Synaptics Touchpad drivers now in Test Kernels

May 14, 2014

Great news, yesterday the i2c Linux kernel drivers from Synaptics made it upstream and are in the proposed repository.  This is relevant for those Sputnik 3 users who have upgraded from Ubuntu 12.04 to either 13.10 or 14.04 LTS.

If you want to start kicking the tires before the drivers hit updates, you can enable the proposed repository and get to the test kernels by following  the instructions here:

https://wiki.ubuntu.com/Testing/EnableProposed

What the issue was

From 13.10 on there is better i2c support and since there weren’t any drivers, this caused the touchpad to operate in very basic i2c mode, meaning no multi-touch, tap-to-click, scrolling, etc.  Users were either left with a minimally-functional touchpad in i2c mode, or they had to end up blacklisting the i2c-hid modules as a workaround so the touchpad would come up in psmouse mode and operate similar to how it did in 12.04.

Going Forward

Canonical, who has been instrumental in this whole process, is  also doing their best to try and backport this functionality into 14.04 LTS so that users can take advantage of native i2c touchpad support.

Thanks 

I would like to give big shout outs to Synaptics, Canonical and Kent Baxley from Canonical for making this happen!!

Pau for now….


Developers share experiences running Ubuntu on Dell M3800 and XPS 15

May 12, 2014

Back in November when we  launched Sputnik 3, we also announced its “unofficial big brother,” the Dell M3800 Precision workstation and the Dell XPS 15.  This announcement was based on the after-hours work that Dell Linux engineer Jared Dominguez did to test and document the system.

Quite a few developers have referenced Jared’s work, taken the plunge and installed Ubuntu on these beefier systems.

M3800 Precision workstation

Here is a video that Rudy Vissers from Belgium created last month.  Rudy walks us through his new M3800 Precision including touchscreen and graphics.

XPS 15 laptop

Web developer Matt Woodward, who is a Principal IT Specialist for the US Senate and one of the original Project Sputnik beta cosmonauts, decided on upgrading to the XPS 15.  He shared his experience running Ubuntu on the XPS 15 on his blog earlier this month.  Here is an excerpt:

…Once Ubuntu is installed everything works out of the box. The screen runs at the full, mind-blowing 3200×1800 resolution, and even the touch screen works. No issues with sound card, WiFi, or anything else. Awesome…

If you need something a bit bigger and beefier than the XPS 13 developer edition, you just may want to check out either the M3800 or XPS 15.

If you’d like to see these as official products that come with Ubuntu pre-installed add your voice here:  Gathering interest on official Ubuntu support for Precision M3800  No promises but who knows!

Extra-credit reading

Pau for now…


App Think Tank: Open Source all the way

April 28, 2014

This week I’m continuing with the video series from our Application think tank earlier this year.  The videos this week are centered around the topic of applications and software strategy: what should your foundation be, what should your strategy be going forward and how do you deal with what you have.

To kick this topic off, here is a video featuring Barry Libenson, SVP and CIO at Safeway.  The question posed was what role does Open Source play in your software strategy.  Barry says what he never thought he would say, “Open source all the way.”  Take a listen as he explains one man’s conversion.

As Barry explains, open source isn’t just for the bleeding edge anymore, its for mainstream enterprises.  It features a robust ecosystem and is where the talent is.  Whether you’re a start-up or Fortune 50 company, as Barry says, Open Source all the way.

Stay tuned

Tomorrow we’ll look how the American Cancer Society and Intel have set up their guidelines for new applications being created.

The Think Tank, Sessions one and two

Extra-credit reading (previous videos)

Pau for now…


DevOps Days NYC — Jonathan Reams of MongoDB

January 8, 2014

As I continue in my series of videos from DevOps days NYC a few months ago, here is an interview with Jonathan Reams of MongoDB.

Johnathan is systems engineer on Mongo’s DevOps team and is helping to make MongoDB, the NoSQL non-relational database, more appealing to operations.

