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Sep 1st, 2011 — Sep 11th, 2011 Generate the Custom HTML Email for this Issue
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Oracle
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Core Factor for T4 published
Suggestion Is that T4 Will Perform as Promised
Oracle has published an update to the Processor Core Factor Table, according to a blog post by Stefan Hinker. This update lists the still unreleased T4 CPU with a factor of 0.5, which leaves the license cost per socket the same compared to T3 while putting T4 in the same league as SPARC64 VII+ and all current x86 CPUs. A later announcement is expected that will provide performance details, although this core factor seems to confirm that T4 will deliver on Oracle's performance claims.
IT - Storage
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Data Loss Prevention
eWeek (September 1, 2011)
"Data recovery specialist Kroll Ontrack advises some of the world's largest and most successful companies on best practices for protecting and backing up their data ..."

Losing data causes pain, physically and mentally to everyone up and down the food chain. If you you’re the cause multiply by 100. "The Top 10 Most Common Mistakes That Cause Enterprises to Lose Data" are listed, turns out there is no breakthrough insights, just executing the details that have been drubbed in since day one.

    SSD Are Worth Every Penny and More
    ComputerWorld (September 6, 2011)
    " ... SSDs use nonvolatile NAND flash memory chips, which are cheaper than DRAM chips but are still as much as 18 times more expensive than 15,000-rpm Fibre Channel or serial SCSI (SAS) drives ..."

    SSDs have been around for over 20 years and still run 8-9 times the cost of traditional disk systems. Despite the cost, when the problem is I/O with small blocks the cost is insignificant. So if you are asking "Are Costly SSDs Worth the Money? Enterprise Users Say Absolutely" across the board. The question isn't whether you need one, but where do you get the biggest bang for the buck.

    Free and Open Source S/W
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    Bossie Awards 2011: The Best Open Source Desktop and Mobile Software
    Winnners Include VirtualBox VM
    Here are the categories for which 2011 Bossie Award winners have been named:

    • Best Open Source Software
    • Best Open Source Desktop and Mobile Software
    • Best Open Source Application Development Software
    • Best Open Source Data Center and Cloud Software

    VirtualBox won with this endorsement: "A free-to-use and open source virtualization solution for desktop environments, VirtualBox changed hands from Sun to Oracle when the latter bought the former. That hasn't changed the pace or tenor of its development, though, and the last few revisions -- including a major update to the left of the decimal point -- have continued to pile on reasons to ditch commercial alternatives. For anyone who even dabbles in virtualization, it's gone from useful to must-have."

    Solaris
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    cluster check: One of Solaris Cluster's Best Kept Secrets
    Gives More Capability to Adminstrators

    cluster check is "one of the best kept secrets of Oracle Solaris Cluster," blogs Ed McKnight. He writes that the latest set of enhancements to cluster check focuses on validating clusters during installation and initial configuration, which enables administrators to perform the most important of the Enterprise Installation Services (EIS) checks themselves. A further important change that McKnight points out is in the titling of check results in progress reporting. He adds that there are now some 40 new checks.

    MySQL
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    Oracle Releases MySQL Installer for Windows
    New Installer Streamlines Deployment, Extends High Availability to Windows Server 2008 R2
    Oracle's newly released MySQL Installer for Windows enables users to provision and deploy MySQL in minutes, allowing developers and DBAs to accelerate time to market. Oracle has in addition completed certification of MySQL Enterprise Edition for Windows Server 2008 R2 Failover Clustering, which enables Windows users to deploy business-critical applications that demand high levels of availability.
    MySQL Enterprise Monitor 2.3.6 Now in GA
    Release Fixes Several Bugs
    Oracle announces the GA release of MySQL Enterprise Monitor 2.3.6, now available for download on the My Oracle Support (MOS) web site. It will shortly be available via Oracle E-Delivery as well. This is a maintenance release that fixes a number of bugs. More information on the contents of this release are available in the changelog. Binaries for the new release are available on My Oracle Support.
    IT - CxO
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    Leadership Qualities
    Silicon.com (August 30, 2011)
    "It's tough to take a place at the executive top table, so knowing which features will make you stand out from your peers as an IT leader is essential. Mark Samuels reports ..."

    Getting inputs from five different CIOs and you have "The Five Essential Ingredients for Being a Great CIO". Turns out the key is not so much IT but in understanding the needs of your users, hiring the right team, pointing them in the right direction and then getting out of the way.

    DonÂít Lose Your Best People
    CIO (August 31, 2011)
    "Michael Greco, a partner in the Employee Defection & Trade Secrets Practice Group at law firm Fisher & Phillips LLP, identified several warning signs that indicate your best IT employees may be ready to accept job offers from your competitors ..."

    When good people start to leave you have big problems; not the least of which is dealing with average workers. Here are "5 Signs Your Competitors Will Steal Your Best IT Workers". One of the true benchmarks of a good leader is making sure you people want to come to work the next day. Notice the key word 'want'; this is not the same as 'have'.

