Tag Archives: setup

For Sale – Intel Skull Canyon bundle

Hi and thanks for reading.

In dire need of cash atm so my one and only pc setup has to go now

I’ve only ever used it for work and gaming on my tv.

Specs are as follows:

6th generation Intel Core i7-6770HQ processor.
• Intel Iris Pro Graphics.
• Two DDR4 SO-DIMM sockets (up to 32 GB, 2133+ MHz).
• Two M.2 slots with flexible support for a 42 or 80 mm SATA or PCIe SSD.
• Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 8260 and Bluetooth 4.2.
• SD card slot.
• Two USB 3.0 ports (including one charging port).
• Intel HD Audio via Headphone/Microphone jack.
• Consumer infrared sensor.
• Support for user-replaceable third-party lids.
• Kensington lock support.
• Back panel DC power connector (19V).
• Combo speaker/TOSLINK audio output.
• Intel Gigabit LAN.
• Two USB 3.0 ports on the back panel.
• One Mini DisplayPort version 1.2 supporting 8 channel digital audio (7.1 surround sound).
• One Thunderbolt 3 port.
• One full-size HDMI 2.0 display port supporting 8 channel audio (7.1 surround sound).

My pc will come boxed with the following installed:
1x 256gb samsung m.2 ssd installed (will be formatted before sending out, you will need to install your own OS)
1 x 16gb samsung 2400mhz ram installed

Also comes bundled with the following:

1 x samsung 256gb evo plus m.2 nvme still sealed, mint fresh in the box
1 x Official Microsoft Xbox One Controller, light grey with green accents. Good condition with box
1 x Logitech wireless K830 keyboard with trackpad, perfect for sitting on the sofa, this has recently acquired a scratch on the Space Bar but you cant feel it and doesnt effect usage at all. It has backlight for using in the dark, bluetooth and wireless (with dongle, included) options. Can’t find the box for this but will be suitably packed.

I need £500 including postage for all this no offers please.
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For Sale – MacBook Pro 16” 2.6ghz 6 core i7, Radeon 5500, 32GB Ram, 512GB SSD

Hi Everyone, Looking to sell my iMac (if I can get the right offer) as I am contemplating a change my setup, partly driven by what’s going on at the moment and having to work from home (I work on Windows). It was bought new directly from Apple in January 2018 and has been very well looked…

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For Sale – MacBook Pro 16” 2.6ghz 6 core i7, Radeon 5500, 32GB Ram, 512GB SSD

Hi Everyone, Looking to sell my iMac (if I can get the right offer) as I am contemplating a change my setup, partly driven by what’s going on at the moment and having to work from home (I work on Windows). It was bought new directly from Apple in January 2018 and has been very well looked…

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For Sale – iMac (Retina 5K, 27-inch, 2017 – VESA mount edition)

Hi Everyone,

Looking to sell my iMac (if I can get the right offer) as I am contemplating a change my setup, partly driven by what’s going on at the moment and having to work from home (I work on Windows).

It was bought new directly from Apple in January 2018 and has been very well looked after. The specs are as follows:

5K 27-inch display
VESA mount edition (please note that this doesn’t come with the L-shaped stand – but will be compatible with VESA monitor arms, no adaptor required)
4.2GHz Quad i7
500GB SSD
24GB RAM (self-upgraded from 8GB factory install with 2 x 8GB DDR4)

Please note I won’t be including the Windows licence under the Bootcamp partition in the pictures. I’m not selling the trackpad, but I’ll include the Wireless Magic Keyboard 2 (UK with Numpad) for an additional £80 (not selling that on its own). The AppleCare has also expired now, but I’ve got the original box

Thanks,
Ronko Busta
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For Sale – TP-link hubs and wifi setup many items will split…

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I have broken down my wifi setup and looking for the BT home whole home.. so i have the following that will be gathering dust…

TP link Archer VR900 AC1900 witless dual band gigabit VDSL/ADSL modem Router In Black..bought from currys about a year ago.. £60

TP link TD-W9980 N600 witless Dual Band Gigabit VDSL2 Modem Router In Black .. About three years old.. £40

TP-Link AC1350 Wi-Fi Dual Band Gigabit Ceiling Mount Access Point, MU-MIMO, Support 802.3af/at/Passive PoE, Easily Mount to Wall or Ceiling In White.. Bought Amazon in July this year.. £55 SOLD OFF FORUM

TP-link TL-WA801ND 300mps Witless N Access point In White Currys about a year ago… £25 SOLD ZUB

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For Sale – TP-link hubs and wifi setup many items will split…

IMG_0884.JPG

I have broken down my wifi setup and looking for the BT home whole home.. so i have the following that will be gathering dust…

