Lizamoon Infects 4,000,000 websites

Personally, I find it very sad that this many sites have been vulnerable to SQL injection hacks. Read more…

MySQL vs. MSSQL on the Amazon Cloud

Recently I’ve been working on a application that requires some serious database performance and had chosen MySQL as the engine based on the common wisdom that MySQL is faster, and cheaper, than MSSQL. After some serious performance problems on a couple of local machines, I decided to use Amazon’s MySQL RDS service and compare it’s performance to their Windows 2008 / MSSQL 2008 instance. This is by no means and exhaustive study, but it is informative at least.

Amazon Instance Type

  • Large Instance 7.5 GB of memory, 4 EC2 Compute Units (2 virtual cores with 2 EC2 Compute Units each), 850 GB of local instance storage, 64-bit platform

Table Structure

  • 5 VarChar(50) columns
  • ~2.1 Million Records
  • Un-Indexed
  • No Primary or Foreign Key Constraints

SQL Process

  • Table data copy using: INSERT INTO myTable2 (SELECT * FROM myTable1)

Processing Time

  • MySQL: Killed at +15 minutes
  • MSSQL: Completed at 1 minute 33 seconds

For large data moving operations, the winner is clear — MSSQL outperforms MySQL by an enormous margin. In further testing I’ve also found simple select operations on MySQL to be lacking as well. Looks like Microsoft had a leg up on the database world finally.

Running Windows 7 Nativity on a Macbook Pro

Windows 7Ever since Windows 7 Beta was released a few months ago, I’ve been hearing great things. So, I decided to try installing it through VMware Fusion and see what all the huff was about. Much to my surprise, it really looks like Microsoft got this one right.

Me, like most others, had decided against moving to Windows Vista because of speed and usability issues. With Windows 7, however, Microsoft it seems has finally finished what it started.

After the collapse of Windows Vista I was snared by the sexiness and speed of the Apple Macbook Pro. Having had some experience with Apple machines back in the mid-90’s I decided to go for it. For a while, I ran bootcamp so that I could use Windows XP and Leopard at the same time, which eventually turned into just Leopard. But Microsoft’s latest release, and the invariable need to run Windows applications, have corralled me back into the world of Windows.

Deciding it was time to run Windows nativity again, I started looking into Bootcamp. Reading several sites, I became aware that Windows 7 was going to be slowed down a little by the bios emulation required to run it. Relentlessly venting this fact my colleagues, and doing some digging, we found that Microsoft had quietly slipped in support for Apple bios replacement, EFI.

Hallelujah! Windows 7 can run native on a Macbook Pro!

So, if you’re like me and want the most performance out of your high end Apple machine and need to run Windows. Go ahead and throw a Windows 7 disk in and get started. Just like with any Windows install, you can delete the drive partitions, even the OSX partition, and format them as NTFS.

Several days of running this configuration have revealed EXCELLENT results. My Macbook Pro has an experience score of 5.0! Much higher than those running Windows 7 via Bootcamp.

Good luck! Please send me any feedback you have with the process as well.

Software Consultants and Source Code

I’ve had some frusterating expereince recently with a software consulting company that we’ve been doing business with. I think this information is prudent to share because there are many organizations that use consulting companies for software development. Hopefully some of these guidelines, that I’ve learned the hard way, will be handy when negotiated your next contract.

Essentially, the rights and transmission of your source code should be outlined in these 4 ways:

  • Define Source Code – The most fundamental, legally acceptable, definition of source code is the code files themselves. But, as most developers would tell you, this is useless without the project structure, repository history, and project files. In our case we had to clarify our statements from requesting source code to requesting a Subversion repository backup as of xx/xx/xxx.
  • Define Ownership of Source Code – Make sure that your vendor contract explicitly states who owns the source code. In some cases, you could find that you own the compiled version of the application, but not the source. Whereupon your vendor will probably request additional fees for the source.
  • Declare Your Terms – Make clear when and how you expect the source code to be delivered. Is it okay if they send to you a year later?
  • Request Transition Assistance – Predefine your time  and rate requirements (e.g., 15 hours @ 130/hr) for post contract support. Some consulting companies have been known to double or triple their rates for support after a development contract is over.

Carolina SaaS Panel Video

Finally, after much adieu the video from the Carolina SaaS user panel is available. Checkout the YouTube video here.

Yap Me. Say what?

A few years ago a couple of buddies of mine, Igor and Victor Jablakov, decided that they could make a cool voice-to-text mobile phone internet gateway. Of course, I chuckled and said; good luck with that. Well, to my delight they’ve succeeded (I should have known since Igor’s background is in Voice Recognition at IBM). A few short weeks ago they were on the stage at TechCrunch 2004 and showed their stuff. So far, the feedback has been outstanding. I think everyone is falling over them selfs for this stuff.

So, what can a speech gateway do? Well, a few applications could be; text messaging, blogging, updating twitter, searching for a restaurant, etc… all via your voice. This sounds a lot better to me so I’m not stuck messing around with T9. Ugh. Check it out at

Also, make sure to check out their demo; very cool.


Taleo’s Acrobats – HR Technology 2007 Continued

The second day or the HR Technology conference in Chicago brought an interesting addition to my understanding of HR and Technology conferences. Taleo decided, in order to gain attention (which succeeded) that they’d hire a couple of acrobats to perform moves that make most of us cringe. To that end, their booth was SWAMPED most of the day. The attention that received was overwhelming.

All I have to say is “brilliant”.

Taleo’s Booth Picture 2 Picture 3