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NETGEAR Insight 28-Port Smart Cloud Switches Now Available

NETGEAR, Inc., the leading provider of networking devices that power today's smart home and small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), has begun shipping two new 28-port Smart Cloud Switches introduced last month during CES 2018. Offering even more capacity for growing businesses, the switches fall under the umbrella of the award-winning NETGEAR Insight management solution. With its unified, single pane-of-glass view, Insight provides the convenience of setup, monitoring and management features from anywhere, at anytime, via the Insight mobile app or new Insight cloud web portal. With the addition of these latest switches the Insight ecosystem is now made up of six managed switches, the entire line up of ReadyNAS storage and the WAC500 series of wireless access points providing a complete managed network solution.

Seagate Shows Off New Mobile Data Storage Solutions at CES 2018

Seagate Technology plc, a world leader in data storage solutions, today announced a range of new products at the CES 2018 conference designed to equip the world's increasingly mobile population with solutions that solve key challenges they face when creating, processing and accessing their data on-the-go.

"Our world is becoming more data-centric, connected and mobile. This means creating, transferring, storing and accessing data quickly and reliably is critical to unlocking the potential of everything - from data created in the field, to data powering self-driving cars, AI personal assistants or virtual and mixed reality experiences," said Tim Bucher, senior vice president of Seagate consumer solutions. "At Seagate, we're constantly pursuing innovative ways to address our customer needs so they can gain a competitive edge in whichever field they play."

Kingston HyperX Cloud Flight Wireless Gaming Headset Pictured

Kingston showed off its new HyperX Cloud Flight wireless gaming headset. This is the company's first wireless gaming headset, and has a design focus on light weight, so your neck can cope with extended periods of gaming with a headset that has batteries. It has a slightly chiseled design compared to the original HyperX Cloud, and loses unnecessary bulk unless it serves a function. The company assures 30 hours of usage on a full battery charge. Kingston speaks of audio performance rivaling its wired siblings, thanks to its 50 mm drivers. Slated for mid-January, the HyperX Cloud Flight is priced at USD $159.99.

Western Digital Ships "Someone's Backdoor" With My Cloud Drives

Western Digital has seemingly been shipping their My Cloud personal network attached storage solutions with an integrated backdoor. It's not really that complicated a backdoor either - a malicious user should always be able to use it. That stems from the fact that it's a hard coded backdoor with unchangeable credentials - logging in to someone's My Cloud is as simple as inputing "mydlinkBRionyg" as the Administrator username and "abc12345cba" as the respective password. Once logged in, shell access is unlocked, which allows for easy injection of commands.

The backdoor has been published by James Bercegay, with GulfTech Research and Development, and was disclosed to Western Digital on June 12th 2017. However, since more than 6 months have passed with no patch or solution having been deployed, the researchers disclosed and published the vulnerability, which should (should) finally prompt WD to action on fixing the issue. Making things even worse, no user action is required to enable attackers to take advantage of the exploit - simply visiting malicious websites can leave the drives wide open for exploit - and the outing of a Metasploit module for this very vulnerability means that the code is now out there, and Western Digital has a race in its hands. The thing is, it needn't have.

SolidRun's MACCHIATObin ClearCloud 8K Comes with Google Cloud IoT Core Support

SolidRun, a leading developer and manufacturer of high-performance embedded solutions, and edge computing platforms, today announced support for the public beta of Google Cloud IoT Core, a fully managed service on Google Cloud Platform (GCP) to securely connect and manage IoT devices at scale. Cloud IoT Core is now publicly available to all users in beta, including new features and pricing plan. With Cloud IoT Core, businesses can easily connect and centrally manage millions of globally dispersed IoT devices. When used as part of the broader Google Cloud IoT solution, it can ingest all IoT data and connect to Google Cloud's state of the art analytics services including Cloud Pub/Sub, Dataflow, Bigtable, BigQuery, and Machine Learning.

The MACCHIATObin ClearCloud 8K, is based on a Marvell ARMADA A8040 SoC, and features a quad core Arm Cortex A-72 1.6GHz processor, including 4GB DDR4 DIMM memory (16GB optional), dual 10GbE, microSD connectors, 3 x SATA 3.0, USB 3.0 and PCIe x4 3.0 slot. SolidRun's MACCHIATObin ClearCloud 8K with Google's Cloud IoT Core allows users to easily and securely connect to GCP. The solution has been developed in collaboration with Sartura Ltd., a leading specialized open source developer and integrator for embedded applications, in conjunction with Marvell.

