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The SPC-1 benchmark is cobblers, thunders Oracle veep

Comment The DataCore SPC-1-topping benchmark has attracted attention, with some saying that it is artificial (read cache-centric) and unrealistic as the benchmark is not applicable to today's workloads. Oracle SVP Chuck Hollis told The Register: "The way [DataCore] can get such amazing IOPS on a SPC-1 is that they're using an enormous …
Chris Mellor, 21 Jun 2016
Data centre

What's DriveScale up to? Mix-'n'-match server and disk storage, for starters

Backgrounder DriveScale is a startup that emerged from a three-year stealth effort earlier this year with hardware and software to dynamically present externally connected JBODS to servers as if they were local. The idea is to provide composable server-storage combos for changing Hadoop-type distributed workloads. It is meant to share the …
Chris Mellor, 21 Jun 2016
Intel HPC Orchestrator screenshot

Intel-supported Open HPC stack to land in Q4

Along with its Knights Landing chips landing, Intel has unveiled its first implementation of the Open HPC environment. The Intel HPC Orchestrator is a validated software stack designed to give big iron admins the kind of out-of-the-box support more familiar to the enterprise server customer. It wraps up the Open HPC software …

Fujitsu picks 64-bit ARM for Japan's monster 1,000-PFLOPS super

ISC Fujitsu has signaled it will use 64-bit ARMv8 cores in the whopping exascale supercomputer it's building for Japan's boffins. Back in 2014, the Japanese IT giant was hired by the RIKEN Advanced Institute for Computational Science to construct the Flagship 2020 machine – dubbed the Post-K super because it will succeed Japan's K …
Chris Williams, 20 Jun 2016
Container-ship

Contain yourself – StorageOS is coming

DockerCon StorageOS is a UK-based startup offering simple and automated block storage to stateless containers, giving them state and the means to run databases and other applications that need enterprise-class storage functionality without the concomitant complexity, rigidity and cost. It runs as a container in a Linux system and …
Chris Mellor, 20 Jun 2016

Docker taps unikernel brains to emit OS X, Windows public betas

DockerCon Docker will kick off its DockerCon 2016 conference in Seattle this morning with a bunch of announcements: its OS X and Windows Docker clients will be made publicly available as beta software for anyone to try out; out-of-the-box orchestration is coming to Docker 1.12; and integration with Amazon's AWS and Microsoft's Azure is in …
Chris Williams, 20 Jun 2016
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You've got petabytes of unused storage, says Formation. Er, do we?

Formation Data Systems says there is stranded storage capacity in virtual server environments., The firm says it can locate this in servers and storage across a data centre, pool it, and provision it as a flexible shared storage pool, giving extra storage capacity with no extra hardware purchase. How much? Oh, terabytes or …
Chris Mellor, 20 Jun 2016
50 of your British pounds. Photo by Shutterstock

Start massaging your wallet: DDN buffs up EXAScaler Lustre HPC storage rig

ISC DataDirect Networks' ES14K is claimed to be four times faster than other suppliers' laggardly Lustre kit. The ExaScaler ES14K comes in all-flash and hybrid flash/disk configurations and features: Embedded Intel Enterprise Edition Lustre parallel file system v2.7 Up to 500GB/sec throughput Internal PCIe gen 3 fabric …
Chris Mellor, 20 Jun 2016
Scale Computing boxes with kitty

Scale Computing makes play for Nutanix's entry level market

Storage startup Scale Computing is offering a hyper-converged three-node cluster for less than $25,000, and undercuts Nutanix's Xpress SMB entry-level offering by $500. The company, which is is focussed on the SMB/mid-market, has replaced its entry-level HC1000 with an all-disk HC1100 and a hybrid flash/disk HC1150 featuring …
Chris Mellor, 20 Jun 2016
Sunway TaihuLight that was built for the National Supercomputing Center in Wuxi. Pic courtesy of The Next Platform

Home-cooked tech helps China topple US as top supercomputer user

ISC For the first time since the Top 500 rankings of the most powerful supercomputers in the world was started 23 years ago, the United States is not home to the largest number of machines on the list – and China, after decades of intense investment and engineering, is. Supercomputing is not just an academic or government …

All aboard the PCIe bus for Nvidia's Tesla P100 supercomputer grunt

ISC Nvidia has popped its Tesla P100 accelerator chip onto PCIe cards for bog-standard server nodes tasked with artificial intelligence and supercomputer-grade workloads. The P100 was unveiled in April at Nvidia's GPU Tech Conference in California: it's a 16nm FinFET graphics processor with 15 billion transistors on a 600mm2 die. …
Chris Williams, 20 Jun 2016
Iron Giant

