Monday, November 28, 2005

Solaris NAT page updated

A few years ago, I wrote some instructions describing how to set up NAT on using IP Filter. This page is pretty popular, getting about 1000 hits per month, so I've updated it to include some info about setting up NAT on Solaris 10.

When I originally wrote the article, my firewall was a SPARCstation 2 running Solaris 7. I have since replaced that machine with a 440 MHz Netra T1 105 running Solaris 10. The T1 is ideal for this duty: it has dual 100 base-T Ethernet interfaces, dual hot-swappable disks, and consumes little power. It's 1U rack size also helps; it is also quite quiet. (I wish I could say the same about my E220R and the D1000 array that's attached to it! I'd like to replace these with smaller, quieter, more efficient machines, but cash for a new home server is a low priority at the moment...)

Monday, November 21, 2005

Solaris Express 11/05 is now available!

Solaris Express 11/05, which is build 24 of Nevada, is now available. I'm not sure what new features this has over Express 10/05 (build 23), but it *doesn't* include ZFS, which wasn't integrated until build 27. Dan Price's blog usually contains a detailed "what's new" summary, although at the time of this writing there isn't one for 11/05. He's probably too knackered after putting together his excellent ZFS screencasts, but I'm sure a guide will be published soon.


Sunday, November 20, 2005

What a week for Sun fans!

Last week (November 14 - 18) was a fantastic week for Sun advocates, with a major annoncement on nearly every day.

On Monday, Sun introduced the processor previously known as Niagara, the UltraSPARC T1. This first implementation of chip multithreading (CMT) can run up to 32 threads on 8 cores, while consuming less than 70 watts of power. Given how well scales in a multithreaded enviroment--it eats threads for lunch!--I can't wait to see some benchmarks for this CPU.

On Tuesday, Sun and Oracle announced that Oracle have selected Solaris 10 as their preferred open source 64-bit development platform and deployment platform. This should mean that Oracle on Solaris (both SPARC and x86) will continue to be tier one platforms for Oracle.

Wednesday was the big one for me. First and foremost, Build 27 of was made available. Build 27 is an important release, because it contains the much-anticipated ZFS file system. Second, Sun released Sun Studio 11--for free. Finally, support for PTC Pro/Engineer was announced for 64-bit Solaris x86.

Continuing the database/application theme for this week, on Thursday Sun announced support for Postgres on Solaris. Postgres is a free, open source database, which is technologically superior to MySQL, which for some reason gets most of the press/attention.

No announcements on Friday, but with NC05Q4 just a couple of weeks away, I think the future is looking very bright. We live in very intersting times...

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Sun's Studio compiler are now FREE!

I've known about this for quite a while, so I'm glad that the cat can finally be let out of the bag: Sun's Studio compiler collection is now FREE for all users! (Sun Studio 10 was free to registered users of , but Studio 11 removes even this small barrier to entry.)

Not only is this great news for developers (both SPARC and x86), but Linux users can also benefit from this professional-quality suite of tools, which includes C, C++, and Fortran 95 compilers, the dbx debugger, and various performance analysis and miscellaneous tools.

Who needs gcc when Studio is free?

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Galaxy systems now in the Sun HW Handbook

I just noticed that the Sun Fire X4100 and X4200 have been added to the Sun HW Handbook. Enjoy...

Thursday, November 03, 2005

First glimpse of the next Galaxy server?

If you want a glimpse of what might be one of the next Galaxy servers, check out Sun and Seagate's Flash presentation on SAS (serial attached SCSI). The presentation shows a couple of racks full of the now-familiar X4100 and X4200s, but those racks also contain similar looking 4U boxes. Hmm...

Sepculation: my guess (and if I *did* know, I wouldn't be posting this, right?) is that the 4U box is one of the 4-way or 8-way Galaxy variants Sun have hinted they're working on. Delivery time? Your guess is as good as mine, but I guess they must be fairly near completion.

I thought long and hard about posting this entry. I am privileged to receive quite a lot of confidential information from friends and contacts inside Sun, info that is either covered by a formal NDA or (more likely) by a "gentleman's NDA". That Sun entrusts some of their secrets to me is an honour that I will not abuse; the deciding factors in posting this entry were: 1) the presentation is already available on a public web site, and 2) Sun themselves link to the presentation, from the X4100 and X4200 product info pages.