VMware fixes 'split brain' caused by 'stubbed toe' of botched NSX update

CEO Pat Gelsinger says pulled release was a glitch, not a culture fail


VMworld VMware CEO Pat Gelsinger has characterised the decision to pull a version of NSX as “a stubbed toe” while defending VMware's engineering culture.

VMware releases updates to many of its products about once every four months, mixing bug fixes and small feature upgrades. NSX 6.2.3 was just such a release but it quickly proved to be buggy, prompting a “don't install” warning from VMware. That alert was soon followed by the decision to withdraw the software update. NSX 6.2.2 therefore became the latest version of the product once again, despite having been superseded.

Speaking to The Register today at VMworld 2016, Gelsinger was clearly displeased by the cockup, but added that he's generally happy with VMware's recent track record. The new Cross-Cloud Architecture announced this week, he said, has gone from conception to demo code in just nine months, with “private betas imminent.” That speed, he suggested, bespeaks the impact of the company's adoption of agile development methodologies, with the NSX mess a glitch rather than an indicator of troubles in engineering.

VMware has also turned around a new version of NSX in just under three weeks: NSX 6.2.4 debuted on August 26, with a fix for a problem that saw high availability nodes stuck in “split brain” mode after 24 days of operation, and every 24 days after that. Other bugs that caused network connectivity to fail have also been squashed.

NSX 6.2.4 also adds an enhanced firewall API that can now “include status of object updates used in firewall rules.” ®

Bootnote

Gelsinger's use of the term “stubbed toe” is apposite: he injured his own toes a few weeks ago playing racket-ball and is stumping around VMworld in a moon boot and/or on a mobility scooter. The CEO opened the conference by revealing his doctor diagnosed “spectacular spiral fractures” that will take another month or so to heal.


Other stories you might like

  • FTC signals crackdown on ed-tech harvesting kid's data
    Trade watchdog, and President, reminds that COPPA can ban ya

    The US Federal Trade Commission on Thursday said it intends to take action against educational technology companies that unlawfully collect data from children using online educational services.

    In a policy statement, the agency said, "Children should not have to needlessly hand over their data and forfeit their privacy in order to do their schoolwork or participate in remote learning, especially given the wide and increasing adoption of ed tech tools."

    The agency says it will scrutinize educational service providers to ensure that they are meeting their legal obligations under COPPA, the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act.

    Continue reading
  • Mysterious firm seeks to buy majority stake in Arm China
    Chinese joint venture's ousted CEO tries to hang on - who will get control?

    The saga surrounding Arm's joint venture in China just took another intriguing turn: a mysterious firm named Lotcap Group claims it has signed a letter of intent to buy a 51 percent stake in Arm China from existing investors in the country.

    In a Chinese-language press release posted Wednesday, Lotcap said it has formed a subsidiary, Lotcap Fund, to buy a majority stake in the joint venture. However, reporting by one newspaper suggested that the investment firm still needs the approval of one significant investor to gain 51 percent control of Arm China.

    The development comes a couple of weeks after Arm China said that its former CEO, Allen Wu, was refusing once again to step down from his position, despite the company's board voting in late April to replace Wu with two co-chief executives. SoftBank Group, which owns 49 percent of the Chinese venture, has been trying to unentangle Arm China from Wu as the Japanese tech investment giant plans for an initial public offering of the British parent company.

    Continue reading
  • SmartNICs power the cloud, are enterprise datacenters next?
    High pricing, lack of software make smartNICs a tough sell, despite offload potential

    SmartNICs have the potential to accelerate enterprise workloads, but don't expect to see them bring hyperscale-class efficiency to most datacenters anytime soon, ZK Research's Zeus Kerravala told The Register.

    SmartNICs are widely deployed in cloud and hyperscale datacenters as a means to offload input/output (I/O) intensive network, security, and storage operations from the CPU, freeing it up to run revenue generating tenant workloads. Some more advanced chips even offload the hypervisor to further separate the infrastructure management layer from the rest of the server.

    Despite relative success in the cloud and a flurry of innovation from the still-limited vendor SmartNIC ecosystem, including Mellanox (Nvidia), Intel, Marvell, and Xilinx (AMD), Kerravala argues that the use cases for enterprise datacenters are unlikely to resemble those of the major hyperscalers, at least in the near term.

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2022