Archive for 'niagara'

Niagara boxes deployed!

Posted on August 6, 2006, under general, niagara.

So, earlier this week, we deployed murphy.redbrick.dcu.ie, the T2000 Sun donated as the new main login server for RedBrick.

It’s been named Murphy after RedBrick founder David Murphy, who died tragically early this year. It’s both fitting that a main RedBrick machine be named after him, but also that it is a Sun server. Before being one of Google’s earliest employees in Ireland, David had a successful career at Sun Ireland.

It’s running Ubuntu, and so far the usual problems of a migration have been minimal. There was, as ever, a large number of programs for which users didn’t use the 2 month pre-migration period to tell us were missing, as well as a few binaries in user directories which needed to be recompiled. We’re also having a problem with nscd. But apart from those relatively minor issues (compared to the other migrations in the past!), it’s gone very well indeed, and it’s nice to have 16 Gigabytes of RAM to play with!

Seperately from that, after playing with some different installations on it, I’ve installed the T1000 and plan to deploy that in the next week or two. It’s also performing very well for us, and should make an amazing replacement for the Celeron with 256M of RAM it’s replacing! It will be used as a development host for some Apache work, a web host for some high-traffic sites (including this one) and a few other things. We havn’t decided where to colocate it just yet, but have a few options.

Solar Wind

Posted on May 23, 2006, under general, niagara, photography.

So, this time last week I was in San Francisco, courtesy of Sun, which was brilliant. Originally the plan was that I would be receiving a T2000 on-stage from Jonathan Schwartz during the JaveOne keynote. There were a lot of last-minute changes though, and in the end I managed to evade that, though I did get my access-all-areas badge for the general session – and managed to catch Jonathan Schwartz during the pre-keynote practice.

Union Square

SUN’s Global Communications team did arrange for a few press interviews, to cover the try and buy program. It was a curious experience, although I’ve done more than a few media interviews at this point, it’s always been on political issues, never with “analysts”, who ask very different sorts of questions. Still it was very pressure free, I could do them or not, and there was no line to tow or anything like that, which was good.

I didn’t quite get to meat everyone on my trip, but I did bump into fellow Apache committer Wendy Smoak through pure coincidence, and Tim Bray, who I got to thank for helping me get the T2000, and who put me in his Video blog! Mark was also kind enough to give me a great walking tour of San Francisco.

By far the best thing from the conference, from my point of view at least, was Mark Shuttleworth appearing and giving us some news about Ubuntu. It looks like 6.06 (Dapper) is going to have Sparc as an official distro, which is excellent sign of Fabio‘s great work. Niagara is fully supported the kernel that ships, but alas the T1000 doesn’t quite work yet due to some issues with the Broadcom driver which are currently being blogged about.

Speaking of analysts, the discredited (at least if you follow GrokLaw) analyst Laura DiDio has weighed in on Ubuntu, so now I can confidently predict it will be a roaring success. Actually, over on ftp.heanet.ie, we’re getting ready for what could be an interesting week when 6.06 is actually released.

Goldengate Bridge

Yet more reviews of the T2000 boxes are appearing, including one which is on Linux aswell as Solaris, which gets some interesting results. It’s a bit worrying that only 24 CPUs showed up. There are probably still some T1 Linux kernel issues to be found.

The guys in SUN QA (based in Dublin) are doing some excellent profiling work too, and their Solaris numbers are surpassing mine at this point, so when I get the T1000 online (in a week or two hopefully) I’ll see if I can contribute any more useful feedback.