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250-924 dumps with Real exam Questions and Practice Test -

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250-924 Data Protection Troubleshooting for Windows using NetBackup 5.x

Study Guide Prepared by Symantec Dumps Experts 250-924 Dumps and Real Questions

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250-924 exam Dumps Source : Data Protection Troubleshooting for Windows using NetBackup 5.x

Test Code : 250-924
Test Name : Data Protection Troubleshooting for Windows using NetBackup 5.x
Vendor Name : Symantec
: 130 Real Questions

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Symantec Data Protection Troubleshooting for

Symantec Backup Exec troubleshooting performance suggestions | Real Questions and Pass4sure dumps

Symantec Corp.'s Backup Exec is a popular facts backup program for laptop and networked storage systems. despite the fact, as with every software, there are issues that may also be set incorrectly or issues that can go wrong with the intention to sluggish performance. within the case of a backup program, a slipup can drastically raise the time it takes to finished your backup jobs. if you're using Backup Exec and your efficiency isn't what it should be, some troubleshooting can be so as. here's a list of expertise issues to seem to be out for.

Get a baseline: look at ancient backup logs

start via looking at your ancient backup job logs and observe each the full time required to lower back up, the dimension of the backups, and the typical velocity. (Go to the "job video display" tab in Backup Exec and select "job historical past.") examine this to the present speed and total time it takes to complete the job. If there's a big slowdown, you're going to should look greater closely for feasible explanations.

wreck the process down and check the pace of each and every disk or agent being backed up. To do this, set up separate jobs for each and every disk or agent being backed up and back them up one at a time. If one disk or agent seems unusually slow, drill down to examine the trigger through examining the job in detail.

determine that the facts isn't being redirected somewhere else. Some file systems allow a directory to encompass data from a file on an additional server within the backup. this can slow down the entire backup process.

when you are backing up over a network, that you would be able to verify the equipment throughput through comparing the Backup Exec logs with the logs of windows backup (NTBackup) If the Backup Exec logs replicate loads of circumstances that don't display up in the NTBackup logs, further evaluation is referred to as for. If remote backups aren't working, are attempting backing up from one drive to yet another on the far flung server. examine the logs of the Backup Exec backup and the windows backup. (This assumes you're analyzing a power rather than an agent for a software like Microsoft alternate.)

examine for disk fragmentation

make sure to additionally assess that there don't seem to be a lot of small data or directories on the disk. this could slow down backups in tons the equal approach fragmentation does by way of requiring loads of reads to get the tips off the disk for backup.

Disk fragmentation can sluggish performance of Backup Exec greatly. investigate to look how fragmented your disks are and defragment if imperative.

flip compression on

tell the Backup Exec to compress any info which will also be compressed. Some info, like mpegs and jpegs, can not be compressed. if you suspect the difficulty may be within the compression, try switching from hardware to application compression, or vice versa.

be sure your backup application isn't going in the style

Antivirus software will also be a particular issue in Backup Exec. Checking every file being backed up for viruses makes no sense and slows backup efficiency. For greater on the interplay between Backup Exec and Norton Antivirus, see Symantec's Backup Exec discussion board. additionally, the more recent versions of Backup Exec have a function known as Tamper insurance policy that can cause problems with antivirus utility.

Tape backup with Backup Exec

if you're backing up to tape, power cycle the tape power or library and the server. This may still remedy brief problems. This re-initializes the tape equipment and resets the tape gadget's state. This can also treatment every little thing from a problem brought about with the aid of a power glitch to a couple incorrectly set parameters.

The SCSI half (controllers, cables, terminators, and so forth.) of your backup equipment can sap performance if the parameters are set incorrectly when backing as much as tape. investigate the documentation and evaluate the values there with your settings. The determine option should give you a great ordinary picture of the situation of the SCSI gadget. they could do the same factor when backing as much as disk, but on account of the random write nature of disk, it does not have the difficulty to the equal diploma tape does. Tape needs facts fed at a pleasant even pace that matches the speed of the tape unit for gold standard performance. Disk can handle intermittent slowdowns in the records price more suitable than tape can because it writes randomly.

Use the 'determine' alternative to verify the health of the SCSI device

The investigate operation is generally restricted through the pace of the SCSI gadget. assess the efficiency by way of inspecting the logs of jobs with assess operations in them. If the investigate speeds are low, determine the SCSI subsystem for feasible bottlenecks.

make certain your controller is rated for the pace of your tape power. for example, an LTO-three tape force requires a SCSI 320 community. verify that your tape drives are not connected to a SCSI RAID controller.

among the many other feasible complications with SCSI are fallacious cabling, free or bad termination and wrong SCSI BIOS settings. additionally be sure the "provoke huge negotiation" alternative is determined to "sure" when you are using a 68-pin cable connector to your tape power.

if you're backing up to disk, check the Backup to Disk (B2D) folder. The B2D folder's main use is to evade the lack of information if a tool fails, however it provides a benchmark for Backup Exec in opposition t an additional machine. You need as a minimum 2 Gb of statistics to permit for caches and such. It tends to eliminate complications with the software and the server being backed up as viable factors. look at various the B2D pace through copying at least 2 Gb of information to the B2D disk by means of dragging and shedding the file(s). evaluate that with the pace of backing up the identical information. If the pace is in regards to the same, the issue is obviously within the disk subsystem, including the controller.

See Symantec's troubleshooting tip doc for extra Backup Exec troubleshooting advice.

About this writer:Rick cook dinner focuses on writing about considerations involving records storage and facts storage management.

Symantec tops profit estimates as consumer sales upward thrust; shares surge | Real Questions and Pass4sure dumps

(Reuters) - Antivirus software maker Symantec Corp shares rose in extended alternate on Thursday after beating profit and revenue estimates in the December quarter and raising counsel on strong enterprise and purchaser corporations.

The Symantec logo is pictured on a monitor June 13, 2016. REUTERS/Thomas White/File image

The enterprise additionally announced that its Chief monetary Officer Nicholas Noviello might be stepping down to pursue different alternatives, following a slew of key govt exits on account that late last 12 months.

The cybersecurity enterprise’s amazing revenue, boosted through purchaser and business organizations, followed improved-than-anticipated results within the outdated quarter, an indication that the once-afflicted cybersecurity company is on course to good growth, in response to analysts.

“Even the decent earnings final quarter nonetheless left investors with some skepticism, but the beat this time will erase a few of these considerations,” said Dan Ives, managing director at Wedbush Securities.

Symantec raised its counsel for the present quarter, projecting March quarter adjusted income between 37 cents and forty one cents per share. Analysts had been anticipating 38 cents.

“After a difficult first half of the 12 months, we’re gaining momentum, and the company is their core center of attention,” Chief government Officer Greg Clark referred to right through the salary call.

regarding the departure of the business’s CFO, Clark referred to Noviello will remain within the function unless mid-2019 as the business searches for a replacement.

there have been diverse key govt exits at Symantec late closing 12 months, including these of President and Chief operating Officer Michael Fey, Chief marketing Officer Michael Williams and the senior vice chairman of global sales engineering and product marketing, Bradon Rogers.

