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Comment: Re:I don't understand how this is a "record" (Score 1) 84

Submarine crews generally experience surface pressures, ~1 bar. 18 metres down will be ~2.8 bar with attendant risks of decompression sickness (aka the bends) on the way up unless he comes up very slowly. This kind of thing is known as "Saturation diving and is done all the time e.g. in the North Sea for oil, often for weeks and at greater depths than Fabien is planning.

The 30 days "record" does seem to imply he's doing more than others have done which is rather misleading; it's certainly different from submarines, though.

Comment: Re:32TB of RAM = Everest-sized UPS (Score 2) 174

by larien (#44927707) Attached to: Oracle Promises 100x Faster DB Queries With New In-Memory Option
*facepalm*

No, you don't use main memory as a write cache, that would be idiotic. You use it for read cache. Any updates will be written to disk (and memory) before acknowledging to the client.

In any case, it doesn't matter how good your batteries/UPS are if your server or DB software crashes for any reason and you have uncommitted writes in memory, hence why caching writes on a database is a Bad Idea (TM).

Comment: Calling foul on #2 (Score 1) 142

by larien (#44320669) Attached to: Nine Traits of the Veteran Network Admin
"Veteran network admin trait No. 2: If we don't know it's down, it's probably not down"

Bullshit. Well, either that or our network admins are numpties. We had a switch go down in a data hall. We knew the switch was fubar as we'd lost connectivity to a number of devices at the same time. Networks wouldn't admit a fault. We eventually got moved to new switch ports and lo, everything started working.

The usual approach to any network fault in our place is "replace your NIC". That has, in my memory, fixed maybe two faults.

Comment: Re:Here's how my team handles it... (Score 1) 110

by larien (#43565285) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: How Do You Assess the Status of an Open Source Project?
The issue about ignoring future proofing is that you can invest a lot of time & effort integrating the tool into your environment, writing scripts etc. If that tool gets obsoleted for any reason, it can be a lot of work to switch to an alternative (this goes for FOSS & commercial software equally). You can get locked in to FOSS just as easily as with commercial, you just have a few more options available with FOSS. Some tools can be swapped in & out at a moment's notice, but if you integrate something into your way of working very closely, it can be a nightmare to unpick later.

As for modifying code yourself, that requires a whole set of skills & disciplines many admin teams don't have - I know our team/organisation would struggle with that. There are, of course, 100s of companies who are quite happy downloading source & patching/maintaining it themselves.

Other than that, there's some good advice in there. Version control & release/test cycles are key for any software product.

Comment: Re:Apt-get install clue (Score 1) 303

by larien (#42246319) Attached to: How To Use a Linux Virtual Private Server
I've done Unix admin for years. I still find it quicker and easier to manage clusters with a GUI because frankly, they're too bloody complicated to manage effectively without one. Yes, you can automate with the CLI (I've written scripts to automate service group creation in VCS), but for a quick dive in to check the cluster status & configuration, it's usually quicker with a GUI to drill down to the setting you need.

Comment: Re:Cisco what? (Score 1) 220

by larien (#41791909) Attached to: Cisco Pricing Undercut By $100M In Big Cal State University Network Project
Facebook & Google have networks/systems designed to work around failure and data loss is a minor inconvenience. They expect to lose a data centre at various times and continue to Just Work. In those environments, cheap grey boxes are fine provided you design appropriately. If you are designing a critical 24x7 system which cannot spread around in the same way (e.g. financial institutions) may have different requirements.

Now, while I'm not saying that Alcatel is less reliable than Cisco, Cisco generally has the reputation of reliability (warranted or otherwise) and so commands the premium.

Comment: Re:there has to be some statute of limitations... (Score 3, Interesting) 326

by larien (#38972687) Attached to: Man Claiming He Invented the Internet Sues
See Wikipedia on Submarine patents. Notably:

The ruling was upheld on September 9, 2005 by a three judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit under the doctrine of laches, citing "unreasonably long delays in prosecution"

So, it seems there's a chance that waiting too long can invalidate your claims.

Compare with trademark law where you have to defend it whenever it may be seen to be infringed (see the case where Hoover corp lost the right to have the exclusive rights to the term "hoover"); the same doctrine should apply for patents. Of course, the whole patent system is a mess these days as it was designed in a different age with different industries. Scrapping patents isn't the solution as they provide valuable protection to inventors who put effort into designing something, but they're horribly abused by various parties.

Comment: "Interlinked" databases? (Score 1) 100

by larien (#38726980) Attached to: Serious Oracle Flaw Revealed; Patch Coming
The issue seems to be fundamentally down to someone with DBA rights on a database issuing "ALTER DATABASE BEGIN BACKUP" which then causes an "interlinked" database to also increment its SCN; anyone know what the "interlinking" is? I'm guessing DB links but it's a bit vague on details and high on the scaremongering... FWIW, the ALTER DATABASE command will require DBA rights to implement, so I'm not seeing the apocalypse that Infoworld is punting; if you've got DBA rights, you can do lots of stuff like drop user, drop table etc, etc, etc...

Comment: Re:WTF (Score 2) 221

by larien (#37957010) Attached to: MS Traces Duqu Zero-Day To Font Parsing In Win32k
Wrong - if it was in userspace, it would be tied to the permissions granted the logged on user. I'm not 100% sure, but even as admin, UAC should still have blocked the worst of the behaviour. Once you're running code in the kernel, you can pretty much do whatever you want and the user's permissions and UAC become irrelevant.

"Indecision is the basis of flexibility" -- button at a Science Fiction convention.

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