Beta

Slashdot: News for Nerds

×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

cancel ×

83 comments

Let's Open-Source the cloud (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31349408)

Then we can run our own cloud and connect to it from wherever we want. There's a snowball's chance in hell I'm going to run my desktop on hardware that is out of my control, but for local applications, that might be interesting.

Re:Let's Open-Source the cloud (3, Informative)

geekboybt (866398) | more than 4 years ago | (#31349514)

Done and done. http://www.eucalyptus.com/ [eucalyptus.com] - it even replicates the Amazon AWS API, and is available on Ubuntu.

Re:Let's Open-Source the cloud (2, Funny)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 4 years ago | (#31349892)

Holy OS Recursion, Batman!

Re:Let's Open-Source the cloud (4, Funny)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 4 years ago | (#31349926)

Alternately: "Yo dog, I heard you like Ubuntu so I put an Ubuntu on your Ubuntu so you can compute while you compute..."

Re:Let's Open-Source the cloud (1)

ryantmer (1748734) | more than 4 years ago | (#31351744)

Alternately: "Yo dog, I heard you like Ubuntu so I put an Ubuntu on your Ubuntu so you can compute while you compute..."

Why is this modded "Interesting"...? O_o

Re:Let's Open-Source the cloud (1)

xxdinkxx (560434) | more than 4 years ago | (#31360052)

Now that it is in the cloud, does that mean there will be some restful api library for it in ruby? Then again, this is really more of an nx question than anything else. amazon already has ruby libraries.

Re:Let's Open-Source the cloud (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31350638)

Yea because we want to connect to Joe-Blows likely insecure cloud node. Sounds like the same problem most non tinfoil hatery people have with Tor.

Re:Let's Open-Source the cloud (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31350706)

You misunderstood. I want to connect to my cloud. You can connect to yours. Cloud technology is interesting because of its flexibility, hardware utilization and management interface. If I can have all that without the "don't need me own hardware" aspect, I'm interested. I do not care for keeping my data on someone else's hardware.

Re:Let's Open-Source the cloud (1)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 4 years ago | (#31351736)

So you basically want remote desktop, correct? The whole point of "the cloud" (man I hate that term) is that the data is spread out on a bunch of servers, which increases the likelihood that everything will "just work". so unless you are willing to set up or rent your own data center I really don't see how "having your own cloud" is gonna work. If you only have one or two servers it isn't very "cloud like" is it?

Re:Let's Open-Source the cloud (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31350694)

It's interesting for anything non-confidential. Unless you are e-mailing credit card numbers, you know what to protect.
Flawed assumption to expect common sense from users, but for this audience (/.) this is a major file sharing tool.

Re:Let's Open-Source the cloud (1)

jopsen (885607) | more than 4 years ago | (#31351710)

This is more likely to be usable for server admins, who don't like SSH...e.g. people who come from Windows Server and (thus) shouldn't be administrating servers :)

That's nice and all... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31349416)

That's nice and all... how much does EC2 cost again? $70 a month + bandwidth + storage? I think that there are probably better options out there for a "cloud" desktop.

Re:That's nice and all... (1)

clang_jangle (975789) | more than 4 years ago | (#31350460)

That's nice and all... how much does EC2 cost again? $70 a month + bandwidth + storage? I think that there are probably better options out there for a "cloud" desktop.

Yikes -- that makes my verizon data plan look almost reasonable! Really, my laptop has a 160GB HDD, my phone accepts microSD up to 16GB, why would I want to spend so much for glorified online storage?

Re:That's nice and all... (1)

homer_ca (144738) | more than 4 years ago | (#31352028)

EC2 costs $.085/hr for a default standard on-demand instance: 1.7GB RAM, 160GB storage. Data transfer out costs $.15/GB. Pretty expensive just to serve out one desktop with FreeNX, but it supports multiple users. It could be a decent number with 1.7GB RAM.

