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Comment Re:Sounds cool (Score 4, Interesting) 156

When this whole CarrierIQ thing got started, I thought this was simply a diagnostic tool, yet conspiracy theorists were going to jump all over the "...but they could" aspects of the system. I also thought it was a shame, since the carriers and manufacturers ought to be able to monitor the system so they can improve it.

Your post has made me re-think all of my notions. I don't believe any nefarious purpose was afoot-- this was a tool intended to diagnose infrastructure and device performance. However, installing it as a rootkit is a bad call. It provides a vehicle for malware, and a description of its operation-- however technically accurate it migh be-- touches too many evil buzzwords. Such a tool, while useful, is eventually too easy to turn into a PR nightmare (obviously). Then throw the malware hijacking aspect in for good measure.

Verizon does it right, at least as we see it now. Those vans do a great job of real-world testing, where their test equipment is gathering the same metrics as CarrierIQ's software, but with test data nobody will whine about.

But...

...couldn't those vans also spy on every packet going through the cell they were testing? I'm not suggesting they are, or if that would be on any use. But they certainly have the necessary equipment in those special vans. Paint the vans black... and... wow, I don't want to think about it.

Comment GEOM (Score 1) 460

I could not agree more. I have used many of the GEOM features, they all work perfectly. The partitioning scheme, in particular GPART and GLABEL, make working with USB and other hot-swappable devices much easier and less error prone.

The FreeBSD motto is "the power to serve", linux laptop users should keep that in mind.

Comment Re:Phoronix fluff (Score 1) 335

I had not seen that article yet, thanks. However, it still misses the point. ZFS is *not* intended for 4GB workstations with single hard drives!

I'd like to see them benchmark a ZFS setup with 3 or 4 RAIDz pools concatenated into a 10 to 20 TB partition spanning 10 to 15 physical drives, with an MLC L2ARC. Throw 48GB of ram and an 8 core processor at it as well. Next, properly tune the InnoDB and logging partitions. Then, benchmark MySQL. Finally, try a large update/join spanning many tables, using foreign keys and stored procedures-- and:
-- pull the power plug, see if there is any data corruption
-- do a ZFS snapshot, live, see if the benchmark notices the difference
-- add more RAIDz pools to the live file system

People choose ZFS for the reasons in this article:
http://www.zdnet.com/blog/storage/zfs-data-integrity-tested/811

Sorry to hype on ZFS so much, but that is where my expertise is. Their benchmark was testing a scenario that nobody would be encouraged to ever actually use in the real world. It makes me seriously doubt the usefulness of their other benchmarks (like HURD) when they make such an obvious (to me) mistake as to omit these important details.

Comment Phoronix fluff (Score 2) 335

Phoronix has a history of questionable choices for their benchmark setups. Hardware, versions, and tuning are... cleverly chosen, almost as if there was a preconceived agenda with inevitable results. Not that there is one-- just like it seems like there is. And so colorfully presented! I remember when they tested ZFS on an i386 version of FreeBSD on a 1G laptop! Others have also noticed this Phoronix phenomenon:

http://forums.freebsd.org/archive/index.php/t-16396.html
http://www.kev009.com/wp/2008/12/phoronix-benchmarking-statistically-significant-and-other-performance-concerns/

The whole point of Hurd, at least right now, is tangential to benchmarks. Nothing wrong with testing, of course, but I think the results should not be used for any long term planning. Nobody is planning on launching a business running on Hurd servers... yet.

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