with periodic
changes to the backup USB sticks. Couldn't be much simpler.
Rsync just creates another copy, getting to the backup is just a matter
of copying.

--
Dan Espen
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411174 is a reply to message #411171] Thu, 23 September 2021 13:40 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Andreas Kohlbach is currently offline  Andreas Kohlbach
Messages: 1408
Registered: December 2011
Karma: 0
Senior Member
On Thu, 23 Sep 2021 10:01:37 -0700, Peter Flass wrote:
>
> Dan Espen <dan1espen@gmail.com> wrote:
>>
>> All these stories about companies paying ransoms.
>> Seldom do they place the blame directly on Windows.
>>
>> Too be fair, poor backup and recovery probably plays a role too.
>>
>
> I was going to say that windows is just a bigger target than Linux, but
> Linux is used extensively in servers and mission-critical situations, and
> you seldom hear about a successful attack targeting Linux. You’re right
> about poor backup software and procedures.

While it's true that Linux is extensively used on servers it needs an
exploit targeting the server (PHP exploit or something).

But Linux Desktop installations are AFAIK rarely attacked.

Anybody who runs Linux on a desktop for their daily work (email, social
media, watching pr0n) are less likely to find their computer compromised
than their Windows counterparts.

[...]
--
Andreas
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411176 is a reply to message #411165] Thu, 23 September 2021 14:31 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Charlie Gibbs is currently offline  Charlie Gibbs
Messages: 5018
Registered: January 2012
Karma: 0
Senior Member
On 2021-09-23, Scott Lurndal <scott@slp53.sl.home> wrote:

> J. Clarke <jclarke.873638@gmail.com> writes:
>
>> On Thu, 23 Sep 2021 02:51:21 GMT, Charlie Gibbs
>> <cgibbs@kltpzyxm.invalid> wrote:
>>
>>> Last year I heard that a number of 911 sites went down (i.e. no
>>> dial tone) for at least half an hour thanks to a buggy Windows
>>> update that was pushed out to them.
>>
>> Push updates should be a criminal offense.

I'm amazed that it doesn't seem to occur to anyone what a
huge security hole this represents.

> Running critical infrastructure on windows should be a criminal offense.

Hear, hear!

--
/~\ Charlie Gibbs | Life is perverse.
\ / <cgibbs@kltpzyxm.invalid> | It can be beautiful -
X I'm really at ac.dekanfrus | but it won't.
/ \ if you read it the right way. | -- Lily Tomlin
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411177 is a reply to message #411172] Thu, 23 September 2021 14:42 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Charlie Gibbs is currently offline  Charlie Gibbs
Messages: 5018
Registered: January 2012
Karma: 0
Senior Member
On 2021-09-23, Scott Lurndal <scott@slp53.sl.home> wrote:

> Peter Flass <peter_flass@yahoo.com> writes:
>
>> Dan Espen <dan1espen@gmail.com> wrote:
>>
>>> Too be fair, poor backup and recovery probably plays a role too.
>>
>> I was going to say that windows is just a bigger target than Linux, but
>> Linux is used extensively in servers and mission-critical situations, and
>> you seldom hear about a successful attack targeting Linux. You’re right
>> about poor backup software and procedures.
>
> Fundamentally, it devolves to Microsoft's choice to use HTML
> in email and to allow executable content in mail, to forgo
> any form of user security, et cetera.
>
> Simple text is far safer, and forcing someone to manually cut & paste
> URLs from a text mail (where the URL is unobfuscatable) to
> a sandboxed browser would have been a far more secure paradigm.

Yes, but far less convenient. And as every marketroid knows,
convenience trumps everything: cost, efficiency, security, even safety.

Wait, let me amend that: _perceived_ convenience. How many times have
you watched someone pointing and clicking and pointing and clicking
and dragging and dropping and... oops, my mouse finger slipped - where
did that file get dropped? All this to do something we could do with
a dozen keystrokes. And still they'll proudly proclaim how _convenient_
it is. Furrfu.

