Supermicro SuperServer SYS-5028D-TN4T mini-tower now ready for business as the first Intel Xeon D-1500 in the VMware Compatibility Guide

This appears to be the very first serious home lab system in a practical mini-tower form factor that's made it onto the VMware Compatibility Guide. That's big news. If you've followed my successes with using this SuperServer in my home lab, you may recall I was a very early customer, taking…

Feb 10 2016

Intel Xeon Processor D-1500 Product Family Thermal/Mechanical Specification and Design Guide

Want to geek out and dive deeper into Xeon D-1500 Processor cooling? How does 82 pages of images and descriptions sound? I nearly stubbed my toe when I stumbled across this beast on the internet today. Page 13.Gives you a sense of what OEMs like Supermicro, Gigabyte, and ASRock go through when…

Feb 8 2016

First look at the new Intel Xeon D-1541 Supermicro SuperServer SYS-5028D-TN4T

Supermicro has a reputation for stable servers, thankfully devoid of BIOS bells-and-whistles that could adversely affect system stability. My last 7 months of Supermicro SYS-5028D-TN4T mini-tower ownership have held up to those expectations. Had my hands on 3 other identical loaner SuperServers for…

Feb 7 2016

First Look at the FLIR ONE Thermal Imaging camera for smartphones and tablets

[audio removed] I'm wearing socks on a carpet. FLIR ONE is sensitive enough to easily see my footprints. FLIR has been known for decades in the thermal imaging industry. I remember going to a fire station with my son's cub scout den back in the early 2000s, where I got to try out a helmet-mounted…

Feb 6 2016

Supermicro Embedded/IoT Solutions - 1U, mini-tower, and many more

I'm taking a moment to highlight Supermicro's still current brochure, entitled: Embedded/IoT Solutions - Supermicro IoT on on Wikipedia: The Internet of Things (IoT) is the network of physical objects—devices, vehicles, buildings and other items which are embedded with electronics, software, s…

Feb 6 2016

Freshly re-minted VMware vExpert 2016

VMware vExpert 2016 recipients have been named, and I'm happy to find that I've made the list again this year, my 3rd year. Here's my shiny, refreshed-for-2016 vExpert directory entry joining the 919 other vExperts out there. It's quite the list, check it out! TinkerTry is a completely independent b…

Feb 5 2016

TinkerTravels - 5 Technical Presentations these next 4 months

I like to be sure I have something to say, before I accept an offer to speak at a user group or conference. Just so happens that with all the innovation in CPUs and SSDs over the past year, I sure do! I love tinkering with hardware, and will of course be mixing it up with virtualization software…

Feb 3 2016

Next Generation Storage Tech Stories

Source: Intel Yeah, I read stuff. Mostly tech stuff. Once in a while, I come across something particularly lucid. Quality techie geeky stuff, with pictures. Let's start this journey back in 2013, the dawn of PCIe SSD, as NVMe was just starting to surface. Yeah, that seems like ancient history, but…

Feb 3 2016

My 8 core Intel Xeon D-1541 arrives by mid February, no ETA on 12 and 16 core models

It's time. By mid-February, I'll have a new Supermicro SYS-5028D-TN4T mini-tower to tinker with for a bit. Since word got out last November, perhaps you've been patiently waiting for this 2nd wave to arrive, of the beloved Xeon D-1500 SoC (System on a Chip). This article gives you a summary of what…

Feb 3 2016

Samsung 850 EVO 2TB SSD revisited - 6 months of time, 40TBs of writes, and one firmware later...

Back on July 24th 2015, I purchased my first 850 EVO SSD. A whopping 2TB in size, which was an admittedly huge investment: My experience with the Samsung 850 EVO 2TB SSD, and how it fits into my hybrid home lab strategySee various capacities and current Samsung SSD 850 EVO pricing at Amazon. But…

Jan 30 2016

VMware Workstation and Fusion teams let go, what could this mean

I'm not yet sure what to think of this recent news, and I'm not alone. My tribute to VMware Workstation, Player, and the amazing Hosted UI team. https://t.co/6KL12u1ziK— Christian Hammond (@chipx86) January 26, 2016 Chris Hammond A Tribute to VMware Workstation, Fusion, and Hosted UI …

Jan 27 2016

You can boot from a Samsung 950 PRO NVMe M.2 SSD in a PCIe slot - tested with Supermicro 5028D-TN4T & Lycom DT-120 M.2 to PCIe adapter

Lycom DT-120 M.2 to PCIe adapter. I have the 950 PRO booting Windows 10 from the PCIe slot, using the $20 adapter pictured at right. Works just the same as when it was installed in the M.2 slot. The speeds are the same. No special drivers required for the initial install, it just works. You can…

