Synology DiskStation DS1621xs+ NAS announced featuring VMware agentless backup, Xeon D, 10G and optional M.2 NVMe caching SSDs

Introduction This article is an update to my previous, closely-related article about some hands-on time I had with this 2018 product: Synology DiskStation DS1618+ NAS First Look featuring 10GbE! Mar 11 2019 which generated many reader comments where it became evident that others felt much as I…

Sep 10 2020

Sabrent 4TB Rocket NVMe M.2 High Performance SSD - FLIR thermal imagery, firmware tools, and speed tests for VMware ESXi 7.0 VMFS and Windows 10 NTFS

I've been beating up my Samsung 960 PRO 2TB for a good 3 years now. It's in my daily driver, a Windows 10 VM in my Supermicro SuperServer SYS-5028D-TN4T system with Xeon D-1567 12 core, also known as Bundle 1. Shop Amazon. Amazon - Sabrent 4TB Rocket NVMe PCIe M.2 2280 Internal SSD High…

Jul 25 2020

Featured on "Home Gadget Geeks" Episode #451 "Paul Braren with Tech Challenges and Successes"

This new podcast episode 451 is available at the averageguy.tv at Paul Braren with Tech Challenges and Successes – HGG451 where you can also view, listen, and/or subscribe. Here's an excerpt: Paul Braren joins us this week as we get an update on several of home projects. From a discussion on Cox i…

Jul 9 2020

Lack of SMR disclosures in the HDD business

TinkerTry makes no claims to be a news site, but I do write a bit about topics that affect home lab enthusiasts including storage, with spinning drives for things like backups certainly a recurring theme here. So much of YouTube has a whole lot of flashy thumbnails these days intended to draw your…

Apr 29 2020

WhiteCanyon VP Nathan Jones walks me through a live demo of WipeDrive using a VMware ESXi 6.7 VM in TinkerTry's home lab!

White Canyon Software has been in the business of certified drive wipes for over 21 years! It's about time I had a look for myself, here's their WipeDrive 9 Product Page. Disclosure: This unpaid article and video demonstrates WipeDrive by WhiteCanyon. WhiteCanyon has run an occasional ad through…

Jan 18 2020

Featured on "Home Gadget Geeks" Episode #429 "Paul Braren Podcasts from the Tesla 3 and Buys Another"

TeslaFi Affiliate Link above, Amazon and other commission-earning links below. I just got home from a roadtrip to visit family in Boston, spending just $9.11 cents in electricity to move ourselves 208 miles total. What a nice treat to catch this tweet (pictured at right) by @awraynor, time to…

Jan 12 2020

New Veeam Backup & Replication Community Edition for home labs is free!

Dear Home Lab Enthusiast with data to protect: Today's Veeam announcement was big. A way to run enterprise level software with all the features you need for a lab environment, with none of the guilt. That's right, up to 10 VMs, and physical systems too! Got your attention? Read on! I started using…

Mar 26 2019

Synology DiskStation DS1618+ NAS First Look featuring 10GbE!

Disclosure - This test unit was provided by Synology. It's an evaluation, with no promises or stipulations about what content I produce. No money, no Synology advertisements placed. "TinkerTry.com, LLC" may earn a modest commission from readers who use the shopping links below. Backstory…

Mar 11 2019

Featured on "Home Gadget Geeks" Episode #385 "Paul Braren with Travel Tech, Ring Stick Up Cams and a New Tesla 3 – HGG385"

This new podcast episode 385 is now available at the averageguy.tv here, where you can also view, listen, and/or subscribe. Here's an excerpt: Paul Braren from https://tinkertry.com and on Twitter at @paulbraren joins this week as we catch up with him and his job with VMware, some travel tech from…

Jan 6 2019

How to configure VMware ESXi 6.7 or later for VMDirectPath I/O pass-through of any NVMe SSD, such as Windows 10 1809 installed directly on an Intel 900P booted in an EFI VM

Notice the 900P U.2 NVMe SSD above the motherboard There was a little-discussed and finally mature capability that arrived with VMware ESXi 6.5, back in November of 2016. See Amazon for the Intel Optane SSD 900P Series, but this consumer drive might not be ideal for most home virtualization lab…

Nov 28 2018

Close 4K look at a 4-Node-in-2U All Flash (Optane/NVMe) vSAN ReadyNode™ - The Supermicro SuperServer SYS-2029BT-HNR!

