* Posts by lset

19 posts • joined 15 Aug 2012

Chap joins elite support team, solves what no one else can. Is he invited back? Is he f**k


Being honest with time frames...

Once did a project scope for a large public sector organisation. We were called in to a big meeting to present our plan with a lot of people in the room who we didn't know (our big mistake). After running through the analysis and giving comparisons to similar projects we gave them a timeline of 6 months, which was roughly double what it should have taken but we couldn't guarantee they would complete their side of UAT on time.

A week later we found out that we had been kicked out of the account for "over-promising and lying" to senior management (we knew the techies within the organisation well).

Turns out a similar project was already in the works in a different part of the organisation, the owner of said project had been in our meeting. They were currently 2 years in and not even close to being finished. After being grilled by his bosses, he covered his ass by saying that we didn't know what we were doing and that it was significantly more complex than what we had stated (it really really wasn't).

Unsurprisingly he was an external contractor on a stupid rate and was hated by the internal IT team, but was old friends with someone in upper management.

This is why I hate doing work for the public sector.

Linus Torvalds in sweary rant about punctuation in kernel comments


From my experience, and I can only speak based on that, the use and formatting of comments is really important. All documentation is important in all aspects of IT and should be take seriously.

On the flip side, Linus once again acts as the directory definition of "its not what you say, but how you say it". I respect his work but there are ways of writing a stern email without resorting to that language -__-

So Pure Storage did its IPO thing and investors blinked – now what?


Re: This will be a slow burn...

Working in the UK channel here, I'll bite.

First, being aggressive in the channel isn't unethical, it's perfectly fine if your product does what it says. Start Ups need to get mind share out there because, and no offence to anyone in sales, sales guys will only ever sell the last thing that came across there desk, or what they've known has made them money in the past. The too many resellers argument is absolute bull, everyone sells HP, Dell, Cisco etc. Do they have too many revellers? No. That's why things like accredited partner discounts exist so that you can't all position the same product.

What is unethical in the channel is:

- over promising and underdelivering what the product can do (making everyone look bad)

- poaching large deals from resellers for internal sales

- dropping the ball on promised support

Your mileage may vary but I personally haven't had any of those things from Nimble.

As for the Pure IPO, this was kind of expected. Just have to see how the market goes. Their support staff have been excellent whenever I've had to deal with them so they're alright in my books.

Nimble flashes the all-flash array as ‘intense’ consolidation period approaches


Re: Not so fast...

As mentioned below by another poster, dedupe isn't exactly something you want for normal production workloads. It really only suits certain types (e.g. persistent VDI/RDSH) and is only a by-product of expensive hardware. Flash is coming down in price every quarter, we are at the point where we can probably have AFAs large enough and cheap enough where it isn't needed.

CASL was/is designed for Flash. If you have a look at the actual arch of the controllers and system and how it handles write commits/reads etc. then there is actually all that much they need to do to make it work fine as an AFA. Out of the younger storage vendors, I personally think Nimble are one of the stronger ones. The next couple of years will be interesting in the storage industry in any case.

Wikibon takes Fusion-io founder's FaME to logical conclusion


Unless my memory is not serving me correctly (it happens), HP have been/are working on a version of Linux to address this in line with their memresistor tech.

Like you said, the idea of having only one pool of low latency non-volatile storage isn't a new one, this just seems like Flash players trying to prolong their product and get over the transition issue that we will eventually have to stuff like memresistor (or whatever becomes the industry standard).

The joy of six: VMware ecstatic after finally emitting new vSphere


I hate Flash as much as the next techie, but I've been using the new web client through out the beta and it is a LOT better than in any of the 5 variants. It's actually usable now and pretty fast. Besides from everything I've heard from them and elsewhere, HTML5 is on the cards (it's already used for the EVO:RAIL GUI).

The install for vCenter is also now way simpler and you can use postgres with the Windows installer so no need for SQL (well at least for the actual vCenter component).

Licensing changes mean Redmond's IoT plan brings cheap VDI


Re: waste of time

Agreed with Fuzz. Still requiring SA is stupid, especially as you pay above and beyond to have a thin client with Windows Embedded anyway.

VDA is now the single biggest road block to VDI for any organisation. It's a joke. MS somehow think they are getting a piece of a pie they don't deserve, when all they are doing is accelerating the push for people to have all of their applications delivered separately from the OS and be done with even needing Windows at all.

VDI a 'delightful' experience... Really?


Re: Inetersting points raised

As a VDI consultant you are 100% right. There are plenty of ways to deal with a range of different users and VMware/Citrix/MS all have ways for handling it. For example, if you are going down the Citrix route you might decide that all of your main admin staff are perfectly fine on Shared Hosted 2008 R2/2012 sessions, whilst giving non-persistent VDI to the users that are a bit heavier but can still have all of their apps virtualised/data elsewhere and then finally persistent desktops for your high end users (designers, techies etc.). There is nothing stopping you from mixing and matching within your environment.

Really you get around "one architecture to rule them all" by planning, planning and more planning. Implementing the infrastructure for VDI is quick and straight forward, where people neglect to spend time is understanding all of their end users and balancing just enough flexibility into the environment so that they can move people to a different usage model without spending too much (and going for a node based approach for the hosts/storage so that the design of the environment can scale linearly). I know it was iterated through the video posted but you really have to plan and design to the absolute eyeballs with anything involving EUC. THEN it will work.

