Lunduke’s Light Show

Tempest Lunduke Edition Light Show

You may recall a couple of months ago, to help commemorate our 20th anniversary, we sent Bryan Lunduke a fully customized powerhouse workstation. We then guested on The Lunduke Show to talk to Bryan about it, running through all the specs. During that video, we agreed that we’d need to create a whole separate video just to discuss the lighting rig we installed in his new system.

Well, this morning our very own Chris Stevenson sat down with Bryan to run through all the ins & outs of the highly customizable RGB lighting system. Chris and Bryan demonstrated the capabilities of this unique and fun lighting setup, using open-source software to unlock the full potential of the system. Check out the video below!

The Specs

With such an overwhelming visual presence, this system needed to have the specs to back it up.  In the interest of providing Bryan a powerhouse video editing machine, our engineering focus was to combine a modern CPU with a very fast boot drive, and a beefy GPU.

This custom Pogo Tempest T6X Workstation features:

  • Intel Core i9 9900k CPU
  • Intel Z390 chipset
  • 32GB DDR4 2666MHz Memory
  • NVIDIA Geforce RTX 2070 GPU
  • Boot SSD: 500 GB Samsung 970 EVO NVMe M.2
  • Storage HDD: 8 TB Western Digital Ultrastar 7200 RPM
  • Ultra-quiet liquid cooling unit
  • Fully programmable custom RGB lighting
  • One-of-a-kind vinyl wrap

Enthusiastically Enterprise-Grade

Aside from the over-the-top visual presentation, this custom Tempest Workstation is very representative of Pogo’s desktop ethos: enterprise grade hardware built to run open source with enthusiast-level performance. 

Stay Tuned

Be sure to subscribe to Bryan’s YouTube channel, follow him on LBRY, and support him on Patreon. You’ll surely be seeing more of Bryan (and his cool new workstation) in the months and years to come. Stay tuned!

Liquid Cooled Workstations


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

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Server Refresh 2019 – 5 Reasons to Upgrade Now

5 Reasons to Upgrade Now
If you’ve got a few server refresh cycles under your belt, you already know that even the best quality hardware has a limited duty life.  Contrary to popular belief, not all workloads are moving to the cloud, especially the ones that are high cost for server compute workloads by mainstream hyperscale providers. 

So, whether you want to replace hardware this year and take advantage of new server technologies or the 30% price drop in server memory, here are several reasons why now is a great time for a server refresh.

Technology Budgets Have Increased in 2019

The need to upgrade outdated IT infrastructure to address all-new revenue opportunities is cited as the biggest driver of IT budget increases in 2019.

Recent technologies, such as predictive analytics and data-driven AI applications, have become too costly (or restrictive, in the case of public clouds) to serve on the cloud providers, such as Amazon AWS, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud, or legacy systems. This has led businesses to loosen up technology budgets to keep their in-house server infrastructure competitive.

According to the analyst firm IDC, neglecting to upgrade an organization’s on premise server infrastructure can cost IT organizations up to 39% of peak performance. IDC also found that it adds up to 40% in application management costs and up to 148% in server administration costs.

But First, What Happens If You Don’t Refresh

If you’re dealing with aging infrastructure today, you certainly won’t be able to meet the business objectives of tomorrow’s workloads. Before we cover all the reasons why you should refresh your server hardware in 2019, let’s first quickly cover all the reasons if you don’t. First of all, you would experience (or are already experiencing):

  • Decreases in Server Performance
  • Increases in Unplanned Downtime
  • Increases in Support Cost for Server Maintenance
  • Increases in Support Time to Perform Server Diagnostics & Optimization
  • Additional Risk from Expired (or Soon-to-Expire) Warranties

Ultimately, the prolonged use of legacy systems will result in slow performance, unexpected maintenance costs, and increased support costs, which may prevent you from reaching business objectives.

So, You’ve Decided to Do a Server Refresh

The ability to do even more with your IT budget couldn’t be more applicable than in 2019.  Improvements in server compute and storage technologies, along with the current supply chain issues in memory means the timing is just right for a hardware upgrade. So, whether you’re looking to replace your entire hardware infrastructure or acquire new servers for an upcoming project, here are:

The Top 5 Reasons for a Data Center Server Refresh in 2019

  1. Take Advantage of New Server Processor Technologies

Since 2017, we have seen a tremendous amount of groundbreaking innovation from both Intel Xeon Platinum Scalable Processor Familymarket leader Intel® and rival AMD®. Each chipset maker’s newest offerings bring a slew of performance optimization and efficiency features just in time for a server refresh that delivers lower TCO and higher-performance. Codenamed Cascade Lake, Intel’s new Second Generation Enterprise Xeon Scalable 14 nanometer processors deliver improved performance benefits specific to server virtualization, analytics processing and AI-specific feature sets.