    Making Friends with End Users
    Silicon.com (September 6, 2011)
    "Tension between end users and the IT department is not a new phenomenon and, thanks to growing consumerisation of technology coupled with increased pressure for IT staff to do more with less, it's not one that shows signs of lessening any time soon ... "

    As a leader your job is to make friends, likewise your job isn't to make enemies, your job is to solve business problems. So why do end-users have issues with IT? Here are "Eight Reasons Why Workers Hate the CIO ¬Ė and How to Win Them Back". Hate may be too strong a word, but the emotional side is to big to ignore.

    IT - DR
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    Without a Plan ThereÂís Little Hope
    Continuity Central (September 5, 2011)
    "Business continuity planning can sometimes seem an overwhelming task, especially when budgets are tight and resources are limited ... Rob Prinzo offers five strategic steps which will help business continuity managers become more effective planners ..."

    As the old saying goes, hope is not a strategy and that bodes correctly for Business Continuity as well. Looking at BC initially looks like an endless abyss with everyone needing attention. If you are "Struggling to Plan" for BC then these five steps will at least shed a little light.

    9/11 Lessons
    ComputerWorld (September 9, 2011)
    "In the decade since the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, physical security, human contingency planning and an evolution in technological capabilities have improved the odds that business can carry on during -- and after -- a disaster ..."

    As is often the case life gives the test before it gives the lesson. This was especially true 10 years ago this weekend. "9/11: Top Lessons Learned for Disaster Recovery" was very devastating not only to the psyche of the people involved but from the companies that had to cope with the loss. In the aftermath companies around the world have adjusted their BU, DR and BC procedures to make the most of hard lessons and get ready for the next test.

    Test, Test and Retest
    Virtualization Review (March 6, 2011)
    "... the whole point of having DR systems may also be lost if they are not tested, yet in many cases, that is the case. Jon Toigo, CEO of IT consultancy Toigo Partners International, warns against such omissions ..."

    Everyone knows that DR without a test is no DR plan at all; so why are companies so lackadaisical when the subject is DR testing? The bottom line, who knows. Here are "4 Ways to Make Disaster Recovery Testing Less Painful"; DR testing is expensive in terms of people, resources and time and when you need a DR plan all those tests are priceless.

    IT - Networks
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    IPv6 Will Not Kill IPv4
    NetworkWorld (September 6, 2011)
    "Much of the conversation around IPv6 has been based on the fear of IPv4 address exhaustion and the impending collapse of the Internet if we don't migrate. If we don't comply, customers will be unable to reach our sites and we will simply disappear from the electronic world ..."

    Regardless of the FUD being spread about by all sorts of nefarious vendors and pundits, IPv6 does not mean the end of IPv4 any time soon. On the other hand waiting will cost more and under pressure. If you are considering "IPv6 Migration, Do It for the Right Reasons" and not just because you read that IPv4 is kaput.

      IT - Operations
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      Automating Where Ever Possible
      NetworkWorld (September 6, 2011)
      "Today's IT environments are more complex than ever, comprised, as they are, of physical, virtual and cloud resources, a variety of applications and platforms and complex interdependencies, and the need to balance resources among often-conflicting demands. Automation can help ..."

      Ever compare the cockpits of a WWII bomber with today’s digital airliners. Huge difference; the systems are more complex but the cockpits are a example of automation, letting pilots make decisions and not just monitor systems. The same needs to be true for data centers, what’s needed are "Automation Tools for Complex Environments"; things go wrong to fast for human interpretation, but not so fast that decisions can't be made if the information is timely, accurate and reliable.

        Bringing Rogue Users Back
        NetworkWorld (August 31, 2011)
        " ... other than shadow IT being a bigger headache than ever before, what else is new? Your response to it. More CIOs are taking a proactive stance on rogue IT rather than struggling against an unstoppable tide of change ..."

        Users are an impatient group, they tend to want everything and they want it yesterday. If you don’t provide the service quickly enough they have no hesitation about solving the problem themselves. Here are "Three Steps to Combating Rogue IT" and there doesn't need to be threats if you treat them right.

          Customer Service and the Librarian
          IT Business Edge (September 1, 2011)
          "In my experience, IT help desks often focus on underlying technologies rather than how those technologies are used by business folks. Many IT pros could learn from how librarians communicate with their customers ..."

          Call centers for a variety of reasons, some valid and some not, do not have the best relationships with their customers. To that end "IT Professionals Can Learn from Librarians" in providing better customer service.

            IT - Security
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            An Ounce of Prevention Is Not Enough
            Dark Reading (September 8, 2011)
            "It's not about prosecuting the nameless, faceless attackers behind these relentless targeted attacks -- it's about minimizing the damage they incur ..."

            The problem with many security pros is that the mind set is on keeping the bad guys out; the problem is that in many cases they are already in. In Trying to "Catch An APT you may have missed the boat"; the problem now becomes one of minimizing the damage. This isn't a reflection on the security pros abilities, merely recognition of the hard facts.

