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  • Oracle Linux Forum

    - by rickramsey
    This forum includes live chat so you can tell Wim, Lenz, and the gang what you really think. Linux Forum - Tuesday March 27 Since Oracle recently made Release 2 of its Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel available (see Lenz's blog), we're following up with an online forum with Oracle's Linux executives and engineers. Topics will be: 9:30 - 9:45 am PT Oracle's Linux Strategy Edward Screven, Oracle's Chief Corporate Architect and Wim Coekaerts, Senior VP of Linux and Virtualization Engineering, will explain Oracle's Linux strategy, the benefits of Oracle Linux, Oracle's role in the Linux community, and the Oracle Linux roadmap. 9:45 - 10:00 am PT Why Progressive Insurance Chose Oracle Linux John Dome, Lead Systems Engineer at Progressive Insurance, outlines why they selected Oracle Linux with the Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel to reduce cost and increase the performance of database applications. 10:00 - 11:00 am PT What's New in Oracle Linux Oracle engineers walk you through new features in Oracle Linux, including zero-downtime updates with Ksplice, Btrfs and OCFS2, DTrace for Linux, Linux Containers, vSwitch and T-Mem. 11:00 am - 12:00 pm PT Get More Value from your Linux Vendor Why Oracle Linux delivers more value than Red Hat Enterprise Linux, including better support at lower cost, best practices for deployments, extreme performance for cloud deployments and engineered systems, and more. Date: Tuesday, March 27, 2012 Time: 9:30 AM PT / 12:30 PM ET Duration: 2.5 hours Register here. - Rick

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  • Oracle VM Deep Dives

    - by rickramsey
    "With IT staff now tasked to deliver on-demand services, datacenter virtualization requirements have gone beyond simple consolidation and cost reduction. Simply provisioning and delivering an operating environment falls short. IT organizations must rapidly deliver services, such as infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS), platform-as-a-service (PaaS), and software-as-a-service (SaaS). Virtualization solutions need to be application-driven and enable:" "Easier deployment and management of business critical applications" "Rapid and automated provisioning of the entire application stack inside the virtual machine" "Integrated management of the complete stack including the VM and the applications running inside the VM." Application Driven Virtualization, an Oracle white paper That was published in August of 2011. The new release of Oracle VM Server delivers significant virtual networking performance improvements, among other things. If you're not sure how virtual networks work or how to use them, these two articles by Greg King and friends might help. Looking Under the Hood at Virtual Networking by Greg King Oracle VM Server for x86 lets you create logical networks out of physical Ethernet ports, bonded ports, VLAN segments, virtual MAC addresses (VNICs), and network channels. You can then assign channels (or "roles") to each logical network so that it handles the type of traffic you want it to. Greg King explains how you go about doing this, and how Oracle VM Server for x86 implements the network infrastructure you configured. He also describes how the VM interacts with paravirtualized guest operating systems, hardware virtualized operating systems, and VLANs. Finally, he provides an example that shows you how it all looks from the VM Manager view, the logical view, and the command line view of Oracle VM Server for x86. Fundamental Concepts of VLAN Networks by Greg King and Don Smerker Oracle VM Server for x86 supports a wide range of options in network design, varying in complexity from a single network to configurations that include network bonds, VLANS, bridges, and multiple networks connecting the Oracle VM servers and guests. You can create separate networks to isolate traffic, or you can configure a single network for multiple roles. Network design depends on many factors, including the number and type of network interfaces, reliability and performance goals, the number of Oracle VM servers and guests, and the anticipated workload. The Oracle VM Manager GUI presents four different ways to create an Oracle VM network: Bonds and ports VLANs Both bond/ports and VLANS A local network This article focuses the second option, designing a complex Oracle VM network infrastructure using only VLANs, and it steps through the concepts needed to create a robust network infrastructure for your Oracle VM servers and guests. More Resources Virtual Networking for Dummies Download Oracle VM Server for x86 Find technical resources for Oracle VM Server for x86 -Rick Follow me on: Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Personal Twitter | YouTube | The Great Peruvian Novel

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  • New Shell In Oracle Solaris 11

    - by rickramsey
    In Oracle Solaris 11, Korn Shell 93 (/usr/bin/ksh/ or usr/bin/ksh93) replaces both the Bourne Shell (/usr/bin/sh or /sbin/sh) and Korn Shell 88 (/usr/bin/ksh). There are some incompatibilities between the shells. They are described in: /usr/share/doc/ksh/COMPATIBILITY If a script has compatibility problems you can use the legacy shell by changing the she-bang line: If this doesn't work Use This #!/bin/ksh #!/usr/sunos/bin/ksh #!/usr/bin/ksh #!/usr/sunos/bin/ksh     #!/bin/sh #!/usr/sunos/bin/sh #!/usr/bin/sh #!/usr/sunos/bin/sh #!/sbin/sh #!/usr/sunos/bin/sh - Mike Gerdts http://blogs.oracle.com/zoneszone/ Website Newsletter Facebook Twitter

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  • Oye! Help Build OTN America Latina!