At the same time, AMD has released its high-performance EPYC processor for the data center.  Built on it’s Zen architecture, AMD’s EPYC processor delivers fast, responsive, and secure processing power, enabling IT departments to deploy bare metal, virtualized, or cloud-based workloads.

  1. Improved Performance from NVMe SSDs

Iris NV1220 front & rear
Not to be outdone, NVMe (Non-Volatile Memory express) has seen dramatic improvements since their enterprise-grade adoption in the data center in the mid 2010’s. These all-flash solid-state drives deliver high data-volume throughput computing, including database OLTP workloads and predictive analytics or AI applications. Applications such as these will benefit tremendously from next-gen NVMe drives from Western Digital, Micron and others.

Have object storage needs?  CEPH workloads work great with NVMe as well, such as those performed by the OSNEXUS QuantaStor software-defined storage platform.  Plus, this year’s NVMe drives have larger storage capacity than before. The WD Black NVMe SSD are now available with up to 1TB – making 2019 the year to upgrade to an NVMe software-defined storage deployment.

  1. Memory Prices Have Dropped 30% in 2019

If you haven’t checked server memory prices lately, prices have decreased by up to 30% since January 2019.  With memory prices falling to their lowest points since 2011, now would be a great time to refresh your IT department’s legacy systems.  Get more DRAM for your IT budget with the ability to address high data-throughput performance and improve server operations for business-essential applications or R&D projects.

  1. Better Address the Demanding Workloads of Today

With these new business demands digging at IT, the server refresh cycle has been shortened when compared with previous years. From improved server operations to better managed hardware resources, new server technologies will allow your IT department to Analyticskeep pace with modern business opportunities and demanding new technologies, such as predictive analytics, artificial intelligence or machine learning.

The widespread combination of new server processor technologies, advancements in RAM, memory capacity increases, and better storage technology means that even a single new server is much better suited for modern workloads than legacy hardware.

  1. Lower Your TCO While Decreasing Downtime

As every good IT manager knows, new hardware means less downtime and a lower cost of overall ownership in maintenance and support cost.  The ability to process more requests, while using less hardware, will greatly expand the capabilities of your data center and add new value. Additionally, you’ll get a brand new server warranty, adding valuable peace of mind just in time for all these new compute projects. 

As you can see, now is a uniquely opportune time to maximize the performance of your IT budget. Check out our comprehensive product line at pogolinux.com, then email or give us a call (at 888-828-7646) and talk to one of our incredibly knowledgeable sales engineers about which upgrades will be of most benefit to you.

Ask the Experts

At Pogo it is our goal to help you maximize your IT budget throughout the duty cycle of your existing infrastructure. We hope you’ve come away with a few new ideas on how to make the most of your investment.  However, if you have questions, please contact a Pogo sales engineer. We are always here to assist you.


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

Posted in AMD Servers, Intel Servers, Non-Volatile Memory (NVMe), Rackmount Servers, Server Solutions | Tagged , , | Comments Off on Server Refresh 2019 – 5 Reasons to Upgrade Now

Pogo Returns to the GNU South

Southeast Linuxfest

On June 14th, Pogo will return to North Carolina for SouthEast LinuxFest. Over the years this show has become an important part of our show calendar. Here’s why.

What is it?

To quote liberally from the SouthEast LinuxFest website:

SouthEast LinuxFest is a community event for anyone who wants to learn more about Linux and Open Source Software. It is part educational conference and part social gathering. Like Linux itself, it is shared with attendees of all skill levels to communicate tips and ideas, and to benefit all who use Linux and Open Source Software.  SELF is the place to learn, to make new friends, to network with new business partners, and most importantly, to have fun!

Why does Pogo fly all the way across the country for a community event?

BBQ truck at SELFAt Pogo, one of our core tenets is to support the FOSS community. This company was built on a foundation of freedom and innovation through open source software, and we take an active role in promoting these ideals. We fly all the way from the northwest to the southeast to participate because this is a well run conference with knowledgeable speakers, enthusiastic attendees, and a compelling schedule of activities. And we love good BBQ, which is plentiful in Charlotte!

Will I learn anything?

Packed info sessionsSELF consistently draws distinguished speakers from the Linux and Open Source community. They deliver information-packed talks about timely topics pertinent to everyone from neophytes to battle-hardened IT veterans. Here are but a few of the great info sessions from last year:

 

  • Rescuing Ancient Code
  • FOSS Governance: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly
  • Using a Raspberry Pi to Automate our Brewery
  • Linux is the Wild West, and Let it Be That Way!
  • AI: The Future Needs Open Source
  • Mine Crypto On Hardware You Already Own
  • Professional Video Entirely on Linux
  • Copyright, Open Source, the Free Market, and the History of MySQL

What is Pogo bringing to the table?

