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Want to give your data centre a makeover? Spend half a day learning how

Promo Are you happy with your data centre? Let’s face it, wouldn’t you like to redo it and get it right this time? Or perhaps you’d just be interested in slashing your management costs? Microsoft wants to help you modernise whatever you have underpinning your company and so invites you to one of its Transform the Data Centre Immersion …
Team Register, 20 Apr 2015
Ice cores stored in a snow trough at the Bruce Plateau camp. Credit: Ellen Mosley-Thompson, OSU

The data centre design that lets you cool down – and save electrons

I started my commercial data centre experience in London in the late 1990s. Even back then, most of the service providers were parroting the same mantra: “Your power provision is limited, and we'll charge you through the nose for anything over the basic consumption figure you've signed up to.” The logic most of them gave was the …
Dave Cartwright, 20 Apr 2015

‘Right to be forgotten’ prompts more French privacy concerns

French data protection authority CNIL received 260 complaints last year related to the so-called 'right to be forgotten' ruling. Presenting its annual report on Thursday, the organisation revealed that it had received nearly 135,000 calls from the public in 2014, a rise of 7 per cent on the previous year. The 11,000-odd …
Jennifer Baker, 17 Apr 2015

Remember SeaMicro? Red-ink-soaked AMD dumps it overboard

Tattered AMD says it's done with its SeaMicro server division, following a grim quarter that saw the ailing chipmaker weather losses beyond the expectations of even the gloomiest of Wall Street analysts. In guidance issued alongside AMD's earnings report for the first quarter of its fiscal 2015, CFO Devinder Kumar said the …
Neil McAllister, 16 Apr 2015

Sysadmins, patch now: HTTP 'pings of death' are spewing across web to kill Windows servers

The SANS Institute has warned Windows IIS web server admins to get patching as miscreants are now exploiting a flaw in the software to crash websites. The security bug (CVE-2015-1635) allows attackers to knock web servers offline by sending a simple HTTP request. Microsoft fixed this denial-of-service vulnerability on Tuesday …
Iain Thomson, 16 Apr 2015
Werner Vogels

Amazon CTO destealths to throw light on AWS data centre design

Ask Amazon about its AWS data centres and you’ll get get this response: Amazon doesn’t talk about its data centres. Until its chief technology officer pitches in, that is. Werner Vogels closed London’s AWS Summit Wednesday by cracking open a little the black curtain that hides Amazon’s data centres from the world during a …
Gavin Clarke, 16 Apr 2015
Oracle headquarters

Oracle grunts, grimaces, pushes out 98-flaw security patch batch

Oracle has patched nearly 100 security flaws in Java, Fusion Middleware, Database, MySQL and other products. For Java SE, the update fixes 14 CVE-listed bugs. All of the flaws are remotely exploitable without authentication to compromise a victim's computer, and three were given risk assessment scores of 10 out of 10. (Psst ... …
Shaun Nichols, 15 Apr 2015
Delia Derbyshire edits on a Philips EL3503

DDN unveils filer boxes for all occasions at NAB 2015

DDN has launched two new filers: the MEDIAScaler for media workflows and a refreshed GRIDScaler for HPC-style workloads. Both were launched at NAB 2015, the National Association of Broadcasting Show in Las Vegas, where user attendees will typically work with large sets of often multi-component video files and need fast access to …
Chris Mellor, 15 Apr 2015

It's 2015 and a RICH TEXT FILE or a HTTP request can own your Windows machine

Microsoft has delivered its latest monthly batch of security updates to address flaws in Windows, Office and Internet Explorer. Redmond's latest Patch Tuesday payload includes 11 bulletins, four of which are rated critical as they allow attackers to execute malicious code on victims' computers from across the internet. The full …
Shaun Nichols, 15 Apr 2015

What just went down on Intel for three months? Er, PC and mobile chips

Intel announced its earnings based on its new financial reporting structure for the first time on Tuesday, but despite having lumped its ailing Mobile & Communications unit in with its PC Client business, there was no hiding that the three months ended on March 28 were a tough quarter for Chipzilla. Total revenue for the first …
Neil McAllister, 14 Apr 2015
Need for Speed: The Run