    - by rickramsey
    Yes, tango is passion, but it is passion born of romance. Not passion born of lust. As it is so often portrayed today. Understand that, and you will begin to understand why life in Latin America is so rich. image courtesy of Continental Magazine. You don't often get a chance to shape the direction of a technical comunidad. Somebody else gets there first and pretty soon everyone is in a rathole about the relevance of rutabagas. Or rutabagels as my public-school-educated hijas prefer to call them. Well, OTN American Latina is just starting up. If you're a techie who speaks Spanish or Portuguese, or if you just like hanging out with techies latinoamericanos (and who doesn't?), here's how to get in on the fun: Why Portuguese Speaking Techies Should Join Why Spanish Speaking Techies Should Join And here are the sites themselves: OTN America Latina in Brazilian Portuguese OTN America Latina in Spanish If you're not sure which site to visit, just remember that Brazilian Portuguese is Spanish spoken with a little body English. Ricardo System Admin and Developer Community of the Oracle Technology Network

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  • Back Up to Tape the Way You Shop For Groceries

    - by rickramsey
    Imagine if this was how you shopped for groceries: From the end of the aisle sprint to the point where you reach the ketchup. Pull a bottle from the shelf and yell at the top of your lungs, “Got it!” Sprint back to the end of the aisle. Start again and sprint down the same aisle to the mustard, pull a bottle from the shelf and again yell for the whole store to hear, “Got it!” Sprint back to the end of the aisle. Repeat this procedure for every item you need in the aisle. Proceed to the next aisle and follow the same steps for the list of items you need from that aisle. Sounds ridiculous, doesn’t it? Not only is it horribly inefficient, it’s exhausting and can lead to wear out failures on your grocery cart, or worse, yourself. This is essentially how NetApp and some other applications write NDMP backups to tape. In the analogy, the ketchup and mustard are the files to be written, yelling “Got it!” is the equivalent of a sync mark at the end of a file, and the sprint back to the end of an aisle is the process most commonly called a “backhitch” where the drive has to back up on a tape to start writing again. Writing to tape in this way results in very slow tape drive performance and imposes unnecessary wear on the tape drive and the media, especially when writing small files. The good news is not all tape drives behave this way when writing small files. Unlike midrange LTO drives, Oracle’s StorageTek T10000D tape drive is designed to handle this scenario efficiently. The difference between the two drive types is that the T10000D drive gives you the ability to write files in a NetApp NDMP backup environment the way you would normally shop for groceries. With grocery shopping, you essentially stream through aisles picking up items as you go, and then after checking out, yell, “Got it!”, though you might do that last step silently. With the T10000D, it has a feature called the Tape Application Accelerator, which prevents the drive from having to stop after each file is written to notify NetApp or another application that the write was successful. When enabled in the T10000D tape drive, Tape Application Accelerator causes the tape drive to respond to tape mark and file sync commands differently than when disabled: A tape mark received by the tape drive is treated as a buffered tape mark. A file sync received by the tape drive is treated as a no op command. Since buffered tape marks and no op commands do not cause the tape drive to empty the contents of its buffer to tape and backhitch, the data is written to tape in significantly less time. Oracle has emulated NetApp environments with a number of different file sizes and found the following when comparing the T10000D with the Tape Application Accelerator enabled versus LTO6 tape drives. Notice how the T10000D is not only monumentally faster, but also remarkably consistent? In addition, the writing of the 50 GB of files is done without a single backhitch. The LTO6 drive, meanwhile, will perform as many as 3,800 backhitches! At the end of writing the entire set of files, the T10000D tape drive reports back to the application, in this case NetApp, that the write was successful via a tape mark. So if the Tape Application Accelerator dramatically improves performance and reliability, why wouldn’t you always have it enabled? The reason is because tape drive buffers are meant to be just temporary data repositories so in the event of a power loss, there could be data loss in certain environments for the files that resided in the buffer. Fortunately, we do have best practices depending on your environment to avoid this from happening. I highly recommend reading Maximizing Tape Performance with StorageTek T10000 Tape Drives (pdf) to decide which best practice is right for you. The white paper also digs deeper into the benefits of the Tape Application Accelerator. The white paper is free, and after downloading it you can decide for yourself whether you want to yell “Got it!” out loud or just silently to yourself. Customer Advisory Panel One final link: Oracle has started up a Customer Advisory Panel program to collect feedback from customers on their current experiences with Oracle products, as well as desires for future product development. If you would like to participate in the program, go to this link at oracle.com. photo taken on Idaho's Sacajewea Historic Biway by Rick Ramsey - Brian Zents Follow OTN on Blog | Facebook | Twitter | YouTube

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  • Yay! Oracle Solaris 11.1 Is Here!

    - by rickramsey
    Even the critters are happy. This is no cosmetic release. It's got TONS of new stuff for both system admins and system developers. In the coming weeks and months I'll highlight specific new capabilities, but for now, here are a few resources to get you started. What's New (pdf) Describes enhancements for sysadmins in: Installation System configuration Virtualization Security and Compliance Networking Data management Kernel/platform support Network drivers User environment And for system developers: Preflight Applications Checker Oracle ExaStack Labs (available to Oracle Partner Network Gold-level members for application certification) Oracle Solaris Studio Integrated Java Virtual Machine (JVM): Updates are now managed using the Image Packaging System (IPS) Migration guides and technology mapping tables for AIX, HP-UX and Red Hat Linux: Download Free downloads for SPARC and x86 are available, along with instructions and tips for using the new repositories and Image Packaging System. Tech Article: How to Upgrade to Oracle Solaris 11.1 You can upgrade using either Oracle's official Solaris release repository or, if you have a support contract, the Support repository. Peter Dennis explains how. Documentation Superbly written instructions from our dedicated cadre of world-renowned but woefully underpaid technical writers: Getting Started Installing, Booting, and Updating Establishing an Oracle Solaris Network Administering Essential Features Administering Network Services Securing the Operating System Monitoring and Tuning Creating and Using Virtual Environments Working with the Desktop Developing Applications Reference Manuals And more Training And don't forget the new online training courses from Oracle University! I really liked them. Here are my first and second impressions. Website Newsletter Facebook Twitter

