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Mainframes and Containers

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Server
  • Why Mainframes Aren't Going Away Any Time Soon

    IBM's former systems and technology CTO explains when it makes sense to buy a mainframe and what the advantages are.

  • Starling Bank cashes in on open source Kubernetes for flexibility and agility

    UK fintech Starling Bank is building on the evolution of its architecture with plans to move to a cross-cloud approach supported by open source container orchestration platform Kubernetes.

  • Kubernetes for dev infrastructure

    I was initially assigned to solve an easy-sounding problem: make integration tests faster. There were a few hundreds of Selenium-based workflows, which were running sequentially and taking up to 10 hours to complete. The obvious solution was to parallelize them. The problem was that they were not designed to run concurrently and hence we had to either refactor all tests or provide an isolated copy of the ThoughtSpot system (a test backend) for every thread to run on. Redesigning tests might look like a cleaner solution, but it would require a tremendous effort from the whole engineering team and a lot of test-related changes in the product, so it was not feasible. We’ve decided to take the second approach, and that left me with the task, I’ve ended up solving with the help of Docker and Kubernetes: make it possible to quickly (in 2–3 minutes) spin up dozens of test backends with pre-loaded test data, run tests, tear them down, repeat.

  • Kubernetes vs Docker Swarm: A comparison of cloud container tools

    Containers are rising like a hot air balloon in the cloud market. These days, the CIO can hardly move for suggestions of one-shot-wonder tools to lighten the burden of IT infrastructure management. But when it comes to the battle of Kubernetes vs Docker, which programme comes out on top?

    Touted as silver bullet simplifiers of software update administration, both tools are great for transporting applications from one system to another without risking compatibility problems, missing files or unexpected errors. In the first instance, using a container to transport applications is much faster and better value than using a virtual machine, so either product is a good place to start for boosting cloud architecture efficiency.

Nextcloud 13 Brings Improved UI, Video and Text Chat, End-to-end Encryption, Improved performance and more

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Server
OSS

Nextcloud 13 is out after 9 months of development and testing. This release brings improvements to the core File Sync and Share like easier moving of files and a tech preview of our end-to-end encryption for the ultimate protection of your data. It also introduces collaboration and communication capabilities, like auto-complete of comments and integrated real-time chat and video communication. Last but not least, Nextcloud was optimized and tuned to deliver up to 80% faster LDAP, much faster object storage and Windows Network Drive performance and a smoother user interface. Read on to find out what else is new and don’t miss our thanks and invitation on the bottom!

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Servers: More on Kubernetes and Cisco Container Platform

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Server
  • Portworx Release Its Open Source Kubernetes Scheduler Extender, STORK

    Today Portworx released its new STorage Orchestrator Runtime for Kubernetes or STORK. According to the company, this new open-source project that takes advantage of the extensibility of Kubernetes to allow DevOps teams to run stateful applications like databases, queues and key-value stores more efficiently on Kubernetes. STORK provides key hyperconvergence, failure-domain awareness, storage health monitoring, and snapshot features for Kubernetes while being delivering through a plugin interface enabling it tow work with any storage driver for Kubernetes.

  • Kernel 4.16-rc1, Qubes OS 4.0, OpenSUSE's Tumbleweed and More

    Cisco announced its new Cisco Container Platform yesterday, which "simplifies and accelerates how application development and information technology (IT) operations teams configure, deploy, and manage container clusters based on 100 percent upstream Kubernetes."

  • Cisco Debuts Its Own Kubernetes Container Platform

    Cisco is getting deeper into the container world with the announcement on Jan. 31 that the company is building its own Cisco Container platform. The new platform is based on the open-source upstream Kubernetes container orchestration platform.

    The Cisco Container Platform will initially be available in April for Cisco's Hyperflex server system architecture, with a plan to add support for bare metal set to follow. The Cisco Container Platform adds Cisco's own control plane services on top of Kubernetes to enable what the company aims to be a turnkey deployment model.


    Sanjeev Rampal, Principal Engineer at Cisco, explained to ServerWatch that the plan is to have the Cisco Container Platform follow the upstream Kubernetes releases in an "N-1" cadence. The current most recent release of Kubernetes is version 1.9, with a 1.10 update expected to debut by March.

Server: STORK, Cisco Container Platform, and CoreOS

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Server
OSS
  • Portworx open-sources STORK software to fix issues with data services on Kubernetes

    Software container company Portworx Inc. is unveiling a new open-source project aimed at developers, enabling them to run stateful applications such as databases, queues and key value stores more efficiently on Kubernetes.

    The STorage Orchestrator Runtime for Kubernetes, or STORK, works by communicating with storage drivers via a plugin interface so it can help address a number of issues that plague data services when running container software at scale.

