Precision Developer Editions 7530/7730 now online — Welcome the power pair

July 2, 2018

Not long ago I introduced the next gen of Project Sputnik’s Linux-based Dell Precision Mobile workstations: the 3530, 5530, 7530 and the 7730.  At that time the 3530 was available for purchase.

Today I’m happy to announce that the uber-powerful 7530 and 7730 are now live on dell.com

Note: to get to the Ubuntu option, hit “more” in the Operating System section.

7730 and 7530 with screenfill

These new thinner, lighter, premium-built Precision mobile workstations come preloaded with Ubuntu and have been RHEL certified.  The 7530 and 7730 feature the latest Intel Core and Xeon processors, blazing-fast memory and professional graphics.

Of particular note is the increased core count and memory.  In fact the maximum memory has doubled to 128GB which helps with cloud developer local workloads.  In the case of the 7730, it supports up to 8TB of PCIe NVME storage, the most PCIe storage on the market today.  The 7730 is also the first AI/ML ready mobile workstation available.

A double click on the specs

Although the following information was in the previous blog, I wanted to include it here so that you had all the info in one place.

Dell Precision 7530 Mobile Workstation, developer edition

The world’s most powerful 15″ mobile workstation, redesigned to be thinner, lighter

  • 8thGen Intel® Core™ and Xeon® processors
  • AMD Radeon Pro WX and NVIDIA Quadro® professional graphics
  • 1st 15” Ready for VR mobile workstation with the NVIDIA Quadro P3200 graphics card
  • Largest & fastest memory on the market for mobile workstations up to 128GB of system memory & SuperSpeed memory of 3200MHz
  • Largest PCIe SSD storage capacity available for a 15-inch mobile workstation: up to 6TB
  • Single cable docking and Thunderbolt™ 3 connectivity
  • Ubuntu 16.04 LTS preinstalled
  • RHEL 7.5 certified (details below)
  • Available worldwide

Dell Precision 7730 Mobile Workstation, developer edition

The world’s most powerful 17″ mobile workstation, redesigned to be thinner, lighter 

  • AI developer platform
  • 8thGen Intel® Core™ and Xeon® processors
  • AMD Radeon Pro WX and NVIDIA Quadro® professional graphics
  • Largest & fastest memory on the market for mobile workstations up to 128GB of system memory & SuperSpeed memory of 3200MHz
  • Largest PCIe storage capacity available for a mobile workstation (up to 8TB)
  • Single cable docking and Thunderbolt™ 3 connectivity
  • Ubuntu 16.04 LTS preinstalled
  • RHEL 7.5 certified (details below)
  • Available worldwide

RHEL 7.5 certification and drivers 

As mentioned above, these systems will be certified for RHEL 7.5 and the needed drivers will be included in the distro.  That being said, the AMD and NVIDIA drivers that come with 7.5 are inbox drivers.  We will be posting drivers for both graphic cards that will include professional features not included in the inbox drivers.  Stay tuned!

Next up, the 5530.  Stay tuned!

Extra-credit reading

  • Introducing the Dell Precision 7530 and 7730 with Ubuntu — Ubuntu blog
  • Developer Editions of Precision Workstations Now Available — Direct2DellEMC
  • Precision workstations: Artificial Intelligence, Virtual Reality and Machine Learning solutions – Dell.com
  • Welcome the new Dell Precision developer editions – Barton’s blog
  • Dell Precision ‘Developer Edition’ mobile workstations run Ubuntu Linux and are RHEL certified – betanews
  • Dell refreshes Precision laptops with Ubuntu Linux pre-installed – ZDnet
  • Dell stuffs Intel Coffee Lake CPUs and Ubuntu into latest Precision workstations – The Inquirer
  • Dell launches new Precision mobile workstation line-up powered by Ubuntu – Softpedia

Pau for now….


Welcome the new Dell Precision developer editions!

May 24, 2018

Project Sputnik keeps rolling on!

Today I’m proud to announce the new the Linux-based Dell Precision Mobile workstation line: the 3530, 5530, 7530 and the 7730.  These systems, which represent the fourth generation of the Precision developer editions, come preloaded with Ubuntu and have been RHEL certified.

These new thinner, lighter, premium-built Precision mobile workstations feature the latest Intel Core and Xeon processors, blazing-fast memory and professional graphics.

