MySQL To Percona Server Gottcha

Decided to replace the aging MySQL 5.1.x on a CentOS Box with a newer Percona Server 5.6. First step was to update MySQL 5.1 to 5.5. This went relatively smoothly after I figured out some mySQL transaction kung-fu and ran mysql_upgrade. Step two was to replace it with Percona Server. It installed fine. Almost to simple. So naturally I ran:

etc/init.d/mysql start

which resulted in a dreaded:

Starting MySQL (Percona Server).... ERROR! The server quit without updating PID file (/var/lib/mysql/SERVERNAME.pid)

After a few minutes of pouring through the logs I noticed this little nugget:

2015-04-25 19:18:16 18234 [ERROR] /usr/sbin/mysqld: unknown variable 'table_cache=7K'

Apparently around MySQL 5.1.3 they replaced table_cache with table_open_cache. A simple rename in my.ini, and we’re on our way. Now running a little faster thanks to some much newer DB binaries.

AeroFarms Using Technology To Grow Food

There’s been a fair amount of research in the past few years about more scalable and environmentally friendly ways to grow food. AeroFarms is embarking on an ambitious plan to put some of technology to work with a Newark, NJ based farm in an old factory.

The basic idea is using technology like energy efficient LED lighting, carefully monitored watering and nutrition by using a mist (vs planting in soil). Space is optimized by stacking them similar to servers in a data center. The end result is you can grow edible plants in a very fast, efficient, predictable way. No more weather ruining crops, thousands of acres of land devoted to farming.

Just imagine if one day this could get deployed to places like Africa. Efficient solar powered farming could change how Africa does food. It could become much more practical to farm in desert places.

F-35 Augmented Reality Helmet

F35 Helmet

The F-35 helmet is one of the most impressive things you’ll see technology wise this year. It will take a long while, but eventually augmented reality will get better, more compact, and cheaper until it will his the civilian market. No more “blind spots” in a car. No more being unable to see the obstruction in front of the large truck ahead of you. I think there’s a good chance we’ll see this hit the market before we’ll see self driving cars prolific enough to remove the “driver”.

Splashdown of EFT-1

Orion Test Successful EFT-1

This is a pretty historic day. Orion is the future NASA and manned exploration of space for the US. It’s first flight was a success. It’s just like Mercury, Gemini or Apollo but modern. Who knows. We may see this thing being used to push humans into space to explore new worlds. It’s a glimmer of hope that NASA will still be able to move science forward.

Google Giving Preference To SSL

Looks like I beat this one by a few months. SSL is now a ranking signal for Google. I switched this and a few other sites over to SSL a few months ago, while enabling SPDY and a few other things I’m playing around with. So far this has been pretty painless and actually simplified a few things. Doing this at scale with legacy infrastructure and 3rd parties however is a whole different ballgame. It will take a while for this switch to happen for bigger players not already on board.

Heartbleed and OpenSSL

Heartbleed

Heartbleed is a pretty nasty security bug. Thankfully it can be fixed by a quick package update (unless you’re mod_spdy among other culprits (this one got me briefly). Then for good measure revoke certs and reissue to make sure nothing is left to chance. Need to make sure everything built on OpenSSL is not impacted.

While at it, I made a few tweaks to SSL configurations to hopefully let more traffic us Forward Secrecy which is a step forward.

What’s disappointing is that security researchers rather than let vendors have a few days to update and push fixes decided to get a domain name and spiffy graphic then 0 day the internet. Not terribly professional.