--
/~\ Charlie Gibbs | Life is perverse.
\ / <cgibbs@kltpzyxm.invalid> | It can be beautiful -
X I'm really at ac.dekanfrus | but it won't.
/ \ if you read it the right way. | -- Lily Tomlin
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411178 is a reply to message #411173] Thu, 23 September 2021 14:41 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Ahem A Rivet's Shot is currently offline  Ahem A Rivet's Shot
Messages: 4442
Registered: January 2012
Karma: 0
Senior Member
On Thu, 23 Sep 2021 13:12:17 -0400
Dan Espen <dan1espen@gmail.com> wrote:

> I'm not and never have been a professional system admin.
> It seems to me the system doing backups should only be connected to the
> disk farm. That would make corrupting backups an unlikely event.

That doesn't work! Getting good backups of files in use requires
interaction with the application, usually a minimum of flushing application
state to disc, pausing the application and taking a snapshot so that the
application can resume running, then backup the snapshot not the active
files.

One common technique for backing up PCs is to mount the backup
drive from the NAS and write a backup to it. This makes the ransomware
author's job very easy indeed.

--
Steve O'Hara-Smith | Directable Mirror Arrays
C:\>WIN | A better way to focus the sun
The computer obeys and wins. | licences available see
You lose and Bill collects. | http://www.sohara.org/
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411186 is a reply to message #411176] Thu, 23 September 2021 20:47 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Anonymous
Karma:
Originally posted by: J. Clarke

On Thu, 23 Sep 2021 18:31:34 GMT, Charlie Gibbs
<cgibbs@kltpzyxm.invalid> wrote:

> On 2021-09-23, Scott Lurndal <scott@slp53.sl.home> wrote:
>
>> J. Clarke <jclarke.873638@gmail.com> writes:
>>
>>> On Thu, 23 Sep 2021 02:51:21 GMT, Charlie Gibbs
>>> <cgibbs@kltpzyxm.invalid> wrote:
>>>
>>>> Last year I heard that a number of 911 sites went down (i.e. no
>>>> dial tone) for at least half an hour thanks to a buggy Windows
>>>> update that was pushed out to them.
>>>
>>> Push updates should be a criminal offense.
>
> I'm amazed that it doesn't seem to occur to anyone what a
> huge security hole this represents.

The story is that those updates are essential to close security holes.
It's amazing the bullshit that people believe about security.

>> Running critical infrastructure on windows should be a criminal offense.
>
> Hear, hear!

That ship, however, has sailed.
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411187 is a reply to message #411177] Thu, 23 September 2021 20:51 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Anonymous
Karma:
Originally posted by: J. Clarke

On Thu, 23 Sep 2021 18:42:11 GMT, Charlie Gibbs
<cgibbs@kltpzyxm.invalid> wrote:

> On 2021-09-23, Scott Lurndal <scott@slp53.sl.home> wrote:
>
>> Peter Flass <peter_flass@yahoo.com> writes:
>>
>>> Dan Espen <dan1espen@gmail.com> wrote:
>>>
>>>> Too be fair, poor backup and recovery probably plays a role too.
>>>
>>> I was going to say that windows is just a bigger target than Linux, but
>>> Linux is used extensively in servers and mission-critical situations, and
>>> you seldom hear about a successful attack targeting Linux. You’re right
>>> about poor backup software and procedures.
>>
>> Fundamentally, it devolves to Microsoft's choice to use HTML
>> in email and to allow executable content in mail, to forgo
>> any form of user security, et cetera.
>>
>> Simple text is far safer, and forcing someone to manually cut & paste
>> URLs from a text mail (where the URL is unobfuscatable) to
>> a sandboxed browser would have been a far more secure paradigm.
>
> Yes, but far less convenient. And as every marketroid knows,
> convenience trumps everything: cost, efficiency, security, even safety.
>
> Wait, let me amend that: _perceived_ convenience. How many times have
> you watched someone pointing and clicking and pointing and clicking
> and dragging and dropping and... oops, my mouse finger slipped - where
> did that file get dropped?

That particular one is a _stupid_ design decision. Accidentally hit
the button at the wrong moment and you can drag a whole heirarchy into
obscurity. And the really annoying thing is that you can drag it out
of a folder to which you do not have the permissions to drag it
_back_.

