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GPFS Storage Servers based on System x servers

Big Blue's GPFS: The tech's fantastic. Shame about the product

Storagebod IBM is a great technology company: so many of the technologies we take for granted can be traced to back to Big Blue. And many of today’s implementations still are poorer than the original implementations. And yet the firm is not the dominant force it once was; an organisational behemoth, riven with politics and fiefdoms doesn’t …
StorageBod, 15 Apr 2014

You'd better get out before the sync 'n' share bubble POPS

Virtualisation guru Chad Sakac hit on something interesting in one of his recent blog posts: he wrote of how a product becomes a feature: in this case "sync 'n' share" functionality. We’ve seen products become features before: remember when deduplication has moved from being a product to becoming a feature of most storage arrays …
StorageBod, 14 Apr 2014
SQL Server 2014

Violin array comes with new SQL sauce

Violin Memory's Steve Willson gave part of the game away on March 24, with a TechNet UK blog post: Violin's new array runs SQL 2014 in memory. Willson wrote: SQL 2014's new in-memory computing takes several leaps forward in performance and control. Application designers can now control what data is permanently staged in memory …
Chris Mellor, 11 Apr 2014
Dambuster_Mohne_dam_breach

Puff on a hybrid – next thing you know, you're hooked on a public cloud

Blocks and Files I had a flash of inspiration today. Hybrid public-private cloud systems are becoming a gateway drug to pure public clouds. Why is this an arguable view? Let’s look to the ideas discussed within The Big Switch, written by Nicholas Carr. In his seminal book, Carr argues that a public IT utility provider will provide CPU cycles and …
Chris Mellor, 11 Apr 2014
cloud_channel

Cloud storage gateway firm: Selling to end users? Meh. We'll leave it to CSPs, et CTERA

A briefing from folks at cloud storage gateway upstart CTERA revealed there was more to the firm than Reg storage desk had thought. CTERA was founded by Liran Eshel and Zohar Kaufman after experience running a company in the SMB network security area and producing appliances. Eshel is CTERA’s CEO and Kaufmann its VP for research …
Chris Mellor, 10 Apr 2014

IT bods: How long does it take YOU to train up on new tech?

Storagebod I’m a big fan of data networking blogger Greg Ferro, who writes under the moniker Etherealmind. Greg and I are really on the same page with regards to work/life balance but his latest thoughts on that topic struck a chord with me. Drawn from his latest blog post, the key part says: Why am I focused on work life ? After 25 or so …
Chris Mellor, 9 Apr 2014

CDOT relatively crap for flash, hyperscalers crap for constant storage

Chief NetApp techie Jay Kidd had some strong words for the flash and cloud crowd at a Wells Fargo event for investors. Among other things, he covered Clustered Data ONTAP and flash and the customer spending slowdown. Not a great fit and a transitory slowdown were the take-away messages. The event was the Wells Fargo Tech …
Chris Mellor, 8 Apr 2014

Organic food: Pricey, not particularly healthy, won't save you from cancer

Comment One of the primary drivers of the growth in organic food sales over the last couple of decades is the perception that organic food is healthier than conventionally farmed food. It stands to reason, doesn’t it? After all conventional crops depend on chemicals and organic food doesn't. And we all know that chemicals, in this case …

Cisco edges away from VMware, tries Red Hat on for size

Blocks and Files From co-operation to co-op-etition and then competition: it's happening in front of our eyes with EMC and Cisco. The choreography involves Cisco working more and more with Red Hat and its KVM server hypervisor and less with EMC subsidiary VMware's ESX. Red Hat is joining in with Cisco and working with its OpFlex protocol in …
Chris Mellor, 4 Apr 2014
Sleep Cycle iOS app screenshot

Where the HELL is my ROBOT BUTLER?

Sysadmin blog For decades the development of the computer has been driven by businesses. Businesses bought mainframes, PCs and servers. They bought in such quantity that the consumer was, for most technology companies, a mere afterthought. Today, consumer purchases of endpoints outstrip business purchases by a wide margin. None of this is …
Trevor Pott, 4 Apr 2014

Need a refresher on virtualisation?

