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Alleged Steve Jobs e-mail says 'hardly anyone' was buying Apple's Xserves - Page 2

post #41 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by NomadMac View Post

Apple pulled the XServes years ago from MacWorld leaving us with just consumer gear and little reason for professionals to attend.
Apple never displayed them in a retail store that I ever saw.
Apple spent little on advertising them.

And you're surprised hardly anybody is buying them?

What enterprise servers DO you see advertised? Can you name any of the Cisco servers being advertised right now?

Trade magazines are the only place you will see this type of gear, and Apple actually did advertise in those areas often.

The advertising for this is done to the solution providers, not to the general public.
post #42 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by Futuristic View Post

I'm not an IT guy, but I'm bummed that Apple seems to be abandoning the enterprise market. IF Apple is trying to make itself into a "consumer electronics" company, I think that's a terrible idea.

Since when was Apple NOT a consumer electronics company. It has never had any appreciable penetration into any IT shops that weren't just focused on a Mac front end (creative studios, etc.) and maybe some schools and labs.
As has been rightly said - there is no room for high priced servers in a world where that market has been fully commoditized.
You may have a dream but it makes little sense for Apple to pursue it when its strategy is so clearly on the consumer market which has driven 99% of Apple's growth in the last decade. Its stock price expects incremental year on year growth in the $20Bn range - seriously - they are expected to make $20Bn more this year than last. If they don't the market will punish the stock price so why spend any bandwidth on maintaining a slow selling, tiny revenue piece of kit like the XServe?
post #43 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by Capnbob View Post

Since when was Apple NOT a consumer electronics company. It has never had any appreciable penetration into any IT shops that weren't just focused on a Mac front end (creative studios, etc.) and maybe some schools and labs.

I know several people who use them for the QuickTime streaming server. Of course you can use the Free Darwin version for i386 on Windows if you wanted to.

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post #44 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by nealg View Post

I am sure that for those that committed to this product this announcement is a real pain.

Neal

It is their own stupid fault for backing the wrong horse.
post #45 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve-J View Post

It is their own stupid fault for backing the wrong horse.

And now we have to wonder what will become of the server software itself.

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post #46 of 135
Hey,

I sent an email to Jobs as well and I got the same exact response, word for word. Seems strange he would send the same response or maybe he just keeps responding this way to everyone.
post #47 of 135
I work for a company of about 100 people with Mac servers. To the best of my knowledge we've always used towers rather than Xserves.
post #48 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by NomadMac View Post

Apple pulled the XServes years ago from MacWorld leaving us with just consumer gear and little reason for professionals to attend.
Apple never displayed them in a retail store that I ever saw.
Apple spent little on advertising them.

When's the last time you saw an HP rack-mount server in Best Buy? IT staff are aware of the products offered by vendors. This is a product your customers seek out if they need them.
post #49 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by Outsider View Post

So when you BTO your servers, you select "Sh*t" from the drop down menu?

Sounds like the same place you derived your logic from. Small business can get buy quite easily using Mac minis as their server infrastructure. Nobody's suggesting Amazon run their store from Mac minis. Your post reminds me of the people who insisted people use Oracle in places where FileMaker Pro could handle easily.
post #50 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by kindwarrior View Post

Does anyone remember OpenDoc (as it really was not as is described now by the powers that want the concept to remain dead).

OpenDoc was dead because it had a failed UI metaphor and had poor support from third party vendors. OpenDoc only made sense from a desktop publishing point of view where you had different elements on a page. But in the end, it wasn't really that difficult to edit a picture in photoshop and import it in PageMaker or Word. It wasn't necessary to have the tools available within the main document, a la AppleWorks. Apple's abandoned Publish and Subscribe system (copied by MS in the form of OLE) was more useful than OpenDoc.

If I recall, Cyberdog was the only shipping product that supported OpenDoc. And it was a poor example. I mean, do you really need your email, web, USENET reader all on a single page?
post #51 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve-J View Post

It is their own stupid fault for backing the wrong horse.

Yup, should'a bought Windows...
post #52 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by mstone View Post

One reason IT people were not that interested in Xserve is because it is a completely foreign OS for them. I would speculate that almost every Xserve was maintained by the person who bought it and installed it. If that person goes away, nobody knows how to work on it. Unlike Windows and Linux where there are millions of regular techs that can jump in and manage it at a moments notice.