> All this to do something we could do with
> a dozen keystrokes.

If the filenames and paths have fewer than a dozen letters.

> And still they'll proudly proclaim how _convenient_
> it is. Furrfu.
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411188 is a reply to message #410734] Thu, 23 September 2021 21:31 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Anonymous
Karma:
Originally posted by: Carlos E. R.

On 05/09/2021 18.28, Grant Taylor wrote:
> On 9/5/21 3:55 AM, Jason Evans wrote:
>> First of all, what is "real work"? Let's say that you're a
>> Linux/Unix/BSD system administrator who spends 90% of his day on the
>> command line. What is the oldest computer that he could get by with to
>> do his job?
>
> The problem is the remaining 10%.  (I'm re-using your numbers.)
>
> IMM/RSA/iLO/LOM/iDRAC/etc consoles that are inherently GUI which are
> invaluable when recovering systems during outages.
>
> Don't forget that email clients /almost/ *need* to be GUI to display
> more than simple text ~> attachments.  --  We can't forget the venerable
> Power Point slides that we need to look at before the next meeting.

I use a pure text mail client a lot of the time.


--
Cheers,
Carlos E.R.
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411189 is a reply to message #410715] Thu, 23 September 2021 21:41 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Anonymous
Karma:
Originally posted by: Carlos E. R.

On 05/09/2021 11.55, Jason Evans wrote:
> I know this is an odd question, so let me explain what I'm thinking.
>
> First of all, what is "real work"? Let's say that you're a Linux/Unix/BSD
> system administrator who spends 90% of his day on the command line. What is
> the oldest computer that he could get by with to do his job?

Voyager 1, launched 1977, still running. It is doing the job for which
it was programmed.

What about the navigation computers for all the nuclear missiles
built... when? 60's?

--
Cheers,
Carlos E.R.
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411197 is a reply to message #411186] Fri, 24 September 2021 02:10 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Mike Spencer is currently offline  Mike Spencer
Messages: 944
Registered: January 2012
Karma: 0
Senior Member
J. Clarke <jclarke.873638@gmail.com> writes:

> On Thu, 23 Sep 2021 18:31:34 GMT, Charlie Gibbs
> <cgibbs@kltpzyxm.invalid> wrote:
>
>> On 2021-09-23, Scott Lurndal <scott@slp53.sl.home> wrote:
>>
>>> Running critical infrastructure on windows should be a criminal offense.
>>
>> Hear, hear!
>
> That ship, however, has sailed.

AIUI, the US Navy now navigates with Windoes, has for many years. And
in addition has dropped astral navigation skills as a requirement for
officers. Furrfu.


--
Mike Spencer Nova Scotia, Canada
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411208 is a reply to message #411186] Fri, 24 September 2021 13:16 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Charlie Gibbs is currently offline  Charlie Gibbs
Messages: 5018
Registered: January 2012
Karma: 0
Senior Member
On 2021-09-24, J Clarke <jclarke.873638@gmail.com> wrote:

> On Thu, 23 Sep 2021 18:31:34 GMT, Charlie Gibbs
> <cgibbs@kltpzyxm.invalid> wrote:
>
>> On 2021-09-23, Scott Lurndal <scott@slp53.sl.home> wrote:
>>
>>> J. Clarke <jclarke.873638@gmail.com> writes:
>>>
>>>> On Thu, 23 Sep 2021 02:51:21 GMT, Charlie Gibbs
>>>> <cgibbs@kltpzyxm.invalid> wrote:
>>>>
>>>> > Last year I heard that a number of 911 sites went down (i.e. no
>>>> > dial tone) for at least half an hour thanks to a buggy Windows
>>>> > update that was pushed out to them.
>>>>
>>>> Push updates should be a criminal offense.
>>
>> I'm amazed that it doesn't seem to occur to anyone what a
>> huge security hole this represents.
>
> The story is that those updates are essential to close security holes.
> It's amazing the bullshit that people believe about security.

For many people, security is all about giving yourself the warm fuzzies;
whether the measures are effective is irrelevant. A PPOE once implemented
a security policy requiring all after-hours access to be done through one
door (at the opposite end of the building from the computer department,
of course). So I'd have to walk the length of the building on the outside,
let myself in through the designated door, then walk back the length of
the building on the inside. There were no locked doors internally -
once you were inside you had the run of the building - so this measure
accomplished exactly nothing.