HPC Blog This year at GTC, NVIDIA was pushing its Kepler-based GRID GPU tech to virtualise desktops, enabling a “anything, anywhere, anytime, on any device” usage model, but as a side effect delivered lots of guidance for VDI and virtualisation newbies. GRID was one of the big announcements at GTC12, with demonstrations of the tech's …
Red tide

Tintri: We have ZERO interest in adding compute to storage

Comment Under new CEO Ken Klein, hybrid array startup Tintri is sticking to its virtualised server-centric networked storage knitting and embracing the cloud as a third tier cold storage vault. Currently a VMware-focused storage supplier using VMware storage abstractions, such as virtual machines (VMs) and virtual disks instead of LUNs …
Chris Mellor, 2 Apr 2014

Get ready for software-defined RADAR: Jam, eavesdrop, talk and target ... simultaneously

HPC blog With a big RF transmitter and enough fast computing power, you have the ability to do a lot of different things, as evidenced by a General Electric presentation on "software-defined radar" at the GPU conference this year. At GTC 13 last year, GE gave a standing-room-only presentation about how it's using RDMA (Remote Direct …

Tell it to me straight, vendors: Are you cheap and easy?

Is it easy? Is is cheap? These are pretty much the only two questions which interest me when talking to a vendor these days – after years of worrying about technology. Of course, if I was to produce an RFP document with simply those two questions, I’d probably be out of a job fairly swiftly. But those two questions are not …
StorageBod, 2 Apr 2014

Aw, SNAP. It's too late, you've already PAID for your storage array

Blocks and Files When a vendor says it has feature X, how do you know it's true? Storage arrays are mighty complex boxes and vendors' marketing of them can sometimes take a bypass around reality. How can you detect if this is happening? One way is to look for independent reviews of the product by a trusted reviewer. For example, product …
Chris Mellor, 2 Apr 2014
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella

How Microsoft can keep Win XP alive – and WHY: A real-world example

Sysadmin blog What if Microsoft announced it's not ending support for Windows XP next Tuesday after all, and instead will offer perpetual updates (for a small fee, of course). Something inside me, somewhere between my sense of humor and soul-crushing cynicism, drove me to turn that dream into an April Fool for this year. But all cruel joking …
Trevor Pott, 2 Apr 2014
Titanfall

Titanfall, shoot-'em-up gamers, cloudy contracts and cattle

Sysadmin blog A "servers are cattle, not pets", DevOps-style approach is the only feasible way for a small number of people to run modern cloud-scale data centres. Small teams running large server farms are necessary to grind down costs so as to keep up with the Amazon-fearing race to the bottom. But even when cloud computing works exactly as …
Trevor Pott, 1 Apr 2014

App-happy cloud bod? You'd better keep eyes on your networks

Measuring how well your application is performing is not a straightforward task. Many enterprises have multiple locations, work with cloud-based applications and have end users stationed in different parts of the world. With the future of IT infrastructure trending toward more interconnectivity and external dependencies, it …
REM's Shiny, Happy People

VDI a 'delightful' experience... Really?

GPU Technology Conference The VDI talk was the kind of GTC session I love. It’s where a real-world expert talks about how a difficult task is actually accomplished. Not the theory, not how it should work on paper, but what it takes to actually move a project from Point “A” to Point “We’re done with this”. Ken Fingerlos from Lewan Technology delivered in …

Analyse this: Gartner eyes up EVERYONE'S mid-range arrays

Gartner has rated mid-range arrays in a report - Critical Capabilities for General-Purpose, Midrange Storage Arrays - which includes the expected mainstream vendors as well as three startups. This marks the first time a reputable independent analyst agency has compared and contrasted mainstream vendor, niche supplier and startup …
Chris Mellor, 25 Mar 2014
Akaash Tablet

Schoolkids given WORLD'S CHEAPEST TABLETS: Is it really that hard to swallow?

Sysadmin Blog For some time now The Register has been tracking an effort by the Indian government to provide their schoolchildren with low cost tablets. The subsidised cost of the devices for Indian families is slated to be 1,500 rupees (£14, $24), with the unsubsidised version available to the rest of the world for £30. The decision to …
Trevor Pott, 25 Mar 2014
Athanasius Kircher's map of Atlantis c. 1669, North is at the bottom

Atlantis: That whole storage HOLY GRAIL thing? We've only gone and DONE IT

Blocks and Files When we said that storage nirvana would be the ability to have VSAN virtualised storage containers and physical SAN array resources managed by the same policy-driven software abstraction layer, we little imagined a software supplier would pop up and say: “We can do that.” That's just about what El Reg storage desk wrote in this …
Chris Mellor, 25 Mar 2014
Steve Bennet, ex-Symantec CEO

