Oct 12

Privacy: it is such a personal thing, Part 1

This is the first in a series of articles that outline the legal position on an individual’s right to privacy with regard to personal data held across the world. There is an implicit assumption that every individual has the right to privacy. In fact, you could say it is a human right. This right to data privacy is being or has been codified into law across the globe. There is only one major exception in the free Western world, and that is the US, where there is no legally backed guarantee to data privacy. Yes, there is the common-law tort of invasion of privacy derived from English law and the 1974 Privacy Act. However, a guaranteed protection of data rights has never been codified into federal statute in the US, whereas more than eighty other countries and independent territories—including the EU; the UK; and the majority of Latin America, the Caribbean, Asia, and large parts of Africa—now have comprehensive data-protection laws.

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Oct 11

Like Cloud and Virtualization, Serverless Computng is still someone Else’s Computer

Today, serverless is all the rage. In the beginning, we had the server. Then along came virtualization, and things were good. We saved money. We could purchase less tin but run more servers. We could easily see the benefits of moving in that direction: lower power requirements, less hardware needing cooling down in our computer rooms. This was an easy sell for engineers and salespeople alike. Techies loved the elegance, and the business types loved the financial savings. The messaging was easily understandable.

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Oct 10

VMware Leaves the Data Protection Market

Back in April, VMware announced the end of life for its vSphere Data Protection (VDP) product. This little nugget was once again hidden in a blog post, in which VMware stated that moving forward after vSphere 6.5, it would be helping to consolidate backup and recovery by realigning its focus on its Storage APIs. Now, before you go into full panic mode, you do not need to worry: the VMware Lifecycle Product Matrix gives the relevant end-of-general-support dates for each version, and 6.1, the latest, is supported until mid-March 2020. You will have to plenty of time to plan your migration if you are using VDP.

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Oct 09

AWS Leads by a furlong, but Azure is Rapidly gaining ground

At the time of this writing (in early April), one of the biggest days in the UK horseracing calendar, Aintree’s Grand National Day, was upcoming. This seemed to me prophetic, as people often state that AWS is the leader in a one-horse race. Historically, yes, it has often appeared to be in a one-horse race, smashing competitors left, right, and center—first humiliating VMware, the godparent of the cloud, by beating it at its own game, then by crushing other, more traditional companies’ cloud aspirations without thought.

Many believed this battle, if not the war, had been well and truly won and that AWS was the victor. It had even clipped the wings of Google.

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Oct 08

Unity – Is not in the cards for Nexsan and EMC

Recalling the 1960s movie David and Goliath, a battle between IT titan Dell EMC and relative minnow Nexsan has been waged in the federal court for the District of Massachusetts over the use of the trademark “Unity.” Both companies market storage arrays branded “Unity.” EMC wrote a cease and desist letter to Nexsan concerning misuse, claiming prior use. However, Nexsan believed that claim to be erroneous, countering that it had filed for the trademark before EMC. It sued the giant for misuse first.

In case number 1:16-cv-10847-WGY in the federal court for the District of Massachusetts, Nexsan’s complaint stated: “EMC has threatened suit unless Nexsan abandons its UNITY trademarks.” Nexsan sought “a declaration that it has priority to, and is not infringing upon, certain trademark rights asserted by EMC Corporation.” The cease and desist order from Dell EMC was an obvious attempt at strong-arm tactics by the storage giant against the smaller company. Dell EMC not only failed to obtain the results it was expecting—this being Nexsan running off scared into the twilight and surrendering its trademark—but also ended up on the wrong arm of a trademark suit.

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Oct 07

RIP Harry Huskey

On April 9, 2017, Harry Huskey died at the age of 101. Many of you will most likely be scratching your heads whilst reading this on your screen—either your phone or tablet, or maybe even your desktop device—and you will most likely be asking, “Who, and why should I care, other than knowing somebody’s loved one has passed?”

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Oct 06

PagerDuty raises $43.8 Million in Series C round

PagerDuty, a provider of application monitoring software, has just brought home to roost a $43.8 million Series C funding round led by new backer Accel, with further funding from Andreessen Horowitz, Bessemer Venture Partners, Baseline Ventures, and a second new backer, Harrison Metal.

PagerDuty swims rather successfully in the crowded pond that is the monitoring industry, where its main competition includes the likes of AppDynamics, BMC (formerly Boundary), New Relic, and OpsGenie.

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Oct 05

VMware announces intention to acquire Wavefront

On April 12, VMware announced its intention to acquire Wavefront, an innovative startup that provides a solution for monitoring applications in the cloud at scale. Wavefront offers real-time analytics, enterprise-grade frameworks, intelligent alerting, and a comprehensive API. Among its customers are some of the darlings of the SaaS marketspace: Box, Lyft, Groupon, and Yammer, among others.

There is no indication of the costs that are involved. According to the VMware press release, the deal is expected to close in calendar Q2 2017 and will not have a material impact on its financial year 2018.

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Oct 04

Has VMware effectively killed the VCDX program?

I noticed a tweet recently by a person I respect, Craig Kilborn. Craig had just written a blog post about why he was pleased that he didn’t pass the defense part of the VCDX. The arguments he made in the article were cogent, and I found myself agreeing with them. They aligned with my view of the worth of the VCDX certification to me personally.

I have not traveled down the VCDX path as far as Craig has, but I find myself pondering the value of the certification today. There is no doubt that the journey towards the certification is a valid one and, more importantly, a valuable learning experience. All those I have spoken to who have traveled the path, whether they gained their number or not, have grown as IT professionals.

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Oct 02

VMware rolls back its boarders with a flash sale of vCloud Air

In a not-too-unexpected move, VMware has announced the sale of its Public Cloud division. It is well-known that vCloud Air has been struggling. In a deal expected to close in Q2 2017 they have offloaded it to French Cloud hosting provider OVH. OVH defines itself as one of the largest cloud service providers in the world, with 1 million customers and 260,000 servers deployed, so roughly a quarter of a server per customer. I am pretty sure that Oracle, AWS, Google, and Azure are bigger, but there you go. Marketing at its best — OVH, one of the largest cloud service providers in the world.

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