Friday Apr 18, 2008

Welcome Matthais

Please give a warm welcome to our Virtual Desktop Engineering team member, Matthais Müller-Prove! Matthais is filling the role of our first ever usability architect for all things VDI, Sun Ray, SGD and the like.  While he didn't have me at "hello", he sure got me with this line "...sooner or later both 'remote' and 'virtual' will become obsolete concepts for the end user."

Monday Mar 24, 2008

Earth Hour

Earth Hour is going global this year with a whole bunch of cities turning non-essential lights off.

I've got a better idea. Turn off \*AND\* unplug non-essential computers.

And while you've got them off, replace them with a Sun Ray that uses less power than your PC in powersave mode.


Monday Mar 10, 2008

Your secure mobile desktop just got mobile-ier



Matt works in Sun Fed.  Matt works with many three letter agencies.  Matt has such high security clearance, the process to get it would probably cause most of us to have a nervous breakdown.  What would happen if Matt lost or had his Accutech Gobi8 Sun Ray laptop stolen?  Nothing.  It's a nice door stop for the person who uses it next.

Sun Ray @ VoiceCon

If you are heading to VoiceCon in Orlando next week, be sure to stop by the Mitel booth and check out the latest on the Sun/Mitel partnership.  Unfortunately VoiceCon interferes with our Spring Break and we have vacation plans already.

Thursday Feb 21, 2008

Microsoft Announcement: What it means to Thin Client Computing

Did you catch Microsoft's announcement today?  If you live in a world where things like VDI, WTS, RDP mean something to you, then you'll be excited to know that as of today anyone can view the Microsoft Remote Desktop Protocol specification.  Why is this news?  Because up until today this involved lawyers, contracts, large sums of money and view only access via a remote connection that even disabled your clipboard.  That's why.

Wednesday Feb 06, 2008

Sun Rays in the EBC

The Sun Ray area in our Menlo Park Campus' Executive Briefing Center got a fresh new look.

Photos courtesy of Ron Shipper, Sun Ray Engineering.  More here

Worlds Largest Sun Ray

The Sun Ray 2 XL

More pic's from the MPK Mardi Gras Parade courtesy of Ron Shipper from Sun Ray Engineering.

Thursday Jan 10, 2008

Not presenting in Grenoble

Just an update to those who are expecting to see me at the technical deep dive in France.  I am unable to attend due to some health issues with my youngest daughter.  The event is still happening and Sun Ray will be still be covered by John Pither and Dirk Grobler.  I apologize for the last minute notice and I hope to make it over to Europe during the spring and summer months.

Friday Dec 21, 2007

Sun Ray Mosaic

What Google Image Search knows about our Sun Ray products.



Wednesday Dec 19, 2007

Happy Holidays

From the only Thin Clients allowed in Santa's Workshop.

Click to Play 

Tuesday Dec 18, 2007

Technical Deep Dive in France

I'll be presenting in Grenoble, France on January 15th and 16th.  Details here.  I'm available on the 17th for customer/partner meetings.

Friday Dec 07, 2007

Great Deal on a Great LCD Panel

Via AlanC on Twitter

At these prices why not get two and really put your Sun Ray 2FS to good use! 

Thursday Nov 01, 2007

Project Indiana on ESX

While I didn't achieve my goal of getting Sun Ray1 up on the "OpenSolaris Developer Preview" (aka Project Indiana) I did get it running on VMWare ESX.  In fact, I built it on my Mac using VMWare Fusion, then used VMWare Converter to import into ESX.

 Indiana as viewed through the ESX VIC Console

Not many caveats with Fusion or ESX.  But there are a few:

  1. Choose Solaris 10 64 bit as your OS Type
  2. Tell VMWare to allocate the whole disk ahead of time.  Installs much quicker
  3. Choose Bridged Networking
  4. Of course, point your CD-ROM Drive at the in-preview.iso
  5. DO NOT INSTALL VMWare-Tools.  You've been warned.  If you do, you will have to ssh into the box and uninstall them. 

Once in, you might want to used a fixed IP and other fixed network settings.  To do this you are going to have to disable Network Auto-Magic Mode.  This is simple to do, from a terminal as root do the following:

# svcadm disable svc:/network/physical:nwam
# svcadm enable svc:/network/physical:default

I didn't have much luck using the Network Settings applet to config everything correctly2, at least how I view it as correctly.  In fact the only things I think it got right was /etc/netmasks, /etc/defaultrouter, and /etc/resolv.conf

The following files needed to be changed by hand:  /etc/hosts, /etc/hostname.e1000g0, /etc/nsswitch.conf

For /etc/hosts I had to insert the hostname followed by the fixed IP, remove the hostname from the loopback address and add  localhost to the loopback line.

For /etc/hostname.e1000g0 I replaced the IP address with the hostname.

For /etc/resolve.conf I had to add dns to the hosts line

That's about it.  The installer is super cool, and I really (really!) love the "Live CD". 

Updates in the future when I get Sun Ray up on it. (See below)

1 Project Indiana uses Xorg's X Server and does not include Sun's Xsun X Server.  Today Sun Ray relies on Xsun.  While we have a prototype based on Xorg, pkgadd is broken in Project Indiana and it is impossible to install Sun Ray Server without it.  Well maybe not impossible, but extremely painful.