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  • New Hands-On Labs For Oracle VM

    - by rickramsey
    I just spent some time walking through the labs that Christophe Pauliat and Olivier Canonge prepared to help you become familiar with Oracle VM. They are terrific. We will offer them for the first time at Oracle Open World. Because they require some pre-work and 16Gigs of memory, we are supplying the laptops for the participants. Lab 1: Deploying Infrastructure as a Service with Oracle VM Session ID: HOL9558 Tuesday October 2nd, 2012 10:15am – 11:15am Marriott Marquis - Salon 14/15 Planning and deployment of an infrastructure as a service (IaaS) environment with Oracle VM as the foundation. Storage capacity planning, LUN creation, network bandwidth planning, and best practices for designing and streamlining the environment so that it's easy to manage. Lab 2: Virtualize and Deploy Oracle Applications Using Oracle VM Templates Session ID: HOL9559 Tuesday October 2nd, 2012 11:45am – 12:45pm Marriott Marquis - Salon 14/15 How to deploy Oracle applications in minutes with Oracle VM Templates. Step-by-step lab proctored by field-experienced engineers and product experts. Covers: Find out what Oracle VM Templates are and how they work Deploy an actual Oracle VM Template for an Oracle Application Plan your deployment to streamline on going updates and upgrades Lab 3: x86 Enterprise Cloud Infrastructure with Oracle VM 3.x and Sun ZFS Storage Appliance Session ID: HOL 9870 Wednesday, 3 Oct, 2012 5:00 PM - 6:00 PM Marriott Marquis - Salon 14/15 This hands-on lab will demonstrate what Oracle’s enterprise cloud infrastructure for x86 can do, and how it works with Oracle VM 3.x. It covers: How to create VMs How to migrate VMs How to deploy Oracle applications quickly and easily with Oracle VM Templates How to use the Storage Connect plug-in for the Sun ZFS Storage Appliance Additional Virtualization Resources for Sysadmins Technical articles about virtualization Other resources about Oracle virtualization technologies More information about Oracle Open World. - Rick Website Newsletter Facebook Twitter

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  • Is 'Old-School' the Wrong Way to Describe Reliable Security?

    - by rickramsey
    source The Hotel Toronto apparently knows how to secure its environment. "Built directly into the bedrock in 1913, the vault features an incredible 4-foot thick steel door that weighs 40 tonnes, yet can nonetheless be moved with a single finger. During construction, the gargantuan door was hauled up Yonge Street from the harbour by a team of 18 horses. " 1913. Those were the days. Sysadmins had to be strong as bulls and willing to shovel horse maneur. At least nowadays you don't have to be that strong. And, if you happen to be trying to secure your Oracle Linux environment, you may be able to avoid the shoveling, as well. Provided you know the tricks of the trade contained in these two recently published articles. Tips for Hardening an Oracle Linux Server General strategies for hardening an Oracle Linux server. Oracle Linux comes "secure by default," but the actions you take when deploying the server can increase or decrease its security. How to minimize active services, lock down network services, and many other tips. By Ginny Henningsen, James Morris and Lenz Grimmer. Tips for Securing an Oracle Linux Environment System logging with logwatch and process accounting with psacct can help detect intrusion attempts and determine whether a system has been compromised. So can using the RPM package manager to verifying the integrity of installed software. These and other tools are described in this second article, which takes a wider perspective and gives you tips for securing your entire Oracle Linux environment. Also by the crack team of Ginny Henningsen, James Morris and Lenz Grimmer. - Rick Website Newsletter Facebook Twitter

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  • Whole Lotta Virtualization Goin' On

    - by rickramsey
    Lately we've published a lot of content about virtualization. Here's a sampling. Podcat: Technology Preview of Transcendent Memory Turns out that in a virtual environment, RAM is the bottleneck. Not because it's slow, it's not, but because each CPU still had to use its own RAM. Which gets expensive. In this podcast, Dan Magenheimer describes how Oracle and the open source community taught the guest kernel in Oracle Linux to share its memory with other CPU's. Transcendent memory will wind up saving large data centers a lot of money. Find out how. Tech Article: How to Use Oracle VM Templates This article describes how to prepare an Oracle VM environment to use Oracle VM Templates, how to obtain a template, and how to deploy the template to your Oracle VM environment. It also describes how to create a virtual machine based on that template and how you can clone the template and change the clone's configuration. Tech Article: How to Set Up a Load Balanced Application Across Two Oracle Solaris Zones Install Apache Tomcat on two Oracle Solaris zones. Connect them across a VPN. And let the Integrated Load Balancer in Oracle Solaris 11 manage traffic. Presto: high(er) availability in a single server. Tech Article: How to Install Oracle RAC on Oracle Solaris Zone Clusters Learn how to implement a multi-tiered database environment that isolates database tiers and administrative domains, while taking advantage of centralized (and simpler) cluster admin. For fans of Jerry Lee Lewis If you're a fan of Jerry Lee Lewis, you might enjoy this video. - Rick Website Newsletter Facebook Twitter

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  • Screwed Up Again, Did Ya?

