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Wanna gobble Google's custom chips? Now you can – its Cloud TPUs at $6.50 an hour

Google’s Cloud Tensor Processing Unit (TPU) chips are now available to rent on its cloud platform as a beta-grade service. The Cloud TPU – formerly known as the TPU2 – is the second generation of Google’s homegrown math accelerators geared towards AI and machine learning workloads that rely on TensorFlow. While the first …
Katyanna Quach, 12 Feb 2018
People whispering

How back of server pack rat Inspur has sailed into the top-three slot

Analysis Behind the numbers in Gartner's third 2017 quarter server tracker are some startling revelations concerning Cisco's server pricing and Inspur's arrival as a top-three supplier. So what can we glean from this table? Inspur-presented Gartner Q3 CY2017 server numbers Inspur Seeing Inspur in number three was a surprise. How has …
Chris Mellor, 12 Feb 2018
Oracle OpenWorld cloud

Oracle: We've stuffed automation in 'pretty much' all our services

Oracle has announced plans to roll out its self-described autonomous technology to all of its Platform-as-a-Service products. The company launched its self-driving database, available in the latest version, 18c, at the OpenWorld conference last year. At the time, execs promised customers "a freedom from drudgery", as the …
Rebecca Hill, 12 Feb 2018
Cornwall: A barefoot surfer in a wetsuit walks past a clump of bushes with a 8-metre high "telescopic" 4G mast in the middle.

Vodafone boasts 200Mbps with 4G mini mast in Cornish trial

Vodafone has unveiled an eight-metre high "telescopic" 4G mast, intended to boost speeds in rural areas to 200Mpbs, following a trial in Porthcurno, Cornwall, UK. Developed in partnership with infrastructure biz CommScope, the kit is aimed at rural hotels, leisure centres, retail parks and tourist attractions. Vodafone says it …
Kat Hall, 12 Feb 2018
Meerkats, photo via Shutterstock

How do you win at HCI? It's SimpliVity ... or maybe not, right Dell?

Analysis What a difference a year makes: just 12 little months ago HPE was ruling the integrated systems roost, but fast forward and it has slipped behind as Nutanix and Dell EMC streak ahead - the latter with help from its VSAN gear. In the latest Gartner HCI Magic Quadrant (MQ), hyperconverger Nutanix is bossing the HCI market, with …
Chris Mellor, 12 Feb 2018
Cloud moving at a snail's pace

Meltdown's Linux patches alone add big load to CPUs, and that's just one of four fixes

Netflix engineer, dTrace guru and famed shouter at hard disk drives Brendan Gregg has cooked up a "microbenchmark" to assess the Linux kernel page table isolation (KPTI) patch for the Meltdown CPU design flaw and come up with predictions of significant-but-manageable performance degradation. Gregg's explained on Friday that …
Simon Sharwood, 12 Feb 2018
shutterstock_236128771

5G won't just be fast, it'll do the ML-fuelled self-optimisation thing

There's a race to apply machine learning to networking applications (especially for 5G), and as so often happens in periods of frenzied development, there's an emerging standardisation gap the International Telecommunications Union hopes to fix. Following the January Machine Learning and 5G workshop in Geneva, the ITU has …
Dr Strangelove bomb

Ruskie boffins blasted for using nuke bomb lab's supercomputer to mine crypto-rubles

Engineers at Russia's top nuclear weapons lab have been arrested – after the eggheads were caught using one of the supercomputers to mine cryptocurrency. The government-run research facility at Sarov, southeast of Moscow, has been developing nuke bomb technology since the 1940s. It is a closed town, meaning you need a permit …
Iain Thomson, 09 Feb 2018
BOX OF ASSORTED DOUGHNUTS (AND A CRONUT). Photo by Shutterstock