Big Yellow loses its head... again: Symantec, we need to talk

Comment Symantec recently fired Steve Bennett, its second CEO in two years. As a previous chairman of the board, Bennett was part of the team that shifted off the previous CEO. Apparently now, new blood is needed to "act aggressively to capture a growing share of this market," in the words of the new chief, Michael Brown. Steve Bennet …
Chris Mellor, 24 Mar 2014

Stop fiddling with your VMAX knobs or I'll chop your fingers off

Storagebod An EMC systems engineer has written a blog post about the VMAX FAST VP array. While it's full of good advice, he unintentionally sums up everything that's wrong with VMAX today: the knobs. The blog in question, written by Sean Cummins, is well written and goes into plenty of detail about getting the best out of VMAX FAST VP. …
StorageBod, 24 Mar 2014
Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 9M-MRO

5 Eyes in the Sky: The TRUTH about Flight MH370 and SPOOKSATS

Comment That the US and other nations operate spy satellites capable of taking very detailed photographs of Earth is not in doubt. But the idea that those satellites have been pressed into service to find downed Malaysian Airlines flight MH370, and that it is therefore possible to infer some of the satellites' capabilities, is very …
Simon Sharwood, 21 Mar 2014
VMware's monster VM

It's storage's HOLY GRAIL: VSANs, PSANs and virtual silos

Blocks and Files Three blog posts about VMware’s VSAN had me thinking furiously. Where is VMware going with this and where could or should it go? The first blog was Storagebod on VSANity in which he says VSAN, the ESXi hypervisor’s aggregating of server-direct attached storage (DAS) into a virtual SAN, was nice up to a point. He asks: “Why limit …
Chris Mellor, 21 Mar 2014
Gartner ECB storage trends

Gartner networked storage suppliers: Behold the Reg spaghetti-graphic

Gartner’s worldwide external controller-based disk storage numbers have come in - and we’ve graphed them for all the quarters since the start of 2011. Some caveats: These are disk storage numbers; no solid state storage is included, We calculated percentage shares and any errors are ours, Hitachi/HDS revenue excludes OEM …
Chris Mellor, 20 Mar 2014
Crystal ball via http://www.manoftaste.de/

So, Mystic Joe Tucci: Is a hyper-converged tool in EMC's future?

Comment EMC could be getting into hyper-converged systems via VMware and software-defined hardware components, though the storage firm is yet to confirm industry rumours. So far neither the parent company nor virtualisation juggernaut VMware has substantiated reports by CRN on "Project Mystic", supposedly a more converged appliance than …
Chris Mellor, 19 Mar 2014
European Union Flag

So. Farewell then Steelie Neelie: You were WORSE than USELESS

+Comment Neelie Kroes' stint as the EU's “Commissioner for a Digital Agenda” ends when the Barroso II Commission closes up shop in the autumn. Perhaps the post should be abolished with her departure. The Dutch economist could have carved out a distinctly European approach, distinct from the Asian autocracies and American Wild West, but …
Andrew Orlowski, 19 Mar 2014
The new Twitter logo. Pic: Twitter

Sorry Dick: 3 reasons why Twitter will NEVER be unblocked in China

Comment Twitter CEO Dick Costolo is in China this week visiting the country but rumours of the microblogging platform’s resurrection there have been greatly exaggerated. Twitter and Facebook have been blocked in the Middle Kingdom since 2009, when the government claimed they had been used by protesters to organise ahead of deadly anti- …
Phil Muncaster, 18 Mar 2014

App.net 'not just a way for nerds to talk to each other', boss tells nerds

Column It has never been quite accurate to describe the social network App.net, founded by developer and entrepreneur Dalton Caldwell a little over a year ago, as simply a Twitter also-ran. True, the similarities between the two are impossible to miss: App.net users have accounts prefixed by “@” from which they post (not tweet) …
Dave Mandl, 14 Mar 2014

Enterprise adolescent: Salesforce.com's struggles at 15

It’s no way to celebrate a milestone birthday. Salesforce.com may claim to help 100,000 companies understand their businesses and make money, but in the week Salesforce turned 15, it emerged that the firm needs to get its own house in order. Chief financial officer Graham Smith revealed in a correspondence with the US Securities …
X-IO ISE positioning