Jan 27 2016

New Windows 10 NVMe driver 1.4.7.16 released for Samsung SSD 950 PRO M.2

From the Samsung NVMe Driver Version 1.1 Installation Guide. Available now on Amazon in 256GB and 512GB sizes, 1TB not expected until early 2016. Just in case you've got yourself a Samsung 950 PRO PCIe NVMe M.2 internal SSD, there's a new Windows 10 device driver for you, and a new Samsung…

Jan 26 2016

How cool is that Hypercube Lego Server, featuring the powerful Xeon D-1540 on tiny and familiar Supermicro X10SDV-F motherboard

What a nice way to start the day, thanks to TinkerTry commenter Jay Oliphant @JackOfAllTech. I somehow hadn't spotted this article yet, what a great find! Jay is also the super helpful TinkerTry visitor who helped me squash a strange TinkerTry CDN bug, back in 2014. A Lego server, nice! Hey…

Jan 19 2016

Ultimate guide to mousing your way across multiple Windows 10 desktops with ease for an instant productivity boost

Train your Logitech mouse to do new tricks! Logitech SetPoint can allow mouse button controls instead of awkward multi-key shortcuts, for instantly navigating among multiple desktops See how to use this almost hidden but very useful Windows 10 productivity feature at Microsoft at: Multiple desktops…

Jan 16 2016

Longest email thread ever about Xeon D-1540, VMware, NVMe, VSAN, backup dedupe, and so much more...

When starting this site nearly 5 years ago, I was rather reluctant to go so public, setting up the Twitter and the Google+, and the email contact form. But I knew the benefits would likely largely outweigh the drawbacks. I was right. It's weeks like this that I'm so very glad I'm now public with my…

Jan 15 2016

Recommended BIOS Settings for Supermicro SuperServer SYS-5028D-TN4T

See also my recent article about performance optimized BIOS settings that includes a way to quickly and easily revert to the general purpose settings in this article, just in case you don't wish to have to do this 7 minute procedure twice. Given there are so many use case scenarios, no BIOS setting…

Jan 15 2016

Benchmark Optimized BIOS Settings for Supermicro SuperServer SYS-5028D-TN4T

Back in early November of 2015, I came up with a set of performance optimized BIOS settings that seemed to squeak out the best performance from this particular system: World's fastest consumer SSD - Samsung 950 PRO M.2 NVMe benchmark results Given there are so many permutations and use cases, no…

Jan 13 2016

How to easily update your VMware vCenter Server Appliance to vCSA 6.0 Update 1b

If you're using vCSA 6.0, Update 1 introduced the new Appliance Management Interface. Think re-incarnated Virtual Appliance Management Interface (VAMI), from those 5.5 days of yore, In the Application Management Interface, I was getting the "Packages Already Staged" message, but it never…

Jan 12 2016

How to easily update your VMware server to ESXi 6.0 Update 1b

If you don't have a commercial VMware license, and instead are using a trial, free, or EVALExperience ESXi 6.0 or ESXi 6.0 Update 1, you won't be able to easily download the 6.0 Update 1b ISO directly. You're not entitled. Silly, I know. Worry not though, since this article has you covered. Takes…

Jan 7 2016

Download or Upgrade - VMware vCSA/ESXi 6.0 Update 1b

Yay, it's download day! Just in time for my planned home lab rebuild. Some minor features are new, some stuff is just fixed, so be sure to start with kicking off those big downloads then reading the release notes. Oh, yeah, back up all your stuff, before you consider updating. And you are supposed…

Jan 7 2016

VMware ESXi 6.0 Windows 10 VM speed comparison between Intel 750 Series NVMe SSD and Samsung 950 PRO M.2 NVMe SSD

Source: Intel What happens when you take two identical Xeon servers with PCIe 3.0 x 4 Supermicro SuperServer SYS-5028D-TN4T Bundle 2 64GB of Samsung 2133MHz DDR4 RDIMM RAM Available now on Amazon in 256GB and 512GB sizes, 1TB not expected until early 2016. ...and bless each of them with magical…

Jan 3 2016

Getting started with Nutanix Community Edition the easy way - using Rufus on Windows to create bootable USB for automated server install

I recently found myself involved in a Twitter discussion about getting Nutanix Community Edition going in my home virtualization lab environment. My thinking went something like this. Instead of more tiny tweet replies, how about I just figure it out using one of my SanDisk flash drives and my…

Jan 1 2016

Welcome to 2016, here's a peek into the future...

I've done such "what's ahead" pieces before, but it's been a while. Why not kick off this fresh new year by giving TinkerTry fans a glimpse at the sorts of topics they can expect to see coming up soon? Things change constantly in any successful home lab. Surprises, discoveries, and life…

Jan 1 2016