Broadcom Now Shipping Their 12.8 Tbps Tomahawk 3 Ethernet Switch Chip

Broadcom Limited, today announced that it has delivered the StrataXGS Tomahawk 3 switch series, demonstrating an unprecedented 12.8 Terabits/sec of Ethernet switching performance in a single device -- double the bandwidth of any other switch silicon available in the market today. The Tomahawk 3 series represents the industry's first shipping product that supports high-density, standards based 400GbE, 200GbE, and 100GbE switching and routing for hyperscale cloud networks, fortifying Broadcom's position as the market leader in raw Ethernet performance, silicon execution, and switch product velocity. Remarkably, the Tomahawk 3 switch series was developed, manufactured, and shipped to customers a mere 14 months following the introduction of the previous 6.4Tbps product generation, while delivering 40% lower power consumption per 100GbE switch port and up to 75% lower cost per 100GbE switch port.

Oracle Buys Aconex for $1.2 Billion

Oracle today announced that it has entered into an agreement with Aconex Limited, a leading cloud-based solution that manages team collaboration for construction projects, for A$7.80 per share in cash. The transaction is valued at approximately US$1.2 billion, net of Aconex cash. The Aconex project collaboration solution digitally connects owners, builders and other teams, providing complete visibility and management of data, documents and costs across all stages of a construction project lifecycle. Aconex has been used in over $1 trillion in projects across 70,000 user organizations in over 70 countries.

The Oracle Construction and Engineering Cloud already offers customers the industry's most advanced solutions for planning, scheduling and delivering large-scale projects. Together, Oracle and Aconex will provide an end-to-end offering for project management and delivery that enables customers to effectively plan, build, and operate construction projects.

Fujitsu's WAN Acceleration Technology Delivers Transfer Speeds Up to 40 Gbps

Fujitsu Laboratories Ltd. today announced the development of WAN acceleration technology that can deliver transfer speeds up to 40Gbps for migration of large volumes of data between clouds, using servers equipped with field-programmable gate arrays (FPGAs).

Connections in wide area networks (WANs) between clouds are moving from 1Gbps lines to 10Gbps lines, but with the recent advance of digital technology, including IoT and AI, there is an even greater demand for faster high-speed data transfers as huge volumes of data are collected in the cloud. Until now the effective transfer speed of WAN connections has been raised using techniques to reduce the volume of data, such as compression and deduplication. However, with WAN lines of 10Gbps there are enormous volumes of data to be processed, and existing WAN acceleration technologies usable in cloud servers have not been able to sufficiently raise the effective transfer rate.

Microsoft Azure Becomes First Global Cloud Provider to Deploy AMD EPYC

AMD today announced the first public cloud instances powered by the AMD EPYC processor. Microsoft Azure has deployed AMD EPYC processors in its datacenters in advance of preview for its latest L-Series of Virtual Machines (VM) for storage optimized workloads. The Lv2 VM family will take advantage of the high-core count and connectivity support of the AMD EPYC processor.

"We are extremely excited to be partnering with Microsoft Azure to bring the power of AMD EPYC processors into their datacenter," said Scott Aylor, corporate vice president and general manager of Enterprise Solutions. "There is tremendous opportunity for users to tap into the capabilities we can deliver across storage and other workloads through the combination of AMD EPYC processors on Azure. We look forward to the continued close collaboration with Microsoft Azure on future instances throughout 2018."

NVIDIA, Microsoft Launch Industry-Standard Hyperscale GPU Accelerator

NVIDIA with Microsoft today unveiled blueprints for a new hyperscale GPU accelerator to drive AI cloud computing. Providing hyperscale data centers with a fast, flexible path for AI, the new HGX-1 hyperscale GPU accelerator is an open-source design released in conjunction with Microsoft's Project Olympus.

HGX-1 does for cloud-based AI workloads what ATX -- Advanced Technology eXtended -- did for PC motherboards when it was introduced more than two decades ago. It establishes an industry standard that can be rapidly and efficiently embraced to help meet surging market demand. The new architecture is designed to meet the exploding demand for AI computing in the cloud -- in fields such as autonomous driving, personalized healthcare, superhuman voice recognition, data and video analytics, and molecular simulations.

