Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category


Note: This is the least useful article I’ve ever written.  If you haven’t read my technical articles, do yourself a favour: skip this and read those other articles instead.  There are 27,492 vaguely (or not so vaguely) angsty, bitter, pseudo-introspective articles published to Hacker News every day; there’s barely one marginally useful technical article a [...]

Posted on December 29, 2014 at 19:24 by wesolows · Permalink · Comments Closed
In: Uncategorized

Golang is Trash

In the process of working on getting cgo to work on illumos, I learned that golang is trash.  I should mention that I have no real opinion on the language itself; I’m not a languages person (C will do, thanks), and that’s not the part of the system I have experience with anyway.  Rather, the [...]

Posted on December 29, 2014 at 19:06 by wesolows · Permalink · Comments Closed
In: Uncategorized

libsunw_ssl, or, How SmartOS Avoids Sadness

The recent hubbub around CVE-2014-0160 (aka “heartbleed“) has led to a few questions about SmartOS‘s use of OpenSSL in the platform image.  This is actually a very interesting side trip that has nothing to do with cryptography and very little to do with security; instead, it affords an opportunity to talk about ensuring correctness in [...]

Posted on April 10, 2014 at 17:47 by wesolows · Permalink · Comments Closed
In: Uncategorized

On Disk Failure

And we never failed to fail It was the easiest thing to do – Stephen Stills, Rick and Michael Curtis; “Southern Cross” (1981) With Brian Beach’s article on disk drive failure continuing to stir up popular press and criticism, I’d like to discuss a much-overlooked facet of disk drive failure.  Namely, the failure itself.  Ignoring for a [...]

Posted on February 20, 2014 at 22:45 by wesolows · Permalink · Comments Closed
In: Uncategorized

Anonymous Tracing on SmartOS

One of the lesser-used features of DTrace is anonymous tracing: the ability to trace events that occur after early boot has completed but before there is an opportunity to log into the system and start tracing.  As Bryan says: you rarely need this facility, but when you do, you REALLY need it.  Anonymous tracing relies [...]

Posted on December 28, 2013 at 02:17 by wesolows · Permalink · One Comment
In: Uncategorized

Manta: What Lies Beneath

If you haven’t already read Mark’s introduction to Joyent’s new Manta service, you need to.  There are plenty of exciting elements of this service, from basics like strong consistency to the lovingly crafted data processing abstractions that allow you to bring compute to your data.  As with any large system, though, Manta’s visible interface is [...]

Posted on June 25, 2013 at 13:00 by wesolows · Permalink · Comments Closed
In: Uncategorized