On-line Opinion Magazine…OK, it's a blog
Random header image... Refresh for more!

Oh, What A Wonderful Day

My battery was dead yesterday, so I put it on the charger so it would be ready to go later. I did it first thing because the broadband was down until 11AM CDT. When I tried to start the car after the charger said it was fully charged, I not only didn’t get the roar of the engine, the alert tone sounded like it was at the bottom of the neighbor’s swimming pool.

So I started my day without the Internet or transportation.

This afternoon I got ‘the call’: a new battery, both front tires really needed to replaced and I had a nail in one of my new rear tires. I have been replacing the tires one a month, so that came as no surprise, and it was only the battery, when it could have been the battery and the alternator. It came in under $600, which isn’t bad considering that they picked the car up and took it to the shop. They promised it tomorrow, so I can hope.

Update: Today was supposed to be the ‘equinox’ but instead of 12 hours, we had 12 hours and 7 minutes. It’s going to be two or three days before we get an equinox….


1 Badtux { 09.23.16 at 12:56 am }

Yeah, after you said that thing about the bottom of a swimming pool after having the charger on it I coulda told you it was the battery. My guess is that you boiled all the liquid out of the battery with your battery charger, causing the impedance to rise, causing the battery charger to think your battery was charged, and that usually happens because the battery has an internal short that’s just enough to convince the battery charger that it needs to push more juice into the battery, more juice, more juice, until enough liquid boils off that no mo juice is the order of the day. Or your battery charger could be shot. Depends on whether it’s a $15 Wally World Special or the latest greatest electronic wizardry.

Ran into your Windows 7 problem with Windows Update. GRR, Microsoft! “Fixed” it by applying the rollup update manually, which then fixed Windows Update too. SIGH. Microsoft. Evil, inept, or both?

2 Bryan { 09.23.16 at 10:30 am }

I gave a tenant a jump start and things went down hill from there. Actually I have a very good charger that gives me voltage and percentage of charge, three charging rates, and settings for three different 12 volt batteries. When I connected it and it told me that the battery was 75% charged, and it reached 100% in 20 minutes on the two amp charging rate, I knew the battery was toast. I tried turning it over even though I knew the battery was certainly toast. They got it started with a jump and drove it back to the shop, but followed with the tow truck. The battery was approaching 5 years, so it was due to die.

I’ll try the fix that worked for you in Win 7.

3 Steve Bates { 09.30.16 at 12:38 am }

Ouch. There’s a lot of car affliction going around these days. The late lamented Bill Bates’s 1994 Cavalier finally quit on me for good and all; my (trustworthy) mechanic said I’d be better off buying a newer car, as parts are hard to find for the Cavalier. So I’m shopping for a car, dammit. And this time around I need to get hand controls; my clever (he boasted) arrangement of sticks and rearranged feet doesn’t work on newer cars. Damned old Chevy; my dad and I got only 22 years out of it. They just don’t make ’em like… uh… never mind!

4 Bryan { 09.30.16 at 8:11 am }

A 20-year-old Saturn was sold when the Honda was purchased in 2007, and so far it has been: two batteries, a set of tires, an oil change once a year, and a tank of gas every other month. The Honda should last at least until 25 so I can get the cheap classic license plates.

5 JuanitaM { 09.30.16 at 3:33 pm }

Bryan, I am just fuming this afternoon. If you’re not in the mood to hear it today, just ignore. I’ll understand – I can barely stand myself right now.

Apparently, Windows 10 had another update this morning and restarted my computer on it’s own. It tried to reboot and failed. It brings up a screen that said something about initializing Watchdog, with several strings of code after that. On browsing my phone, I found someone that solved the problem by going into safe mode and removing the AVG anti-virus. Sounded right to me. Seems I remember something about a Watchdog service in AVG, so it’s possible, right?

That’s where the real headache began. Have you tried to go into safe mode on Windows 10? My computer doesn’t recognize F8 upon booting. It just keeps trying to boot as normal (which of course brought me back to the the strings of code initializing Watchdog again). So, the only prompts that my computer recognizes at boot level are F2 (setup), and F12. Close down and restart several times checking into both to see where safe mode is hidden to no luck.

Back to the phone, and some nice enterprising person had instructions on how to get to safe mode (and apparently it’s not the same for everyone either!!!). Here you go: F12 > ODD > Troubleshoot > Advanced Options > Startup Settings > Restart > Enable Safe Mode with Networking. Now, is it just me, or is there nothing whatsoever intuitive AT ALL about how to find what is a relatively common thing that one might have to do.