Which EC2? (1, Funny)

HalAtWork (926717) | more than 4 years ago | (#31349428)

Which EC2 [wikipedia.org] do you mean?

Re:Which EC2? (1)

Lucid 3ntr0py (1348103) | more than 4 years ago | (#31349476)

It's the Chilean Directional Fragmentation Grenade. We're running our desktops on live munitions....

Come on we're moving away from Windows!

Re:Which EC2? (3, Funny)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | more than 4 years ago | (#31350792)

I guess that one is used for mushroom cloud computing...

Re:Which EC2? (0, Redundant)

wintercolby (1117427) | more than 4 years ago | (#31349644)

It must be this one, because somewhere nearby Mick Jagger is singing "Get Off My Cloud":

London EC2, London postal district covering the area of central London around Bishopsgate, Moorgate, and Liverpool Street

Re:Which EC2? (1)

theshowmecanuck (703852) | more than 4 years ago | (#31351428)

... and the Scottish guy is saying, "Hey McCloud, get off of my ewe!"

NOOOOOOOOOO! (2, Informative)

Michael Kristopeit (1751814) | more than 4 years ago | (#31349454)

i seriously had to check if it was april 1st.

EC2 Get offa my cloud (0, Redundant)

wintercolby (1117427) | more than 4 years ago | (#31349490)

It must be this one, because somewhere nearby Mick Jagger is singing "Get Off My Cloud":
London EC2, London postal district covering the area of central London around Bishopsgate, Moorgate, and Liverpool Street

Re:EC2 Get offa my cloud (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31350618)

It must be this one, because somewhere nearby Mick Jagger is singing "Get Off My Cloud":
London EC2, London postal district covering the area of central London around Bishopsgate, Moorgate, and Liverpool Street

Re:EC2 Get offa my cloud (1)

clang_jangle (975789) | more than 4 years ago | (#31350634)

It must be this one, because somewhere nearby Mick Jagger is singing "Get Off My Cloud": London EC2, London postal district covering the area of central London around Bishopsgate, Moorgate, and Liverpool Street.

Re:EC2 Get offa my cloud (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31352420)

It must be this one, because somewhere nearby Mick Jagger is singing "Get Off My Cloud": London EC2, London postal district covering the area of central London around Bishopsgate, Moorgate, and Liverpool Street.

--
Maybe the idiot mods are finding this helpful to understand what "redundant" really means? :D

Re:EC2 Get offa my cloud (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31355420)

It must be this one, because somewhere nearby Mick Jagger is singing "Get Off My Cloud": London EC2, London postal district covering the area of central London around Bishopsgate, Moorgate, and Liverpool Street.

NX is a bitch: use XRDP instead (3, Interesting)

lkcl (517947) | more than 4 years ago | (#31349524)

whenever attempting to get FreeNX working, i've found it to be a total bitch, client-side as well as server-side. by contrast, rdesktop or any other RDP client, client-side and xrdp server-side (which is purely a matter of apt-get install xrdp on debian-based distributions) is so simple to install that a monkey could do it. demo of a monkey (myself) doing exactly that: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nbsydsar5Pk [youtube.com]

Re:NX is a bitch: use XRDP instead (1)

Knightman (142928) | more than 4 years ago | (#31349690)

Couldn't agree more. I've tried to setup NX a couple of times and every time I ended up using RDP, VNC or a Xnest solution instead.

But perhaps the problems with FreeNX is due to the fact that NoMachine also has a commercial version that they want to push.

Re:NX is a bitch: use XRDP instead (1)

bflong (107195) | more than 4 years ago | (#31350722)

I've had the opposite experience. I installed FreeNX on a VM at the office to provide remote desktops to my users. I didn't have any trouble at all setting it up (Kubuntu 9.10), and had it up and running in 15 minutes.

