Archive for the 'Nox' Category
Well, officially today it’s time for me to say goodbye to my Zimbra 6. True, akin to Scalix, Zimbra has also served me immensely well for 3 years, but I had enough java problem lately which caused my CPU usage jump to 100% and after thoroughly compared the latest Zimbra, Scalix and other email collaboration, I’d chosen Zarafa this time.
So, why Zarafa? During my one week of testing, I’d found out that Zarafa consumed less of my CPU’s resource, easy to be deployed and the configuration seems more straight forward. Well, it could be because that I had downloaded and used the appliance version for my small deployment (headache with custom install) and with some tuning on the postfix’s main.cf file, my new email’s system is ready to roll.
- Download Zarafa Appliance
- Upload Zarafa OVF and power on it
- Change to static IP, hostname and domain
- Configure smarthost(optional) e.x smtp.gmail.com
- Set smtp_use_tls=yes in your main.cf
- Set your smarthost to use port 587 in main.cf
- Restart postfix and send or receive your first email
Like I said, for small deployment it can be completed very fast. Bottom line is the performance of this Zarafa contemplate me replacing my 3 years old Zimbra but still I want to thanks Zimbra for all what it did before. Nevertheless, I recommend you to do enough test on your Zarafa before you plan to move it to your production. We have had deployed a small and mid size of Scalix and Zimbra for our customers before and with proper planning, both can serve the purpose really well. But we never had experienced with Zarafa and that’s why, do enough research (here) and test it as much as you can so that you don’t make a wrong choice.
p/s: for user migration from Zimbra to Zarafa, I had to used imapsync.
While searching Vyatta’s documentation for my design purpose, I found out that Vyatta now also has their own technical certification program. There are two certifications available and yes it’s has a multiple choice of questions and plus a hands-on lab. Well, I never sit for the exam yet but I do know that it’s not easy to configure Vyatta if you don’t have enough Linux, networking and Cisco skills. Nevertheless, you can read more about these certifications here.
While designing one of my latest project, I found that, there are few challenges that will trouble my team to deliver everything before the given deadline (less than a month). Let alone other project solutions like Microsoft, Bakbone and Falconstor, there are couple of VMware’s projects with multiple solution integration in the queue and with only eleven engineers, brainstorming is my best platform to get started. Of course, there are multiple ways on how to handle your project. Different people or organization would have a different way to deal with the situation. But most of the time, we anticipate this and below is how me and my team prepare and deal with all the given challenges.
- VMware View + SRM + vCops
- VMWare View + P2V
- VMware vSphere + P2V + vCloud + SRM
By brainstorming, we normally will able to list out all information below and associate all the challenges with a proper strategy.
- Scope of Work
- Work flow
SCOPE of WORK
Remember, a silly mistake such as “thing that out of scope” can cause a big trouble at the later stage especially during sign-off. So, I tend to get the list for each area as much as I can so that I would not miss out any single item. Base on my experience, things like SOP document, actual no. of P2V migration are some of the scopes that we may overseen and require additional mandays to do it. And if your schedule is very tight, this of course will impact your project’s sign-off. Another thing is, we may need to highlight user about the application server that we are going to P2V. The challenge that we normally have during P2V is, customer always want us to take the responsibility for the application as well and not only for the OS migration. So, please be careful with that too.
This is the method for me to identify the thing that is hidden, dependent and risky. Generally, a correct procedure or flow for each of the work stream would ease the installation process and rarely giving us so much trouble. But take example from vCloud installation, with so much components (vCenter, vDC or cell, organization, vApp, catalog and Edge) which dependent to each other, meticulous preparation for each process may be required. Once we slip, we may need to do everything over and over again. Try this and believe me, you will get something out of it.
Then, we should identify which challenges that we normally can and cannot control for example “documentation and hardware readiness”. Most of the time, documentation would not give us any trouble, at least this what I have had experienced before and matter of fact, it can be completed within a day or two if you already have a nice and comprehensive template. Trust me, things that we can control it’s really down to us.