Some of the ground Jonathan covers:

  • Mongo’s huMONGOus recent round of funding
  • As a NoSQL database, how is Mongo different from traditional relational databases
  • How does MongoDB compare to other non-relational databases like Couchbase or Basho’s Riak
  • Seeking to widen appeal beyond developers to operations
  • Whats next for Mongo for both developers and ops

Extra-credit reading

  • Military Supply Data Search Tool Uses MongoDB – InformationWeek
  • MongoDB grabs $150M in funding, now top NYC startup at $1.2B valuation – VentureBeat

Pau for now…


DevOps Days NYC: Mike Ainsworth of SaltStack

January 7, 2014

Infrastructure automation and configuration management have become a hot topic as organizations, particularly those in the web and cloud space have continued to scale out. The first player, that helped define the space, was CFengine.  Heavy weights in this space now include Puppet and Chef, and at Dell we lead, Project Crowbar, an open source effort in this area.

The new kid on the block, based in Salt Lake city, is SaltStack.   Although relatively new, they count LinkedIn as one of their users.   At DevOps Days NYC back in October I grabbed some time with Salt solutions engineer, Mike Ainsworth.  Here is what Mike had to say:

Some of the ground Mike covers

  • What does SaltStack do
  • When did they get their start and how has their momentum been
  • How they differ from the other players in the space
  • How Linkedin is using SaltStack
  • The technical details re what they are focusing on going forward

Extra-credit reading

Pau for now…


Insight into the technology behind Goldman Sachs

December 17, 2013

Last week I attended the Gartner Data Center conference in Las Vegas.  I went to talk to customers, do booth duty (I talked about the app-centric world and how IT can best respond to it) and check out a few sessions.

The best session I attended was a power-point-free discussion with Don Duet, Co-head of Goldman Sach’s Technology division.  Below are a few of the things that Don talked about and comments he made which I thought were particularly interesting.  It’s not just web companies that are pushing the technology envelope.

Goldman’s Technology

  • Goldman Sachs’ has 36,000 employees, 6,000 of which are developers (10,000 people in tech overall).  They have 30 PB’s of data.  They support their employees with half a million cores.
  • Goldman builds their infrastructure around their applications
  • Goldman’s four Big Bets
    • Commodity computing
    • Software defined everything
    • Drive everything in infrastructure from an application perspective
    • Open Source and Open Standards
  • Don and team do an exercise where they talk about how they would architect Goldman if they were starting fresh today (“Goldman 2.0″)
  • “It’s harder and harder to tell where the business stops and IT begins”
  • “Most of our infrastructure should be able, over time, to migrate to the public cloud (once security gets better)”

Extra-credit reading

Pau for now…


Update: Project Sputnik Profile tool

December 11, 2013

About a month ago I blogged that, with renewed vigor and resources, we were tackling the Project Sputnik Profile Tool – a tool that enables a developer to quickly set up an environment without cluttering up their system. The announcement included a new collaboration with the folks from Docker and a request for feedback from the Community by December 3.

That date has now passed and Peter Owens, who is the project manager for the Profile Tool effort, has collated the feedback and mapped it against our vision for the tool and our minimum requirements.

(When not managing the profile tool effort Peter, as Director of Software Engineering in Dell Services, leads a development team responsible for the delivery of Managed-Private Clouds to global customers and expanding Dell’s OpenStack /DevOps development capability. Peter is based Dell’s Cloud Centre of Excellence in Dublin Ireland.)

Here is Peter’s  summary:

What we’ve learned

It is clear that you believe we are on the right track with the Profile Tool and that our plan to leveraging Docker will allow users to set up environments with minimum impact on system resources.

Where the feedback became very interesting was in the following areas:

1) project lifecycle

We need to define user stories for the following scenarios:

  • where the tool is re-run or a project has already been setup by a user
  • the project definition is changed
  • adding and removing packages
  • handling changes to languages or frameworks pulled into a project

2) User specific configurations

  • to avoid conflicts, profiles should not be keyed solely on username

3) Specifying language versions

  • we need to specify language versions within potentially multi-project environments
  • users should be able to specify the language version from within a project

It was generally felt that separating out usernames, packages and config definitions was the correct approach. There were also some useful comparisons with other tools such as Boxen which enables you to centralize your configs for an entire organization. This means a “template” can be created for new hires or groups of developers.

