DNF Corp Newsletter: May 2009

May 25, 2009

Here is the recap of our May newsletter:

Read the full May newsletter.

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Voyager + RackSwitch = Super fast IP SAN

May 19, 2009

We have great news from our testing lab: The Voyager is our fastest SAN appliance yet. OK, so that isn’t really new news but here’s what our engineers said:

We completed testing the Voyager with many 10Gb Ethernet switches, and found that using BLADE’s RackSwitch G8124 delivers the fastest IP SAN performance with over 950 megabytes/sec.

Wow 950 MB/s is fast! So fast in fact, that our joint Voyager-RackSwitch solution sped of to Vegas, and beat everyone else to the show.  If you are in town, you can check out our solution in booth #1175 at Interop, from May 18-21.

Learn more by checking out the links below:

What is PoE?

May 18, 2009

Guess #1: Privately owned estate?
Guess#2:  Prince of Egypt?
Guess #3: Edgar Allan’s last name?
Guess #4: Wasn’t she the one who sang “Trigger Happy Jack?

Actually, in the surveillance industry, PoE stands for Power over Ethernet. The concept is quite simple: You plug your Ethernet cable to your camera’s Ethernet port and plug the other end of the cable into a PoE switch, and you get power.   Simple enough right? Not quite. There are other factors you must consider when deploying PoE powered cameras, such as PoE switch types and classifications.

Here is a list of the four power classes:

  • Class 1 —  4.5 watts at PoE port; 3.84 watts at device
  • Class 2 —  7.5 watts at PoE port; 6.49 watts at device
  • Class 3 —  15.4 watts at PoE port; 12.95 watts at device
  • Class 0 —  15.4 watts at PoE port; .44 to 12.95 watts at device
  • Not all PoE powered cameras will work with your switch, so you must consider which class your switch and cameras fall under. Want more information on the classifications, check out this article from IPSecurityWatch.

    Advice on how to cut storage costs

    May 15, 2009

    Here’s some great advice from the Enterprise Storage Forum on cutting storage costs.

    • Try flash or solid state disk.  Amazingly enough, with the speedy performance on SSD, it is probably cheaper than adding more memory to your heavy duty database clusters.  I’d recommend trying an ISC with SSD, to save money and still have speedy performance.
    • Use tiers.  You don’t need to keep all of your data on high priced disks.  Mix it up.  Some data on SAS, some on SSD and some on SATA.
    • Use SATA as much as possible.  See the tip above.  I bet 65% of your data can reside on slower disks.  You’ll get more capacity for the money, and have more space to consolidate with.
    • Shop around for deals.  You shop around for your computers, gadgets and cell phone service.  Do the same for your storage.  Most vendors sell through the channel, and one of these channels will have a better deal for the same part number.  Ask your vendor if they have a trade-in program as well.  You might as well get credit for your old, out-of-date systems.
    • Consolidate, consolidate, consolidate.  It doesn’t make sense to have inidividual arrays for every application server, since as you increase servers, you’ll need twice the hardware.  Consolidate over the network with NAS, iSCSI or fibre channel.  Less harware = less ongoing maintenence costs.
    • Try Windows Single Instance Storage feature.  This is a way to dedupe, and make sure you only retain a single copy of each file.  (Ahem email attachments to your team.)
    • Lease equipment. Leasing is a great way to reduce capital expenditures and keep you from dealing with outdated equipment all the time.  Try it.  We all know how Moore’s law works:  next year your system will be outdated.
    • Go open-source.  Have you used Amanda?  It is a great open-source backup application.  Are there other ways for you to leverage opensource?  Look around.  You might be able to get away with FreeNAS for your developers.  No need to spend extra resources on test systems when you don’t need to.

    Check out the full article here.

    Virtualization webinar video available: iSCSI, virtual servers and consolidation

    May 13, 2009

    A couple of weeks ago we did a webinar on virtual servers, iSCSI, vSphere and storage consolidation.

    Quick refresher on the discussion:

    • Setting up iSCSI storage for Virtual Servers
    • Using advanced storage features for improved virtual server management
    • Managing large environments with 50+ virtual servers
    • Why the number of simultaneous iSCSI sessions matters
    • Relying on virtual servers and IP SANs for disaster recovery
    • How ESX 4 will impact your storage environment

    Check out the archived virtualization webinar video or the slide deck.  Enjoy!

    Welkom aan boord, Consolidate IT!

    May 12, 2009

    “Welkom aan boord” = “Welcome aboard” in Dutch.  We just signed up a new distributor in the Netherlands: Consolidate IT.

    Here’s the news release:  StoneFly reaches further in Europe with a new sales channel.

    Are you a European VAR looking for a great source for storage and networking for virtualization or DR projects?  Check out Consolidate!

    Check out our other recent news on our website.

    Virginia Medical Database Gets Hacked

    May 7, 2009

    Did you hear about this one? Apparently, somebody hacked into Virginia Department of Health Professions’ website last week, and is holding state medical records for ransom.  The claims have not been verified as of yet, but the hacker’s note states that he/she broke into the state-run website and destroyed the original and created an encrypted backup file which would be handed over for $10M.  Here’s the note:

    “I have your [expletive]. In my possession, right now, are 8,257,378 patient records and a total of 35,548,087 prescriptions. Also, I made an encrypted backup and deleted the original. Unfortunately for Virginia, their backups seem to have gone missing, too. Uhoh 😦 For $10 million, I will gladly send along the password.”

    A spokesperson from the Department claims that a few of the systems have been restored and complete restoration is due soon. If the statement is true, kudos to the IT department for doing what they should (keeping physical backups).

    Here’s the full article. We’ll keep you up to date as more information is revealed.