  • Cisco jumps into containers

    How do you know when a technology has really made it? When companies that are not known for being innovators adopt it. That's the case today, as Cisco announced its Cisco Container Platform (CCP), a Kubernetes-based container platform. Another day, another company betting on Kubernetes for the cloud win.

    The CCP is designed to enable companies to build multi-cloud architectures with consistent application deployment and management on Cisco HyperFlex, virtual machines (VMs), and bare metal, both on premises and in the cloud. It will be available first on HyperFlex in April 2018. CCP will show up on other platforms this summer.

  • Red Hat buys the creator of a Chrome-based OS for servers

    The underpinnings of Chrome OS have found their way into the server room in a very roundabout way. Red Hat has acquired CoreOS, the creators of an operating system for containerized apps (Container Linux) that shares roots with both Google's Chromium OS project and Gentoo Linux. The $250 million deal promises to help Red Hat fulfill its dreams of helping people use open code to deploy apps in any environment they like, whether it's on a local network or multiple cloud services.

  • Red Hat Acquires CoreOS to Bolster Its Containerisation Efforts

    Expanding its presence in the world of containerisation, Red Hat has announced the acquisition of CoreOS, the container management startup that has been renowned for its CoreOS Tectonic, for $250 million (roughly Rs. 1,600 crores). The new deal is not only likely to help the North Carolina-headquartered company that is dominating the open source market but would also eventually give a boost to the existing enterprise-grade containerised infrastructure. CoreOS is also popular for developing Container Linux, which is a dedicated platform for containerised apps. The operating system shares foundations with Google's Chromium OS and Chrome OS in addition to leveraging modular Linux distribution Gentoo Linux. Having said that, the core interest of the acquired company lies within Kubernetes that is a modern distributed system designed by Google.

  • Linux Pioneer Red Hat Buys CoreOS for $250 Million

    Red Hat is an acknowledged player in open-source technologies, best known for its contribution to the success of Linux. The company has just disclosed a deal to buy CoreOS Inc. for $250 million – the container applications provider could be a great fit for the Red Hat ecosystem.

    Their products include a Linux distribution, also called CoreOS and Tectonic – a container management system based on Kubernetes, originally a Google platform.

    Red Hat already possesses a sizable container offerings portfolio, like Red Hat OpenShift, along with Kubernetes capabilities. CoreOS’s complementary solutions would accelerate development and encourage businesses to move to hybrid cloud structures – now a quick, easy transition.

dNOS at the Linux Foundation

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Linux
Server
OSS
  • AT&T dNOS Project Taps Linux Foundation for Disaggregated Operating System

    AT&T is introducing the disaggregated Network Operating System – dNOS – in an effort to stimulate the creation of flexible, open and less expensive equipment that fits easily into virtualized networks.

    The open source project will be hosted by The Linux Foundation. The idea is to create a software framework enabling a broad and diverse equipment ecosystem – software developers, network operators, cloud providers, hardware makers, networking application developers and others – to use generic white box infrastructure to provide cost and efficiency advantages.

  • AT&T to offer alternative to integrated networking equipment with open source dNOS project

    AT&T says it plans to open source the Disaggregated Network Operating System, or dNOS project, to offer the industry an open, flexible alternative to traditional integrated networking equipment. Hosted by the Linux Foundation, the dNOS project will deliver a software framework to progress white box adoption and use in a service provider's infrastructure. Software developers, cloud providers, network operators, hardware makers, and networking application developers will have the ability to develop new white box infrastructure to affordably meet customer's changing demands, says AT&T.

Rook, an open-source project adding storage to Kubernetes, joins the Cloud Native Computing Foundation

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Server
OSS

The Cloud Native Computing Foundation has agreed on the 15th project to grace its roster: Rook, a storage-oriented plugin for Kubernetes.

Developed by Seattle’s Bassam Tabbara while he was CTO of Quantum Systems, Rook is an open-source project that allows Kubernetes users to enjoy the benefits of having storage more closely connected to their clusters. It’s the latest move by the CNCF community to make Kubernetes — the popular open-source project used to manage large deployments of applications built around containers — easier to use for a wider base of technology organizations.

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today's leftovers

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Server
SUSE
  • Mirantis CEO Adrian Ionel Comes Back, Champions Open Source for Multi-Cloud

    Mirantis brought back its original CEO and Co-founder Adrian Ionel (pictured), to move the company beyond private cloud and help its customers adopt multi-cloud strategies. Alex Freeland, who is also a co-founder, will step down as CEO but remain a board member.

    Ionel served as CEO from the company’s launch in 2011 until 2015, when he left to start up Dorsal, an open source software support firm. During his initial tenure at Mirantis he led the company’s investment in OpenStack, growing its customer base to more than 200 enterprises.