A foreign OS? For Linux guys, Windows will be more foreign that Mac OS X. A more difficult to maintain and secure.

I haven't seen a Linux guy using Redhat's GUI for anything. It's CLI (command line) and the Xserve with Mac OS X server is so similar that they should be able to administer an Xserve in minutes.

After all, OS X server added a collection of open source server software that is used in Linux just the same.
post #53 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by Capnbob View Post

Since when was Apple NOT a consumer electronics company. It has never had any appreciable penetration into any IT shops that weren't just focused on a Mac front end (creative studios, etc.) and maybe some schools and labs.

Of course, they've always been a "consumer electronics company" in the sense that they made their products not only easy to use, but pretty to look at as well; attributes that aren't that meaningful to IT personnel, engineers and computer geeks. I simply meant that when they were "Apple Computer, Inc.", they were primarily a computer company, but now that they've dropped the "Computer" from their name, they're telling the world that they've shifting their focus from computers to consumer electronics.
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post #54 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kolchak View Post

What's to keep people from building Hackintosh servers if they need rack mount? Pick up a 4U case, throw in a decent PS, mobo, Core i7, lots of RAM, a Silicon Image RAID controller and four hard drives. Install OS X Server and you should be good to go for less than $1000. Any motherboard that supports Snow Leopard well, like Gigbabyte's P55 series, should run SL server. Better yet, all the little problems that might afflict a Hackintosh system wouldn't matter as much where a server is concerned, if at all. No Quartz Extreme? Who cares? No audio? Who needs it? Can't sleep the system? Nobody puts servers to sleep anyway.

I can't believe what I am reading. Servers are the backbone of any company that is big enough to care about their data.
And those servers have to be redundant, reliable and backed by support that maintains the software and hardware.

Wether those are rackmount servers in house, offsite in a data center or in the cloud, virtualized or not, it's all running on similar machines.

Not mainframes, not Mac minis, not garage sale hackintoshes, the majority are 2U, 1U rackmount servers and blades.
post #55 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by mstone View Post

One reason IT people were not that interested in Xserve is because it is a completely foreign OS for them. I would speculate that almost every Xserve was maintained by the person who bought it and installed it. If that person goes away, nobody knows how to work on it. Unlike Windows and Linux where there are millions of regular techs that can jump in and manage it at a moments notice.

Mac OS X Server is basically Unix with a candy coating, so there's no reason that anyone familiar with Unix/Linux wouldn't be able to work comfortably in an OS X environment. If they don't like the GUI, they can always open up a terminal and do everything via command line.
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post #56 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by Futuristic View Post

Of course, they've always been a "consumer electronics company" in the sense that they made their products not only easy to use, but pretty to look at as well; attributes that aren't that meaningful to IT personnel, engineers and computer geeks. I simply meant that when they were "Apple Computer, Inc.", they were primarily a computer company, but now that they've dropped the "Computer" from their name, they're telling the world that they've shifting their focus from computers to consumer electronics.

I think you have the right idea but are stating the wrong message.

When Apple removed Computer from their name they well a long way from "shifting their focus from computers to consumer electronics The iPod was already a huge part of their company and had been for years.

On top of that, PCs are consumer products and are, obviously, electronic. We may not define them as CE but if we go back to the original Apple computer that is exactly what Apple was founded on. They brought the computer to the consumer. The Mac with its GUI was the evolution of that, and everything since then has made it easier for the average consumer to use these once-complex devices.

We can split hairs over whether CE are computers that one personally uses, if Macs are PCs and so forth, but at the end of the day Apple did not stop making Macs simply because they dropped the now pointless Computer from their name.
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post #57 of 135
The xServers are not on the VMware hardware compatbility list and MOST datacenter installations of more than a few servers are using VMware now days, because you can run dozens of virtual servers on one physical piece of hardware and save tons on money on space/power/hardware.

Look at Cisco, their new server line is 100% geared towards virtualization. Dell/IBM/HP are all pushing VMware/Hyper-V/Xen server compatiblity with all of their new hardware.

If Apple wants to play in the server market they need to get on board with VMware so that their servers can be a virtual server host, of course VMware would probably want them to license OSX server so that it can be virtualized in VMware which I dont see Apple being willing to do.

Its a shame that they wont come up with an OSX license to allow it to run in a virtualized environement.
post #58 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wolfman View Post

A foreign OS? For Linux guys, Windows will be more foreign that Mac OS X. A more difficult to maintain and secure.

