Win Big with Pogo @ LinuxFest Northwest

Do you feel lucky?!
LinuxFest Northwest is only a few days away! This year’s show promises to be bigger than ever.
In that spirit, we at Pogo are going to outdo ourselves with several great prize donations. It’s a long
standing tradition that Pogo donates a workstation as the grand prize of the LinuxFest Northwest
raffle. However, this year we’re taking it up a notch with a luxuriously appointed Verona 931H, valued
at over $2,100. Be sure to stock up on raffle tickets! Click on the image below to see all the specs.

Win this Pogo Linux worstation

Also, in partnership with Micron, we are giving away several 1TB Solid State Drives. We’ll be having drawings at our booth (# T39). Stop by the booth to grab some cool swag and enter our drawings.

cephFinally, our very own VP of Sales & Product Development, Paul Bibaud will be presenting
a talk entitled, “An Intro to Ceph and Big Data.” He’ll show you how you can use Ceph to build a quick and reliable storage cluster with commodity hardware.
Join us on Saturday at 1:30, upstairs in room CC-208.

< tl;dr >

If you can get to Bellingham this weekend, you owe it to yourself to join us at LinuxFest Northwest. It’s informative, fun, free, and you can win a bunch of great prizes!

LinuxFest Northwest 2015
Bellingham Technical College
3000 Lindbergh Ave., Bellingham, WA 98225
Sat. & Sun, April 25th & 26th: 9:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. (both days)
Register here for free: http://linuxfestnorthwest.org/2015

From a powerhouse desktop workstation to a multi-petabyte storage system, there’s a Pogo solution that’s perfect for your IT needs. To learn more, visit www.pogolinux.com or call (888) 828-POGO (7646) to speak with a knowledgeable sales advisor.
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April means LinuxFest Northwest

Win a Pogo Workstation at LinuxFest Northwest

Is it April already?!
Well, that means it’s time once again for the open source community to descend on Bellingham Technical College for LinuxFest Northwest. For the twelfth time, Pogo Linux is proud to sponsor one of the nation’s largest conferences dedicated to all things Linux and open source. Every year, this event is bigger and better than the year before. Last year saw over 1,500 LFNW 2014attendees come through the door, and even more are expected this year. Once again, admission is free. Be sure to register right away, if you haven’t already.

Though you may already be familiar with everything LinuxFest Northwest has to offer, here’s a quick run-down of what you can expect this year.

There are over seventy different sessions, presented by a who’s who of thought leaders in the technology space. Covering a wide range of topics, there’s truly something for everyone. You may have a hard time narrowing it down to the ones you can’t miss! Here are some that caught our eye:

•  OpenStack — Not just for Public Clouds – Jesse Keating from Blue Box
•  ACLU / EFF Panel Discussion – Seth Schoen from the EFF
•  2014 was the Year of the Linux Desktop. You missed it. – Bryan Lunduke & James Mason of SUSE
•  Crushing Data Silos with ownCloud – Frank Karlitschek from ownCloud
•  Webscale’s dead; long live PostgreSQL! – Joshua Drake from PgUS

After taking in some of those top-notch information Pogo cool swagsessions, be sure to explore the expo hall downstairs. Stop and say hi at the Pogo Linux booth, put your name in the big wine glass to win some cool prizes, and grab some fun swag!

There will be a terrific after-party on Saturday night, but make sure you get there on time. Last year, the party was so popular, they were turning people away! (If that happens, you can always rely on April Brews Day, which is just down the street.)

2014-raffle-winnerPogo Linux is proud to continue our tradition of donating a fully-loaded Linux Workstation to the LFNW raffle. Are you our next winner? There are a great many other prizes to be given away, as well. Be sure to buy plenty of raffle tickets!

< tl;dr >

If you can get to Bellingham on the last weekend in April, you owe it to yourself to join us at LinuxFest Northwest. It’s informative, fun, free, and you can win an awesome fully decked out Pogo Linux workstation!