  • Highlights of YaST Development Sprint 49

    Time goes by and the YaST wheel keeps rolling. So let’s take a look to what have moved since our previous development report.

  • Storage-NG Now Active In openSUSE Tumbleweed

    SUSE's libstorage-ng back-end for YaST's new low-level storage library is now active within the rolling-release openSUSE Tumbleweed distribution.

    Libstorage has traditionally been responsible for SUSE/openSUSE's disk/partition/LVM management and other storage device management. After more than two years of work, libstorage-ng has replaced libstorage within Tumbleweed.

Get ready to use Linux containers

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Server

One of the most exciting things to happen in the Linux world in the past few years is the emergence of containers — self-contained Linux environments that live inside another OS and provide a way to package and isolate applications.

They're not quite virtual systems, since they rely on the host OS to operate, nor are they simply applications. Dan Walsh from Red Hat has said that on Linux, "everything is a container," reminding me of the days when people claimed that everything on Unix was a file. But the vision has less to do with the guts of the OS and more to do with explaining how containers work and how they are different than virtual systems in some very interesting and important ways.

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Exploring Linux containers

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GNU
Linux
Red Hat
Server

They're not quite virtual systems, since they rely on the host OS to operate, nor are they simply applications. Dan Walsh from Red Hat has said that on Linux, "everything is a container," reminding me of the days when people claimed that everything on Unix was a file. But the vision has less to do with the guts of the OS and more to do with explaining how containers work and how they are different than virtual systems in some very interesting and important ways.

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Servers: Containers, MapR, 'Serverless', Bonitasoft

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Server
  • Containers versus Operating Systems

    The most popular docker base container image is either busybox, or scratch. This is driven by a movement that is equal parts puritanical and pragmatic. The puritan asks “Why do I need to run init(1) just to run my process?” The pragmatist asks “Why do I need a 700 meg base image to deploy my application?” And both, seeking immutable deployment units ask “Is it a good idea that I can ssh into my container?” But let’s step back for a second and look at the history of how we got to the point where questions like this are even a thing.

    In the very beginnings, there were no operating systems. Programs ran one at a time with the whole machine at their disposal. While efficient, this created a problem for the keepers of these large and expensive machines. To maximise their investment, the time between one program finishing and another starting must be kept to an absolute minimum; hence monitor programs and batch processing was born.

  • MapR: How Next-Gen Applications Will Change the Way We Look at Data

    MapR is a Silicon Valley-based big data company. Its founders realized that data was going to become ever increasingly important, and existing technologies, including open source Apache Hadoop, fell short of being able to support things like real-time transactional operational applications. So they spent years building out core technologies that resulted in the MapR products, including the flagship Converged Data Platform, platform-agnostic software that’s designed for the multicloud environment. It can even run on embedded Edge devices.

  • 7 Open-Source Serverless Frameworks Providing Functions as a Service

    With virtualization, organizations began to realize greater utilization of physical hardware. That trend continued with the cloud, as organizations began to get their machines into a pay-as-you-go service. Cloud computing further evolved when Amazon Web Services (AWS) launched its Lambda service in 2014, introducing a new paradigm in cloud computing that has become commonly referred to as serverless computing. In the serverless model, organizations pay for functions as a service without the need to pay for an always-on stateful, virtual machine.

  • Bonitasoft Offers Open Source, Low-Code Platform on AWS Cloud

    Bonitasoft, a specialist in open source business process management and digital transformation software, is partnering with the Amazon Web Services Inc. (AWS) cloud to broaden the reach of its low-code development platform.

    That platform, just released in a new version called Bonita 7.6, comes in an open source version and a subscription version with professional support and advanced features.

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More in Tux Machines

today's leftovers

  • CRI: The Second Boom of Container Runtimes
    Harry (Lei) Zhang, together with the CTO of HyperHQ, Xu Wang, will present “CRI: The Second Boom of Container Runtimes” at KubeCon + CloudNativeCon EU 2018, May 2-4 in Copenhagen, Denmark. The presentation will clarify about more about CRI, container runtimes, KataContainers and where they are going. Please join them if you are interested in learning more.
  • Meet Gloo, the ‘Function Gateway’ That Unifies Legacy APIs, Microservices, and Serverless
    Gloo, a single binary file written in Go, can be deployed as a Kubernetes pod, in a Docker container, and now also on Cloud Foundry. The setup also requires a copy of Envoy, though the installation process can be greatly simplified through additional software developed by the company, TheTool. The user then writes configuration objects to capture the workflow logic.
  • Why is the kernel community replacing iptables with BPF?

    The Linux kernel community recently announced bpfilter, which will replace the long-standing in-kernel implementation of iptables with high-performance network filtering powered by Linux BPF, all while guaranteeing a non-disruptive transition for Linux users.

