Recently, someone from the Public Health Foundation contacted me because they found a blog post I had from back in 2005, specifically Corporate/Government Parodies on the Web. They asked if I’d like to update the broken reference to mypyramid.gov (which no longer exists) in favor of a new government nutrition website. Having gone back and re-read the post for context, I initially thought I’d just ignore it for the moment since I figured it had to be some automated webcrawler of sending emails to DNS contacts for any hits referencing the old .gov URL. But they actually sent me a followup email, so I thought I might go ahead and make some updates.
It’s been busy week, but I feel I’ve at least got something to show for it. The first big project I’ve worked on has gone public at ITEXPO East 2015 and I can actually talk about it now. The new service is called Switchvox Rescue.
About six months ago, I took a new job and left the position I’d held at the Alabama Supercomputer Center for roughly seven years. I’ve struggled whether I should write a post about why I chose to leave my old job or focus on the positive and talk about my new job. If you’re curious, this article at the Washington Business Journal covers some of the shenanigans that motivated me to leave my job with CSC.
So a while back I started looking at alternative VPS hosting providers. I was impressed by the service Linode provided, but started wondering if I’d get better bang for my buck going elsewhere. At the time, I was paying $20 / month for their smallest Xen VPS or $25 / month if I wanted their backup service. My hosting needs were modest, especially since I’d migrated just about everything from dynamic stuff with a DB backend to primarily serving static content. So I could really get away with something with leaner. I shied away from the extremely cheap OpenVZ providers, and tried a couple of different KVM VPS providers before I found one that offered a balance of cost, reliability, and performance.
TL;DR Support for NUMA systems in torque/Moab breaks existing means of specifying shared memory jobs and limits scheduling flexibility in heterogeneous compute environments.
My experience is based on SUSE SLES 11 SP1/SP2 with a stock kernel, so YMMV if you’re running a newer mainline kernel without all the backports.
I tested on two Supermicro systems. One with an LSI HBA card with 22x 2TB enterprise SATA drives (originally purchased to run OpenSolaris/ZFS). Second has an Adaptec hardware RAID controller with 36x 2TB enterprise SATA drives. Some of the data loss and stability issues I experienced may be attributed to later discovering the “enterprise” drives used in the first system turned out to be less RAID-friendly than the manufacturer claimed, eventually leading to them to replace ALL of my drives with a different model.
Btrfs was a preview in SLES SP1 and is “supported” in SP2 but with major restrictions if you wanted a supported configuration. Support in SP2 requires that you create btrfs filesystems using Yast and live with the limited options it allows. I’m guessing what you can do via Yast is the subset of features they tested enough to be willing to try and support. I tried using Yast to set up btrfs on one of our systems, but found their constraints too limiting given my use case and the organization I’d settled on in the SP1 days.
Update I should note I only partially sorted out getting this to actually work. Probably requires more tinkering and may be best to just go get an app that does the lock/unlock for you.
This procedure is roughly based on Lock Your Mac When Your iPhone Is Out of Range. I’d seen this in the past, but never got around to figuring out how to set it up. Since I’ve got an iPhone with good battery life, leaving Bluetooth on isn’t as scary as it was on my old Android phone, so I thought I’d give it a shot.
I’ve gone the extra steps of figuring out how to retrieve your password from Keychain in order to do the unlock. The sample unlock AppleScript in that post suggests storing your Mac account password in plain text in the script (not so great) and offers that you can save your script as “Run-only” to obfuscate it. I tried that for kicks and while the script itself is obfuscated, your plain text password is still there if you just cat the file.
Yet another time of migration (blog-wise)… TextDrive -> Joyent -> TextDrive 2 My web hosting has been a little up in the air recently (see Slashdot: Joyent Drops Lifetime Account Holders). I paid a few hundred bucks several years back (2005) for “lifetime” web hosting at what I perceived to be a cool up and coming company (read: they claimed to be pushing to support a lot of the flashy new web tech that wasn’t well supported by most shared web hosting providers at the time).
My foray into the world of Android phones is finally at an end, and am now the owner of a shiny iPhone 4S. It was an interesting experiment, and there were a few features that I will miss that I haven’t found a way to do on the iPhone, but the Android experience finally got bad enough (and I hit my 2 year contract anniversary) to push for a phone upgrade at work. There were just too many issues with my Droid and Android in general from a usability standpoint to suffer it any further. Issues with the Android ecosystem (at least as I’ve been able to experience it… maybe 4.0 will really start to address some of their problems):