Tag: applications

What is Apache Tez?

You might have heard of Apache Tez, a new distributed execution framework that is targeted towards data-processing applications on Hadoop. But what exactly is it? How does it work? Who should use it and why? In their presentation, Apache Tez: Accelerating Hadoop Query Processing, Bikas Saha and Arun Murthy discuss Tez’s design, highlight some of its features and share some of the initial results obtained by making Hive use Tez instead of MapReduce. Presentation transcript edited by Roopesh Shenoy Tez generalizes the MapReduce paradigm to a more powerful framework based on expressing computations as a dataflow graph. Tez is not meant directly for end-users – in fact it enables developers to build end-user applications with much better performance and flexibility. Hadoop has …

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What is Apache Tez?

Using Dokku to Deploy PHP Applications with a “git push” on DigitalOcean

Want a Platform-as-a-Service setup like Heroku on your own $5/month VPS from DigitalOcean? Look no further than Dokku – a set of scripts built on Docker and Heroku’s own buildpacks. After this setup, you’re just one git push away from deploying your app to your own server. Step 1: Create a new Droplet with Dokku DigitalOcean has a great guide on how to use the DigitalOcean Dokku Application, so there is no sense in repeating the steps here. Follow the steps in that article, and then come back here. There are issues I ran into after the Dokku setup that are important steps not to skip. So be sure to come back here before trying to deploy your PHP application. Step 2: Setup Swap …

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Using Dokku to Deploy PHP Applications with a “git push” on DigitalOcean

Secunia PSI 1.5 is out…

Download it now: http://secunia.com/vulnerability_scanning/personal/ Secuina PSI is a great Windows application to give you visibility into what security threats are sitting on your computer. There are so many pieces and parts of software that can be easily compromised… how do you keep up with all the updates? Use Secuina PSI. It is free for personal use and I don’t compute without it. Not only does it show you what has an issue but gives direct links on how to fix it. Cool.

Dusty Name System

Every IT person has some interaction with a DNS server, even if it is not managing it. Most DNS servers, certainly the majority are sitting in some closet or rack somewhere dutifully running and collecting dust. Like a certain battery operated bunny, these services just keep on running. The durability of DNS (Domain Name System, that is) is a testimony of just how well it was designed. DNS serves every single user of the Internet consistently, day-in and day-out. What DNS does and how well it does it is nothing short of an engineering miracle simple, elegant, scalable – truly amazing. How often do you think about your DNS server? Here is my plan for how to keep your relationship with your DNS server alive and well.

  1. Check your system logs to make sure there are no impending hardware failures on the horizon. For example, be sure you have SMART enabled to check your systems hard disks and make sure that you can receive the SMART alerts should they occur. You should also review your logs for any other errors such unexpected reboots that you may have missed.
  2. Monitoring, you should really think about monitoring your DNS server. Is it up? Is it responsive? Is it giving the right answers? Can those who need to access it connect?
  3. Don’t confuse things. Don’t run a recursive name server that is also the start of authority for a DNS zone. You really, and I mean really, need to separate these functions to different servers. If you don’t you are opening your zone to a very high level of risk.
  4. Check your DNS server version. Make sure you are running the latest version of you DNS server software. This is imperative.
  5. OS updates are critical as well. Make sure you keep your system up-to-date!
  6. Run only DNS on your DNS server. You can run other software but you then have to be concerned that periodic (required) updates to your DNS software could impact other parts of that server. So the less you are running on that server the less risk. Just an idea.
  7. Never have only one DNS server. You absolutely need two resolver servers and two SOA servers, at a minimum.
  8. Try to have your SOA DNS servers on different networks with different paths to the Internet. If you do this and one of your networks goes down people will still be able to resolve your zone.
  9. Backups. Right now – go and do a dry run to restore your DNS server. If you are thinking, “Boy, how do I do that?” You should panic. You don’t want to ask that question when it really fails. Get your ducks in a row right now.
  10. Replace older hardware. The nature of hardware is that it fails. Proactively plan for replacement of your DNS server.

So please take a few minutes and at least think through each of these issues. DNS will always be an attack target. DNSstuff can help with robust tools and proactive alerts that verify configuration and assist with troubleshooting and resolution. Having DNSstuff’s web application at your fingertips is a must for IT professionals.

Looking for Love in All the OS’s

What is your quest? My quest is to find the OS, the one OS to rule them all. Over the past twenty years I have been an avid Mac and PC user running both much of the time. About eight years ago I started using the PC most of the time, but the Mac was still nearby, on the next table, running Windows XP as my desktop. When Vista came out, I tried it and while I loved the new “eye-candy”, it had some idiosyncrasies. Mostly it seemed keen on making me wait. ; “Not Responding” seemed to be its mantra. So I began my quest for something better.

This was about the time when Windows Server 2008 was releasing so I did some research and with great expectation installed it as my workstation. Everything I read said it was everything Vista should have been but it was “stable”. It installed well and things seemed promising. After a few weeks I began to get pauses again. So much so, that I thought it must be a hardware problem. I created a diagnostic CD and ran a “level-1” diagnostic for a day – no problems were found! This was ridiculous. Now I have to tell you that this is my work computer. At home I had installed Windows XP x64 at about the same time I abandoned Vista and that has been going along just fine. Everything seems to be working well at home. So what should I do?, I thought. Being of the opinion that the “grass is always greener” and the Utopian view that some other technology will be just great, I decided to take the plunge and install Linux on my work computer, Ubuntu 8 to be precise.

So how did that work out for me? It’s been two weeks and it seems ok, it seems stable. Only a couple of times did it lose its mind, but at least it came back. I’m still waiting for the dust to settle, but I think this might just be a workable OS on my work computer. But — since we use Exchange as our corporate email server and I have been using Outlook Web Access with Firefox 3. While it is usable it is nowhere near as good as Outlook itself. I have a love hate relationship with Outlook; I love the functionality but I hate its sluggishness, talk about “Not Responding”. But its utility trumps its bad attitude. I did try Evolution and it is surprisingly good but not good enough. OWA is not great in Firefox, but it is more reliable than Evolution. I tried to use OpenOffice but it doesn’t work as well as Office 2003 or Office 2007. So I got WINE working and installed Office 2003 under Ubuntu.

I find that now I am doing less with my computer (in some ways because I am less familiar with how to do things in Ubuntu) and doing less seems to directly contribute to greater reliability. But since I am very used to Microsoft applications and can be very productive with them, I’m considering going back to Windows. Heck, Windows works pretty well, well except for Vista — so maybe I will switch to Windows XP x64 here at work. What do you think? Give me your advice, comments are welcome.

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