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Dell EMC updates the data centre

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New, enhanced products promise to enable flexibility, lower IT costs, and speed return on investment with Dell EMC PowerEdge 14th generation servers.

At Dell EMC World in Las Vegas this week – the first to combine the annual Dell World and EMC World events – the merged company unveiled new and enhanced software-defined storage (SDS) products that help customers modernise their data centres.

The company said it would allow organisations to lower IT costs, get quicker returns on their investments, and deliver new digital capabilities. The comprehensive software-defined storage portfolio will be further enhanced through support for Dell EMC PowerEdge 14th generation servers, “providing increased levels of performance and scalability across a wide spectrum of applications and workloads”.

The announcement featured updates to ScaleIO, ECS and IsilonSD Edge, along with the introduction of Project Nautilus and expansion of the Ready Node portfolio, to “allow customers to harness the power of Dell EMC as they move from traditional to modern data centers”.

These new software-defined storage capabilities provide a choice of deployment models. Software-defined storage makes the enterprise infrastructure programmable and, therefore, more automated and easier to scale and manage than traditional infrastructure.

Dell EMC provided the following information on portfolio enhancements :

Dell EMC ScaleIO.Next – The leading enterprise-grade software-defined block storage solution, ScaleIO will introduce new .Next features and enhancements.

  • Improved efficiencies by delivering inline compression, enhanced snapshots capabilities, granular thin provisioning and seamless volume migration.
  • Greater performance and reduced latency using the latest Dell EMC PowerEdge 14th generation servers with NVMe flash drives.
  • Simplified management for VMware with support for VMware Virtual Volumes.

Dell EMC ECS Updates – Multiple announcements related to Dell EMC’s scale-out object storage platform, which is designed to provide cloud-scale, global data access to traditional and next-gen apps.

  • ECS.Next, features enhanced enterprise data protection and management capabilities, as well as advanced analytics support. Additionally, ECS software is certified to run on Dell EMC PowerEdge 14th generation servers.
  • The ECS Dedicated Cloud Service enables customers to use ECS through a hybrid cloud model. As a dedicated, single tenant offering hosted in Virtustream datacenters, the ECS Dedicated Cloud Service combines private cloud control with the hands-off operations and agility of the public cloud.

Preview of Project Nautilus: Dell EMC previews a new software-defined solution for storing and analyzing high volumes of streaming IoT data. Project Nautilus enables businesses to make real-time decisions based on streaming device data from across the globe.  Designed to work seamlessly with ECS or Isilon as its resilient storage tier, Project Nautilus brings real-time data processing capabilities to Dell EMC’s unstructured storage platforms.

Dell EMC Ready Nodes portfolio enhancements

  • Dell EMC VMware vSAN Ready Nodes – Now validated for PowerEdge 14th generation servers, these vSAN building blocks are quick and easy to scale and are pre-configured with the required amount of CPU, memory, network, input/output (I/O) controllers and storage to help customers reduce deployment risks and lower costs of their vSAN environments.
  • Dell EMC ScaleIO Ready Nodes – Combines all the power of Dell EMC ScaleIO software with pre-configured Dell EMC PowerEdge servers to deliver performance, scale and flexibility. These easy-to-deploy building blocks will utilize the latest Dell EMC PowerEdge 14th generation servers, including NVMe Drives and NVDIMM options. Software feature updates include simplified management with auto-discovery, streamlined provisioning and storage node-only deployment mode.
  • New Dell EMC Microsoft Storage Spaces Direct Ready Nodes – Pre-configured Dell EMC PowerEdge servers provide the storage density and compute power to maximize the benefits of Storage Spaces Direct and the advanced feature sets in Windows Server 2016. Windows Server Software Defined (WSSD) solutions use Microsoft-validated designs and follow engineering best practices for seamless deployment and a steady-state operational experience. Dell EMC gets customers up and running without lengthy design and build time and offers a single point of contact for implementation and support services.

Dell EMC IsilonSD Edge enhancements – IsilonSD Edge can now be deployed on a single Dell EMC PowerEdge 14th generation server, bringing increased efficiency and a lower-cost entry point for smaller remote offices. The updates to the IsilonSD Edge platform also include support for VMware vSphere version 6.5, as well as deployment using virtual storage platforms like Dell EMC ScaleIO and VMware vSAN.

Jeff Boudreau, President, Storage, Dell EMC, said: “While software-defined everything is a critical piece of IT transformation, the reality is that we’re still early with regard to the ability of enterprises to consume software-only offerings. Offering software-defined storage offerings for on-premises and the cloud, in a variety of deployment models including ready nodes, allows us to meet customers where they are today and take them where they need to be as they transform their IT and their businesses.”

