OnePlus One – Un-boxing and a first review

It’s here! It’s been here for 5 days already, and I’m ecstatic! I have the OnePlus One on my desk right now. This was the un-boxing, and below you have a quick initial review.

LogoOPO

When I first saw the specs and presentation I was baffled. The only thing that scared me for a second was the size, considering I’m coming from a 5″ device to a 6″+, and as expected it felt weird the first two days, but I got used to it.  The packaging is brilliant, the device comes packed nicely as you can see in the images, the only thing missing is a headset, but it’s not mandatory 🙂

The Hardware: kicks ass! I’ve been pushing it’s limits with apps that used to bring my SIII to a halt because the temperature was too high (e.g. Sky Force), but the OnePlus One did not feel warmer than my hands warmed it up.I can feel the 3 Gigs of RAM, and all the apps are a lot smoother running directly from the phone’s 64GB internal memory, rather than from the class 10 SD Card I was using.

The Battery: Holding steady, no complaints there yet. A full load, after a complete battery drain carried me completely through the second day, and lasted well into the night. Unplugged at 7AM and plugged back in around 1AM. And I did push it’s buttons during that second day! The 3100 mAh demon allowed me to continuously play music on it for about 10 hours yesterday. Youtube playlists (full wifi and screen on) for about 3.5 hours, and TuneIn Radio (wifi streaming, display off) for the remainder of time.   PS: The charger is simply beautiful!

011

The Operating System? CyanogenMod Powered! I have been using CM for quite a while now on my other Android devices, but CM11s just brought me Android KitKat  4.4.4 and I simply love it! OTA updates are quick and apparently they fix issues from what I’ve been reading. I had a single issue of not being able to hear calls at one point, which was fixed by a quick reboot. I can’t say it was the OS’s fault or if I was playing with it too much, and I was not able to reproduce it yet. I’m not holding my breath.

A quick benchmark with AnTuTu confirmed the title of “Flagship killer” this device has received…

010

Invites ? I don’t have any yet, and some people already expressed themselves, so, without promising anything, leave a comment, and I’ll hand them out when they arrive.

Sysadmin day!

Sysadmin DayOh Heeeeeloooooooo! And, like every year, the last Friday of July is marked as SysAdmin day! Give a hug to your sysadmin, get him coffee, give him a smile! They work all year round to get everything up and running around the office, and they surely deserve it!

sysadmin unpacked the server for this website from its box, installed an operating system, patched it for security, made sure the power and air conditioning was working in the server room, monitored it for stability, set up the software, and kept backups in case anything went wrong. All to serve this webpage.

sysadmin installed the routers, laid the cables, configured the networks, set up the firewalls, and watched and guided the traffic for each hop of the network that runs over copper, fiber optic glass, and even the air itself to bring the Internet to your computer. All to make sure the webpage found its way from the server to your computer.

sysadmin makes sure your network connection is safe, secure, open, and working. A sysadmin makes sure your computer is working in a healthy way on a healthy network.

sysadmin takes backups to guard against disaster both human and otherwise, holds the gates against security threats and crackers, and keeps the printers going no matter how many copies of the tax code someone from Accounting prints out.

sysadmin worries about spam, viruses, spyware, but also power outages, fires and floods.

When the email server goes down at 2 AM on a Sunday, your sysadmin is paged, wakes up, and goes to work.

sysadmin is a professional, who plans, worries, hacks, fixes, pushes, advocates, protects and creates good computer networks, to get you your data, to help you do work — to bring the potential of computing ever closer to reality.

So if you can read this, thank your sysadmin — and know he or she is only one of dozens or possibly hundreds whose work brings you the email from your aunt on the West Coast, the instant message from your son at college, the free phone call from the friend in Australia, and this webpage.

Friday, July 26th, 2013, is the 14th annual System Administrator Appreciation Day. On this special international day, give your System Administrator something that shows that you truly appreciate their hard work and dedication. (All day Friday, 24 hours, your own local time-zone).

