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GUI-Based Asset-Tracking Tools For a Datacenter? 113

toruonu writes "How do you keep track of what's in your datacenter, where it is, what it's connected to and what is it doing right now? I mean I have built a datacenter from scratch over the years and I have machines from Sun, IBM, HP, Supermicro. I have machines that are simple workernodes and machines that are heavy grade storage consolidation machines. Then there are tens of switches, some for interconnect, some for management and don't get me started on the UPSs etc. So how does one keep any kind of decent track of such a system as the current form of twiki pages with various tables just doesn't cut it anymore and I'm looking for a freeware solution that could actually show me a visual representation of the various nodes in the racks, their connections and dependencies. Just to give a simple example, if I'm going to disconnect UPS #3 right now and swap switch #5, which machines should I even consider taking offline?" (The best-looking such system I've seen was being used at OSCON at a display booth for the Open Source Lab, and I think it was home-grown. Anyone who can shed light on that system?)

Tower Switch-Off Embarrasses Electrosensitives 292

Sockatume writes "Residents in Craigavon, South Africa complained of '[h]eadaches, nausea, tinnitus, dry burning itchy skins, gastric imbalances and totally disrupted sleep patterns' after an iBurst communications tower was put up in a local park. Symptoms subsided when the residents left the area, often to stay with family and thus evade their suffering. At a public meeting with the afflicted locals, the tower's owners pledged to switch off the mast immediately to assess whether it was responsible for their ailments. One problem: the mast had already been switched off for six weeks. Lawyers representing the locals say their case against iBurst will continue on other grounds."

Whatever Happened To Second Life? 209

Barence writes "It's desolate, dirty, and sex is outcast to a separate island. In this article, PC Pro's Barry Collins returns to Second Life to find out what went wrong, and why it's raking in more cash than ever before. It's a follow-up to a feature written three years ago, in which Collins spent a week living inside Second Life to see what the huge fuss at the time was all about. The difference three years can make is eye-opening."

IDEs With VIM Text Editing Capability? 193

An anonymous reader writes "I am currently looking to move from text editing with vim to a full fledged IDE with gdb integration, integrated command line, etc. Extending VIM with these capabilities is a mortal sin, so I am looking for a linux based GUI IDE. I do not want to give up the efficient text editing capabilities of VIM though. How do I have my cake and eat it too?"

Fungivarius Beats $2 Million Stradivarius Violin 210

Fluffeh writes "Violins made by the Italian master Antonio Giacomo Stradivarius are regarded as being of unparalleled quality even today, with enthusiasts being prepared to pay millions for a single example. Stradivarius himself knew nothing of fungi which attack wood, but he received inadvertent help from the Little Ice Age which occurred from 1645 to 1715. During this period Central Europe suffered long winters and cool summers which caused trees to grow slowly and uniformly ideal conditions in fact for producing wood with excellent acoustic qualities. Now scientists are turning to fungi to recreate some of these amazing sounding instruments."
Hardware Hacking

Submission + - Petabytes on a budget

mobilesteve writes: Backblaze, a company which provides remote backup solutions, had to figure out how to store hundreds of petabytes of data in a reliable, scalable way--and keep their costs low. After looking at several overpriced commercial solutions, they decided to build our own custom Backblaze Storage Pods: 67 terabyte 4U servers for $7,867.

Submission + - Dell to offer Sun software in servers (

mobilesteve writes: Dell has agreed to install Sun Microsystems's Solaris operating system in some of its servers, the companies announced Wednesday, signaling Sun's latest truce with a former rival. The chief executives of both companies announced the multiyear partnership together on stage at the Oracle OpenWorld conference in San Francisco

While Sun risks losing server sales to Dell because of the partnership, it stands to increase adoption of its open-source software products, and that could mean a substantial boost in revenue from related support services.

Feed Yahoo Follows Google's Purchase Of DoubleClick With Deal Of Its Own (

After Google's acquisition of DoubleClick, it was widely assumed that many smaller online advertising firms were "in play". The fact that Microsoft was also a DoubleClick suitor combined with the fact that Google's rivals couldn't afford to fall too far behind meant it was only a matter of time before another deal was made. Hoping to provide an alternative to the growing Google behemoth, Yahoo has announced the purchase of privately held Right Media, a company in which it already has a 20% stake. Yahoo says that it will create an open ad marketplace, which sounds a lot like the idea that DoubleClick had cooking up before the Google purchase was announced. This isn't likely to be the last deal. Microsoft's Steve Ballmer recently said that his biggest regret was that the company has come late to the online advertising game, which suggests that the company will probably make a deal to play catch up. Now that its two chief rivals have made these purchases, the pressure on Microsoft to get a similar deal done has been ratcheted up.

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Established technology tends to persist in the face of new technology. -- G. Blaauw, one of the designers of System 360