Availability:

  • ECS.Next and ScaleIO.Next have planned global availability in the second half of 2017.
  • ECS Dedicated Cloud Service and IsilonSD Edge have planned global available in the second quarter of 2017.
  • Dell EMC ScaleIO Ready Nodes and Dell EMC VMware vSAN Ready Nodes are available globally today and have planned availability on new Dell EMC PowerEdge 14th generation servers in mid-2017.
  • Dell EMC Microsoft Storage Spaces Direct Ready Nodes have planned global availability in June 2017 and planned global availability on new Dell EMC PowerEdge 14th generation servers in mid-2017.

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Huawei Mate 20 Pro matches camera benchmark record

A benchmark by DxOMark sees the triple-cam handset tie with the P20 Pro for best smartphone camera on the market.

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The Huawei Mate 20 Pro has come out top in a camera benchmark test that assesses all aspects of smartphone camera performance.

DxOMark, which conducts rigorous hardware testing and is trusted as an industry standard for image quality measurements, has just released the results of its in-depth analysis of the Huawei Mate 20 Pro smartphone camera. 

The Huawei Mate 20 Pro is the Chinese manufacturer’s latest top-end device. Building on the P20 Pro’s camera technology, the Mate 20 Pro comes with a Leica-branded triple-camera setup, but swaps its stable-mate’s monochrome camera for a super-wide-angle module, offering a 35mm-equivalent focal length range from 16 to 80mm—the widest of all current smartphone cameras.

The handset is in direct competition with the Apple iPhone XS Max, the Google Pixel 3 XL, the Samsung Galaxy Note 9, among other. How does it fare?

“With a total photo score of 114, the Huawei Mate 20 Pro ties the record-setting score of its cousin, the P20 Pro,” says DxOMark. “The overall Photo score is calculated from sub-scores in tests that examine different aspects of its performance under different lighting conditions.”

The Huawei Mate 20 Pro achieves a photo score of 114 points. In stills mode, the Mate 20 Pro’s triple camera captures images with good target exposure and a wide dynamic range, recording both good highlight and shadow detail even in difficult high-contrast situations. Noise levels are well under control down to low light levels, and the camera’s white balance system and colour rendering settings produce a pleasant colour response in almost all circumstances.

At 97 points, the Mate 20 Pro is very close to the best for video as well, thanks to a fast and smooth autofocus system with good tracking performance, accurate white balance as well as pleasant colour rendering, and low levels of noise, especially in bright shooting conditions. Our testers also liked the exposure system’s ability to adapt quickly and smoothly to changes in illumination.

It was not all good news. DxOMark also had some criticism for the device.

Click here to read about the drawbacks of the Mate 20 Pro camera, and other positives.

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SA car wins
Dakar Rally

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The final stage of Dakar 2019 drew to a close at the bivouac in Pisco, Peru, and saw Toyota Gazoo Racing South Africa’s Nasser Al Attiyah and Mathieu Baumel bring home their South African-built Toyota Hilux for an historic victory. Not only was it a first win for Toyota, but it was also the first petrol-powered car to win the Dakar in the South-American era.

The Qatari driver ensured his French navigator, who turned 43 years old on Thursday, 17 January, received a great birthday present, when the pair arrived at the final time control of Dakar 2019 with teammates Giniel de Villiers and Dirk von Zitzewitz in close formation. The two Toyota Hilux crews completed the entire stage together, as De Villiers / Von Zitzewitz waited nearly 55 minutes for the leaders to start the stage, in order to shadow them to the finish.

The emotions bubbled over for Team Principal Glyn Hall, who found himself without words as his two crews drove into the media area after the time control. “This victory was long overdue,” he finally managed, before being swamped in a sea of well-wishers.

The winning driver, however, was much more vocal: “We are so happy to win the Dakar – not only for ourselves, but also for Toyota and the entire Toyota Gazoo Racing SA team. Everyone has worked so hard for so long, and really deserve this. Thank you for letting us drive this car.”

Toyota Gazoo Racing SA led Dakar 2019 from the first to the last stage, with Al Attiyah/Baumel drawing first blood, before handing the mantle to De Villiers / Von Zitzewitz during stage 2. But then a disastrous Stage 3 saw the Qatari retake the lead – a lead he didn’t relinquish despite some of the toughest stages yet seen on any South-American Dakar.

“When we first heard that the rally was going to take place only in one country, we were skeptical,” said Hall after regaining composure. “But the organisers made sure that this year’s race will long be remembered as one of the toughest tests in the last decade.”

Al Attiyah / Baumel’s victory at Dakar 2019 means that Toyota Gazoo Racing has now won both of the world’s toughest automotive races – the 24 Hours of Le Mans, and the DakarRally.

Click here to read Glyn Hall’s comment on winning the Dakar Rally, as well as the rankings.

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