Tag Archives: system

For Sale – i4770k 4.4 Overclocked Bundle cpu/mobo/ram Noctua D14

Having just upgraded my system to Ryzen I am selling the following, this was bought 6 years ago direct from OCUK as an overclocked bundle and has run all of it’s life at 4.4Ghz on the noctua cooler. The only change was an upgrade I recently did to 16gb ram which cost me £113 brand new in January. would like to sell as a bundle preferably but will split.

I have set it back to stock but saved the OC Profile in the bios.

I74770K –£95
MSI Z87-G45 Gaming mobo –£45
16GB (2 x 8GB) HyperX Savage HX318C9SRK2/16 16 GB 1866 MHz DDR3 CL9 DIMM (Kit of 2) XMP, Red – £45

Noctua D14 Cooler (Brand new AM4 adapter included) only have socket LGA 1150 fittings and AM4 – £35

BUNDLE PRICE £200 inc.

Also my Old Ram before I upgraded it to 16gb:

8GB (2x4GB) Corsair Vengeance Pro DDR3 1866MHZ CMY8GX3M2A1866C9R £20

Prices inclusive of postage

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For Sale – HP Proliant Microserver N54L AMD Turion II Dual Core 2.2GHz Barebones

I have swapped out my hard drives and ram into another unit so this system is now surplus to requirements.
Yours for £90 delivered
IMG_20191014_135336.jpgIMG_20191014_135347.jpgIMG_20191014_135426__01.jpg
Location
Shrewsbury
Price and currency
£90
Delivery
Courier
Prefer goods collected?
I have no preference
Advertised elsewhere?
Advertised elsewhere
Payment method
Bank Transfer, Paypal Friends and Family

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Wanted – Simple ATX Tower Case

I need a basic ‘home’ for my current Q8800 based system as I’m upgrading to an i5 motherboard and bits.

Looking for an old gaming tower or workstation, needs to support 120mm fan to the rear as I use a Corsair H50 for CPU cooling. Just a shell, no need for components but if it would come with a basic CD-Rom that would be nice

Ideally in or around Bristol and as cheap as possible

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Implement automated employee onboarding with PowerShell

One of those most common tasks help desk technicians and system administrators handle is provisioning all the resources to onboard new employees.

Depending on the organization, these tasks may include creating Active Directory user accounts, creating home folders, provisioning new Office 365 mailboxes and setting up a VoIP extension in the phone system. With a little PowerShell coding, you can put together an automated employee onboarding script that does a majority of this work in little to no time.

To automate this process, it’s essential to define all the tasks. Many companies have a document that outlines the steps to onboard a new employee, such as the following:

  • create an Active Directory user account;
  • create a user folder on a file share; and
  • assign a mobile device.

When building a PowerShell script, start by researching if the basics required for automation are available. For example, does the system you’re using to assign a mobile device have an API? If not, then it can’t be completely automated. Rather than bypass this step, you can still add something to your script that sends an email to the appropriate person to complete the setup.

For other tasks that PowerShell can automate, you can start by scaffolding out some code in your script editor.

Build the framework for the script

Start by adding some essential functions to encapsulate each task. The following code is an example of build functions for each of the tasks we want to automate.

param(
[Parameter()]
[ValidateNotNullOrEmpty()]
[string]$CsvFilePath
)

function New-CompanyAdUser {
[CmdletBinding()]
param
(

)

}

function New-CompanyUserFolder {
[CmdletBinding()]
param
(

)

}

function Register-CompanyMobileDevice {
[CmdletBinding()]
param
(

)

}

function Read-Employee {
[CmdletBinding()]
param
(

)

}

This isn’t our final code. This is just a brainstorming exercise.

Add the code to receive input

Notice the param block at the top and the Read-Employee function. This function receives any type of input, such as a CSV file or database. When we create a function, it’s easy to modify the code if the method changes.

