Open Container Initiative : The next revolution in the Virtualization world

What if you can package an application with all of its dependencies into a standardized unit for software development, so it will always run the same, regardless of the environment it is running in. This will reduce a lot of headache especially in the cloud, make software automation much easier, and fix issues faster. It’s a real revolution in the world of virtualization. This solution already exists, and it’s called Docker.

what-is-vm-diagram

About two months ago, Docker announced, along with a broad coalition of vendors, users, start-ups, and industry leaders : The Open Container Project. A minimalist, non-profit, openly governed project, Open Source, vendor neutral, under the auspices of the Linux Foundation for the express purpose of defining common specifications around container format and runtime. Read more

#ArabNews How Saudi youth can boost entrepreneurship through the use of ICT

“After attending many entrepreneurs’ events mainly in Jeddah, I am still repeating the same recommendations to all, simple but hard to put in practice: Think globally but act locally, think big, start small, then scale or fail,” said Hatem Ben Yacoub, ICT & eGov consultant.

“ICT projects and products can have a very high added value, compared to selling classic stuff for small commissions; which could work only if you know how to build a huge community of customers. Saudi youth have smart, brilliant ideas, but only the lack of some key numbers. Investors love numbers, and that’s what can really boost entrepreneurship, and notice that only ICT can bring these numbers.”

ArabNews 21/12/2014 “ICT development must to create jobs: Entrepreneurs”

The future of CDIA+ after December 31, 2011

Eight months ago I started a discussion in Linkedin’s CDIA+ Certified group titled “The future of CDIA+ after December 31, 2011″ :

As you might know CDIA is quiet old certification and will be retired in 2011, is there an alternative for document imaging professionals ? how do you see the future ? would love to hear CDIA’s opinion.

Well, I was not expecting too much feedback for a certification that is retiring. I’m more interested to the CDIA knowledge, much more than the certification itself. The CompTIA Certified Document Imaging Architect (CDIA+) certification ensures critical knowledge for a career in the document imaging and document management industry.

It’s an international, vendor-neutral certification covering all major areas in the technologies and best practices used to plan, design, and specify a document imaging management system. The exam was last updated in 2009, and I think that the CDIA+ knowledge need lots of refreshments with new technologies, techniques, and best practices.

I have a small experience with document imaging solutions, and I have done a research – maybe in 2006 – as part of my job about different imaging solutions available, their benefits, features… etc. I have also implemented with my colleagues a very small but terrible imaging system based on open source tools, which is actually running in high-demand environment and serving million of documents, and hundreds of new documents archived daily… and this was a substitution to a commercial closed software which was expensive, limited, and poorly supported. So somehow CDIA+ knowledge was part of my daily job even if I was not certified at that time, but I was reading a lot about it.

I would like to thank Chuck Romano – SME Technical Advisory Committee member at CompTIA, who was probably the most enthusiast to keep this certification active and updated in the linkedin groups. Many CDIAs joined and welcomed the idea later ! And guess what ? Even CompTIA posted an updated about this certification and is actually recruiting subject matter experts (SME) to help keep this exam current and relevant for the industry, it’s not retiring anymore !

“This is where we’ll need all of you. To successfully complete the update of a certification exam it requires a minimum of 15 subject matter experts to participate in three separate workshops (job task analysis (JTA), item writing and cut-score workshop).”

If you are CDIA+ and have at least four years technical experience, you can become an SME and contribute to keep this certification active and updated. An exam development workshop is scheduled for October 3-7, 2011 in CompTIA Headquarters, Downers Grove, IL.

Notice that if they will not have 15 SME’s approved and confirmed to travel to this workshop by September 1st, 2011 the workshop will be cancelled and the CDIA+ retirement will be re-instated and moved to March 31st, 2012. Silly me, I would have helped to delay CDIA+ retirement for three months only :-) No seriously, I’m not in US to actively contribute, however I passed today CDIA+ with a score of 856/900. (Thank you)

Subject matter experts (SMEs) will receive a $300 a day stipend for the 5-day workshop, as well as meals provided during the 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. working days. Recognition for SMEs includes listing on the CompTIA website pending full participation in the program. I would love to be with you guys !