A storage baker's dozen: We spill the tea on the firms, the faces, the dough

What went on in storageland this week, you ask? Keep your saucer level, but we had Cisco saying its kit will be needed because the cloud is spreading, Delphix snuggling up to SAP, Zerto going even more multi-cloud, plus a good few smaller items. Cisco Cloud Index Study By 2021, 94 per cent of workloads and compute instances …
Chris Mellor, 09 Feb 2018
open window in an office building... just the right size for a person to fall out

BOFH: We want you to know you have our full support

Episode 2 "NGGGGAAARRRGGGHHH!" the PFY says, slamming his mouse onto the desk several times. "Problems?" I ask. "Yes, I'm trying to get pre-sales support for a product but I'm just going round and round in the website which sends me to a Virtual Agent that can only interpret my question in two incorrect ways. It then suggests I can ' …
Simon Travaglia, 09 Feb 2018
ee 4g antenna

EE unveils shoebox-sized router to boost Brit bumpkin broadband

EE is launching a "shoebox"-sized 4G antenna, which it claims could bring coverage to 580,000 UK homes in rural areas. The 4GEE Home Router contains an external antenna, which can be fixed to the outside of houses and is connected to the 4GEE Home Router in the home via a cable. It is intended for areas receiving poor …
Kat Hall, 09 Feb 2018
people queueing

Got some fancy new flash in the works, huh Micron? Join the QLC

Later this year Micron plans to release quad-level cell flash drives that encroach on the nearline disk drive market. QLC flash stores 4bits/cell, whereas TLC stores 3, adding a third more capacity. A 6TB TLC SSD could become an 8TB QLC SSD using this technology. QLC flash has a shorter working life than TLC flash and is …
Chris Mellor, 09 Feb 2018
Elastic bands multi-coloured. Photo by Shutterstock

You've got a yottabyte on your hands: How analytics is changing storage

For all of its advances, the IT sector’s first five decades could be characterised as the electronic storing of systems of record. The move to the electronic era saw paper ledgers, tax returns, bank statements stored and archived safely and legally on machines instead of paper files. Rows of data were worked on in …
Ambrose McNevin, 09 Feb 2018
Treadmill

Paging all Microsoft System Center users: Your treadmill is here

Microsoft has delivered the first Semi-Annual Channel version of System Center. Redmond's Semi-Annual Channel sees Windows Server and System Center given upgrades twice a year, but with only 18 months of support. A Long-Term Servicing Channel (LTSC) will publish new versions of the product about every three years, with five …
Simon Sharwood, 09 Feb 2018

US Senate mulls giving Huawei and ZTE the Kaspersky treatment

Both halves of the US Congress are now mulling draft laws that would ban American government workers from using phones, network switches and other gear built by Chinese communications giants ZTE and Huawei. Senators Tom Cotton (R-AR) and Little Marco Rubio (R-FL) introduced this week Senate bill 2391, which would prohibit …
Shaun Nichols, 08 Feb 2018
Burning 5G against dark background

EU digital commish to 5G folk: Improving mobile data-rate, guys? Really?

A European commissioner raised concerns in a private letter to mobile operators and the network infrastructure industry – seen by The Register – that the 5G project is not working out according to plan. Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society Mariya Gabriel said in the letter – sent early in December last year – to the …
Kane Mumford, 08 Feb 2018
Micron_UDIMM_cards

Micron cranks revenue forecast up by $275m amid flash, DRAM boom

It's boom time in Micron flash and DRAM land with increased revenue expectations for the current quarter. And it has hired a new CFO. The guidance for Micron's second fiscal 2018 quarter, which ends March 1, is now for revenues between $7.2bn and $7.35bn. The earlier expectation was $6.8bn to $7.2bn. This is a $275m rise at …
Chris Mellor, 08 Feb 2018
Man brandishing broken bottle