  • The developer of Helium Rain gave an update on their sales, low overall sales but a high Linux percentage
    Helium Rain [Steam, Official Site], the gorgeous space sim from Deimos Games is really quite good so it's a shame they've seen such low overall sales. In total, they've had around 14,000€ (~$17,000) in sales which is not a lot for a game at all. The good news, is that out of the two thousand copies they say they've sold, a huge 14% of them have come from Linux. It's worth noting, that number has actually gone up since we last spoke to them, where they gave us a figure of 11% sales on Linux.
  • Want to try Wild Terra Online? We have another load of keys to give away (update: all gone)
    Wild Terra Online [Steam], the MMO from Juvty Worlds has a small but dedicated following, now is your chance to see if it's for you.
  • Arch Linux Finally Rolling Out Glibc 2.27
    Arch Linux is finally transitioning to glibc 2.27, which may make for a faster system. Glibc 2.27 was released at the start of February. This updated GNU C Library shipped with many performance optimizations particularly for Intel/x86_64 but also some ARM tuning and more. Glibc 2.27 also has memory protection keys support and other feature additions, but the performance potential has been most interesting to us.
  • Installed nvidia driver
  • Stephen Smoogen: Fedora Infrastructure Hackathon (day 1-5)
  • Design and Web team summary – 20 April 2018
    The team manages all web projects across Canonical. From www.ubuntu.com to the Juju GUI we help to bring beauty and consistency to all the web projects.
  • Costales: UbuCon Europe 2018 | 1 Week to go!!
    We'll have an awesome weekend of conferences (with 4 parallel talks), podcasts, stands, social events... Most of them are in English, but there will be in Spanish & Asturian too.
  • Tough, modular embedded PCs start at $875
    Advantech has launched two rugged, Linux-ready embedded DIN-rail computers with Intel Bay Trail SoCs and iDoor expansion: an “UNO-1372G-E” with 3x GbE ports and a smaller UNO-1372G-J with only 2x GbE, but with more serial and USB ports.

OSS Leftovers

  • IRS Website Crash Reminder of HealthCare.gov Debacle as OMB Pushes Open Source
    OMB is increasingly pushing agencies to adopt open source solutions, and in 2016 launched a pilot project requiring at least 20 percent of custom developed code to be released as open source – partly to strengthen and help maintain it by tapping a community of developers. OMB memo M-16-21 further asks agencies to make any code they develop available throughout the federal government in order to encourage its reuse. “Open source solutions give agencies access to a broad community of developers and the latest advancements in technology, which can help alleviate the issues of stagnated or out-dated systems while increasing flexibility as agency missions evolve over time,” says Henry Sowell, chief information security officer at Hortonworks Federal. “Enterprise open source also allows government agencies to reduce the risk of vendor lock-in and the vulnerabilities of un-supported software,” he adds.
  • Migrations: the sole scalable fix to tech debt.

    Migrations are both essential and frustratingly frequent as your codebase ages and your business grows: most tools and processes only support about one order of magnitude of growth before becoming ineffective, so rapid growth makes them a way of life. This isn't because they're bad processes or poor tools, quite the opposite: the fact that something stops working at significantly increased scale is a sign that it was designed appropriately to the previous constraints rather than being over designed.

  • Gui development is broken

    Why is this so hard? I just want low-level access to write a simple graphical interface in a somewhat obscure language.

OpenBSD and NetBSD

Security: Twitter and Facebook

  • Twitter banned Kaspersky Lab from advertising in Jan
     

    Twitter has banned advertising from Russian security vendor Kaspersky Lab since January, the head of the firm, Eugene Kaspersky, has disclosed.  

  • When you go to a security conference, and its mobile app leaks your data
     

    A mobile application built by a third party for the RSA security conference in San Francisco this week was found to have a few security issues of its own—including hard-coded security keys and passwords that allowed a researcher to extract the conference's attendee list. The conference organizers acknowledged the vulnerability on Twitter, but they say that only the first and last names of 114 attendees were exposed.

  • The Security Risks of Logging in With Facebook
     

    In a yet-to-be peer-reviewed study published on Freedom To Tinker, a site hosted by Princeton's Center for Information Technology Policy, three researchers document how third-party tracking scripts have the capability to scoop up information from Facebook's login API without users knowing. The tracking scripts documented by Steven Englehardt, Gunes Acar, and Arvind Narayanan represent a small slice of the invisible tracking ecosystem that follows users around the web largely without their knowledge.

  • Facebook Login data hijacked by hidden JavaScript trackers
     

    If you login to websites through Facebook, we've got some bad news: hidden trackers can suck up more of your data than you'd intended to give away, potentially opening it up to abuse.