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Monthly Archives: July 2012

Spring and RabbitMQ – Behind India’s 1.2 Billion Person Biometric Database

Aadhaar was conceived as a way to provide a unique, online, portable identity so that every single resident of India can access and benefit from government and private services. The Aadhaar project has received coverage from all possible media – television, press, articles, debates, and the Internet. It is Screen shot 2012-07-30 at 5.53.12 PM seen as audacious use of technology, albeit for a social cause. UIDAI, the authority responsible for issuing Aadhaar numbers, has published white-papers, data, and newsletters on progress of the initiative.A common question to the UIDAI technology team in conferences, events and over coffee is – what technologies power this important nation-wide initiative? In this blog post, we wanted to give a sense of several significant technologies and approaches.

Fundamental Principles

While the deployment footprint of the systems has grown from half-a-dozen machines to a few thousand CPU cores processing millions of Aadhaar related transactions, the fundamental principles have remained the same:

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Who Moved My App? VMware’s “Cheese-Aware” Application Management

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Learn more about vFabric Application Performance Manager:
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Download an evaluation copy:
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Did you ever read the book “Who moved my cheese?” It was a 5-year New York Times Bestseller by Dr. Spencer Johnson.

The book speaks of how people react to change and offers several approaches to coping with change. The author, very eloquently, identifies the challenges of reacting and adapting to various changes in our lives.

In the book, Dr. Johnson helps us to understand that as we mature, we come to realize that change is constant: people change, schedules change, jobs change, friends change, and more. We are, for the most part, able to intellectually and emotionally cope and continue moving forward.

I can’t say that much about software. When something changes in software behavior, it will usually not have the capacity to cope and overcome, but remain in a fragile state until there is some human intervention.

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VMware vFabric GemFire Discussion Board Moving

We’re excited to announce that on July 27, 2012, VMware will be migrating the VMware™ vFabric™ GemFire® discussion board from the current gemstone.com site to the communities site on vmware.com. Once completed, essential vFabric GemFire elements including software downloads, documentation, resources and discussions will be consolidated onto vmware.com to serve you better.

vFabric GemFire forum topics on the move:

From
GemStone Forums

To
VMware vFabric Communities

VMware will migrate all the discussion topics to the new vFabric GemFire community. Other materials on the current GemFire community site will be transitioned at a later date. 

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The engineering story behind vFabric Application Director: Enabling any app anywhere

Recently, VMware announced vFabric Application Director product to help deploy applications on public and private clouds. I have had the privilege of leading the engineering team that delivered this product, and am proud that we were able to build a tool that is truly open to the cloud, including all the application types and deployment locations that companies will want to service. Application Director meets not only current workload requirements that run within VMs, but is also open to enable future application stacks like Django, Ruby on Rails, NodeJS as well as noSQL and SQL databases. Likewise, it is open to deploy a variety of apps on variety of platforms—both public and private, including popular locations such as amazon and openstack. Most developers will recognize that building a product that is so flexible is not a trivial matter. However, we felt that not locking users into a single app stack or cloud environments was critical in order to not hinder application development. Giving developers the freedom of choice for application stacks while helping them keep their applications abstracted enough to land into the right production ready environments has been our guiding principal.

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vFabric Web Server Improves Manageability with mod_bmx and More

Apache-featherReleased in May as part of the VMware vFabric Suite 5.1, the latest version of VMware vFabric Web Server, VMware’s commercial web server (based on the popular Apache HTTP Server project), includes a number of improvements in the areas of manageability and security.  July heralds an incremental update version 5.1.1, with enhancements to security, mod_ssl and other components.

There are a number of improvements in the area of manageability, including RPMs for Linux in addition to traditional self-extracting zip packages, which support rollback and parallel installation. A number of new platforms are supported in addition to Windows and Linux, most notably Solaris on both Intel/AMD and Sparc hardware.

Improving Manageability with mod_bmx

The most interesting new development for vFabric Web Server is that it is the first Apache HTTPD-based web server shipped with  mod_bmx to support monitoring and management.