Let’s face it, System Administrators get no respect 364 days a year. This is the day that all fellow System Administrators across the globe, will be showered with expensive sports cars and large piles of cash in appreciation of their diligent work. But seriously, we are asking for a nice token gift and some public acknowledgement. It’s the least you could do.

Consider all the daunting tasks and long hours (weekends too.) Let’s be honest, sometimes we don’t know our System Administrators as well as they know us. Remember this is one day to recognize your System Administrator for their workplace contributions and to promote professional excellence. Thank them for all the things they do for you and your business.

Show your appreciation!

I used to be a sysadmin. 😀

Steelcase is hiring talents

About 7 months ago I got hired by a company I did not know much at the time, but I learned to love and consider my second home. The name of the company is Steelcase, it was founded in Grand Rapids, Michigan, US in 1912, and they just opened a Global Business Center in Cluj-Napoca. Since November 2011, the GBC grew quickly from 0 to 50 employees in a heart beat,  but we still have several positions open before reaching the desired critical mass that will allow us to become the excellence center we desire to be for our colleagues all around the world, in various fields like Finance, IT, Application support, Web Application Development etc.

Steelcase is one of the world’s leaders in office furniture manufacturing and currently develops products related to interior architecture, furniture and technology. As I said above, we just turned 100 years old in 2012, so we have lots and lots of celebrations going around all year long, celebrations you can read about on http://100.steelcase.com.

I’ve personally met people working in this company for decades, (as long as 20 or 30 years) both in North America and Europe, so that, added to our considerable corporate experience gained in the past 100 years should make a very good indicator about the type of company we are. I am going to repeat this article over the following weeks with different job descriptions, so stay tuned!

Today, I’m going to present you the Job Description for the two IT Service Desk Analyst positions we have open:

GBC Cluj-Napoca /  Steelcase IT – Service-Desk Analyst EN/FR or EN/DE
Location : Cluj-Napoca (RO) (local contract)
Languages : Fluency in English and French or English and German is a must

Description:
  • Respond to requests for technical assistance using a phone or electronically
  • Diagnose and resolve technical hardware and software issues
  • Research questions using available information resources
  • Advise user on appropriate action
  • Follow standard help desk procedures
  • Administer help desk software
  • Redirect issues  to appropriate solution groups if necessary
  • Identify and escalate situations requiring urgent attention (Major Incidents)
  • Track and route incidents and requests
  • Document resolutions in knowledge base (Incident Management by exception)
  • Stay current with the company’s IT systems changes and updates

Requirements:

  • IT or Technical University degree or student
  • Fluency in English plus French or German
  • Strong Windows OS and MS Office skills
  • Problem solving skills
  • High motivation, flexibility and productivity
  • Good communication skills and team spirit.

If this sounds like something you can do, or one of your friends can do, drop me an e-mail [ marius @ perijoc . com ], post a comment on this post, or find a way to contact me, and I’ll be happy to have a chat with you and explain in more detail what this is all about.

* This article was in no way sponsored or requested by Steelcase, or it’s subsidiaries, and was written by my own volition 😉

Sysadmin day!

Sysadmin DayOh Heeeeeloooooooo! And, like every year, the last Friday of July is marked as SysAdmin day! Give a hug to your sysadmin, get him coffee, give him a smile! They work all year round to get everything up and running around the office, and they surely deserve it!

sysadmin unpacked the server for this website from its box, installed an operating system, patched it for security, made sure the power and air conditioning was working in the server room, monitored it for stability, set up the software, and kept backups in case anything went wrong. All to serve this webpage.

sysadmin installed the routers, laid the cables, configured the networks, set up the firewalls, and watched and guided the traffic for each hop of the network that runs over copper, fiber optic glass, and even the air itself to bring the Internet to your computer. All to make sure the webpage found its way from the server to your computer.

sysadmin makes sure your network connection is safe, secure, open, and working. A sysadmin makes sure your computer is working in a healthy way on a healthy network.

sysadmin takes backups to guard against disaster both human and otherwise, holds the gates against security threats and crackers, and keeps the printers going no matter how many copies of the tax code someone from Accounting prints out.

sysadmin worries about spam, viruses, spyware, but also power outages, fires and floods.