For now, we are using a CSV file to make the Read-Employee script below. By default, this function takes the CSV file path when the script runs.

function Read-Employee {
[CmdletBinding()]
param
(
[Parameter()]
[ValidateNotNullOrEmpty()]
[string]$CsvFilePath = $CsvFilePath
)

Import-Csv -Path $CsvFilePath

}

Add a Read-Employee reference below this function.

We have a CSV file from human resources that looks like this:

FirstName,LastName,Department
Adam,Bertram,Accounting
Joe,Jones,HR

We’ll give the script a name New-Employee.ps1 with the CsvFilePath parameter.

./New-Employee.ps1 -CsvFilePath './Employees.csv'

Developing the functions

Next, fill in the other functions. This is just an example but should give you a good idea of how you could build your code for the specifics your automated employee onboarding script should have. For more information on the creation of the New-CompanyAdUser function, you can find more information at this blog post.

param(
[Parameter()]
[ValidateNotNullOrEmpty()]
[string]$CsvFilePath
)

function New-CompanyAdUser {
[CmdletBinding()]
param
(
[Parameter(Mandatory)]
[ValidateNotNullOrEmpty()]
[pscustomobject]$EmployeeRecord
)

## Generate a random password
$password = [System.Web.Security.Membership]::GeneratePassword((Get-Random -Minimum 20 -Maximum 32), 3)
$secPw = ConvertTo-SecureString -String $password -AsPlainText -Force

## Generate a first initial/last name username
$userName = "$($EmployeeRecord.FirstName.Substring(0,1))$($EmployeeRecord.LastName))"

## Create the user
$NewUserParameters = @{
GivenName = $EmployeeRecord.FirstName
Surname = $EmployeeRecord.LastName
Name = $userName
AccountPassword = $secPw
}
New-AdUser @NewUserParameters

## Add the user to the department group
Add-AdGroupMember -Identity $EmployeeRecord.Department -Members $userName
}

function New-CompanyUserFolder {
[CmdletBinding()]
param
(
[Parameter(Mandatory)]
[ValidateNotNullOrEmpty()]
[pscustomobject]$EmployeeRecord
)

$fileServer = 'FS1'

$null = New-Item -Path "\\$fileServer\Users\$($EmployeeRecord.FirstName)$($EmployeeRecord.LastName)" -ItemType Directory

}

function Register-CompanyMobileDevice {
[CmdletBinding()]
param
(
[Parameter(Mandatory)]
[ValidateNotNullOrEmpty()]
[pscustomobject]$EmployeeRecord
)

## Send an email for now. If we ever can automate this, we'll do it here.
$sendMailParams = @{
'From' = '[email protected]'
'To' = '[email protected]'
'Subject' = 'A new mobile device needs to be registered'
'Body' = "Employee: $($EmployeeRecord.FirstName) $($EmployeeRecord.LastName)"
'SMTPServer' = 'smtpserver.something.local'
'SMTPPort' = '587'
}

Send-MailMessage @sendMailParams

}

function Read-Employee {
[CmdletBinding()]
param
(
[Parameter()]
[ValidateNotNullOrEmpty()]
[string]$CsvFilePath = $CsvFilePath
)

Import-Csv -Path $CsvFilePath

}

Read-Employee

Calling the functions

Once you build the functions, pass each of the employee records returned from Read-Employee to each function, as shown below.

$functions = 'New-CompanyAdUser','New-CompanyUserFolder','Register-CompanyMobileDevice'
foreach ($employee in (Read-Employee)) {
foreach ($function in $functions) {
& $function -EmployeeRecord $employee
}
}

By standardizing the function parameters to have a single parameter EmployeeRecord which coincides to a row in the CSV file, you can define the functions you want to call in an array and loop over each of them.

Click here to download the code used in this article on GitHub.

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Zoho adds new Zoho One features, management application

Zoho has released its latest version of Zoho One, an operating system designed to run all aspects of a business within one platform. This generation has three new services, one new application and updates to several existing features.