Open MPI gets closer to exascale-ready code

Big iron sysadmins: there's a significant upgrade to OpenMPI in the works. Late last week, OpenMPI released v2.0.0rc3, which brings a full Version 2 of the message passing interface closer to fruition. Open MPI is an open source implementation of the MPI Forum's message passing standards. It covers a variety of 32-bit and 64- …
SoftLayer logo on Shutterstock cake

Softlayer embiggens its cloud VMs

Softlayer has announced new and larger cloud VMs. Possibly to prevent easy spreadsheet comparisons between its cloud and rivals', SoftLayer has published specs of the new machines as images. Hence the JPG below. New Softlayer cloud VMs SoftLayer's new cloudy VM combinations All the cool kids these days offer sliders to …
Team Register, 17 Jun 2016
The Dell PowerEdge R530

Dell sockets it to 'em with Xeon server upgrades

You know the drill: Intel pops out a new Xeon ( in this case the E5-2600 v4 and over the following weeks all the major kit-makers find ways to put it to work. InDEll's case that means a new trio of PowerEdge servers for your consideration. The new model R530 is a 2U beast that Dell reckons is good for “common business …
Simon Sharwood, 17 Jun 2016
German battleship sinking at Scapa Flow

Quantum is shutting down sync'n'share biz Symform in July

Storage firm Quantum bought the Symform cloud consumer/small business file sync and share business in August 2014 – and is going to close it down on July 31. It has gone from acquisition to closure in 23 months. Why? According to a Quantum FAQ: "Quantum is discontinuing the Symform service due to its strategic business focus …
Chris Mellor, 17 Jun 2016
Man shreds documents. Photo by Shutterstock

BOFH: Follow the paper trail

Episode 8 "We were wondering.. what you were doing with... the storeroom?" the Boss asks. I notice a salivating consultant in the background and immediately recognise this for what it is - a land grab. Every now and then someone thinks that because computers are getting smaller there must be a stack of room available for them in our …
Simon Travaglia, 17 Jun 2016
WD RE4 Enterprise disk drive

Keep on trucking: Dropbox's Magic Pocket and the curse of the loading bay

It's not something the average sysadmin has to worry about, but when you're rolling out terabyte after terabyte into a data centre with a presto time signature, the loading bay becomes a bottleneck. That's the kind of thing Dropbox faced in its rapid-fire move to build its own cloud outside the warm embrace of Amazon Web …
Pennies in a jar. Photo via Shutterstock

Stopped buying Oracle's kit? You've literally decimated its profit

Oracle is talking up soaring sales for its cloudy operations – while the IT giant's profit has taken a big hit over the past 12 months. "We dramatically overachieved again in the cloud," gushed co-CEO Safra Catz in a conference call with analysts, putting her bruised revenue and net income figures aside. "As the business grows …
Shaun Nichols, 17 Jun 2016
Lost box, photo via Shutterstock

Persistent containers from Portworx's PX-Enterprise package

Portworx's PX-Enterprise package is persistent storage for containers. The firm claims it can reduce costs by 70 per cent compared to so-called legacy storage products. Startup Portworx says "containers are distributed and fast, while legacy storage is siloed and slow, and cannot be quickly provisioned or scaled to respond to …
Chris Mellor, 16 Jun 2016
Man drinks Beer. Photo by shutterstock

Forget your stupid campus party. I'm going to Frankfurt to do some HPC

HPC Blog The world's attention will be focused on Frankfurt, Germany next week for the kick-off of the fifth annual ISC'16 Student Cluster Competition. Twelve teams of university undergraduates will travel from far and wide to prove their HPC and clustering prowess in a competition that will demand everything they have – and more. …
Picture of multi-layered sandwich. Photo by Shutterstock

Pivot3 stuffs NexGen all-flash tier into hyper-converged sandwich

Pivot3 has a new vSTAC product combining its hyper-converged infrastructure appliance tech with NexGen Storage’s all-flash array technology and quality of service functions. NexGen was acquired by Pivot3 in a cash-free merger in January. At that point, startup Pivot3 was shipping a range of vSTAC hyper-converged appliances. …
Chris Mellor, 16 Jun 2016
Tallboy bomb dump. Pic: Australian War Memorial