 A Big Thanks and Next Steps

We are very grateful to those who took the time to contribute, share this initiative with their respective communities and provide feedback. Based on the feedback we’ve received we have started working on user story requirements which we hope to have done by the end of the year.  After that we will start coding in January.

As you’d expect we will be using a GitHub central repository where all the code can stay in sync. Code changes will be committed to this and other developers will pull them (sync them to their local repository). To start with we will be providing read-only access to the central repository, so the community will be able to keep track of our progress!  Once we get a little further along we will open up the repository for others to jump in.

Stay tuned and thanks again!

Extra-credit reading

  • Dell aims for cloudy orbit with Sputnik Ubuntu developer project – The Register

Pau for now…


Introducing Sputnik 3 and its unofficial big brother

November 15, 2013

Sputnik3

Sputnik 3

First, a little background.  Nearly a year ago today we launched the first Dell XPS 13 Developer Edition.  This Ubuntu-based client-to-cloud platform was the result of an internal skunkworks effort, Project Sputnik.  Thanks to strong community input and support the project became a product.

Within a few months of launching the initial XPS 13 Developer Edition (Sputnik 1), we introduced “Sputnik 2” solving for the biggest issue with the first release, monitor resolution.

Today we are announcing the availability of Sputnik 3, the XPS 13 Developer Edition featuring the 4th generation Intel processors. This laptop, which is touch-enabled, will replace the existing XPS 13 Developer Edition.

ubuntu_black-orange_hexAnd since we’re talking about systems and Ubuntu, in response to the continuous requests for a more powerful version of the Developer Edition, we have taken the first steps by doing some testing on the Precision M3800 and posting the results.

This system news is on the back of our announcement earlier this week about the relaunching of the Profile Tool effort and our request for input from you all.

The Sputnik 3 Product specs are as follows:

  • XPS13-DEProcessor: 4th generation Intel i7
  • Display: 13.3″ Full High Definition touch display (1080p)
  • System memory: 8GB
  • Graphics: Intel HD graphics 4440 (HD 5000 in the case of the enterprise version)
  • Hard drive: 256GB SSD drive
  • Standard Service: 1 year Dell ProSupport and onsite service after remote diagnostics
  • Operating system: Ubuntu 12.04 LTS
  • Community projects: Cloud launcher and Profile tool (for more info see Tuesday’s update)

Availability of Sputnik 3

Starting today the updated XPS 13 Developer Edition is available in the

Pricing for the system will not increase and will remain $1,549.99

Early next week the Developer Edition will be available in Canada.

For North America, the US and Canada, in addition to the i7 configuration, there will also be an i5/128GB config  that will be available on a build-to-order basis and priced at $1249.99.

By the end of November, the Developer Edition will be available in

[Update 12/20/13: Sputnik 3 now available in Europe]

  • United Kingdom
  • Ireland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Austria
  • Spain
  • Netherlands
  • Italy
  • Switzerland

Europe – Wave 2:  Available in December

  • Belgium
  • Denmark
  • Norway
  • Sweden

Testing Ubuntu on the Precision M3800 mobile workstation

While the XPS 13 has proven to be very popular with developers, since we started

Dell Precision M3800

Dell Precision M3800

project Sputnik there has been a group in the community that has been asking for a “big brother” for the XPS 13 developer edition, i.e. a system with 16GB of RAM that offered a larger screen and more horsepower.

With the above in mind, when Project Sputnik team member Jared Dominguez learned about the sleek new  Precision M3800 that was coming out, he finagled his way into getting a system to do some testing.

You can find Jared’s detailed results here but the net is “For the most part, everything [he] tested works,” the one exception being the SD card reader.   The resourceful Jared then shipped his system to Chris Ball, a buddy of his that maintains the SD/MMC/SDIO subsystem of the Linux kernel, and who graciously agreed to volunteer time debugging the Linux driver for this card reader.  We will keep you updated on the progress.

So while Jared’s testing is not official it should be enough to get most devs going running Ubuntu  on the M3800.  And like the initial project Sputnik offering, if we get enough positive feedback, we might be able to offer it as an official pre-installed offering.

