Discussion:
The case for 4D (server at least) on Linux
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Peter Jakobsson
2014-02-08 15:08:12 UTC
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Hi

I've recently realised how unbelievably cheap, fast, reliable and easy to setup cloud based virtual servers have become ** IF ** you can live with a non-proprietary OS and command line interface.

For example, you can run a 1Gb RAM, 30 GB SSD server for about $10 a month all in. In my part of the world that's £6 or Eu 8 per month which is now the price of 3 double espressos.

The setup time is ridiculous - less than a minute and you're up and running. Then, once the initial instance is configured, further ones are simply cloned. See for example https://www.digitalocean.com/pricing.

It's becoming clear to me where this is all going. If we had a Linux version of 4D Server running in headless mode we could take advantage of these huge savings and logistic overheads. It would also be great for us developers because it eliminates all the platform and hardware diversity of your customer base in one fell swoop.

Does nobody else think this ? At the very least, bandwidths are only going to continue increasing (fibre optic spreading), hosting costs plummeting and ease of setup improving and speeds increasing.

It seems a no brainer that the time for 4D on Linux must have come. The issue of suppressing the UI on the server side is already precedented - the web interface just sends it to the browser for example - and they already wrote the code 22 years ago (I personally saw it running on a Sun Sparc and it seemed to work fine - managed a sequential search on 10,000 records in a blistering 20 seconds :) ).

What do people think about this ?

Peter
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Paul Lovejoy
2014-02-08 15:47:59 UTC
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I'd vote for that.

I hate Windows and Apple has abandoned the server market.

Linux and/or Unix is a must.

Paul
Post by Peter Jakobsson
Hi
I've recently realised how unbelievably cheap, fast, reliable and easy to setup cloud based virtual servers have become ** IF ** you can live with a non-proprietary OS and command line interface.
For example, you can run a 1Gb RAM, 30 GB SSD server for about $10 a month all in. In my part of the world that's £6 or Eu 8 per month which is now the price of 3 double espressos.
The setup time is ridiculous - less than a minute and you're up and running. Then, once the initial instance is configured, further ones are simply cloned. See for example https://www.digitalocean.com/pricing.
It's becoming clear to me where this is all going. If we had a Linux version of 4D Server running in headless mode we could take advantage of these huge savings and logistic overheads. It would also be great for us developers because it eliminates all the platform and hardware diversity of your customer base in one fell swoop.
Does nobody else think this ? At the very least, bandwidths are only going to continue increasing (fibre optic spreading), hosting costs plummeting and ease of setup improving and speeds increasing.
It seems a no brainer that the time for 4D on Linux must have come. The issue of suppressing the UI on the server side is already precedented - the web interface just sends it to the browser for example - and they already wrote the code 22 years ago (I personally saw it running on a Sun Sparc and it seemed to work fine - managed a sequential search on 10,000 records in a blistering 20 seconds :) ).
What do people think about this ?
Peter
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Fernando-Juan Santos
2014-02-08 16:28:15 UTC
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Post by Paul Lovejoy
I'd vote for that.
I hate Windows and Apple has abandoned the server market.
Linux and/or Unix is a must.
Paul
sure ?
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Thomas M Swenson
2014-02-08 18:09:16 UTC
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You're preaching to the choir.
Post by Peter Jakobsson
Hi
I've recently realised how unbelievably cheap, fast, reliable and easy to setup cloud based virtual servers have become ** IF ** you can live with a non-proprietary OS and command line interface.
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Lee Hinde
2014-02-08 19:10:54 UTC
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Where's that 4D Universal canvas tote I have lying around somewhere...
Post by Thomas M Swenson
You're preaching to the choir.
Post by Peter Jakobsson
Hi
I've recently realised how unbelievably cheap, fast, reliable and easy
to setup cloud based virtual servers have become ** IF ** you can live with
a non-proprietary OS and command line interface.
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Peter Jakobsson
2014-02-08 19:12:28 UTC
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Post by Thomas M Swenson
You're preaching to the choir
Better sing louder then :)

The thing is, it's been 7 years since the last major overhaul of the database engine. Since then, most of the development has been tinkering with the front end. All sorts of stuff that's of some use to some people and no use to others. I'm not saying it's a waste of time - there have been some great new features and I'm sure many have appreciated them. But there have been no *strategic* evolutions if you know what I mean (apart from Wakanda which is a separate product and potentially complimentary but not without obstacles).

