Saturday, October 28, 2006

Unbreakable LInux for everyone, not just Oracle customers.

During the Oracle Unbreakable Linux (read Redhat) announcement, Oracle also unvailed that the support is available to everyone.
"Oracle's Unbreakable Linux program is available to all Linux users for as low as $99 per system per year," said Oracle President Charles Phillips. "You do not have to be a user of Oracle software to qualify. This is all about broadening the success of Linux. To get Oracle support for Red Hat Linux all you have tH do is point your Red Hat server to the Oracle network. The switch takes less than a minute."

Looks like there might be help to RedHat as well;
"We think it's important not to fragment the market," said Oracle's Chief Corporate Architect Edward Screven. "We will maintain compatibility with Red Hat Linux. Every time Red Hat distributes a new version we will resynchronize with their code. All we add are bug fixes, which are immediately available to Red Hat and the rest of the community. We have years of Linux engineering experience. Several Oracle employees are Linux mainline maintainers."
Oracle Linux

Insiders mummer that Larry really wanted to have Oracle Linux but had to still support RedHat due to technical reasons. So in the near future, Oracle might embrace one of the ReaHat Clones. CentOS, WhiteBox comes to mind. But that is too near in the fture, for now if you want Oracle to support your Linux, it has to be RedHat.
It seems the industry leaders were very eager to hear the news. Following are some of the quote by those leaders;

"As a customer with first hand experience of Oracle's outstanding support organization, Dell will use Oracle to support Linux operating systems internally," said Michael Dell, Chairman of the Board, Dell. "Oracle's new Linux support program will help us drive standards deeper into the enterprise. Today we're announcing that Dell customers can choose Oracle's Unbreakable Linux program to support Linux environments running on Dell PowerEdge servers."

"Having worked with Oracle for many years in the enterprise computing space, we believe that the Oracle Unbreakable Linux program will bring tremendous value to our mutual Linux customers," said Paul Otellini, President and CEO, Intel Corporation. "Our work with Oracle on this program will be an important extension to our longstanding enterprise computing relationship."

"HP and Oracle's collaboration and testing of Linux with integrated stacks of hardware, software, storage, and networking has helped create numerous best practices across the industry. HP welcomes the addition of Oracle's Unbreakable Linux program to the portfolio," said Mark Hurd, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, HP.

"Oracle's support for Red Hat Linux will encourage broader adoption of Linux in the enterprise," said Bill Zeitler, Senior Vice President & Group Executive, IBM Systems and Technology Group. "IBM shares Oracle's goal of making Linux a reliable, highly standard, cost effective platform for mission critical applications backed by world class support."

"Linux is important to us, and to our customers," said Don Rippert, Chief Technology Officer, Accenture. "We applaud Oracle's efforts to bring enterprise-quality support to Linux with the Oracle Unbreakable Linux program announcement. Together with Oracle, we at Accenture look forward to making the Linux experience even better for our customers."

"Oracle's Unbreakable Linux program will greatly expand the servicing options available to our AMD Linux customers," said Hector Ruiz, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Advanced Micro Devices. "We are excited by the program's potential to further enhance the success of AMD Linux servers in the enterprise."

Bearing Point
"It is critical that our customers have true enterprise-quality support for their Linux deployments. Oracle's Unbreakable Linux program support delivers the level of confidence our customers need to run Linux in their data centers," said Harry You, CEO, Bearing Point.

"The combined power of EMC and Oracle solutions bring superior reliability, scalability, high availability, and now, enhanced enterprise supportability to Linux users. We are confident that joint Linux solutions from EMC and Oracle will deliver enterprise scale and quality while lowering the cost of infrastructure for our customers," said Joe Tucci, Chairman, CEO, President, EMC.

"As Oracle's only systems management ISV at the highest level in Oracle's Partner Program, BMC Software is excited to see Oracle's deepening commitment to Linux," said Bob Beauchamp, BMC Software President and CEO. "Business Service Management from BMC Software with the Oracle Unbreakable Linux program meets customer demand for lower cost and higher quality support for their infrastructure."

"The world's largest enterprises must have the flexibility to quickly and continually adapt to today's rapidly changing business requirements, without incurring risk," said Dan Warmenhoven, CEO of Network Appliance. "The Oracle Unbreakable Linux program is designed to drive the key benefits of Linux - including flexibility, reliability, and simplicity - directly into the data center. The longstanding relationship between NetApp and Oracle has enabled us to continuously deliver superior enterprise solutions to enable business agility and improve reliability - all tenets of the NetApp brand."

Well that is a good deal of information for this post. I will have another article relating to Oracle Linux in near future as I am a Oracle customer, I will convert some of the Windows boxen to Linux and see how it ares.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Start your GRID with a Load Balanced MySQL Cluster.