When the email server goes down at 2 AM on a Sunday, your sysadmin is paged, wakes up, and goes to work.

sysadmin is a professional, who plans, worries, hacks, fixes, pushes, advocates, protects and creates good computer networks, to get you your data, to help you do work — to bring the potential of computing ever closer to reality.

So if you can read this, thank your sysadmin — and know he or she is only one of dozens or possibly hundreds whose work brings you the email from your aunt on the West Coast, the instant message from your son at college, the free phone call from the friend in Australia, and this webpage.

Friday, July 27th, 2012, is the 13th annual System Administrator Appreciation Day. On this special international day, give your System Administrator something that shows that you truly appreciate their hard work and dedication. (All day Friday, 24 hours, your own local time-zone).

Let’s face it, System Administrators get no respect 364 days a year. This is the day that all fellow System Administrators across the globe, will be showered with expensive sports cars and large piles of cash in appreciation of their diligent work. But seriously, we are asking for a nice token gift and some public acknowledgement. It’s the least you could do.

Consider all the daunting tasks and long hours (weekends too.) Let’s be honest, sometimes we don’t know our System Administrators as well as they know us. Remember this is one day to recognize your System Administrator for their workplace contributions and to promote professional excellence. Thank them for all the things they do for you and your business.

Show your appreciation!

I used to be a sysadmin.

The night before Christmas, in a sysadmins shoes

Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse.
The data was all safe, protected with care,
In hopes that year-end bonuses soon would be there.

The servers were nestled all safe in their racks
Protected from malware and vile forms of hacks.
The data all encrypted, with a nice complex key,
Christmas OrnamentThe software came, of course, with a great big huge fee.

Policy was written, compliance was done,
That had all been the exact opposite of fun.
Systems were patched, and locked one and all,
The team had done well, and they had stood tall.

Their audit was done, validation complete.
Their systems all ready, documentation all neat.
They had made it through ‘nother holiday season,
And were ready to cruise, it all stood to reason.

When from intrusion detection arose such a clatter,
The Admin sprang from his browser, watching Lohan get fatter.
Away to the consoles, he flew in a dash,
Checking faults and tripwire, computing their hash.

The light from the flat screens just made the place glow
The Admin then cursed, it could not be so.
Systems were crashing, the network was down,
It seemed almost like he was ready to drown.

College was easy, he got As and Bs,
These attacks were relentless,from overseas.
They seemed to be everywhere, attacks all at once,
They made him feel just like a big dunce.

His training took over, he set a grim face,
He quietly looked forward, to his happy place.
Cutting off systems, segmenting them away,
He was rolling right now, no time to play.

The pager just beeped and phones they did ring,
Event responders the noise then did bring.
Another server was hit, and suddenly dropped
The Denial of Service attack was not stopped.

The admin felt helpless, and just needed a lift,
Like something from Claus, please one early gift.
When, what his wondering eyes they did spy,
An extra program running, and then he knew why.
That’s when he knew, he just knew, oh of course

This had all started with just one Trojan Horse.
Prolly came to a user through his e-mail,
Policy and training, to no avail.

He marched through the servers, saw them as bots
Chuckling now, thinking “that’s all you gots?”
Malware from servers, each one did he cull,
Sending them one at a time right to dev/null.

Now he was rolling, and almost chuckling with glee,
He looked up with dismay, what did he see?
The retail server was hit, and crashing, amok,
He SSHed in, but could only say “rats”.

He saw very quickly that they now had root,
And hoped that he would not get the boot.
As he sat back in his chair, and reached for a Dew,
He knew the primary site was all through.

He knew then and there it would be a long night,
So he switched everything to the failover site.
Laying his cursor on that one little app,
He clicked only once and prod1 took a nap.

