Stream this … no … really …

Ok. I asked for pointers to free as in Libre video. Stuff we can use for testing streaming performance. And load the JackRabbit system, with multiple clients pulling these videos. So first you need a video server. Well, IIS can do it in windows, but as I have discovered, Apache 2.2.9 does a somewhat better job of serving media on Windows 2003. Not sure why yet, may look.
So now we have the mpeg of “The Brain that wouldn’t die”. From the Internet Archive. And we can use this to test streaming. We have several of these videos. Enough to swamp the main memory (4 GB in 32 bit Windows 2003 server R2 enterprise edition), so we are pulling from disk. Which is one of the strengths of JackRabbit.

Read moreStream this … no … really …

What happened to Youtube? Why isn't it as good as Liveleak?

Youtube used to be “the” video site. Yeah, there are lots of competitors out there now. Sort of like social networks for a while. But Youtube has an issue. Click on an embedded vide in a web site or a blog, and it is at best a crap shoot as to whether you will get anything playing. Most of the time now, we don’t. This is true on Windows, on Linux, with the latest Flash.
Compare this to Liveleak whom I asked for help playing videos from. I pointed out the problem, and they fixed it for me, interactively.
Now Liveleak just works. All the time. No issues. None.

Read moreWhat happened to Youtube? Why isn't it as good as Liveleak?

… and a quick bonnie session (still untuned)

Again, 24 drive bay JackRabbit storage system. Version 1.03 ——Sequential Output—— –Sequential Input- –Random- -Per Chr- –Block– -Rewrite- -Per Chr- –Block– –Seeks– Machine Size K/sec %CP K/sec %CP K/sec %CP K/sec %CP K/sec %CP /sec %CP jrs8 32088M 511057 49 228336 35 1046117 91 514.5 0 ——Sequential Create—— ——–Random Create——– -Create– –Read— -Delete– -Create– –Read— … Read more… and a quick bonnie session (still untuned)

W2k3 impressions day 2

Ok, now I know why Microsoft has been working so hard on W2k8. Because W2k3 doesn’t scale well under load. Using our test rigs, and the apache “ab” program, we can see *huge* differences in the same hardware (literally the same, simply swapping out boot drives), between W2k8 and W2k3, with the latter barely about to eek out 60% of the theoretical max.

Read moreW2k3 impressions day 2

W2k3 vs W2k8 first impressions

W2k8 was not hard to install. Actually it was almost easy. Administration wasn’t hard. Most things went right on. Performance was ok.
W2k3 was a royal pain to install, and I am not done yet. Administration … well, between the network adapters which, after being told to use a fixed IP address seem to still wish to acquire an IP address, to the IIS which refuses to install unless SP2 CD is available (this is W2k3 SP2 BTW) …

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Figured out the BSOD for W2k3 Server

This was annoying. Let the record show that W2k3 server doesn’t grok AHCI. So if you are trying to install it and it BSODs on you, turn off AHCI and redo your boot drive config in bios. Yeah, you give up performance, and a better interface. But it will boot now, without crashing.

"But you can't do that!"

About 3 years ago, I was at a Sun HPC consortium meeting, where there was excitement over the possibility of getting 1TFLOP into 2.5 racks with an ultra-dense server. This was cool. It was awesome. One of the conference organizers was talking to me about this, saying it was the densest possible system (at that time).
Having just been through the accelerator card high level design process for a business plan/company concept we were pitching to VCs, I innocently (ok, well, not so innocently) asked …
“Well, what if you could get a real sustainable 1TFLOP in a 4U box?”

Read more"But you can't do that!"