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Hammer, spanner and screw

Remote unauthenticated OS re-install is a feature, not a bug, says Cisco

Cisco's taken umbrage at accusations that its Smart Install (SMI) protocol is vulnerable to abuse. The problem – if there is one, because “it's a feature, not a bug” – is that if netadmins are using SMI to auto-configure switches installed in branch offices they need to know it doesn't enforce authentication. If an attacker …
Migrating birds in the cloud

Riverbed bakes SD-WAN into WAN optimisation

Riverbed is hoping to push more large-scale Software-Defined WAN (SD-WAN) deployments with a data centre version of its SteelConnect, plus integration of the system into its SteelHead appliances under the new moniker "SteelHead SD". The SteelConnect SDI-5030 provides an SD-WAN-capable data centre gateway gets integration with …
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A spanner in the works: Google's cloud database hits beta, gets prices

Google's close to plugging a long-standing gap in its public cloud, with its Cloud Spanner distributed relational database hitting public beta. In January, we noted that Cloud Spanner, first detailed in a 2012 white paper, had landed as alpha in 2014 but was yet to become a commercial offering. The beta announced February 14 …
Australian Parliament House Canberra

Australian Tax Office's HPE SAN failed twice in slightly different ways

The Australia Taxation Office's HPE SAN failed twice, in different ways, when causing its infamous December and February outages that brought down online tax services on which citizens and accountants rely. And despite the Tax Office telling the world on its blog that it had “commissioned a new Storage Area Network (SAN) which …
Simon Sharwood, 14 Feb 2017
Koala on a rocket

Oracle reveals more rounded Australian *aas

Oracle has flicked the switch on everything-as-a-service in Australia. Big Red has offered software-as-a-service in Australia since 2012. Yesterday it turned on infrastructure-as-a-service and platform-as-a-service (IaaS and PaaS) too, splashing down its servers in a third-party bit barn rather than build its own. HPE adopted …
Simon Sharwood, 14 Feb 2017
TOkyo

Fujitsu has its own line of storage boxes, so, uh, why is it reselling XtremIO in Japan?

Why is Fujitsu touting all-flash XtremIO storage arrays in Japan when it has its own Eternus all-flash array product line? The Fujitsu business unit doing this is Fujitsu Managed Infrastructure Services (FMIS). Could Fujitsu say why it is doing this please, and whether other Fujitsu regions will start reselling XtremIO …
Chris Mellor, 14 Feb 2017
Two dollars

Nifty website claims to make comparing cloud costs simple. Good luck with that

CostStorage.com is a free public cloud cost calculator covering the Amazon, Azure, Google, IBM, BackBlaze and Oracle clouds and their US regions. It returns a single-dollar amount, taking into account storage needed, data transfer out, number of read and write requests, region, 'temperature' (hot, warm, cool, cold) and …
Chris Mellor, 14 Feb 2017
Cohesity_Santa_clara_office

Cloud is the future, wait, what? Cohesity cloud software now touted for on-prem gear

Cohesity has added two more products to its Data Platform set, a software-only virtual edition and a hyper-converged node. These join the existing three-box hardware and software set, C2100, C2300 and C2500, and the Cloud Edition product. The cloud product is essentially the same as the newly announced Virtual Edition (VE) – …
Chris Mellor, 14 Feb 2017
Rose

XPoint: Leaked Intel specs reveal 'launch-ready' SSD – report

Leaked Intel Optane SSD specs show much higher endurance and lower latency than NAND SSDs and good, but not great, IO performance. M.2 format 16GB and 32GB caching Optane drives have already been announced, but no add-in-card/SSD-type drives yet. However, the Chinese TechBang website says it has seen a data sheet for an Intel …
Chris Mellor, 14 Feb 2017

Roses are reddish, exam-takers more so: Cisco's test price hike's a smack to the torso

Spare a thought for those taking the Cisco CCNA assessments, who are facing a 32 per cent hike in fees this month without warning. One reader got in touch with El Reg to report they had noticed the increase as they were re-booking a failed exam at the weekend. That cost £100+VAT in January but is now £132+VAT when re-booked. …
Kat Hall, 14 Feb 2017
Older woman with shocked expression speaks on fixed line phone... photo by Shutterstock

Cisco's Visual Networking Index: Rather optimistic traffic numbers, aren't they?

