Archive for the ‘WTF’ Category

Interested in becoming a SolarWinds Certified Professional FOR FREE?!?!

July 2nd, 2014

Whoa, whoa, whoa wait a minute WTF? FREE EXAMS? WHERE DO i SIGN UP?! Hold a minute. This isn’t just an arbitrary free exam.

SolarWinds Certified Professional Program!

This is an arbitrary exam which comes with a Prep Guide and a wealth of training and education to SUPPORT your taking and passing the exam! <3

Steps to SCP Success!

Steps Steps Steps! Wow, it can’t get easier than this (Okay, it can!)

The SolarWinds Learning Center!

It all starts at the Learning Center which breaks down each portion of the exam into Exam Objectives with respective training, education, videos and webinars, books and reference material and a load of other resources like SolarWinds Labs to help prepare and educate you for success!

Registering for the Exam consists of sending an email to the SolarWinds folks providing some details and then M-F within a decent period of time (It took me less than a days time) I received the link and credential information to take the SolarWinds Certified Professional Exam!

OMG i'M A SOLARWINDS CERTIFIED PROFESSIONAL!

And Poof, that’s it! Prepare, Register and then take the exam from the comfort of your own respective computer, no magical testing center to go to or lines to stand in!  If you think it can’t be this easy, I have to say, wow it is. So if you find yourself as someone who has or does work with SolarWinds or someone who WANTS to add that line item to their resume and career profile then look no further than this as a good way to progress!

One cool thing I learned recently is that SolarWinds model is “Try before you buy” and all of their products are available for a free 30 day trial to get your feet wet and see if it does what you want it to. Fast, Ready, and easy to work with spells awesome!

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Posted in Careers, Certification, Free, Technology, WTF | Comments (0)

Fixing “Comments are closed” problems on WordPress Blogs with Social

December 28th, 2012

There you are, sitting there posting an absolutely awesome blog post which is getting a LOT of attention. OMG THE HITS JUST KEEP COMING IN! EVERYONE KEEPS SAYING HOW AWESOME IT IS. Yet no one is commenting on it on the blog. WTF is going on here!   So you take a moment to browse over to your blog post everyone is so enamored with only to find in the comments section.

Comments are closed.

And you start freaking out. WTF IS GOING ON HERE!?!? I DIDN’T CLOSE COMMENTS.   It’s strongly possible, that you didn’t.  But you can fix this.

When this happened to me just the other day I immediately started doing searches for “Wordpress Comments are closed” “Wordpress comments disabled” “disabled comments” and every other iteration of it, only to find… a whole REAM of absolutely useless and piece of crap posts and forum conversations which did NOT help.   A lot of them refer to checking the “Discussions” area in the control panel of wordpress… Yea, that doesn’t change over night.

But I also recall some time ago having made a change from using Twitter Tools to “Social” because they claimed the tools I PREFERRED were no longer supported or would function, so upgrades will need to be done.

Here is the kicker, if you are using Social by MailChimp that could be the cause of your problem, so next steps involve visiting your WordPress Control Panel

And you may come across this little gem:

Social by MailChimp may be disabling your comments with it's "Social's Comment Display" - Check the box to re-enable your comments!

Turns out that Social has integrated it’s own Comment Display system… which I’ve never seen and could give a damn for since it essentially BROKE my comments.   So by taking the next step and by checking the box….

By checking "Disable Social's comment display" your old Disqus or other comments should be re-enabled!

All of a sudden my blog went from “Comments are closed.” to enabled and allowing people to COMMENT again! Hooray, right!

If you find this benefits or is useful to you, feel free to COMMENT and let me and everyone else know :)  Also if you do come across other solutions you wish to share in the comments, don’t hesitate to make it known!  Good luck and good commenting!