DataCore drops SPC-1 bombshell

The Fort Lauderdale boys have struck again, with a record-breaking run of 5 million IOPS, and maybe killed off every other SPC-1 benchmark contender's hopes for a year or more. DataCore Software, head-quartered in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, has scored 5,120,098.98 SPC-1 IOPS [PDF] with a simple 2-node Lenovo server set-up, …
Chris Mellor, 15 Jun 2016
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I know for certain what software-defined storage is. It's the new black

I’m not going to re-define software-defined. Instead I’d like to look around and try to make sense of different interpretations and architecture designs that make this claim. I have intentionally left out some solutions because they are not software-defined for me, while for others, I may have just forgotten to mention them or …
Earth

Punchy SimpliVity wins a Global 50 financial services customer

Hyper-converged systems supplier SimpliVity has won a Global 50 customer, a financial services one. This company has been in existence for more than 100 years. It hopes to reduce its IT total cost of ownership by an astonishing $100m over five years. We don't know who it is but we're thinking it is a financial services …
Chris Mellor, 14 Jun 2016
Guy in shirt and tie visits the beach. wearing "beach business-casual". Photo by Shutterstock

Explicit Intel 'Beach' pics 'leaked': All eyeballs on Optane SSD roadmap

Intel looks to be producing four Optane product families, with Mansion Beach, Brighton Beach, Stony Beach and Carson Beach code names seen on what looks like a leaked Intel slide. The Intel Optane SSD roadmap slide from BenchLife Info of Taiwan shows us various Intel SSD product families during 2016 and the first 2017 quarter …
Chris Mellor, 14 Jun 2016

DataCore dominating SPC-1 benchmark on price–performance

DataCore has answered criticism of its Parallel Server SPC-1 benchmark [PDF] – that it was not applicable to enterprises, as it lacked high availability (HA) – by running an HA version that is the fifth-best SPC-1 benchmark performer ever. It is also the third-best ever price–performance score on the benchmark, with the top …
Chris Mellor, 13 Jun 2016
Tom Marshburn (L), Roman Romanenko (C) and Chris Hadfield (R) squeeze into a Russian Soyuz-TMA capsule shortly before their return to Earth.

Can NetApp's 4KB block writes really hold more data?

COmment NetApp announced compaction as an extra form of data reduction in ONTAP v9.0. What is it? Compaction applies to NetApp’s all-flash FAS arrays. A blog post by Adam Bergh, data centre practise lead at Presidio, explains that multiple IOs can be written more efficiently, from a WAFL space point of view, if they are stored in a …
Chris Mellor, 13 Jun 2016
Ireland map, photo via Shutterstock

Over Ireland? Bothered by Brexit? Find that new home for your cloud

As we all know, the cloud isn't an amorphous, non-geographical blob of computing. Which is a good thing, because there are plenty of legal implications around where your data lives and where it moves both to and from. The point is, of course, that as the cloud isn't just a cloud, your choice of provider is largely dependent on …
Dave Cartwright, 13 Jun 2016
Ethernet by https://www.flickr.com/photos/razor512/ CC2.0 attribution https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

NVMe over Ethernet is the future. And that's how we roll – Tegile

Comment Yesterday, at a TechLive event in London, Tegile said connecting arrays to servers across low-latency NVMe over Ethernet was the way forward. Chief Marketing Officer Narayan Venkat said shared storage arrays had a future and represents a better way of consolidating data than hyper-converged systems. Networked arrays need to …
Chris Mellor, 10 Jun 2016
 Good GCSEs should cost parents a Jesus-phone

Here's what six storage suppliers will be doing for the next year or two

Analyst haus Stifel Nicolaus' MD, Aaron Rakers, has had some fireside chats with senior execs from Brocade and QLogic, Pure and Nimble, Seagate and WDC at a Stifel Nicolaus Technology, Internet & Media Conference in San Francisco. The execs gave their thoughts on HDD demand, HAMR HDD tech, NVME over fabrics, Gen 6 Fibre …
Chris Mellor, 10 Jun 2016
Ireland and Great Britain map, image via Shutterstock

Cork data centre will offer super-speedy US to Europe data times

An Irish property company is expected to secure planning permission for a 25,550 square meter facility on the outskirts of Cork City that will offer much reduced data latency times between the US and Europe. JCD Group’s rapid movement with plans for the centre on the site of a disused electronics factory in the city is in …
Joe Fay, 10 Jun 2016
AI Robot viewed from the back against an arty landscape. Pic via SHuttertock