I’m through whining, that’s not why I posted today. I need your advice on anti-virus. The person who suggested that I remove AVG said that a separate anti-virus was not necessary with Windows 10. Is this true? I’ve always had a separate AV, and I feel somewhat exposed. LOL.

Grrr…I’ve wasted about 3 hours this afternoon that I really, really needed to use for something else. Okay, I said I was through whining…I lied.

6 JuanitaM { 09.30.16 at 3:36 pm }

Oh, and I’m really sorry for all the cr*p you’ve had, too. The equinox season is not being kind to us.

7 Bryan { 09.30.16 at 7:49 pm }

My latest fight involved telling M$ to bugger off because they deleted my Classic Shell and Classic Shell already had a patched version to get around that. They are calling it Windows 10 1607 now, a reference to their PITA update in July, 2016 when they should call it version 0.85, indicating it wasn’t ready for release.

OK. That is indeed the way they want you to access Safe Boot, which is not the way your owner’s manual talks about. M$ believes that they can handle the anti-virus chores, and a number of the standard AV programs do have conflicts. ESET deals with it by telling M$ to shut up and go away. It turns off all of the M$ stuff except the firewall and coexists with Win 10. It only does this on Win 10, and ignores Windows Defender on Win 7. Windows doesn’t play well with AV software and I had to disable mine to get the Win 10 upgrade. That should have been a big clue that I didn’t want to do it.

Windows Defender is an anti virus program. If you use an ad blocker you should be OK. All of the recent attacks I’ve had were embedded in ads, so I started blocking them. I don’t mind ads, but ESET raises hell when it detects a problem.

8 JuanitaM { 09.30.16 at 9:06 pm }

“a reference to their PITA update in July”


No, it’s not in the owner’s manual, and it isn’t relatable (probably not a word) to any process I’ve ever used or heard of using to get to safe mode. Why should just getting to safe mode require such a process of steps? It’s not like I’m trying to overhaul my registry or write new code into the machine.

I’m finally over my snit now. The dogs always sense my moods and they were looking at each other as if to say “WTF is up with her, did you do something, I don’t think I did anything…”

What really set my hair on fire was when I was FINALLY in safe mode, I thought I would just roll back the computer to a restore point which should solve the immediate problem of not booting. But lo and behold, it told me I had NO restore points to roll back to. What? I had my computer set up to do restore points at regular intervals last I checked. Oh…yeah…the Anniversary update changed a bunch of my settings. Sigh.

Anyway, Bryan, thanks so much for the information about the anti virus. It’s the first time I’ve depended on Windows for that function (and you know how much I trust their opinion), so I feel much better about that now.

Still, you mentioned ESET. Since I don’t feel equipped to repair problems created by viruses, et al., I might prefer to over protect rather than under protect. I looked up ESET, and it has several versions. Which do you use?

Appreciate your allowing me to pick your brain. It’s just that some days this Windows stuff just baffles me!

9 Bryan { 09.30.16 at 10:01 pm }

I use ESET NOD32 Version 9 because I don’t do any instant messaging. I use it on my XP, both Win 7s, and Win 10. It deals with the ‘Net and e-mail and the Ad Guard add on for FireFox. As I said the only attacks I’ve encountered recently have been embedded in ads. There are pathetically obvious attempts in e-mail, but I usually spot them before ESET can look at them and delete them. ESET stops you from read the dangerous ones.

10 Kryten42 { 10.01.16 at 3:37 am }

Hi guys. Sorry to hear about your woes with W10. I expected problems, so I haven’t updated (except for serious security patches) since I installed W10 on the beast in March. Now that my Tablet has W8.1 which I’ve basically hacked back to W7 (kinda), it’s happy. Interestingly, some app’s that won’t run on W10 no mater what I do (even ones that claim W10 compatibility), will run on W8.1 fine. So I guess even though they share a common code base, M$ have really messed up somewhere between W8.1 & W10. I could put W8.1 on the PC, but I’d have to buy another license. M$ crooks have had more than enough money from me! Also, I need 1 W10 machine for a few things & to see if they miraculously fix anything this decade. We can but hope. *shrug*

I also make in image before an update.