Updated One of the toughest jobs in this industry is analyzing out the latest Cisco Visual Networking Index. First you have to get your head around all those numbers which are impossible to visualise, like exabytes. And then you start to see questions in the logic, and wonder if perhaps Cisco has gone too far off in one direction or …
Faultline, 14 Feb 2017
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It's over? Pat Gelsinger's post vSphere VMware NSX-T opportunity

Sysadmin Blog VMware has recently announced its financial results for 2016, and for a company that's not just satured but that leads the VM market, it had a very good year. Some of this is attributed to accepting that VMware can't beat AWS, so it might as well join them. But VMware's NSX Network Virtualization arguably led the way, doubling …
Trevor Pott, 14 Feb 2017
Oracle acrobatics in the cloud

Oracle is red, violets are blue, we hope you'll integrate biz analytics in our cloud soon

At Oracle, the future is cloud. If a product is not in the cloud, it's toast. It's that simple. The command has come down from on high to Oraclers. Be in the cloud or be finding a new job. Here's a great example of that diktat in full effect. Oracle has a thing called the Oracle Data Integrator Enterprise Edition. Well now you …
Oracle logo, image by GongTo via Shutterstock

Oracle teases 'easy-to-absorb' platform updates, wants 'all' your infrastructure biz

Oracle's popped out a short explanation for the sketchy SPARC/Solaris roadmap it slipped out in January. That roadmap mentioned “SPARC next” and “SPARC next+” without offering much detail other than a promise of faster speeds and bandwidth, more cache and updates to “software in silicon”. Now John Fowler, Oracle's executive …
Simon Sharwood, 14 Feb 2017
Fast Cloud

Clouds can compete with HPC, say boffins

The best clouds are genuinely competitive with do-it-yourself high performance computing – and Microsoft's top-tier Azure is the best of the lot. That's the conclusion from research conducted by Mohammad Mohammadi and Timur Bazhirov of Exabyte and offered as a pre-print at Arxiv. The two boffins took a simple approach to …
StoreServ_racks

HPE brags its latest 3PAR OS shrinkwrapper better protects data

HPE says its latest 3PAR OS, v 3.3.1, has better data reduction, faster iSCI networking, upgraded data protection and an extra helping of automation to help admin staff. The Adaptive Data Reduction (ADR) feature can reduce capacity needs by up to 75 per cent*, it claims. It includes both in-line deduplication and compression, …
Chris Mellor, 13 Feb 2017
HDD_heads

Unlucky WD Ultrastar drives are knackered, need replacing ASAP

El Reg has received an antipodean note that a number of Western Digital enterprise disk drives are having problems and need to be replaced. WD spokesman Paul Wooding said: We have identified a small, isolated population of HGST Ultrastar disk drives demonstrating higher than expected failure rates when used in specific …
Chris Mellor, 13 Feb 2017
A man buried in paperwork

Deafening silence as Smart Hosting support tickets keep piling up

Updated Customers of British cloud biz Smart Hosting are furious at the company's radio silence throughout its ongoing support tickets crises. The business has been left with "an incredibly high volume of support tickets" after merging with Krystal. Smart Hosting has been asking customers to keep non-urgent issues to themselves since …
Stealth_bomber

Say a stealthy 'hi' to Gluent, Tachyum and VAST Data

Analysis Three storage startups have hoved into view: Gluent, Tachyum and VAST Data. Gluent is a data silo virtualiser, liking RDBMS to Hadoop data for easier and simpler data analysis. Tachyum aims to, it appears, defeat Moore's Law by devising a new data processing architecture, and VAST Data, the stealthiest of the three, must be …
Chris Mellor, 13 Feb 2017
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Sales 'smasher' Simon Niesler lands role as SAP UK cloud supremo

SAP has moved the UK corporate brass in a move that could propel cloud sales, The Reg has learned. The giant, which in January adjusted its existing 2020 full-year cloud sales target, has appointed an internal rising star to lead all UK cloud sales. Simon Niesler has become vice president of UK cloud, a role spanning HANA …
Gavin Clarke, 13 Feb 2017
cloud

Cisco sacrifices iron, pushes gateway protection into cloud

Cisco's decided that the network perimeter is the wrong place for a Web gateway, so it's floating one into the cloud. Switchzilla, bowing to the inevitable decomposition of products into software, is pouring scorn on hardware gateways as inadequate and insecure as part of the pitch for its new "Umbrella" product. As a cloud- …
CSIRO's PAF being hoisted into position at Parkes