I haven't seen a Linux guy using Redhat's GUI for anything. It's CLI (command line) and the Xserve with Mac OS X server is so similar that they should be able to administer an Xserve in minutes.

After all, OS X server added a collection of open source server software that is used in Linux just the same.

You would think so but nothing is in the same place as Linux

You won't find /etc/init.d or /var/www or /etc/httpd/httpd.conf

It is an easter egg hunt.

With Apple you are expected to use the server admin app.

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post #59 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gustav View Post

Sounds like the same place you derived your logic from. Small business can get buy quite easily using Mac minis as their server infrastructure. Nobody's suggesting Amazon run their store from Mac minis. Your post reminds me of the people who insisted people use Oracle in places where FileMaker Pro could handle easily.

Small businesses using Mac minis as their server infrastructure? Maybe connect it to a $50 Linksys router?

I agree with SoHo, but supporting 50-100 people? For what? Email, File serving, Calendaring?
While I like a Mac mini, they are good to serve a small work group, no more than that.
I can see Mac Pro's; their form factor/size is just not great. At least they have fast IO, expandability for fibre storage and increased network speed and can be swapped reasonably quick if a failure occurs due to their drive sleds.

Mac minis have none of that.
post #60 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by Onhka View Post

The Xserve was not underpowered or overpriced and Virginia Tech has proven.

As for hinting that Apple abandoning the enterprise market, is FUD. The primary reason Apple is perceived as not-enterprise friendly comes from the comparatively relative lack of interest from third-party independent professional consultants.

Not that there is not interest, it is just a simple fact that there is less need of their expertise to use a Mac, and internal IT personnel has always had a history to shun the Mac for fear of losing their jobs. Keep in mind, that most internal server systems are running in most part on legacy systems which are gradually modified or updated on a needs basis. And most of the needs fulfillment is based on having the necessary monies to do so.

As some have demonstrated, e.g., Virginia Tech, the casinos in Vegas, etc., the Mac makes a pretty damn good and cost-effective server using Mac Minis and Mac Pros, with or without Xserve. A strategy that is building significantly around the world.

that was the G5 days

today HP Proliants are so amazingly powerful and scale a lot better compared to the xserve.

the xserve is still only 3 internal drives and 32GB of RAM. HP 1U servers can take 8 drives internally and 192GB RAM
post #61 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by mstone View Post

And now we have to wonder what will become of the server software itself.

Although Apple is not selling a lot of XServes, it does not mean Apple is not selling a lot of servers.
Apple said its most popular server has been the Mac mini server.
These are primarily sold to small businesses and schools where mere mortals have to administer the server. Apple still has the best product for this market and it isn't going anywhere. If anything, Apple may put more resources into making the Mac mini and Mac Pro better Server hardware.
post #62 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by dyler View Post

Hey,

I sent an email to Jobs as well and I got the same exact response, word for word. Seems strange he would send the same response or maybe he just keeps responding this way to everyone.

copy, paste, rinse, repeat
post #63 of 135
The XServe hardware was great I think the problem, speaking as a Linux server admin, and Mac desktop user, this:

'Traditional Unix' such as Linux, Solaris etc offer full flexibility & customisation but you have to roll your sleeves up and get dirty with the command line and config files to do it

Windows Server offers full flexibility & customisation in a 100% point & click GUI

Mac OS X Server tried to straddle both and never quite managed to get a firm footing in either approach. Apple provided an easy to user GUI to configure the server software like Apache, Samba, Postfix etc, but it only offered basic configuration.

If you wanted to do anything more advanced you had to dive under the hood and edit the configuration files, and at that point Apple's shiny GUI tools broke and stopped working because you'd modified Apple default config - from then on you might as well be using Linux and save yourself the comparatively huge licensing fee for OS X Server.

If on the other hand you wanted full configuration ability purely through the GUI you were better off with Windows Server.

Mac OS X Server was neither one nor the other. Plus as others have pointed out it wasnt promoted properly but Apple seems to take this approach with the Mac in general compared to the iPod, iPhone & iPad
post #64 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by mstone View Post

You would think so but nothing is in the same place as Linux

You won't find /etc/init.d or /var/www or /etc/httpd/httpd.conf

It is an easter egg hunt.

With Apple you are expected to use the server admin app.