It's not us, it's you: Boffins ditch supercomputers in lust for new materials

Physicists from the National Institute of Standards and Technology have created a quantum simulator designed to model complex quantum mechanics phenomena that even the fastest supercomputer could not compute. The researchers created the simulator by trapping up to 219 beryllium ions inside a Penning trap in a bid to study …
Katyanna Quach, 10 Jun 2016

Sysadmin 'fesses up to wrecking his former employer's IT systems

A former sysadmin with HP-spinoff Agilent has pleaded guilty to intentionally damaging the company's systems after he was laid off. Kenneth Kezeor, 47, worked for Varian from 1997 until 2010, when it was bought by Agilent. Two years later, he was laid off as part of a general staff reduction. He did not take the news well, …
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Big Data upstart Iguaz unveils furiously complex exercise to remove complexity

Startup Iguaz.io has unveiled a virtual (big) data services architecture which it says can deliver data in the needed firms to apps in the Big Data infrastructure without multiple and repeated data copying and conversion. The company is a 2014-founded, $15m A-round-funded startup. Its pitch is that the entirety of the data …
Chris Mellor, 9 Jun 2016
Attack film poster

Nimbus Data CEO shoots from the hip at NetApp's SolidFire buy

Nimbus Data CEO Thomas Isakovich thinks NetApp's purchase of SolidFire is its final great mistake. He told us: “SolidFire’s poor density and egregiously high energy consumption violate the very customers they are trying to appeal to: cloud builders that have to pay for data center rack space and power bills. We suspect that …
Chris Mellor, 9 Jun 2016
Scrambled Eggs from shutterstock

Google Ventures-backed sync-'n'-share firm changes direction. Got your attention?

File sync 'n' share startup Egnyte is starting a move to expand from file management into content intelligence, entering the domain of Commvault and Veritas. Egnyte was founded in 2007 by CEO Vineet Jain, VP Product Management RAjesh Ram, and VP Operations and Chief Security Officer Kris Lahiri. It has amassed $62.5m in …
Chris Mellor, 9 Jun 2016

Scality waggles finger, shows off sixth RING

Scality's sixth RING object storage software version adds S3 compliance to Active Directory and AWS identity and access management support. It says it's the object storage supplier with all this so you can have enterprise production deployments of S3-based apps. We're told object storage deployments have been limited to date, …
Chris Mellor, 9 Jun 2016
Australia map and flag pwned theme

AWS blames 'latent bug' for prolonging Sydney EC2 outage

Amazon Web Services has explained the extended outage its Sydney services suffered last weekend, attributing downtime to a combination of power problems and a “latent bug in our instance management software”. Sydney recorded over 150mm of rain on last weekend. On Sunday the 5th the city copped 93 mm alone, plus winds gusting …
Darren Pauli, 9 Jun 2016
Cable ship Ile de Re

AWS Sydney's outage shows the value of a walk in the cloud

To understand the lessons of this week's Amazon Web Services outage in Sydney, which took down the local AWS cloud for a few hours, take a walk down Huntley Street, Alexandria, an unlovely street in a light industrial suburb. Huntley Street is interesting because its footpaths are riddled with an unusual concentration of …

Microsoft's mobile device management meltdown

Microsoft UK’s online enterprise mobility device management service Intune suffered a near four-hour wobble this morning that was rectified early in the afternoon. The firm ‘fessed up to “issues” and to “service degradation” on its online service status page at 9am. “We continue to work on a configuration change to speed up …
Paul Kunert, 8 Jun 2016
Fingers crossed

SolidFire offers 'pay as you grow' deals to fight off software upstarts

Storage architect If you’ve ever had to scope out and purchase enterprise storage, you’ll know what a nightmare it can be. Vendors love to make the process as opaque as possible, with quotes that run into multiple pages and dozens of line items – including bezels and racks. Consider also the issue of adding more hardware (e.g. drives and …
Chris Evans, 8 Jun 2016

Woah: NetApp is number two in the all-flash market, says IDC

NetApp is now second in the all-flash array market, according to IDC numbers we have been given. The numbers are for vendor revenues and the first quarter of 2016. The figures show NetApp having $181.1m revenues and a 22.8 per cent share, second to EMC’s $245.6m and 30.9 per cent share. It grew its all-flash business 238 per …
Chris Mellor, 8 Jun 2016