Monday, June 22, 2009

OpenSolaris Apps of Steel Challenge

Recently I participated in OpenSolaris Apps of Steel Challenge and I won a laptop!
My Toshiba Portégé® R600 arrived this morning and it comes pre-installed with Open Solaris. First impressions are really good - it is so light.

It is a fortunate coincidence that I'm on a short holiday right now as I will have more time to play with it :) Already doing an upgrade.

Thank you Sun you've made my day!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Intercepting Process Core Dumps

We disabled process core dumps on one of our environments but still we want to know when it happens along with some more information on the even.

root@ dtrace -q -n fbt:genunix:core:entry \
'{printf("%Y exec: %s args: %s cwd: %s pid: %d zone: %s signal: %d\n", \
walltimestamp, curpsinfo->pr_fname, curpsinfo->pr_psargs, cwd, pid, \
zonename, arg0);}' >/local/tmp/process_cores.log

Now lets try to kill a process so it tries to dump a core:

root@ bash -x
root@ kill -SIGBUS $$
+ kill -SIGBUS 14054
Bus Error (core dumped)

root@ tail -1 /local/tmp/process_cores.log
2009 Jun 19 16:07:54 exec: bash args: bash -x cwd: /home/milek pid: 14054 zone: global signal: 10
The overhead of running the script is practically none unless you're trying to dump as many core dumps as possible per second and even then the overhead should be relatively small :)

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Cognitive Computing via Synaptronics and Supercomputing (C2S2)

Cognitive Computing via Synaptronics and Supercomputing (C2S2):
"By seeking inspiration from the structure, dynamics, function, and behavior of the brain, the IBM-led cognitive computing research team aims to break the conventional programmable machine paradigm. Ultimately, the team hopes to rival the brain’s low power consumption and small size by using nanoscale devices for synapses and neurons. This technology stands to bring about entirely new computing architectures and programming paradigms. The end goal: ubiquitously deployed computers imbued with a new intelligence that can integrate information from a variety of sensors and sources, deal with ambiguity, respond in a context-dependent way, learn over time and carry out pattern recognition to solve difficult problems based on perception, action and cognition in complex, real-world environments."

Solaris Technologies Introduced for Oracle Database

Happy Birthday

Yesterday's LOSUG was a little bit surreal as we were singing happy birthday to OpenSolaris and had a birthday cake and a champagne.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

VirtualBox 3.0.0 Beta1

This version is a major update. The following major new features were added:
  • Guest SMP with up to 32 virtual CPUs (VT-x and AMD-V only)
  • Windows guests: ability to use Direct3D 8/9 applications / games (experimental)
  • Support for OpenGL 2.0 for Windows, Linux and Solaris guests

In addition, the following items were fixed and/or added:
  • Virtual mouse device: eliminated micro-movements of the virtual mouse which were confusing some applications (bug #3782)
  • Solaris hosts: allow suspend/resume on the host when a VM is running (bug #3826)
  • Solaris hosts: tighten the restriction for contiguous physical memory under certain conditions
  • VMM: fixed occassional guru meditation when loading a saved state (VT-x only)
  • VMM: eliminated IO-APIC overhead with 32 bits guests (VT-x only, some Intel CPUs don’t support this feature (most do); bug #638)
  • VMM: fixed 64 bits CentOS guest hangs during early boot (AMD-V only; bug #3927)
  • VMM: performance improvements for certain PAE guests (e.g. Linux 2.6.29+ kernels)
  • GUI: added mini toolbar for fullscreen and seamless mode (Thanks to Huihong Luo)
  • GUI: redesigned settings dialogs
  • GUI: allow to create/remove one host-only network adapters
  • GUI: display estimated time for long running operations (e.g. OVF import/ export)
  • GUI: Fixed rare hangs when open the OVF import/export wizards (bug #4157)
  • VRDP: support Windows 7 RDP client
  • Networking: fixed another problem with TX checksum offloading with Linux kernels up to version 2.6.18
  • VHD: properly write empty sectors when cloning of VHD images (bug #4080)
  • VHD: fixed crash when discarding snapshots of a VHD image
  • VBoxManage: fixed incorrect partition table processing when creating VMDK files giving raw partition access (bug #3510)
  • OVF: several OVF 1.0 compatibility fixes
  • Shared Folders: sometimes a file was created using the wrong permissions (2.2.0 regression; bug #3785)
  • Shared Folders: allow to change file attributes from Linux guests and use the correct file mode when creating files
  • Shared Folders: fixed incorrect file timestamps, when using Windows guest on a Linux host (bug #3404)
  • Linux guests: new daemon vboxadd-service to handle time syncronization and guest property lookup
  • Linux guests: implemented guest properties (OS info, logged in users, basic network information)
  • Windows host installer: VirtualBox Python API can now be installed automatically (requires Python and Win32 Extensions installed)
  • USB: Support for high-speed isochronous endpoints has been added. In addition, read-ahead buffering is performed for input endpoints (currently Linux hosts only). This should allow additional devices to work, notably webcams.
  • NAT: allow to configure socket and internal parameters
  • Registration dialog uses Sun Online accounts now.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Turbo-Charging SVr4 Package Install

Have you ever been frustrated by slow patching or package installation on Solaris 10? Looks like the issue has been partially addressed by PSARC 2009/173. Hopefully it will be integrated into Solaris 10 soon.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

GCC vs. Sun Studio

It all depends on your code, used options, etc. of course.
In a past I did some comparisons on my own and the difference usually wasn't that big and Studio not always provided better results - but that was couple of years ago.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009 picld: fatal: open failed: No such file or directory

If you noticed that 'prtdiag -v' doesn't print all information it should and you get a below error in a system log file:
picld[165]: [ID 740666 daemon.crit] picld: fatal: open failed: No such file or directory
it means you probably hit bug: 6780957
There is a workaround proposed in the bug however if you are running on ZFS as a root-fs then:
"Due to the random nature of how ZFS stores files in a directory, the workaround may or may not work."
I was unlucky this time on one server and lucky on another one. Despite me trying to populate the plugins directory several times in different ways I was still unlucky. There are many ways how to workaround the issue. For example the below workaround works fine for me:
root# svccfg -s picl setenv LD_LIBRARY_PATH "/usr/platform/sun4u/lib"
root# svcadm refresh picl
root# svcadm restart picl