Extra-credit reading

Pau for now…


Project Sputnik Profile Tool: Dell commits engineering resources, Docker joins the cause and we want your input!

November 12, 2013

Sputnik_Sticker_FinalWhen we first introduced Project Sputnik over a year ago we talked about two community projects: the profile tool and the cloud launcher.  We garnered a fair amount of attention and made some progress but unfortunately not as much as I would have liked.  I am very happy to report therefore that recently we have put together an intrepid group of developers and architects within Dell to pick up the profile tool charge.

While we’ve had a few false starts in the past, besides the addition of committed Dell resources, there are a couple of other things that set this time apart: 1) we are starting from an internal use case and 2) we are working with and leveraging some of the work of Docker.

And just like when project Sputnik originally kicked off, we want to get your input and feedback on the Profile Tool and its direction (see a few paragraphs down for what specifically we are looking to you all for).

Internal need

Scratching your own itch is a key component to any self-respecting open source project. Read on to see where ours came in. A group within the Enstratius team, which we acquired back in the Spring, is switching to Sputniks (Dell XPS 13 developer edition) as their primary laptop. One thing that team member John Vincent was tasked with doing was getting these new systems set up quickly for the team. He was looking for a way to automate the process when his boss suggested he check out what we were hoping to do with the profile tool.  John liked what he saw so much that he joined the team.

Besides this representation from the Enstratius team, the Sputnik team also includes members from Dell Services’ office of the CTO and the Dell Cloud Services development and architecture team.

Working with the Docker crew

DockerRather than re-inventing the wheel, and to help provide perspective, we are now working with the folks from Docker.  They will be giving us their feedback, helping with integration and creating a Go profile.

As their CEO Ben Golub said, “The Dell team has delivered real benefits for the developer community through Project Sputnik and we expect same from the profile tool. We’re committed to working with their team to provide the best possible integration with Docker so those benefits continue to grow.”

Profile tool: Some details and a quick POC

The idea behind the profile tool is to enable a developer to quickly set up an environment without cluttering up their system.  This applies whether it is a “clean” computer for a new hire or a new project for an existing team member where the developer needs to use a new language or tool-chain.

A profile is basically a collection of simple YAML files, stored in a pre-determined directory structure, which specify one or more of the following:

  • Language:  a programming language e.g. Python, Ruby, JavaScript
  • Framework:  a language-specific software platform which simplifies the programming task (e.g. Django, Rails, Node.js)
  • Library:  an additional software component, such jinja2 or numpy for Python
  • Service: a software service used by the project, such as a database or message queue

To use a profile, it is downloaded to the developer’s machine, and an isolated environment (Linux container) is automatically created using Docker if it is part of the profile.

Input from the community

Here is the Profile Tool repository on Github and to give you a feel for how the profile tool might work, here is a quick POC (note that these actions aren’t actually being executed. We’re just logging them as if we were).

We would love to get your input. Some of the different ways you can contribute are as follows:

  • Open issues on this repository with suggestions on proposed definition syntax
  • Fork the repository and propose your own definition for a language
  • Share this initiative with your respective communities
  • Offer insight into how your community or company can use this
  • Be honest and tell us what works and what doesn’t

While almost everything is open to modification, we have a few small requirements.

  • The definition format MUST be YAML. YAML was chosen because it allows the appropriate data structures, is both human- and machine-readable and allows comments
  • Respect the goals of minimalism and composition defined above
  • This is based on Ubuntu 12.04 amd64 (for now) as the primary use case is for inclusion in the Sputnik laptop

We will be soliciting feedback for the next three weeks so please get us your thoughts by December 3.

What about the cloud tool?

We haven’t forgotten about the cloud tool, which allows you to deploy your applications to the cloud.  While you can currently use Linux containers and JuJu to get your apps into the clouds, we are working on a version that will provide even greater automation.  This will be phase II after we get the profile tool a bit further along, stay tuned!