LinuxFest Northwest 2015
Bellingham Technical College
3000 Lindbergh Ave., Bellingham, WA 98225
Sat. & Sun, April 25th & 26th: 9:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. (both days)
Register here: http://linuxfestnorthwest.org/2015

From a powerhouse desktop workstation to a multi-petabyte storage system, there’s a Pogo solution that’s perfect for your IT needs. To learn more, visit www.pogolinux.com or call (888) 828-POGO (7646) to speak with a knowledgeable sales advisor.
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Inversoft Case Study

Inversoft: Consistent Performance - Not a Cloud in Sight

After doing their best to make it work, the developers at Inversoft (http://www.inversoft.com) had to accept one simple truth: The public cloud solution that hosted their development environment was impeding their ability to serve their customers.

About Inversoft

InversoftFor nearly a decade, companies ranging from startups to the Fortune 500 have turned to Inversoft for help managing their online communities. Inversoft’s CleanSpeak profanity filtering and moderation software makes it simple for companies to confidently provide online forums and chat functionality, without the administrative hassles.

The Challenge

Initially, Inversoft relied on a public cloud provider to host their development and test environment.  However, problematic lapses in services occurred far too frequently. Inversoft CEO Brian Pontarelli explains, “Cloud providers are aggressive about upgrading their hardware because they want to be competitive, but it’s problematic when they schedule downtime. They’d tell us they just bought a bunch of new servers and they want to move our instances around, so they’re going to have to take us down at a certain time. Cloud is DarkBut then they’d never really come back up right. Because of underlying structural changes, things didn’t always work perfectly. That was a major pain point.”

Another obstacle was a lack of performance. With customers sometimes sending thousands of messages per second, it is important that Inversoft runs demanding performance tests to ensure proper throughput with their software. Unfortunately, their cloud provider’s servers were not always up to the task.  “I couldn’t understand why our performance tests were failing so badly,” said Pontarelli. “So we ran some quick tests. I essentially ran a million operations on the public cloud instance, and then I ran the exact same operation locally. It was immediately obvious that we’d get much faster —  and most important to us — consistent performance by moving away from a public cloud.”

The Solution

To meet the growing needs of their business, Inversoft moved their deployment environment to a locally hosted Iris 1181 rack mount server from Pogo Linux and have been happy with the results ever since. Not only have they achieved greater performance consistency but their overall build and test times have gone down significantly. Iris 1181 1u rack mount server“As soon as we deployed our first Pogo server, we were able to get our build and release times down from over two hours to about twenty minutes!” In addition Inversoft was able to get consistent performance for their test suite, no longer having to restart tests caused by their previous cloud server having uneven performance.

The experience with their Pogo infrastructure and running their workload locally has influenced what Inversoft now recommends to their own customers. “We advise our clients not to start in a public cloud if they can avoid it. You really need to make a decision. Is performance, security and stability more important, or is it horizontally No more cloudscaling, spinning up instances in a minute, and having this dashboard for managing all your services? A lot of companies have to work their way through the process of figuring that out. Beyond certain limits, there’s nothing we can do to make the cloud services any faster.” In search of better performance and reliability for their customers, Inversoft plans on offering a complete hosted and managed solution, custom built for the demands and uptime requirements of their software.

The Future

Noting that businesses are often building their online communities on top of decade-old technology, Inversoft has responded by designing two new services from the ground up, incorporating modern APIs to make online communities both more flexible and easier to manage.  The new services, called Gather and Passport, provide a very Inversoft Gather and Inversoft Passportcustomizable and scalable forum platform, and also ease the complexities of user account management. Pontarelli explains, “We’re looking at helping brands build online communities. If you want to set up a chat system in one of your games, or you want to set up a forum where people can talk about your products, the software currently available is very old and outdated. We saw a clear opportunity to elevate the online community experience by developing a next-generation solution.” Judging by the success of their previous products, it is no surprise that they already have customers lining up for the new offerings.


To learn about how Pogo can help you solve the issues your organization is facing, please call us at 888-828-POGO, or email sales@pogolinux.com.