I had not heard of xrdp before. I'll have to look into it. One of the 'problems' with NX is requiring the user to install the NX client on their machine at home. Maybe if I switch I can eliminate that issue. Although I kind of doubt it's as bandwidth efficient and responsive as NX. Even remote 128k dsl connections are really, really smooth over NX.

Re:NX is a bitch: use XRDP instead (1)

characterZer0 (138196) | more than 4 years ago | (#31350778)

I have found it easy to set up FreeNX. But then I discovered that you cannot use private key authentication.

Fail.

Re:NX is a bitch: use XRDP instead (1)

Terrasque (796014) | more than 4 years ago | (#31351088)

FreeNX is a bitch to set up, I agree. I've never got it to work properly.

However, NoMachine's free NX server (which allows up to two logged in users...) have mostly been extemely easy to set up (download packages, dpkg -i *.deb), and performance is in a completely different world than RDP, even win7's. Even on a 30-40 kbps connection I can sometimes forget I'm sitting remotely, because of the speed and response. Try that with RDP, every time you scroll or move something, things just stop. And god forbid you actually have some animation on the screen (constantly running flash ad anyone?)

We also have google's neatx - a rewrite of the open source server. URL : http://code.google.com/p/neatx/ [google.com]

Anyway, try nomachine's free server before you dismiss the technology, my friend.

Re:NX is a bitch: use XRDP instead (1)

Blakey Rat (99501) | more than 4 years ago | (#31352288)

What about sound?

Once of the nice features of RDP is transmission of sound from your computer so I can, for example, listen to my voicemail when remoted into my office computer. Does FreeNX support that?

Re:NX is a bitch: use XRDP instead (1)

Terrasque (796014) | more than 4 years ago | (#31355996)

FreeNX? Not sure, don't think so. NX Free? Yes :)

(yes, I know it's a bit confusing. NX Free is NoMachine closed source client with max limit of two connections, FreeNX is the open source server)

Re:NX is a bitch: use XRDP instead (1)

Blakey Rat (99501) | more than 4 years ago | (#31358066)

Cool. I can't believe people still make remote control software without that feature, frankly.

Although your second sentence really makes me wonder why they don't just change the name...

Re:NX is a bitch: use XRDP instead (1)

felipecn (1496599) | more than 4 years ago | (#31351280)

I have never had a problem installing NX on Debian or Ubuntu. And actually, it have a much better performance than VNC or X11 forwarding over SSH. [No, I've never used xrdp. May check later, though]

Re:NX is a bitch: use XRDP instead (1)

jeffstar (134407) | more than 4 years ago | (#31352070)

freenx was simple as for me ... download packages and double click. 8.04.

Re:NX is a bitch: use XRDP instead (1)

Junta (36770) | more than 4 years ago | (#31354264)

I've been taking to SimpleNX, though no actual packages have been released. I checked out the git repository. Basically, it simplifies starting a rootless NX session without all the mess of an NX user and such.

Re:NX is a bitch: use XRDP instead (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31356374)

Dude, fuck RDP and NX, give me SPICE:

http://www.spice-space.org/

Cost prohibitive? (2, Insightful)

bsDaemon (87307) | more than 4 years ago | (#31349544)

EC2 charges based on CPU time and bandwidth usage, so this sounds like it'd end up eating up a monthly fee of ~$netbook per month. Why would anybody want to spend their money on this?

Re:Cost prohibitive? (1)

Snyper1000 (987002) | more than 4 years ago | (#31349638)

Because it'd be great to go back to dumb terminals, and service/fee based software, etc! </sarcasm>

Re:Cost prohibitive? (4, Insightful)

e2d2 (115622) | more than 4 years ago | (#31349726)

Checking the EC2 pricing scheme:

Small Linux install: $.085 per hour
Up to the First 10TB of data transfer: 0.15 per GB

And it goes down as you add more instances in. So the cost may be relatively small.

But I wonder, if you are remoting to this machine, won't you be charged for twice the bandwidth if you are using it as your desktop to surf the web? Incoming data has to go to that instance first and then route to you. AFAIK you'll be charged for total bandwidth usage.