Need speed? Then PCIe it is – server power without the politics

How many PCI Express (PCIe) lanes does your computer have? How many of those are directly provided by the CPU? With only a few exceptions, nobody except high-end gamers and the High Performance Computing (HPC) crowd care. Regular punters (maybe) care about how many PCIe slots they have. So why is it that gamers and HPC types get …
Trevor Pott, 14 Apr 2015
Ransom note saying "Pay Up" in blackmail type

Welcome to the FUTURE: Maine cops pay Bitcoin ransom to end office hostage drama

Blundering cops in Maine, US, have enriched malware masterminds by paying up to decrypt files held hostage by ransomware. Four city police departments and a sheriff's office in Lincoln County share a common computer network run by Burgess Computer, which hosts the plods' administrative files. Then one day the entire system was …
Iain Thomson, 13 Apr 2015

Backdoor bot brains snatched after cops, white hats raid servers

Microsoft and Interpol have teamed up to derail a malware infection that compromised more than 770,000 Windows PCs worldwide. Simda is a “pay-per-install” software nasty: fraudsters pay miscreants some sum of money for every 1,000 or so machines they compromise. The hackers effectively earn cash by selling access to the infected …
John Leyden, 13 Apr 2015

'Chinese hackers' were sniffing SE Asian drawers for YEARS

Security researchers have exposed a decade-long cyber-spying campaign that targeted south-east Asia and India since 2004. The so-called APT 30 hackers are likely to be agents of the Chinese government, according to network security company FireEye. APT 30's primary goal appears to be the theft of sensitive information for …
John Leyden, 13 Apr 2015
Zombie experience

Videogame publishers to fans: Oi, freetard! STOP RESURRECTING our dead titles online

Google-sponsored "digital rights" group the Electronic Frontier Foundation has urged the US Copyright Office to allow players to be exempt from DMCA takedowns when they modify and then upload abandoned games online. However, videogame lobby group the Entertainment Software Association has dismissed the EFF's campaign in a 72- …
Kelly Fiveash, 11 Apr 2015
No Sale

It's Friday or as we call it, What Is Intel Buying Now Rumor Day: Not Altera, but Broadcom?

Insider sources say Intel won't be buying Altera after all, but the reported collapse of talks between the two companies has already spurred talk that Chipzilla may turn its attention to acquiring someone else – with Broadcom topping the list of candidates. Bloomberg was first to report that Altera, a maker of field- …
Neil McAllister, 10 Apr 2015
Terminator head

Oh, hi there, SKYNET: US military wants self-enhancing software that will outlive its creators

The US military's nerve-center of secret-squirrel boffinry DARPA wants to write software capable of running for a full century without becoming obsolete. Dubbed "Building Resource Adaptive Software Systems" (BRASS), the project [PDF] will look into the creation of a new software stack that can automatically make use of hardware …
Shaun Nichols, 9 Apr 2015
Leonidas, king of Sparta, as portrayed by Gerard Butler in the film 300. Pic copyright: Warner Bros

Data centre doesn't like your face? That's a good thing

Your company has decided, quite sensibly, that it wants to move its application infrastructure to a data centre rather than living with the risk of an on-premise approach. So how do you choose the data centre you should move to? Location Location is a compromise of locality versus suitability, but in my mind you should lean …

Defiant Labio lawyer spits on black hats after 'med data' theft

Hacker collective Rex Mundi’s Twitter account has yet again been suspended after its latest extortion attempts. The group, which says it has no motivation other than to make money, most recently targeted Labio, a French laboratory company specialising in private patients. Using the now-defunct @RexMundi2015 account, the …
Windows OEM devices on stage at Computex

Pro-tip: Steal a TARDIS to survive Windows Server preview death

Microsoft's decision to deliver the next version of Windows Server in 2016 has created an odd problem: the current tech preview of the new OS will expire before it ships the next pre-beta build. This state of affairs has come about because Microsoft released the first tech preview way back in October 2014, with a six-month …
Bill Gates and Paul Allen 1981

Midlife crisis, suck ingenuity? Microsoft turns 40; does the dad dance

It's 40 years to the day since computer software company Microsoft started life under Bill Gates and Paul Allen. On Friday, Redmondians were apparently greeted with a memo from co-founder Gates, who these days – besides from being the world's richest man – acts as a technical advisor to current MS chief Satya Nadella. In the …
Kelly Fiveash, 4 Apr 2015
Bradley University offer to hackers

