Archive for April, 2011

Avamar Gen 4 Hardware Now Available

April 24, 2011

A new generation of Avamar hardware had recently been released.  Generation 4 of Avamar is now available.  There have been some significant changes with this latest generation.  Perhaps the most obvious change is the new node sizes that are available.  Avamar is now available in 1.3TB, 2.6TB, 3.9TB and 7.8TB nodes.  Nice round numbers right? J  There are a few caveats to this new node sizing however.  RAIN configs (multi-node systems)  can only be built out with the 2.9TB or 7.8TB nodes.  This is a departure from past generations of the Avamar product where RAIN configs could be built with basically any of the nodes that were available.  For mid and large size customers this probably won’t cause any issues but it may make Avamar a bit too pricey for smaller customers to get their foot in the door on Avamar.  The 1.3TB and 2.6TB as well as the two larger nodes can all still be used in single node systems just like before. 

Another change that may affect some is the death of the 1×2 configuration.  This configuration had its place in some solutions where a full RAIN was just too larger and a single node system wasn’t enough.  I don’t see this being a huge problem for most as in my experience we sold very few of this type of configuration.  On top of that, with the release of the larger nodes, a single node system can handle almost 8TB of data.

A few more minor changes that are worth noting:

  • All Gen 4 nodes now use a RAID 1 configuration internally
  • A spare node is no longer required for RAIN configuration (I’d still have one though)
  • The underlying OS is now SLES Linux instead of RHEL Linux
  • Hardware for the 1.3, 2.6 and 3.9TB nodes is the DELL R710
  • Hardware for the 7.8TB node is the DELL R510

For anyone with existing Gen 3 Avamar systems – don’t worry – the 1TB, 2TB and 3.3TB nodes are still available as upgrades for your existing systems.

Thanks for reading!

iPad TV and iPhone Tethering

April 1, 2011

Ok, so it’s been a slow week as far as technology to write about so I guess I’ll fall back to old reliable – the iPad.  This week I discovered a few new (at least for me) apps/features that are worth mentioning.

The first little app I found is from my cable provider, Time Warner Cable – yeah I know, the same bunch that’s been raping us for years.  The most amazing thing is its FREE – 1st time ever TWC did anything for me that they didn’t jack my bill up for – to say the least I was amazed.  The TWCable TV app for iPad allows you to watch your cable TV stations, live, streaming across your broadband connection to your iPad.  Now if you’ve got a family like me this is great news – now I can watch TV in peace just about anywhere.  No more being forced to watch Spongebob, Dora the Explorer, Dancing with the Stars other other goofy, sensitive or generally depressing crap.  Now I can go to the garage, my office or even lock myself in the bathroom and watch important, informative shows like Rambo, Myth Busters and other quality man shows.

Currently there are only a handful of stations available so don’t plan on getting everything you can get on your regular TV but the selection is not too bad.  The quality is very good also, I have yet to experience an jitter or pauses in any of the broadcasts.  So if you are currently pissing away your money to Time Warner Cable like me and also have an iPad – check out this little app.  You can read more about it here:

The second little iPad/iPhone piece of knowledge I came across this week was from AT&T Wireless and hinges around tethering.  Now I know what you’re thinking – Time Warner Cable, AT&T – man this dude is a complete moron!  Yeah I know, but I’m working on it.  🙂  So before I go any further let me go ahead and answer a few statements I know I’ll get:

1-  “Tethering? Man you should just jailbreak your phone and get MiFi and all these cool other illegal apps!” – Yeah, OK, don’t have time for that and can’t run the risk of blowing up my phone.  It’s stable, it works and tethering what never a huge deal to me anyway.

2-   “Dude, you need to drop crappy AT&T and get Verizon – AT&T sucks!”   Ok, so maybe I can’t totally disagree here but at this point I’m off contract with AT&T and I don’t really want to trade one bunch of crooks for another bunch of crooks.  Not to mention AT&T service works perfect at my house and 2 or my offices – so I’m going to just leave good enough alone for now.

After reviewing my wireless bills for the past few months I realized I really wasn’t using as much data as I thought I was – less than 2GB every month with room to spare.  In addition to that I had a $15/month plan for my iPad 3G that I hardly used.  I had the unlimited plan on my phone so switching over to a 4GB data plan that included tethering for the same cost made sense to me.  I made the call and had my plan switched.

I have an iPhone 3GS which, come to find out, after my switch still can not be used as a “wireless” hotspot.  I was a little pissed but looked into it a little further.  You can ONLY do the wireless hotspot with then new iPhone 4 and I wasn’t about to give AT&T another $200 bucks to upgrade and then be handcuffed to them for another 2 yrs just to get the wifi thing.  This being the case I started playing around with both the Bluetooth tethering and USB thethering.  Both work like a champ.  I use the bluetooth to connect my iPad to my phone and the USB for the times I need to connect my laptop.  Now I’ve got basically the same total phone bill – no unlimited data anymore but 2GB is plenty for the phone and an extra 2GB for the iPad and laptop when I travel with which is 1.75GB more than I had with my iPad only plan.  So if you don’t feel like hacking, rooting, breaking your older iPhone but would still like tethering take a closer look at your bill – chances are you don’t need as much “data” as you think and the change may not cost you anything.