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Comment: Re:Go on the internet and find a DLT drive (Score 3, Informative) 983

by ewilts (#46465185) Attached to: How Do You Backup 20TB of Data?

You're dating yourself. LTO-5 is 1.5TB native, 3TB compressed at $25 per tape. LTO-6 is 2.5TB native and 6.25TB compressed. Both of those compressed numbers are using the built-in compression in the drive.

A 10-pack of LTO-5 tapes is about $250.

You can easily encrypt the tapes and tape them offsite. You can keep a copy onsite and offsite. You're simply not doing that with disk.

Your speed is also off - an LTO-5 can write at 280MB/sec. The limiting factor is not the write time on the media but the read time from disk.

Restore times are typically limited by the write rate on the destination raidset, not the read rate from tape.

Comment: Re:If you want to hoard bits... (Score 4, Informative) 983

by ewilts (#46465115) Attached to: How Do You Backup 20TB of Data?

The dataset isn't that huge. Tape can write at speed at least as fast as disk - LTO-5 writes at up to 280MB/sec - far faster than you can read the source at which isn't likely to be fast disk. The seek for a single-file restore will be slower than disk but after the initial seek, the read will be as fast as from a typical archive disk (no, you're not archiving 20TB to SSD, nor are you storing the source data on SSD either)

However, the change rate for this application is likely to be low. That makes it very feasible to do random testing from the new backups where a minute to do the tape mount/seek is not a problem. You won't be writing more than a single tape in any single run (LTO-5 is ~1.5 TB of uncompressed data).

For $2K, you'll have the LTO-5 drive. Add $500 for 20 tapes and you can back up the entire set (once) plus a bunch of incrementals. I haven't done the math with LTO-6 which is faster and holds more data. If you want multiple generations, tape is a lot cheaper per TB than disk. The initial drive cost hurts but after that, the price is good at $15/TB or so.

Comment: Re:If you want to hoard bits... (Score 1) 983

by ewilts (#46463523) Attached to: How Do You Backup 20TB of Data?

That's a lousy answer. Tape *does* work. It can be slower than disk, but disk is not the *only* way to have a usable backup. Tape is not dead.

Tape works. Disk works. Offsite replication works. Do the math for how much data you have and how much bandwidth you have or can afford, and do the calculations on how much data you really have to back up. In many cases, recreating the data can be significantly cheaper than backup it up and restoring it. If you have your original CDs and DVDs, put them in an offsite location. If you have a disaster, you can have them re-ripped for a LOT cheaper than backing them up.

I've help run a multi-petabyte data center with backups to tape and they worked. Everything written to tape was restorable. I currently run a multi-petabyte data center and replicate everything to disk in an offsite location. It also works. Neither is cheap.

Figure out what part of the data is important to you and how long you can wait to get it back. If a fire burns down your house but you need the data back in minutes or hours, then tape is obviously not the answer but then neither is DVDs or any cloud provider.

There is NO single answer that's good for everybody. It's a cost/benefit/risk analysis that every first year comp sci student better become familiar with.

Comment: Happy ending (Score 1) 3

by ewilts (#44767899) Attached to: Returning a found cellphone?

I talked to a really nice lady - Andrea - at the AT&T store in Cedar Park, TX. While I was there, she identified the owner and phoned the contact on the account. The contact turned out to be the mother of the kid who lost the phone and explained the situation. They were going to be picking the phone up from the store. Nice job AT&T!

BTW, on Samsung phones (or may be this is a 4.2+ feature) you can define an emergency contact that can be dialed while the phone is locked. Unfortunately the only contact that was defined was 911.

Comment: Re:Police/findmyandroid? (Score 1) 3

by ewilts (#44745759) Attached to: Returning a found cellphone?

> Can you tell from the messages what the number is?

Nope. Because it's locked, I can only see in the status bar that it has new email and new text messages but not any of the contents. If I could see any email or IM, I could contact the sender and track the owner down. If I could see an email, I'd contact the recipient as well in case the owner is reading via another phone or web.