 

Re:Cost prohibitive? (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 4 years ago | (#31350108)

Your web surfing scenario would incur bandwidth costs on top of those of maintaining the remote session; but not double(exactly).

NX(or any of the other remote desktop setups, RDP, ICA, X, etc) send the view of the screen from the server to the client, and keystrokes and mouse input from the client to the server, with varying degrees of compression and algorithmic cleverness, as well as what resolution and color depth you are running, and how much the screen is changing determining the actual bandwidth cost of maintaining the session.

Outside of highly unlikely, or contrived, scenarios, is not going to be the case that the bandwidth cost of the desktop session is equal to the bandwidth cost of the web surfing. For some activities(using any offline desktop program, loading a small; but CSS gradient heavy, web page and scrolling up and down for an hour), the cost of the desktop session will be way higher than the cost of the web surfing. For other purposes(grabbing the entire source blob from kernel.org, then spending ten minutes studying part of it in some minimalist text editor, doing some torrenting, viewing a graphics heavy website in a desktop session running in 4 bit color), the bandwidth cost of the remote instance's network access will be much higher than the cost of maintaining your connection to that instance.

Re:Cost prohibitive? (1)

evilviper (135110) | more than 4 years ago | (#31350230)

won't you be charged for twice the bandwidth if you are using it as your desktop to surf the web?

Twice?! Haha. No.

Try 10X or so.

HTML and optimized compressed images are far, far smaller than an un-optimized, on-the-fly compressed X11 display. NX does a good job, but no way are you anywhere near just double the bandwidth. And YouTube? Forget it!

And let's remember, not only are you paying Amazon twice, you're also paying that much more for your own broadband connection.

Re:Cost prohibitive? (1)

DragonWriter (970822) | more than 4 years ago | (#31350686)

But I wonder, if you are remoting to this machine, won't you be charged for twice the bandwidth if you are using it as your desktop to surf the web?

Why would you use the remote system for surfing the web? I can see using it to test a web page under Ubuntu if your normal desktop environment isn't Ubuntu, but since you need a local computer to connect to the remote one in the first place, and most computers will be more than capable of surfing the web, why would you do normal surfing on the remote?

(I can see using it that way if you are locally hosting your cloud, so that you are separating logical desktops from physical machines, and that's likely viable since Ubuntu Server includes an EC2-compatible cloud implementation, but if you are actually hosting it remotely with Amazon, that seems like a really odd use of it.)

Re:Cost prohibitive? (1)

e2d2 (115622) | more than 4 years ago | (#31351160)

Yes I would agree with that. I was just trying to point out the costs associated with I/O bandwidth and wondering if anyone has worked out the cost of hosting a working desktop instance in the cloud, regardless of intended use. Requiring an OS to host the remote desktop application kind of moots the advantages of the cloud for personal use. For multi-user use though, this implementation may work quite well.

Re:Cost prohibitive? (1)

AndrewNeo (979708) | more than 4 years ago | (#31349728)

Butbutcloud!

Re:Cost prohibitive? (2, Insightful)

Hatta (162192) | more than 4 years ago | (#31349956)

I'm not sure what the use case for this would be anyway. Sure you can access your desktop from everywhere, but where are you going to go that has terminals set up for NX? If you're hauling around a netbook anyway, why not just run a local desktop?

Re:Cost prohibitive? (1)

dave562 (969951) | more than 4 years ago | (#31350150)

The obvious application that comes to mind for me is situations where data retention / security are an issue. You don't want your IRS agent taking a laptop with information home or on the road. On the other hand, there's no reason not to give the same agent a laptop that they can remotely connect into a secure system with. The same thing goes for HIPAA or any other regulations.

Re:Cost prohibitive? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31350238)

The obvious application that comes to mind for me is situations where data retention / security are an issue. You don't want your IRS agent taking a laptop with information home or on the road. On the other hand, there's no reason not to give the same agent a laptop that they can remotely connect into a secure system with. The same thing goes for HIPAA or any other regulations.