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Posted in Blog, Community, Social Media, Twitter, WTF | Comments (1)

HP StoreOnce D2D – Understanding the challenges associated with REALLY BAD NETAPP FUD

April 27th, 2011

Hey guys!   I was sitting here today, minding my own business… when the following tweet showed up in one of my search columns! (Why yes I do search on NetApp, and every major vendor in the Industry that I know a real lot about, I like to stay topical! oh and RT job opportunities… I know peoples ;))

#HP - Understanding the Challenges Associated with NetApp's Deduplication http://tek-blogs.com/a/sutt9r @TekTipsNetHawk 

So I thought “Well Hey! I’d like to understand the challenges associated with NetApp’s Deduplication! Let’s get down to business!”

I click the little link which takes me to THIS PAGE where I fill out a form to receive my “Complimentary White Paper” ooh, yay!   And let me tell you, other than the abusive form (Oh lovely… who makes people fill out FORMS for content.. yea I know, I know..) this thing looked pretty damn sweet!   FYI: By sweet, I mean it looks so professional, so nice, like a solid Marketing Group got their hands on this and prettified it! I mean look at it!

HP StoreOnce D2D - Understanding the Challenges Associated with NetApp Deduplication - Business White Paper

Tell me that doesn’t look damn professional! Hell, I’d even at first pass with NO knowledge, take everything contained within that document at face value as the truth, I mean cmon let’s cover the facts here.

  1. This whitepaper looks SWEET! It’s all logo’d out and everything too!
  2. It’s only 8 pages; that speaks of SOLID content including not only text, but pictures and CITING evidence! Sweet right?!
  3. And you said it; right there on the first page is says “BUSINESS WHITE PAPER” Tell me that does not spell PRO all over it.

So what I’m thinking is, clearly this has been vetted by a set of experts who have validated the data and ensured that it is correct; or at least within the context of the information consider the footer of this document claims to have been published January 2011.  So this CLEARLY should be current.

Yea… No. Not Quite.  Quite the opposite? I guess it may be time to explain though! But before I go there, Disclaimer time!

HP’s Disclaimer at the bottom of the document:

© Copyright 2011 Hewlett?Packard Development Company, L.P. The information contained herein is subject to change without notice. The only warranties for HP products and services are set forth in the express warranty statements accompanying such products and services. Nothing herein should be construed as constituting an additional warranty. HP shall not be liable for technical or editorial errors or omissions contained herein.

My Disclaimer for what you’re about to read:

I do not work for HP and I have nothing against HP.  I do not work for NetApp and have nothing against NetApp.  Yea I work for EMC – Wait, aren’t you the competition?! WHY ARE YOU RAGGING ON HP FOR THEIR POORLY WRITTEN PAPER?! I think that falls in line because, when *I* Publish something attacking NetApp’s deduplication I do the homework and validate it (Except for when I quote external third parties… Yea I don’t do that anymore because… you end up with a mess like this document that HP has released ;))  OMG Seriously?! Seriously HP!? You’ve spurned me to write this because you upset my competitive nature.   With that said, let’s get down to brass tacks.     Secondary Disclaimer:  I had forgotten I read this originally when this post came out HP Launches an Unprovoked Attack on NetApp Deduplication and you know what? between seeing it circulate AGAIN and having me fill out a form… yea Sean following bad data with bad data is #fail either way.    Tertiary Disclaimer; a lot of the ‘concerns’ and ‘considerations’ addressed in the HP Paper which they’re claiming StoreOnce is the bees knees can solve, are actually readily solved with Industry Best of Breed Avamar and Data Domain, let alone leveraging VNX Deduplication and Compression, but I won’t go there because that is outside of the boundaries of this particular post :)

The paper has been broken down into the following sections; “Challenge #, blah blah blah, maybe cited evidence, Takeaway” I plan to… give you the gist of the paper without quoting it verbatim (that’s like the paper itself!) but also not removing the context, and sprinkling commentary and sarcasm as needed ;)

Challenge #1:  Primary deduplication: Understanding the tradeoffs

This section has a lot of blah blah blah in it, but I’ll quote two areas which have CITED references;