Getting the server on Linux would "keep 4D in play" in a big way by jettisoning commercial counter parties such as Microsoft and Apple - at least as far as the server goes. I mean it's becoming a tsunami. What's is an organisation going to do when it has the choice of:

a) - purchasing a 'box', finding a room for it, finding an 'admin' for it, purchasing x000's worth of licensed server OS for it, taking a week to set it up. tripping over cables and routers as they go

and

b) - purchasing a 'host' for $12 a month that's up and running in 57 seconds and requires none of the above ?

IMO we are slightly screwed if we can't operate in this "arena" in the future.

Peter


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Peter Jakobsson
2014-02-08 19:30:55 UTC
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Post by Peter Jakobsson
purchasing a 'host' for $12 a month
Sorry, that should've read "4 additional double espressos" a month :)

(I think I'll have to give up developing and start a hosting company called the "8-Shot Platform". I can see it now - a free Starbucks voucher for a ninth one when you sign up. ).

P


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jarosz
2014-02-10 09:07:44 UTC
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I'd DEFINITELY vote for this.

As Mac OS X is based on unix surely it wouldn't be too huge a job to port 4D
Server to Linux...

Michael Jarosz




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James Brown
2014-02-11 00:13:56 UTC
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Post by Peter Jakobsson
What do people think about this ?
Peter
Let’s get a 64-bit Mac version done first!

James.
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Justin Will
2014-02-11 00:53:35 UTC
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I would vote for Linux long before OSX. Ever since Apple killed the X Serve I have zero customers wanting 4D server on OSX. On the flip side putting 4D on Linux really opens up the cloud/vm world and reduces deployment costs by eliminating the need to pay the MS server license. Like it or not Apple killed much of its hope for any real acceptance in corporate IT environments when it killed the X Serve. There is no way I can convince any of my larger clients to use a Mac Mini when every other piece of their infrastructure is actual server hardware installed in racks with features like dual power supplies, large raids etc. I'd vote over and over again for 64 bit 4D server on Linux before 4D server 64 bit on OSX.

Thanks
Justin Will
Post by James Brown
Let’s get a 64-bit Mac version done first!
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Peter Jakobsson
2014-02-11 01:20:19 UTC
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Post by Justin Will
I'd vote over and over again for 64 bit 4D server on Linux before 4D server 64 bit on OSX
So would I.

IMO an Linux server would be as big a strategic breakthrough as Wakanda. It has technology appeal (a very solid and secure platform), commercial appeal (opens up an entire market sector) and economic appeal (saves a large amount of money) all at the same time. Surely that has to be looked at seriously as a contender for development objectives.

Peter


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David Adams
2014-02-11 01:21:30 UTC
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Just to toss in a detail....when you use a virtual machine, there is still
physical IO down underneath everything. For a disk-intensive application
like a database server, that can matter. A lot. You may or may not find
that hosting in a virtual environment on shared hardware works acceptably
with 4D Server. If not, you can move to dedicated hosting.

Justin Leavens has done a couple of Summit presentations on scaling that
should be of interest.

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Peter Jakobsson
2014-02-11 01:42:57 UTC
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Post by David Adams
If not, you can move to dedicated hosting
Indeed. And we wouldn't be any worse off than we are today.

In fact while you were posting that, I just reflected that 4D probably are reluctant to add another platform for which to develop and test, in which case I decided that they should just ditch Windows and Mac (for the server) and go all-in Linux.

Windows and Mac are on their way out anyway as database server platforms. They are:

[1] - too expensive

[2] - not 'cloud frendly'

[3] - both have lost their original founders so the only way is down

[4] - have both become too obsessed with touch interfaces to be excited about a server roadmap

I'm sure LR could do it on the back of an envelope over a Croque Monsieur. Somebody just has to haul him off Wakanda for long enough to get it to alpha stage and then we'll test it from there.

Peter


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Arnaud de Montard
2014-02-11 08:35:59 UTC
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Post by Peter Jakobsson
I'm sure LR could do it on the back of an envelope over a Croque Monsieur.
the future 4D server will be greasy :-D

I've heard more than once from 4D that server interface makes it not possible, but that it will be easy when the server will be "faceless" (even without croque monsieur).
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Alan Chan
2014-02-11 10:07:46 UTC
Permalink
The issue is who (your customers) is willing to pay. We still have some
die-hard mac users who insisted in everything on Mac. One of them even
ordered the latest Mac Pro to be their new server!!! It's a total waste of
money. The point is, they're willing to pay. Most linux users are
extremely price conscious.