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SCaLE 13x Recap and More

Cascadia IT Conference

Join us next week for the Cascadia IT Conference

Our busy trade show schedule continues with the Cascadia IT Conference, next Friday and Saturday, March 13 & 14 at the Hotel Deca, Seattle. Here’s the official synopsis of the show: “A gathering of professionals from the diverse IT community in the Pacific Northwest to learn, share ideas, and network. We go by many titles but everyone is invited: System administrators, network administrators, network engineers, Windows, Linux, Unix, DBAs, etc. The conference includes panels, presentations, invited speakers and keynotes, as well as training by top-notch experts.”

Along with reconnecting with our friends in the northwest IT community, we’re also looking forward to hearing the great speakers at CasITConf. Here are just a few notable examples:

• Magic, Myth, and the DevOps – Jennifer Davis
• Mr Miyagi’s DevOps Dojo – George Miranda
• How To Not Get Paged: Managing Oncall to Reduce Outages – Tom Limoncelli
• Painlessly Discovering and Monitoring all the Things – Alan Robertson

There is still time to sign up, but conference slots are filling up, so don’t delay!

[ Register for CasITConf ]

 

SCaLE 13x Post-Show Recap

Well, the dust has settled after another successful SoCal Linux Expo. Last weekend, we made our annual pilgrimage to the Hilton LAX for the largest community Linux Expo on the west coast. We always enjoy checking in on the Linux community, making new friends,  reconnecting with old ones, and giving away great prizes.

SCaLE 13x Pogo prize winners

The Talks

A couple of weeks ago on this blog, we called out a number of talks at SCaLE that we expected to be particularly informative and entertaining. Since we know that not all our readers were able to make it to the show, we are happy to be able to share all of those talks with you right here and now!

Hacking your car — the easy way Why Scale Up is Like Star Trek and Scale Out is Like Star Wars Introduction to OpenStack
Hacking Your Car Star Trek and Star Wars OpenStack

How to Thoroughly Insult and Offend People in Your Open Source Communities Gluster Quickstart Sunday Keynote
Insult and Offend Gluster Keynote


To learn about how Pogo can help you solve the issues your organization is facing, please call us at 888-828-POGO, or email sales@pogolinux.com.

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SCaLE 13x – Celebrating open source in Los Angeles

Pogo Linux @ SCaLE 13x

Why should you come to SCaLE?

For Pogo Linux, February means it’s time for our first open source conference of 2015. We’re making our annual pilgrimage to the Southland to exhibit at SCaLE 13x, the Southern California Linux Expo. Like the past few years, it’s at the Hilton LAX hotel from February 19th to 22nd.  We’ve been a sponsor at SCaLE since the early days. From the informative and entertaining talks, to the huge expo floor, and of course the parties, this is a show we always love being part of.

Get 40% of the price of admission with the promo code: POGO. Sign up here.

As we discussed in our prior blog post, the organizers have put together another terrific schedule of great presentations this year. There’s so much useful information being shared, we wish we could be in all the meeting rooms at once.

Win a Pogo Linux WorkstationWorkstation-Prize-Scale13x

At the Saturday night party at SCaLE, one of the highlights is always the prize raffle. There are tons of great prizes, provided by the sponsors. Once again, Pogo is providing the crown jewel of the giveaway, a brand-new Verona 931H Workstation! Click here to see the full-sized spec sheet. Stop by our booth #92 to take a good look at it before it goes home with a lucky winner. Will it be you?

Win a Micron SSD

Micron SSDWe are also holding drawings at the Pogo booth for several Micron 512GB Solid State Drives. Stop by the booth and we’ll set you up with an entry slip to secure your chance to win the next drawing.

Stickers and footballs?!

Pogo SCaLE FreebiesEven if you don’t win the workstation or an SSD, you still win! We’ve always got fun freebies for everyone who wants to show their support for Linux. Stop by for a squishy football and our trademark bumper stickers.

The 13th annual Southern California Linux Expo takes place on Feb. 19-22, 2015, at the Hilton Los Angeles Airport hotel. As the first-of-the-year Linux and Free/Open Source Software (FOSS) expo in North America, SCaLE 13x will be hosting more than 100 exhibitors, along with nearly 130 sessions, tutorials, and special events.

SCaLE 13x Promo

To learn about how Pogo can help you solve the issues your organization is facing, please call us at 888-828-POGO, or email sales@pogolinux.com.