            Breakthrough in Memory Density
            Storage Newsletter (September 6, 2011)
            "Discovery of new magnetic data writing technique could lead to next generation computer memory ..."

            Researchers in Spain have found a way to dramatically increase the density, increase the speed of writes, reduce the power and provide long term stability. This "New Magnetic Data Writing Technique" is a long on the technology and light on the end results.

              IT - Careers
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              You Know Who They Are
              InfoWorld (February 1, 2010)
              "Everybody keeps a list of the people who make their jobs and lives more difficult, even if they never write it down. It's a safe bet that IT pros' lists are longer than most. You might think IT's greatest enemies are cyber criminals and malware authors ..."

              This is an oldie but goodie. Every IT person has people that do everything in their power to make their lives miserable; there are also good people, but the bad ones really stick in our gut. Here’s a synopsis of "The Technology Pro’s Greatest Enemies". If you only have one or two of the six you’re way ahead of the game.

                IT - Social Media
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                Taking the Place of the Water Cooler
                InfoWorld (September 7, 2010)
                "Last-century attempts at knowledge management failed dismally. Embracing internal social networks can change that ..."

                Human beings by their nature are social animals; the problem is that in today’s world, the water cooler that used to be the de-facto gathering spot to share personal and business insights don’t exist. In the place is smart phones and their brethren. "The True Value of Social Networking At Work" is to get people to interact, develop trust and be productive, if they share personal information so much the better.

                Storage
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                Creating a Hierarchical Database Backup System with Oracle RMAN and Oracle SAM QFS
                With the Sun ZFS Storage Appliance
                "Creating a Hierarchical Database Backup System Using Oracle RMAN and Oracle SAM QFS with the Sun ZFS Storage Appliance," a 23-page Oracle white paper, describes the implementation of a hierarchical database backup solution that is an ideal solution for users with three or more mission-critical Oracle databases, 40 terabytes (TB) or more aggregate backup data, and a requirement to keep backups on tape for longer than 180 days. With this solution a single DBA can be assigned control and management of database backup, restoration, and recovery.
                IDC Report Finds Seven Consequtive Quarters of Storage Software Revenue Growth
                EMC, Symantec, IBM Lead the Field
                The IDC report "Ongoing Infrastructure Investments Carry Storage Software Revenues to Seventh Consecutive Quarter of Growth in 2Q11" finds a total market value approaching $3.4 billion during the quarter, up 11.3% over the same period last year. IDC reports that this double-digit growth broadly aligned with increased investments made within the server and disk storage systems markets during the same quarter, which suggests that storage software sales benefited from expansive investments made within the infrastructure space. The survey found EMC, Symantec, and IBM were the top ranking storage software suppliers with 24.5%, 15.8% and 14.1% market shares respectively.
                WW Disk Storage Systems Post 10% Y/Y Growth in 2Q11; Systems Capacity Grows to 5353 PB
                IDC Finds EMC Holds onto Lead
                A recent report from IDC, "Worldwide Quarterly Disk Storage Systems Tracker" finds strong growth continuing in the worldwide disk storage systems market in Q211. IDC found the total disk storage systems market grew to just shy of $7.5 billion in revenues, representing 10.2% growth from the prior year's second quarter. Total disk storage systems capacity shipped reached 5,353 petabytes (PB), growing 46.7% year over year. EMC maintained its lead in the external disk storage systems market, followed by IBM and NetApp, who tied for second.
                Top10
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                Top Ten Articles for last few Issues
                Vol 162 Issues 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5; Vol 161 Issues 2, 3 and 4
                We track how frequently each article is viewed on the web site to determine which the readers consider the most important. For last week, the top 10 articles were:

                • T4 - Next Generation SPARC Processor
                • VMware Product Support for Oracle Servers and Storage
                • MySQL Live Virtual Classes
                • Sun ZFS 7000 Storage Appliance 2010.Q3.4.0 Release
                • Who's Using RBAC These Days?
                • Preparing for Solaris 11 Installation: OTN Video
                • Manage Your Storage Environment with Oracle VM Storage Connect Plug-Ins for Oracle VM 3.0
                • Using smpatch to Apply Solaris Cluster Patches and Other Enhancements
                • Deploying Microsoft SharePoint Server on the Sun ZFS Storage Appliance
                • MySQL Relational Database Management"

                The longer version of this article has list of top ten articles for the last 8 weeks.

                  Security
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                  Platform Centric View of Identity and Access Management
                  Adopt Oracle's Integrated Approach to System Implementation
                  The key to assuring system security is latency, blogs Naresh Persaud, and the key to optimal latency is an integrated platform such as Oracle offers that minimizes the latency of change across all applications, enabling enterprises to adapt to the velocity of threats. With latency optimized, Persaud argues, employee job changes, employee separation and re-mediation of employee certification reviews become more securely manageable.
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