The great thing about having an Enterprise LTSB license is that at least I have control, though of course (as Juanita discovered) it is anything but intuitive or simple! In fact, I suspect they have purposely made much of it counter-intuitive to try to make it difficult enough so people won’t bother! And also so that the Corp’s. will have to spent $thousands to send their tech’s on an endless course series to stay up-to-date. Funny, that. 😉

Sadly, they have nobbled the Home version almost completely so that you have very little control at all, & the Pro version is somewhere in between.

I wish you all the best guys! 🙂

11 Bryan { 10.01.16 at 4:37 pm }

Update: The latest update for Win 10 has broken a significant number of machines. They issued the damn thing after their Beta testers reported problems. It isn’t even a 0.85 version. If it works on your machine, and has worked from the first, it works for you. But whoever wrote the software that declared systems suitable failed to check everything, because a significant number of machines aren’t really compatible. My box restarted multiple times, and downloaded one of the updates at least twice.

12 JuanitaM { 10.03.16 at 10:51 am }

Thanks Bryan on the ESET info. I’ll probably end up buying that. My faith in MS to protect my security isn’t high since they don’t seem to care if they break your machine or not! Appreciate your advice.

” They issued the damn thing after their Beta testers reported problems. ”


Since standard Windows 10 doesn’t allow for anything other than automatic updates, you can’t even plan around the possibility of your computer breaking. I lost about 3 working hours right in the middle of a project with a deadline. Had I been able to install it on my schedule, I would have waited until the evening after my paperwork had been submitted (cuz I already KNOW not to trust it).

Yes, Kryten, you had warned me that I had “joined the club” and that it was a dubious designation. LOL.

13 Bryan { 10.03.16 at 12:38 pm }

I just checked for updates on Thunderbird and FireFox. Win 10 versions don’t update to the most current versions on XP and 7. There are patches but they seem to be creating a separate fork to work on Win 10. I previously noted this with LibreOffice.

14 JuanitaM { 10.03.16 at 1:54 pm }

Hmmm. I have Windows 8 upgraded to 10. Wonder how that will go because I have all three of those programs.

2:12 – Updated LibreOffice. Well, that was certainly weird. In attempting to restart, it wouldn’t boot again. Tried to go into safe mode to uninstall LibreOffice, but it wouldn’t go into boot mode this time! Upon clicking on ODD, I just got the circle again! After attempting to restart again, and hitting F12, it just automatically booted and now I have Windows. Geez, Louise, I’m afraid to turn my computer off. I have no idea what it will do when I try to restart. Good grief. I didn’t want this damn Windows 10 anyway, but it forced me into it.

2:49 – Updated Thunderbird. So far, so good, but I’m still reluctant to restart my machine. What will it do next?

2:50 – Checked and Firefox is up to date, so no problems there.

You’re right, Bryan. Any updates to other programs can be problematic with the latest Windows updates (even if you have a Win 8 machine). I just want an operating system that works. I have another job.

15 Bryan { 10.03.16 at 3:09 pm }

FYI – a “fork” is new version of a piece of software that diverges from the main version. For example, my blog uses MariaDB to store all of the content. Maria is a ‘fork’ of mySQL, one of the most common data base programs in use in the Internet. Maria started as patched version of mySQL and took on a life of its own.

Yes, Juanita, the vast number of people with computers want to be users. they are looking for an ‘appliance’ not a job.

You might want to start taking an interest in Matthew. Currently it looks like it is headed for North Carolina as a hurricane next week. It is set to be a major rainmaker even if you ignore the winds and possible tornadoes.

16 JuanitaM { 10.03.16 at 5:17 pm }

Yes, thanks. Since I’m in a part of Virginia that is right on the NC line, I take an interest when the storms appear to be headed in that general direction. Hugo did a huge amount of damage in this area about 30 years ago. I can remember seeing mountainsides that looked like pick-up sticks. So, it can happen.

17 Bryan { 10.03.16 at 6:01 pm }

Some of the discussion has involved FEET of rain. This thing sprang to life and went to Category 5 despite high wind sheer because the humidity is so high. There is a lot of hot water on its path to the Carolinas.

18 JuanitaM { 10.04.16 at 11:20 am }



I did hear that all the NC farmers are desperately trying to bring in the last of the crops before this hits. They were already having a reduced harvest due to heavy rainfalls as it is.