Alan Chan
Post by Justin Will
I would vote for Linux long before OSX. Ever since Apple killed the X
Serve I have zero customers wanting 4D server on OSX. On the flip side
putting 4D on Linux really opens up the cloud/vm world and reduces
deployment costs by eliminating the need to pay the MS server license.
Like it or not Apple killed much of its hope for any real acceptance in
corporate IT environments when it killed the X Serve. There is no way I
can convince any of my larger clients to use a Mac Mini when every other
piece of their infrastructure is actual server hardware installed in
racks with features like dual power supplies, large raids etc. I'd vote
over and over again for 64 bit 4D server on Linux before 4D server 64 bit
on OSX.
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Nigel Greenlee
2014-02-13 18:20:16 UTC
Permalink
Ok

... lets throw this one in the air and see who we can upset.

I don't think 4D should waste time and money on developing a full suite of 4D products on Linux version,(i even doubt its worth time investing in a 64 bit OSX version for the reasons stated by others).

The real money is in Cloud and VM and of course the big money area in this is using elastic servers.

What we REALLY need is a model to deploy(a headless) 4D server on a remote platform. That COULD be for Linux(as well as others) and probably a simpler thing to implement for 4D as they would not be producing the full suite of 4D to run on Linux or need to even create a GUI on Linux-, monitor it through a browser(emulating the 4D server interface), which of course could be running on the same Linux box.

Here is the BIG change i really would want from 4D though..we should be able to auto implement additional licences on the fly on a rental basis(time-minute-week-month-year-pick your poison) with a charge through from 4D(helping their revenues-so 4D server could be like an Amazon service)-that would probably help anyone sell more systems whether the system was deployed on a remote VM machine or a Mac-MIni or $100 tower

...why i would even be able to deploy a 4D server on my Raspberry PI or on a WD NAS drive:(in theory):P

..its beginning to sound like something more Javascripty to me...
Post by Alan Chan
The issue is who (your customers) is willing to pay. We still have some
die-hard mac users who insisted in everything on Mac. One of them even
ordered the latest Mac Pro to be their new server!!! It's a total waste of
money. The point is, they're willing to pay. Most linux users are
extremely price conscious.
Alan Chan
Post by Justin Will
I would vote for Linux long before OSX. Ever since Apple killed the X
Serve I have zero customers wanting 4D server on OSX. On the flip side
putting 4D on Linux really opens up the cloud/vm world and reduces
deployment costs by eliminating the need to pay the MS server license.
Like it or not Apple killed much of its hope for any real acceptance in
corporate IT environments when it killed the X Serve. There is no way I
can convince any of my larger clients to use a Mac Mini when every other
piece of their infrastructure is actual server hardware installed in
racks with features like dual power supplies, large raids etc. I'd vote
over and over again for 64 bit 4D server on Linux before 4D server 64 bit
on OSX.
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Bernd Fröhlich
2014-02-11 12:06:05 UTC
Permalink
Post by Alan Chan
One of them even
ordered the latest Mac Pro to be their new server!!! It's a total waste of
money.
"While many people, mostly of the troll variety, will be running around the Web screaming "so expensive!" the new Mac Pro is anything but when considering what's in the package. I joked on Twitter that Apple's Mac Pro deal is this: "buy two discounted FirePro W9000 cards and get a workstation for free," and that's not an exaggeration."

From
<http://arstechnica.com/apple/2014/01/two-steps-forward-a-review-of-the-2013-mac-pro/>

Greetings from Germany,
Bernd Fröhlich

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Fernando-Juan Santos
2014-02-11 14:34:00 UTC
Permalink
Post by Bernd Fröhlich
Post by Alan Chan
One of them even
ordered the latest Mac Pro to be their new server!!! It's a total waste of
money.
"While many people, mostly of the troll variety,
will be running around the Web screaming "so
expensive!" the new Mac Pro is anything but when
considering what's in the package. I joked on
Twitter that Apple's Mac Pro deal is this: "buy
two discounted FirePro W9000 cards and get a
workstation for free," and that's not an
exaggeration."
From
<http://arstechnica.com/apple/2014/01/two-steps-forward-a-review-of-the-2013-mac-pro/>
Greetings from Germany,
Bernd Fröhlich
Why not? 4D is data just data. What about Cores ?
Now computers have 2 or more. Is like to play
piano with one hand ( but you can play with 4
hands.