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Trade Shows and Star Wars

Star Wars and SCaLE?

What Does SCaLE and Star Wars Have in Common?

It’s that time of year again. The snow hasn’t even started to melt and we already have a bunch of trade shows on the calendar. It’s going to be a busy season, but here at Pogo, that’s how we like it. Our first show of 2015 is SCaLE 13x (Southern California Linux Expo) at the LAX Hilton from February 19th to 22nd.

As always, the organizers have lined up a wealth of great presentations to attend. Definitely a lot on Docker, DevOps, Linux, and other open source technologies. Just to give you an idea of how much great information is being shared, we’ve listed five of the sessions (in no particular order) that we are looking forward to.

Hacking your car — the easy way

Many of us here at Pogo have a passion for all things automotive, so this session is right up our alley. Cars are not often thought of as high-tech in the same way as our computers or mobile devices, but there is a lot going on under Hacking Your Carthe hood. The auto industry is constantly bringing more new technologies into the dashboard, particularly in high-end cars. Still, there is an impressive array of technologies you can employ today on the car in your driveway. Nathan Willis from LWN.net will be telling us about how we can expand the capabilities of our daily driver with open source software and inexpensive hardware. This stuff goes way beyond mere car stereos or GPS units! [ read more ]

Why Scale Up is Like Star Trek and Scale Out is Like Star Wars

Star Trek Scale UpAny presentation that has both Star Trek and Star Wars in the title has to be a no-brainer. We’re nerdy like that. All that notwithstanding, this promises to be an interesting session about how to best manage your own galactic fleet of virtual machines. This is presented by author and Red Hat community liaison, Brian Proffitt. We always look forward to discussing computers, Jean-Luc Picard, and TIE fighters. [ read more ]

Introduction to OpenStack

We at Pogo have deployed many OpenStack projects in the past year and strongly advocate it as a cost effective way to deploy a private cloud. If you OpenStackdon’t know anything about OpenStack, now is a great time to learn! You’ll be in good hands, as the presenter is by Rich Bowen from Red Hat and Apache. Though still a small part of the overall IT market, OpenStack promises to continue growing in popularity for the foreseeable future. This is a great technology to add to your toolbox. [ read more ]

How to Thoroughly Insult and Offend People in Your Open Source Communities, or “Your #$%@ $%@&ing sucks and I $%@&ing hate it”

Manners and etiquette are the last things you would expect to learn about at a Linux Netiquetteconference. However, the way we conduct ourselves in the open source community is just as important as the info we share. This promises to be an interesting and humorous look at how to lead by example, and keep the open source community healthy and growing. This entertaining presentation is being conducted by Gina Likins, who has been an expert on netiquette for as long as netiquette has been a word! [ read more ]

Gluster Quickstart

GlusterWe have deployed Gluster many times for scale out storage. It’s a great solution for maintaining high availability while adding capacity. It’s also very cost effective, as it can run on a huge variety of common hardware. If you’re not already familiar with this technology, Red Hat’s Thomas Cameron will give you a great introduction, along with plenty of tips for a smooth deployment. [ read more ]

To learn about how Pogo can help you solve the issues your organization is facing, please call us at 888-828-POGO, or email sales@pogolinux.com.

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5 technologies to watch in 2015

5 Technologies to Watch in 2015

2014 brought us a lot of interesting hardware technologies, including the continued growth of SSDs, the launch of 12GB SAS, and a big platform refresh from Intel® with the new Xeon® Processor E5-2600 v3 product family.

So, now that the New Year’s confetti has been swept up and the hangover has faded into memory, it’s time to get back to business. What will be the most notable technologies to emerge in 2015?

While 2014 brought us several important hardware updates, this year we expect to see big new trends in both hardware and software. Below are five emerging technologies that all of us at Pogo are particularly excited about for 2015.

“Software-Defined Everything” is Mainstream

Pogo has always been a big proponent of Software Defined Storage, Software-Defined Everythingand in 2015 this is more important than ever. The pairing of commodity hardware with a new breed of software stacks will continue gaining the legitimacy it deserves.
“Software-Defined” is moving well beyond individual systems and into clustered storage, hyperscale, and hyper converged applications.

