The Virtualization Practice
CloudComputing

One of the decisions faced by anyone that wishes to have a cloud presence is what will be moved to the cloud, why, and whether or not there is a service that can be used instead of using virtual machines. Give The Virtualization Practice’s case, we plan on moving our customer facing VMs to the cloud, but what are those machines? The most important are a Web Server with a split LAMP stack, a Mail Server, and DNS.

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The 5/17 Virtualization Security Podcast was an open forum on the Cloud Security Alliance initiatives, specifically the Security, Trust, & Assurance Registry (STAR). Which is “a free, publicly accessible registry that documents the security controls provided by various cloud computing offerings.” The CSA has grown from a grass roots organization to a major player and producer or guidance for security and compliance for clouds.

DesktopVirtualization

A common initiator for moving to virtual desktops is the transition away from existing PCs. To help accommodate this option, Stratodesk have announced the latest version of their NoTouch Desktop. NoTouch is a PC and thin-client re-purposing and management product. As well as supporting Citrix, VMware and Quest, Stratodesk have recently partnered with Desktone to offer easier access to Desktone DaaS desktops. There are a number of optimised Linux-build offerings. Devon IT with VDI Blaster, 2X have their ThinClientServer – there is even a license free option in the recently updated ThinStation. What does Stratodesk’s NoTouch offer, and can Stratodesk assist in a easing deployment of virtualised desktop projects over and above simply deploying thin clients? How, and can, NoTouch integrate or compete with the recent acquisitions of Citirx (Virtual Computer) and VMware (Wanova)?

Microsoft has thrown down the gauntlet right at the feet of Amazon and VMware. With this release Microsoft is bringing to the table its historical strengths in Windows, its on premise position with Windows systems and Windows applications, its ability to operate scale out data centers on a global basis, with a huge commitment to openness and heterogeneity.

DesktopVirtualization

The continued growth of BYOD and the increased maturity of mobile device management and mobile application management tools have forced Cisco to rethink both its enterprise collaboration strategy and its tablet strategy. Cisco came early to the enterprise tablet market announcing the Cius in mid-2010 just 3 months after Apple launched the first generation iPad.

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The 5/3 Virtualization Security Podcast had a very special guest, a teenager. This surprise guest told us about how she and her friends use their smartphones and cloud services such as FaceBook, Twitter, SMS, etc. For the panelist, it gave us a new look at our existing problems; expanding our viewpoint for end-user computing security, cloud security, and expectations of privacy.

StorageNetworking

I recently had the joys of helping deal with an All Paths Down (APD) situation which presented itself when removing a LUN from all the hosts in a cluster. If you do not detach the device first, which will also initiate an unmount operation before you physically unpresent the LUN from the ESX, it causes an APD situation to happen. ADP is when ESXi server no longer has any active paths to a device. When the device is no longer present and you rescan the adapters ESXi server will still retain the information on the removed devices and hostd will continue to try to open a connection to the disk device by issuing different commands like read capacity and read requests to validate the partitions tables are set. If SCSI Sense codes are not returned from a device (you are unable to contact the storage array, or the storage array that does not return the supported “SCSI codes”), then the device is in an All-Paths-Down (APD) state, and the ESXi host continues to send I/O requests until it times out.