While some may find this surprising given the continuing interest in optimization technologies, primary deduplication can impose some potentially significant performance penalties on the network.1

Primary data is random in nature. Deduplicating data leads to various data blocks being written to multiple places. NetApp’s WAFL file system exasperates the problem by writing to the free space nearest to the disk head. Reading the data involves recompiling these blocks into a format presentable to the application. This data reassembly overhead mandates a performance impact, commonly 20–50 percent.2

I particularly love this section for two reasons; one it’s VERY solid in its choice of words “can impose” not will impose, but it’s like “maybe?!?” This it not a game of “can” I have a cookie vs “may I have a cookie”, this is a white paper right? Give me some facts to work off of guys.   Oh, I said two reasons didn’t I.  Well, here is Reason #2 – Here’s the citing! [1 End Users Hesitate on Primary Deduplication; TheInfoPro TIP Insight, October 21, 2010]  I’ll chalk up to the possibility that I am clearly an IDIOT but I was unable to find the “Source” of this data.  So… soft language… inability to validate a point, sweet!

But wait, let me discuss the second citing for a second, yea let me do that.    I won’t go into WTF they’re saying in how they’re citing this as this is not an extensive and deep analysis of how WAFL and Data ONTAP operate but I decided “Whoa excellent backing data! Let me checking out that citing shall I?!”  So I go to the source [2 Evaluator Group, August, 2010] and I find… I can pay, $1999 to get this data!   Excellent! First idea which came to mind, “I should write stupid papers and then sell the data at MASSIVELY high costs.. nah I’ll stick to factual blog posts”   Yea, so I’m 0 for 2 in being able to “Validate” whatever these sources happen to be sharing, I’m sure you’ll be in the same boat too.    Oh but the best part? Let’s take a moment and read the Take Away, shall we?!

Takeaway – Deduplication is often the wrong technology for data reduction of primary storage.

OMG SERIOUSLY? THAT IS SERIOUSLY YOUR TAKEAWAY?! It’s like a cake made up of layers of soft language, filled it with unverifiable sources.   And it’s not like this is even very GOOD FUD, it’s just so… Ahh!!!!!! A number of us (non-netappians) got so pissed off when we read this, I mean SERIOUSLY?!?

Relax.. Relax, it can’t get any worse than that right?

Challenge #2: Fixed vs. variable chunking

Wow this reads like an advertisement for Avamar.  But seriously, this for the most part only discusses the differences between Fixed and Variable chunking, more educational than anything.  Not a whole lot for me to discuss other than noting the similarities in their message to the Industry Leading Avamar.

Takeaway – Using variable chunking allows HP StoreOnce D2D solutions to provide a more intelligent and effective approach for deduplication.

Wow Christopher, you’re getting tame.. you let them slide on that one!

Challenge #3: Performance issues and high deduplication ratios

NetApp suffers performance issues with high deduplication ratios; something NetApp engineers said on a post to the NetApp technical forum.3

NetApp is so concerned about the performance of their deduplication technology that Chris Cummings, senior director of data protection solutions for NetApp told CRN customers must acknowledge the “chance of performance degradation when implementing the technology” should they turn on the technology.4

Okay, sweet! Let’s rock this out! Not only do they have CITED sources of this data (You know I love it when I have data to refer to!) but they even provide embedded links so I can click to go directly to the data! (WOOHOO!)  And like any good detective… I did visit those links.   It was upon visiting those two links that two things came back to me. “Hmm, Chris Cummings quote from 2008.   Hmm, Forum conversation from 2009…” … Yea I was still AT NetApp during those two periods, OMG SERIOUSLY HP YOU’RE QUOTING DATA FROM 3 OR MORE YEARS AGO?!?! How can you NOT expect me to put that in caps?    Let’s take a little journey down almost ANY product or dev company for a moment… I’d like to visit VMware in this particular scenario.