Updates to Zoho One features include adding Zoho’s telephony platform to Zoho One as well as single sign-on services, extending app management and provisioning capabilities. Businesses workflow management application Orchestly is another addition, as are improved Zoho Sign features and more support for users.

New application

Orchestly is the newest application added to Zoho One. It has a drag-and-drop interface in an effort to enable managers with no coding skills to define processes. Orchestly lets managers and admins automate and run their regular workflow, including cross-departmental tasks such as purchase approvals, content publishing, asset managing and onboarding.

According to Zoho One, the idea behind Orchestly is to create workflows and automation when processes involve more than one department.

New services

PhoneBridge: Zoho has added its telephony platform PhoneBridge to the operating system, which integrates more than 50 telephony vendors on one side, and several Zoho applications on the other side. PhoneBridge enables telephony in Zoho apps like CRM and Recruit. It also provides contextual information for all incoming calls and lets customers make calls from Zoho apps.

Single sign-on: Single sign-on was also added to Zoho One, which enables customers to integrate any third-party applications onto their Zoho account. It also supports about 50 third-party applications and is scalable for midsize to large businesses. Additionally, Zoho One admins can enforce YubiKey authentication as an added factor for security.

App management and provisioning: Zoho has extended provisioning to custom apps created through Zoho Creator, as well as to external apps available through Zoho Marketplace. They can be provisioned individually to users or as groups with custom criteria. There is also a new Admin Panel with dashboards and reports to enable admins to monitor user activity and app usage. Admins also get reports on user management, sign-in activity, app usage and account security.

The analytics dashboard shows eight full charts of statistics for topics such as sales and receivables, customer analytics, closed revenue and sales overview.
The analytics dashboard shows a variety of data for users.

Service updates

Other improved Zoho One features include an additional level of verification in Zoho Sign by adopting blockchain-based timestamping through Ethereum. When documents are signed using Zoho Sign, an Ethereum transaction will happen in the background, and the hash of the signed document will be added to the transaction note, providing an additional digital signature.

Additional updates includes free concierge service, in which potential customers can speak with the Zoho team to see how the service could potentially benefit their business.

Zoho also added Jumpstart for Zoho One to help customers through their initial implementation. All customers are given support, but now enterprise customers can request premium support.

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Arrcus upgrades ArcOS to support Jericho2-based routers

Arrcus has introduced a version of its ArcOS network operating system that supports Broadcom’s StrataDNX Jericho2 system-on-a-chip for switches and routers. As a result, ArcOS supports Jericho2-based commodity hardware for hyperscale cloud, edge and 5G networks.

Key features supported by ArcOS when used with Jericho2 include the following:

  • network speeds up to 10 Tbps switching capacity, which is five times more than the previous generation;
  • a fourfold increase in port density per chip;
  • up to 2.6 million IPv4 routes on chip;
  • real-time flow visibility at scale;
  • support for IPv4, IPv6, MPLS and segment routing forwarding;
  • standards-based BGP Flowspec;
  • visibility into access control lists and routes to help with traffic distribution; and
  • selectable scale profiles.

In January, Arrcus introduced an ArcOS upgrade that supported 400 Gigabit Ethernet white box switches powered by Broadcom’s StrataXGS Tomahawk 3 chipset. Hardware available with the ArcOS upgrade included 400 GbE and 100 GbE switches from Celestica and Edgecore.  

Arrcus competitors include Pluribus Networks, which in June debuted a no-frills edge router for co-location and service providers. Pluribus is marketing its Freedom Series 9532C-XL-R edge as a more cost-effective option to a traditional router.

Another competitor, Cumulus Networks, recently revamped its data center tool set by adding a graphical dashboard. Cumulus offers two core networking software products: Cumulus Linux and Cumulus NetQ.

Arrcus also launched ArcIQ, an analytics platform that uses artificial intelligence in an effort to provide real-time visibility, control and security. ArcIQ detects anything unusual and shows corrective actions to create more uptime.