New Storage Technologies like Ceph and Swiftstack

cephTalk about a new breed, Ceph is right there at the top of our list of storage software technologies to watch. Being a fully clustered solution which can quickly scale, Ceph is taking the hyper-scale market by storm. In addition to block and object storage, Ceph will soon support production level file access, making it a serious contender for any large scale storage project.

Large Cap Spinning Disks

As Mark Twain said, “The reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated.” So it is with the large capacity spinning disk. The economics still don’t work for an all flash world, Large capacity hard driveespecially with the technologies currently coming to market in magnetic medium. 8TB and 10TB drives will be common place in 2015. The only caveat to this storage expansion is with these increased sizes also come slower access, as technologies such as Shingled Magnetic Recording must be used to obtain these extreme aerial densities. This leads back to more work on the software side with tiering and caching, but the needs in these areas are being quickly met.

SSDs and the Death of 15k

While the high-capacity spinning disk is here to stay, we predict the imminent demise of 15k small-cap drives. 15k still has a better price per GB than SSDs, but it’s not much of an advantage any more. There is just no place in the market for a ‘tweener’ disk between slow high-cap and fast SSD. Manufacturers will still produce 15k for quite some time to handle the needs of legacy customers.  However, by the end of 2015 these drives will have limited usefulness in new deployments.

NVMe

NVMe (Non-Volatile Memory express) is a recent specification that enables SSDs to connect directly to the PCI bus. This reduces stack overhead and provides up to a 50% NVMereduction in latency vs typical SATA/SAS based SSDs. With NVMe based SSDs finally arriving in 2015 to match the growing market of chassis and other components, we see this technology rapidly becoming a go-to choice for ultra low latency applications.

2015 is shaping up to be another exciting year for new technologies and developments in the IT world. As always, we’re here on the forefront, helping guide our customers through the jungle of evolving technologies. We love partnering with our clients to architect the perfect recipe of hardware and software for their unique environments. If you have any questions, give us a call or drop us a line. We always love discussing new tech!

See our Intel Xeon E5-2600 v3 Servers

If you have any questions about how Pogo can help you solve the issues your organization is facing, please call us at 888-828-POGO, or email sales@pogolinux.com.

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Kato.im lowers TCO by 75% – Case Study & Video

Kato improves customer satisfaction with Pogo Linux servers

Kato is a successful Silicon Valley startup with an ongoing mission to disrupt the dated methodology of reliance on email for corporate communications. They have developed a revolutionary messaging platform that enables teammates to engage in ongoing conversations via instant message, voice, and video from virtually anywhere there is an internet connection. After exhausting the limitations of cloud providers, their communication service is now running on a backbone of servers built by Pogo Linux. They shared their interesting story with us at their downtown San Francisco office. You can hear (and see) it for yourself in the video series below.

A New Platform to Redefine Corporate Communication

As Kato began developing their new communication platform, they relied on the services of cloud providers. Without the need to set up their own infrastructure, they were able to focus exclusively on building their application. However, as they began to scale up their service and bring more and more clients onto the platform, the limitations of cloud providers became more and more apparent.

 

As the platform continued to scale, cloud vendors could not meet the network requirements, or the uptime needs of Kato’s customers, without being prohibitively expensive. After one episode in which their service went offline for a number of hours because of an unexpected outage at their cloud provider, they knew they needed to move on. They needed the reliability, flexibility, and cost savings that come with building their own infrastructure.

Kato CTO Peter Hizalev realized their best bet was to bring in a more affordable solution that they could manage in-house. Hizalev has extensive experience managing colocated servers in his past roles, so he was confident that by managing their own hardware, Kato could get the network QOS (Quality of Service) their application demanded and have their technical needs met, while significantly reducing their overall costs and TCO.

