Stuff Yaron Finds Interesting

Technology, Politics, Food, Finance, etc.

The water is boiling – American Democracy

For a long time now I’ve been convinced that America democracy is dying, if not dead. Our will to be a great democracy got broken somewhere along the line. Instead, all the evidence shows me that this country works exclusively for the small ruling elite who run the world’s corporations.
Read More

A mac fail? Please Help me with remote desktop

I want to get a mac laptop for my wife but I want to be able to use it as a remote terminal for my iMac upstairs.

There doesn’t appear to be a decent solution for this problem on the mac. VNC is a joke. It will just take my 24 inch iMac screen and shrink it down to the laptop’s screen size. And yes I have played around with smart zoom but it’s really painful.

Isn’t there an equivalent for the mac to Microsoft’s outstanding Remote Desktop Connection application and RDP protocol?

For what it’s worth I signed up to be notified when AquaConnect releases their mac remote desktop product which is based on RDP but they aren’t even announcing dates.

Any ideas or am I just out of luck?

Recovering from self inflicted data corruption – a summary

Of late I have been torturing myself about the question of - even if I build on top of a highly reliable storage service like Windows Azure Table Service do I still need to worry about backups, versioning, journals and such? The answer would seem to be, yes, I do. Mostly because even if the table store works perfectly, I’m still going to have bugs I introduced that are going to hork my data.

In fact what I specifically need to do is:

  1. Lobby the Windows Azure Table Storage team to add undelete for tables so if I accidentally blow away one of my tables I have some hope (oh and ACL’s would be nice too)
  2. Be very careful about how I update my schemas
  3. Implement a command journal (and be clear about their limitations)
  4. If time permits implement tombstoning
  5. If I’m feeling really wacko implement my own versioning system on top of the table store (or just backups if I’m feeling only slightly wacko)
  6. Put into place a realistic plan to take advantage of all these features while keeping in mind the limitations of these techniques.

The links in the previous text are to the other articles in this series that I wrote for my blog. Those articles are:

Implementing Versioning in Windows Azure Table Store

In a previous article I argued that I needed some kind of journaling/backup for my Windows Azure Tables in order to handle my own screw ups. In this article I re-examine the value of versioning for recovering from self inflicted data corruption. Discuss backups as a possible substitute for versioning. Look at what versioning might look like if added as a native feature of Windows Azure Table Store and finish up by proposing a design that would let me implement versioning on top of Windows Azure Table Store.

This article is part of a series. Click here to see summary and complete list of articles in the series.

Read More

The limits of recovering from application logic failures

m4s0n501

I have been blathering on all week about how to prepare for application logic failures in services and how to potentially recover from the damage those errors cause. I have yammered on about command journals (twice), tombstones, versioning etc. But none of these techniques is magical. They all have very serious limits that mean in most non-trivial cases the best one can really do is say to the user ”Here is the command I screwed up, here are the specific mistakes made, here is what the values should have been, do you want to repair this damage?” Below I explore three specific examples of those limits that I call: read syndrome, put syndrome and e-tag effect.

This article is part of a series. Click here to see summary and complete list of articles in the series.

Read More