Microsoft Announces Q2 2017 (Fiscal Year) Results - Beating Expectations

This afternoon, Microsoft had its earnings announcement for the second quarter of their 2017 fiscal year, beating Wall Street expectations with revenue of $26.1 billion (beating estimates of $25.3 billion), net income of $6.5 billion, and earnings per share of $0.83 (predicted at $0.79).

Microsoft has shuffled their product groups around a bit for reporting, and they now have three groups: Productivity and Business Processes, Intelligent Cloud, and More Personal Computing. LinkedIn results, when aggregated to Microsoft's subsequent earnings reports (which have been included separately due to the acquisition having been completed on December 8th 2016), will fall in the first group.

HyperX Announces the New Cloud Revolver S 7.1 Flagship Headphones

After the spin-off from Kingston, HyperX has only been releasing gaming hardware for a few years, expanding its lineup throughout all kinds of gaming peripherals, from keyboards to headphones and mice. The Cloud Revolver S, announced at CES 2017, are the biggest, baddest headphones in HyperX's range of offerings, attaining flagship status.

HyperX is aiming for comfort first and sound second, driving 50mm drivers and plug-and-play Dolby 7.1-channel surround sound through a setup with memory foam cups and a wider steel headband.

Micron Technology Announces World's Highest-Capacity Enterprise SATA SSD

Micron Technology, Inc. today introduced the Micron Enterprise 5100 Series SATA solid state drive (SSD) family, enabling future-focused data storage platforms to meet the combined demands of performance, capacity and enterprise-class reliability. Micron's 5100 Series Enterprise SATA SSDs provide IT with an easy migration to bridge the infrastructure divide to tomorrow's all flash data center. With an industry-leading 8-terabyte (TB) capacity, the 5100 Series helps you manage the data deluge created by today's diverse digital universe with performance characteristics perfectly tailored to manage the data tsunami.

"Micron is uniquely positioned to help IT embrace modernization and agility, and leading enterprise and cloud data centers look to Micron for breadth and depth in solid state storage solutions to tame a diverse digital universe," Darren Thomas, vice president of storage at Micron. "Our Micron 5100 Series SATA SSDs featuring FlexPro architecture offer a seamless migration path with enterprise class reliability and proven ROI, ensuring flexibility, continuity and agility for data management today and tomorrow."

Seagate Duet Announced: Amazon Cloud-Syncing Portable HDD

Seagate has announced that the company is launching its Duet external hard drive, which would be, in all regards, a run-of-the-mill external hard drive (based on the company's Backup Plus Portable Drive), were it not for the fact that it runs tailored software that syncs its contents with the Amazon Drive service. The drive automatically downloads and uploads content from (and to) Amazon Drive to enable instant and offline access to data stored in the cloud - allowing you to not only store your data on the Cloud, but also keep a physical copy of it with you.

ASUSTOR Announces Support for ElephantDrive Cloud Backup

ASUSTOR Inc., a leading innovator and provider of network storage solutions, has announced the addition of the new ElephantDrive cloud backup App for all ASUSTOR NAS devices. ASUSTOR NAS users will be able to download and install this new App via App Central. ElephantDrive provides an online cloud backup service that allows data from ASUSTOR NAS devices to be backed up in real time or via scheduling to ElephantDrive's encrypted cloud storage space. Data can also be conveniently restored in the event of an accident, significantly enhancing data availability.

"We are delighted to begin our collaboration with ASUSTOR. Our goal has been to provide seamlessly integrated cloud backup solutions for NAS devices, so it was only a matter of time before we offered support for ASUSTOR's powerful and user-friendly devices," said Michael Fisher, CEO at ElephantDrive. "We are convinced that the combination of ASUSTOR's hardware and ElephantDrive's cloud services will satisfy the most demanding users."

TYAN Displays HPC Platforms for Enterprises and Data Centers

TYAN, an industry-leading server platform design manufacturer and subsidiary of MiTAC Computing Technology Corporation, is showcasing a wide range of HPC server platforms optimized for enterprise, storage and data center applications at SC16 this week in Salt Lake City's Salt Palace Convention Center.