Hacked uni's admins hand ID theft prevention reward to data burglars

An Illinois university's sysadmins have seemingly handed data burglars a year-long subscription to LifeLock, an identity alert and credit monitoring system, following a data breach at the US institution which left thousands vulnerable to identity theft. With the best of intentions, Bradley University reacted to being hacked by …
Cloud Hype Hoodie

AWS flops out massive D to vaporise big data rigs

Big data's a fine concept, but when it meets the real world of buying kit to run it on things can get nasty because the cost of the rigs required to crunch lots of data can be very considerable. Some big data vendors make a virtue of offering their own specialised servers for the job and the likes of VMware offer ways to create …

AMD opens kimono on chip futures a little more

The best way to protect corporate secrets is to announce them at a tech conference in Japan, which is why word is only just arriving of AMD's February reveal of a clustering roadmap. Consumer and commercial business lead Junji Hayashi told the PC Cluster Consortium workshop in Osaka that the 2016 release CPU cores (an ARMv8 and …

Feds cuffed for allegedly PILFERING Silk Road drug souk's Bitcoins

The US Department of Justice has accused two federal agents of stealing more than a million dollars in Bitcoins during the Silk Road investigation. Former Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) agent Carl Force and former Secret Service agent Shaun Bridges have been charged with theft of government property; wire fraud; money …
Shaun Nichols, 30 Mar 2015
Facebook data center - interior, lit up

One day all this could be yours: Be Facebook, without being Facebook

Data centre design is a costly business, costing Apple $1.2bn for a pair of “next-generation” carbon-neutral plants in Ireland and Denmark. Even the smallest average Joe data centre will easily cost north of $1m once the options such as multihomed networks, HVAC systems and other such critical kit is installed with redundancy, …
Stuart Burns, 30 Mar 2015
Ice maiden. Pic: Futurilla, Flickr

In-depth: Supermicro's youngest Twin is a real silent ice maiden

Sysadmin blog Supermicro has released the first of its new line of Twin series unblade* servers and El Reg has taken the opportunity to given them a right good kicking. The 2028TP-DC0FR and 2028TP-DC1R models have crossed our lab and here's what's what with the 2015 Twins. As would be expected when designing a line of mostly similar systems …
Trevor Pott, 27 Mar 2015
Nerdalize server/heater

Dutch companies try warming homes with cloud servers

Dutch companies Nerdalize and Eneco, the former a startup, the latter an energy company, have started a trial of cloud servers as home heaters. The idea is that by placing servers in homes, where a cheap source of heat is a good thing, you don't need to build data centres, where heat is a bad thing. In exchange for hosting a …
Simon Sharwood, 25 Mar 2015
Bitcoin bloodbath

Ransomware holds schools hostage: 'Now give us Bitcoin worth $129k, er, $124k, wait ...'

A New Jersey school district in the US has been held hostage by ransomware that has apparently demanded hundreds of Bitcoins to end the situation. Teachers, staff and kids in Swedesboro-Woolwich school district have been unable to access their computer files in classrooms as a result of a network-wide security compromise, The …
Shaun Nichols, 25 Mar 2015
Suitcase bulging with cash

Open-Xchange builds anti Oracle stack after server M&A splurge

Open-Xchange, a maker of web apps that some of the biggest telcos and hosts rebrand as their own, has bought up open-source mailserver firm Dovecot and DNS server outfit PowerDNS. There are lots of possible reasons for this burst of activity, the most obvious being Open-Xchange's desire to offer its service provider customers a …
David Meyer, 24 Mar 2015

Premera healthcare: US govt security audit gave hacked biz thumbs up

Serious doubt has been cast on the US government's data security regulations after Premera Blue Cross was declared secure by Uncle Sam – just months before the healthcare giant was ransacked for financial and medical information by hackers. The biz underwent a computer security audit by a federal watchdog in January 2014, was …
Iain Thomson, 23 Mar 2015
Power lines