Interview: AARNet's Peter Elford on Australia's national research infrastructure

Australia is re-crafting the roadmap that guides its national research infrastructure, a task that covers everything from the network to the nation's high performance computing systems. The roadmap from the Office of the Chief Scientist was offered for public comment late last year. Guided by the hand of chief scientist Alan …

Take cover! Storage news barrage incoming

Incoming! Boom, boom and boom again – storage news announcements hit the wires in a relentless barrage. Here's a few we've received showing developments in data protection, cloud storage, hyper-converged storage, the dregs of flash memory and more. Acronis Backup 12 now includes backup for Office 365 and VMware vSphere 6.5. …
Chris Mellor, 10 Feb 2017
Prison

Crims in £160m broadband scam facing 44 years of porridge

Four men, who conned Barclays Bank and Belgian banking group KBC out of £160m in a super fast broadband scam, have today been sentenced to a collective 44 years in the clink. The individuals presented bogus broadband contracts to the banks, which were tricked into issuing huge loans to H20 Networks through Total Asset Finance …
Kat Hall, 10 Feb 2017

Talking to Tintri's Alexa speechbot might not actually be all that crazy

Interview Tintri's Alexa speechbot is no piece of eye-candy gimmickry. CTO and founder Dr Kieran Harty says it will enable users to do more with less hassle as system management gets automated. We quizzed Harty on the how-and-why of its development. What is the overall background case for implementing an Alexa interface for Tintri array …
Chris Mellor, 10 Feb 2017

Oracle settles court spat with fired cloud 'sales inflation whistleblower'

Oracle has reached a settlement with a former finance manager who alleged she had been fired for refusing to follow what she believed to be unlawful accounting practices that bumped up the IT giant's cloud numbers. In a filing [PDF] on Wednesday, the District Court of Northern California was told the dispute between Oracle and …

Is flash really the game-changer the marketeers say it is?

Study How many stories have you read about all-flash arrays taking over your data centre or computer room? You've probably heard this line even more than you’ve read about how everything is moving to the cloud, how IoT will change the world next week, or how cyber-attacks are going to bring civilisation to its knees by Easter. Flash …
Tony Lock, 10 Feb 2017
Bitdefender and Citrix's hypervisor introspection in action

Citrix, Bitdefender in Xen-only virtual security double-team

Citrix and Bitdefender have revealed a security tool that runs inside the hypervisor – in this case, Citrix's own XenServer – to detect advanced persistent threats running in guest VMs. The tool pulls off this trick by inspecting the state of memory used by guest VMs. If the “Hypervisor Introspection” (HVI) tool sees telltale …
Simon Sharwood, 10 Feb 2017

Instapaper in 31-hour outage, says it needs a week to restore all data

Web scrapbook Instapaper has suffered a 30-plus hour outage and is warning of a week-long restore time. Instapaper allows users to save "all of the interesting articles, videos, cooking recipes, song lyrics, or whatever else you come across while browsing” and then makes those clippings available on any device on which you …
Simon Sharwood, 10 Feb 2017
polygonal canary

Google has a canary problem: One clocked off and crocked its cloud

Google's explained why new cloudy virtual machines in its cloud engine couldn't connect to the world for a couple of hours in January: a canary didn't fall off its perch, so the company was unaware of a problem. The incident wasn't major: for a tick over two hours on January 30th newly created Google Compute Engine instances, …
Simon Sharwood, 10 Feb 2017
Image by Dr Flash http://www.shutterstock.com/gallery-182053p1.html

Dell's XtremIO has a new reseller in Japan – its all-flash rival Fujitsu

Check this baby out. Fujitsu_XtremIO_webpage What's that we can just about make out at the bottom? Computer, enhance! Fujitsu_XtremIO_webpage_close_up Well, well, well. Fujitsu is reselling Dell XtremIO all-flash arrays in Japan. And alongside its ETERNUS all-flash arrays as well. The Fujitsu Japan XtremIO webpages …
Chris Mellor, 9 Feb 2017
Fidelma_Russo

EMC exile Russo scales Iron Mountain to be crowned CTO

Fidelma Russo has been appointed CTO at data management firm Iron Mountain, Storage Newsletter reports. Russo resigned from her position as SVP and GM of the VMAX Business Unit at Dell In December, when Dell EMC president David Goulden reorganised the core products group. She reported to Core Technologies Division president …
Chris Mellor, 9 Feb 2017
First XC40, photo: Met Office