TYAN's comprehensive HPC platforms span a wide range of hardware specifications. The Intel Xeon E7-based, 4U quad-socket FT76-B7922 offers a memory capacity of 6TB and supports up to 4x Intel Xeon Phi coprocessors for the most demanding HPC users; the Intel Xeon E5-based, 4U dual-socket FT77C-B7079 supports up to 8x Intel Xeon Phi coprocessors for highly parallelized application deployment, the 2U dual-socket TA80-B7071 supports up to 4x Intel Xeon Phi coprocessors for large-scale production deployment in various high performance computing segments; and the 1U dual-socket GA80-B7081 supports up to 3x Intel Xeon Phi coprocessors for ISVs, universities, and small businesses looking for parallelized application development or proof of concept solution deployment.

AMD to Supply Cloud Server Chips to China's Alibaba

In another business-deal-gone-right for Advanced Micro Devices Inc. in chinese soil, the company is now going to provide China's Alibaba giant with server chips with which to power the company's cloud vision. Whilst Alibaba is most commonly known due to its e-commerce activities (through the Aliexpress and Taobao brands), the chinese company is diversifying, even going so far as entering the entertainment space. Now, Alibaba is bidding to carve itself an even larger piece of the cloud market from the likes of Microsoft's Azure and Amazon's Web Services.

The deal was announced this Friday at the Alibaba Computing Conference by Lisa Su (AMD's CEO) and Simon Hu (president of Alibaba Cloud, the chinese giant's cloud computing arm). Through it, AMD will see its Radeon Pro chips supporting and expanding upon the increasingly-in-demand cloud computing capabilities of the chinese company, which already powers around 35% of China's websites.

Acer Steps up its Digital Signage Solutions with Its BYOC Platform

With the global digital signage market expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.6% over the next five years, Acer, with its expansive offering of hardware, software, and services, will continue to provide solutions that evolve with the ever-growing demand for innovative display solutions.

Building on decades of experience in computing and communication, Acer has a complete technology offering supporting digital signage solutions, including hardware such as LFDs (Large Format Displays, up to 65 inches), PCs, and software and cloud services via its highly-scalable Build Your Own Cloud (BYOC) platform. This total solution offering combined with a global sales and support network makes Acer the ideal digital signage partner for system integrators (SI) and content providers.

Today's digital signage solutions combine the power of technology to broadcast content at scheduled times, and allow content providers to push out changes across a network of displays almost instantaneously. They are used to show a nearly unlimited variety of messages in public areas, such as timetables and at check-in information at airports and stations; directions or meeting notices at the reception and entrances of schools, hospitals, and hotels; special promotions and floor plans at retail stores, restaurants, entertainment venues, and more.

ASUS Settles FTC Charges Involving Insecure Routers and "Cloud" Services

The FTC posted this press release today: Taiwan-based computer hardware maker ASUSTeK Computer, Inc. has agreed to settle Federal Trade Commission charges that critical security flaws in its routers put the home networks of hundreds of thousands of consumers at risk. The administrative complaint also charges that the routers' insecure "cloud" services led to the compromise of thousands of consumers' connected storage devices, exposing their sensitive personal information on the internet. The proposed consent order will require ASUS to establish and maintain a comprehensive security program subject to independent audits for the next 20 years.

"The Internet of Things is growing by leaps and bounds, with millions of consumers connecting smart devices to their home networks," said Jessica Rich, Director of the FTC's Bureau of Consumer Protection. "Routers play a key role in securing those home networks, so it's critical that companies like ASUS put reasonable security in place to protect consumers and their personal information."

ASUS marketed its routers as including numerous security features that the company claimed could "protect computers from any unauthorized access, hacking, and virus attacks" and "protect [the] local network against attacks from hackers." Despite these claims, the FTC's complaint alleges that ASUS didn't take reasonable steps to secure the software on its routers.

Western Digital Announces the My Cloud EX2 Ultra NAS

Western Digital Corporation, a world leader in connected storage solutions, today updated its prosumer solutions with My Cloud EX2 Ultra, a high-performance, two-bay network attached storage (NAS) system. The My Cloud EX2 Ultra NAS is designed from the ground up for creative professionals and prosumers that need to automatically sync content across computers, easily share files and folders and enjoy multiple backup options so they can create their own personalized digital library with ease.

"We know our My Cloud users, especially creative professionals, need comprehensive solutions as digital storage needs continue to soar as well as the need for ongoing streaming capability," said Jim Welsh, executive vice president, WD Branded Products. "With the My Cloud EX2 Ultra, creative professionals are able to combine high performance with multi-tasking optimization and data protection to create a NAS system that simplifies their workflow and provides peace-of-mind."