But wait, there’s more…

If you’re interested in Project Sputnik you’ll want to watch this blog which will be bringing some more news in the not too distant future. :)

Extra-credit reading

Pau for now…


Talking to the Docker Dudes

September 12, 2013

This morning a group of us here at Dell met with Ben Golub, Jerome Petazzoni and Nick Stinemates of dotCloud, the company behind the wildly popular open source project, Docker, “the Linux container engine.”  They came to sample the great barbecue and to chat about how Docker might potentially work with Project Sputnik, the Crowbar Project and a few other efforts.

Docker, which went live in March already has 150 contributors, 60,000+ downloads and 1000s of applications containerized and uploaded to their registry.   Given the fact that the company only has 18 employees, quite a bit of this work has been done by the passionate community that has formed in the first six months.

Overview and Tech talk

I did two interviews with the gents from Docker, a higher level overview with Ben their CEO and a more technical talk with SRE manager Jerome and Nick, their sales and deployment engineer.  Enjoy!

Some of the ground Ben covers:

  • What is Docker?
  • How it developed out of dotCloud’s PaaS efforts
  • How Ben got involved with the project and his background
  • What are dotCloud’s plans for Docker and who is integrating with it?

Some of the ground Jerome and Nick cover:

  • How long they’ve been involved and what they focus on
  • How Docker works with LXC and how it might work without LXC
  • Ubuntu is recommended but all you need is AUFS support
  • In next release they plan to offer official support beyond Ubuntu
  • Holy DevOps batman, Docker has something to offer Devs, QA Engineers, Continuos  integration and Sys Ops.

Extra-credit reading

Pau for now…


My O’Reilly Video — Telling the Project Sputnik story

August 29, 2013

While I interviewed a bunch of folks at OSCON, I also got the chance to be on the other end of the camera.  On Thursday of the event I sat down with Meghan Blanchette, editor at O’Reilly media and we talked about Project Sputnik, where it’s been and where it’s going.  Check it out:

Some of the ground I cover:

  • How Sputnik came to be and our biggest challenge
  • The three main components: XPS 13 developer edition, the Profile Tool, the cloud launcher
  • Our recently announced 3-free months on the Joyent Cloud
  • Getting some help from an internal development team

Update re Profile tool help

The internal team that I mentioned in the video is gearing up to get cracking on the profile tool.  The idea is first to gather requirements and user stories and then get jammin’ with design and development sprints.  It looks like after a bunch of false starts we are ready to push this in to high gear.  Look for an update next week.

Extra-credit reading

  • Will Developers Move to Sputnik?  The past, present, and future of Dell’s project – O’Reilly programming
  • Connecting the client to the cloud, The Sputnik Story – Slideshare

Pau for now…


OSCON: Talking OpenShift, RedHat’s Platform as a Service

August 22, 2013

Last but not least in my series of video from last month’s OSCON is an interview I did with Steve Citron-Pousty, Developer Evangelist for Red Hat’s OpenShift PaaS.

Take a listen to what the ever-entertaining Steve CP has to say:

Note: As with my interview with Neil of Inktank, I used Youtube’s feature that is supposed to fix an unsteady camera and the result gives the video a hallucinogenic feel (witness the slightly undulating stairs).

Some of the ground Steve covers:

  • What is OpenShift and Platform as a Service?  How is OpenShift different from other PaaSs?
  • OpenShift is “polyglottal:” it supports PHP, Perl, Python, Ruby, Node js and Java (with Java you get JBoss and Tomcat).  It also supports MySQL, Postgres and MongoDB right out of the box.
  • How they work with APIs and how APIs allow devs to create “situational apps.”
  • Steve’s Crystal Ball time:  in 3-5 years all developers will be using a PaaS (witness their wins with Ebay/PayPal, Accenture and DoD) + Git + a NoSQL data store.

Reference —  The rest of my OSCON interviews:

 Extra-credit reading

  • Blog:  Krishnan Subramanian: Making the Move to OpenShift
  • ZDnet: Red Hat opens OpenShift PaaS cloud for business

Pau for now…


OSCON: AppDynamics and application performance management

August 15, 2013

Today’s OSCON interview takes us into the land of application performance modeling and features Dustin Whittle, Technical Evangelist at AppDynamics.   AppDynamics provides performance management for Java, .Net and PHP applications.  Check out what Dustin has to say about the wild and wacky world of APM:

Some of the ground Dustin covers

  • What does AppDynamics do?  Spoiler alert: It helps you figure out what “healthy” looks like for your application and gives you line of code visibility into your production app from the client to multiple tiers of your server and then down into the database.
  • Who looks at/uses the data AppDynamics generates?
  • How does the cloud change application development?  And what about those “noisey neighbors”?
  • APIs, SDKs and the recently launched AppDynamics X.