Except that EC2 cloud != secure system.

Re:Cost prohibitive? (2, Interesting)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 4 years ago | (#31350528)

The more interesting use case is probably to be found when you combine the existence of this project with the existence of Eucalyptus [eucalyptus.com] which somebody mentioned above. The fact that it works with EC2 is interesting; but paying Amazon is likely not cost effective(since demand for desktop seats tends not to fluctuate nearly as fast as some server loads do and is, in any case, constrained by the number of NX capable thin clients available) a service where you pay extra for the elasticity isn't obviously sensible.

WIth Eucalyptus, though, you can fairly easily run your own setup, keeping the bandwidth in house and thus cheap and abundant, easily spawning a desktop instance that is available to a given user across multiple machines, thin or fat, in your organization. Because of Linux's unixy legacy, which tends to make multi-user systems a good bit easier and more natural, this isn't as compelling as it is with Windows setups; but there are still purposes for which it could be nice.

Re:Cost prohibitive? (1)

Lord Ender (156273) | more than 4 years ago | (#31351204)

What we have been talking about here is either using it for DR plans, or for letting remote users with cheap thinclients (say nettop+linux+rdp/x/nx/vnc) access managed (by us) virtual desktops which have all their data plus our software, backups, reliability, and security.

Bonus: if the nettop/netbook is stolen, NO data is lost, as it never leaves our servers (in persistent form, at least).

Re:Cost prohibitive? (1)

DragonWriter (970822) | more than 4 years ago | (#31350610)

EC2 charges based on CPU time and bandwidth usage, so this sounds like it'd end up eating up a monthly fee of ~$netbook per month. Why would anybody want to spend their money on this?

Ubuntu Server has, since I think 9.04, but definitely in 9.10, included open source, EC2-compatible cloud hosting software. So, presumably, you could also use this on your own cloud using Ubuntu Server, rather than on Amazon's cloud.

The uses motivating this are enumerated in TFA:

A few of the reasons why desktop in the cloud is interesting:
  - Remote access from anywhere and any OS to an Ubuntu environment
  - We can easily (check LTSP !!) put up to 100 users on the same server/VM
  - Can be used for desktop/usability/feature testing
  - Integration with Ubuntu ONE would make sure your data is always there.

Bah (0, Troll)

mgvrolijk (215830) | more than 4 years ago | (#31349710)

Just mentioning the "cloud" should be legal basis enough for having your testicles yanked out with extreme prejudice.

Hypocrites (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31349840)

Wasn't it not too long ago when /. was hammering Microsoft for even mentioning the word "cloud"?
Oh, it is different now. I get it.

I love that word, but have a suggestion. (4, Funny)

thePowerOfGrayskull (905905) | more than 4 years ago | (#31349874)

It'll be in the Cloud! It'll be grand! "What does that mean?" Oh, it doesn't matter. It's in the Cloud! Duuuuude! The CLOUD, man!

It seems to me that the Cloud is the end result of network engineers being too successful in dumbing down "all that network" stuff into an amorphous cloud in their Visio diagrams, in order to allay the concerns of micromanaging PHBs.

My suggestion is that we start calling it the Clod. Then at least we could get some entertainment value of out if. "Ubuntu Desktop in the Clod" and "Moving all your mission-critical resources to the Clod!", or "How can the Clod help YOUR business to succeed?"

Re:I love that word, but have a suggestion. (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31349920)

Thank you for spending your afternoon coming up with that.

Re:I love that word, but have a suggestion. (3, Funny)

thePowerOfGrayskull (905905) | more than 4 years ago | (#31350036)

Thank you for spending your afternoon coming up with that.

It's important that available resources are maximized to their full potential, in the Clod.