Symantec spokeswoman declined to give extra explanation on Noviello’s departure.

income from Symantec’s buyer safety division rose 3 percent to $602 million. The segment accounted for nearly half the business’s total revenue. Analysts on common had anticipated $600.9 million, in response to IBES statistics from Refinitiv.

profits from Symantec’s enterprise protection division fell 2.5 % to $609 million, but beat estimates of $575.6 million, in accordance with IBES records from Refinitiv.

For the latest quarter, Symantec projected a earnings between $595 million and $605 million for its customer enterprise and a income between $595 million and $615 million for its commercial enterprise business. Analysts on general are expecting the company to submit revenues of $620.5 million and $592.70 million, respectively.

Symantec’s income fell to $sixty five million or 10 cents per share, within the quarter ended Dec. 28, compared with a income of $1.34 billion, or $2.01 per share, a year past.

On an adjusted foundation, the business earned 44 cents per share, well above estimates of 39 cents a share.

salary inched as much as $1.21 billion within the three months ended Dec. 28, above analysts’ standard estimate of $1.18 billion, in accordance with IBES statistics from Refinitiv.

Symantec shares closed up 1 % at $21.02 on Thursday. The inventory misplaced a third of its value final year, compelled by an investigation over its accounting practices and vulnerable revenue forecasts.

Reporting through Angela Moon in manhattan and Vibhuti Sharma in Bengaluru; enhancing via Peter Cooney and Diane Craft

“No Deal” Brexit might also carry functional complications for privateness and statistics insurance plan | Real Questions and Pass4sure dumps

updated: can also 25, 2018:

JD Supra is a criminal publishing carrier that connects specialists and their content with broader audiences of specialists, journalists and associations.

This privateness coverage describes how JD Supra, LLC ("JD Supra" or "we," "us," or "our") collects, makes use of and shares very own statistics accrued from guests to their web site (located at (our "website") who view most effective publicly-available content material in addition to subscribers to their services (corresponding to their e-mail digests or creator tools)(our "capabilities"). by using their site and registering for one among their services, you're agreeing to the terms of this privateness coverage.

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collection of information

Registration advice. for those who register with JD Supra for their web page and capabilities, both as an creator or as a subscriber, you might be requested to provide identifying guidance to create your JD Supra account ("Registration data"), akin to your:

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    Our site and features may additionally comprise hyperlinks to different sites. The operators of such different web sites may additionally compile assistance about you, including through cookies or different applied sciences. when you are using their website or capabilities and click on a hyperlink to a further web site, you will leave their site and this policy will no longer practice to your use of and undertaking on these other websites. They motivate you to read the legal notices posted on those sites, including their privateness policies. They aren't chargeable for the information collection and use practices of such different websites. This coverage applies entirely to the information collected in connection with your use of their web site and capabilities and does not apply to any practices carried out offline or in reference to another sites.

    information for european and Swiss Residents

    JD Supra's foremost location of business is in the united states. by subscribing to their web site, you expressly consent to your guidance being processed in the united states.

  • Our criminal basis for Processing: generally, they rely on their reliable pursuits so as to procedure your own counsel. as an instance, they count on this felony floor if they use your own counsel to manage your Registration records and administer their relationship with you; to carry their website and functions; bear in mind and increase their website and capabilities; record reader analytics to their authors; to personalize your adventure on their site and functions; and the place quintessential to give protection to or preserve their or an extra's rights or property, or to detect, steer clear of, or in any other case tackle fraud, security, security or privacy concerns. Please see Article 6(1)(f) of the E.U. regular records coverage regulation ("GDPR") furthermore, there may well be other situations the place different grounds for processing may also exist, reminiscent of where processing is due to the legal necessities (GDPR Article 6(1)(c)) or for explanations of public activity (GDPR Article 6(1)(e)). Please see the "Your Rights" element of this privateness policy instantly below for greater suggestions about how you can also request that they limit or chorus from processing your personal tips.
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  • right of entry/Portability: that you may ask to evaluation details in regards to the assistance they dangle about you and the way that advice has been used and disclosed. note that they may additionally request to assess your identification earlier than enjoyable your request. you could also request that your own suggestions is supplied to you in a prevalent digital format so for you to share it with different corporations.
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  • You can make a request to endeavor any of these rights by using emailing us at or with the aid of writing to us at:

    privateness OfficerJD Supra, LLC10 Liberty Ship approach, Suite 300Sausalito, California 94965

    you could additionally manipulate your profile and subscriptions through their privacy center under the "My Account" dashboard.

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  • Timeframe for conserving your own tips: they will keep your personal information in a kind that identifies you simplest for as lengthy as it serves the goal(s) for which it changed into in the beginning accrued as cited in this privateness policy, or because of this licensed. They may additionally proceed processing your personal tips for longer periods, however most effective for the time and to the extent such processing moderately serves the functions of archiving in the public pastime, journalism, literature and paintings, scientific or ancient research and statistical analysis, and field to the protection of this privateness coverage. for instance, when you are an writer, your personal assistance can also proceed to be published in reference to your article indefinitely. after they don't have any ongoing reputable company need to manner your personal information, they can either delete or anonymize it, or, if here's no longer viable (as an example, because your very own counsel has been stored in backup archives), then they will securely shop your personal tips and isolate it from any extra processing until deletion is viable.
  • Onward transfer to 3rd events: As stated in the "How They Share Your facts" section above, JD Supra may additionally share your assistance with third parties. When JD Supra discloses your very own suggestions to third events, we've ensured that such third events have either certified below the ecu-U.S. or Swiss privacy protect Framework and will process all personal statistics acquired from eu member states/Switzerland in reliance on the relevant privateness take care of Framework or that they've been subjected to strict contractual provisions in their contract with us to guarantee an satisfactory level of statistics insurance plan in your information.
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    You could make a request for this counsel by means of emailing us at or by using writing to us at:

    privateness OfficerJD Supra, LLC10 Liberty Ship way, Suite 300Sausalito, California 94965

    Some browsers have incorporated a don't song (DNT) feature. These points, when grew to become on, send a signal that you simply opt for that the site you're visiting now not collect and use records regarding your on-line shopping and browsing activities. As there is not yet a standard understanding on how to interpret the DNT sign, they presently do not reply to DNT alerts on their site.

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    How They Use Cookies and different tracking applied sciences

    We use cookies and other monitoring technologies to:

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    Data Protection Troubleshooting for Windows using NetBackup 5.x

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    Using Symantec NetBackup OpenStorage for disk-to-disk backup and recovery | real questions and Pass4sure dumps

    Three of the big headlines so far this year have been data growth, the economy and data deduplication in backup. The first headline, relentless data growth, is the root cause of most issues in the backup environment. In an effort to meet service-level agreements (SLAs) for data backup and recovery, more and more organizations are deploying disk in the backup process. With disk, IT organizations can better meet backup windows and recovery objectives. But as IT "modernizes" its backup infrastructure with disk-to-disk backup, new problems emerge -- specifically, the cost of managing copies stored on disk, and the feasibility of taking disk-based backup copies and making them portable for offsite and/or long-term storage.

