Wednesday Apr 07, 2010

Helia secures MySQL with ZFS

ParisLabs is a French Web 2.0 startup, that came out of the TELECOM ParisTech Entrepreneurs incubator. ParisLabs develops and markets a SaaS platform for building networking sites, built off a Java / MySQL stack. It is being used, among others, by the French-speaking professional networking site Helia, kinda Facebook meets Monster. Helia stood out of the pack last year and is now reaching 300K monthly unique visitors as of March 2010 --we wish them a continued success!

Paris Labs currently hosts the Helia service on a dedicated server at Dedibox, a leading French hoster. With a rapidly growing database, Helia needs to make frequent backups, to be able to recover from a disaster. So far, Helia had been using mysqldump to export the data into flat files. The exported files are then zipped, and sent over to a remote server. Apart from being a completely manual process, this process has a major downside: exporting a large database with mysqldump can take a long time, during which the database is stopped, putting the entire site off-line. Also, recovering a database after a disaster from dumped SQL files is a long process, which would create even more downtime for the service.

As a member of the Sun Startup Essentials program, ParisLabs connected with the Sun-Oracle ISV Engineering team to come up with a solution that would create an acceptable security level for their data backup strategy, with minimum service downtime and minimum hardware/software additions. We ruled out, to start with, the option of setting up a slave MySQL server to act as a hot backup, which meant a more complicated architecture, more administration and a bigger infrastructure cost that the start-up could not afford. Instead we explore the possibility to leverage the novel ZFS filesystem included in Solaris 10.

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Tuesday Nov 03, 2009

System performance issues? Check the I/O

Did you ever have a performance problem and not know where to start looking? Well, who didn't? In such a situation, it is important to perform a proper monitoring of the system and resist the immediate urge to blame the processing power --the storage subsystem is often overlooked. Now that I spoiled the suspense giving away the answer, give me 5 minutes to illustrate this with a typical example. Why typical? Because this is a case I meet quite often with startup companies who rightly concentrate on their core business and not on their IT infrastructure --that's what we are here for.

One of our partners, Squid Solutions, recently reported a performance problem with an Oracle database; they had engaged our team as part of the Sun Startup Essentials support program. Squid Solutions makes a software called Nautilus that performs intensive analytics on database systems, whatever their kind or size. They call Nautilus an SQL Knowledge Engine because it models data and business knowledge, and then automatically generates SQL code to execute the data processing tasks. Nautilus is sold as a service performed by Squid's engineers as Customer Intelligence projects.

So, Squid Solutions had purchased a brand-new Sun Fire X2250 server --quad-core Intel Xeon with 4 GB of RAM, running Solaris 10--, and was experiencing poor performance --much lower than their old system of previous generation-- when executing a read-n-write intensive workload on the database. When I first got on the server, something jumped right to my eyes…

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Thursday Sep 10, 2009

Sun powers Symeos online identity management platform

"Thanks to Sun technology, we are continuing to bring innovative identity management solutions to market and driving growth."
Hervé Prot, CEO, Symeos

Specialized in Web services security, Symeos provides online identity management, federated authentication services and single sign-on technologies for customers across multiple industries, including banking and finance. With the support of Sun, Symeos has developed a new scalable identity management product called EGO to support the more than 10 million expected users.

Read the whole story at  to learn how the combinaison of Sun systems, storage and software reduced the Symeos development cost by 60%, delivered a 99.999% infrastructure availability and improved Web application server performance by 92%. Symeos is a member of the Sun Startup Essentials program.

Thursday Aug 13, 2009

Planet Work offers bargain hosting on Solaris Zones, ZFS

Adapted from this (French) Sun Startup Essentials blog piece.

Planet Work is a Paris-based web hoster that has been operating for about 10 years now. For some time, they had been looking at virtualization technologies with the goal of offering a very competitive --low price, high availability-- entry-point hosting solution. As a member of the Sun Startup Essentials program, Planet Work worked over the past year with a local engineer in our team to evaluate what Solaris had to offer in the virtualization space. They were not disappointed.

Read on to learn how Planet Work could deploy a new iServer Solaris offering, targeted at startup developers, with a low entry-price of 19€ per month, automated ZFS-based backup service and a low cost of operation.

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Thursday Jul 02, 2009

Sun Startup Essentials powers 6rounds video platform

GixOO is launching this week its 6rounds video communication service. The coolest web 2.0 venture I have seen in quite some time! As GixOO co-founder and COO Ilan Leibovich puts it, 6rounds is a rich, interactive and personalized video chat platform that takes shared experiences and real-time collaboration to a whole new level. 6rounds combines webcams, social activities, and interactive zones to offer its users an exciting variety of experiences that they enjoy and share together. The video experience present users with broad range of opportunities: from watching videos, playing real-time games, listening to music, co-facebooking or youtubing, to shopping together and beyond. Users are also encouraged to exchange gifts, start webcam effects and use the tips machine which provides ice-breakers and advice about their chat partner.

6rounds is the first product built on the GixOO live social platform, initially developped on the LAMP stack. As a member of the Sun Startup Essentials program, GixOO connected with Sun's ISV Engineering team to test the scalability of their platform on SAMP…

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How open innovation and technology adoption translates to business value, with stories from our developer support work at Oracle's ISV Engineering.



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