LJ Archive

New Products

James Gray

Issue #265, May 2016

The Qt Company's Qt Start-Up

The Qt Company is proud to offer a new version of the Qt for Application Development package called Qt Start-Up, the company's C++-based framework of libraries and tools that enables the development of powerful, interactive and cross-platform applications and devices. Now used by around one million developers worldwide, the Qt Company seeks to expand its user base by targeting smaller enterprises. The new Qt Start-Up, available to companies with an annual revenue of less than $100,000, enables small and start-up companies to harness the full power of the Qt application and UI development framework in their products. The Qt Start-Up package is just as powerful as the regular Qt for Application Development package, but it's available at a much lower price. The Qt Company's rationale for Qt Start-Up is to enable a new generation of innovators and help them build successful businesses assisted by the powerful application development and UI creation tools within the Qt framework.


Linaro's ARM-Based Developer Cloud

As the adoption of ARM-based servers accelerates and IoT applications rapidly evolve, software developers are demanding access to requisite hardware and software-reference platforms. In response, Linaro released Linaro Developer Cloud, a new cloud-based native ARMv8 development environment, which can be used to design, develop, port and test server, cloud and IoT applications without substantial upfront hardware investment. The Developer Cloud is the combination of ARM-based silicon vendors' server hardware platforms, emerging cloud technologies and many Linaro member-driven projects, including server-class boot architecture, kernel and virtualization. The Developer Cloud is based on OpenStack, leveraging both Debian and CentOS, as the underlying cloud OS infrastructure. It will use ARM-based server platforms from Linaro members AMD, Cavium, Huawei and Qualcomm Technologies, Inc., and will expand with demand and as new server platforms come to market.


Ben Rady's Serverless Single Page Apps (The Pragmatic Programmers)

You don't need to manage your own servers to build powerful Web applications. Need proof? Pick up tech author Ben Rady's new book Serverless Single Page Apps: Fast, Scalable, and Available, a guide to creating single-page apps that run entirely on Web services, scale to millions of users and cost amazingly little. Readers of Rady's book will skip over building an application server, avoid messing around with middle-tier infrastructure and get right to the Web app their customers want. Using a Web browser, a prepared workspace and an editor, readers learn the fundamental technologies behind modern single-page apps and use Web standards to create lean Web applications that can take advantage of the newest technologies. They'll also deploy the application quickly using Amazon S3 and utilize Amazon Cognito to connect with providers like Google and Facebook to manage user identities. Other topics include DynamoDB for reading and writing user data directly from the browser and Amazon Lambda for creation of scalable custom microservices. Serverless Single Page Apps is for those who either have never built a Web application before and seasoned Web developers looking for an alternative to complex server-side Web frameworks.


Varnish Software's Varnish Massive Storage Engine

The headlining feature of the new Varnish Massive Storage Engine (MSE) 2.0 from Varnish Software is cache persistence. This new capability in MSE, an exclusive module of Varnish Plus Web optimization suite, allows Web sites to retain data across restarts and reboots and ensures that, in the case of a system crash, cache content will not be lost. Furthermore, users can repair and maintain their sites as quickly as possible. Varnish MSE was designed specifically for the high-performance needs of video distribution, content delivery networks (CDNs) and large-cache use cases that require enabling of the Varnish caching layer to handle multi-terabyte data sets. For big CDNs, an empty cache is a no-go, argues Varnish, and reintroducing large cache objects, of the size for which MSE is required, is time-consuming and expensive. With Varnish MSE 2.0, all objects remain in cache with minimal performance reduction.



Free of charge for any use and free of any kind of advertising bundle, PeaZip is an open-source (LGPL) file archiver, a free alternative to software like WinRar and WinZip, for Linux and Windows. Version 6.0.0 is a new major release of PeaZip that adds new features to the existing functionality. Innovations include ability to open/extract in the new RAR5 format, full support for Unicode filenames, quick search and new themes to customize PeaZip's look and feel. PeaZip now supports more than 180 archive types (including 7Z, RAR, TAR, ZIP, ZIPX and so on) and provides useful file management features, such as encryption, file split, verify hash and secure delete. PeaZip adds that, unlike most other classic file archivers like WinZip and WinRar, its archiver is natively portable and cross-platform/multiplatform software that is available for computers or tablets running 32-bit and 64-bit Windows (9x, NT/2K/XP, Vista/7/8/10, ReactOS, Wine), Linux or BSD x86 and x86-64.


Petros Koutoupis' RapidDisk

RapidDisk is an open-source and enhanced Linux RAM drive solution led by BDFL Petros Koutoupis that allows users to create, resize and remove RAM drives dynamically or map those same RAM drives as a cache to slower data volumes. The latest version 4.0 release adds a series of complementary improvements, such as kernel module optimizations, code cleanup/redesign and bug fixes. RapidDisk consists of a collection of kernel modules, an administration utility, high-availability scripts and a RESTful API for third-party integration. By design, RapidDisk volumes are thinly provisioned and will allocate memory only upon usage.


ServersCheck's Thermal Imaging Camera Sensor

Monitoring data centers with sensors over conventional temperature probes has huge advantages, says facilities monitoring specialist ServersCheck. The company's new technology is what it bills as “the world's first thermal imaging camera sensor that works with SNMP and Modbus”. While a traditional temperature sensor reports the nearby temperature, ServersCheck's patent-pending thermal imaging sensor performs a thermal scan of what it sees within its 50° field-of-view camera. Every two seconds, it checks the temperature at 4,800 points, and this thermal image array is then converted into SNMP and Modbus data for easy integration with monitoring platforms. The network monitoring or building management platform receives transmission from the wired or cellular base unit—that is, the SensorGateway, which connects to the sensors via RJ45. This new technology opens up myriad new monitoring opportunities, says ServersCheck, particularly relating to data centers and distributed infrastructure sites. The new sensors can monitor individual changes or events within the environment that don't necessarily affect the overall conditions and often go undetected. Furthermore, monitoring the contacts and switches at substations with massive current loads on a 24x7 basis streamlines the maintenance process and safeguards against massive failures.


Chris Birchall's Re-Engineering Legacy Software (Manning Publications)

Chances are high that you didn't write the application you're currently working on. Most developers inherit projects built on an existing codebase that reflects design patterns, usage assumptions, infrastructure and tooling from another time and another team (and the docs are complete rubbish). To help you breathe new life into your legacy project, pick up Chris Birchall's new book Re-Engineering Legacy Software. Birchall's book is an experience-driven guide to revitalizing inherited projects, covering refactoring, quality metrics, toolchain and workflow, continuous integration, infrastructure automation and organizational culture. On the purely technical side, readers will learn techniques for introducing dependency injection for code modularity, quantitatively measuring quality and automating infrastructure. On the strategic side, readers will develop practical processes for deciding whether to rewrite or refactor, team organization and even convincing management that quality matters. Core topics include deciphering and modularizing awkward code structures, effectively integrating and automating tests, replacing an outdated build system and infrastructure automation using tools like Vagrant and Ansible.


LJ Archive