Any reports back on how Haiti is faring? I’m dreading the news. It’s those slow moving ones that really decimate an area. People in low lying towns requested help from towns on higher ground, and they were either refused or just no response to their plea. The other towns have no place to put them.

19 Bryan { 10.04.16 at 9:29 pm }

Apparently the storm dropped a couple feet of rain on the mountains that are the border between Haiti and the Dominican Republic, so there have definitely been flash floods and probably mudslides. They haven’t really recovered from the earthquake and they get hit by their worst hurricane in 50 years.

Any crops still in the field will be lost.

20 JuanitaM { 10.05.16 at 12:54 pm }

There’s still a lot of communications/media down in the Port au Prince area, so it doesn’t appear that we’ll get more details until later. What has managed to be reported (& video) is certainly showing incredible flooding taking out some bridges along the way.

So far, the loss of life is at a minimum, but the real story on that will be told in the coming days. It looks like a situation ripe for disease with the flooding that’s ripping right through the middle of the shanty towns. One video showed quite a few young men dancing in the edge of the roiling waters as it makes its way back to the sea. They have no idea how dangerous that is. This is not a joke. The waters will have bacteria teeming in them as they go through these not so sterile shanty/tent areas.

My heart goes out to the Haitians. The worst is yet to come, and they’ve been living a marginal existence as it is.

21 Bryan { 10.05.16 at 1:06 pm }

Pestilence is always the leading cause of death in disasters and wars and the Haitians discovered that it often accompanies the help from other countries as well as their own.

Power is going to be big problem, and I hope we will send some combat engineers to help establish facilities to receive aid.

22 Kryten42 { 10.07.16 at 11:29 am }

RE: Win10 Anniversary Update

It seems many of the problems are due to bad DLL updates. I’ve had emails like this from some of my software suppliers:

“The Windows 10 anniversary update includes a newer version of msftedit.dll, which breaks hyperlink functionality in the editor.

Until Microsoft fixes this issue we have created a workaround by installing the previously version of the DLL in the Program Files folder.”

I’ve had a few variations (different DLL’s).

Thank you M$! Aint it amazing? *SIGH*

23 Bryan { 10.07.16 at 3:00 pm }

They have done this crap ever since they broke away from their contract with IBM for PC-DOS. They put in features in one version and then drop or change them in the next without warning. Evil or ignorant – it’s a coin toss.

24 Kryten42 { 10.07.16 at 4:34 pm }

It’s becoming a serious PITA! I’ve NEVER had so many updates for software products! I’ve had the situation where I’ve d/l & installed an update, just to have the s/w tell me a few days later there is another update! And then another…

Beyond a joke. How can people seriously think this is OK?

I’ve lost internet for about 3 weeks in total over the past few months! So when the s/w breaks, I’m SOL until I get it back, and then it’s slow! And I’m spending too much time just updating s/w! Plus, they are delaying working on requested features to the s/w because they are spending their time fixing stupid m$ problems!

M$ are evil, greedy and don’t give a fart! They know the majority of users are morons that will put up with whatever crap they give them. I’m starting to think M$ must have controlling shares in the Christian religions! Because ignorance is certainly bliss for them.

25 Bryan { 10.07.16 at 7:06 pm }

I think we can agree that the Windows 10 upgrade and update programs are FUBAR, but someone needs to explain to me why removing the Filezilla program through the control panel resulted in Windows 10 requiring me to restart the computer? I can’t remember ever restarting for a program that wasn’t loaded at boot-up, and even then it was the program that called for a reboot, not the operating system.

26 Kryten42 { 10.07.16 at 8:45 pm }

Oh, I definitely agree! And I don’t even use the crappy M$ updater or do a full update! But I still get screwed.

The other problem is that W10 is anal about locking any file that’s in any directory it considers is *system* related! Even in the User’s dir’s. So, when you uninstall or update, you have to reboot so the locked file can be changed or deleted! Even if you are Administrator. That’s bloody stone age OS! And sometimes, it won’t restart properly. You have to shut the system down. Then start up.