You can also join CDIA+ Advocacy Group to help document imaging industry advance, grow, and strengthen.

Your contribution is really needed, thank you !

BackupExec support for ubuntu 10 and 11 (maverick and natty)

According to Symantec support and many forum posts, Backupexec supports only Ubuntu 9, and nothing for the new versions. Since I have ubuntu 10 running in production and willing to upgrade to 11, I have managed to install support BackupExec agent on my servers without any issue and everything was working fine for the last year or two years (for one server at least). You will find below few tips and ticks in case you face issues while backing up your data with Backupexec 12.5 or 2010.

back-up-exec

 

I have noticed today that in Ubuntu – and in debian generally, the port 10000 is reserved for webmin even if it’s not installed, which is a conflict with ndmp service for backupexec agent which run on the same port. A workaround will be to change ndmp port to 12000 for example and everything will be working like charm.

The only issue here, is that in a datacenter there are more complex architectures, going behind firewalls, with public servers, … you will need to restrict dynamic ports that Backupexec is using. From a range of 10000 ports to only 4 ports for example. So to make sure that there is no firewall issue, I used to add this rule to iptables (Not required) :

$ sudo iptables -A INPUT -p tcp --dport 10000:10003 -j ACCEPT
$ sudo iptables-save
$ sudo iptables --list
Chain INPUT (policy ACCEPT)
target prot opt source destination
ACCEPT tcp -- anywhere anywhere tcp dpts:ndmp:10003
Chain FORWARD (policy ACCEPT)
target prot opt source destination
Chain OUTPUT (policy ACCEPT)
target prot opt source destination

if ndmp is not defined in services, make sure you add it :

$ sudo vi /etc/services

# comment webmin line below
# webmin 10000/tcp

# add this for backupexec
ndmp 10000/tcp # backupexec

Then restart RALUS service

$ sudo /opt/VRTSralus/bin/VRTSralus.init restart

As I have previously mentioned, if 10000 is not working, try with 12000. And you are done.

Last note, it’s “recommended” to have two different selections for windows and linux servers, and have the backup method for windows servers using the reset archive bit, while the Linux using modified time. Reset archive bit might work fine for linux though even if it’s a recommendation from Symantec.

Enjoy !

Blog Action Day 2010 : Me & Water

Tunisia – Monastir, Eleven years ago ; I was studying in the National Energy Engineering School – it was my second year- and like every year we have to work on a project related to energy engineering. In that time I suggested to work on Sizing of Ozone reactor for Water treatment, the subject wasn’t as familiar as today, and not yet industrialised.

I was very excited when Professor Ahmed Ballagi accepted to coach me on this project, as he was our teacher for reactor’s course in that time.

That year I have discovered and for the first time the number of elements that could be found in water, thousands and thousands of elements ! I always thought that it’s no more that the ten elements written in the mineral water bottle !

The project was finished in time, and I even found very acceptable scientific results that my couch confirmed. This study should be available in my school (ENIM), and I’m still keeping a copy of this work at my parent’s home in Tunisia.

In the last ten years I have been actively working in the IT industry and didn’t follow-up my energy engineering studies. Today I wanted to share and remember this work, as I know that Ozone is a very dangerous element, but we can get very very good water quality especially for highly polluted water.

A post treatment should be considered if this water is for human usage, otherwise it might be sufficient for any other usage.

Today, after all these years, nothing really changed ! Do you think there is not enough technology to give clean water for everybody ? No, I think there is everything available today, however politics and economy are controlling most of the water, industry is polluting the rest of it , and for a reason or another lots of money dedicated for water treatment or protection have disappeared ….  poor people are the only ones suffering around the world, and we are all poor people.

God told us in Quran, Surat Al-Anbiya (Verse 30): “Have not those who disbelieve known that the heavens and the earth were joined together as one united piece, then We parted them ? And We made from water every living thing. Will they not then believe ?”

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(HBY) Consultancy