Additionally, Arrcus has raised another $30 million in Series B funding, bringing the total capital raised to $49 million. The funding enables Arrcus to expand its operations and reach of ArcOS.

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8×8 launches small-business phone system 8×8 Express

8×8 Inc. has launched 8×8 Express, a business phone system designed specifically for smaller businesses that don’t yet have an IT staff.

8×8 Express does not require implementation services, and the vendor claimed online setup takes minutes. 8×8 Express gives users unlimited calling to the United States and Canada; HD video conferencing; business messaging, including text messaging and group chats; and intelligent call routing. All features are available on desktop and mobile for both iOS and Android.

Additionally, 8×8 Express includes the recently released 8×8 Meetings platform. This enables teams to collaborate with HD video conferencing with screen sharing. The Meetings platform is accessible through the same mobile and desktop apps that are used for calling and texting. Collaborators can join meetings from browsers without downloading software. 8×8 Meetings is in early access now for new 8×8 Express and X Series customers on X2 packages and above.

Other features of 8×8 Express include the following:

  • call forwarding, auto attendant and ring groups;
  • voicemail;
  • moving existing businesses’ numbers to 8×8;
  • HD voice and video;
  • compatibility with multiple Poly desk and conference phones;
  • integration with Office 365, Outlook Calendar and Google Calendar; and
  • self-administered management tool.

8×8 Express comes on the heels of a few other small-business phone system launches in recent months.

In May, Google launched CallJoy, a phone service for small businesses that gives them a local phone number and provides customer service options. A CallJoy agent can be customized to provide information to customers and block spam calls.

Earlier in July, LogMeIn Inc. launched Grasshopper Connect as a unified communications product designed for small businesses. Grasshopper Connect combines multiple forms of business communication into one inbox and enables small-business owners to create a dedicated business phone number through an existing phone.

8×8 Express is available now in the U.S. and Canada starting at $12 per person, per month.

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IBM battling to change perception of Cognos Analytics BI platform

While IBM’s traditionally popular Cognos Analytics BI suite remains a powerful system, some say it’s not for everyone anymore.

The business intelligence platform was viewed for decades as a leading product, one that met the needs of data analysts well. But as analytics went mainstream, the need for trained data scientists to deploy analytics software lessened, and everyday users became more versed in the ways of BI, views of IBM’s analytics technology changed.

Now, however, IBM is fighting back.

On Thursday, addressing concerns that led to an impression among some that the Cognos Analytics on Cloud platform is behind the times, IBM released Cognos Analytics version 11.1.3. The latest rollout, which according to IBM is designed to give small and medium-sized businesses better access to IBM’s BI tools, targets pricing and ease of use.

It was in 2015, when IBM transitioned Cognos from version 10 to version 11, that IBM first began addressing its image among some as being good for large enterprises but not user-friendly for everyone.

“We released 11.0 in 2015 and spent a lot of time on the road at conferences banging the drum that this is not your grandfather’s Cognos, that this is the next iteration,” said Kevin McFaul, senior product manager of business analytics at IBM. “The capabilities are still there, but it was enhanced to target the new line of business users. Our competition went to market on ‘Cognos is too complex’ and we’ve done a lot of work to try and correct that perception.”

IBM’s release of Cognos Analytics version 11.1.3 comes amid what analysts view as a challenging time for the Cognos Analytics BI platform.

Analysts said that the suite’s technological capabilities remain among the most effective, yet despite IBM’s best efforts it’s a product viewed as primarily aimed at enterprises with budget to spend and IT specialists to spare. It is not seen as a platform that fits the needs of the new wave of data users, citizen data scientists.

IBM Cognos market activity by the year

Gartner’s proprietary “Magic Quadrant” ranking system in February 2019 dropped IBM to “Niche Player” after ranking it a “Visionary” the previous three years.

A decade ago in 2009, and up through 2015, Gartner labeled IBM as a “Leader.”