Pogo table at SELFOne of our favorite activities at SELF is the raffle. We bring a nice prize every year, to make sure the organizers sell plenty of raffle tickets. Last year, we donated a 12TB desktop NAS system, with a full one-year license for QuantaStor by OSNEXUS. This year, we will bring another NAS, but this time with 20TB of redundant storage! Buy lots of tickets.

 

When and where is it exactly?

SouthEast LinuxFest Pogo NAS raffle tickets
June 14-16, 2019
Sheraton Charlotte Airport Hotel
3315 Scott Futrell Drive Charlotte, North Carolina 28208

SELF has established a group rate for rooms at the Sheraton, starting at $112 per night. Move quickly, as they will surely sell out! If you’re not coming in from out of town, there is plenty of free parking available right there at the Sheraton.

See you there

See you next month in Charlotte. Stop by our table to see the Pogo NAS raffle prize and grab an “I ❤ LINUX” bumper sticker. We might even have a few other surprises, too. Stay tuned!

Win a Pogo NAS at SELF

*Photos courtesy of Eugene Mah, via CC license.


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

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DRAM Prices Are Still Falling: Here’s 5 Ways Your Data Center Can Benefit from the Memory Free-Fall

DRAM Pricing continues to fall

If you’ve peeked at memory prices recently, you probably know that the cost for DRAM chips have been falling.  According to DRAMeXchange, DRAM prices have plummeted by nearly 30 percent so far in the first quarter of 2019 and are expected to continue their price-fall.

What’s Happening?

Since January, the price for memory has dropped 30%, experiencing its largest decline since 2011.  At the same time, most DRAM contracts between global hardware manufacturers have transitioned from quarterly to monthly deals in an effort to cope with the pricing volatility and minimize cash reserve burn.

Why is this Happening?

Chipmaker Intel, responsible for 90% of the CPU server market, has doubled-down on higher-priced CPUs, leaving a shortage of low-end chips.  This ‘suppression’ of demand for low-end servers has created a surplus of availability for DRAM inventory.

DRAM contracts are the purchasing agreement between the primary DRAM manufacturers and global OEM’s, whose hardware demand are tied to Intel chips.  As the volatility of DRAM prices is expected to continue into the middle of 2019, most contracts have switched from quarterly to month-to-month deals to ensure fair market prices.

How Pogo is Responding?

As a US-based system integrator that has served the IT and Open Source communities for over 20 years, we have seen our fair share of supply chain disruptions, and have the battle-scars to prove it. At Pogo, it is always our intention to respond to any technology crisis or market volatility with our customers best interests first and foremost.

As a smaller systems integrator, we have the flexibility to take advantage of these volatility swings so your IT infrastructure comes out on top.  To maintain market integrity, we purchase memory weekly thru our DRAM supply chain to ensure any new Pogo webquote (or one done with a sales rep) is accurate and reflexive of the current DRAM marketplace.

How Your Data Center Can Benefit

Strategically, as an IT buyer, whether you purchase hardware on a planned schedule or just-in-time to meet project needs, as DRAM makers struggle to reduce inventory, the current price-drop gives you two primary areas where your data center can benefit, either:

Upgrade the servers you have to extend the longevity of your previous IT investment.

Deploy new servers to realize immediate cost-savings and performance gains.

So, whether you’re looking to improve server operations and efficiency, or increase data-throughput performance for business-essential applications, here are the Top 5 Ways Your Data Center can Benefit from the Server Memory Free-Fall.

Stock Up on Server Memory

When DRAM prices drop, it’s always a good idea to stock up on memory to have some extra on-hand in your data center.  Having extra 16GB, 32GB or 64GB memory DIMMs available means you won’t have to compromise downtime or performance with the ability to quickly swap-out new DIMMs into an impacted system.  So when given the opportunity to increase your stockpile, always take it!

Upgrade Server Memory to Improve Performance

With memory prices running this low, now would be a great time to upgrade.  Why? Upgrading a server’s memory is much cheaper than buying more servers – and it does not change your current footprint of hardware to manage.

New memory (or a system upgrade) can breathe new life into a server, to improve  server multi-tasking, increase virtualized workloads or enhance performance of essential business applications.

Upgrade Server Memory to Increase Workloads

Don’t have the IT budget for a full-blown server refresh?  Whether you need to increase server tasks or boost overall server performance, a memory upgrade can be a very cost-effective way to get more productivity out of your existing IT server investment.

