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Top 10 Posts for Q1 2009

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Here are the Top 10 posts for Q1 2009, the numbers of views are in parentheses.

  1. Defragment Ubuntu, Fedora, ext3, ext4 (2247)
  2. Most popular VMWare Virtual Appliances for IT Administrators (2186)
  3. VirtualBox – setup, share, shrink, convert (842)
  4. How to convert a VMWare VMDK to a Microsoft, Xen VHD? (810)
  5. How does shrink with vmware disk manager work? (614)
  6. Most popular VMWare Virtual Appliances for Security (607)
  7. Pre-configured VHD (Virtual Appliance) available from Microsoft (593)
  8. Most popular VMWare Virtual Appliances for Web Apps (558)
  9. Virtual Machine Disk Image Compression (320)
  10. rsync vm, vhd for backup, disaster recovery, ec2 (317)

Defragmentation of virtual disk files remains the dominant theme. There is an equal amount of interest in virtual appliances, particularly those for system administrators.

Search terms:

  • ext4 defrag ubuntu
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  • convert vdi to vhd
  • e4defrag ubuntu
  • virtualbox shrink
  • rsync vmdk
  • wubi
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  • defrag ext3
  • windows 7 virtual appliance
  • defragment ext3
  • vmware appliances
  • defrag ext4
  • xen vhd
  • ubuntu ext4 defrag
  • defrag ext4 ubuntu
  • vmware firewall appliance
  • vmware appliance
  • “vdi to vhd”
  • convert vhd to xen
  • ext3 defrag
  • windows 7 beta vmware virtual appliances
  • defrag fedora
  • ext3 defragmentation
  • virtual appliance windows 7
  • ubuntu defrag
  • hercules load balancer virtual appliance
  • fedora defrag
  • convert vmdk to xen
  • shrink vmware disk

Top 10 referrers for Q1 2009

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Database Virtualization

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I was intrigued by an article on database virtualization that caught my eye early this morning and I wanted to find out what is it all about?

The business driver for database virtualization is the globalized economy where business transaction happen 24 x7 x 365 and business critical data must be available within the network boundary of a corporation, or through the Internet, spanning application downtime and IT maintenance windows.

Data virtualization is defined here as

to view data from disparate sources without knowing or caring where the data actually resides.

Data virtualization obviously leads to database virtualization, which is defined here as

the use of multiple instances of a DBMS, or different DBMS platforms, simultaneously and in a transparent fashion regardless of their physical location

James Kobielus, a Senior Abalyst with Forrester Research is predicting that real time information needs will drive database virtualization

the database as we know it is disappearing into a virtualization fabric of its own. In this emerging paradigm, data will not physically reside anywhere in particular. Instead, it will be transparently persisted, in a growing range of physical and logical formats, to an abstract, seamless grid of interconnected memory and disk resources; and delivered with subsecond delay to consuming applications.

He is making an interesting case that

Real-time is the most exciting new frontier in business intelligence, and virtualization will facilitate low-latency analytics more powerfully than traditional approaches. Database virtualization will enable real-time business intelligence through a policy-driven, latency-agile, distributed-caching memory grid that permeates an infrastructure at all levels.

As this new approach takes hold, it will provide a convergence architecture for diverse approaches to real-time business intelligence, such as trickle-feed extract transform load (ETL), changed-data capture (CDC), event-stream processing and data federation. Traditionally deployed as stovepipe infrastructures, these approaches will become alternative integration patterns in a virtualized information fabric for real-time business intelligence.

The convergence of real-time business-intelligence approaches onto a unified, in-memory, distributed-caching infrastructure may take more than a decade to come to fruition because of the immaturity of the technology; lack of multivendor standards; and spotty, fragmented implementation of its enabling technologies among today’s business-intelligence and data-warehouse vendors. However, all signs point to its inevitability.

Proof Points

Oracle acquired Tangosol in May 2007 and possesses a well-developed in-memory, distributed-caching technology called Coherence

Microsoft annonuced Project Velocity a year later in June 2008:

a distributed cache that allows any type of data (CLR object, XML document, or binary data) to be cached. “Velocity” fuses large numbers of cache nodes in a cluster into a single unified cache and provides transparent access to cache items from any client connected to the cluster.

xkoto was selling GRIDSCALE as a database load balancer in 2006. However, it is very smartly capitalizing on virtualization being a hot segment and has repositioned GRIDSCALE as a database virtualization product. This is a vaiid repositioning not only in the context of the definitions cited above but more importantly due to its validation by noted industry analysts:

Gigaspaces XAP can be used for implementing a distributed cache (in-memory data grid)

GemStone Systems offers the GemFire Enterprise as a data fabric (distributed cache)

Scaleout Software also has a distributed cache offering

Written by paule1s

February 3, 2009 at 5:32 pm

Top 12 referrers over the past 3 months

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Defragment Ubuntu, Fedora, ext3, ext4

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Defragmentation is not necessary on Ubuntu, Fedora, or other Linux implementations when you use the ext3 file system. This is because it is designed to reduce fragmentation, it tries to allocate a free block nearest to others blocks for the same file.

Wikipedia says there are user space tools for defragmenting ext3, however, “A true defragmentation tool does not exist for ext3“.”

There are userspace defragmentation tools like Shake and defrag. Shake works by allocating space for the whole file bolt upright and hoping that it will make the newly allocated file less fragmented. It also tries to write files used at the same time next to each other. Defrag works by copying each file over itself. However they only work if the filesystem is reasonably empty. A true defragmentation tool does not exist for ext3.

How to find out if ext3 file system is fragmented?

ext4 : The next generation of the ext3 filesystem

Reiserfs

Wikipedia says

There are no programs to specifically defragment a ReiserFS file system, although tools have been written to automatically copy the contents of fragmented files hoping that more contiguous blocks of free space can be found. However, Reiser4 will have a repacker that optimizes file fragmentation

Written by paule1s

December 16, 2008 at 4:30 pm