I'll take it to an AT&T store tonight if I don't get any great ideas during the day today. I don't want to hang on to it any longer than I need to because I'm sure the owner wants it back soon.

+ - Returning a found cellphone? 3

Submitted by ewilts
ewilts (121990) writes "I found a Samsung Galaxy S3 in a public park today. It's an AT&T version, and it's got a screen pattern lock on it. I can drop it off at an AT&T store, but I'm not convinced they'll actually make an effort to contact the original owner (but I'd love to be proven wrong on this).

How can I track down the owner to get it back to him/her?

When I got the phone, the battery was totally dead so it's been a day or two since it was lost. I charged it and it's got lots of incoming email and text messages as evidenced by the alerts and the status bar, so the service is still active.

I'm not looking for a reward, but I know an S3 is a valuable phone and I'm sure the original owner wants it back."

Comment: Same questions that you would ask a Unix admin (Score 2) 454

by ewilts (#41183811) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What Should a Unix Fan Look For In a Windows Expert?

Whether it's Windows, Linux, VMS or ESXi doesn't really matter. The external differences boil down to syntax. If you find somebody who only knows the syntax, you're not going to be happy unless you're looking for a short term employee or contractor. You don't hire a Unix admin because he knows how to write a bash script - you find somebody who understands the importance of automation, the ability to document and test, and the ability to pick up new technologies. You know technology is changing so you need a person who can adapt. If you can troubleshoot the root cause of a system crash, it doesn't matter what OS you're working on and you'll pick up a different OS quickly. But hire an idiot that can't troubleshoot worth a darn and it doesn't matter if he's an RHCE, MCSE or VCP or holds all three.

If you find somebody that can't tell the difference between they're, there, or their or between its and it's, he's not on the learning curve you need him to be on. It means that in 20 or 30 years, he still doesn't care about quality and is too lazy to look things up. Those aren't good combinations.

Comment: Re:Great for middle-class employed people. (Score 1) 324

by ewilts (#35178164) Attached to: Obama's Goal: 98% of US Covered By 4G

"voice plan: $20 a month" on an iPhone. Really? You are NOT getting a smartphone voice service for $20 per month. Unlimited voice minutes, which is what a landline gives you, is significantly higher. An individual phone line with unlimited minutes is $70 per month - that's $600 added to your cost for the first year alone.

Comment: Re:Great for middle-class employed people. (Score 1) 324

by ewilts (#35178006) Attached to: Obama's Goal: 98% of US Covered By 4G

It's not just that job search sites don't work well over dial up. You can't even keep up with security patches on your PC over dial up. I've got a relative that only has dial-up access and limited hours per month. Every time she turns on her PC, the patches start downloading and take over the phone connection. The only practical solution for dial-up users is to turn security patching off and that SUCKS. By the time you add up Window security patches, your Acrobat Reader security patches, and your antivirus patches, you'll easily consume hundreds of MB per month.

Comment: Re:Great for middle-class employed people. (Score 1) 324

by ewilts (#35177956) Attached to: Obama's Goal: 98% of US Covered By 4G

Not even close. You can't get a smartphone from any of the large retails for under $60 per month and that's to talk for 5 hours per month. MANY US citizens are not in an area where smartphone access is even an option - a vast majority of the central plains is dead.

A landline is cheap and gives you unlimited minutes - simply purchasing a dumb phone with unlimited minutes is going to cost easily 5 times as much. Data is significantly more.

Comment: Legal in Calgary, Alberta 20 years ago (Score 1) 698

by ewilts (#32240348) Attached to: ACLU Sues To Protect Your Right To Swear

I remember this going to court in Calgary, Alberta, around 1990. Somebody had a T-Shirt that said "Fuck off and die" on it and was arrested. The judge's decision at the time was that "fuck" could no longer be considered obscene because it had become everyday use. He did say the wearer demonstrated poor taste but it was unfortunately legal. And this was 20 years ago!

Top Ten Things Overheard At The ANSI C Draft Committee Meetings: (9) Dammit, little-endian systems *are* more consistent!

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