X-IO to heat up ISE storage bricks with iSCSI access

Sealed disk/flash array supplier X-IO is growing at 30 per cent a year and intending to widen its market by adding iSCSI later this year to the existing Fibre Channel access. ISE and Hyper ISE products are 3U sealed rack enclosures requiring no maintenance access for five years as the smart software inside copes with any …
Chris Mellor, 13 Mar 2014
Violin Market fit

Orchestral manoeuvres in the dark: Violin restrings its instrument

We can see the intended shape of Violin as it emerges fresh and shining from its refit, but we've yet to hear it played. What will be the next move of Violin's brand new CEO, Kevin DeNuccio? DeNuccio has been restringing Violin, cutting and restructuring the organisation's engineering and go-to-market, with more emphasis on …
Chris Mellor, 13 Mar 2014

Seven Great Moments in World Wide Web History

Web @ 25 + Bong [I am grateful to my assistant มาลัย (which means 'Garland of Flowers' in Thai) for scraping the BBC website to bring us these facts, which I have then curated. If you can remember any of this, you can't have been there – sb] 1. 1989: Nuclear beginnings At CERN in Switzerland, humble English white-coated lab assistant Tim …
Steve Bong, 12 Mar 2014
Picture by David Shankbone, licensed under  Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported

Speaking in Tech: Holy SiT! It's our 100th ep. Time for a video-podcast

Vid special speaking_in_tech Greg Knieriemen podcast enterprise This week is the 100th episode of Speaking in Tech which was broadcast through video on Google+ Hangouts! Fear not, uncool kids, we recorded it for you. Hosted by Greg Knieriemen, Ed Saipetch and Sarah Vela. Our special guests this week are John Troyer from VMware, Amy Lewis …
Team Register, 12 Mar 2014
vSAN is that converged storage layer in the storage scheme VMware has cooked up

I, for one, welcome our VMware VSAN overlord

Storagebod So VSAN is finally here in a released form. On paper, it looks very impressive. I spend an awful lot of time looking at scale-out storage systems – looking at ways to do them faster, cheaper and better. And although I welcome VMware and VSAN to the party, I don’t think I’m really the target market: the product’s not really ready …
StorageBod, 12 Mar 2014
How to strangle a chicken - Aussie style

My work-from-home setup's better than the office. It's GLORIOUS

Storagebod I’ve been fairly used to the idea that my PC at home is substantially better than my work one; this has certainly been the case for me for more than a decade. I’m a geek and I spend more than most on my personal technology environment. However, it is no longer just my home PC. I’ve got better software tools and back-end systems …
StorageBod, 11 Mar 2014

Beware Abe Lincoln-looking code pros trying to sell you on LOBDOPs

Time spent at the QCon software developer conference and exhibition in London this week comes with certain guarantees. There will always be free T-shirts on every stand, gummy bears or jellybeans if you’re lucky, and a high footfall put down by the serious coding cognoscenti. And mixing among the Abe Lincoln “beard but no …
VSAN Tweet GA week of

Wanted: Virtual Steve Jobs to tell us one more thing about VSAN

It's a shame that VMware's VSAN launch didn't use Steve Jobs' trick of revealing “one more thing”, because there's one important detail missing from yesterday's event. That big thing is the price of the VSAN Ready Nodes and VSAN Ready Blocks it's been talking up for a while. VSAN Nodes are servers equipped with the 10Gbps NIC, …

Speaking in Tech: Really... $19bn. For WhatsApp?

Podcast speaking_in_tech Greg Knieriemen podcast enterprise Hosted by Greg Knieriemen, Ed Saipetch and Sarah Vela. This week, Greg, Eddie and Sarah are all together and chew the fat about Mobile World Congress, Carl Icahn's effect on business and THAT Facebook post which cost a family $80,000. Next week's episode will be recorded as …
Team Register, 5 Mar 2014

Mobile World Congress: It's not about the SHINY SHINY anymore

Comment The industry hog roast and hoedown that is Mobile World Congress used to be all about who had the shiniest new smartphone, tablet or random mobile-related gadget. But things have changed. Although there is still the normal (or perhaps abnormal) proportion of Lycra-clad mobile-touting booth babes to soak up the furtive gaze of …