    Deduplication addresses the first issue -- it changes the economics of disk-based backup, allowing more data to be stored in a smaller footprint. The second problem is the new pain point for end users that have adopted disk. How can they rapidly, securely, cost-effectively, and efficiently get data offsite for disaster recovery (DR) or long-term retention? Sure, most target devices with deduplication can replicate copies, but is the backup application's catalog aware of the copy? That's where Symantec Corp. Veritas NetBackup OpenStorage (OST) technology comes in.

    Symantec announced its NetBackup OpenStorage initiative a few years ago. It is designed to allow NetBackup users to utilize third-party storage solutions without the need for tape emulation.

    Available as an option for NetBackup 6.5 and higher, NetBackup OpenStorage gives NetBackup a common interface for third-party disk targets. NetBackup sees OST-enabled appliances as disk, enabling features such as intelligent capacity management, media server load balancing, reporting, and lifecycle policies. It also delivers optimized duplication. Without OST, NetBackup media servers have to manage all duplicate backup copies, which means that data must be transferred across the LAN, WAN, or SAN from the primary site secondary storage to a NetBackup media server and then to the disaster recovery site storage medium (i.e., another appliance of the same type or tape media). With OST, the OST-enabled device is doing the replication and the data path does not include NetBackup media servers. This means that only changed segments are replicated, creating savings in bandwidth and, importantly, time. NetBackup is aware of all copies and those copies follow established retention policies.

    Symantec Technology Enabled Program (STEP) partners -- such as Data Domain, EMC Corp., FalconStor Software, and Quantum Corp. -- leverage the NetBackup OpenStorage technology API to create plug-ins for their storage systems. OST allows for backup data to be stored on disk with whatever protocol the target device uses, such as a Fibre Channel or TCP/IP. Based on NetBackup policies or commands, the OST-enabled device will create, duplicate or delete copies.

    One of the more interesting byproducts of the use of the NetBackup OpenStorage interface is the performance improvement in backup. Several STEP partners with an OST-enabled solution claim 50% to100% improvement in backup performance. Richard Nosal, a server administrator for High Point Regional Health System in Greensboro, N.C., implemented the NetBackup OST option with a Data Domain DD660 and saw his pre-OST 10-hour backup window with a virtual tape library cut in half.

    Since the NetBackup catalog is aware of all copies, recovery of data from a NetBackup OpenStorage-optimized duplicate copy is the same as recovery from another duplicate. Through NetBackup's Backup-Archive-Restore GUI, the OST-optimized duplicate copy can be designated as the primary copy and then a full or granular recovery can be initiated. The potential time savings over recovery from a non-OST-optimized duplicate could be significant.

    About this author:Lauren Whitehouse is an analyst with Enterprise Strategy Group and covers data protection technologies. Lauren is a 20-plus-year veteran in the software industry, formerly serving in marketing and software development roles.

    Network Design Strategies | real questions and Pass4sure dumps

    This chapter, from Upgrading and Repairing Networks, 5e, looks at the network's logical and physical design to assist your planning when creating a new network.

    This chapter is from the book 

    Many types of networks were discussed in Chapter 1, "A Short History of Computer Networking," from ARPANET to TCP/IP. And in Chapter 2, "Overview of Network Topologies," you learned about the various topologies you can employ when designing and creating a local area network (LAN), and they also looked at some scenarios in which several networks were connected to form a wide area network (WAN). In this chapter, they will look at another aspect of creating a network: the network's logical and physical design. The physical aspects of your LAN will depend on the underlying physical transport technology—Ethernet or Token-Ring, for example, or possibly ATM, which is supported as a LAN protocol in products such as Windows 2000/XP, Windows Server 2003, and Linux. Depending on which technology you use, there will be one or more LAN topologies from which to choose.

    Before you can begin to design a physical network, however, you first must determine your needs. What services must you provide to your user community? What are the resources you'll need? If you have to compromise, what will it take to satisfy the most users or to provide the more important services? You then will have to take into account network protocols, applications, network speed, and, most important, network security issues; each of these figures into a network's logical design. Another important factor your management will probably force you to consider is cost—you can't forget the budget. These factors make up the logical design for your network. You first should decide what you need and what it will take to provide for those needs.

    If you are creating a new network and purchasing new applications, you will probably spend most of your time considering the licensing and other financial costs (training users, network personnel, and so on). If you are upgrading older applications, several other factors come into consideration. Many applications that were coded using COBOL, BASIC, FORTRAN, and other languages that helped jumpstart the computer age may have built-in network functionality based on older proprietary network protocols. If this is the case with your network, you have to consider several things. What will it cost to update thousands of lines of code (or more) to more modern versions of the same programming language? What will it cost to upgrade these programs to newer object-oriented languages? To save money, can you upgrade part of your network and use gateway hardware/software to connect to older network components?

    Because of the costs associated with coding applications that were created many years ago, and the expenses that will be required to update them to modern programming languages, you may be forced to maintain legacy applications for a few years while replacement applications are designed and created. You may find a packaged application that can be used to replace older programs. This problem will apply mostly to proprietary computer architectures, instead of Windows or Unix platforms. If you can simply make minor changes and compile the source code so that it will run on a newer operating system, your costs will be much less than if you have to re-create the applications your users need from scratch. Another cost associated with upgrading to new programs is training users and help-desk personnel.

    When you plan a logical network design, you can start from one of two places. You can design and install a new network from scratch, or you can upgrade an existing network. Either way, you should gather information about several important factors before you begin the logical design. For example, depending on the services that will be provided to clients, you might need to analyze the possible traffic patterns that might result from your plan. Locate potential bottlenecks and, where possible, alleviate them by providing multiple paths to resources or by putting up servers that provide replicas of important data so that load balancing can be provided. The following are other factors to consider:

  • Who are the clients? What are their actual needs? How have you determined these needs—from user complaints or from help-desk statistics? Is this data reliable?
  • What kinds of services will you provide on the network? Are they limited in scope? Will any involve configuring a firewall between LANs? And if so, that still doesn't account for configuring a firewall to enable access to the Internet.
  • Will you need to allow an Internet connection for just your internal network's users, or will use you need to allow outside vendors access to your network? One example that comes to mind is the Internet Printing Protocol (see Chapter 24, "Overview of the TCP/IP Protocol Suite"). What will it cost to evaluate what kind of services user groups need to access from the Internet? Will you need to allow all users to use email—both within the internal network and through the firewall on the Internet? The same goes for what sites users will be allowed to access using a network browser and other network applications. Will you have users who work from home and require dial-in or VPN access through the Internet?
  • Can your users tolerate a little downtime now and then due to network problems, or is it necessary to provide a high-availability network? Will you need clustered servers to provide for a high degree of uptime, or do your users' applications not suffer from a temporary loss of the use of a server? To provide for maximum uptime, can you afford to build redundancy into your network? For example, Chapter 2 discusses redundant topologies that can be used to prevent a single point of failure from making the network (and its resources) unavailable. Chapter 11, "Network Attached Storage and Storage Area Networks," describes methods you can use to mirror data at geographically distant locations.
  • In an existing network, will you keep the current protocol or upgrade to a different protocol standard? If you create a network from scratch, what factors should affect your network protocol decision? Ethernet is the most popular LAN technology in the world today. TCP/IP is the most popular protocol suite that runs on Ethernet. Yet there are cases in which other technologies have their niches. Consider the implications (such as support costs and security) to maintain older, proprietary protocols.
  • Who Are Your Clients?

