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Submission + - Who Makes The Decision To Go Cloud and Who Should?

Esther Schindler writes: It’s a predictable argument in any IT shop: Should the techies — with their hands on their keyboards — be the people who decide which technology or deployment is right for the company? Or should CIOs and senior management — with their strategic perspective — be the ones to make the call? Ellis Luk got input from plenty of people about management vs. techies making cloud/on-premise decisions... with, of course, a lot of varying in opinion.

Submission + - No, you can't use Wi-Fi to power your phone. Do the math!->

richi writes: Did you see the headlines squawking about how Wi-Fi will charge your smartphone in the future?

Bunkum, I say. Each time the story gets repeated, it loses a little more veracity. So I aimed my Computerworld curation cannon at this.

Researchers have improved the ability to capture power from radio waves. By tweaking some standard Wi-Fi hardware, they've increased the amount of power that can be leeched from unused transmissions. It could help power IoT sensors.

But wait — don't believe everything you read on the interwebs, kids. Predictably, some science-illiterate journalists and bloggers are saying it can actually charge your smartphone. Sadly, the researchers only achieved power levels of a few microWatts — that's about 100,000 times too small to run your phone, let alone charge it.

Link to Original Source

Submission + - Good: Companies care about data privacy. Bad: No idea how to protect it. 1

Esther Schindler writes: Research performed by Dimensional Research demonstrated something most of us know: Just about every business cares about data privacy, and intends to do something to protect sensitive information. But when you cross-tabulate the results to look more closely at what organizations are actually doing to ensure that private data stays private, the results are sadly predictable: While smaller companies care about data privacy just as much as big ones do, they’re ill-equipped to respond. What’s different is not the perceived urgency of data privacy and other privacy/security matters. It’s what companies are prepared (and funded) to do about it.

For instance:

When it comes to training employees on data privacy, 82% of the largest organizations do tell the people who work for them the right way to handle personally identifiable data and other sensitive information. Similarly, 71% of the businesses with 1,000-5,000 employees offer such training.

However, even though smaller companies are equally concerned about the subject, that concern does not trickle down to the employees quite so effectively. Half of the midsize businesses offer no such training; just 39% of organizations with under 100 employees regularly train employees on data privacy.

Presumably, your employer cares about data security and privacy, too (if for no other reason than to keep its name out of the news). But what is it really doing to ensure that protection?

Submission + - The Next Decade in Storage

Esther Schindler writes: Beyond “What’s coming in 2015” articles: Robin Harris, a.k.a. StorageMojo, predicts what storage will be like in 2025. And, he says, the next 10 years will be the most exciting and explosive in the history of data storage. For instance:

There are several forms of [Resistive RAM], but they all store data by changing the resistance of a memory site, instead of placing electrons in a quantum trap, as flash does. RRAM promises better scaling, fast byte-addressable writes, much greater power efficiency, and thousands of times flash’s endurance.

RRAM's properties should enable significant architectural leverage, even if it is more costly per bit than flash is today. For example, a fast and high endurance RRAM cache would simplify metadata management while reducing write latency.

...and plenty more, of course.

Comment Real reasons why Lollipop is slow to launch (Score 1) 437

Actually, to sum up what I said in the linked to article, Lollipop came out with multiple problems and Google was really slow both to get the first OTA and the updates out. It's not because as the person who posted this to /. suggests because people were sticking with KitKat because it was good enough. Now, if Lollipop 5.02 goes no where then that may be a real argument, but it's not one you can make today.

Submission + - Avoid Holiday Camera-geddon: How to Keep Holiday Family Photos from Bringing Dow

Esther Schindler writes: A hidden danger for your datacenter lays lurking during the holiday season – and it’s ready to bring your servers to their knees, write Yadin Porter de León and Tony Piscopo. Employees take a smartphone to family gatherings to capture the smiles of their family members. When the employees return to the office, those photos are synced and shared across your network.

And, come the first working day of the new year, they’ll all be backing up at once!

If you work in a large company with the backup solutions residing in the datacenter, you likely have experienced this phenomenon. It’s been described by some as “the worst day of the year for their infrastructure load.”

You know the painful process of trying to get the services up-and-running again after it crashes. You may find yourself struggling as the servers continue to crash as all those endpoints relentlessly try to shove photos of pets in Santa hats and bad Christmas sweaters through your precious network pipes and clog up the storage pools.

The authors have four suggestions for how sysadmins can avoid or minimize the damage, no matter what kind of backup system you use.

Submission + - Gartner: Mobility management is a mess.