He sprang for his phone, to his team gave a twitter,
Failover was done, and he had not been a quitter.
The net was a mess, the farm had been bought,
But in the end, it had not been for naught.

The systems had done for what they’d been built,
They’d been prodded and poked, and finally said “tilt”.
He was glad it had not been a resume generating event.
His last thought for the night was for the attackers to get bent

His relief came too little, and seemed way too late,
He had pulled eves alone, and faced his sole fate.
He briefed the next crew, with all he did know
And went outside, to fresh fallen snow.

He sprang to his Honda, and cranked up the tunes,
Wishing for beach, and wind tossed sand dunes
He said as he drove down the road to the night,
Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good-night.

Credits go to securityweek.com, via Tibi.

ITIL v3 Foundation

I just had my ITIL v3 Foundation certification yesterday and I passed with flying colors (YAY!). The Foundation exam is quite easy, basically, you just need to attend the training and go over the study materials thoroughly a couple of times.

ITIL v3 (IT Infrastructure Library) is accepted worldwide as the most effective and efficient framework for managing and controlling the quality and costs of delivering IT services and keeping them aligned with business needs and ever changing business direction.

While studying, I stumbled upon some learning aids created by Marco Cattaneo from Charles Sturt University, Australia. At first I was a bit reticent with them, but he manages to explain the concepts fairly well and proved to be of invaluable assistance to me considering I did not attend the ITIL v3 Foundation training.

Below, you can find a list with some of the movies he uploaded on Youtube, for the Foundation certification:

1st Module

  1. Introduction to IT Management
  2. ITIL v3 – Good practices
  3. ITIL v3 – Service
  4. ITIL v3 – Service management
  5. ITIL v3 – Function and processes
  6. ITIL v3 – Processes and theirs characterestics

2nd Module

  1. ITIL v3 – Service lifecycle model
  2. ITIL v3 – Service Strategy
  3. ITIL v3 – Service Design
  4. ITIL v3 – Service Design II
  5. ITIL v3 – Service Transition
  6. ITIL v3 – Service Transition II
  7. ITIL v3 – Service Operation
  8. ITIL v3 – Service Operation II
  9. ITIL v3 – Continual Service Improvement

3rd Module

  1. ITIL v3 – Utility and warranty
  2. ITIL v3 – Assets, resources and capabilities
  3. ITIL v3 – Service portfolio
  4. ITIL v3 – Service catalog
  5. ITIL v3 – IT Governance
  6. ITIL v3 – Business case
  7. ITIL v3 – Risk
  8. ITIL v3 – Service provider
  9. ITIL v3 – Supplier
  10. ITIL v3 – Service Level Agreement – SLA
  11. ITIL v3 – Operational Level Agreement – OLA
  12. ITIL v3 – Underpinng Contract – UC
  13. ITIL v3 – Service Design Package – SDP
  14. ITIL v3 – Availability
  15. ITIL v3 – Service Knowledge Management System – SKMS
  16. ITIL v3 – Configuation Item
  17. ITIL v3 – Configuration Management System – CMS
  18. ITIL v3 – Definitive Media Library – DML
  19. ITIL v3 – Service change
  20. ITIL v3 – Change categories
  21. ITIL v3 – Release unit
  22. ITIL v3 – 7 Rs of change management
  23. ITIL v3 – Event
  24. ITIL v3 – Alert
  25. ITIL v3 – Incident
  26. ITIL v3 – Impact, urgency and priority
  27. ITIL v3 – Service Request
  28. ITIL v3 – Problem
  29. ITIL v3 – Workaround
  30. ITIL v3 – Known Error – KE
  31. ITIL v3 – Known Error Database – KEDB
  32. ITIL v3 – Communication
  33. ITIL v3- Service Assets
  34. ITIL v3 – Release policy

4th Module

  1. ITIL v3 – Value creation through Services
  2. ITIL v3 – 4 Ps of IT Service Management
  3. ITIL v3 – The 5 Service Design Aspects
  4. ITIL v3 – Deming’s cycle – PDCA
  5. ITIL v3 – Continual Service Improvement Model

Good luck with your studies!