>>> Running critical infrastructure on windows should be a criminal offense.
>>
>> Hear, hear!
>
> That ship, however, has sailed.

In the case of the Australian navy, that ship was left dead in the water
when Windows crashed.

--
/~\ Charlie Gibbs | Life is perverse.
\ / <cgibbs@kltpzyxm.invalid> | It can be beautiful -
X I'm really at ac.dekanfrus | but it won't.
/ \ if you read it the right way. | -- Lily Tomlin
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411212 is a reply to message #411150] Fri, 24 September 2021 15:13 Go to previous messageGo to next message
cross is currently offline  cross
Messages: 8
Registered: May 2013
Karma: 0
Junior Member
In article <8c9nkgl0159m3f0rvhpma1cdqg5b897qo9@4ax.com>,
J. Clarke <jclarke.873638@gmail.com> wrote:
> On Wed, 22 Sep 2021 19:00:53 -0000 (UTC),
> cross@spitfire.i.gajendra.net (Dan Cross) wrote:
>>> Yeah I get it, you might be depending on an old undocumented
>>> compiler bug or you might fall foul of a new one so why risk the new shiny
>>> compiler that might get 10% better performance and might break the
>>> application.
>>
>> By that logic, one should never upgrade anything if it can
>> be avoided. An operating system upgrade in particular would
>> be terribly fraught.
>>
>> It strikes me how much process we've built predicated on the
>> presumed difficulty of testing and qualifying software for
>> production use.
>
> Nothing "presumed" about it.

Sure it is. The level of difficulty depends entirely on
your processes and practices and how robust your test and
staging infrastructure is. Some places do it very well.
Others, not so much.

- Dan C.
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411213 is a reply to message #411153] Fri, 24 September 2021 15:15 Go to previous messageGo to next message
cross is currently offline  cross
Messages: 8
Registered: May 2013
Karma: 0
Junior Member
In article <sigker$kfe$1@dont-email.me>,
Dan Espen <dan1espen@gmail.com> wrote:
> cross@spitfire.i.gajendra.net (Dan Cross) writes:
>> By that logic, one should never upgrade anything if it can
>> be avoided. An operating system upgrade in particular would
>> be terribly fraught.
>>
>> It strikes me how much process we've built predicated on the
>> presumed difficulty of testing and qualifying software for
>> production use.
>
> You only update software when the benefit justifies the cost.

....or when external factors compel you to do so. But
that may be a reflection of those external factors
forcing an unbearable cost that implicitly justifies
the upgrade.

And recall, the original discussion isn't necessarily on
updating software, but on recompiling that software.

Of course, as the dividing line between "hardware" and
"software" grows ever more vague, so does the definition
of what it means to "update software" anyway.

- Dan C.
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411219 is a reply to message #410715] Fri, 24 September 2021 18:25 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Anonymous
Karma:
Originally posted by: maus

On 2021-09-24, Andreas Kohlbach <ank@spamfence.net> wrote:
> On 24 Sep 2021 03:10:29 -0300, Mike Spencer wrote:
>>
>> J. Clarke <jclarke.873638@gmail.com> writes:
>>
>>> That ship, however, has sailed.
>>
>> AIUI, the US Navy now navigates with Windoes, has for many years. And
>> in addition has dropped astral navigation skills as a requirement for
>> officers. Furrfu.
>
> The world is way too computerized when it comes to security. If (or may
> be just a question if "when") China goes to war against NATO, first thing
> they do is to take out GPS (shooting some satellites down) or somehow
> jamming the signal to deny access. Suppose the Navy and Army are blind
> then. And without astral navigation skills ships might not even find the
> way home.