Esther Schindler writes: What’s the future of endpoint management? According to a Gartner research director: It’s a mess.

Gartner Research Director Rob Smith, speaking in Barcelona this week at the Gartner Symposium, addressed business challenges, particularly in bigger businesses:

IT has to change its basic perspective: All endpoints are untrusted. That’s a big statement and the automatic response might be, “Not if I lock it down!” But, according to Smith, the days of saying no to users is dead. The new reality is that if you say no, users will go around you.

It might not be hopeless, though:

How do we possibly protect our data when things change so fast? Smith thinks the answer is in what he calls his “Lord of the Rings” philosophy: one system to rule them all, or what Gartner refers to as Unified Endpoint Management (UEM). UEM is a consistent, single approach to managing all aspects of endpoint data protection. It encompasses a whole range of features (identity management, app management, data access, etc.) and requires that vendors work together, ensuring their separate services and/or apps talk to each other and work together without necessitating IT involvement.

This sounds like utopia. The good news? According to Smith, vendors have already started to do it. The bad news? IT departments, with their legacy Windows XP and Windows 7 deployments, aren’t ready to support it.

Do you think this all is on the mark? Or are there ways to support users that don't drive both IT and end-users crazy?

Submission + - Big Bang Theory's Biggest Lesson: Let Nerds Be Nerds 1

Esther Schindler writes: Sometimes we can learn great lessons from fictional characters. This article professes to explain what Sheldon, Leonard, Howard, and Raj from the “Big Bang Theory” can teach managers about tapping into nerd talent. For example: "Improvement is a way of life. It’s often difficult for managers to ensure the quality of work remains high for every member of a team, but they never have to worry where nerds are concerned. The brains of geeks are wired to solve problems."

Submission + - What should you back up? More important: What SHOULDN'T you?

Esther Schindler writes: Whatever software you choose for backing up files, you need to be organized. Do you really need myriad copies of the Trash folder or *.bak files, which consume backup time, bandwidth, and storage? Probably not. Inclusions versus Exclusions: Choosing the Best Method for Backup and Data Collection has useful guidelines for designing a sensible business backup strategy, in order to ensure you keep all the right data securely but not the junk.

Submission + - Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.6's Big New Feature is Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 ->

darthcamaro writes: Red Hat is out today with Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.6 (RHEL), providing its users with a long list of incremental updates. While many of those updates are new to RHEL 6, they are not new to RHEL 7, the newer version of Red Hat's flagship enterprise Linux product. High-availability, security and peformance features from RHEL 7 now land in RHEL 6.6. Going a step further, Red Hat is now providing a RHEL 6 Docker Image, so RHEL 7 users can run RHEL 6 applications on RHEL 7 without any changes.

As to why RHEL 6 applications cannot just simply run natively on RHEL 7, Bhavna Sarathy, technology product manager in the Platform Business Unit at Red Hat explained explained that applications that were built and certified to run on Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6 have to be rebuilt and re-certified to run on Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7, as the software stack between the two major releases is vastly different.


Link to Original Source

Submission + - Protecting Corporate Data...When an Employee Leaves 3

Esther Schindler writes: When someone leaves the company, the HR department is quick to grab the employee's laptop. But what about the data on other equipment? How can the organization know what's on her mobile devices? Does anyone know to which websites and cloud-based software the employee has access? This article discusses how IT (working with HR) can help ensure the company's data doesn't walk out the front door.

Which raises the question of whether it's possible for IT to even know what external logins an employee has, and whether the effort to track all that is worth the time to do so. While everyone said, "Treat people right and they won't want to do anything malicious with the company data," isn't the implication that it only takes one bad experience...?

Submission + - The frustrations of supporting users in remote offices, and what to do about 'em

Esther Schindler writes: You're not alone in your struggle against people who think a shell is something you hold to your ear," writes Carol Pinchefsky. "Other techies are out there supporting users in remote offices, fighting the good fight against computer- and user-related mishaps – or at least tolerating user frustration with a modicum of grace."

You can laugh at their pain — and she gives you plenty of opportunity to do so, in The Joys of Remote Tech Support (for Low Values of Joy). Like the tech support person whose systems in Brazil went down — during Carnival:

...We had to wait more than a week for the locals to sober up enough to reconnect the line.

In the end, I had to walk a tech (who did not know the system) through the process step by step via an interpreter. Of course, the interpreter was not technical. So it was kind of like explaining to your mom to tell your grandfather (who is hard of hearing) how to do something while she is on the phone and he is across the room from her.

And maybe you can even learn from their advice.

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