I’ve been going through the myriad policies finding where the unnecessary file locks are and changing them. One good thing about having an Enterprise license! I’m using Linux more and more where I can. But unfortunately, much of my s/w is only on Win and there is nothing similar on linux (or OSX). *shrug*

I had a problem with Dreamweaver & Illustrator from Adobe CS6. I contacted Adobe, and they said I should update to CC (Creative Cloud)! I said no chance as my work is far too valuable to trust to any cloud system! Also, it would cost over $1,000… a YEAR! After a lot of to-and-froing, including me explaining my crappy Internet, they finally offered me an 85% recurring discount on CC! I still said no chance even if they offered to pay me! There was an update to CS6 earlier this year, and I know a lot of designers still use CS6 (It’s still available to buy from Adobe). Finally, they said there should be an update to fix the problems with W10 Anniversary ASAP.

I pine for the days of VMS, RSX-11, RT-11 or even PrimeOS! They at least made sense!

27 Bryan { 10.07.16 at 9:20 pm }

They hired the guy who wrote VMS to create NT, and then proceeded to break it with ‘features’ and ‘compatibility’ patches. I dream fondly of CP/M-86 and GEM.

Adobe is nearly as bad. The Cloud, yeah, right, just like Pippa Middleton, who kept her pictures on iCloud … from whence they were stolen. These people have apparently never heard of non-disclosure agreements. Management is pushing the Cloud, and the support people are trying to make it the panacea.

28 Kryten42 { 10.07.16 at 9:56 pm }

Ah yes… David Cutler. He was also lead developer for RSX-11M @ DEC. 🙂 Cutler threatened to leave DEC (he actually came from DuPont originally), so DEC gave him almost cart blanch and a 200 man team plus his own facility in… Seattle (I think) to develop the *next big thing* to take DEC into the 90’s, the Prism CPU & the Mica OS for it. In ’88 Dec decided to kill the project even though it was near completion for prototyping. Cutler was pissed and Gates hired him soon after. And the rest, is history! The Original NT was so much like VMS 5.0 (architecturally), just with a GUI slapped on. 🙂

Oh yes! I fondly remember CP/M (& it’s brother MP/M which I worked on for a Dual 8086 system ICL were developing to control 16 terminals/users) & DR GEM, as I’ve mentioned before. 🙂

*SIGH* I may get teary… :'(

The *Cloud* is for suckers! And there are so many of them! And no matter how often it bites them, the love it! Yep! Stupidity definitely trumps common sense! (No pun intended… well, maybe a little!) LOL

Oh… speaking of Drumpf, see this?
A Trump victory may not be the worst outcome


29 Bryan { 10.07.16 at 10:15 pm }

People are starting to notice that Trump has no ‘ground game’, no get out the vote effort. I’m in hard-core Republican country and I don’t think I’ve seen a half dozen Trump signs or bumper stickers. It is weird.

30 Badtux { 10.08.16 at 12:51 am }

The thing about the Cloud is that it solves a ton of support costs as well as a huge number of possible security vulnerabilities. Our product is provided primarily via the cloud. The *entire* support cost for our cloud product for five hundred customers is the same as the support cost for *one* on-premise customer because we have control of the entire environment and can manage it in an automated and cost-effective manner. In fact, we’ve estimated that we’d need to charge a six-figure sum per installation to an on-premise customer in order to actually make money supporting that customer, because we’re talking about an enterprise-grade product designed to handle tens of thousands of video cameras, not some shrink wrap word processor.

As for security, our cloud product is far more secure than the on-premise product, because the major components of the cloud product are hidden behind multiple layers of professional-grade firewalls and networks where nothing can get to networks except through multiple layers of bastions. Each component can “see” only the components that it needs to see — nothing else — and nothing that doesn’t need to “see” a component can see it. The API server(s), for example, has one port open to the load balancer servers, and can only read data or issue requests via JSON to a back end processor (there’s multiple of them). The back end processor parses JSON’s, does database operations, and returns results. The database servers can only be seen by the back end processors. The web servers are behind another set of load balancer bastion hosts and talks to the API server load balancer to talk to the API’s. And so forth. And all of this is kept up to date in real time via an automated configuration management system (not accessible from the Internet) that continually checks to make sure all software is up to date and updates it as needed, and all of this is monitored continually for signs of intrusion, DoS attack, and so forth.

The on-premise product, on the other hand, we had to modify to work on a flat network because our customers simply don’t have the sophistication to set up such a complex network topology and there’s no way for us to charge enough to send consultants in to do it for them, and as a result things like, e.g., the database, are hanging out on the same network as IP video cameras — the same IP video cameras that were recently massively hacked in order to do the biggest DDOS in Internet history. We have individual host-level firewalls, but not the multiple levels of network indirection and network-level bastion hosts. And so forth. As a product, it is far less secure than the cloud product, and I worry that we’re making a grave mistake wasting resources on it even if we do have major multinational corporations willing to give us the six-figure sum to implement it for them. Once we lose control of the environment, support costs skyrocket and security plummets… and neither is a recipe, IMHO, for long-term success.

