Category Archives: Other

Backblaze – Force Immediate Scan

If you’re a big fan of Backblaze just like I am then you probably have wondered how to force it to scan for new files to backup. According to the Advanced Windows Help page found on the Backblaze website, there is a small process that slowly scans your computer looking for new/changed files. It can take about an hour or two to scan across all drives for an average user. When you plug in an external drive, it may take Backblaze anywhere from 1-120 minutes to schedule the files on the external drive to be backed up online.

There is a way to force an immediate rescan. It will slow your computer down for a few minutes while it scans all your drives. You can force the rescan by holding down the ALT key and clicking “Restore Options…” button.


IBM Storwize IP replication

I was recently working on a VMware SRM solution utilising an IBM Storwize v3700 SAN at each site with remote mirror. I had configured a global mirror with change volume relationship over IP which works beautifully when both source and target SANs were in the same subnet/building. Once the target SAN was moved out of the building to the DR site, the IP SAN traffic went through the gateway across the WAN to the other site. The performance for the IP replication was pretty average, to say the least,  out of a 100Mbps link, I could only achieve 1MBps, even though windows file copy would easily saturate the link providing 10MBps consistently.

Windows File Copy


We ended up testing the link for packet loss and while it did show some packet loss, I had assumed that given that Windows file copy could achieve 10MBps then the Storwize SAN from IBM should be able to achieve similar results.
Well, it turns out that’s incorrect. As per the below snippet from the IBM System Storage SAN Volume Controller and Storwize V7000 Replication Family Services Redbook.

packet loss results in sever performance degradation well out of proportion to the number of packets actually lost. A link that is considered “high quality” for most TCP/IP applications might be completely unsuitable for the remote mirror.

IBM Storwize Packet Loss


Now, this helped explained why Veeam could perform Backup Copy to the DR site at a consistently fast 10MBps without any problems yet the remote mirror performed so badly.

After resolving the packet loss problem which was dodgy SFP+ fibre adapters and a couple cables, the remote mirror performance jumped straight to 10MBps and has stayed there consistently ever since.

Pay to recover your data – CryptoLocker

A new trojan called CryptoLocker is making the rounds which silently encrypts files on your computers, along with files on any connected network storage or USB devices, rendering them unreadable. Once the encryption process finishes, it tells users to pay a ransom, which so far has been $100, $300 or two bitcoins, currently worth about $2400.

Currently, there is no way to recover your data other then from an “offline” backup, if the backup was online or attached at the time of the encryption then more then likely the backup is now encrypted as well.

180TB of Good Vibrations – Storage Pod 3.0

I am a huge fan of BackBlaze’s online backup and they have just released version 3 of their amazing storage pods. These Storage Pods are all about big storage at low low costs, they are the backbone  of BackBlaze’s storage pools and at 180TB of storage at $59.54 a TB they help keep the subscriptions fees down. To break that down further it’s only $0.0595 per GB! If you are interested you can actually purchase a complete unit yourself or build one DIY style.

More information here;

How The Internet Archive Works

Brewster Kahle, the founder of the Internet Archive, explains the purpose and function of the Internet Archive, which is housed in an old Christian Science church in San Francisco. This is the famed Wayback Machine, which lets you see a snapshot of a website as it existed since 1996. 240 billion web pages have been archived since then, and the database is updated every few months. Kahle also runs the Physical Archive of the Internet Archive, a modern day Library of Alexandria that aims to preserve millions of books (in temperature-controlled shipping containers) for a hundred years.

My first blog

Thank you for swinging by my site! My name is Rhys Hammond and this is my blog for technical subjects.

I live in Brisbane, Australia. When I’m not working on the house or spending time with my partner, I’m enjoying the odd video game or two.

I’ve been in the Information Technology field for  almost 10 years, starting out with desktop support. Along the way, I worked as a laptop technician and a computer salesman. Currently, I work as a system engineer focusing on virtualization, x86 servers, storage, backup and disaster recovery.