Brandon Butler (2829853) writes "The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) applauded content delivery network provider CloudFlare for the company’s recent announcement that it will offer encrypted HTTPs as its default setting for any website it hosts. CloudFlare says that with the addition of its 2 million sites covered by HTTPs that the number of sites online using the SSL encryption has doubled to 4 million. The company had previously offered the features as part of a paid plan. The EFF is calling on other CDN providers to offer HTTPs/SSL encryption as a free, default service instead of a paid add-on." Link to Original Source top
Brandon Butler (2829853) writes "Amazon Web Services will be updating a substantial number of its cloud servers in the coming days and customers are recommended to re-launch their instances. Amazon is not saying why the reboot is happening over the next five days starting tonight, but there is speculation that it's related to a security flaw in the Xen hypervisor." Link to Original Source top
Brandon Butler (2829853) writes "Containers are not new, but if you listen to the big tech giants you may think they were. VMware, Microsoft, Cisco and Red Hat have all made news about containers recently, mostly around supporting Docker, the open source container engine. Perhaps the most surprising company to embrace containers is VMware, which says that it can provide a unified platform for managing containers and virtual machines. It’s an interesting move from the virtualization company to embrace a technology that could cannibalize its VM business." Link to Original Source top
Google Kevlar-wraps its trans-Pacific fiber cables to protect from shark attacks
Brandon Butler (2829853) writes "As an ode to Shark Week: Sharks have been known to show an appetite for fiber cables underwater, and last week a Google official said to prevent sharks from wreaking havoc on the company's trans-Pacific fiber lines, it wraps them in Kevlar. It's believed that the emission of electrical currents from the fiber piping is mistaken by sharks occasionally as prey." Link to Original Source top
Brandon Butler (2829853) writes "In the annual battle of the buzzwords, the Internet of Things has won. Each year the research firm Gartner puts out a Hype Cycle of emerging technologies, a sort of report card for various trends and buzzwords. This year, IoT tops the list. On another note, somewhat surprising is that Gartner says the "cloud computing" is not just hype anymore, but becoming a mainstream technology." Link to Original Source top
OpenStack: The open source cloud that vendors love and users are ignoring
Brandon Butler (2829853) writes "OpenStack has no shortage of corporate backers. Rackspace, Red Hat, IBM, Dell, HP, Cisco and many others have hopped on board. But many wonder, after four years, shouldn't there be more end users by this point?" Link to Original Source top
Anonymous's latest target: Boston Children's Hospital
Brandon Butler (2829853) writes "Supporters of the faceless collective known as Anonymous have taken up the cause of a young girl, after the State of Massachusetts removed her from her parents earlier this year. However, the methods used to show support may have unintended consequences, which could impact patient care.
On Thursday, the Boston Children's Hospital confirmed that they were subjected to multiple DDoS attacks over the Easter holiday. Said attacks, which have continued throughout the week, aim to take the hospital's website offline. Similar attacks, including website defacement, have also targeted the Wayside Youth and Family Support Network. Both organizations are at the heart of a sensitive topic, child welfare and the rights of a parent." Link to Original Source top
Brandon Butler (2829853) writes "Red Hat is hosting its annual summit this week where the company is seemingly basking in the glory of making more than a billion dollars off a free open source project. But as successful as Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) has been for Red Hat — the company announced a new beta version of RHEL 7 this week — there’s a question of how long the RHEL gravy train will keep growing, and what’s next for the company after that." Link to Original Source top
Brandon Butler (2829853) writes "It’s the holiday for every mathematician small and large: Pi Day! If you’re not familiar, math enthusiasts around the world embrace March 14 to commemorate the mathematical constant. No matter the size of the circle, the ratio of its circumference to its diameter will always be 3.14. What better way to celebrate this than on 3/14? Here are 10 ways you and your math friends can celebrate the day." Link to Original Source top
Microsoft Hyper-V bangs away at VMware's hypervisor dominance
Brandon Butler (2829853) writes "More and more software packages that manage virtualized data centers are supporting Hyper-V, reflecting the steady progress Microsoft's hyper-visor is making against VMware's dominance in the market. Just how much interest is there in Hyper-V? At the recent VMworld show, a survey of respondents found that 20% were already implementing Hyper-V. 20% of randomly sampled attendees at a (emphasis) VMWARE trade show were already using Microsoft's hypervisor. Third party vendors are starting to pick up on the trend." Link to Original Source top
Now, more than ever, Twitter knows exactly where you are
Brandon Butler (2829853) writes "Twitter has inked a deal to improve its geotracking feature by using a Location Intelligence platform from IT consulting firm Pitney Bowes. Twitter users have the option of turning the geotracking on or off, and can chose whether their location is displayed in their status updates. Users can also delete their entire history of location tracking, PB says." Link to Original Source top
Brandon Butler (2829853) writes "In theory, cloud computing offers a fairly straightforward model for consuming compute and storage resources. Customers request capacity, it is provided by a vendor and it is paid for. Customers should be able to spin up and down resources as they need to and only pay for what they use.