31 Kryten42 { 10.08.16 at 7:11 am }

I agree badtux that it can be made secure, but most cloud companies can’t really be bothered to do more than what they consider *good enough*. After working with Prometeus (iwStack) for a couple years with their cloud based on a modded Cloudstack (though they are investigation the new Openstack), I can kinda understand why. To make any system as secure as possible (and nothing is 100% safe, even if it’s off the Internet entirely) requires money, resources, constant monitoring and constant re-design to keep up with the black hats. If the ROI isn’t good enough, most just don’t/can’t do it. Most companies now expect big returns, so spend the minimum they can get away with. There are some exceptions of course.

The cloud storage war is in full swing. Amazon & Google were somewhat complacent until Backblaze created their B2 system and began undercutting them. Though, they have a problem in that they only have one data center in CA. Dropbox created their own system and moved about 90% off Amazon S3/AWS (which had to hurt) into 3 data centers.

Adobe have had such a history of poor security, I wouldn’t trust them with anything.

I’m old school… If I don’t control it, I don’t trust it! 😀

32 Badtux { 10.08.16 at 2:06 pm }

Security is one reason I’m using Amazon’s cloud rather than rolling my own server in a data center somewhere. Sure, it’d save us a ton of money on hosting costs compared to Amazon’s cloud, but there’s no way that I can create something as secure as Amazon’s cloud without having a security team handy to do it, which would cost more than Amazon’s cloud offering costs us.

The reality is that there comes a time when it’s cheaper to roll your own fully secured data center with security team etc. than to pay Amazon. Dropbox hit that mark, obviously. We’re a long ways from that. Replicating Amazon’s multitudes of security measures is well beyond anything we’re capable of doing at this point in time.

33 Kryten42 { 10.08.16 at 9:15 pm }

Sadly badtux, most people don’t have your level of understanding of *how things work* or level of paranoia (and let’s not mention common sense)! And these fools are the ones who make it bad for everyone!

When Prometeus decided they wanted a cloud based offering (mainly due to client demand) circa 2012/13, they concluded that the offerings available then were either too expensive, restrictive or didn’t have what they required (such as data centers across Europe & Asia). So, they created a subsidiary and designed their own. They were not going to spend a lot on large unified storage system, but after doing the modeling for 5+ years ahead, they concluded they needed a robust reliable and easily scalable system. So they bought the HUS 150. It needed a good redundant network environment around it, so that cost also. It was something of a gamble for a relatively small hosting company, but it’s paid off. 🙂 On the plus side, they guys there have over 2 decades of expedience on average, and their priorities are security, reliability & availability. They’ve done a great job. I think they’ve had something like 30 minutes down time in over 3 years which was mitigated by their cloud (just lost some performance, but was basically unnoticeable). 🙂 They haven’t had a security breach in several years, not a successful one anyway. 🙂

They are looking at getting a Hitachi Virtual Storage Platform in a year or so as the HUS will pretty much be at it’s limits by then, plus they want a 2nd big storage system somewhere. They do have redundant storage systems, but only one that has high performance/scalable architecture.

So yeah, it can be done. But it can’t be done cheaply or with a wing & a prayer! And as you said, you need the right people. And they don’t usually come cheap. 🙂

34 Badtux { 10.08.16 at 9:59 pm }

One thing that is special about Amazon’s VPC offering is that it gives you a virtual private cloud with virtual networks, virtual routers, etc. to easily isolate pieces of your solution from anything that could attack them. Someone would have to penetrate multiple layers of virtual machines to reach our crown jewels, and those multiple layers do not have identical payloads or services thus an attack that works against one won’t work against the next in line. Not to mention that when you have a virtual server that is only allowed to talk to two other virtual servers on two ports, it’s hard to do a lot with it even if you do manage to come in through the one port that it has open to the layer above you.