    - by rickramsey
    Your turn to wear the Cantaloupe Cap of Shame? Here's how to keep it from happening again: Figure out what data you need to archive Create a solid archive someplace safer than your iphone Get wicked fast at recovering your system. Jesse Butler explains how to do all three for a system running Oracle Solaris 11: How to Recover an Oracle Solaris 11 System Website Newsletter Facebook Twitter

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  • Validating Petabytes of Data with Regularity and Thoroughness

    - by rickramsey
    by Brian Zents When former Intel CEO Andy Grove said “only the paranoid survive,” he wasn’t necessarily talking about tape storage administrators, but it’s a lesson they’ve learned well. After all, tape storage is the last line of defense to prevent data loss, so tape administrators are extra cautious in making sure their data is secure. Not surprisingly, we are often asked for ways to validate tape media and the files on them. In the past, an administrator could validate the media, but doing so was often tedious or disruptive or both. The debut of the Data Integrity Validation (DIV) and Library Media Validation (LMV) features in the Oracle T10000C drive helped eliminate many of these pains. Also available with the Oracle T10000D drive, these features use hardware-assisted CRC checks that not only ensure the data is written correctly the first time, but also do so much more efficiently. Traditionally, a CRC check takes at least 25 seconds per 4GB file with a 2:1 compression ratio, but the T10000C/D drives can reduce the check to a maximum of nine seconds because the entire check is contained within the drive. No data needs to be sent to a host application. A time savings of at least 64 percent is extremely beneficial over the course of checking an entire 8.5TB T10000D tape. While the DIV and LMV features are better than anything else out there, what storage administrators really need is a way to check petabytes of data with regularity and thoroughness. With the launch of Oracle StorageTek Tape Analytics (STA) 2.0 in April, there is finally a solution that addresses this longstanding need. STA bundles these features into one interface to automate all media validation activities across all Oracle SL3000 and SL8500 tape libraries in an environment. And best of all, the validation process can be associated with the health checks an administrator would be doing already through STA. In fact, STA validates the media based on any of the following policies: Random Selection – Randomly selects media for validation whenever a validation drive in the standalone library or library complex is available. Media Health = Action – Selects media that have had a specified number of successive exchanges resulting in an Exchange Media Health of “Action.” You can specify from one to five exchanges. Media Health = Evaluate – Selects media that have had a specified number of successive exchanges resulting in an Exchange Media Health of “Evaluate.” You can specify from one to five exchanges. Media Health = Monitor – Selects media that have had a specified number of successive exchanges resulting in an Exchange Media Health of “Monitor.” You can specify from one to five exchanges. Extended Period of Non-Use – Selects media that have not had an exchange for a specified number of days. You can specify from 365 to 1,095 days (one to three years). Newly Entered – Selects media that have recently been entered into the library. Bad MIR Detected – Selects media with an exchange resulting in a “Bad MIR Detected” error. A bad media information record (MIR) indicates degraded high-speed access on the media. To avoid disrupting host operations, an administrator designates certain drives for media validation operations. If a host requests a file from media currently being validated, the host’s request takes priority. To ensure that the administrator really knows it is the media that is bad, as opposed to the drive, STA includes drive calibration and qualification features. In addition, validation requests can be re-prioritized or cancelled as needed. To ensure that a specific tape isn’t validated too often, STA prevents a tape from being validated twice within 24 hours via one of the policies described above. A tape can be validated more often if the administrator manually initiates the validation. When the validations are complete, STA reports the results. STA does not report simply a “good” or “bad” status. It also reports if media is even degraded so the administrator can migrate the data before there is a true failure. From that point, the administrators’ paranoia is relieved, as they have the necessary information to make a sound decision about the health of the tapes in their environment. About the Photograph Photograph taken by Rick Ramsey in Death Valley, California, May 2014 - Brian Follow OTN Garage on: Web | Facebook | Twitter | YouTube

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  • Silly Developers, VirtualBox Is For Sysadmins!

    - by rickramsey
    That's one of my favorite bumper stickers. (Well, along with the sticker placed upside down on Jeep windows that says "If you can read this, roll me over.") I don't object to the "silly boys" sticker because, in my humble opinion, girls look much cuter in Jeeps than guys do. But as Ginny Henningsen points out, a similar sentiment can be applied to Oracle VM VirtualBox. While writing her other sysadmin-related articles for OTN, Ginny horsed around with VirtualBox so much that she fell in love with it. Not as a developer, but as a sysadmin. Read why she thinks it's such a great sysadmin tool: My New Favorite Sysadmin Tool: Oracle VM VirtualBox Here are some of Ginny's other articles: How I Simplified Oracle Database Installation on Oracle Linux Best Way to Update Software With IPS Best Way to Automate ZFS Snapshots and Track Software Updates Best Way to Update Software in Zones - Rick Ramsey Website Newsletter Facebook Twitter

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  • Is Oracle Solaris 11 Really Better Than Oracle Solaris 10?