Even in single user this should be present.


PS freeBSD is using GPGPU as OS level ;-)
--
saludetes, regards, cordialement

un maquero irreverente desde el 1984

Fernando-Juan Santos Hernández


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Chip Scheide
2014-02-11 15:26:25 UTC
Permalink
4D has a major problem with multi-core computers :
- the 'legacy language' of 4D, as it is currently written and 4D inc has not laid out a road map to change this, is single threaded - regardless of 16/32/64/128 bit OS - this limits at least some of 4D's multi core cpu capabilities.

4D also has a problem with OS X, and probably by extension all other *nix systems:
- Carbon. Apple's older, now depereciated, API.

As I understand, OS X gets a 64bit server/client next version. Someone can correct me on this, if I am wrong.
At that time or soon there-after, to me, it should be possible to move at least the server to *nix, most likely would be support for FreeBSD, as I recall this is the underlying OS for OS X.

That leaves 2 other issues:
1 - is 4D inc willing to do this? that only LR, or some other similarly positioned person inside 4D inc can say.
2 - are there OS version specific 'quirks' that would need to be addressed with various 'flavors' of *nix? By this I mean, does an application written and tested on say RedHat work on FreeBSD, or Ubantu, or other *nix systems without any change(s)?

My guess, I do not really work with *nix systems so the validity of this statement is probably weak at best :), is no.
You may say, but xxxx application moves across *nix systems, however they are not trying to support 2 other disparate OSes (Windows and OS X) through proprietary C/S connections.

In my limited experience, many applications need to be compiled on/for the platform they are running on. I ran into this with a program I had to install at my previous work place called 'mummers'. There was a version of Knopix(sp?) installed, found I need to get a bunch of supporting software DLed to the machine to get the 'mummers' program to compile, after I got that software, I then found I needed I different OS as 'mummers' would not compile on the version of Knopix(sp?) that was there. After screwing around with trying to get a newer version of Knopix to install, and failing.. I installed a current, at the time, version of Ubantu and went through the extra software DLs and then *finally* was able to get the program to compile and run.

I would also think that 4D inc, having been generally a 'Plug and Play' software company might find this sort of installation headache to be undesirable.


Most of this is my opinion, your milage may vary....
Chip
Post by Bernd Fröhlich
Post by Alan Chan
One of them even
ordered the latest Mac Pro to be their new server!!! It's a total waste of
money.
"While many people, mostly of the troll variety, will be running
around the Web screaming "so expensive!" the new Mac Pro is anything
but when considering what's in the package. I joked on Twitter that
Apple's Mac Pro deal is this: "buy two discounted FirePro W9000
cards and get a workstation for free," and that's not an
exaggeration."
From
<http://arstechnica.com/apple/2014/01/two-steps-forward-a-review-of-the-2013-mac-pro/>
Greetings from Germany,
Bernd Fröhlich
Why not? 4D is data just data. What about Cores ? Now computers have
2 or more. Is like to play piano with one hand ( but you can play
with 4 hands.
Even in single user this should be present.
PS freeBSD is using GPGPU as OS level ;-)
--
saludetes, regards, cordialement
un maquero irreverente desde el 1984
Fernando-Juan Santos Hernández
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4D v13 is available now - with more than 200 new features to make
your applications richer and faster
http://www.4d.com/products/new.html
4D Internet Users Group (4D iNUG)
FAQ: http://lists.4d.com/faqnug.html
Archive: http://lists.4d.com/archives.html
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**********************************************************************
4D v13 is available now - with more than 200 new features to make
your applications richer and faster
http://www.4d.com/products/new.html

4D Internet Users Group (4D iNUG)
FAQ: http://lists.4d.com/faqnug.html
Archive: http://lists.4d.com/archives.html
Options: https://lists.4d.com/mailman/options/4d_tech
Unsub: mailto:4D_Tech-Unsubscribe-d2/MUvgItPNWk0Htik3J/***@public.gmane.org
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