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vFabric tc Server v2.8.0 accepted into Common Criteria Evaluation and Certification Scheme

The Certification Body for the Canadian Common Criteria Evaluation and Certification Scheme (CCCS) has
officially accepted VMware vFabric tc Server v2.8.0 into its certification program and are officially listed as "in evaluation" at the CCCS "Products in Evaluation" page. Screen shot 2012-07-10 at 5.23.39 PM

The EAL2+ certification is valid and accepted by governments in Canada, the US, UK, Netherlands, Germany and France. Several other VMware products have also gone through this process and are listed at this VMware Certifications web page

In addition, VMware vShield 5.0 has also begun evaluation to level EAL 4+.

Enhance root cause analysis capabilities by overlaying AppInsight with Hyperic Data

Join the APM Beta

 

VMware is looking for customers
interested in the beta program for the next release of vFabric Application Performance Management (APM).

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vFabric Application Performance Manager (APM) provides comprehensive application monitoring capabilities. APM installs with two components: vFabric AppInsight for Transaction and Code level monitoring (byte code instrumentation is courtesy of Spring Insight) and vFabric Hyperic for middleware and OS monitoring. Together, these products work to not only provide an early warning system for building performance problems, but they also provide critical perspectives necessary for Root Cause Analysis (RCA). In this post, we will discuss how using Hyperic data inside AppInsight will help speed RCA.

Analyzing Performance Problems

In production, triaging performance issues requires correlating multiple events from multiple sources. In many cases, a performance problem or an error visible at the application or user transaction level is caused by an underlying middleware or resource problem. vFabric APM lets the user view and correlate multiple metrics from various sources ‫(middleware, network and code level) in order to pinpoint Root Cause Analysis and reduce Mean Time To Resolution (MTTR).

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Virtualization for Oracle DBs – Some cut TCO by 50%

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Register for the Webcast "Virtualize and Manage Oracle Databases with VMware vFabric Data Director"

Date: Thursday, July 26, 2012 @ 9:00 AM PDT

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One of the biggest IT megatrends of the new millennium has been virtualization.  As of 2011:

While that sounds (and is) impressive, it will draw little more than a yawn from most of many of my DBA and ETL friends.  “Virtualization is great and all”, they say, “but we do real work.  You know, we work with Oracle and with data.” 

And, therein lies the rub.  

Database Virtualization Needs

If there is any part of enterprise that needs to increase flexibility and reduce cost, it is on the data side of IT.  For example, database operations suffer from: 

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Migrating Applications from Websphere or Weblogic to vFabric TC Server – July 24th at 2pm ET

EMC Consulting is hosting a customer facing webinar covering heavyweight to tcServer migration. The objective is to drive vFabric product and joint service revenue.

Migrating Java applications from Websphere or Weblogic to vFabric tc Server helps IT to reduce the cost and complexity of applications. Bruce Snyder will share best practices and use real life examples to explain how to transform your applications quickly and easily.  Learn More/Register Now

 

Doing Agile? 10 Features of an Agile App Platform (Part 1)

Using an “agile process” is listed as one of the Top 10 Reasons for Project Success[1]. So, it’s not surprising that everyone wants to be agile these days. There are numerous books and blogs available that explain how to adopt agile practices from a people and process perspective, but what about technology?

Do the decisions we make when choosing our “build, run and manage” application platform affect our ability to adopt agile practices?

To answer this question, we’ve looked at the principles behind the agile manifesto[2] and identified two core themes to help characterize the agile features of application platforms.

The 2 Key Agile Themes

Rocket-icon-80x80 Theme 1 – Delivery Efficiency

Adopting agile practices means we need to deliver working software fast and often and in a sustainable way i.e. we need to choose application services that streamline the software delivery cycle.

Chameleon_80x80 Theme 2 – Adaptable Designs

Adopting agile practices means we need to create simple architectures that can support the fast changing business requirements we see emerging in today’s dynamic markets i.e. we need to choose a application services that encourage developers to create simple and adaptable designs.

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