[Howto] Fix Download Unsuccessful on the Android Market

Sometime ago I decided I wanted to switch to an Android Powered smartphone. I started looking around, weighing the offers on the market, device prices, subscription prices and so on, and I finally decided on a Samsung Galaxy S which is definitely brilliant!It has

Of course it has a few glitches, the Android system is not yet as strong as the iPhone  system, but it’s getting there in a quick pace.

One of these glitches I stumbled upon, and finally got a nice resolution to, was trying to install applications from the Android Market, and getting an “Download Unsuccessful” error. I spent quite some time on different forums and mailing lists trying to fix the dreadful error which at first I thought it was Samsung related, but it’s actually an Android Market bug, and it is solvable with just a few taps. You don’t need to do a factory reset, or re-install your firmware.

You need to go on your phone under Settings,  go to Applications, tap on Manage application, from the menu select Filter all, and all your applications will be listed nicely.

You need to clear data* for the following applications:

  • Checkin service
  • Download manager
  • Google apps
  • Google talk service

    And you need to clear cache* for:

    • Market

      *) If the “clear data” or “clear cache” buttons are grayed out, no need to worry, there just isn’t any data to clear. Also, make sure you do not clear the data from your market application.

      Have fun with your Android powered phone, I’m still extremely fond of it, and still treat it as a new toy even after almost two months.

      Plesk Bandwidth reporting error

      I managed to bump my head into this situation a few times, and I think some of you have too, or will in the future.

      The DomainsTraffic table in the Plesk psa database gets a weird value, usually quite huge, and the traffic stats for a certain domain will skyrocket overnight from values of a couple hundred MB’s usually to several GB’s. Domains get suspended, customers get pissed and the “techies”  got work to do.

      It’s actually easy to find the problem and fix it:

      Log into your Plesk server as root, enter mysql and find the domain in question using the psa database:

      [root@nl-ams-sp1 ~]# mysql -uadmin -p`cat /etc/psa/.psa.shadow`
      mysql> use psa;
      mysql> select * from domains where name = "wirelessisfun.com";

      Find the day where the records got corrupted and are causing the erroneous report:

      mysql> select dom_id,date,http_in,http_out from DomainsTraffic where dom_id =(select id from domains where name = "wirelessisfun.com");

      This will output quite some data, but the culprit line will be really obvious:

      +——–+————+———+————–+
      | dom_id | date | http_in | http_out |
      +——–+————+———+————–+
      [snip]
      | 316 | 2010-08-02 | 0 | 472399336 |
      | 316 | 2010-08-03 | 0 | 491239251 |
      | 316 | 2010-08-04 | 0 | 470982351 |
      | 316 | 2010-08-05 | 0 | 470829065 |
      | 316 | 2010-08-06 | 0 | 493939844 |
      | 316 | 2010-08-07 | 0 | 454701317 |
      | 316 | 2010-08-08 | 0 | 100221521161 |
      | 316 | 2010-08-09 | 0 | 144318797 |
      +——–+————+———+————–+

      Now, that you know the corrupted line, just update the http_out value with something similar to the days before, I used the exact value as the previous day.
      Make sure you replace “wirelessisfun.com” with the actual domain name, and the date value with the date in question:

      mysql> update DomainsTraffic set http_out = "454701317" where dom_id =(select id from domains where name = "wirelessisfun.com") AND date = "2010-08-08";

      The MySQL output should be something like:

      Query OK, 1 row affected (0.03 sec)
      Rows matched: 1 Changed: 1 Warnings: 0

      Now that the record for the domain traffic has been fixed, you can wait for the statistics script to run during the night, and the clients traffic will be updated automatically, or you can simply re-run the statistics for that domain from your bash prompt like this:

      [root@nl-ams-sp1 ~]# /usr/local/psa/admin/sbin/statistics --calculate-one --domain-name=wirelessisfun.com

      Simple enough, right? Use the above tip at your own risk, it worked for me everytime.