OK, 2016 wasn't the best, but look for a buyer? That's Cray

+Comment A poor year for Cray was rescued by its fourth 2017 quarter’s results. Q4 2016 Q4 2015 Change Full 2016 Year Full 2015 Year Change Revenues $346,600,000 $267,500,000 29.6% $629,800,000 $724,700,000 13.1% $51,800,000 $20,300,000 155.2% $10,600,000 $27,500,000 61.5% Full 2016 year revenues went down 13 per cent …
Chris Mellor, 9 Feb 2017
Surprised cat photo via shutterstock

Cattle that fail, not pets that purr – the future of servers

Microsoft, Amazon, Google, others all telling us to move server loads to the cloud. Most of us with on-premise servers haven't designed things in a cloud friendly way and - call us old sentimentalists - have heaped time, love and workloads on our tin. Thus, today, we talk of such servers as “pets” while cloud providers talk of …
Adam Fowler, 9 Feb 2017
Sparks, image via Shutterstock

Memory1: All right, Sparky, here's the deal: We've sorted your DRAM runtimes

Analysis Chinese server vendor Inspur has cut Spark workload runtimes in half by bulking out DRAM with Diablo Technologies' Memory1 technology. Inspur and Diablo say users can achieve more work per server and reduce the time needed to process larger datasets than servers with DRAM alone. Memory1 is a 128GB DDR4 module using NAND flash …
Chris Mellor, 9 Feb 2017
trolls

Microsoft touts cheap-ish anti-patent troll protection shield for Azure-hosted devs

Patent trolls are a growing problem, and Microsoft thinks that it has the solution – an affordable-ish protection scheme for Azure customers. Under the newly announced Azure IP Advantage program, users of Microsoft's cloud compute service can sign up and get the backing of Redmond's arsenal of more than 10,000 technology …
Iain Thomson, 9 Feb 2017
NBN truck on Mount Cotton

nbn™ tops AU$400 million half-year revenue

Australia's National Broadband Network is closing in on a million active fibre-to-the-premises users and topped AU$400 million for the first half of its 2017 financial year. First-half results for network-building company nbn™, announced here, also reveal nearly 450,000 active fibre-to-the-node (FTTN) users as of December 31, …

Tosh's new workhorse drive: Not too desktop, not too enterprise

Toshiba has a new desktop and low-end NAS disk drive, the MN series. It comes in a 3.5-inch enclosure, with 4, 6 and 8TB capacities, is air-filled, spins at 7,200rpm, has a 6Gbps SATA interface, and a 1 million-hour mean time before failure rating. We can view it as an update on the MC04, MD04 and MG04 series drives. The MN …
Chris Mellor, 8 Feb 2017

Cisco polishes HALO, flashes enlarged HyperFlex

Cisco has announced two all-flash HyperFlex systems with an up to sixfold performance improvement. HyperFlex is Cisco's hyper-converged* infrastructure appliance (HCIA) offering, based on OEM'd Springpath HALO software, with Cisco's UCS server and Nexus networking components. These are, were, hybrid flash and disk systems. …
Chris Mellor, 8 Feb 2017
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Dublin court to decide EU's future relationship with Trump's America

The future of the relationship between the European Union and President Trump's United States is being decided in a Dublin court hearing which is expected to continue for the next three weeks. While the president has backed away from previous comments regarding NATO and torture, his administration has offered no suggestion of …
Openio_CEO_Laurent_Denel

Small but perfectly formed: Dailymotion's object storage odyssey

Case study Paris-based Dailymotion is the world's second largest video sharing website after YouTube and its three-stage storage history has transitioned from a reliable scale-out filer, to a maturing object storage startup, to an even smaller firm in pursuit of scale and performance. The story starts with Isilon, progresses through …
Chris Mellor, 8 Feb 2017

Kaminario pumps up K2 all-flash array processor speed and SSD capacity

Kaminario has more than doubled array capacity and speed with the sixth generation of its K2 all-flash array, mainly by using higher capacity SSDs and faster controller processors. It's also improved compression and its storage assurance program. A K2 array is composed from one to four K-Blocks, each having two active:active …
Chris Mellor, 8 Feb 2017