    - by rickramsey
    If you want to be well armed for that debate, study this comparison of the commands and capabilities of each OS before the spittle starts flying: How Solaris 11 Compares to Solaris 10 For instance, did you know that the command to configure your wireless network in Solaris 11 is not wificonfig, but dladm and ipadm for manual configuration, and netcfg for automatic configuration? Personally, I think the change was made to correct the grievous offense of spelling out "config" in the wificonfig command, instead of sticking to the widely accepted "cfg" convention, but loathe as I am to admit it, there may have been additional reasons for the change. This doc was written by the Solaris Documentation Team, and it not only compares the major features and command sequences in Solaris 11 to those in Solaris 10, but it links you to the sections of the documentation that explain them in detail. - Rick Website Newsletter Facebook Twitter

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  • How to Test and Deploy Applications Faster

    - by rickramsey
    photo courtesy of mtoleric via Flickr If you want to test and deploy your applications much faster than you could before, take a look at these OTN resources. They won't disappoint. Developer Webinar: How to Test and Deploy Applications Faster - April 10 Our second developer webinar, conducted by engineers Eric Reid and Stephan Schneider, will focus on how the zones and ZFS filesystem in Oracle Solaris 11 can simplify your development environment. This is a cool topic because it will show you how to test and deploy apps in their likely real-world environments much quicker than you could before. April 10 at 9:00 am PT Video Interview: Tips for Developing Faster Applications with Oracle Solaris 11 Express We recorded this a while ago, and it talks about the Express version of Oracle Solaris 11, but most of it applies to the production release. George Drapeau, who manages a group of engineers whose sole mission is to help customers develop better, faster applications for Oracle Solaris, shares some tips and tricks for improving your applications. How ZFS and Zones create the perfect developer sandbox. What's the best way for a developer to use DTrace. How Crossbow's network bandwidth controls can improve an application's performance. To borrow the classic Ed Sullivan accolade, it's a "really good show." "White Paper: What's New For Application Developers Excellent in-depth analysis of exactly how the capabilities of Oracle Solaris 11 help you test and deploy applications faster. Covers the tools in Oracle Solaris Studio and what you can do with each of them, plus source code management, scripting, and shells. How to replicate your development, test, and production environments, and how to make sure your application runs as it should in those different environments. How to migrate Oracle Solaris 10 applications to Oracle Solaris 11. How to find and diagnose faults in your application. And lots, lots more. - Rick Website Newsletter Facebook Twitter

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  • The Loneliest Road in America and the OTN Garage

    - by rickramsey
    Source I never told anyone how the image of the OTN Garage on Facebook came to be. I took the Facebook picture on Route 50 in Nevada, USA, in October of 2010. I was riding from Colorado to Oracle OpenWorld in San Francisco, so it was probably October. Route 50 is known as "The Loneliest Road in America." There are roads across Nevada that have even LESS traffic, but Route 50 still one. desolate. road. Although I have seen stranger things while riding along Nevada's Extraterrestrial Highway, I still run across notable oddities every time I ride Route 50. Like the old man with a bandolero of water bottles jogging along the side of the highway in the middle of the day, 50 miles from the closest town. First ultra-marathoner I'd seen in action. He waved at me. Or the dozen Corvettes with California license plates driving toward me, all doing the speed limit in the middle of nowhere because they were being tailed by half a dozen Nevada state troopers. #fail. I don't remember which town I was in, but I noticed the building when I stopped at the gas station. While standing there pouring fuel into the Harley, the store caught my eye. So I pulled the bike in front and walked inside. The owner is a little old lady, about 100 years old. Most of the goods she had on the shelves looked like they had been placed there during WWII. She was itty bitty and could barely see over the counter, but she was so happy when I bought a bar of Hershey's chocolate that she gave me a five cent discount. I took a few pictures and, when I got back, Kemer Thomson, who sometimes blogs here, photoshopped the OTN Garage and Oil Change signs onto it. The bike is a 2009 Road King Classic with a Bob Dron fairing and a Corbin heated seat. The seat came in handy when I rode home over Tioga Pass. The Road King is a very comfy touring bike with a great Harley rumble. I'm kinda sorry I sold it. When I stopped for fuel about 75 miles down the road at the next town, I peeled back the chocolate bar. I had turned into powder. Probably 50 years ago. - Rick Website Newsletter Facebook Twitter

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  • Understanding Process Scheduling in Oracle Solaris

    - by rickramsey
    The process scheduler in the Oracle Solaris kernel allocates CPU resources to processes. By default, the scheduler tries to give every process relatively equal access to the available CPUs. However, you might want to specify that certain processes be given more resources than others. That's where classes come in. A process class defines a scheduling policy for a set of processes. These three resources will help you understand and manage it process classes: Blog: Overview of Process Scheduling Classes in the Oracle Solaris Kernel by Brian Bream Timesharing, interactive, fair-share scheduler, fixed priority, system, and real time. What are these? Scheduling classes in the Solaris kernel. Brian Bream describes them and how the kernel manages them through context switching. Blog: Process Scheduling at the Thread Level by Brian Bream The Fair Share Scheduler allows you to dispatch processes not just to a particular CPU, but to CPU threads. Brian Bream explains how to use and provides examples. Docs: Overview of the Fair Share Scheduler by Oracle Solaris Documentation Team This official Oracle Solaris documentation set provides the nitty-gritty details for setting up classes and managing your processes. Covers: Introduction to the Scheduler CPU Share Definition CPU Shares and Process State CPU Share Versus Utilization CPU Share Examples FSS Configuration FSS and Processor Sets Combining FSS With Other Scheduling Classes Setting the Scheduling Class for the System Scheduling Class on a System with Zones Installed Commands Used With FSS -Rick Follow me on: Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Personal Twitter | YouTube | The Great Peruvian Novel

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  • The Jack LaLanne School of Sysadmins