Unfortunately, cloud pricing models are complicated, which makes purchasing decisions for consumers difficult and comparing across providers a challenge as well, a new report from the 451 Research Group shows. There is a large differentiation among providers when it comes to pricing, which it says is because the market is still “finding its feet” so there are not standards for anything across providers, and especially with pricing. “Obviously this isn’t great for consumers, who have to understand each method and weigh every option when selecting a provider. Furthermore, comparing the total price of an application between providers – and working out the value of a number of offerings – is a difficult task.”
To provide a clue into the complexity of cloud pricing, here are just some of the ways 451 found that cloud providers priced their services:
-On-demand pricing: Customers are billed for consumption of virtual machines using a fixed unit price -Reserved instances: Customers are billed a flat fee in advance for a service and receive a discounted rate for consumption -Spot pricing: The price of a resource varies with time, and customers must bid to gain access to these resources -Prepaid VM access: Customers pay a single fixed fee to access a specifically sized instance at the beginning of a term; customers have unlimited access to the VM over the term. Can be done in a recurring plan as well, which is renewed usually monthly. -Recurring resource pooling: Customers commit to purchase a quantity of resources (number of CPU cores, quantity of RAM, etc.) in advance on a recurring basis -Prepaid Consumption: Customers pay a set amount at the beginning of a term, and costs of consumption are debited from this prepaid amount. Can be done in a recurring plan as well." Link to Original Source top
Google Compute Engine (now GA) vs. AWS cloud: Game on
Brandon Butler (2829853) writes "Some believe the IaaS cloud computing market entered a new stage this week with the general availability release of Google Compute Engine. Amazon Web Services has dominated this market given its multi-year head start, leading to significant feature parity compared to any other IaaS cloud provider. No other company has the breadth and depth of databases, storage options and virtual machine instance sizes to match AWS. But the GA of GCE, which came with new support for RHEL and SUSELinux, plus live VM migration and a price drop, means that Google is here to stay in the IaaS market. The question is, can it give AWS a run for its money?" Link to Original Source top
This is how Amazon cleans its cloud servers when customers are done with them
Brandon Butler (2829853) writes "At AWS great lengths are taken to ensure its servers are clean, the company's chief information security officer Steve Schmidt says. In addition to the VMs being cleared when the customer finishes paying for them, the company also wipes them clean before giving them to another customer. "Test it yourself," Schmidt challenged users, inviting customers to check to see if a VM has any data on it when it's given to them. Even more extreme measures are taken when the hardware has reached its end of life.
For spinning disks, AWS uses a large magnet to degauss the hardware — meaning that the magnetic properties the disk uses as the basis for storage are rendered useless. Then, AWS chomps them up into minuscule chips. For solid state disks, the company can't use the degaussing method because it's not a magnetic-based storage process. So, instead the company shreds them until they are basically turned into dust-sized particles." Link to Original Source top
Brandon Butler (2829853) writes "A few weeks after Nirvanix bit the dust, the cloud industry could have another casualty. Cloud storage provider Megacloud (not to be confused with Kim Dotcom's Mega Upload) appears to have gone dark. Its website doesn't work and its social media accounts are silent. Users have been complaining that they can't access their data for more than 48 hours now. Is it a technical glitch or has this business, which at one time offered users 16 GB of free cloud storage, gone belly up?" Link to Original Source top
Perhaps that's the thinking behind the move by Russian search giant Yandex — who some call the Google or Russia. The company today launched a new cloud-based application development product and named it, yes Cocaine.