Are you serious? An easter egg hunt in command line?

If somebody makes a living administering Linux servers, they live and breath CLI. If a system admin can't find the httpd.conf for either server and their associates virtual host files in a heartbeat, they should look for a new job.

I am also not sure where you get the idea that Apple expects you to use the server admin app.
Apple's Server documentation describes each function and task to be performed either in command line or via app.
post #65 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

I think you have the right idea but are stating the wrong message.

When Apple removed Computer from their name they well a long way from "shifting their focus from computers to consumer electronics The iPod was already a huge part of their company and had been for years.

On top of that, PCs are consumer products and are, obviously, electronic. We may not define them as CE but if we go back to the original Apple computer that is exactly what Apple was founded on. They brought the computer to the consumer. The Mac with its GUI was the evolution of that, and everything since then has made it easier for the average consumer to use these once-complex devices.

We can split hairs over whether CE are computers that one personally uses, if Macs are PCs and so forth, but at the end of the day Apple did not stop making Macs simply because they dropped the now pointless Computer from their name.

Yup. You basically said what I was trying to say, but in better words. Damn you.
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post #66 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wolfman View Post

Are you serious? An easter egg hunt in command line?

If somebody makes a living administering Linux servers, they live and breath CLI. If a system admin can't find the httpd.conf for either server and their associates virtual host files in a heartbeat, they should look for a new job.

I am also not sure where you get the idea that Apple expects you to use the server admin app.
Apple's Server documentation describes each function and task to be performed either in command line or via app.


/root much?

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post #67 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by MyopiaRocks View Post

I suppose an apple forum is the wrong place to ask this question, but:
- How many of you have rack-mounted servers at your company?
- For those of you who do, what OS?

my clients have hundreds or thousands of blades and rack servers running Solaris, Linux or AIX. far down the list is HP-UX.
post #68 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nobodyy View Post

I don't see where you would think that Mac Minis would make a poor server infrastructure.

the hard drive. the consumer-level hard drive in the Mac Mini won't survive long under data centre workloads.
post #69 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by DESuserIGN View Post

Or how about this? An Apple blade system with 20 quad core CPUs per 2U using low power, high performance, souped up AppleTV boards in them.

twenty quad core CPUs in an enclosure that's not even 10cm high?!
post #70 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by bloggerblog View Post

The lack of stability and support for OSX Server killed the X-Serve and X Serve Raid.

Lack of stability? What do you mean? The Xserves I've installed in 2002 only required a reboot whenever I did major updates to the software.
post #71 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave K. View Post

Best of luck to anyone building a server infrastructure using Mac Mini's... Remember to keep your resume up to date.

Except leave off the part where you built a sever infrastructure with Mac Minis.

Seriously, the Mac Mini Server is only really designed to handle up to 20 users. Suggesting it as an XServe replacement is hardly apt. The very best I can come up with long-term is to perhaps build Hacintosh rackmounts by putting the x386 project onto HP servers. Of course, some of the hardware won't be supported (especially the monitoring) but it'd be better than trying to cram a Mini or Pro into a datacenter.
post #72 of 135
I would have loved to use an Xserve, but come on... 4 HDD bays? 2.999?

I have a Client who wanted a fileserver. After evaluating the Xserve, I set up a server for about 1.200 using Linux and netatalk for AFP Sharing.

Works like a charm.
Now running on a 20" aluminium iMac (Fall 2008), as well as a Macboook Pro 13" (mid 2009) and an iPhone.
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post #73 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wolfman View Post

If somebody makes a living administering Linux servers, they live and breath CLI. If a system admin can't find the httpd.conf for either server and their associates virtual host files in a heartbeat, they should look for a new job.

I am also not sure where you get the idea that Apple expects you to use the server admin app.
Apple's Server documentation describes each function and task to be performed either in command line or via app.

While I agree with most of what you say, it is easy to answer where one would get the idea of Apple expecting you to use the server admin app.: The exam. If you want to become an ACTC and ACSA, you must know the server admin. app inside and out or you just won't pass. Ever since Apple started offering certifications, students have been warned (at least by the better ACT's) that "command line is never the answer on the exam, even if it is in real life." \
post #74 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by mstone View Post

You would think so but nothing is in the same place as Linux

You won't find /etc/init.d or /var/www or /etc/httpd/httpd.conf

It is an easter egg hunt.