It's storage's Holy Grail: VSANs, PSANs and virtual silos


I can see where you are coming from...

But haven't similar products to do what you are describing existed before? Doesn't Hitachi have their Unified Storage product (HUS VM)? It's just horribly expensive. Atlantis have something kind of similar, where is combines RAM and any backend storage (DAS, NAS, VSAN or PSAN) to produce an NFS share back to the hypervisor (and it gives absurd performance in some cases): http://www.atlantiscomputing.com/products/usx.

Also worth pointing out that one of the blogs asked why the limit on VSAN was 35 disks per node. From talking with the VMware guys, 35 disks is just what VSAN is certified for (it was originally only 8 disks and then 16 in the Beta), it's not an actual limit. Pretty sure VMware will turn around on a 1.1 or 1.2 release and have just certified a higher disk capacity. Plus I'm sure that limitation isn't a top priority for them at the moment, seeing as EMC already have ScaleIO which is hypvervisor agnostic and can grow to stupid sizes.

Let... the SAN shine: 2013 – the year of virtual storage area networks


Re: Licensing

Also I would never recommend anything less than a three node cluster in any virtualised environment. If you bring a host down for updates/maintenance then your entire environment will be running only on one box which is never desired. I would always quote three lower specced hosts, in which case quoting three nodes for any virtual SAN is enough to ensure resilience (in the case of quorum).


Re: Licensing

Not all of them are licensed by node, I can think a couple off the top of my head that are licensed by capacity (HP's VSA and EMC's ScaleIO). Also VSAN licensing is kind of unknown at the moment until VMware bring the product out of beta.


I'd politely disagree about HP's VSA. For small/medium business it's great. It's super cheap, can still scale to a reasonable size and now features tiering. Throw in a few SSDs and turn on AO and performance is pretty decent. Usable space due to network RAID isn't great but I certainly would not put HP's VSA in the same category as VMware's.

Agreed about VSAN though, still far too much of a beta product. However if VMware do something like put it in with the Horizon View bundle then I can see it being really useful in VDI environments (and would be a good extra feature against Citrix).

Not really a Virtual SAN but my favourite Virtual Storage Appliance at the moment is definitely Atlantis (the persistent model). If they expand beyond VDI and bring it to stuff like SQL then it could be really great for certain use cases.

Death of the business Desktop


Re: Post PC era

Uh 1000 physical PCs for a call centre are easy to manage than 8 servers and running everything through something like XenDesktop and RES? You are kidding right? MS licensing might be a b*tch but if you are doing non-persistent VDI then you can definitely get to a similar cost as a physical PC deployment with a LOT of added benefits (easier image and application management, hot desking, remote connectivity). Large enterprises is exactly where VDI plays its biggest strengths.

It is not about cost to performance benefit, it's about cost to management benefit. You just need to make sure that the end user experience is the same level as on their PC, which is doable. VDI projects fail or are too expensive at the moment because of bad consultants/resellers. Not because of the cost of the tin or the tech itself. And flash storage does not work out more expensive in the VDI world than disks. Maybe if you are looking at having an all flash array or putting SSDs in something like a 3PAR but in that case you are doing it wrong. Use cheap local SSDs or something like Pure that has good dedup (seeing as most VDI data is identical). You don't need capacity, just enough performance.


As noted above, licensing is the real issue for VDI. So much so that VMware are now supporting 2008 as a desktop OS just so service providers can get around MS's absolutely archaic licensing. The improvement of storage is definitely one of the reasons why VDI is taking off more (don't forget stuff like Atlantis, Pernix, CBRC being in View and even the ability to use local SSDs for non-persistent desktops in both View and XenDesktop now). The other main reason why VDI will be considered more over the next 18 months is that we FINALLY have support for decent virtualised graphics. vGPU is freaking awesome from what I have played with so far.

At the end of the day VDI is a stop gap anyway, the holy grail is to have all applications virtualised, we are just a long way from that. In any case, MS will continue to try to cripple VDI sales with their licensing until RDS can compete with XenDesktop and View.




As one of my friends just pointed out, he's done a damn good job of getting rid of everyone who could have replaced him. Then he decides to jump ship. Excellent job Ballmer.

Amazon-bashed HMV calls in administrators, seeks buyer


Re: Amazon is not evil

You can buy a decent position on a search engine.

You can't buy trust.

People are happier to buy items from a smaller retailer through the Amazon marketplace because they trust the feedback system on Amazon and how the marketplace is vetted. This is the same reason why places like ebay and etsy exist. People trust the Amazon 'brand' and so trust to buy things through their marketplace. People should set up their own websites etc. but to say that Amazon doesn't offer a service that the internet in and of itself doesn't already provide is incorrect.

HP slips out ProLiant DL560 Gen8 four-socketeer


Re: Err, know the industry much? Or just getting paid by HP?

Personally I would rather have hardly any local storage and know that I had some decent cooling going through a 2U box that had 4 procs in it. Maybe that's just my personal preference though. For something as dense as this, surely you will be hooking this up to some form of external storage anyway.

Also your comment about the PCI-e slots is misleading. The 7th slot in the R820 is used for the RAID controller, HP already has their controller built onto the motherboard. In effect they both have 6 usable slots for HBAs, NICs etc. but like you said, hey ho.


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