Tune in next time to see the next in my OSCON interview series.  Still left are RedHat’s OpenShift and Puppet.

Extra-credit reading


OSCON: Neil Levine of Inktank, sponsor of Ceph

August 12, 2013

The next in my series of interviews from last month’s OSCON features the ever affable Neil Levine of Inktank.   Neil, who has been with the company nearly a year, heads up product management and we talked about Ceph, the company and where its going.

Warning:  I used Youtube’s feature that is supposed to fix shaking and the result gives the video a hallucinogenic feel (Timothy Leary would approve).

Some of the ground that Neil covers:

  • Inktank as the primary sponsor of Ceph, a scale-out open source software defined storage solution
  • Other similar solutions
  • Selling to cloud devops teams rather than traditional storage teams
  • What’s next?  tiering, deeper integration with OpenStack, pushing out more APIs to build up their dev community etc.

Extra-credit reading/viewing:

  • Press Release:  University of Hawaii at Manoa Deploys Ceph Storage With OpenStack
  • OSCON 2013 – My video playlist: Enstratius, Dasein, Citrix, Mark Hinkle’s keynote, Apigee, Inktank, OpenShift, AppDynamics and Puppet

Pau for now….


OSCON: Mark Hinkle on his keynote + Citrix and Open Source

August 9, 2013

Last month at OSCON, after his keynote “Creating communities of Inclusion,” I caught up with Mark Hinkle, Senior Director of Open Source Solutions at Citrix.  We chatted about about the talk he delivered and what he and Citrix are up to in the world of Open Source.

Some of the ground Mark covers:

  • Getting in ruts in the open source community and how we can refactor
  • Open source is not a zero sum game
  • Open source developers are not always the best at asking for help
  • Mass collaboration like that seen in open source can benefit other industries as well

Some of the ground Mark covers:

Extra-credit reading/viewing:

Pau for now…


OSCON: Dell Multi-cloud manager & Dasein Cloud

August 1, 2013

Last week at OSCON.I grabbed some time with my new Dell co-worker, James Urquhart.  James became a Dell employee not too long ago when Dell acquired Enstratius.   I wanted to hear straight from the horses mouth about the Dell Multi-Cloud manager and the Open Source project, Dasein Cloud.  Here’s what James had to say:

Some of the ground James covers — Dell Multi-cloud Manager

  • James initial impressions of Dell
  • Where does the Multi-cloud manager fit within the Dell cloud portfolio
  • This is used by both developers and ops so how do they position it to each of those audiences.

Some of the ground James covers — Dasein:

  • What is Dasein Cloud and does it work (hint: its more than API mapping)
  • Hows the community and which companies are supporting it
  • What are the project’s goals for the next year

Extra-credit reading

Pau for now….


OSCON: The Project Sputnik story & giveaway

July 29, 2013

Last week, Dell was out in force in Portland, Oregon, representing at OSCON.   We had a booth and gave a few talks.

The talk that Cote and I delivered covered the story behind the Project Sputnik: Connecting the client to the cloud  – The Sputnik Story :

Give it away, give it away, give it away now

In addition to talking about Project Sputnik, we gave away three of the XPS 13 developer edition systems.  Here is the crowd waiting for us to draw the winner at the Dell booth:

The Sputnik drawing at the Dell booth.

The Sputnik drawing at the Dell booth.

And here is the lucky winner, Katrina Prosise, a comp sci student in Portland.

Barton George (Dell), the lucky winner, Joseph George (Dell)

L->R: Barton George (Dell), Katrina Prosise (the lucky winner), Joseph George (Dell)

Stay tuned to this blog over the next week or so as I will be sharing a bunch of the video interviews I conducted while at OSCON.

Extra-credit reading

Pau for now..