But I guess there are also BSD guys, they should feel more familiar in OS X than the Linux guys.
post #75 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by NomadMac View Post

Apple pulled the XServes years ago from MacWorld leaving us with just consumer gear and little reason for professionals to attend.
Apple never displayed them in a retail store that I ever saw.
Apple spent little on advertising them.

And you're surprised hardly anybody is buying them?

I was never terribly impressed by the XServe hardware - there were better 1G packages out there. Would rather run MacOSX server on a MPro anyway.
post #76 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by noirdesir View Post

But I guess there are also BSD guys, they should feel more familiar in OS X than the Linux guys.

Yes this made me curious so I googled this which I bookmarked as I think it may be useful from time to time

http://wiki.apache.org/httpd/DistrosDefaultLayout

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post #77 of 135
We do. We run Solaris, Linux, AIX, HPUX and Windows on various servers, no OS X.

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post #78 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by mstone View Post

/root much?

Public-facing Mac OS X server machines simply can't be managed via server admin app and be secure as the software settings are inherently outdated and simply not PCI compliant.

We do use a lot of Xserve's for web/email services and file services internally.
post #79 of 135
I know that a lot of you have asked specifically what it is people used XServe for, and I can tell you that I only have two of them. I use them for software to management my Enterprise Mac environment. My management suite is, for the most part, only supported on OS X Server. That limits me on what type of hardware I can run that suite on, but I will die before I give up the management suite I'm using. However, options for the supported OS for my management suite may expand in the near future.

The other things I use it for are very Apple specific: NetBoot and Apple Software Update Services (ASUS). I can control the updates my managed clients get with my own internal ASUS.

I was still seriously considering using Podcast Server for my work flows, but that's going to be on hold for sure now.

All of these services can be replicated on a Mac Pro easily enough, but in terms of a box that's truly geared for Enterprise the Mac Pro is not. It lacks redundant power supplies and is not easily put into a rack that has controlled airflow (you know, the gaps the stupid handles on the top and bottom have), but I'm sure something could be rigged there for another cost. Then VOILA! I have a server that now takes up three times as much space. PERFECT! The mini is quite a joke as a server for anything real process intensive or for handling larger amounts of I/O. At least with a Mac Pro I can bind my NICs together for redundancy (I assume). I can also still do RAID in a Mac Pro.

Of course Mini servers sell a lot. They're stupid cheap for small offices and development servers.

So I think I have good reasons to need that specific hardware, but it's very specific uses. So to see a response like hardly anyone was buying them...sure if you compare it to the numbers of other rack and blade servers.

If I could virtualize OS X Server in an ESX cluster, I could live with that, but I am still not a fan of virtualization for certain things. I'd much rather see Apple work with a server manufacturer and certify some hardware to be supported. It's quite a smart move really to ditch your own hardware, which doesn't turn a profit like Apple is use to seeing (I assume) compared to other things they sell, and allow someone else who IS efficient and moves more boxes to run OS X Server.

Apple has a plan, it's just waiting now to hear about it. Will it be new hardware? I doubt it would be Apple's own creation. I also think it's CRAP to have a period where you are seriously telling people to purchase Mac Pros and Minis in the interim if you are planning new hardware. Will they expand the EULA for virtualization? That would be nice for many Enterprise people. Will they offer Apple specific application hosting in the Apple Cloud in NC? More than likely, which helps people that are allowed to work in cloud environments and that don't have such bandwidth intensive needs. Some organizations have rules about anything leaving their own network and facilities.

OS X Server is not dead, if it was it would have died with the XServe. There are just a lot of scenarios that Apple could play out. Although I'm not happy about it, I'll have to just sit back and go along for the ride and see if it just crashes head long into a wall...
post #80 of 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by ktappe View Post

While I agree with most of what you say, it is easy to answer where one would get the idea of Apple expecting you to use the server admin app.: The exam. If you want to become an ACTC and ACSA, you must know the server admin. app inside and out or you just won't pass. Ever since Apple started offering certifications, students have been warned (at least by the better ACT's) that "command line is never the answer on the exam, even if it is in real life." \

You are absolutely right. But this is the same issue that Apple has had with their servers & software for the enterprise. Lack of good, qualified support.
Apple would tell you that if the Server app doesn't have it, you don't need it or that software fixes are coming "soon", even if they are critical.

Not an answer you can tell your customers.
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