“IBM was a leader in traditional BI, but it took them a long time to respond to [changes in the market],” said Rita Sallam, a VP analyst at Gartner. “Cognos lost a lot of traction, but they’ve made promising investments in augmented intelligence, which we see as the next phase of BI.”

“They’ve now introduced a promising new version of the product,” she added.

The Cognos Analytics BI platform has many of the same capabilities as other advanced analytics suites, including natural language processing (the old Watson analytics system was recently rolled into Cognos), data visualization and multi-cloud connectivity. And IBM continues to add features through updates, introducing a host of AI-powered tools in the fall of 2018 with IBM Cognos 11.1 and now addressing pricing and ease of use in 11.1.3.

Even before the latest update, the Cognos Analytics BI platform remained robust for those who were already IBM customers.

But there’s also been a downside to the Cognos Analytics BI story, one analyst said has made it difficult for IBM to win new customers.

“Historically, it’s been an IT-centric implementation,” said Rick Sherman, founder of Athena IT Solutions in Maynard, Mass. “It can manage metadata and share, but there are lots of parts to the architecture to make it effective.

“You’ll look elsewhere if you don’t have the skills,” he continued.

Another potential drawback has been IBM’s perceived relatively slow pace of innovation.

While Microsoft provides monthly updates to Power BI, and vendors such as MicroStrategy are starting to embed analytics into applications beyond their traditional BI platforms, IBM’s most recent additions — even the ones unveiled this week — are ones many of their competitors already possess.

“It has most of the features that are required, but the competition went ahead more than Cognos,” said Boris Evelson, vice president and principal analyst at Forrester Research. “Its strength is that it’s delivering analytics at scale, and it’s introducing some of the more advanced features — it has a conversational user interface, and the advanced analytics it’s introduced is a strength.”

“But a weakness is the pace of innovation is not as fast as its competitors,” he said.

One of the specific issues that may have held the Cognos Analytics BI platform back is that IBM invested heavily in Watson before the company abandoned Watson analytics as a stand-alone product and added it to the Cognos Analytics BI suite.

“Watson set them back a couple of years — Watson analytics didn’t have the completeness Cognos had,” said Doug Henschen, analyst at Constellation Research. “The hope is that they catch up.”

Henschen, however, noted that IBM now is giving the Cognos Analytics BI platform more attention, which could help reverse the sense that IBM is lagging in the analytics sphere.

They’ve updated their story significantly in the last 18 months. There are signs that they’re getting hip to the market demands of the day to get customers what they want and where they want it.
Doug HenschenAnalyst, Constellation Research

“They’ve updated their story significantly in the last 18 months,” Henchen said. “There are signs that they’re getting hip to the market demands of the day to get customers what they want and where they want it.”

The new release appears to be further evidence of IBM’s commitment to the Cognos Analytics BI platform, and to making it a suite not only for giant enterprise but also for the citizen data scientist.

“It was designed around how to empower end users and help them understand their data,” McFaul said.

Pricing for Cognos Analytics version 11.1.3 is in three tiers, beginning at $15 per user, per month for the Standard Edition, $35 per user, per month for the Plus Edition, and $70 per user, per month for the Premium Edition. All the versions are available on the IBM Marketplace and can be purchased directly from the site and used via the cloud, IBM said.

Whether the market takes notice of the changes, however, and whether IBM can regain what it has lost in recent years, remains to be seen.

A decade ago, IBM had a 14.6% market share of vendor revenues, according to Gartner. By 2017, though statistics vary slightly among sources and the BI software market has become more fragmented in general over time, IBM’s market share had dropped.

“Their challenges don’t stem from the product,” Sallam said. “It’s their go-to-market strategy, how to sell beyond their installed base, how to attract new buyers. They’ve put in place a plan to do that, but we’ll see how well they execute on those plans.”

“Hearts are harder to change than the product,” she said.