After an atomic war, there will be no homes to go to.
--
greymausg@mail.com
Down the wrong mousehole.
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411220 is a reply to message #411171] Fri, 24 September 2021 18:28 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Anonymous
Karma:
Originally posted by: maus

On 2021-09-23, Peter Flass <peter_flass@yahoo.com> wrote:
> Dan Espen <dan1espen@gmail.com> wrote:
>> Peter Flass <peter_flass@yahoo.com> writes:
>>
>>> Charlie Gibbs <cgibbs@kltpzyxm.invalid> wrote:
>>>> On 2021-09-23, Dan Espen <dan1espen@gmail.com> wrote:
>>>>
>>>> > cross@spitfire.i.gajendra.net (Dan Cross) writes:
>>>> >
>>>> >> In article <20210918155210.02c1c46cfbb0456d26a4ee94@eircom.net>,
>>>> >> Ahem A Rivet's Shot <steveo@eircom.net> wrote:
>>>> >>
> checksum the backups and verify a good one? Duplicity does that, and also
> does a test restore periodically. I have had occasion to restore some files
> a few times, and I’m grateful to have it, although I also do some of my own
> backups.
>
> I did prefer the system I had previously, whose name I have forgotten, that
> had a better UI, but they dropped support for individual users in favor of
> corporate licenses.
>

I occasion get a message demainding money or else. So far, nothing
happens.

--
greymausg@mail.com
Down the wrong mousehole.
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411221 is a reply to message #411212] Fri, 24 September 2021 18:37 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Anonymous
Karma:
Originally posted by: J. Clarke

On Fri, 24 Sep 2021 19:13:06 -0000 (UTC),
cross@spitfire.i.gajendra.net (Dan Cross) wrote:

> In article <8c9nkgl0159m3f0rvhpma1cdqg5b897qo9@4ax.com>,
> J. Clarke <jclarke.873638@gmail.com> wrote:
>> On Wed, 22 Sep 2021 19:00:53 -0000 (UTC),
>> cross@spitfire.i.gajendra.net (Dan Cross) wrote:
>>>> Yeah I get it, you might be depending on an old undocumented
>>>> compiler bug or you might fall foul of a new one so why risk the new shiny
>>>> compiler that might get 10% better performance and might break the
>>>> application.
>>>
>>> By that logic, one should never upgrade anything if it can
>>> be avoided. An operating system upgrade in particular would
>>> be terribly fraught.
>>>
>>> It strikes me how much process we've built predicated on the
>>> presumed difficulty of testing and qualifying software for
>>> production use.
>>
>> Nothing "presumed" about it.
>
> Sure it is. The level of difficulty depends entirely on
> your processes and practices and how robust your test and
> staging infrastructure is. Some places do it very well.
> Others, not so much.

If you feel like robusticizing the "processes and practices and test
and staging infrastructure" for a Fortune 500 financial services
company, I can give you a name to which you can send your sales pitch.
Make it shiny enough and put a big enough hook in it and he may even
bite.
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411223 is a reply to message #411197] Fri, 24 September 2021 18:50 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Anonymous
Karma:
Originally posted by: J. Clarke

On 24 Sep 2021 03:10:29 -0300, Mike Spencer
<mds@bogus.nodomain.nowhere> wrote:

>
> J. Clarke <jclarke.873638@gmail.com> writes:
>
>> On Thu, 23 Sep 2021 18:31:34 GMT, Charlie Gibbs
>> <cgibbs@kltpzyxm.invalid> wrote:
>>
>>> On 2021-09-23, Scott Lurndal <scott@slp53.sl.home> wrote:
>>>
>>>> Running critical infrastructure on windows should be a criminal offense.
>>>
>>> Hear, hear!
>>
>> That ship, however, has sailed.
>
> AIUI, the US Navy now navigates with Windoes, has for many years. And
> in addition has dropped astral navigation skills as a requirement for
> officers. Furrfu.