Prior Experience Proved Pogo had the Expertise

After Kato decided to bring their systems in-house, the next step was finding a reliable hardware partner with Linux expertise. Luckily, that step was easy as Hizalev had already worked with Pogo Linux in a past role. “From my research at the time, I knew that Pogo Linux had a good build process and a good testing process in place, so we ordered several Pogo servers. We decided to go with a route that already provided a good degree of success.” The Pogo sales engineers helped configure the ideal hardware solution and were able to pre-configure the systems as required to meet Kato’s needs.

Getting the Hardware Right

In order to meet Kato’s unique workload and storage requirements, Pogo recommended Iris 1168 rackmount servers with a complement of solid state drives for their application. Kato’s application generates an enormous amount of incoming messages, so their servers need to be optimized for writing. Using SSDs instead of hard drives (HDDs) as their main data store enables a much higher rate of sustained throughput, as necessitated by their workload.

Pogo Linux Iris 1168 Server

Pogo Linux Iris 1168 rackmount server

• Supermicro SYS-1017R-MTF 1U Chassis / 330W
• Intel Xeon E5-2600 v3 or v2 series CPU
• Up to 256 GB DDR3 1600MHz ECC Registered Memory
• 8x 2.5″ SAS Drive Bays (SSD or HDD)
• Optional LSI MegaRAID SAS Controller
• Slim DVD/ROM
• Standard 3-Year Warranty
• World-Class Support

Effortless Deployment Lets Kato Focus on Customers

Kato had very specific OS and file system mandates, and knew they could trust Pogo Linux to ensure that these provisions were met. “We made our requirements pretty clear on how things should be set up on those machines, like which partitions we expected, etc. This was all done very accurately on the Pogo side,” said Hizalev.

Pogo implemented Kato’s specified configuration on their new servers exactly as requested, which made deployment incredibly easy. Using a differential script that installs and configures the necessary software allowed Kato to plug in a brand new Pogo machine and have it ready to be provisioned as a part of their live cluster with just a few keystrokes. This saved them a great deal of time, and made deployments refreshingly simple. 

Lowering TCO by 75%, High Quality

In deciding to avoid dependence on cloud services providers, the founders of Kato are taking a different approach than that of their competitors. “They’re all spending four to five times more on hardware than we are. We feel that gives us the financial freedom to do other things, such as hiring more developers, which is great,” said Andrei Soroker, CEO, Kato.

By their own calculations, Kato is enjoying a savings of nearly 75% by utilizing their own servers from Pogo Linux, rather than paying for cloud services. “If we tried to maintain the same capacity from a cloud provider, it would be three or four times the cost. So within several months of paying for a single cloud instance, we could buy a server. This is pretty incredible!” said Hizalev. In addition, Soroker emphasized that cost is not the only consideration — “The quality of service is arguably more important than cost. It comes down to the quality of the product.”

Bottom Line

Kato plans to continue scaling out their application using servers from Pogo Linux. They appreciate being able to focus their attention where it is most important, developing their product and serving the needs of their clients. Implementing additional Pogo servers as their customer base continues to grow will be a simple, effortless process. Soroker said, “With Pogo Linux, we get great value, great support, and great products. Their Linux expertise and transparency of operations give us the confidence to devote our resources to improving our product and serving our customers, rather than worrying about high costs and unexpected downtime.”

About Kato

“Kato is a powerful collaboration platform based on simple chat. Our mission is to help your organization move faster by decreasing email volume and making all communication instantly searchable.” –From the Kato website

As developers working on distributed projects, the founders of Kato longed for a platform that would let teammates collaborate seamlessly with text, voice, and video — explicitly searchable, accessible, and useable from anywhere. With the belief that persistent, searchable, real-time chat fits the way people work much more effectively than exchanging documents and managing threads of email, they founded the Kato platform (kato.im). 

See our Intel Xeon E5-2600 v3 Servers

If you have any questions about how Pogo can help you solve the issues your organization is facing, please call us at 888-828-POGO, or email sales@pogolinux.com.

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In the Cloud or Build Your Own?

Cloud it or Build it?

“Cloud computing” is everywhere these days, making it seem like anyone not on the cloud bandwagon is in the IT dark ages. The Cloud has moved to the center of the IT world, promising a cheap, easy alternative to building and maintaining an in-house IT infrastructure. But is it always the best solution?