TP link Archer VR900 AC1900 witless dual band gigabit VDSL/ADSL modem Router In Black..bought from currys about a year ago.. £60

TP link TD-W9980 N600 witless Dual Band Gigabit VDSL2 Modem Router In Black .. About three years old.. £40

TP-Link AC1350 Wi-Fi Dual Band Gigabit Ceiling Mount Access Point, MU-MIMO, Support 802.3af/at/Passive PoE, Easily Mount to Wall or Ceiling In White.. Bought Amazon in July this year.. £55 SOLD OFF FORUM

TP-link TL-WA801ND 300mps Witless N Access point In White Currys about a year ago… £25 SOLD ZUB

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For Sale – TP-link hubs and wifi setup many items will split…

519Av4XHBmL._AC_SL1000_.jpgIMG_0884.JPG

I have broken down my wifi setup and looking for the BT home whole home.. so i have the following that will be gathering dust…

TP link Archer VR900 AC1900 witless dual band gigabit VDSL/ADSL modem Router In Black..bought from currys about a year ago.. £65

TP link TD-W9980 N600 witless Dual Band Gigabit VDSL2 Modem Router In Black .. About three years old.. £45

TP-Link AC1350 Wi-Fi Dual Band Gigabit Ceiling Mount Access Point, MU-MIMO, Support 802.3af/at/Passive PoE, Easily Mount to Wall or Ceiling In White.. Bought Amazon in July this year.. £55

TP-link TL-WA801ND 300mps Witless N Access point In White Currys about a year ago… £25 SOLD ZUB

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How to keep VM sprawl in check

During the deployment of virtual environments, the focus is on the design and setup. Rarely are the environments revisited to check if improvements are possible.

Virtualization brought many benefits to data center operations, such as reliability and flexibility. One drawback is it can lead to VM sprawl and the generation of more VMs that contend for a finite amount of resources. VMs are not free; storage and compute have a real capital cost. This cost gets amplified if you look to move these resources into the cloud. It’s up to the administrator to examine the infrastructure resources and make sure these VMs have just what they need because the costs never go away and typically never go down.

Use Excel to dig into resource usage

One of the fundamental tools you need for this isn’t Hyper-V or some virtualization product — it’s Excel. Dashboards are nice, but there are times you need the raw data for more in-depth analysis. Nothing can provide that like Excel.

Most monitoring tools export data to CSV format. You can import this file into Excel for analysis. Shared storage is expensive, so I always like to see a report on drive space. It’s interesting to see what servers consume the most drive space, and where. If you split your servers into a C: for the OS and D: for the data, shouldn’t most of the C: drives use the same amount of space? Outside of your application install, why should the C: drives vary in space? Are admins leaving giant ISOs in the download folder or recycle bin? Or are multiple admins logging on with roaming profiles?

Whatever the reason, runaway C: drives can chew up your primary storage quickly. If it is something simple such as ISO files that should have been removed, keep in mind that this affects your backups as well. You can just buy additional storage in a pinch and, because often many us in IT are on autopilot mode, it’s easy to not give drive space issues a second thought.

Overallocation is not as easy to correct

VM sprawl is one thing but when was the last time you looked at what resources you allocated to those VMs to see what they are actually using? The allocation process is still a little bit of a guess until things get up and running fully. Underallocation is often noticed promptly and corrected quickly, and everything moves forward.

A review process could reveal places that could use an adjustment to drain resources from overallocated VMs to avoid trouble in the future.

Do you ever check for overallocation? Do you ever go back and remove extra CPU cores or RAM? In my experience, no one ever does. If everything runs well, there’s little incentive to make changes.

Some in IT like to gamble and assume everything will run properly most of the time, but it’s less stressful to prepare for some of these unlikely events. Is it possible that a host or two will fail, or that a network issue strikes your data center? You have to be prepared for failure and at a scale that is more than what you might think. We all know things will rarely fail in a way that is favorable to you. A review process could reveal places that could use an adjustment to drain resources from overallocated VMs to avoid trouble in the future.

Look closer at all aspects of VM sprawl to trim costs

Besides the resource aspect what about the licensing cost? With more and more products now allocating by core, overallocation of resources has an instant impact on the application cost to start but it gets worse. It’s the annual maintenance costs that pick at your budget and drain your resources for no gain if you cannot tighten your resource allocation.

One other maintenance item that gets overlooked is reboots. When a majority of Windows Server deployments moved from hardware to virtualization, the runtime typically increased. This increase in stability brought with it an inadvertent problem. Too often, busy IT shops without structured patching and reboot cycles only performed these tasks when a server went offline, which — for better or worse — created a maintenance window.

