Talks I have given

Increasingly, people have expressed the strange urge to binge-watch my presentations. This potentially self-destructive behavior seems likely to have unwanted side-effects like spontaneous righteous indignation, superfluous historical metaphor, and near-lethal exposure to tangential anecdote — and yet I find myself compelled to enable it by collecting my erstwhile scattered talks. While this blog entry won’t [...]

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Posted on February 3, 2018 at 10:43 pm by bmc · Permalink · Comments Closed
In: Uncategorized

The sudden death and eternal life of Solaris

As had been rumored for a while, Oracle effectively killed Solaris on Friday. When I first saw this, I had assumed that this was merely a deep cut, but in talking to Solaris engineers still at Oracle, it is clearly much more than that. It is a cut so deep as to be fatal: the [...]

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Posted on September 4, 2017 at 12:30 pm by bmc · Permalink · Comments Closed
In: Uncategorized

From Prometheus to Sisyphus

When Apple announced their new file system, APFS, in June, I hustled to be in the front row of the WWDC presentation, questions with the presenters, and then the open Q&A session. I took a week to write up my notes which turned into as 12 page behemoth of a blog post — longer than my college [...]

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Posted on February 12, 2017 at 10:23 am by ahl · Permalink · Comments Closed
In: DTrace

Reflections on Systems We Love

Last Tuesday, several months of preparation came to fruition in the inaugural Systems We Love. You never know what’s going to happen the first time you get a new kind of conference together (especially one as broad as this one!) but it was, in a word, amazing. The content was absolutely outstanding, with attendee after [...]

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Posted on December 21, 2016 at 1:16 pm by bmc · Permalink · Comments Closed
In: Uncategorized

DTrace at Home

I had been procrastinating making the family holiday card. It was a combination of having a lot on my plate and dreading the formulation of our annual note recapping the year; there were some great moments, but I’m glad I don’t have to do 2016 again. It was just before midnight and either I’d make [...]

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Posted on December 17, 2016 at 9:32 pm by ahl · Permalink · Comments Closed
In: DTrace

Submitting to Systems We Love

We’ve been overwhelmed by the positive response to Systems We Love! As simple as this concept is, Systems We Love — like Papers We Love, !!Con and others that inspired it — has tapped into a current of enthusiasm. Adam Leventhal captured this zeitgeist in a Hacker News comment: What catches our collective attention are [...]

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Posted on September 30, 2016 at 2:57 pm by bmc · Permalink · Comments Closed
In: Uncategorized

Systems We Love

One of the exciting trends of the past few years is the emergence of Papers We Love. I have long been an advocate of journal clubs, but I have also found that discussion groups can stagnate when confined to a fixed group or a single domain; by broadening the participants and encouraging presenters to select [...]

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Posted on September 26, 2016 at 2:55 pm by bmc · Permalink · Comments Closed
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Turtles on the Wire: Understanding how the OS uses the Modern NIC

The modern networking card (NIC) has evolved quite a bit from the simple Ethernet cards of yesteryear. As such, the way that the operating system uses them has had to evolve in tandem. Gone are the simple 10 Mbit/s copper or (BNC) devices. Instead, 1 Gb/s is common-place in the home, 10 Gb/s rules the [...]

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Posted on September 15, 2016 at 10:06 am by rm · Permalink · Comments Closed
In: Miscellaneous

Hacked by a bug?

Early this afternoon, I had just recorded a wide-ranging episode of Arrested DevOps with the incomparable Bridget Kromhout and noticed that I had a flurry of Twitter mentions, all in reaction to this tweet of mine. There was just one problem: I didn’t tweet it. With my account obviously hacked, I went into fight-or-flight mode [...]

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Posted on September 13, 2016 at 12:11 am by bmc · Permalink · Comments Closed
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TCP puzzlers

This post was cross-posted to the Joyent blog. It’s been said that we don’t really understand a system until we understand how it fails. Despite having written a (toy) TCP implementation in college and then working for several years in industry, I’m continuing to learn more deeply how TCP works — and how it fails. [...]

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Posted on August 18, 2016 at 9:02 am by dap · Permalink · Comments Closed
In: Uncategorized