    This seems like a very simple question. However, I'm not saying, "What are your clients' names and how well do you know their children?" I am referring instead to your knowledge of the job descriptions for the users on the network. You need to assess work patterns for various departments so that you can appropriately place servers, high-bandwidth links, and other such things in the appropriate physical location of the network. If most of the network traffic you expect to see will come from the engineering department, you'll need to provide that department with a large data pipe. In Chapter 4, "Upgrading Strategies and Project Management," you'll find more information about surveying the user community to come up with a plan that places resources where they are needed.

    What Kinds of Services or Applications Will the Network Offer?

    Of course, everyone knows that the most important function of a network today is to support multiuser gaming. Seriously, though, you need to make a list of the kinds of applications currently in use, as well as a list of those requested by users. Each application should have a written risk assessment document that points out potential security problems, if any. Typical network applications today include FTP, telnet, and, of course, browsing the Web. There are "secure" versions of these applications and there are versions that leave a door wide open into your network. Whatever list of applications you chose to support over the network, keep in mind two things:

  • Is the application safe? Most applications today come in secure versions or can be used with a proxy server to help minimize the possibility of abuse. Yet, as they all have seen, even the largest corporations are targets at times, and those companies have the staff that should be able to prevent these things from happening. Because proxy servers are an important component of firewalls, this subject is covered in greater detail in Chapter 45. If you want a secure network, this is highly recommended reading!
  • Does one application overlap another? Every user has his or her favorite application. Some people like one word processor, whereas others prefer a different one. But when dealing with applications or application suites (such as Microsoft Office), you'll find it better to make a decision and stick with a single product if it can satisfy the needs of your users. They might not like it, and training might be necessary, but supporting multiple applications that do the same thing wastes money and leads to confusion.
  • A commonly overlooked method for getting data files out of a network and onto the Internet is to simply send the files as an attachment to an email. So if you think you've blocked file transfers by disabling FTP access through the firewall, this example should show that you really do need to do a thorough evaluation of any new application or service you will allow on the network. New applications should be justified with facts that show why they are needed. If an existing application can be used to accomplish the same goal, why do you need another application? Should you retire the older application and use a newer one? Pay attention to the details. And don't forget to test new applications to ensure that they perform as expected. The same goes for older applications—will they work on the new or upgraded network?

    Lastly, do you monitor network usage? Do you want to permit users to spend their days browsing the Net, or checking personal email while at work? Many companies have policies that apply to using the telephone for personal business. Do you overlook this situation when giving users email capability? Are you preventing access to sites that are obviously not business-related?

    What Degree of Reliability Do I Require for Each Network Link?

    Just how much downtime is acceptable? For most users, the answer would be zero. Important components of your network, such as file servers, should have fault tolerance built in from the bottom up. In large servers, you'll find dual-redundant power supplies (each connected to a separate UPS), and disk arrays set up using RAID techniques to provide for data integrity in the event that a disk goes south. If a link between two offices needs to be up 100% of the time, you should plan for multiple links between the two sites to provide a backup capability. In this case, you also can justify the cost of the extra link by using load balancing so that network response time is improved. And, if you are using multiple links to remote sites, it's always a good idea to have more than a single path to the site. At one site this author worked at, there were redundant power lines bringing electricity into the site—side-by-side. If a tree falls, will it bring down one or both of those power lines?

    Another technology that can be used to provide an extra layer of redundancy, as well as high-speed access to storage devices, is the Storage Area Network (SAN). A SAN is a network that is separate from the LAN and contains only storage devices and servers that need to access those devices. Because the network bandwidth is not shared with LAN users, multiple servers can access the same storage. If one server fails, other servers can be configured to provide redundant access to the data. Also, the same RAID and other redundancy techniques used for storage devices that are directly attached to a server (such as the SCSI hardware and protocols) can be used on a SAN.


    The terms RAID and UPS are important in today's networks, as is the concept of load balancing and dual-redundant power supplies in large networks. You can find out more about RAID (Redundant Array Of Independent Disks) and UPSs (uninterruptible power supplies) by reading Chapter 5, "Protecting the Network: Preventative Maintenance Techniques." For more information about SANs, see Chapter 11.

    The old saying "If it ain't broke, don't fix it" doesn't apply to networks. You should always be proactively looking for potential single points of failure and doing something to fix them. By building redundancy into the network design at the start, you'll save yourself a lot of grief in the future.

    Chapter 5 can give you more suggestions about using clustering, backups, uninterruptible power supplies, and other techniques that can keep the network up and running.

    Choosing a LAN Protocol

    Today the de facto protocol of choice has to be TCP/IP. However, other protocols have their place in some vertical markets. In this book, they talk about NetWare. NetWare has been around so long that you might find you have no choice when designing an upgrade but to keep using IPX/SPX, depending on the applications your network uses. However, even NetWare has moved toward using TCP/IP as the underlying protocol. This is basically the case for version 5.x and 6.x of NetWare. Older NetWare networks should upgrade, if possible, to one of these newer versions. If you will be connecting the network to the Internet, TCP/IP will be a necessity. Even if you don't expect to have an Internet connection, you'll find that choosing TCP/IP is a more practical choice today because most applications work with it and there is a large market of trained professionals who can be hired to manage a network built on TCP/IP. NetWare 6.x provides backward compatibility with IPX/SPX for the most part, but newer features such as the iPrint—which uses the Internet Printing Protocol—require TCP/IP.

    In addition to transport protocols such as TCP/IP and IPX/SPX, you must consider application protocols that can be used on the network. For example, to simplify administering configuration information for a large number of computers, you might want to use the Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP), which is discussed in Chapter 28, "BOOTP and Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP)." If you want to provide a central name resolution service, you might choose the Domain Name Service (DNS), which is covered in Chapter 29, "Network Name Resolution." If you are going to operate a Windows network that has pre–Windows 2000/XP clients, you might need to use the Windows Internet Naming Service (WINS) for backward compatibility.

    So when thinking about a network protocol, remember that it's not just one protocol you need to worry about. After you've decided which protocols are necessary, research the security implications of each.