“VMware is great for Virtualization applications, Oh, but not Mission Critical Applications, it’s not stable for that.  Do not virtualize mission critical applications”.   Yea.  you can almost QUOTE me as having said that. When would I might have said that? Maybe when VMware had GSX out (Pre-ESX days) and our computers were run with the power of Potatoes.    Yea, if you have NO dev cycle and you do not invest in development [Oh no you didn’t make a slighted attack on the MSA/EVA! … No I didn’t ;)]   But if you STOP development all things we’re discussing can absolutely be true! #WeirdAnecdoteOver

So, while I firmly agree in 2008 and 2009 there WERE Performance concerns the likes of which were discussed in those forums.  Very viable, Deduplication in general was maturing, I’m sure every product out there had similar problems (Data Domain which scales based upon CPU – with 4 year old CPUs probably couldn’t perform as well as it can today with our super Nehelem’s etc)    You need to realize it is 2011, we’re in an entirely new decade.  Please stop quoting “Where’s the beef” or making “Hanging Chad” references like Ted Mosby in How I met your mother because while true at the time, not so applicable today.

Takeaway – HP typically finds 95 percent duplicate data in backup and deduplicates the data without impacting performance on the primary array.

I almost forgot the takeaway! (Hey! I’m verbose… You should know that by now!)   So… what I’m hearing you say is… Because HP doesn’t have a native Primary Storage Deduplication solution like NetApp or EMC… there is no performance impact on the primary array! Hooray! Yea… WTF SEAN?  I mean, I guess if I wanted I could repurpose most of this paper to position Avamar which seems a LOT more versatile than HP StoreOnce but okay, let’s move past!

I’m going to lump Challenge #4, #5 and #6 together because they have little to no place in this paper.

Challenge #4: One size fits all
Takeaway – Backup solutions are optimized for sequential data patterns and are purpose built. HP Converged Infrastructure delivers proven solutions. NetApp’s one?size?fits?all approach is ineffective in the backup and deduplication market.
Challenge #5: Backup applications and presentation
Takeaway – NetApp does not provide enough flexibility for today’s complex backup environments.
Challenge #6: Snapshots vs. backup
Takeaway – Snapshots are part of a data protection solution, but are incomplete by themselves. Long?term storage requirements are not addressed effectively by snapshots alone. HP Converged Infrastructure provides industry?leading solutions, including StoreOnce for disk?based deduplication for a complete data protection strategy.

I’m sorry, this is no contest and these points have absolutely no place in a paper educating on the merits and challenges of Deduplication with NetApp.  This definitely has it’s place in a whole series of OTHER competitive and FUD based documents, but not here, not today.

In summary…

Sean… (Yes I know your name!) You wrote this paper for HP right? As a Technologist and Technology Evangelist for that matter, I would absolutely LOVE to learn about the merits, the values, the benefits of what the HP StoreOnce D2D solution brings to market and can do to solve customers challenges.    But honestly man, this paper?   I COMPETE with NetApp and you pissed me off with your fud slinging.   I know *I* can piss off the competition when I sling (FACTS) so just think about it.  We’re a fairly small community, we all know each other for the most part.  (If you’re at Interop in a few weeks, I’ll be at EMCWorld, feel free to txt me and we can meet up and I won’t attack you, I promise ;))    Educate, but please do not release this kind of trash into the community… Beautiful beautiful trash mind you I mean everything I said about how amazingly this was presented, honestly BEST WHITE PAPER EVER. But that has got to be some of the worst most invalid content I’ve encountered in my life. (As applicable to how I stated it :))

I guess I should add a little commercial so someone doesn’t go WTF – I mean what I said above not only about the technologies which were discussed.    If you think StoreOnce is a great solution, then you’ll be floored by Avamar and Data Domain.  They’re not best of breed in the industry without good reason.