    - by rickramsey
    Two of my childhood heroes were Tarzan and Jack LaLanne. Tarzan was an obvious choice: what boy wouldn't want to spend his days bungee jumping through the jungle with his own pack of gorillas? Jack Lalanne had a disturbing habit of wearing stretch pants, but he was so damn fit for an old guy that you couldn't help but be impressed. Especially back then, when nobody knew what a dumb bell was, much less Cross-Fit. Here's what he did to celebrate his 70th birthday. Sooner or later we all face a choice in our careers: surrender to the life of a has-been like Bruce Sprinsteen's baseball player or become an unstoppable sysadmin like Jack Lalanne. If you'd rather keep on fighting like Jack, give these resources a look. Brian Bream's blog provides specific suggestions for keeping your skills up to date. The video interviews describe the types of technologies that are challenging what you used to know. Blog: The Old School Sysadmin - A Dying Breed? by Brian Bream "The sysadmin role has been far too dependent on performing repetitive tasks and working in a reactionary mode ... the sysadmin must grow a much larger skill set to be successful. Don’t grow vertically in one technology, grow horizontally amongst many technologies." Just one of the suggestions Brian Bream provides in this excellent blog post. Video: Freeing the Sysadmin From Repetitive Tasks Interview with Marshall Choy Marshall Choy, Director of Optimized Solutions at Oracle was once a sysadmin. And a Solaris engineer. He explains what optimized solutions are, how they are developed and tested, how they handle patching, and how these vertically integrated systems impact the job and duties of a sysadmin. Video: The Oracle Database Appliance Interview with Bob Thome Bob Thome, Senior Director of Product Management, explains what makes the Database Appliance simple, reliable, and affordable, and how it could change the economies and processes of the data center. Video: Why Pinellas County Chose Oracle Exalytics Interview with Gautham Gautham (pronounced like Batman's Gotham) recently led an effort to refresh the Pinellas County hardware systems. He'll explain what they were looking for, why they chose Oracle Exalytics, how they became convinced it was the right decision, and how it changed the way they managed their data center. Video: DTrace for System Administrators Interview with Brendan Gregg This video interview will give you an idea of some of the value-add tasks you can perform when you are freed from the reactive mode that Brian Bream describes in his blog. Brendan Gregg describes the best ways for sysadmins to tune deployed applications to get more performance out of them in their particular computing environment photograph of Ford Mustang GT 500 taken at Gateway Museum copyright by Rick Ramsey -Rick Follow me on: Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Personal Twitter | YouTube | The Great Peruvian Novel

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  • How to Find Out Which Devices Are Supported By Solaris 11

    - by rickramsey
    Image of monks gathering on the steps of the main hall in the Tashilhunpo Monastery is courtesy of Alison Whitear Travel Photography. In his update of Brian Leonard's original Taking Your First Steps With Oracle Solaris, Glynn Foster walks you through the most basic steps required to get a version of Oracle Solaris 11 operational: Installing Solaris (VirtualBox, bare metal, or multi-boot) Managing users (root role, sudo command) Managing services with SMF (svcs and svcadm) Connecting to the network (with SMF or manually via dladm and ipadm) Figuring out the directory structure Updating software (with the IPS GUI or the pkg command) Managing package repositories Creating and managing additional boot environments One of the things you'll have to consider as you install Solaris 11 on an x86 system is whether Solaris has the proper drivers for the devices on your system. In the section titled "Installing On Bare Metal as a Standalone System," Glynn shows you how to use the Device Driver utility that's included with the Graphical Installer. However, if you want to get that information before you start installing Solaris 11 on your x86 system, you can consult the x86 Device List that's part of the Oracle Solaris Hardware Compatibility List (HCL). Here's how: Open the Device List. Scroll down to the table. Open the "Select Release" pull-down menu and pick "Solaris 11 11/11." Move over to the "Select Device Type" pull-down menu, and pick the device type. Or "All." The table will list all the devices of that type that are supported by Solaris 11, including PCI ID and vendor. In the coming days the Solaris Hardware Compatibility List will be updated with more Solaris 11 content. Stay tuned. - Rick Ramsey Website Newsletter Facebook Twitter

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  • Solaris 11 Resources for System Administrators

    - by rickramsey
    Have too much to worry about? Let us lighten the load. OTN's job is to filter through all the available resources and take you straight to the content that will help you do your job. For starters ... Oracle Solaris 11 Documentation Library Rock-solid instructions and background from the best tech writers in the business. Includes: Getting Started (including What's New and Release Notes) Installing and Updating (includes info about IPS) Administration Guide Security Guide Working With the Desktop Developing Applications for Solaris 11 Reference Manuals Important Information from Previous Releases Related Information Legal Notes Oracle Solaris 11 Training Oracle University offers training and certification for sysadmins at all levels. If you're familiar with Oracle Solaris 10, these courses are the best way to become familiar with Solaris 11: What's New in Oracle Solaris 11 (self-study) Transition to Solaris 11 - classroom and virtual Solaris 11 Administration - classroom and virtual Solaris 11 Advanced Administration - classroom and virtual These are the education paths for Oracle Certifications on Solaris 11: Oracle Certified Associate Oracle Certified Professional Courses for Solaris System, Network, and Security Administration - scroll to bottom of page for Solaris courses Indexes and Feeds of Our Best How-To Articles We update these indexes and feeds only after we read through the available content and select the best. These are our personal recommendations by topic, product, or audience. We'll be adding content about Oracle Solaris 11 in the coming days and weeks. Keep an eye out. All Systems Indexes Solaris 11 Collection All System Feeds OTN Systems Community Home Page Our Home Page is the same as the front page of a newspaper, but without the advertising. Latest articles, latest useful content from the community, plus links to all the other resources available on OTN. ... And If You Want to Be The First To Know After we select the best content, the first thing we do is hang out at the OTN Garage and talk about it.  Every once in a while we talk about cool cars and motorcycles, too: On Facebook On Twitter On Our Blog - Rick Ramsey Website Newsletter Facebook Twitter