As with a lot of things, it depends.

There are a lots of reasons why running your business on cloud-based applications is a great idea. The barrier to entry is extremely low — with a hosted application, an entire company can be up and running in a matter of minutes. With no server farm to manage, an organization can focus on its core business. If an organization has a need to scale quickly or for brief periods of time, a cloud solution provides the perfect infrastructure to handle the changing load.

At the same time, the cloud can’t be all things to all people, and it has limitations. For those with a static workload, the cloud can be much more expensive than traditional in-house IT. Cloud solutions are tailored toward general IT usage, so custom configurations (for specific performance or network requirements) are not easily achieved. And service outages can and do occur. Cloud solutions that guarantee “four nines” of uptime (99.99%) are prohibitively expensive for many organizations.

Where does the cloud fit best?

IT requirements for any application or service can be measured on a horizontal scale, with Generalized IT at one end and Specialized IT at the other. The cloud is ideal for Generalized IT applications and services like email and file storage. For example, web-based email and scheduling apps, cloud-based CRM, and document storage all work well in the cloud.

On the other end of the spectrum is Specialized IT. Specifically, organizations that run high-performance custom applications, such as a company that requires specialized suites of extremely responsive custom software to manage their inventory, accounting, and web apps.  Such an organization would be better served building a computing infrastructure specifically tailored to address their unique needs, rather than “pounding to fit” in the cloud.

Cloud vs Infrastructure

Most organizations have applications and services that fall at various places along the spectrum. A hybrid cloud approach gives the most bang for the buck, with a mix of cloud-based services and customized applications on the company’s own servers, either on-site or in their local colo facility.

Case Study – When to build your own infrastructure

One of Pogo’s clients, Kato.im, is a great example of how a startup can benefit by using cloud solutions initially, and transitioning to their own servers as their needs change. Kato has designed a persistent instant messaging platform that revolutionizes the way members of an organization can collaborate. Initially, they relied on a cloud provider to host their messaging application. This worked well at first, allowing them to focus exclusively on developing their product.

However, as Kato’s messaging service began to scale up with more and more users, the limitations of their chosen cloud provider became apparent. There were three main issues that led them to migrate their application to their own servers:

  1. Persistent Connections – The Kato messaging platform requires persistent open connections, and users often encountered connection resets when the app was hosted in the cloud. The cloud solution could not support “always-on” connections that are a key component of the Kato platform.
  2. Service Outages – There were several occasions where Kato’s cloud provider unexpectedly went offline for several hours, locking all of their clients out of Kato’s application. Kato had no control of the infrastructure, so they were powerless to get their platform back online.
  3. Cost – By their own calculations, moving to their own servers is saving them nearly 75% of the price of an equivalent cloud solution.

Quote from Kato CEO

Getting the Hardware Right

Kato purchased several Pogo Linux Iris 1168 rackmount servers and got them up and running very quickly at their bay area colo facility. They immediately saw the significant benefits of running their own custom servers, both for their budget and for their customers.

Deciding on the best way to apply cloud services to your organization’s needs is seldom a simple equation. With new cloud providers constantly joining the fray and existing players adding new services, it can be challenging to put together the right plan to meet your unique requirements. Despite their ubiquity and low barriers to entry, cloud services are not always the ideal solution. In many cases, companies still benefit most from running their own hardware.

To find out more about how running your own servers stacks up against equivalent cloud solutions, call Pogo at 1 888 828 POGO, or visit us at pogolinux.com. Our engineering team is always ready to help you find your best solution.

Pogo Linux Iris 1168 Server

Pogo Linux Iris 1168 rackmount server

• Supermicro SYS-1017R-MTF 1U Chassis / 330W
• Intel Xeon E5-2600 v3 or v2 series CPU
• Up to 256 GB DDR3 1600MHz ECC Registered Memory
• 8x 2.5″ SAS Drive Bays (SSD or HDD)
• Optional LSI MegaRAID SAS Controller
• Slim DVD/ROM
• Standard 3-Year Warranty
• World-Class Support

About Kato

“Kato is a powerful collaboration platform based on simple chat. Our mission is to help your organization move faster by decreasing email volume and making all communication instantly searchable.” –From the Kato website (kato.im

See our Intel Xeon E5-2600 v3 Servers

If you have any questions about how Pogo can help you solve the issues your organization is facing, please call us at 888-828-POGO, or email sales@pogolinux.com.

