1. World of HELIOS: Apple Big Sur & 64-bit ARM Macs
2. HELIOS G8 on its way – preview2 available
3. New HELIOS LanTest – storage latency testing
HELIOS Newsletter 02/2020
Dear HELIOS client,

Welcome to the latest information from the world of HELIOS. Keep your networking lead and stay one step ahead. Turn your colleagues on to this newsletter as well, subscription details are below.

Your HELIOS team

Helmut Tschemernjak, CEO & President
1. World of HELIOS: Apple Big Sur & 64-bit ARM Macs
This year’s WWDC was somewhat very special: no travelling to the US while still getting very important information about developments at Apple which will impact all of us. I will cover the two most important topics for Mac environments.

Big Sur: The next macOS release will be called version 11 (rather than macOS 10.x) and comes with a major user interface upgrade. It takes gadgets from iOS and brings it to the Mac. It will also enhance web browsing, come with a virtualization API which hopefully allows us to run multiple macOS versions and other OS’s on one Mac.

In terms of networked Mac clients: AFP is fully supported and works perfectly including Spotlight search support, HELIOS Bonjour printer driver, HELIOS Admin, and our other tools. Our new HELIOS G8 release fully supports macOS clients with Big Sur.

ARM Macs: Apple calls it Apple Silicon which is basically a 64-bit ARM processor made by Apple. This is very interesting and trend-setting, because the ARM processors are very powerful and energy saving. The Apple ARM 64-bit processors are already used in the iPhone, iPad and Apple TV, where the quantities are 20 times larger than for Macs. All this Apple ARM CPU know-how will now be transferred to future Macs.

We are already developing on 64-bit ARM Macs using the Apple Developer Transition Kit (DTK). I can tell you, the migration to the ARM Macs will be easy for our users, a big step forward and I am confident that this is the right way to go.

Enjoy this newsletter.

Helmut Tschemernjak
HELIOS Software GmbH

2. HELIOS G8 on its way – preview2 available
We are proud to announce our upcoming HELIOS G8 product generation, shortly named G8, which is available for preview testing. G8 basically represents a strong continuation of the HELIOS product family. The changes can be summarized:
  • New operating system support – stay on top of current server and client OS’s
  • New productivity support – boosts collaboration and production quality
  • New virtualization support – a server VM with continuous data protection
The easiest way to test drive is to start the new Virtual Server Appliance (VSA) 3 VM and get used to G8. The new VSA 3 comes with a continuous data protection, which means creating automatic snapshots every hour/day/week/month without the need to configure anything – getting access to previous data via regular HELIOS volumes or switching the entire server back in time. This kind of operational storage security used to be very complex and expensive in the past. With G8, this is a child’s play, without extra costs.

G8 test drives can also be installed on top of any Linux, Solaris, Mac or Windows system. A complete installer media is available for all platforms.

Here you can find what’s new in G8 for each product:
In addition, you will find a Q & A section which will regularly be updated with additional questions/answers in the “New Features in Base G8” description.

The G8 preview release is targeted to test drive features and to verify compatibility. It is not qualified for final production, although we are getting close to a final G8 version. HELIOS customers and partners can download the G8 release in their HELIOS Symphony “Media Library”, prospects are welcome to contact the HELIOS partner in their region.

We look forward to a successful preview period and to a final G8 product release.

3. New HELIOS LanTest – storage latency testing
HELIOS LanTest, the network performance and reliability testing solution for Mac and Windows clients receives a major upgrade: storage latency testing which measures the random access time to a connected storage. Today’s server storage access for clients can be very complex: it includes client network connection, file server caching, raid controller caching, various RAID configurations, connected disks (e.g. SAS, Fibre Channel, iSCSI), and finally the physical disk seek and read operation.

The new HELIOS LanTest for macOS (included in the G8 preview2 release) will perform such disk latency tests (called “Seek test” within LanTest) to present the end-to-end latency in milliseconds.

Many performance problems are not just related to “how many MB per second can I transfer”. Rather, it is a matter of opening a folder on the server taking a long time, or the Mac is almost freezing when working with server files, or saving/loading InDesign files is awfully slow, or sometimes the server is almost frozen.

We are confident that the new HELIOS LanTest disk latency testing will help isolate storage access bottlenecks.

PS: the new LanTest is included in the “HELIOS Applications” volume on the G8 release. The disk latency testing is included in the Mac LanTest version, Windows LanTest will follow. Disk latency testing will create a large test file (e.g. 100 GB) to present true disk latency (seek & read) times.
Contact us with any questions or feedback, to arrange a personal
consultation or to find a sales partner in your region:
Smart Ideas for Better Networking.
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