Re:I love that word, but have a suggestion. (1)

lkcl (517947) | more than 4 years ago | (#31350072)

dude, my clod-hoppers totally stomped your windows network routers, duuude.

Re:I love that word, but have a suggestion. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31350136)

In the early 2000s, a guy I knew used a bunny in his flowcharts to represent the internet. It meant about as much as a cloud, but was much cooler about it.

Re:I love that word, but have a suggestion. (1)

thePowerOfGrayskull (905905) | more than 4 years ago | (#31350196)

In the early 2000s, a guy I knew used a bunny in his flowcharts to represent the internet. It meant about as much as a cloud, but was much cooler about it.

If only THAT trend had caught on. "Dude, don't worry about it... it's all in the bunny." Nobody could say it with a straight face, and we'd never have reached these dire straits.

Re:I love that word, but have a suggestion. (1)

Sulphur (1548251) | more than 4 years ago | (#31351202)

That was the Ether Bunny, you insensitive clod.

Re:I love that word, but have a suggestion. (1)

turing_m (1030530) | more than 4 years ago | (#31351432)

In the early 2000s, a guy I knew used a bunny in his flowcharts to represent the internet. It meant about as much as a cloud, but was much cooler about it.

I'm guessing that had something to do with the limitations of the clipart folder?

Re:I love that word, but have a suggestion. (2, Funny)

TeknoHog (164938) | more than 4 years ago | (#31350470)

I'm a clod, you insensitive clod!

Re:I love that word, but have a suggestion. (1)

Lord Ender (156273) | more than 4 years ago | (#31351302)

Cloud computing is simply the name given to the virtualization and SaaS trends. It is a real phenomenon, so why not let it have a one-syllable name? I mean, we could call it "Utility-IT" or "virtual outsourced hosting services" or any of several terms which are slightly more descriptive, but such names certainly aren't any better.

In my opinion, "cloud computing" is a pretty decent name for scalable, on-demand, utility-billed IT services. At least it's not another acronym!

Re:I love that word, but have a suggestion. (1)

thePowerOfGrayskull (905905) | more than 4 years ago | (#31354792)

It does have valid meaning, but it also is getting used well beyond that meaning. That's the point it which it became irritating....

Re:I love that word, but have a suggestion. (1)

dkf (304284) | more than 4 years ago | (#31356304)

It does have valid meaning, but it also is getting used well beyond that meaning. That's the point it which it became irritating....

It's just the hype cycle [wikipedia.org] . Nothing to get too excited about. See what's actually going on for what it is and use it where it makes real sense. (Virtualized hosting of hardware and services is useful for a lot of problems, though naturally not all.)

Re:I love that word, but have a suggestion. (1)

DragonWriter (970822) | more than 4 years ago | (#31365450)

Cloud computing is simply the name given to the virtualization and SaaS trends. It is a real phenomenon, so why not let it have a one-syllable name? I mean, we could call it "Utility-IT" or "virtual outsourced hosting services" or any of several terms which are slightly more descriptive, but such names certainly aren't any better.

In my opinion, "cloud computing" is a pretty decent name for scalable, on-demand, utility-billed IT services. At least it's not another acronym!

Well, the big problem is that "Cloud Computing" isn't used consistently. The useful use, IMO, relates to using virtualization to decouple logical machine from physical machines and enable dynamic provisioning. SaaS and utility-billed services are applications which predate that, though they are popular applications.

Using "Cloud Computing" to refer unspecifically to some vague amalgamation of some or all of elastic provisioning, SaaS, remote hosting, usage-based billing, etc., etc. renders the term meaningless.

Good job, /. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31349982)

Ubuntu finally has an icon, and it wasn't just a one-time usage... thanks for doing the sensible thing for once.