    It's Virtually Universal: TCP/IP

    For all practical purposes, the standard LAN protocol today is TCP/IP. This is partly due to the rapid growth of the Internet, and the necessity of most businesses of having a Web presence, as well as the large number of vendors that have adopted this protocol suite. If your LAN is still using an older proprietary network protocol, you should seriously consider what it would take to upgrade to TCP/IP. Currently, TCP/IP version 4 is the most widely used protocol. In the future you can expect that the next version (IPv6) will start to find its way from the core of the Internet out to the edge, where your network resides. While technologies such as Network Address Translation (NAT) are widely employed to remedy the problem associated with the limited address space provided by IPv4, IPv6 will enable a much larger address space. Combine that with Network Address Translation, and the long-term bets are going to be on IPv6, or possibly some of the features that are part of IPv6. In addition to giving you a larger address space, IPv6 includes other important features. Those that will affect your network the most are security mechanisms, which will only become more important as Internet commerce continues to grow.


    For a detailed introduction to TCP/IP, see Chapter 24, "Overview of the TCP/IP Protocol Suite"; Chapter 25, "Basic TCP/IP Services and Applications"; and Chapter 27, "Troubleshooting Tools for TCP/IP Networks."

    There is one very important reason you should consider TCP/IP as a LAN protocol: There are more trained professionals knowledgeable in TCP/IP than any other LAN protocol at this time. It is interesting to note that in Windows NT 3.51, the default network protocol was Microsoft's implementation of IPX/SPX (NWLink). In Windows NT 4.0 (and successive operating systems, from Windows 2000, XP, and Server 2003), the default network protocol is TCP/IP.

    If your network is composed of several operating systems, from Windows to NetWare to Unix and Linux, then the bottom line is that TCP/IP is the lowest common denominator that will allow the easiest connectivity and interaction between all of these. Even Microsoft's now-legacy NetBIOS/NetBEUI protocols have been adapted to run over TCP/IP.

    Novell's NetWare Version 6.5

    NetWare was perhaps the first attempt at seriously providing a LAN protocol that was easy to use. The basic file and print services offered by early versions of NetWare were much better than other solutions available at that time. After it became established in the business community, NetWare became the network solution of choice in many business environments that used the PC. Microsoft countered this success with its LANManager products, which were also marketed by other vendors in their own way, such as the Pathworks solution from Digital Equipment Corporation.

    Today NetWare is a totally revamped solution to LAN connectivity. It provides many new features that are addressed to specifically make use of the Internet, and allow mobile users to connect to their home networks, as well as to enable NetWare users to make connections to outside networks. For example, the iPrint feature enables NetWare users to print to a printer on a remote network. For example, instead of sending a catalog that may be out of date in a month or so, you can use iPrint to periodically send specific information relevant to each customer, by printing it directly to the customer's printer.

    And NetWare's iFolder allows mobile users to synchronize data stored on remote computers (such as a laptop computer) with the data stored on the company's network. Microsoft and other vendors offer similar features. However, the point to remember is that if you already are a NetWare user, you don't have to throw out your existing investment and move to a Microsoft network, or even a Unix/Linux environment. NetWare has changed as the market has changed, and you might find it less expensive to upgrade to NetWare 6.5 than to migrate to another platform. The bottom line involves not just the cost of migrating to another operating system, but the costs involved with retraining your network administrative personnel in new technology.

    Because NetWare 6.5 is so tightly integrated with the IP protocol, and also offers backward compatibility with IPX/SPX, admins for existing NetWare networks should consider upgrading to NetWare 6.5 as well as considering other options.

    If you want to move to Linux, Novell makes it easy by incorporating an enhanced version of NetWare 6.5 and SuSE Linux into its Novell Open Enterprise Server. Open Enterprise Server supports both Linux and NetWare-specific software and features, enabling you to move to Linux gradually.

    Other LAN/WAN Protocols

    The distinction between LAN and WAN (wide area networking) protocols is beginning to blur. Ethernet was once considered to be a LAN protocol. As time has passed, other technologies, such as Token-Ring, have become minor players in the LAN world. Yet the opposite is true of Ethernet. It has grown from a modest specification endorsed by Intel, DEC, and other vendors, such that it now can be considered a WAN protocol. The capabilities introduced by current LAN technologies are beginning to erode the differences between a LAN and a MAN (metropolitan area network). When the fourth edition of this book was published, Gigabit Ethernet was starting to fall into the inexpensive range of network topologies. That trend has continued and now 10Gigabit Ethernet (10GbE) is frequently being used in enterprise data centers. Today you may be using 100BASE-T for connecting client computers to the network, and Gigabit Ethernet to connect network segments via the network backbone. In some cases your network might even be exclusively based on 10GbE.

    What does this mean to a network administrator today? With 10Gigabit Ethernet, you can use TCP/IP not only to create a local area network backbone, but to extend that reach to a metropolitan area network. And because TCP/IP is so intertwined with Ethernet, you can achieve an end-to-end MAN link that uses TCP/IP over faster Ethernet connections. Instead of employing more expensive solutions, such as SONET, you can now connect branch offices in the same geographical area using just TCP/IP.

    You may not have to worry about installing expensive equipment used by SONET and other typical MAN protocols. Still, for the long haul—for example, between different cities—other protocols such as ATM and Frame Relay will come into play.


    For more information about SONET, ATM, and Frame Relay, see Chapter 15, "Dedicated Connections."

    Samsung Series 5 Chromebook 550 review: Is less more? | real questions and Pass4sure dumps

    Chrome OS is an operating system designed to run one app: the web browser. As such, there is virtually nothing you can do on a laptop running Chrome OS that you can’t also do on a Windows, Mac, or Linux laptop with the Google Chrome web browser installed.

    But that’s beside the point. The point of a Chromebook like the Samsung Series 5 Chromebook 550 is that for many people the web browser is the single most important app on any computer. So why waste system resources supporting anything but the browser?

    The Samsung Series 5 Chromebook 550 boots in less than 10 seconds and resumes from sleep nearly instantly. The keyboard features keys designed specifically for web browser functions. Why press F5 to refresh a web page when you can just hit the refresh key?

    Samsung’s second Chromebook features a faster processor, more memory, and generally faster performance than the original Series 5 Chromebook I reviewed in 2011. Chrome OS has also changed quite a bit in the past year. Google has added a taskbar and desktop and made it possible to view multiple browser windows side by side.

    I’m still not sure Chromebooks are ready for prime time — but the Samsung Series 5 Chromebook 550 is certainly a lot more ready for early adopters of the cloud computing paradigm than the Samsung and Acer Chromebooks released in 2011. It’s faster, doesn’t freeze or crash as often, and feels more like a full-fledged laptop.

    It also helps that there are more web apps offering desktop app-like functionality every day.

    You can’t run Adobe Photoshop or Microsoft office on a Chromebook. But you can run web apps such as Aviary or Google Docs instead. There are a growing number of web apps that work like desktop apps — but since they’re hosted online you’ll never need to install an update. And your files and documents are stored online, so you can access them from any computer.

    A Chromebook is also less vulnerable to malicious attacks than a Windows computer — because you never download and install any software on a Chromebook at all (unless you count operating system updates downloaded directly from Google).