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New Contentful CMS targets content delivery for retailers

Contentful has launched a content infrastructure system to drive online sales by enabling more content management across channels for retailers.

Like a headless content management system, the Contentful CMS allows users to publish and update content across all digital platforms at once, but at an enterprise-grade scale. The vendor claimed content infrastructure enables retailers to repurpose existing content, improve impact and deliver marketing messages to target audiences.

Headless CMS enables content creation and sharing across multiple channels with one action by removing the head — or presentation layer — which defines the channel or platform in a traditional CMS. Content infrastructure has the same benefits as headless CMS, but unifies content to be managed from one content hub.

Contentful claimed content infrastructure markets digital content four to seven times faster than a traditional CMS by enabling users to do the following:

  • organize content specific to their business;
  • create content once for different platforms;
  • store all content in a central hub;
  • edit content without the involvement of developers;
  • manage teams with roles and permissions; and
  • publish content to any device.

Contentful intends its content infrastructure to enable brands to build and manage targeted, customized marketing for event-driven campaigns and localize the content for any market. Through the vendor’s Content Delivery API, editors can update content through a web app synced with any platform for consistent management.

The vendor claimed its array of content management services has decreased bounce rates, increased mobile conversion, personalized content across a breadth of languages and locales, updated content at a fraction of the time as legacy tools, and delivers new customer touch points five times faster than with a traditional CMS.

In 2018, Contentful was named a contender in Forrester’s Wave for web content management systems, challenged by leaders Adobe, Acquia and Sitecore. According to Contentful, its headless enterprise focus makes it flexible for developers. Forrester recommended the vendor for progressive digital initiatives that require content unification across channels, but also have easy access to developer resources.

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AI and preventative healthcare: Diagnosis in the blink of an eye – Asia News Center

In his office in suburban Beijing, Zhang proudly demonstrated the physical part of Airdoc’s system – a small desktop device that looks similar to a scanner a neighborhood optometrist might use for a routine eye exam.

You sit on a stool, lean forward, place your chin on a padded brace, and stare into the darkness of an eyepiece. The algorithm then takes over, precisely adjusting the angle of your head until a green cross comes into focus in the gaze of your right eye. A moment later there’s a bright, but not uncomfortable, flash of white light. The process is repeated for your left eye.

The machine has just taken high-resolution medical-grade images of both your retinas. It instantly sends them to the cloud where it takes 20 to 30 milliseconds (about the same time as an eye blink) of computation to analyze both.

Above: Taking a test at Airdoc’s Beijing office.

Moments later an impressively detailed diagnostic dashboard is sent to your smartphone. It rates from low to medium to high your susceptibility to a long list of diseases. If there is a problem, it urges you to seek professional medical help.

Right now, it can search for 30 diseases. More machine learning will soon boost that number to 50, and eventually, it could go beyond 200.

Zhang regards his system as a gamechanger because of its potential to deliver at scale and relieve stretched medical resources. To date, it has scanned more than 1.12 million people, mostly in China, but also in the United States, India, Britain, and parts of Africa. “Airdoc users are all over the world.  We hope our deep learning technology can prevent all kinds of disease.”

China, with a population of 1.3 billion, only has about 1,100 eye doctors who are qualified to analyze retinal images. So, the challenge of providing adequate diagnostic services is truly massive – and perhaps no more so than for the epidemic of diabetes.

Authorities estimate as many as 114 million Chinese have diabetes – but only 30 percent of them know that. The other 70 percent are unaware and, without early detection, will eventually be struck down with serious maladies, like blindness, strokes and other potentially fatal conditions.

“Diabetic retinopathy, or DR, is one of the most common and serious complications of diabetes. Once patients feel symptoms, they are already in a severe stage of DR and will go blind without proper treatment,” says Dr. Rui Li Wei (pictured in top image) of Shanghai’s Changzheng Hospital, one of several major medical institutions that now routinely uses Airdoc’s technology as a quick, accurate, and simple diagnostic tool.