Project Sputnik now comes with 3 month free trial on Joyent cloud

July 23, 2013

Joyent logoAs of today we are making available three months of free use of the Joyent Cloud to owners of the XPS 13 developer edition.

The idea behind Project Sputnik, has always been to provide a client-to-cloud platform for developers and today we are offering access to the Joyent Cloud to complete the solution.

What you get and how you get it

With the trial you get either two g3-standard-0.625-kvm instances running Ubuntu for 3 months or one g3-standard-1.75-kvm instance running Ubuntu for 3 months.

We will be setting up a landing page in the next day or two provide elegant access to the Joyent Cloud but for those who want to get started right away you can simply follow the “How do I get Started” instructions below.  We are kicking this off to begin with with 500 free accounts, first come first served.

3 components wJoyentProfile Tool and Cloud Launcher

Also available now are the Project Sputnik Cloud Launcher and profile tool.   The profile tool is designed to provide access to a library of community-created profiles, and to configure and quickly set up development environments and tool chains.  Today we have three sample profiles available: Emacs, Ruby and JavaScript.  Documentation on how to create a profile will be coming soon so stay tuned.

The cloud launcher creates a seamless link from the client to the cloud, to facilitate ongoing development of application environments.  There is a Juju version of the launcher that currently comes with Sputnik and today we are announcing a version that Opscode has developed which uses spiceweasel as its underlying library.  You can check out a demo of it here.  We are also working to connect the chef version of the cloud launcher to the Joyent trial, more to come on that soon.

But wait, there’s more

In related Dell Open Source news we’ve got a whole lot of momentum going on.  You can check out all the news in today’s press release but here are the highlights:

Dell OpenStack-Powered Cloud Solution

Now available with: OpenStack Grizzly support, support for Dell Multi-Cloud Manager (formerly Enstratius), and extended reference architecture support, including the Dell PowerEdge C8000

Dell Cloud Transformation Services

The new consulting services provide assistance with assessing, building, operating and running cloud environments, and enable and accelerate enterprise OpenStack adoption.

Dell Cloudera Hadoop Solution

Now supports the newest version of Cloudera Enterprise. Updates allow customers to perform real-time SQL interactive queries and Hadoop-based batch processing, simplifying the process of querying data in Hadoop environments.

Intel Distribution for Apache Hadoop

Dell has tested and certified the Intel Distribution for Apache Hadoop on Dell PowerEdge servers. Additionally Dell Solution Centers validated the reference architecture and developed a technical whitepaper that simplifies the deployment of Intel Distribution on the Dell platform

 Crowbar

Dell has released RAID and BIOS configuration capabilities to the Crowbar open source community.  SUSE has integrated Crowbar functionality as part of SUSE Cloud to make OpenStack-based private cloud deployments seamless.

Dasein open source project

Dell confirmed its commitment to further develop and support the Dasein open source project, as pioneered by recently acquired Enstratius.

Phew, a whole lot of shaking going on! :-)

===========================================

How do I get Started with Joyent Cloud trial

Step 1:

Open a terminal window press Ctrl + Alt +T

1.1. $ wget https://us-east.manta.joyent.com/jens/public/sputnik.tar

1.2. $ sudo tar -C / -xvf sputnik.tar

Step 2:

Find and run the “Install Joyent Public Could” in the launcher.

Look for the big Joyent LOGO.

Step 3:

Signup for a free trial account on the Joyent Public Cloud.

Open Firefox, goto http://www.joyent.com

Step 4:

Back in the terminal window, type the following command:

$ /usr/share/applications/joyentInstaller.sh

Step 5:

5.1. $ wget -O key-generator.sh https://us-east.manta.joyent.com/jens/public/key-generator.sh

5.2. $ chmod 755 key-generator.sh

5.3. $ ./key-generator.sh (enter you username and password for the jpc)

To source your new environment variables run the following commands

5.4. source ~/.bash_profile

Step 6:

6.1   To Confirm that the Joyent cloud SDK is installed:   $ sdc-listdatacenters

6.2   To confirm that the Joyent Manta SDK is installed:   $ mls /manta/public/sdks

How do I provision a new instance?