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Intel Xeon 2620 v2 vs. v3 CPU: Benchmarked

cpu-benchmark-blog-header

We have already said a lot about the impressive features of the new Intel® Xeon® platform, but at the end of the day, we all know that performance numbers speak louder than words. When a new CPU family arrives in our lab, we make a point of running a suite of demanding benchmarks to get a clear picture of how the new hardware performs. So how does the new v3 Xeon processor stack up against the last generation?

Benchmarking Against the v2 Platform

Every processor line has many product variations, such as core count, frequency, and cache. It was important that this comparison be apples to apples. If we could not create some parity with the hardware in the two test systems, the performance difference between the two processors would not have a lot of meaning. With this in mind, ultimately we decided to use the v2 and v3 versions of the E5-2620 CPUs for these tests.

 
Why did we go with the Xeon E5-2620 CPUs? Though it may not be top-of-the-line, the 2620 has consistently been one of our best-selling processors. It lives in the coveted sweet spot at the confluence of price and performance. This means the test will be relevant to a huge portion of our customer base. Sure, it would be fun to test the all-new 18 core Xeon 2699’s, but those aren’t exactly flying off the shelves.

The second reason is price. In real-world applications, how the specs change from one processor to another are not as important as how much performance you get for your dollar. While the v2 and v3 versions of the 2620 have different specs, they are extremely similar in cost from one generation to the next. This is key, because it lets us compare two systems of almost identical price which makes differences in performance much easier to analyze.

DDR4 Memory

Speaking of pricing, there is one important side note about these two systems. They are similar in price but the v3 system is still slightly more expensive. Didn’t we just get through saying that the processors cost the same? Well, with the move to DDR4 there is currently a slight premium on the cost of the newer memory. This should subside quickly but can make a difference overall. It really depends most on how much memory is in the system. Our test boxes used 32GB each and the overall price difference was less than 2%, so unless you need a vast amount of memory, the price delta should be small.

Benchmark System Specs

Intel Xeon Benchmark System Intel Xeon Benchmark System

Iris 228-12

Iris 226-12

• Intel Xeon E5-2620 v3 Processor
[ 2.4 GHz – 6 cores ]
• 32 GB DDR4 2133 MHz memory
• Intel C612 chipset
• 2U chassis
• MSRP: $4,219
• Intel Xeon E5-2620 v2 Processor
[ 2.1 GHz – 6 cores ]
• 32 GGB DDR3 1600 MHz memory
• Intel C602 chipset
• 2U chassis
• MSRP: $4,156

 
Intel Xeon rack server

Test Results and Synopsis

For these tests, we used the industry standard Linux-Bench live CD. The results were not surprising, with the v3 platform consistently showing an improvement over the v2. The three different C-Ray tests showed a solid gain of between 20%-30%. Hard Info and Redis each showed gains of 12%-25% and 5%-22% respectively. The standout result was OpenSSL with a huge increase in performance from one generation to the next.

What does all this mean from a price per performance metric? When factoring in the prices of the systems we tested, the Iris 228-12 (v3 system) costs a mere 2% more than the older Iris 226-12. With such an improvement in performance with every benchmark we ran, the new Xeon 2620 V3 is undisputedly the performance-per-dollar winner. Individual test results are in the infographic below:

Intel Xeon 2620 v2 and v3 Benchmarks

 

If you have any questions about these servers, the benchmark tests, or the test results, please call us at 888-828-POGO, or email sales@pogolinux.com.

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Pogo Linux offers a wide range of servers and workstations for just about every IT project or budget. From a virtualized environment to a high performance cluster, Pogo Linux helps IT departments reduce cost with open platform solutions custom designed to achieve the most for the least cost. Discover how Pogo Linux can help you find solutions to your problems by contacting sales@pogolinux.com or calling (888) 828-POGO (7646) to speak with a trusted sales engineer.

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