You do know that a handheld GPS can provide the same information as
celestial nav, with vastly greater precision, do you not? And likely
has accurate charts these days.
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411226 is a reply to message #411208] Fri, 24 September 2021 20:11 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Anonymous
Karma:
Originally posted by: Branimir Maksimovic

Who in sane state of MIND would use WINDOWS for critical missions
and FAULT TAULERANCY :P
(I work for RS military)

--
7-77-777
\|/
---
/|\
On 2021-09-24, Charlie Gibbs <cgibbs@kltpzyxm.invalid> wrote:
> On 2021-09-24, J Clarke <jclarke.873638@gmail.com> wrote:
>
>> On Thu, 23 Sep 2021 18:31:34 GMT, Charlie Gibbs
>> <cgibbs@kltpzyxm.invalid> wrote:
>>
>>> On 2021-09-23, Scott Lurndal <scott@slp53.sl.home> wrote:
>>>
>>>> J. Clarke <jclarke.873638@gmail.com> writes:
>>>>
>>>> > On Thu, 23 Sep 2021 02:51:21 GMT, Charlie Gibbs
>>>> > <cgibbs@kltpzyxm.invalid> wrote:
>>>> >
>>>> >> Last year I heard that a number of 911 sites went down (i.e. no
>>>> >> dial tone) for at least half an hour thanks to a buggy Windows
>>>> >> update that was pushed out to them.
>>>> >
>>>> > Push updates should be a criminal offense.
>>>
>>> I'm amazed that it doesn't seem to occur to anyone what a
>>> huge security hole this represents.
>>
>> The story is that those updates are essential to close security holes.
>> It's amazing the bullshit that people believe about security.
>
> For many people, security is all about giving yourself the warm fuzzies;
> whether the measures are effective is irrelevant. A PPOE once implemented
> a security policy requiring all after-hours access to be done through one
> door (at the opposite end of the building from the computer department,
> of course). So I'd have to walk the length of the building on the outside,
> let myself in through the designated door, then walk back the length of
> the building on the inside. There were no locked doors internally -
> once you were inside you had the run of the building - so this measure
> accomplished exactly nothing.
>
>>>> Running critical infrastructure on windows should be a criminal offense.
>>>
>>> Hear, hear!
>>
>> That ship, however, has sailed.
>
> In the case of the Australian navy, that ship was left dead in the water
> when Windows crashed.
>


--
Evil Sinner!
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411233 is a reply to message #411219] Fri, 24 September 2021 20:36 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Anonymous
Karma:
Originally posted by: Branimir Maksimovic

No electronics, only light bulbs will survive that is why Russians
have lamps in their PLANES.

--
7-77-777
\|/
---
/|\

On 2021-09-24, maus <maus@dmaus.org> wrote:
> On 2021-09-24, Andreas Kohlbach <ank@spamfence.net> wrote:
>> On 24 Sep 2021 03:10:29 -0300, Mike Spencer wrote:
>>>
>>> J. Clarke <jclarke.873638@gmail.com> writes:
>>>
>>>> That ship, however, has sailed.
>>>
>>> AIUI, the US Navy now navigates with Windoes, has for many years. And
>>> in addition has dropped astral navigation skills as a requirement for
>>> officers. Furrfu.
>>
>> The world is way too computerized when it comes to security. If (or may
>> be just a question if "when") China goes to war against NATO, first thing
>> they do is to take out GPS (shooting some satellites down) or somehow
>> jamming the signal to deny access. Suppose the Navy and Army are blind
>> then. And without astral navigation skills ships might not even find the
>> way home.
>
> After an atomic war, there will be no homes to go to.


--
Evil Sinner!
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411234 is a reply to message #411220] Fri, 24 September 2021 20:38 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Anonymous
Karma:
Originally posted by: Branimir Maksimovic

I have learned that NOTHING IS FREE. If you PAY HONESTLY it is cheaper
then to use something virtually free.

--
7-77-777
\|/
---
/|\
On 2021-09-24, maus <maus@dmaus.org> wrote:
> On 2021-09-23, Peter Flass <peter_flass@yahoo.com> wrote:
>> Dan Espen <dan1espen@gmail.com> wrote:
>>> Peter Flass <peter_flass@yahoo.com> writes:
>>>
>>>> Charlie Gibbs <cgibbs@kltpzyxm.invalid> wrote:
>>>> > On 2021-09-23, Dan Espen <dan1espen@gmail.com> wrote:
>>>> >
>>>> >> cross@spitfire.i.gajendra.net (Dan Cross) writes:
>>>> >>
>>>> >>> In article <20210918155210.02c1c46cfbb0456d26a4ee94@eircom.net>,
>>>> >>> Ahem A Rivet's Shot <steveo@eircom.net> wrote:
>>>> >>>
>> checksum the backups and verify a good one? Duplicity does that, and also
>> does a test restore periodically. I have had occasion to restore some files
>> a few times, and I’m grateful to have it, although I also do some of my own
>> backups.
>>
>> I did prefer the system I had previously, whose name I have forgotten, that
>> had a better UI, but they dropped support for individual users in favor of
>> corporate licenses.
>>
>
> I occasion get a message demainding money or else. So far, nothing
> happens.
>