Typical MySQL Cluster

I was wondering around Howtoforge, looking for ISPConfig, (OK it is another article!) when I noticed the guide for Load Balanced MySQL Cluster. I have setup many of those in my work. Never with a easy guide, just following instructions found on grid technology forums, Google search etc. After a few installations, it becomes a nature to you. But my biggest problem is explaining the process to another. I do it but with quite bit of difficulties.
Remember though, due to the nature of the beast, you will need a lot of memory, say for 1GB database, will need at least 1.1GB usable memory on each node.
That is the reason this guide is valuable, along with it's content, it is fairly well written.
Why do I need a Load balanced MySQL cluster? Well if you have a MySQL database that is very important to your operations, it is always better to have more than one copy of the database. But rather than keeping two copies of the database on two computers, and using one at a time, Load Balanced solution will allow you to use bothe computers at the same time. Providing disaster recovery means and higher through put at the same time. In my Oracle servers, I use Oracle RAC clustering technology. Which does the same thing, but at a higher price.

The cluster the author setup is load-balanced by a high-availability load balancer that in fact has two nodes that use the Ultra Monkey package which provides heartbeat (for checking if the other node is still alive) and ldirectord (to split up the requests to the nodes of the MySQL cluster).
He used Debian Sarge for all nodes. So you may have to check a bit if you are using other distributions. The MySQL version 5.0.19 was used. If you do not want to use MySQL 5, you can use MySQL 4.1 as well.

This howto is meant as a practical guide; it does not cover the theoretical backgrounds. They are treated in a lot of other documents on the web.
Again to thank and protect the author, this does not come with any warranty. He goes on to say that this is not the only way of setting up such a system. There are many ways of achieving this goal but this is the way I take.
So without any further rumblings, here is the article Load Balanced MySQL Cluster.
But there is also another article on MySQL Cluster, on MySQL Site.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Fedora Core 6 the ZOD, is out of the Door

The Fedora Project has announced the release of Fedora Core 6 (Zod). Install-time access to third-party package repositories, extensive performance improvements, support for Intel-based Macs, and a new GUI virtualization manager are some of the primary features. Additionally, Fedora Core 6 provides various improvements on the desktop, including a new default font and theme, the latest releases of GNOME and KDE, and additional options in window managers.
So if your grids were running on Fedora distribution, it ia time to get ready for trnsformation.
*Fedora Core 6 ships with the [WWW] 2.6.18 Linux kernel, and there are no longer separate kernels for multi-processor and single-processor architectures. A single kernel now automatically detects your processor.
*[WWW] 7.1 is included, and it dynamically configures monitor resolution and refresh rates to limit the amount of required user configuration.
*Fedora Core 6 runs on Intel-based Macs.
*Improved i18n support using the default [WWW] SCIM input method, including more languages such as Sinhalase (Sri Lanka) and Oriya, Kannada, and Malayalam (India). Fedora Core now provides an easy interface to switch the input methods using im-chooser.
*The GNOME 1.x legacy stack has been removed from Fedora Core, and added to Fedora Extras.
Now you can add dual core single core, and macs (Intel) to your mixture of computer in your grid or grid technology.
But before jumping and hugging ZOD, read this discussion on Slashdot.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Oracle Grid Director on Grid Technology

Oracle Grid Director on Managing Large Deployments

Q&A on Gridtoday, Oracle director of Grid computing Bob Thome is interviewed on the complexity, management and security issues that arise when implementing Grid infrastructures, and why Grid is still worth the effort. According to Thome, political and cultural issues the No. 1 obstacle to Grid deployment.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Is the grid for me?

There is a very interesting discussion going on at /. About "to grid or not to grid", A user asks in askslashdot ""In my job at a (large) investment bank I am constantly being pushed to use grid technology. I have many problems with this (not least that our data center is at best 100 Mb/s and our software is actually more data than computation heavy). A typical batch job takes 10-30 minutes consisting of around 10,000 trades. I would far rather spend the time and money on multi-core machines and optimizing the software than on the latest fad technology. I am interested to hear from other people in a similar position and, in particular, why or why not they chose grid software over improving the existing code to leverage better processor technology, and which grid software they chose to use and why. Or, conversely, why they chose not to use grid software."
There are many a comments and advise together with IT staff and Management disagreements and wishes are brought forth.
I suggest that you at least browse through the discussion.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Economical view at grid technology.

Gridtoday has interviewed Robert Cohen an economist, Economic Strategy Institute fellow and Cohen Communications Group president to discusses some of his studies looking at how Grid computing, SOA and Web services have transformed the industrial landscape. In particular, Cohen discusses how grids have affected the automotive sector, a topic on which he presented at EGEE'06.
Cohen said during the interview, "I think many industries are beginning to use grids and SOAs to generate their core profits. As this becomes more evident, business processes could change in a wider range of industries beyond autos, aerospace, semiconductors and finance where they have been most noticeable. This could result in dramatic improvements in productivity as well as firms using the global economy as their base for design and product development."
Read more at gridtoday.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Grid snippets from Gridtoday

In big Grid news: Voltaire has entered the grid management game with its GridVision Enterprise software (GRIDtoday should have more on this next week); an automotive intelligence provider implemented an enterprise grid with Oracle; the Open Science Grid received a well-deserved $30 million from the NSF; the Louisiana Optical Network Initiative is working with Dell to create a 30- teraflop grid consisting of six high-performance clusters; and, sticking with the tera-scale theme, Intel CTO Justin Rattner discussed his company's prototype teraflop processors. Of course, depending on your interests, there are plenty of other interesting items, as well. Enjoy.