Archive | May, 2013

No extents were found for the plex

No extents were found for the plex

Yesterday a friend asked me to help him troubleshoot a problem he was having when he was attempting to setup RAID 1 also known as mirroring.  He wanted to mirror the Operating System hard drive to a second hard drive and told me he cant get the System Reserved partition mirrored.

I asked him to show me exactly how he was attempting to perform this task and as I suspected he mirrored the (Boot, Page, Crash Dump) partition which is most commonly known as the C: drive first.

Next he would attempt to mirror the (system Reserved Partition) which by default is 100 MB in physical size.

I remember when I tried this several years ago myself  I encountered the same problem and with some experimenting I figured out how to do it and below are the steps.

First if you already created a mirror in windows vista or windows 7 go ahead and break it.

Now back to square one here are the steps to mirroring windows vista or windows 7.

Step 1
Assuming you already know how to mirror drives. (Software Mirroring or Software RAID 1)
IF YOU DON’T KNOW HOW TO MIRROR DRIVES it is in your best interest to ask somebody that knows how to mirror drives to walk you through the process or better yet do it with you so you learn without screwing up.

Step 2
Mirror the (System Reserved) partition first.

After this completes, reboot the computer then mirror the C: drive then after the Resynching completes reboot again.

Now both partitions will be mirrored.

Final thought on this.
What does the error No extents were found for the plex mean?
I still don’t know.



Posted in Microsoft, Questions & Answers, RAID 1, RAID Levels, Software Raid, Windows 7, Windows Vista0 Comments

3-D printers have officially gone mainstream

3 D printer

3D printers have officially gone mainstream. You can now purchase one at Staples for around $1,300 bucks.

says it is the first major U.S. retailer to sell a 3-D printer. It began selling The Cube, made by 3D Systems on Friday, and the printer will hit “many” of the retailer’s brick-and-mortar stores by June.

While 3-D printers have long been used in industrial manufacturing, a recent “maker” movement is slowly popularizing in-home versions of the devices.

The Cube, like other 3-D printers, is a machine that creates physical, three-dimensional objects. The printer uses a digital design file as a blueprint, then builds the item layer by layer with plastic. Users can print anything they can design, including action figures, iPhone docks and coffee cup holders.

The Cube can print items up to five-and-a-half inches tall, wide and long in 16 different colors, and it comes packaged with 25 free design templates. Shares of Cube maker 3D Systems rose 4% after the announcement but ended the day up 1%. Staples stock closed nearly 3% higher.

George Young, a partner at 3D Systems shareholder Villere & Co., says the Staples announcement validates 3D Systems’ mission, “because they’ve been saying their technology can cover all ends of the spectrum — from manufacturing lines to consumers’ homes. And a retailer like Staples is obviously cognizant about what their customers want.”

3D Systems says it is devoted to the “democratization” of 3-D printers, making the complex and expensive technology available to the masses. But the company faces a lot of upstart competition.

Perhaps the buzziest 3-D printer company is Brooklyn, N.Y.-based Makerbot, which unveiled its $2,800 Replicator 2x” at the Consumer Electronics Show in January.

Following Makerbot’s success, crowdfunding site Kickstarter quickly became full of similarly named rivals: Printrbot, TangiBot, Ultra-Bot, RigidBot, Gigabot, and Bukobot.

While many 3-D printer owners may be using the devices to prototype inventions or simply have fun making plastic toys, other industries are tapping into the printers’ potential. Chefs are using the printers to create intricately designed food. Doctors are even experimenting with advanced versions of the machines to make artificial organs and prosthetic limbs.

In some cases, 3-D designs have been controversial. Makerbot found itself under pressure to crack down on downloadable designs for printable gun parts late last year, after the school shooting in Newtown, Conn. MakerBot’s design file repository, called Thingiverse, had long prohibited “the creation of weapons”  but they were loosely enforced before the crackdown in December.




Posted in News, Printers0 Comments

What it’s like to play with a Super Computer?

I flew to Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Oak Ridge, Tennessee last week to “meet” Jaguar, the world’s third-fastest supercomputer. OK, it wasn’t quite as simple as that. I had to get special government clearance, go through a security checkpoint that was a full five miles away from the supercomputer, and then get briefed on how to behave around Jaguar Look but do not touch! were the simple rules I had to abide by.

Fully briefed and slightly intimidated, I was lead into a room roughly the size of a football field that houses the supercomputer, which itself is the size of a basketball court. For those who don’t follow sports: it’s really big.

It’s also incredibly loud. Like, jet-engine loud. Even with ear-protection, my head was buzzing a little when I left the room.

The noise comes from the cooling fans that are located below the floor and atop the computer, which are required to literally keep the computer from melting. If you’ve ever noticed your laptop getting a little hot when it’s sitting on your lap, multiply that by about 180,000 and you’ll get an idea of why all that cooling is necessary.

The fans blow air up from the ground that has been chilled down to 60 degrees Fahrenheit, using 4,800 lbs. of R134 coolant — the same stuff that cools your refrigerator and car air conditioner. When the air comes out the top of Jaguar, it’s 120 degrees.

Also in the room are are Kraken, the 11th fastest supercomputer, and Gaea, the 52nd fastest, according to the biannual Top 500 supercomputer list, which was announced Monday. All three are used by different groups: Jaguar is a Department of Energy supercomputer, Kraken is used by the University of Tennessee, and Gaea is the supercomputer for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Their presence add to the room’s noise and also creates a need for more storage space. That’s why half the room is taken up by the 20,000 1-terabyte hard drives that store all the data that the massive computers churn out.

It’s a lot of equipment, and there are the appropriate number of blinking LED lights emanating from all of the various components.

Meanwhile, computer engineers from Cray, the supercomputers’ manufacturer, are running around wearing blue lab coats performing maintenance. Just like on your home PC, stuff is breaking or failing all the time on Jaguar, so on-site engineers are constantly checking up on the eight rows of 284 cabinets that make up the computer.

They’re also working on a giant upgrade. Right now, Jaguar runs at 2 petaflops, which translates to 2 quadrillion (that’s 2 million billion) calculations per second. That’s fast, but the world’s fastest supercomputer blows Jaguar away: Japan’s K Computer runs at more than 10 petaflops.

Clearly, Jaguar is falling behind and needs more oomph. So the DOE decided to replace Jaguar’s processors and turn it into a 20 petaflop machine — twice as fast as K Computer. When the upgrade is finished in late 2012, the supercomputer will be appropriately renamed Titan, as it will likely be the world’s fastest.

I was particularly fascinated by how Jaguar handles input and output. The computer runs a stripped down version of Linux, the open-source operating system that powers most Web servers. Data and commands are entered into computer terminals similar to a PC interface, with keyboards and flat-screen monitors.

Output is where it gets really interesting. After data is spat out into spreadsheets, on-site imaging specialists transform that into stunning high-definition visualizations that can be viewed in a room one flight up from Jaguar. The viewing room has 27 high-definition projectors working in tandem to create wide-screen HD images of whatever the scientists cooked up using the supercomputer.

So messing around with a supercomputer is kind of like playing with your PC, except everything is many orders of magnitude bigger, faster, louder, brighter, and much, much more expensive.

Don’t worry, I didn’t touch anything.

Posted in Computers, supercomputer0 Comments