Microsoft gets data centres powered up for big UPS turn-off

The problem with data centres is that you have to plug them in. Or to put it another way, the problem with data centres is that they draw their power from a national grid and this ultimately narrows the cost efficiency structure under which they can operate. Conspicuously creaky and ageing grid networks in (even) advanced first- …
Ceremony to mark ARM's decision to open a CPU dev centre in Taiwan

ARM plans to win 20 per cent of the server market by the year 2020

ARM Holdings is telling investors it will take 20 per cent of the server silicon market by the year 2020. The company made the claim last week at an event in Taiwan, sending ripples through the Asian media. A little searching shows that presentations like this one (PDF) shows that the 20 per cent claim has been used in chats …
Simon Sharwood, 23 Mar 2015
Google's data centre in Hamina, Finland

Forget Nokia: Finland's promising future is to be server central

Finland isn’t just known as the country with the highest number of saunas and heavy metal bands per capita, it also counts Linus Torvalds as its most famed technology son and has a growing data centre development culture. Of course, all Scandinavian countries have the potential to grow their data centre businesses, but Finland …

IBM's OpenPower gang touts first proper non-Big Blue-badged server

GTC 2015 The OpenPower Foundation unveiled new hardware – including its first commercially available server – at its first OpenPower Summit on Wednesday, a mini-event nestled within Nvidia's GPU Technology Conference in California. The foundation has also forged a relationship with the Facebook-led Open Compute Project, which operates in …
Chris Williams, 19 Mar 2015
Crop of doctor with pen and clipboard

Premera Blue Cross is sick after hackers plunder their servers

Health insurance firm Premera Blue Cross has admitted that it has become the latest victim of data theft after hackers targeted its IT department's servers in what's been dubbed a "sophisticated attack". On May 5 last year online hackers successfully penetrated Premera's defenses and cracked servers containing personal, …
Iain Thomson, 19 Mar 2015
Zombie rising from the grave

Zombie SCO shuffles back into court seeking IBM Linux cash

The SCO vs. IBM case has once again thrust up an undead limb up from deep beneath the soil. The case hinges on just who owns Unix and has been burbling along since before Facebook was founded. Most of the world's population long since lost interest in SCO's contention that IBM and Novell pinched bits of its code and tossed them …
Simon Sharwood, 18 Mar 2015
Bondi Blue Rev. A iMac - logo

Apple orders white box servers from Taiwan for data centre refresh

Apple's future bit barns look to be built around white box servers from Taiwan, according to a Digitimes report. The Taiwanese outlet notes that Apple recently clambered aboard the Open Compute Project, and says local white-box server makers have recently received orders from Cupertino. Those orders are to replace servers in …
Simon Sharwood, 18 Mar 2015
Sir Terry Pratchett

Web geeks grant immortality to Sir Terry Pratchett – using smuggled web code

The death of Sir Terry Pratchett last week left many fans bereft, but some canny geeks have devised a system to ensure his name lives on in everyday web traffic. In Pratchett's 2004 book Going Postal, the deceased inventor of the "clacks," a form of communications system for sending data over large distances, is immortalized by …
Iain Thomson, 18 Mar 2015
sign post pointing to trail in two different directions

MOVE IT! 10 top tips for shifting your data centre

The scenario's a hauntingly familiar one. You're the IT person who's just been told by the boss: “We're moving the kit to <insert name of whatever data centre he's signed up with in a panic>, now get on and do it.” I've done more than my fair share of migrations from on-premise systems to data centres – and more often than not …
Dave Cartwright, 18 Mar 2015

Drobo releases range-topping fatter, faster 12-bay bruiser

Drobo – the data robot company that almost two years ago merged with Connected Data – has updated its rack-mounted B1200i product, making it both fatter and faster. Drobos data storage robots are remarkably easy-to-use storage devices which you can self-populate with disks, and which protect data with a BeyondRAID scheme, said …
Chris Mellor, 17 Mar 2015
yellow measuring tape - black writing

HP: we had portfolio gaps in entry level servers

HP GPC 2015 A competitive bite is something HP has confessed to lacking in the small biz server arena of late but has coughed a couple of entry level boxes, and is tweaking the channel’s financial plumbing. The two ProLiant tower servers, the ML10 v2 and ML110 are priced at $300 and $1000 respectively, with the first aimed at very small …
Paul Kunert, 17 Mar 2015