    There are a lot of things to like about a Chromebook like the Samsung Series 5 Chromebook 550. And if you spend most of your time on a computer using a web browser, it might be worth taking a leap.

    But Chromebooks aren’t ready for everyone just yet. They’re little more than paperweights when you don’t have an internet connection handy. Printing is more complicated on a Chromebook than on a more traditional laptop. And with a starting price of $450, it may be hard to justify spending money on a computer that does less than a Windows, Mac, or Linux laptop… even if in this case, less is supposed to be a feature, rather than a bug.

    Google and Samsung loaned me a Chromebook 550 to use for a few weeks while preparing this review.

    A WiFi-only version of the Chromebook is available for $450, while a 3G model which comes with 100MB of free data from Verizon Wireless costs $550.


    The first time you hit the power button on the Chromebook a screen will appear asking you to connect a wireless network and enter your Google user name and password, or create a new account if you don’t already have one.

    Even the first boot only takes a few seconds and you can start using the Chromebook right away after logging in.

    If you’ve used the Chrome web browser on a Windows, Mac, Linux, or Android device, logging in is all it takes to import your history, bookmarks, extensions, apps, and other settings. The first sync can take a few minutes, but you can go ahead and start surfing the web even before it’s finished.

    When Chrome OS initially launched, there was nothing to see in the operating system except the web browser. It took up the full screen and the only difference between Chrome OS and the Chrome browser on other platforms was the inclusion of clock, wireless, and battery indicators in one corner.

    Now those indicators have been moved to a taskbar at the bottom of the screen. It fades away when you’re not using it, but you can bring it up just by scrolling your mouse cursor to the bottom edge of the display.

    You can tap the indicators to bring up sliders for screen brightness and volume, a wireless connection manager, and other tools.

    The taskbar also shows a list of currently open browser windows, with favicons for each window letting you know which page is open in that window.

    There’s also an Applications icon you can press to bring up a full list of available apps. It looks a lot like the app drawer in Android or an iOS home screen, with apps arranged along a grid.

    You can tap any icon to launch an app, or right-click to pin an app to the launcher or access other advanced options.

    On the left side of the taskbar there’s a space for you to a space for your pinned apps in the launcher area.

    While the taskbar is one of the biggest changes Google made to Chrome OS this year, the company has also made a small but very important change: You don’t have to run the web browser as a full screen app anymore. You can open two or more browser windows and view them side by side, cascade them, or arrange them any way you like.

    When I talk about apps, what I really mean are web pages. But these are web pages which you’ve saved to your account for easy access. Some of these apps also take advantage of special features in the web browser such as the ability to download information for offline access.

    For instance, you can sync your device with Google Calendar so that you can view your calendar even when you don’t have an active internet connection.

    But one of the biggest challenges presented by Chrome OS is the fact that most web apps aren’t available when you can’t access the web — and even those that are may not work properly if you haven’t synchronized your data first. A Chromebook is clearly designed to be used first and foremost with an internet connection, and will be of limited use in a subway, on an airplane, or in another environment where you may not have reliable internet access.

    That said, I was surprised at just how much I was able to accomplish while using the Series 5 Chromebook 550. A few years ago I might have found it difficult to get any work done on a computer without Irfanview, GIMP, Microsoft Office or LibreOffice, and other tools I use for work. Today there are web apps that meet most of my needs — and Chrome OS even has a very basic image editor built in (as does the WordPress web app, so between the two of them I can crop and resize pictures without even relying on a third party web app).

    If I still worked as a radio producer, a Chromebook might not be a great laptop replacement, since editing audio would be a bit of a headache. And I’m not sure I’d want to use a Chromebook to upload 1GB videos to YouTube when it would be faster and more efficient to use a Windows PC to transcode them to 100MB MP4 files first.

    But during the few weeks that I’ve had a Chromebook around, I’ve found myself often grabbing it when I need to write a blog post, do some quick web browsing, or even watch some online video — because it’s the fastest, most responsive device in the house at the moment which has a decent keyboard.

    It turns on almost as quickly as an Android tablet, but I can type about 100 words per minute on a Chromebook, while I’d be lucky to tap out 20 words in a minute on a tablet or phone with an on-screen keyboard.


    Samsung’s $450 Chromebook has an all-plastic case with a metallic gray finish. The lid and palm rest area look like they’re covered in brushed aluminum, but that’s just a textured finish on the plastic.

    That’s not necessarily a bad thing. The plastic case helps keep the price down, and the laptop is still reasonably thin, light, and attractive — although there’s a bit of flex in the keyboard area if you’re the sort of person that likes to hammer down hard on your keys.

    The laptop measures 11.5″ x 8.5″ x 0.83″ and weighs just over 3 pounds. That makes it a hair thicker than a typical ultrabook, but if you placed the Series 5 Chromebook 550 next to an ultrabook you’d be forgiven for having a hard time telling the two apart.

    Like an ultrabook the Chromebook has a sealed bottom panel — there’s no easy way to upgrade the  memory or storage, or even replace the 51Whr battery.

    Fortunately the laptop gets reasonably good battery life, with between 6 and 7 hours of run time. And unlike the original Samsung Series 5 Chromebook which had just 2GB of RAM, the new model has 4GB which seems to be more than enough for everyday computing in Chrome OS.

    The laptop has just 16GB of storage thanks to a relatively small solid state disk — but that’s because you don’t need disk space to install files and Google wants you to use web storage for your documents, music, and other files.

    Samsung’s new Chromebook is powered by a 1.3 GHz Intel Celeron 867 dual core processor with Intel HD 3000 graphics. It’s not exactly a speed demon, but it’s fast enough for web browsing — and offers a huge performance boost over the Intel Atom N570 chip that was used in last year’s model.

    The laptop has a 12.1 inch, 1280 x 800 pixel display matte display. Samsung is one of the only PC makers that seems to make laptops with matte displays, and while they might not look as good on the store shelf (because they’re less shiny), they look a lot better outdoors or near a bright window (because they’re less shiny).

    Unfortunately the viewing angles leave a lot to be desired. Colors wash out and the screen gets hard to see if you tilt back the screen more than a few degrees. Maybe that’s why the laptop lid doesn’t open very wide at all.

    Viewing angles are much better from the side, which means you can probably watch a video with the person sitting in the seat next to you — as long as they’re about the same height. If their eyes are much higher or lower than yours, the screen will be practically invisible.

    On the left side of the Chromebook you’ll find a power jack, a full-sized Ethernet port (with a little plastic hinge that drops down to accommodate an Ethernet adapter, a DisplayPort, USB 2.0 port, and headset jack.

    The DisplayPort is the only video output, so if you want to connect an external monitor you’ll need to either make sure it supports this relatively new standard or get an adapter.

    On the right you’ll find a second USB 2.0 port and an SD card reader which is covered by a little plastic door. Instead of popping open the door though, all you have to do to use a flash card is push it right into the door, which slides inward to make room for the SD card.