It gets even better: It's free. As an open source project, it's available for download at no charge. Be careful kids, the first one's always free." Link to Original Source top
Will cloud services be traded just like stocks and bonds one day?
Brandon Butler (2829853) writes "Today, cloud computing resources are bought and sold in a fairly straightforward process: A company needs extra compute capacity, for example, so they contract with a provider who spins up virtual machines for a certain amount of time.
But what will that process look like in, say, 2020? If efforts by a handful of companies come to fruition, there could be a lot more wheeling and dealing that goes on behind the scenes. An idea is being floated to package cloud computing resources into blocks that can be bought and sold on a commodity futures trading market. It would be similar to how financial instruments like stocks, bonds and agricultural products like corn and wheat are traded on exchanges by investors.
Blocks of cloud computing resources — for example a month’s worth of virtual machines, or a year’s worth of cloud storage — would be packaged by service providers and sold on a market. In the exchange, investors and traders could buy up these blocks and resell them to end users, or other investors, potentially turning a profit if the value of the resource increases." Link to Original Source top
The team that created KVM is now building a new open source OS for the cloud
Brandon Butler (2829853) writes "The team that built the KVM hypervisor (which Red Hat bought for $108 million) is at it again, this time creating a new open source operating system that sits atop the hypervisor layer and is made specifically to handle cloud workloads.
While the OS is not based off the Linux kernel, OSv from Cloudius Systems takes some of the most beneficial aspects of various Linux distributions for distributed data centers. It is stateless so there is no OS management; OSv allows developers to deploy applications from the development environment to the cloud, eliminating the need for template management, configuration and tuning. It cuts out unnecessary configurations, daemons and options normally found in an OS, saving CPU and memory and reducing latency, the company says. That makes it ideal for large-scale cloud deployments where hundreds of virtual machines are running copies of the same application. Linux has evolved to support virtualization and now cloud workloads, but it’s not optimized for these use cases. “The operating system has been virtually unchanged since the introduction of cloud computing,” the company says. They’re trying to change that." Link to Original Source top
Rackspace is essentially trying to out-VMware VMware.
Brandon Butler (2829853) writes "Rackspace today rolled out new functionality that allows customers to run their VMware virtual machines in its cloud on dedicated infrastructure. The move is interesting because it comes just ahead of VMware’s expected launch of its own hosted service.
Rackspace is essentially trying to out-VMware VMware.
Engates says the offering is meant to resonate not just with Rackspace customers looking for a hosted platform for their VMware-VMs, but for VMware customers as well. But why would a VMware customer use Rackspace as a hosting provider instead of VMware itself?
Rackspace has advantages over VMware’s soon-to-be-released offering, Engates says. Rackspace has been doing this whole outsourcing thing for more than a decade. Plus, the company has been hosting VMware virtual machines for years too. The newest offering is a natural extension of the company’s current platform for VMware products, he says, giving customers a no-frills-added VMware vCenter virtualized server running on dedicated infrastructure.
The bigger issue here is that VMware is likely going to be grabbing a lot of headlines in the coming weeks with its VMworld show happening next week. So, providers like Rackspace and Microsoft are in a sense trying to preempt the show with news of their own. Microsoft basically did the same thing last week with its virtual networking capabilities being rolled out. Everyone wants their time in the spotlight." Link to Original Source top
Big data is reaching the peak of its hype, Gartner says
Brandon Butler (2829853) writes "Each year research firm Gartner gives buzzwords a reality check by publishing its Hype Cycle report. The latest one focusing on big data shows that the industry is just reaching the peak of its hype right now, with vendors flocking to the market, customers getting anxious that they don’t yet fully understand the technology yet, and the expectations about what big data can do for an organization being over-inflated." Link to Original Source