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  • December 3 is Stephanie Choyer Day

    - by rickramsey
    I don't answer Stephanie Choyer's email just so I can enjoy her French accent when she calls. "Reek! Reek! Why do joo not answer my eemails?" Without the French, life on Earth would be so much poorer. No, they don't bring to the party any motorcycles that grow chest on your hair, and the Citroen is such a frightening study in Automobile design that I don't dare climb inside one. But they have French architecture. French sidewalks. French villages. The French Alps. Grenoble. French cheese. French wine. And that glorious French accent. If I were French, I'd spend all my time enjoying being French. Which makes the work that Stephanie does day in and day with our hard-edged technologies and stubborn technologists so admirable. Oracle Solaris 11 Resources for Sysadmins and Developers The page in the link above represents the work of many people, but it was Steph who rounded them up. And it wasn't easy. I know, because I ran and hid from her on many, many occasions. But she was tireless. "Reek. Reek. Why have you not published Glynn's article? Pleeeease, you must!" Remember when tech companies gave you a simple choice? You could either read the 27,000 pages of documentation or a double-sided data sheet. Which will it be, pal? Then they started writing white papers. 74 pages of excellent prose did a beautiful job of explaining why the technology was fantastic, but never told you how to use it. Well, have you taken a look at these? How-To Technical Articles for System Admins and Developers Now you can get wicked excited about a cool technique described in a 74-page white paper, and find a technical article that shows you exactly how to use it. The wicked smart marketing folks on the Oracle Solaris team wrote them, but it was Steph who bribed them with a Cabernet or beat them over the head with a baguette until all that work was finished and posted on OTN. There are songs about French wine, but not about French vintners. There are songs about French cities, but not about French bricklayers. About French sidewalks, but not about the French policemen who keep them safe. As far as I know, there are no songs about OTN, but if there were, they would probably neglect to mention Steph. Which is why today, Dec 3rd, we celebrate Stephanie Choyer Day. We dedicate this day to our relentless, hardworking, tireless, patient and friendly French colleague with the delightful accent. If I knew how to speak French, I'd say "Thanks for all you do" in French. But I don't speak French. And I don't trust online translations. I'd probably wind up saying "My left foot yearns for curdled milk." So here it is in plain old English: Thank you, Stephanie. psssst! about that documentation and those white papers ... In case you haven't noticed, the Oracle Solaris doc team has done some pretty cool things with the Solaris docs. And those white papers are interesting reading, well worth setting aside some time. Because with Solaris, as you know, it's not just about getting by with a rudimentary grasp of the basics. It's about the amazing stuff savvy sysadmins and developers can do when they really understand it. Find them here: White Papers Documentation And don't forget training! - Rick Website Newsletter Facebook Twitter

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  • Filtering Your Content

    - by rickramsey
    Watch it directly on YouTube You can't always get what you want, but we do try to get you what you need. Use these OTN System Collections to see what's been published lately in your area of interest: Sysadmin Collection Developer Collection OTN ystems Collection See all collections (work in progress) If you prefer to use your RSS feeder, try this page: RSS Feeds for OTN Systems Content - Rick System Admin and Developer Community of OTN OTN Garage Blog OTN Garage on Facebook OTN Garage on Twitter

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  • Is Linear Tape File System (LTFS) Best For Transportable Storage?