    There are stereo speakers and several vents on the bottom of the laptop. The fans can get a bit loud at times, especially when you’re watching videos or performing other tasks that tax the CPU.

    The speakers are reasonably loud and clear — but they’re laptop speakers. If you really want decent sound, plug in some headphones.

    Around the back of the laptop you’ll find a SIM card slot on 3G capable models.

    Samsung has been making 11 and 12 inch laptops for a while, so the company knows how to make a decent keyboard. The Series 5 Chromebook 550 has an island-style keyboard with flat black keys floating in a sea of grey plastic, with a little space between each key. I found typing to be reasonably comfortable and didn’t have any problems typing at full speed.

    Something that sets a Chromebook apart from a typical laptop though, is the browser-specific keys. There’s no row of F keys above the row of number keys, for instance. Instead you have single-function keys such as forward, back, refresh, and full screen. There are also keys for adjusting the volume and screen brightness in this row.

    On the left side of the keyboard you’ll also find a dedicated search key. This laptop does run an operating system designed by a search engine company, after all.

    Unfortunately there are a few keys that aren’t on the keyboard which you might miss. There are no Page Up, Page Down, Home, End, or Del keys.

    There are keyboard shortcuts for each of those functions. But they require far more keystrokes than seem absolutely necessary for keys that are so commonly used when surfing the web or writing documents or email messages.

    Here are a few of those shortcuts:

  • PgUp: Alt+Up arrow
  • PgDn: Alt+Down arrow
  • Home: Ctrl+Alt+Left arrow
  • End: Ctrl+Alt+Right arrow
  • Del: Alt+Backspace
  • You can also grab a screenshot by pressing Ctrl+the Windows key in the top row which normally lets you switch between browser windows.

    Chromebook Forum has a much more detailed list of keyboard shortcuts — many of which don’t seem to be documented by Google or Samsung.

    Below the keyboard is a large touchpad without any physical left or right buttons. You can use the entire surface to control a mouse cursor, and tap gently on the touchpad to click… sometimes. From time to time, I had to click repeatedly before anything would happen, and some actions only seem to work if you actually press down on the touchpad until you hear an audible click.

    You can scroll up and down by placing two fingers on the touch surface and moving up or down. Two-finger side-to-side scrolling also works.

    To emulate a right-click, you use two fingers to tap the touchpad. This lets you bring up context menus to open links in new tabs, pin apps to your launcher, or perform other actions.

    For the most part two-finger clicking works reasonably well, but sometimes if both of your fingers don’t hit the touchpad at exactly the same time, you may end up triggering a left click instead of a right-click — and that can mean open a link in the current browser tab instead of a new tab, which can be kind of annoying.

    While it took a little while to get used to the buttonless touchpad, I have to say that now every time I pick up a tablet with dedicated left and right buttons, I find myself wanting to place two fingers on the surface to right-click. It’s not a perfect system, but it makes it much easier to use the touchpad with one hand without moving your fingers as far.

    The Chromebook instantly recognized a USB mouse when I plugged one in, and had no problem detecting left and right click actions from the mouse.

    What a Chromebook can do

    Chrome OS may be little more than a web browser, but there are a few key advantages to the way Google’s operating system works.

    First, operating system updates are incredibly simple. When an update is available, Chrome OS will automatically download it in the background when you’re not paying attention. Eventually you’ll notice a little up arrow in the settings panel indicating that the update is ready.

    The next time you shut down the laptop and turn it back on again, you’ll be running the latest version of Chrome OS. It doesn’t take significantly longer to reboot after an update than it does to perform a normal reboot. The one time I noticed an update install on my review unit, the whole process took less than 20 seconds.

    The second big advantage is a case where less is more: because there’s little local storage and almost every app you’ll ever run on Chrome OS has a web component, you don’t have to worry about backing up your device.

    It’s always backed up by default — because your apps, history, settings, and preferences are all synchronized with Google’s servers. If you lose your Chromebook you can pick up exactly where you left off by grabbing another Chromebook — or by simply logging into a Chrome web browser on a Windows, Mac, or Linux computer.

    The operating system is also generally safer from malware. Since you’re not actually installing anything to the local device even when you add an app to the launcher, it’s tough for a malicious hacker to do anything really dangerous.

    Of course, some folks would call an operating system that stores most of your data on someone else’s server less secure since you have no control over it. Personally I think Google engineers are probably better prepared to protect my files and information than I am, but they also clearly represent a bigger target.

    If you’d rather handle your own data backups and other security measures yourself, Chrome OS probably isn’t for you.

    On the other hand, if you spend most of your time on a computer in a web browser, or if you’re looking for a device with the instant-on qualities of an iPad or Android tablet, but a standard keyboard, a Chromebook might be all you need.

    Since the Samsung Series 5 Chromebook 550 doesn’t run Windows there are many apps it cannot run. But you’d be surprised just how many web-based alternatives exist.

    Here are a few web of the web apps I use the most, and the desktop apps they replace:

    Aviary also has a web app called Myna that you can use to edit audio — with my background as a radio producer I find this intriguing, but I find the idea of uploading uncompressed audio, mixing it, and then downloading it to be a little odd.

    And that’s not counting all the apps for web-based service that I use regularly including Gmail, Google Reader, Netflix, Facebook, and YouTube.

    That’s not to say that Chrome OS doesn’t include any native apps. There’s a simple file manager which you can use to find and open files on your device or cut, copy, rename, or delete files.

    There’s no way to access the root file system. Basically all you get is a Downloads folder, unless you insert an SD card or USB flash drive or hard drive. Then a second drive opens up in the panel on the left, letting you switch between your Downloads folder and external storage.

    Oddly there’s no search function in the file manager, which seems funny for an operating system designed by the makers of the world’s most popular search engine.

    Chrome OS also includes a basic media player that lets you watch movies and listen to music without an internet connection, a photo viewer and simple image editor, and a document viewer.

    When the Chromebook review unit arrived at my door a few weeks ago, it came with an SD card filled with files to try out. I was amused to discover that I couldn’t open the included Microosft Word, Excel, or PowerPoint documents without an error message. But a few days ago Google pushed out a Chrome OS update and now those documents open without a problem, whether the computer is connected to the internet or not.

    Since Chrome OS is basically just a web browser, documents open in a browser window. Videos play in a full screen browser window. And a music player pops up in a small browser window that you can minimize when you want to play audio files.

    The image editor built into the operating system is pretty basic, offering you the ability to crop a picture, adjust brightness, or rotate an image. If you need any more advanced features you’ll have to use a web-based editor such as Aviary.

    I wouldn’t be surprised to see Google add more functionality to the image editor in the future. The company did buy Aviary competitor Picnik a few years ago. Even though Google shut down Picnik as a standalone service this year, the company clearly has the expertise to build a decent image editing service using nothing but web standards.

    Chrome OS lets you print web pages or other content in two ways. The simplest is to print a page as a PDF. You can then save this for later or copy it to a flash drive or email it to yourself to print on another PC.