Useful model for ISPs (1)

YouCanCallMeAl (773817) | more than 4 years ago | (#31350074)

I could see something similar to this working well when a subscriber's ISP hosts the actual OS instances. There are a lot of benefits to having professional administrators in charge of systems, something extremely rare for home users. Given adequate throughput and low latency to the data center, less computer savvy people could connect to these managed instances, which are provided by their ISP. They wouldn't have to know about or care about updates, virus scanning, or even backups for their data. ISPs would (potentially) have much lower rates of help desk calls.

i never saw the point of cloud desktops (2, Interesting)

alen (225700) | more than 4 years ago | (#31350268)

hardware is dirt cheap and getting cheaper. you can buy a powerful server for cheap as well. but after you buy the Citrix or whatever licenses, a few more servers for redundancy, a ton of storage at enterprise prices, the enterprise hardware support, increase network bandwidth etc the savings vanish and it's cheaper to just buy regular desktop machines.

same thing with EC2. by the time you put in the network hardware and new circuits and pay Amazon for 24x7 instances it's cheaper to just buy desktops. i'm typing this on a 5 year old HP that runs windows 7 just fine.

i bet all this cloud nonsense is enterprise hardware companies trying to push higher margin products and no real trend that anyone is doing. the numbers just don't work out

Re:i never saw the point of cloud desktops (1)

lkcl (517947) | more than 4 years ago | (#31350432)

i bet all this cloud nonsense is enterprise hardware companies trying to push higher margin products and no real trend that anyone is doing. the numbers just don't work out

they will, once ARM cortex N goes multi-core (and, importantly from merely a psychological perspective, goes 64-bit).

providing "real" ARM 1ghz dual-core CPUs in a "cloud" where you can fit 2 to an SO-DIMM back-to-back with the actual memory, 1gb each, 20 of which will fit into a 1U rack-mount and still only consume 40 watts of power each, where you can fit 16 1U into a rack, and thus get 1280ghz of CPU power in a single rack - and that's a _low_ estimate.

the performance per watt and the performance per cubic metre figures are just through the _roof_ compared to x86 processors, and the only thing that's really stopping this from happening right now is because people don't believe that an ARM processor could ever be "good enough".

well, with the redesign of the Cortex ARMs, and the geometry dropping like mad, that's set to change.

Re:i never saw the point of cloud desktops (1)

TeknoHog (164938) | more than 4 years ago | (#31350658)

providing "real" ARM 1ghz dual-core CPUs in a "cloud" where you can fit 2 to an SO-DIMM back-to-back with the actual memory, 1gb each, 20 of which will fit into a 1U rack-mount and still only consume 40 watts of power each, where you can fit 16 1U into a rack, and thus get 1280ghz of CPU power in a single rack - and that's a _low_ estimate.

the performance per watt and the performance per cubic metre figures are just through the _roof_ compared to x86 processors, and the only thing that's really stopping this from happening right now is because people don't believe that an ARM processor could ever be "good enough".

Sounds a little like this SiCortex box I found on Ebay the other day, too bad they only ship within the US:

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=150418027555 [ebay.com]

The silly thing is that people don't generally run Windows on a supercomputing cluster, but they still use lots of closed applications, which is why x86-64 rules. So if the scientific computing crowd can't let go of the x86 legacy, how do you think the masses are going to do it?

Re:i never saw the point of cloud desktops (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31352494)

They claim 1GFLOPS per core. 72 cores, so 72GFLOPS. A Geforce GTX 280 achieves up to 90GFLOPS (double precision). Unless you need the RAM (48GB in the SiCortex box), you're probably going to find the GTX a better buy.

Re:i never saw the point of cloud desktops (4, Insightful)

ppanon (16583) | more than 4 years ago | (#31350558)

Nope. What it is is the natural end-point after 10 years of outsourcing. When you get rid of the growth path for technical resources, eventually you get a profound lack of availability of senior technical resources. At that point you have no choice but to push everything IT-related out to external vendors because you can't hire internal resources to do it (or even just to manage the process) and must rely on external vendors who can maximize use of those types of resources across multiple clients. However you also no longer have the skills available to know if the vendor is taking you to the cleaners, or cutting corners on management/security to raise profits and significantly putting your data at risk. I wouldn't be surprised if there's a Madoff-level disaster with a "cloud" provider sometime in the next 10 years.