--
Evil Sinner!
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411245 is a reply to message #410715] Sat, 25 September 2021 02:57 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Andreas Kohlbach is currently offline  Andreas Kohlbach
Messages: 1408
Registered: December 2011
Karma: 0
Senior Member
On Fri, 24 Sep 2021 20:23:33 -0500, Dave Garland wrote:
>
> On 9/24/2021 5:50 PM, J. Clarke wrote:
>>>
>>> AIUI, the US Navy now navigates with Windoes, has for many years. And
>>> in addition has dropped astral navigation skills as a requirement for
>>> officers. Furrfu.
>> You do know that a handheld GPS can provide the same information as
>> celestial nav, with vastly greater precision, do you not? And likely
>> has accurate charts these days.
>>
> Works so long as the satellites are still functioning, not turned off,
> not jammed, not spoofed. Remember a few years ago Iran fooled a US
> drone into landing at one of their airfields? Or google "China GPS
> spoofing" for fun and games with ships near to China. Or the 20 ships
> in the Black Sea in 2017 whose location returned as an airport 32km
> inland. I would expect every competent military has tools to deal with
> satnav these days. (You can buy a jammer off AliBaba for as little as
> $200, spoofing probably costs a lot more.)

That goes already back to World War II. In the Battle Of The Beams
<https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_the_Beams> the British tempered
with German location findings for "blind landings". They fooled some
German air planes to land in Britain, believing they landed in Nazi
Germany.

| Thus the beam was seemingly "bent" away from the target. Eventually,
| the beams could be inclined by a controlled amount which enabled the
| British to fool the Germans into dropping their bombs where they
| wanted them. A side effect was that as the German crews had been
| trained to navigate solely by the beams, many crews failed to find
| either the true equi-signal or Germany again. Some Luftwaffe bombers
| even landed at RAF bases, believing they were back in the Reich.

> It's way harder to spoof the stars.

:-)
--
Andreas
Re: What is the oldest computer that could be used today for real work? [message #411247 is a reply to message #411223] Sat, 25 September 2021 03:22 Go to previous messageGo to previous message
Mike Spencer is currently offline  Mike Spencer
Messages: 944
Registered: January 2012
Karma: 0
Senior Member
J. Clarke <jclarke.873638@gmail.com> writes:

> On 24 Sep 2021 03:10:29 -0300, Mike Spencer
> <mds@bogus.nodomain.nowhere> wrote:
>
>> AIUI, the US Navy now navigates with Windoes, has for many years. And
>> in addition has dropped astral navigation skills as a requirement for
>> officers. Furrfu.
>
> You do know that a handheld GPS can provide the same information as
> celestial nav, with vastly greater precision, do you not? And likely
> has accurate charts these days.

Yes, I do know that. But the US Navy operates *war*ships. If the
Navy is ever again confronted with an actual war -- something beyond
sending helicopter gunships or drones after "insurgents" or showing
the flag in the South China Sea -- against a capable opponent,
GPS/satnav is going to be the opponent's early target. Naval mariners
have long had the attitude that they should be prepared to cope when X
fails for almost all values of X.

I once toured a Canadian naval ship and asked about a hand-crank
bolted to a bulkhead in a hold near the bilges. The answer: If you
have a cold ship -- boilers cold, no shore power, nothing operating --
you unbolt the crank, use it to hand-start an antique single-banger
diesel. That generates enough power to start the big 8-cyl diesel
which in turn compresses enough air to start the two really big
16-cyl diesels which then generate enough power to fire up and run
everything else.

--
Mike Spencer Nova Scotia, Canada
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