    Or you can use Google Cloud Print. If you have a supported printer connected to the internet, you can send print jobs directly to that printer from the Chrome web browser. If you don’t have a shared printer you can install a Cloud Print app on your PC to turn a printer connected to that computer into a printer that you can use with Chrome OS or Android.

    But to be honest, it’s kind of a headache, and I suspect if you’re seriously considering buying a laptop that doesn’t run native desktop apps, you might already be the sort of person that doesn’t use a printer very often anyway.

    If you absolutely need to run Windows apps on a Chromebook, Google offers a Chrome Remote Desktop app that lets you remote control any Mac, Linux, or Windows computer that has the Chrome browser installed.

    Of course, that only works if you’re using your Chromebook while your PC is already running… so I kind of have to wonder why you don’t just walk over to your PC. But I suppose it could come in handy if you need to login to your work network to access some files on a PC that you leave running 24/7 for some environmentally unsound reason.

    Although Chrome OS is based on a Linux kernel, at least one important website that doesn’t normally play well with Linux works perfectly with Chrome OS. You can stream videos from Netflix even though the website usually only works on computers that can run Microsoft’s Silverlight plugin.

    What Chrome OS can’t do

    OK, so it turns out an operating system built around a web browser can do a lot. But there are some things that it can’t do that could be a little disconcerting for long-time Windows, Mac, or Linux users.

    The most important difference between Chrome OS and other operating systems is that a Chromebook becomes about 2000 percent less useful when you disconnect from the internet.

    Chrome OS offline

    Chrome OS offline

    Yes, you can still view photos, watch movies, or listen to music stored locally — but Chromebooks only have 16GB of storage for local files. You won’t be carrying around your entire video collection on this laptop (unless you have a nice collection of very large SD cards).

    Chromebooks are clearly meant to be used with active internet connections. Google and third party developers are taking steps to make them more useful without internet access by building offline capabilities into a number of apps.

    You can find a few hundred apps with offline features in the Offline Apps collection in the Chrome Web Store. But most web apps still don’t work offline — and many of those that do are useless unless you have the foresight to sync or cache your data before disconnecting from the internet.

    For example, Google Calendar works offline — but only if you sync your calendar before going offline. If you haven’t opened Google Calendar recently or haven’t enabled offline access, opening it while you’re on an airplane will either result in a blank screen or an out-of-date calendar.

    This should go without saying, but another thing you can’t do with a Chromebooks is run apps that aren’t available on the web.

    Want to run Adobe Photoshop, Microsoft Office, Stata, Final Cut Pro, Diablo III, or Portal 2? Tough. There are plenty of online apps that offer similar features — Microsoft even has a web-based version of Office. But if you want to run those apps specifically, you’re out of luck.

    There’s also no support for Microsoft Silverlight, an Adobe Flash alternative. I don’t see that as a big problem because the only website I’ve ever regularly used that requires Silverlight is Netflix… and that works with Chrome OS anyway. But if you need Silverlight, a Chromebook isn’t going to cut it.

    As mentioned above, you can connect a Chromebook wirelessly to a printer using Google Cloud Print, but unless you have a supported printer, it’s a bit of a headache to set up.

    Likewise, you can connect an external display. But for some reason Samsung included a DisplayPort jack instead of a VGA, HDMI, or DVI port. If your monitor doesn’t use DisplayPort (and most older monitors don’t), you’re going to need an adapter.


    Normally this would be the section where I would run a series of benchmarks to test CPU and graphics performance. But my usual set of tests are designed for Windows computers, not Chrome OS.

    Fortunately there are a few browser-based benchmarks which show how the Chromebook compares to other devices in terms of JavaScript and HTML5 performance. Of course, the don’t tell the whole story, but they do give us a bit of a basis for comparison.

    The SunSpider benchmark is designed to test JavaScript performance, while Peacekeeper is a test that looks at performance for a number of different HTML5 features including video playback, 2D and 3D gaming, and multitasking.

    I ran each test on three different devices: The Series 5 Chromebook 550 with an Intel Celeron 867 CPU, an HP Pavilion dm1 notebook with an AMD E2-1800 Brazos 2.0 processor, and a Dell Inspiron 537S desktop with an Intel Core 2 Duo E7400 processor — the most powerful PC in my house at the moment.

    As you might expect, the Chromebook was outclassed in the SunSpider test… but it wasn’t that far behind the others. Most of the Android tablets I’ve tested, for instance, have scores of 2000 or higher — and lower scores are better in this test.

    Things got even more interesting with the Peacekeeper benchmark — where the Chromebook came out well ahead of the HP Pavilion… but still behind the 3-year old Dell desktop.

    OK, but these benchmarks test performance under artificial conditions. What’s it like to use a Chromebook on a day to day basis?

    Pretty good.

    Last year’s model may have had a netbook processor, but it managed to boot, resume from sleep, and generally run faster than a typical netbook due to its streamlined operating system.

    But the Intel Atom N570 processor and 2GB of RAM started to show their limitations when you tried to stream HD videos over the internet or open more than 5 or 6 browser tabs at a time.

    Those problems have disappeared with Samsung’s second Chromebook. I had no problems streaming 1080p HD video from YouTube, HD video from Netflix, or full-screen video from Hulu. And the laptop never slowed down no matter how many browser tabs I had open at once — although to be fair, I don’t think I ever really tried more than a dozen or so.

    I think Google, Acer, and Samsung were on the right track when they released the first Chromebooks with Intel Atom powers… but they missed the mark a bit. You don’t need a blazing fast CPU or an enormous amount of RAM to run Chrome OS effectively.

    But you do need something a bit faster than a netbook, and the Chromebook 550 with its Celeron 550 processor and 4GB of RAM delivers.

    VerdictThe Samsung Series 5 Chromebook 550 isn’t for everyone. For $450 or more you can buy a decent Windows laptop, install the Chrome web browser, and do almost everything that you can do with a Chromebook.

    But you can do many of those things better with a Chromebook if the web browser is your most important app. The Chromebook 550 boots more quickly than a typical laptop, resumes from sleep nearly instantly, and generally offers the kind of responsiveness you’d expect from a good Apple or Android tablet, not a notebook.

    You also never have to worry about updating your operating system, apps, or virus protection software.

    Chromebooks might be a good solution for business or enterprise settings where IT managers can hand out a series of notebooks configured to only run web apps, allowing users to login to corporate websites to run specific apps for email, document collaboration, payroll management, or other functions.

    Since Chromebooks keep data backed up online, if you lose or breaks a laptop, the IT department can issue a new one and get you back up and running as soon as you enter your user ID and password.

    As a consumer product, it would be easier to recommend a computer like a Chromebook which does less than a typical laptop if it cost less. But you can buy an HP Pavilion dm1 Windows 7 notebook with similar features for less money.

    But in some ways, less is more, and if you’re sold on the web app-driven future, a Chromebook could make a decent substitute for (or compliment to) a traditional laptop.

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