2 I based my network configuration based on the requirements of Sun Ray Servers utadm command.  If I didn't make the changes I did, utadm would have failed.

Friday Oct 19, 2007

Virtual Dinner

On the last night of CEC 2007 I hosted a dinner (with the financial OK from my boss) for a few of my Sun Desktop Virtualization co-workers and partners.  We had dinner at a great Tapas bar (not topless as some people mistook the verbal invite for) called FireFly\* On Paradise.  The no-shows (you know who you are!) missed out on a great evening.

From left to right: Mike Jansen from (They do SAP training centers using Sun Rays), Lou Springer, John Pither, Paul Shore, Johnathan Mills, Shawn Ferry, Denae (My Wife), Brad Lackey, Art Peck, and Ansco Van Rooyen from Cards Engineering in the Netherlands (They do Sun Ray for the PowerPC platform)

 Another group shot

 The UK Team in the house!  John Pither, Paul Shore, and Johnathan Mills.

 Brad Lackey

 Mike Jansen and Lou Springer

 Brad Lackey and my wife.

 Art Peck

 Shawn Ferry and his awesome camera gear

 Shawn Ferry again.  I like this picture.  Much better than the post mojito one with mint on his tooth.

 Lou Springer and me.

 Ansco and Me

 Group shot, Lou flirting with my wife.

 And finally one more of me and Ansco with what my wife calls the "Iguana Eye".  Happens after the Mojitos kick in. 


Thursday Oct 04, 2007

Tech Battle Throw Down!

Another case of headlines or titles which can deceive.  This is called Real One vs. Sun Ray.

My only question which is Real One and which is Sun Ray.  Sure that's a dumb question, the better one is Sun Ray.

Wednesday Sep 26, 2007

FUD Fighting on Think Thin Blog

Just a note to those interested in Sun Ray and who follow this blog more frequently than the Think Thin blog.  I'm responding to all the FUD out there regarding Sun Rays.  Feel free to follow the conversation.

Tuesday Aug 28, 2007

Desktop Virtualization Days Presentations

Pointers are being posted on the Think Thin Blog.  

Friday Aug 03, 2007

August on the Road

I'm currently enjoying one of the last Fridays I'll spend at home for the month of August.  For the next few weeks I'll be touching both coasts a few times, even up to Vancouver, BC.  I get to come home for the week-ends though, so that's always good.  Really looking forward to the trips as there are good folks @ each stop.  I'd say it's been close to 20 years since I last saw BC.  We used to sail the San Juan Islands each summer, eventually ending up in Victoria.  I'll be staying downtown with a few other Sun folks, if interested in grabbing a pint with us, drop me a line.

Thursday Aug 02, 2007

So...How was the weather in Las Vegas

Cut my presentation short will you?  Hope you didn't bring your sticks.  And no, I won't loan you my Dora umbrella.

Mwah ha ha ha ha ha!

Friday Jul 27, 2007

Desktop Virtualization Days - Virginia

Remember that post were I said we should do a Sun Ray get together in Virginia?  Well it's happening.  Besides me, our other featured speakers will be Andy Hall, Brad Lackey and Matt Hatley.  Details below.  Dress code is extremely casual (i.e. shorts are OK by me).  This is a FREE event!  If you are coming from out of town the Hilton McLean Tysons Corner is right next door to the Sun Offices.  Be sure to ask for the Sun Microsystems Rate, but check if yours is lower (especially if you have AAA or other discounts).  Both tracks are exactly the same, just giving folks flexibility to attend.


Desktop Virtualization Days

We are pleased to be offering a two day seminar focusing on the features and benefits of Sun virtual desktop solutions. Topics to be discussed are: Sun Ray Software 4.2 and it's new features, Solaris 10 Trusted Extensions, Secure Global Desktop, and Virtual Desktop Access Kit.

Track one - August 21-22, 2007
Track two - August 23-24, 2007

Sun Microsystems McLean Office
7900 Westpark Dr.
McLean, VA, 22102

Track one - event id# 1644
Track two - event id# 1678


\*Day One\*
7:30 AM To 8:00 AM Registration
8:00 AM To 8:30 AM Welcome
8:30 AM To 9:00 AM Introductions and Agenda
9:00 AM To 12:00 PM Sun Ray Software 4 Update 2
12:00 PM To 1:00 PM Lunch
1:00 PM To 3:00 PM Trusted Extensions and Sun Ray
3:00 PM To 5:00 PM Ask the experts
5:00 PM To 7:00 PM Meet the Speakers

\*Day Two\*
7:30 AM To 8:30 AM Check In
8:30 AM To 10:00 AM SGD Overview and demos
10:00 AM To 12:00 PM New Kiosk Deep Dive
12:00 PM To 1:00 PM Lunch
1:00 PM To 3:00 PM VM Technologies
3:00 PM To 5:00 PM Roadmap and Demos
You're Invited

© 2007 Sun Microsystems, Inc. All rights reserved. For information on Sun's trademarks see

If your employer requires payment for this event, please contact Linda Lam at


My name is Craig Bender aka ThinGuy. I'm a Principal Software Developer for Oracle's Virtual Desktop Engineering group.

I architect and evangelize the use of Oracle's Desktop technology including Sun Ray, Secure Global Desktop, and Oracle VDI.


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