With virtualization, the servers tend to run for longer stretches and show more unique issues. Memory leaks that might have gone unnoticed before — because they were reset during a reboot — can affect servers in unpredictable ways. Virtualization admins need to be on alert to recognize behaviors that might be out of the norm. If you right-size your VMs, you should have enough resources for them to run normally and still handle the occasional spikes in demand. If you see your VMs requiring more resources than normal, this could point to resource leaks that need to be reset.

Often, the process to get systems online is rushed, leads to VM sprawl and overlooks any attempts at optimization. This can be anything from overallocations to simple cleanup. If this isn’t done, you lose out on ways to make the environment more efficient, losing both performance and capacity. While this all makes sense, it’s important to follow through and actually do it.

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NVMe arrays power Plex MRP cloud

Cloud ERP provider Plex Systems requires a storage setup that can host hundreds of petabytes, while meeting high thresholds for performance and availability. The software-as-a-service provider is in its final year of a storage transition in which it added NVMe arrays for performance and two additional data centers for high availability.

Plex has been running a cloud for 19 years, since its 2001 inception. It started as a multi-tenant application run through a browser for customers.

“We’ve always been a cloud to manufacturers,” said Todd Weeks, group vice president of cloud operations and chief security officer for Plex. “We’ve been 100% cloud-based to our customers.”

“It looks like a public cloud to our customers, but we see it as a private cloud,” he continued. “It’s not running in Azure, AWS or Google. It’s our own managed cloud.”

The Plex private cloud runs mainly on Microsoft software, including SQL Server, and Dell EMC storage, including PowerMax all-NVMe arrays.

Scaling out with two new data centers

Weeks said Plex’s capacity from customer data grows from 15% to 25% per year. He said it has more than 200 PB of data for about 700 customers and 2,300 worldwide manufacturing sites, and it processes more than 7 billion transactions a day with 99.998% availability.

Todd Weeks, group vice president of cloud operations and chief security officer at Plex SystemsTodd Weeks

“With the growth of our company, we wanted a much better scale-out model, which we have with our two additional data centers,” he said. “Then, we said, ‘Besides just scaling out, is there more we can get out of them around availability, reliability and performance?'”

The company, based in Troy, Mich., has storage spread among data centers in Auburn Hills, Mich.; Grand Rapids, Mich.; Denver; and Dallas. The data centers are split into redundant pairs for failover, with primary storage and backup running at all four.

Weeks said Plex has used a variety of storage arrays, including ones from Dell EMC, Hitachi Vantara and NetApp. Plex is in the final year of a three-year process of migrating all its storage to Dell EMC PowerMax 8000 NVMe arrays and VxBlock converged infrastructure that includes VMAX and XtremIO all-flash arrays.

Two data centers have Dell EMC PowerMax, and the other two use Dell EMC VxBlock storage as mirrored pairs. Backup consists of Dell EMC Avamar software and Data Domain disk appliances.

“If we lose one, we fail over to the other,” Weeks said of the redundant data centers.

The performance advantage

Weeks said switching to the new storage infrastructure provided a “dramatic increase in performance,” both for primary and backup data. Backup restores have gone from hours to less than 30 minutes, and read latency has been at least three times faster, he said. Data reduction has also significantly increased, which is crucial with hundreds of petabytes of data under management.

“The big win we noticed was with PowerMax. We were expecting a 3-to-1 compression advantage from Hitachi storage, and we’ve actually seen a 9-to-1 difference,” he said. “That allows us to scale out more efficiently. We’ve bought ourselves a couple of years of extra growth capacity. We always want to stay ahead of our customers’ needs, and our customers are database-heavy. We’re also making sure we’re a couple of years ahead of where we need to be performance-wise.”

Early all-flash arrays

Plex’s introduction to EMC storage came through XtremIO all-flash arrays. While performance was the main benefit of those early all-flash systems, Weeks said, the XtremIO REST API impressed his team.

“Being able to call into [the API] made it much more configurable,” he said. “Our storage engineers said, ‘This makes my job easier.’ It’s much easier than having to script and do everything yourself. It makes it much easier to implement and deploy.”

Weeks said Plex is reluctant to move data into public clouds because of the fees incurred for data transfers. But it does store machine information gathered from the Plex industrial IoT (IIoT) SaaS product on Microsoft Azure.

“We gather plant floor machine information and tie it into our ERP,” he said. “But we don’t use public clouds for archiving or storage.”

Plex’s IT roadmap includes moving to containerized applications, mainly to support the Plex IIoT service.

“We’re looking now at how we can repackage our application,” he said. “We’re just beginning to go in the direction of microservices and containers.”

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