If you’re running 16GB or 32GB servers, consider taking advantage of the recent price drop by maximizing performance with an upgrade to 32GB or 64GB.  For example, if you’re serving a SQL database, the additional memory will improve cache queries, perform bigger sorts and will likely reduce overall CPU and disk utilization, thus increasing server efficiencies.

Running a virtualized environment?  Increase server memory to add more workloads, which saves money while reducing your server footprint.

Do a Full-Blown Server Refresh

If your company works on a 3, 4 or 5-year refresh cycle, now would be a great time to refresh older production hardware.  If budget is already allocated, you can speak to your head of finance about the immediate cost-savings and performance gains you’d realize by getting new servers now vs. later.

Purchase Project Hardware Now vs. Later

If you have a project coming up later in 2019, it may be enormously helpful to upgrade now.  Depending on how many servers, or how much total RAM your project will need, it’s worth exploring a server system quote for how much you might be saving by submitting a company purchase order to fulfill your upcoming project now.

Ask the Experts:

At Pogo it is our goal to help you maximize your IT budget throughout the duty cycle of your existing infrastructure. We hope you’ve come away with a few new ideas on how to make the most of your investment.  However, if you have questions, please contact a Pogo sales engineer. We are always here to assist you.

OSNEXUS Certified Storage


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

Posted in Rackmount Servers, Server Solutions | Comments Off on DRAM Prices Are Still Falling: Here’s 5 Ways Your Data Center Can Benefit from the Memory Free-Fall

Bryan Lunduke’s New Powerhouse Workstation

Pogo Tempest Lunduke Edition Workstation

If you’re part of the Linux and the open source community, Bryan Lunduke probably needs no introduction. Bryan has reported in from the front lines of the tech industry for many years, across various media. Bryan is also a sought-after speaker at open source conferences. For Bryan Lundukethe past couple of years, we have partnered with Bryan as a sponsor of, “The Lunduke Show.” In celebration of our 20th anniversary and to celebrate the continued success of Bryan’s show, we are presenting him with a brand new Pogo Linux Tempest T6X Workstation – Lunduke Edition. This tricked out desktop system has been custom designed specifically for Bryan with dual purposes in mind. It needs to be a powerful Linux-based video and audio production platform, and since it’ll be a visual prop in Bryan’s studio, it needs to look cool too. Last week, we unveiled the system on Bryan’s show”:

It’s a Wrap

Bryan is in the midst of building a new studio, adorned with a tongue-in-cheek 1980’s theme. As soon as we heard that, we knew what we had to do. Don Lunduke JohnsonWe have adorned his new workstation with a fully custom vinyl wrap. The design is reminiscent of the “Synthwave” styled neon vector graphics that were a common aesthetic back in the eighties. For extra points, we’ve also included Bryan’s trademark 8-bit avatar, reimagined with Sonny Crockett’s trademark white pants and jacket. If we play our cards right, maybe we can talk him into wearing that outfit at LinuxFest Northwest this year!

Loud Neon – Quiet System

With such an over-the-top eighties theme, Tempest T6X Lunduke Editionbright neon case lighting is a foregone conclusion. Our engineers installed a digitally controlled lighting solution. This advanced PC lighting system is fully configurable via open-source software with a full complement of RGB colors and countless illumination options. Our engineers have configured it to complement the color pallet of the custom graphics on the case. The liquid cooling system ensures this system stays whisper quiet.

The Configuration

With such an over-the-top presentation on the outside of the box, the inside of the box has a lot to live up to.  In the interest of providing Bryan a powerhouse video editing machine, our engineering focus was to combine a modern CPU with a very fast boot drive, and a beefy GPU. 

This custom Pogo Tempest T6X Workstation features:

  • Intel Core i9 9900k CPU
  • Intel Z390 chipset
  • 32GB DDR4 2666MHz Memory
  • NVIDIA Geforce RTX 2070 GPU
  • Boot SSD: 500 GB Samsung 970 EVO NVMe M.2
  • Storage HDD: 8 TB Western Digital Ultrastar 7200 RPM
  • Ultra-quiet liquid cooling unit
  • Fully programmable custom RGB lighting
  • One-of-a-kind vinyl wrap

Enthusiastically Enterprise-Grade

Aside from the over-the-top visual presentation, this custom Tempest Workstation is very representative of Pogo’s desktop ethos: enterprise grade hardware built to run open source with enthusiast-level performance. 

Stay Tuned

Be sure to subscribe to Bryan’s YouTube channel, follow him on LBRY, and support him on Patreon. You’ll surely be seeing more of Bryan (and his cool new workstation) in the months and years to come. Stay tuned!

Liquid Cooled Workstations


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

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