I’ve looked for other hosting platforms that give me similar ability to partition and hide my virtual infrastructure, and I just can’t find anything that’s cheaper than Amazon that’ll do it. And I already told my boss that we’d need $100,000 in hardware and a full-time guy to do nothing but manage and secure the infrastructure if we were going to do it ourselves (and that full time guy at current Silicon Valley prices is $150K/year minimum). Plus I’d want to hire a security firm to do a security audit of our entire infrastructure, and that would not be cheap either. Our AWS bill isn’t anywhere near high enough to justify that.

35 Kryten42 { 10.09.16 at 2:50 pm }

Yeah. Most Tiger team audits are very costly. The really good ones won’t even talk to you for less than $20k. And the best one (arguably) based in Thailand want’s $100k up front to talk. But they have a long history of success, so… *shrug* Also, morals & ethics are not really their forte, so if you can afford it, anything is possible. 🙂 When I had my security Biz, I was fascinated by the whole Tiger Team thing. I discovered that it actually covers a very broad range and not simply IT security. In fact, it appears NASA were the first to coin the phrase in the 60’s for a highly skilled engineering trouble shooting team. Then the US Military adopted it (mainly for the SEAL Red Cell team), also the NSA have a Red Cell “Cyber Security” team. 🙂 I had to laugh when I googled “Tiger team” as it seems everybody and their dog is calling themselves Tiger Team experts now. LOL Everyone want’s in on the bandwagon!

A couple of the *younger * guys at Prometeus are excited by the new HDS HFS system. 😀 Hitachi say they are basically skipping over an all SSD solution as they are the new bottleneck into high capacity Flash systems. The HFS is actually hybrid SSD/Flash, but they say they are working on new Flash tech that will eventually replace the need for SSD’s. Given that they currently offer up to 384TB @ 1M IOPS & 8 GB/s in a 2U unit, I can see why. 😀 It also needs a LOT less power & far less space than the HUS 150 (which I think uses up to 14 KW, it varies). Compared to about 3.4 KW max for the same storage capacity in HFS units (4 x 2U), that part of the equation is a no-brainer. They designed their network form the start with this future expansion in mind (based on a Brocade 5th/6th gen. FC net), so it would be relatively easy to implement if/when… 🙂

Glad to see you are being smart about your situation, unsurprisingly. 🙂 “Fools rush in…” etc. 🙂 I’ve never been an advocate of changing something that works, or spending money for the shiniest toy that isn’t needed. Though of course, I do also believe in being prepared. Things change, and sometimes can change suddenly. Been there… 🙂

36 Badtux { 10.09.16 at 11:55 pm }

There are a *lot* of people with all-flash systems now, Pure Storage, Violin, and SolidFire being three that come to mind. HDS is late to the party. Where their advantage lies is on the software side of things, being able to cluster and manage the storage, use it as object storage *and* block storage, and so forth. All of that maps just fine onto SSD’s or all-flash. Maybe even better than it mapped onto spinning disks.

My big concern with the all-flash vendors is that they are using proprietary controllers for their flash chips, and if a vendor discontinues a model or goes out of business, getting spares could get tricky. I may have some machines in my machine room for the engineering lab that are six years old now, but they are all commodity machines where I can get spare parts off of eBay without any issues because it’s all commodity parts. Not so much with a Violin or SolidFire…

37 Kryten42 { 10.10.16 at 2:24 am }

Yeah. To use Hitachi’s own words: it hasn’t yet been part of the ‘cool crowd’ in the market for all-flash storage. 🙂

HDS had some hybrid flash based systems for awhile now, including accelerated flash storage modules for the HUS series. The HFS is their latest, with two bigger brothers, F Series (4U, 1.4M IOPS, 24 GB/S), G Series (2U – 10U, up to 4M IOPS, up to 48 GB/S) . The HFS is cheaper and smaller (higher performance density), and generally less power hungry than the majority of other comparable systems that Prometeus looked at, such as EMC ExtremeIO & PureStorage //m70. It would take a lot to make Prometeus to change from HDS now. The support is excellent, the HUS 150 has been brilliant, and they got a good deal for the HFS if/when. 🙂 HDS have kept the HUS series up to date with h/w & s/w updates & additions (such as the accelerated flash storage modules). Which means that the investment in the HUS 150 isn’t wasted or the system is redundant. It will be kept as their primary system and fully supports working with cloud based HFS systems.

Still, there are always risks. there is no such thing as an 100% safe option. All anyone can do is determine the likely risks & decide which are acceptable & what can be reasonably done to minimize them. 🙂