Let the compute see the data... to smash storage networking bottlenecks

Part 1 Bringing compute to data sounds like a great way to bypass storage access bottlenecks but progress is difficult because of software issues, the need to develop special hardware and a non-x86 environment. As data amounts grow from terabyte to petabyte and beyond, the time it takes to bring data to the processors is becoming an …
Chris Mellor, 08 Feb 2018
Fibre, image via Shutterstock

TalkTalk to splash £1.5bn laying full fibre on 3 million doorsteps

TalkTalk plans to bring full fibre speeds of 1Gbps to three million premises in the UK, by creating an independent company with a total investment of around £1.5bn. Under the plans, the entity would be 20 per cent owned by TalkTalk and 80 per cent by infrastructure investor Infracapital. The ISP is also raising £200m in new …
Kat Hall, 08 Feb 2018
Cisco hyperscale cloud forecast

Hyperscale oligarchs to rule the cloud as the big get bigger, and the small ... you won't care

The latest iteration of Cisco's Global Cloud Index has painted a picture of an even more massively oligarchic future cloud. Switchzilla predicts rough seas ahead for all but the biggest cloud operators, if the index [PDF] is any guide: the company reckons the mere 24 operators that count as “hyperscale” will dominate cloud …
cloud

Open NFV kit and software gets verification program

The community working to develop open network function virtualisation has crafted a solution certification suite and published its associated test software. The OVP – OPNFV Verified Program – is the spawn of the Linux Foundation's Open Platform for NFV group. The program covers the gamut of technologies in an NFV (Network …
NBN truck side with First Aid sticker

nbn 's CVC discounts worked - ISPs splashed for 38 per cent more bandwidth

Australia's internet service providers have responded to discounts in the Connectivity Virtual Circuit (CVC) by buying more bandwidth for their users, but the news isn't all good because they're still offering just 1.53 Mbps per user. That last figure comes from the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) which …
Simon Sharwood, 08 Feb 2018
Intel Xeon logo

Monday: Intel defector touts Arm server chip. Wednesday: Intel shows off new server chips

Intel will today add the D-2100 x86-64 system-on-chip to its lineup of Xeon D x86-64 processors, billing it as its "fastest low-power edge processor." The Xeon D CPU family is aimed at powering web servers, high-speed cellular broadband towers, regional and branch office systems, warm file storage in the cloud, data center …
Shaun Nichols, 07 Feb 2018
globe with magnifying glass

CLOUD Act hits Senate to lube up US access to data stored abroad

Tech giants including Microsoft, Google and Apple have given a proposed US law on overseas data sharing the thumbs-up. The bipartisan Clarifying Lawful Overseas Use of Data Act (PDF), introduced to the Senate yesterday, aims to iron out confusion around which laws apply when governments want access to data stored in the cloud …
Rebecca Hill, 07 Feb 2018

Mobe network Three's 'Make The Air Fair' ads deemed 'misleading'

Three's campaign for a spectrum cap on mobile operators has been deemed "misleading" by the UK Advertising Standards Authority for implying it was run by an independent body. Three had wanted Blighty's communications regulator Ofcom to impose a 30 per cent cap on spectrum ownership, having waged a strange campaign last year …
Kat Hall, 07 Feb 2018
Tianjin crater

Infinidat techie: Let me tell you a thing or two about ruler-format SSDs

Interview We spoke to several people about Intel ruler and Samsung mini-ruler SSDs and thought we'd have some fun getting a point of view from Infinidat. Our expectation was that, as INFINIDAT uses disk for capacity storage and says you don't need all-flash arrays for performance, we might not even get a reply. We were wrong, and we …
Chris Mellor, 07 Feb 2018

Rubrik swallows Datos IO, shuffles in distributed DB backup

Extremely well-funded startup Rubrik has bought distributed database backer-up and fellow startup Datos IO. Datos IO's semantic deduplication RecoverX technology has been applied to protecting big data file systems, such as Hadoop, cloud-native data sources and distributed NoSQL databases. It recently extended its technology …
Chris Mellor, 06 Feb 2018