Feel free to comment as appropriate, it’s possible this has been exhausted in the past but SERIOUSLY I don’t want to see this again. ;)

Step one you say we need to talk, He walks you say sit down it’s just a talk, He smiles politely back at you, You stare politely right on through.

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Posted in Avamar, Deduplication, emc, HP, NetApp, VNX, WTF | Comments (5)

Leading with the Unified EMC VNX – Watch, Look and Listen [Contest Entry too]

March 30th, 2011

Hi guys! You’ve seen me produce videos in the past I’m sure, although it is not that often that *I* am actually IN the videos where you can see me, if even for a moment.  (You let me know if you like that, or not ;))

Through a series of events, I ended up recording this video.  For your reference: This IS a first draft, in an infinite style of regularly updating my style for delivery.  [This was done using a little camera and a tiny mount on not a whole lot of space on a whiteboard… if I went Pro for the next one… you’ll be all OMFG :)]

Initially, I had drawn up some notes of how I’d present this.. so in the effort of WTF and Full disclosure (You know me all too well ;)) These are those preliminary whiteboard/notes.

Unisphere, Silos, FAST-VP, FAST Cache Ease of Use, Maximum Efficiency, Consistent Performance

I did have some other pictures which showed bits and pieces.. but I’m sure you get the gist of it!  So what exactly am I saying with this video, with these whiteboards.. with this.. you know, whatever it is I’m doing here. :)

Three things actually.   One of the cool things about the VNX is that it provides you with:

  • Ease of Use – With simplicity of management using Unisphere, vCenter Integration, Single Pane for all arrays
  • Maximum Efficiency – With FAST-VP, You can go Thin, and use the right tier at the right time with auto-tiering
  • Consistent Performance – The magic of EFDs, QOS, FAST Cache, Wide-Striping, Consolidate and guarantee SLAs

I know what you’re saying “OMFG CHRISTOPHER, ARE YOU IN MARKETING?” No. And I usually stand by that, because I get things done ;).  Yes, I intentionally chose fitting points which happen to coincide with the acronym EMC, you know why? Because for one thing it’s easier to remember. :)  Not to mention, things should truly be easy to work with, and enjoyable; all the while providing an accurate picture of the story at hand!

Look forward to some future series where I actually go into the guts of the system and show you (from my perspective) the how’s and the why’s of these things [Time permitting ofcourse ;)]

So, for now, I leave you with this video.  Take it with a grain of salt, it IS a first-draft cutting room floor version.  As soon as I get my new mbp (April 1st?!) You should see some far better *Perhaps Annoying* videos coming from me ;)

And I know that some of you love me in videos sometimes… so for those of you who want to see me unplugged in an off-the-cuff impromptu interview (No, I’m not drunk), here is the infamous “I’m CXI, I’m from the Internets!” video!

I hope you enjoyed that.   Now, I’d love to hear your feedback. Where you say “Wow, I never thought of it that way” Or, “OMG You’re a total tool!” Yea, I’m game for either of those – Whatever you have to offer up, constructive or otherwise!

Oh, and I also submitted this for an internal contest (Which if I win.. will give me a sweet wrap-around terrace suite at EMC World [Yes, you can all come hang out in my room ;)] So, support away in every way possible! :)

Watch this space for more stupidity, err I mean great content in the future!

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Posted in Celerra, Efficiency, emc, Exchange, FAST, Microsoft, NAS, Oracle, SAS, SATA, Sharepoint, SQL, SSD, Storage, Technology, Virtualization, VNX, WTF | Comments (0)

Music Recognition Redefined – Introducing SoundHound! #ShazamFail #SoundHoundFTW

August 17th, 2010

Yea… I cannot start off telling you all about recognition redefined without.. first giving you a story about how I came to learn of this amazing tool to battle all tools!

“Ooh! What’s that playing on the radio! Wow, let me see… (Pulls out iPhone4, loads up search and types in shaz – Select Shazam and select “Tag”) [listening… listening… listening…]

You are limited to 5 tags per month!