Seagate Unveils 10TB Helium Enterprise Hard Drive

Seagate Technology plc, a world leader in storage solutions, today launched its first 10TB enterprise capacity hard disk drive (HDD), merging high capacity with the industry's lowest power and weight available in a 10TB drive, to meet the growing storage requirements for private and public cloud-based data centers. The Seagate Enterprise 3.5 Capacity HDD has been selected by enterprise market leaders globally for its ability to address storage demands unlike any other technology in the industry.

"Cloud-based data center storage needs are expanding faster than many current infrastructures can sustain, rendering the capacity demands of users a herculean task for cloud managers," said Mark Re, senior vice president and chief technology officer, Seagate. "Built on our years of research and development of sealed-drive technology, our new helium-based enterprise drive is designed precisely to help data-centric organizations worldwide solve the needs of their growing storage business."

Data Storage Leader PROMISE Debuts First Consumer Product at CES

PROMISE Technology marked its foray into the consumer electronics market today at CES with the unveiling of Apollo, a personal Cloud appliance and app that gives users and their circles or groups full control over the storage and selective sharing of their digital content. Designed with families, small businesses, and small office / home office in mind, Apollo makes it easy for a group of members to store, access and share selected data from wherever they happen to be.

This week at CES, PROMISE will demonstrate Apollo's many features at booth #21731, located in the South Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center Tech East. Apollo will be showcased at the Showstoppers media-only event on January 6 at the Wynn Hotel, Table F4. Apollo is a small, quiet appliance that stores huge amounts of data-up to 4 TB. It's a valuable asset to consumers who find it difficult to manage treasured family photos and videos that proliferate like wildfire on family members' phones, tablets and laptops and at increasingly high resolutions.

Toshiba Announces its Highest Capacity Enterprise Cloud HDD

The Storage Products Business Unit of Toshiba America Electronic Components, Inc., a committed technology leader, announces a new, high-capacity addition to the MC04 Series launched in May of last year. The 6TB version of the MC04 Series of enterprise high-capacity HDDs is designed for bulk storage systems and servers supporting cloud-based applications and scale-out workloads. With an industry standard 3.5-inch form factor, the MC04 Series delivers 7,200 revolutions per minute (RPM) performance, enabling suitable service levels for high performance cloud-based applications and storage.

Toshiba's highest capacity enterprise cloud HDD delivers a 20 percent increase over the previous generation's 5TB capacity, enabling more efficient high-density, high-growth storage for multi-petabyte rack deployments. Furthermore, the newest addition to the MC04 Series improves ROI for scale-out storage solutions with a 20 percent increase in power efficiency (TB/W) over previous generations, enabling more cost-effective delivery of cloud storage services.

Seagate and Baidu Sign Strategic Cooperation Agreement

Seagate Technology, a worldwide leader in storage solutions, today announced it has signed a strategic cooperation agreement with Baidu, China's largest web services firm, in the areas of low-cost online storage, archiving and Big Data analysis.

Under the agreement, Baidu will give priority to Seagate products when considering components for all Baidu servers and storage facilities. In return Seagate will align with Baidu as a Strategic Customer and give priority to Baidu when providing enterprise storage products and relevant support, as well as maintain a dedicated engineering team for Baidu. Seagate will supply enterprise capacity and performance products as part of the relationship. The agreement also allows for joint research in new technology projects in the areas of Cold Storage, Big Data analysis and Shingled Magnetic Recording (SMR). Big Data analysis is the process of examining large amounts of various types of data to find useful information and patterns to assist in decision making.

WD Introduces Cold-Data-Storage HDDs Optimized For The Modern Datacenter

WD, a Western Digital company and world leader in storage deployed for modern datacenters, today announced its innovative WD Ae line of hard drives designed for the unique operating characteristics of the emerging archive tier within web-scale datacenters. Built on a platform to achieve optimal total cost of ownership (TCO), WD Ae hard drives utilize the lowest possible power consumption and a Progressive Capacity model to enable a new tier of storage for large-scale cloud infrastructures.

"Modern datacenter customers came to us with a need for an HDD solution designed specifically for ever-expanding cold-data repositories," said Matt Rutledge, senior vice president and general manager, storage technology, WD. "Now in our third generation with over 700 petabytes deployed, WD is bringing the WD Ae drive to the broader market, representing another vital component of WD's capacity storage portfolio, which delivers features and product attributes optimized for the rapidly evolving storage market."
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