So, what about things that we cannot control such as “hardware readiness”? Unlike others, my company only involve with the software and service stuff and most of the time hardware scope will fall under customer or hardware’s vendor. Normally, we need to wait four to six weeks for the hardware to be delivered before we can start with the implementation and this indeed sometime can delay our project’s deliverable.
Finally, we reach the most important part which is strategy. Of course, strategy require an action. But it’s useless if after you list out everything and knowing all the risks and dependencies, but then you match or face it with inappropriate strategy. Take these two simple scenarios as below:
- Scenario 1: Colleague A can finish all documentation within a day or two (deadline), while colleague B may require a week.
- Scenario 2: Colleague A knowing everything about vSphere solution but having some difficulty to complete it within a given deadline (Perceiver). While colleague B is a Judger and well organized.
If deadline is your main concern, judger is the right person for both scenarios and if you still assign the task to someone who is perceiver although you foresee the risk, please get ready with the outcome and prepare for the plan B. For me, these last two months is the most challenging one and always require my team to meet the deadline and that is why, I offer myself to take all responsibility for all documentation for the project.
Another thing is, specialization also play a major role for any tight project. You would not let some one who is better with VDI to do SRM project aren’t you? Although they can learn it, think thoroughly and do you feel that this is the best time for them to sit in the office and do some study? Nevertheless, it’s all up to you on how you approach you projects within these two months and for me, brainstorming is a good platform for my team to get started.No comments
This is the month where as everything must be delivered according to demon’s plan. Ridiculous projects with ridiculous deadline I would say but with one apparent reason, “something related to the payment clearance”. Imagine, a three months project must be completed within a week or two, two separate VMware view deployment (250) across multiple branches which will be integrated with SRM and one vCloud Director deployment with SRM also come into the picture. Forget about the P2V migration which is the most time consuming phase during project. Hardware readiness is mainly the culprit and attribute to this stress although technical issues and resources constraint can contribute to this too. Since I also have to face with daily support and operation issues, thing sometime can dramatically change to worse.
Then, a couple of strategy come to take place. But strategy alone would not succeed without action and that’s why my colleagues and subordinates also play some role during this difficulty period. Thanks God, they doing their best right now. Hopefully, my perseverance will always stick with and keep me on the right track so that I will able to deliver and lead all my colleagues to the glory.
Like others, I also don’t want to miss out the opportunity to share about the new release of vSphere 5.1. Many folks were already posted some review on the internet but I would suggest you to get the exact information from here. vMotion without shared storage, DRS - Network Health Check and VDP (VDR Replacement) are some of new features that come together with this version. But as you can see, although there are so many enhancements, in my opinion it’s still lacking the killer one. At least something that can make me say “Wow!”. Nevertheless, vRAM entitlement soon will become a history with the release of this vSphere 5.1 and guess to whom we should thank to?
Thank you VMware you have just made my day and with the Cap inside, I feel everything that I’ve sacrificed before was really paid off.
Coincidentally, the same day I’ve got invitation from VMware Singapore to join them for APJ region (Malaysia). It’s once a lifetime chance for someone like me. But to be honest, ZEN is always in my heart and as long my Boss still want me, I will say “NO”. But hey, may be someone out there could be interested with the opening (infrastructure Consultant). If you’re the one, just please drop me a message.
“I came across your profile on xxxxx and thought that your experience may be suitable for a vacancy we are looking to recruit within VMware APJ.
We are currently looking for a Infrastructure Consultant to join our successful team in Malaysia. This individual will provide customers technical leadership to construct a design, around server, storage, networking and virtualisation, present the design to the clients technical, IT Managers and CXO team to get their buy in on VMware products and technologies. The position requires the ability to execute small projects independently and to implement high-quality technical solutions based on VMware’s server and desktop products.
Would you be keen to explore this opportunity? However, I understand that you may not be seeking opportunities at present and this may not be at the appropriate level you ideally seeking, however, given your experience within the industry, I was interested to know if you knew anyone that may be interested in hearing more about a position of this nature?”