Raw unapologetic firepower in a single machine … a new record

This is a 5U 108TB (0.1 PB) usable high performance tightly coupled storage unit we are shipping to a customer this week. This is a spinning rust machine. We’ve been busy little beavers. Tuning, tweaking. And tuning. And tweaking. Did I mention the tuning and tweaking? Run status group 0 (all jobs): WRITE: io=196236MB, aggrb=4155.7MB/s, … Read moreRaw unapologetic firepower in a single machine … a new record


A knob is something you can turn, in theory, to effect a change in output condition. In my business, I have a few knobs I can turn for customers to help them. We can be quite creative in this. We are often asked to help in cases where other companies would just start blinking rapidly.
I like doing this. I really do enjoy working with customers and helping them solve their hard problems.
Sadly, knobs are all I can turn when we have something of the flip side of this. A customer who doesn’t pay their bill in full, or refuses to pay, or ignores payment requests. We have a limited range of options in these cases.
When these situations have arisen in the past, it has caused us to change how we bill our customers and the terms and conditions attached to our offers. Far too often we’ve been left paying for their shipping, or customs/tariffs. This has happened recently, and our choices are limited as to what we can do. More in a moment. In one recent case where we were effectively begged for credit extension (and against our better judgement, granted it) with a guarantee that the customer would pay rapidly. They haven’t.

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'Amusing' benchmarketing … without ever having run a benchmark!

Imagine you have a product, and you really haven’t measured its performance, but you want to make performance claims. So you take an “easy” way around this. You simply add up all your bandwidth or IOP data. Yeah, thats it, you add it up.
No, I’m not kidding. You do this.
Is this meaningful in the HPC world? Hell no.
Do people do this? Hell yes.
Is it wrong? Extremely.
Should you call vendors out who do this? Damn right.
Here’s a simple example. Imagine, we put say, I dunno, 4x QDR Infiniband ports in our machines. Does this mean we can claim that we have 12.8 GB/s of sustained bandwidth? And then claim we are unique in the world for doing so? And that we are the fastest?
No, it doesn’t mean this at all.

Read more'Amusing' benchmarketing … without ever having run a benchmark!

A 'cool' xfs bug

No, really, bugs can be cool … Customer has a user with a proclivity towards writing large files. Sparse large files. Say a couple Petabytes or so. Single file. I kid you not. (filenames and paths changed) [root@jr4-2 ~]# ls -alF /data/brick-sdd2/dht/scratch/xyzpdq total 4652823496 d——— 2 1232 1000 86 Jun 27 20:31 ./ drwx—— 104 … Read moreA 'cool' xfs bug

… and Ubuntu 11.04 has an every so slightly broken root on iSCSI …

Православни икониUgh. See here. Got bit by this. BTW: The new internals of Tiburon are getting even more wild. This thing is turning into a very powerful system for booting large numbers of machines with (nearly) identical configs, very quickly (hmmm … can you say … cluster? Cloud? VMs? …. mwhahahaha!). Will be re-adapting our … Read more… and Ubuntu 11.04 has an every so slightly broken root on iSCSI …