Dell goes on Epyc server journey with AMD

Dell is producing one- and two-socket rackmount servers using AMD Epyc processors alongside its Xeon SP server family. The Epyc processor is said to be faster than equivalent Xeons. There are three PowerEdge AMD-powered servers: the R6415, R7415, and R7425. These accompany the PowerEdge 14G R640 and R740 Xeon SP servers in …
Chris Mellor, 06 Feb 2018
Ampere_chip

Ex-Chipzilla exec Arms biz to SoC it to Intel in the data centre

Carlyle Group-backed Ampere Computing, run by ex-Intel president Renée James, has launched a server-grade Arm system-on-a-chip to take on Chipzilla. The SoC has a 32 64-bit Armv8 CPU cores, operating at up to 3.3GHz with turbo mode support. There are private 32KB of code and 32KB of data L1 caches per core, 256KB L2 caches for …
Chris Mellor, 06 Feb 2018
Bundled files, image via Shutterstock

Tower ProLiants on the warpath: HPE takes on Dell 'n' white-box gang in SMB space

HPE has taken on Dell and the white boxers in the desktop and tower server space with promises of special, low-priced deals and faster ships. It has a new range of entry-level bundles of tower servers, software and Pointnext services from channel partners. These are intended to increase the partner sales cycle, improve attach …
Chris Mellor, 06 Feb 2018

Ghost in the DCL shell: OpenVMS, touted as ultra reliable, had a local root hole for 30 years

Forget Meltdown and Spectre. Someone's found a local privilege escalation in the operating system world's elderly statesman OpenVMS when running it on VAX and Alpha processors. On Itanium CPUs, the same bug can be exploited to crash a process. More details on the flaw, which has been given the designation CVE-2017-17482, are …
John Leyden, 06 Feb 2018
Falling asleep in front of computer

Another week, another Cisco-security-kit-needs-a-patch story

Cisco's again asked owners of Adaptive Security Appliances or Firepower Threat Defense Software to patch, after it turned up a new DDOS problem that last patches didn't address. Owners of such kit were in patch-fast mode last week after Switchzilla revealed a “crafted XML attack” that exposed webvpn's interface to the 'net, …

Dell soups up low-end Data Domain deduper

Down in the Dell there is a new Data Domain box – a smallish, entry-level one – the DD3300. It is a 2U rackmount chassis with 3TB or 4TB SAS disk drives providing up to 32TB of usable capacity, said to be 1.6PB after deduplication (logical capacity) and data can be ingested at 7TB/hour using Data Domain Boost. If a backend …
Chris Mellor, 05 Feb 2018
Magic cloud castle

You've only gone and committed to becoming cloud native

The IT department's transition from being an on-premises owner and manager of an IT equipment stack which provisions and plans data compute, storage and networking to being a responsive services provider is a 2018 priority for many. Yet it is a bold step to migrate data management to the cloud in a way that delivers the …
Ambrose McNevin, 05 Feb 2018
aerial shot of sk hynix flash fab

Plunk: SK Hynix drops 72-layer 3D NAND on enterprise SSD market

SK Hynix, currently focused on client SSDs, is posed to enter the enterprise SSD market with 72-layer 3D NAND tech. It has developed 512Gb flash chips with this technology, and built an enterprise-class SSD using its own controller and firmware to provide 4TB of capacity. SK Hynix is not saying whether the SSD uses TLC (3bits/ …
Chris Mellor, 05 Feb 2018
The Royal Courts of Justice in London

Hortonworks accuses ex-sales bod of stealing customers for new job

Updated Court documents filed in Hortonworks’ lawsuit against a former sales manager in the UK detailed accusations that he had allegedly nicked contracts for himself and his next employer, The Register can reveal. The particulars of the case, filed on December 13 and received at the High Court on February 1*, show the Apache Hadoop …
Richard Priday, 05 Feb 2018

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