Once in a long while, I get an opportunity to get my hands on some amazing hardware, packed with top-flight components. This is one of those times! With permission granted to publish, I'm now able to give you a glimpse into what a fully supported vSAN ReadyNode really looks like, up close and…

Oct 31 2018

Veeam Backup & Replication 9.5 Update 3a RTM is now available featuring VMware vSphere 6.7 support

If you've been watching my article: Status of VMware vSphere 6.7 support by VM backup companies Apr 19 2018 you already know what's been happening with the VM backup companies trying to get full vSphere 6.7 support out the door within about 60 to 90 days of its announcement and release: …

Jun 26 2018

USB Image Tool for Windows easily backs up and restores your complete VMware ESXi hypervisor on USB or SD flash drives, a simple/free clone for peace of mind before patching or upgrading

I created the video below that features a very detailed walk-through of an imaging process of the ESXi hypervisor installation that seems to work quite well for me. I tested this heavily when tinkering with various vSphere 6.5 and 6.7 versions in my home lab. While the use of such an tool isn't…

Jun 14 2018

VeeamON 2018 Recap

Image above adapted from Anthony Spiteri's excellent VeeamON 2018 Recap. See also my extensive, picture-filled @paulbraren #VeeamON timeline. I may not have been VMware's first choice to cover this Other Veeam Vanguards from VMware's Technical Marketing team were unable to attend due to…

May 21 2018

Status of VMware vSphere 6.7 support by VM backup companies

Above image adapted from What's New with vSphere 6 HOL. Table of Contents, in alphabetic order: Altaro VM Backup Commvault Micro Focus VM Explorer Virtual Machine Backup NAKIVO Backup & Replication Unitrends Backup Veeam Backup & Replication This short article is really just about one of…

Apr 19 2018

Intel SSD 760p Series M.2 NVMe will be available in up to 2TB capacity at near SATA pricing and double 600p performance

Introduction This article takes a quick look at Intel's latest SSD specs, and their potential for use in a VMware virtualization home lab environment. I do not currently have a sample of the 760p for first-hand testing. The information here is based on a briefing I recently received from an Intel…

Jan 23 2018

Featured on "Home Gadget Geeks" Episode #340 "Paul Braren and Vintage Tech, 70s thru 90s Head Phones, Cell Phones, Camcorders and Video Games – HGG340"

"Home Gadget Geeks" available in 5 color choices and 3 sizes at Amazon. Alternative title: "Paul Braren's nostalgic look back at PC, audio, video, PC, and phone tech from the 1970s to 2000s, including the ThinkPad 701c Butterfly with an expanding keyboard" The below article…

Jan 7 2018

Intel announcements include details about benchmarking Optane P4800X in VMware ESXi, new 750GB capacity, and 3D XPoint fab expansion

There are three recent Intel announcements that are quite interesting. The first is about 4 recent detailed technical publications, the second is about a maximum Optane capacity doubling, and the third is about a new 3D XPoint fab, in collaboration with Micron. Of most interest to me personally is…

Nov 13 2017

Intel Optane SSD 900P Series is the latest in 3D XPoint NVMe hotness but it is not ideal for most home virtualization lab enthusiasts

Disclosure: The U.2 version of the 900P 280GB was the only model available anywhere, so I purchased one to test. Intel later provided me a loaner AIC version of the 900P as well, in the 280GB capacity. There were no stipulations, I continue to candidly share my experiences. Unfortnately, things did…

Oct 31 2017

How to use Intel isdct to change NVMe SSD variable sector size before using as VMFS or vSAN, note 4Kn (native) drives aren't supported by VMware yet

This article underwent significant changes since first published, as it was quickly found to contain conclusions that were incorrect. It was based on just one very early engineering sample I obtained directly from Intel that turned out not to be a reflection of the now generally available P4800X…

Oct 8 2017

Featured on "Home Gadget Geeks" Episode #325 "Paul Braren with Updates on VMware, the World’s first look at Intel Optane P4800X, eero and much more!- HGG325"

New podcast episode announced at the averageguy.tv, where you can also listen and/or subscribe: Paul Braren (@paulbraren) joins us to talk about his current work load at VMware and an update on some super fast VM parts that will make his home lab a bunch faster, his home Wifi set up with Eero, a…

Sep 8 2017

How to configure VMware ESXi 6.5.x for VMDirectPath I/O pass-through of any NVMe SSD, such as Windows Server 2016 installed directly on an Intel Optane P4800X booted in an EFI VM

There was a little-discussed and finally mature capability that arrived with VMware ESXi 6.5, back in November of 2016. With last month's release of ESXi 6.5 Update 1, it's only gotten easier to configure your ESXi server to allow you to pass a single NVMe storage device, such as an Intel Optane…

Aug 24 2017

Veeam Availability Suite 9.5 Update 2 has full vSphere 6.5 Update 1 support, free NFR also available for Veeam Agent for Windows, Linux, and Backup for MS Office 365

Turns out the question of what backup solution to use to protect a home lab's VMs in a home lab comes up a lot here at TinkerTry, especially when a major new release of vSphere arrives on the scene. It's become such an important thing to consider for IT Pros working off the NFR code…

Aug 23 2017

Intel's new Ruler form factor allows up to 1PB of NVMe in 1U, along with a new 2.5" 3.8TB SATA SSD and Dual Port SSDs for Data Centers

First, NAND based SSDs arrived in SATA, SAS, and PCIe form factors, almost a decade ago. In 2015, NVMe became widely available, in various shapes and sizes, including U.2 (looks like a thick metal 2.5" laptop drive), and HHHL (Half Height Half Length) PCIe cards, aka AIC (Add In Card)s. With…

Aug 15 2017