Sign in to the Joyent portal and click the  in the upper right portion of the screen. Once you’re there, the tool will walk you through the choice of datacenters, images, and instance types and sizes. You’ll have a chance to review the hourly and monthly cost of the instance, and provide a memorable name for the instance. Once you’ve decided on the type of instance that fits your project, click the  button and the system will ask to confirm your request. The provisioning will start immediately, but may take a few seconds to complete. Clicking on the new named instance will show its assigned public IP address when provisioning is complete. You may SSH into the instance with ssh -l root <ip address>.

How do I stop, resize or reboot instances?

Shutting down, resizing or rebooting your instance can all be executed through the customer portal of Joyent. In addition, we’ve provided a script you can use to perform these steps within your instance.

How do I install software on my instance?

To install or update software on your instance, you’ll need to run commands as either the administrative or root user of your instance. For tips on how to run commands and installation processes, check out the pages on how to install software on your instance.

How do I secure my instance?

Joyent take cloud security very seriously and we have refined many processes to reduce risk and preserve the integrity of data managed in your instance. For a full list of security checks and processes, please visit the security center in our documentation.

How do you manage your instance resource usage?

One of strengths of Joyent is the ability to have full and detailed transparency of every aspect of your infrastructure and application. You can use Cloud Analytics to provide you real-time, diagnostic heatmaps of system behavior. In addition, using these tips here can provide you better control over optimizing the performance of your instance.

How do you manage a database on your instance?

Instances on Joyent can be pre-configured to run a wide range of databases and database services. Joyent supports: MySQL, Percona, Riak, MongoDB, as well as integration to database services from companies like, Cloudant or MongoLab. For big data projects, Joyent is an ideal platform for configuring and running a Hadoop cluster. Check out these guides on how to set up a database or configure your Hadoop cluster.

How do you analyze performance of my instances?

Joyent is the best cloud in the industry for monitoring the entire health of your stack. Using Cloud Analytics, you have the ability to examine, in real-time, the performance characteristics of every level of your application, and network. If you just want to perform server level monitoring, we’ve built integration with leading monitoring tools from New Relic and Nodefly as well.

Where can I learn more?

Our documentation center and engineering blogs are terrific resources for you to learn more about Joyent and participate in the Joyent community. The Dev Center resources we’ve built for you will hopefully get you started on a path to success with Joyent. For additional help or training, please visit:

Pau for now…


Dell and Sputnik go to OSCON

July 18, 2013

Next week, myself, Michael Cote and a whole other bunch of Dell folk will be heading out to Portland for the 15th annual OSCON-ana-polooza.  We will have two talks that you might want to check out:

Cote and I will be giving the first and the second will be lead by Joseph George and James Urquhart.

Sputnik Shirt

And speaking of Project Sputnik, we will be giving away three of our XPS 13 developer editions:  one as a door prize at the OpenStack birthday party, one as a drawing at our booth and one to be given away at James and Joseph’s talk listed above.

We will also have a limited amount of the shirt to the right so stop by the booth.

But wait, there’s more….

To learn firsthand about Dell’s open source solutions be sure to swing by booth #719 where we will have experts on hand to talk to you about our wide array of solutions:

  • OpenStack cloud solutions
  • Hadoop big data solutions
  • Crowbar
  • Project Sputnik (the client to cloud developer platform)
  • Dell Multi-Cloud Manager (the platform formerly known as “Enstratius”)
  • Hyperscale computing systems

Hope to see you there.

Pau for now…


Shuttleworth raves about Dell XPS13 developer edition

May 24, 2013

At the OpenStack summit last month we caught up with Ubuntu and Canonical founder Mark Shuttleworth.

Below is a quick snippet taken from our chat with Mark where he talks about the Dell XPS 13 developer edition aka Project Sputnik.  Mark dubs the system “freakin’ awesome” and the “environment of choice for anyone doing web or cloud development.”  :)

Extra-credit reading

  • Laptop Week Review: The Dell XPS 13 Developers Edition With Ubuntu – TechCrunch
  •  It just works: Dell XPS 13 Developer Edition Linux Ultrabook review – Ars Technica

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