    - by rickramsey
    Those of us in tape storage engineering take a lot of pride in what we do, but understand that tape is the right answer to a storage problem only some of the time. And, unfortunately for a storage medium with such a long history, it has built up a few preconceived notions that are no longer valid. When I hear customers debate whether to implement tape vs. disk, one of the common strikes against tape is its perceived lack of usability. If you could go back a few generations of corporate acquisitions, you would discover that StorageTek engineers recognized this problem and started developing a solution where a tape drive could look just like a memory stick to a user. The goal was to not have to care about where files were on the cartridge, but to simply see the list of files that were on the tape, and click on them to open them up. Eventually, our friends in tape over at IBM built upon our work at StorageTek and Sun Microsystems and released the Linear Tape File System (LTFS) feature for the current LTO5 generation of tape drives as an open specification. LTFS is really a wonderful feature and we’re proud to have taken part in its beginnings and, as you’ll soon read, its future. Today we offer LTFS-Open Edition, which is free for you to use in your in Oracle Enterprise Linux 5.5 environment - not only on your LTO5 drives, but also on your Oracle StorageTek T10000C drives. You can download it free from Oracle and try it out. LTFS does exactly what its forefathers imagined. Now you can see immediately which files are on a cartridge. LTFS does this by splitting a cartridge into two partitions. The first holds all of the necessary metadata to create a directory structure for you to easily view the contents of the cartridge. The second partition holds all of the files themselves. When tape media is loaded onto a drive, a complete file system image is presented to the user. Adding files to a cartridge can be as simple as a drag-and-drop just as you do today on your laptop when transferring files from your hard drive to a thumb drive or with standard POSIX file operations. You may be thinking all of this sounds nice, but asking, “when will I actually use it?” As I mentioned at the beginning, tape is not the right solution all of the time. However, if you ever need to physically move data between locations, tape storage with LTFS should be your most cost-effective and reliable answer. I will give you a few use cases examples of when LTFS can be utilized. Media and Entertainment (M&E), Oil and Gas (O&G), and other industries have a strong need for their storage to be transportable. For example, an O&G company hunting for new oil deposits in remote locations takes very large underground seismic images which need to be shipped back to a central data center. M&E operations conduct similar activities when shooting video for productions. M&E companies also often transfers files to third-parties for editing and other activities. These companies have three highly flawed options for transporting data: electronic transfer, disk storage transport, or tape storage transport. The first option, electronic transfer, is impractical because of the expense of the bandwidth required to transfer multi-terabyte files reliably and efficiently. If there’s one place that has bandwidth, it’s your local post office so many companies revert to physically shipping storage media. Typically, M&E companies rely on transporting disk storage between sites even though it, too, is expensive. Tape storage should be the preferred format because as IDC points out, “Tape is more suitable for physical transportation of large amounts of data as it is less vulnerable to mechanical damage during transportation compared with disk" (See note 1, below). However, tape storage has not been used in the past because of the restrictions created by proprietary formats. A tape may only be readable if both the sender and receiver have the same proprietary application used to write the file. In addition, the workflows may be slowed by the need to read the entire tape cartridge during recall. LTFS solves both of these problems, clearing the way for tape to become the standard platform for transferring large files. LTFS is open and, as long as you’ve downloaded the free reader from our website or that of anyone in the LTO consortium, you can read the data. So if a movie studio ships a scene to a third-party partner to add, for example, sounds effects or a music score, it doesn’t have to care what technology the third-party has. If it’s written back to an LTFS-formatted tape cartridge, it can be read. Some tape vendors like to claim LTFS is a “standard,” but beauty is in the eye of the beholder. It’s a specification at this point, not a standard. That said, we’re already seeing application vendors create functionality to write in an LTFS format based on the specification. And it’s my belief that both customers and the tape storage industry will see the most benefit if we all follow the same path. As such, we have volunteered to lead the way in making LTFS a standard first with the Storage Network Industry Association (SNIA), and eventually through to standard bodies such as American National Standards Institute (ANSI). Expect to hear good news soon about our efforts. So, if storage transportability is one of your requirements, I recommend giving LTFS a look. It makes tape much more user-friendly and it’s free, which allows tape to maintain all of its cost advantages over disk! Note 1 - IDC Report. April, 2011. “IDC’s Archival Storage Solutions Taxonomy, 2011” - Brian Zents Website Newsletter Facebook Twitter

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  • Is This How the Execs React to Your Recommendations?

    - by rickramsey
    Well then, do your homework next time! The friendly folks on the Solaris team have made that a little easier. They have put together a list of resources to help you evaluate Oracle Solaris 11. Evaluating Oracle Solaris 11 The've got demos. They've got podcasts. They have content to find out what's involved in upgrading from Oracle Solaris 10. Content to find out how to migrate from a different OS. Plus a link to the Pre-flight checker and the Solaris 11 Cheat Sheet. And more. All in one place. So if you decide Solaris 11 is not for you, you'll be able to explain why. And if you decide that Solaris 11 is right for you, you'll have the facts to back up your decision. Nobody likes to be laughed at by a stupid camel. - Rick Website Newsletter Facebook Twitter

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  • Similar But Not The Same

    - by rickramsey
    A few weeks ago we published an article that explained how to use Oracle Solaris Cluster 3.3 5/11 to provide a virtual, multitiered architecture for Oracle Real Application Cluster (Oracle RAC) 11.2.0.2. We called it ... How to Deploy Oracle RAC on Zone Clusters Welllllll ... we just published another article just like it. Except that it's different. The earlier article was for Oracle RAC 11.2.0.2. This one is for Oracle RAC 11.2.0.3. This one describes how to do the same thing as the earlier one --create an Oracle Solaris Zone cluster, install and configure Oracle Grid Infrastructure and Oracle RAC in the zone cluster, and create an Oracle Solaris Cluster resource for Oracle RAC-- but for version 11.2.0.3 of Oracle RAC. Even though the objective is the same, and the version is only a dot-dot-dot release away, the process is quite different. So we decided to call it: How to Deploy Oracle RAC 11.2.0.3 on Zone Clusters Hope you can keep the different versions clear in your head. If not, let me know, and I'll try to make them easier to distinguish. - Rick Website Newsletter Facebook Twitter

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  • How to Search for (and Find) Solaris Docs

    - by rickramsey
    Just the other day, I went to the recently-released Oracle Solaris 11 library to search for information about the print service changes. I knew there had been changes in Oracle Solaris 11, but could not remember the new approach to printing. So, being the optimist that I (never) am, I went to the Oracle Solaris 11 Information Library on docs.oracle.com and typed "print service" into the search box. Imagine my surprise when the response back was: We did not find any search results for: print service site:download.oracle.com url:/docs/cd/E23824_01. OMG! WTF? Are you kidding me? After throwing a few stuffed animals at my computer screen, I tried again. Is search broken? Well, sort of (and I'm trying to get it fixed). In the meantime, however, there is a reasonably simple user workaround. Possibly unnoticed by most people, there is a Within drop-down menu on the Oracle search results page. If you simply open the Within menu, select Documentation, and click the little magnifying glass again, you (should) get the expected results. Is it perfect? No, but at least it's an improvement over being completely broken. - Janice Critchlow, Information Architect, Systems Website Newsletter Facebook Twitter

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