Re:i never saw the point of cloud desktops (1)

lennier (44736) | more than 4 years ago | (#31353546)

When you get rid of the growth path for technical resources, eventually you get a profound lack of availability of senior technical resources. At that point you have no choice but to push everything IT-related out to external vendors because you can't hire internal resources t

"Resources"?

You keep using that word as if it were something like canned meat.

Wouldn't you rather call them "people"?

Re:i never saw the point of cloud desktops (1)

FreakyGreenLeaky (1536953) | more than 4 years ago | (#31356644)

No, not canned meat.

When you get rid of the growth path for technical sacks of slightly dirty salty water, eventually you get a profound lack of availability of senior technical sacks of slightly dirty salty water. At that point you have no choice but to push everything IT-related out to external vendors because you can't hire internal sacks of slightly dirty salty water

Re:i never saw the point of cloud desktops (1)

ppanon (16583) | more than 4 years ago | (#31394662)

You keep using that word as if it were something like canned meat.

Cubicles? Hello? I don't think people are just resources or canned meat, but far too many people out there in management land do. Sometimes they're even right, but usually because "canned meat" was a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Re:i never saw the point of cloud desktops (1)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 4 years ago | (#31350734)

But there is more to it than that. PCs are a Pain. Really one or two are not bad but when you get to 100 or more then trying to keep them all working and configured is just not fun.
First you don't have to use EC2 Ubuntu offers a cloud solution that you can install on your own machines. http://www.ubuntu.com/cloud/private [ubuntu.com] .
One use for using a cloud based system would be security. Suppose you want to allow your people access to the internet but you don't want to worry about all the latest exploits.
Block the internet on their machines but give them the option to run a browser on your cloudserver.
They get to use the internet but on a Linux box isolated from their production machine.
Or if you can migrate to Linux completely "Not an easy task" you could have people running simple nettops with flash drives and use a cloud server to run the actual desktops. You can do much the same with Citrix.
In the end it comes down to ease of management. If you have a bunch of folks that only need too run 3 or four programs all day long there is no reason to support hundreds of full PCs and all the crap that means.

Re:i never saw the point of cloud desktops (1)

tpstigers (1075021) | more than 4 years ago | (#31353434)

Also, this way you don't have to move your Guild Navigator out of his primary Melange tank in order to provide tech support. Maintaining portable Melange tanks is expensive and annoying.

Ubuntu also has software to create a private cloud (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31350430)

Better client support follows from having better servers support. Ubuntu has introduced the ability to provide a private EC2 compatible cloud.
I probably wouldn't pay to put the desktops in the cloud, but if I could reduce the complexity of the desktops in my organization by building a local cloud, it certainly doesn't hurt. This competes with the Citrix and VMware desktop integration business. More solutions improve our choices.

not for you (1)

digitalsushi (137809) | more than 4 years ago | (#31350644)

The same people wondering why they need this might be the same that complain about a 10 gig nic being useless.

Re:not for you (1)

emt377 (610337) | more than 4 years ago | (#31352554)

Which in turn is the same people who in 5-10 years will complain that they can't get a job because they're "too old".

Build your own for pennies per VM these days (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31350668)

These days you can source hardware and software building blocks for a very large scale hosted virtual desktop infrastructure (I cant bring myself to say cloud) for pennies per VM. Software like XenServer from Citrix is supported and free, and hyper-dense hardware appliances like the VMCO boxes [virtualmachineco.com] allow 50 or 100 VMs per physical.

Now can somebody tell me where I can get cheap, plentiful power and network bandwidth?

AG

Cheap bandwidth? (1)

symbolset (646467) | more than 4 years ago | (#31354728)

Did you try Google, Kansas [cjonline.com] ?

Check for New Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...