?!?!?WTF?!?!? I’m limited to 5 per tags per month?!? Okay fine.. sure that was a complete surprise, but I’ll download the pay version and finish tagging my song there. 

Just say no!

HI IM SHAZAM AND EVEN IF YOU PAY YOU STILL GET ADS – JUST LIKE CLASSMATES.COM  Seriously?!   Yea, #fail multiplied by #fail equals me going to look for another solution.   And it was then (that I complained about this on Twitter) that @jeffcoffee suggested I check out SoundHound!  

 SoundHound on the go!SoundHound Mobile

Okay, let me first off set the disclaimer:

There is a ‘5 per month’ limit on the Free version of SoundHound as well, but I was already in the market for a new product which clearly was NOT Shazam.

So, I load up the app and I get splashed with this screen

SoundHound Splash Screen SoundHound and bad singing of Yellow Submarine SoundHound finding Yellow Submarine SoundHound Share Song SoundHound Twitter Integration 

First of all, let me just say.   Whoa!  I decide to click “Tap Here” and I proceed to sing the Beatles “The Yellow Submarine” (I did consider filming me doing that… for your sake, I didn’t ;))

Lo and behold shortly into the song, BAM! It recognized it from my very own (at this point out of tune voice)  Wow! I should share this feat with someone shouldn’t I!? Ooh! Twitter and FB integration!  Yea, that’s the cost of doing business though.    But what if I don’t know the name of the song… all I can really remember is an artist…

Speak the name of your artist

With the ease of knowing ‘words’ I simply say a song name or an artist name by clicking on the “Title or Artist” section and bam! I’m presented with Michael Jackson!

SoundHound Settings

And while it is very nice that they have the settings easy enough to configure inside of the Settings section… the following is something I tested (both from my iPhone and my iPad) Something I had wished Shazam could do.. but never did, and frankly I don’t care if they ever support it at this point!

Suppose the following situation exists:   You’re listening to a song out of iTunes/iPod on your device, or even listening to something on Pandora! And you’re saying “Man, I wish I had the lyrics to that song, or knew what album it was off of, or other details” etc etc..  So you go and launch Shazam and immediately all sound CEASES to operate.  WTF?!? That’s kind of dismissing!

SoundHound Now Playing!

I welcome you to this feature in SoundHound called “Now Playing!”   Yes, this screen shot is from my iPad because it looks soooooo much cooler in that sense ;) But it works JUST as well on the iPhone (I guarantee :))

What's Hot with SoundHound (iPad edition) What's Hot with SoundHound (iPhone Edition)

And the last thing I’d like to share from my playing with this, is the “What’s Hot” “UnderPlayed” and “Just found by Users” options.  As you can see the iPad version looks a lot sweeter than the iPhone version… :)

And last but not least, I’d like to share some of the ‘highlights’ mentioned from their actual website which incase I missed any of this, you have it here! :)

Soundhound on Android Free Version of SoundHound
Now Available for iOS and Android

Highlights

Blazing fast music identification
Sing & Hum recognition
Voice-directed music search
In-app lyrics

Special on iPad:

Big, beautiful lyrics and music videos
The SoundHound Ticker


Version 3.3.1 for iPhone, iPod touch and iPad
Version 2.0.1 for Android

– SoundHound (free): 5 IDs per month
Available on the App Store

– SoundHound ?: unlimited
Available on the App Store

Soundhound on iOS

Oh, and let’s not ignore the one feature (which seemed to be overlooked in too many ways in the features…)

Instantly Launch a Pandora Station (SoundHound)

Instantly launch a Pandora Station!!!

Okay..  I think that is enough… I’ll let you tell me your favorite functions, features and otherwise.   If you found this useful at all, and if you kick the ‘”Shazam” habit, let me know.  If you’re from Shazam I’d love to hear your feedback as well. :) 

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Posted in Apple, Free, Geek, Google, iPhone, Technology, WTF | Comments (2)

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