The new Precision 3530

Available today 

Coming soon

  • Dell Precision 5530 Mobile Workstation, developer edition
  • Dell Precision 7530 Mobile Workstation, developer edition
  • Dell Precision 7730 Mobile Workstation, developer edition

A double click on the specs

Dell Precision 3530 Mobile Workstation, developer edition

15-inch fully customizable and high-performance mobile workstation at an entry-level price point

  • 8th Gen Intel® Core™ and next-generation Xeon® processors
  • Memory speeds up to 2666MHz up to 32GB
  • PCIe storage capacity up to 2TB
  • NVIDIA Quadro® P600 professional graphics cards with 4GB of memory
  • Support for 4K video to an external monitor at 60fps via HDMI 2.0
  • Ports include HDMI 2.0, Thunderbolt and VGA
  • Ubuntu 16.04 LTS preinstalled
  • RHEL 7.5 certified (details below)
  • Available worldwide

Dell Precision 5530 Mobile Workstation, developer edition

Dell’s thinnest, lightest and smallest 15″ mobile workstation with enhanced graphics, and a stunning design and display

  • Available in Platinum Silver or Brushed Onyx, with a 15.6-inch display fit into a 14-inch chassis.
  • Next-gen graphics up to NVIDIA® Quadro P2000.
  • 8th Gen Intel® Core™ and next-generation Xeon® processors
  • Enhanced 2666MHz memory speeds up to 32GB
  • Up to 4TB of SSD storage
  • USB Type C with x4 PCIe, Thunderbolt™ and HDMI 2.0 ports
  • Ubuntu 16.04 LTS preinstalled
  • RHEL 7.5 certified (details below)
  • Available worldwide

Dell Precision 7530 Mobile Workstation, developer edition

The world’s most powerful 15″ mobile workstation, redesigned to be thinner, lighter

  • 8th Gen Intel® Core™ and Xeon® processors
  • AMD Radeon WX and NVIDIA Quadro® professional graphics
  • Largest & fastest memory on the market for mobile workstations up to 128GB of system memory &  SuperSpeed memory of 3200MHz
  • Largest PCIe SSD storage capacity available for a 15-inch mobile workstation: up to 6TB
  • Single cable docking and Thunderbolt™ 3 connectivity
  • Ubuntu 16.04 LTS preinstalled
  • RHEL 7.5 certified (details below)
  • Available worldwide

Dell Precision 7730 Mobile Workstation, developer edition

The world’s most powerful 17″ mobile workstation, redesigned to be thinner, lighter 

  • 8th Gen Intel® Core™ and Xeon® processors
  • AMD Radeon WX and NVIDIA Quadro® professional graphics
  • Largest & fastest memory on the market for mobile workstations up to 128GB of system memory &  SuperSpeed memory of 3200MHz
  • Largest storage capacity available for a mobile workstation (up to 8TB)
  • Single cable docking and Thunderbolt™ 3 connectivity
  • Ubuntu 16.04 LTS preinstalled
  • RHEL 7.5 certified (details below)
  • Available worldwide

RHEL 7.5 certification and drivers

As mentioned above, all four developer editions will be certified for RHEL 7.5 and the needed drivers will be included in the distro.  That being said, the AMD and NVIDIA drivers that come with 7.5 are inbox drivers.  We will be posting drivers for both graphic cards that will include professional features not included in the inbox drivers.  Stay tuned!

How did we get here?

Project Sputnik launched at the end of 2012 with the svelte XPS 13 developer edition.  While this fit the bill for a lot of folks, there was a set of folks who needed something beefier.  The demand stayed steady so Sputnik team member Jared Dominguez decided to take it upon himself to get Ubuntu up and running on the Precision M3800.

Jared hammock hacking

From this he created step-by-step instructions and posted them to Dell Tech Center for community members to follow.

While customers were excited to be able get Ubuntu going on their systems, they wanted more.  Given this sustained demand, in early in 2015 the M3800 developer edition became an official product.

In Spring of the following year our Linux-based Precision offering went from one system to four and the 5510, 3510, 7510 and 7710 developer editions debuted.  Last year this line was revved and the next gen, the 5520, 3520, 7520, 7720 were announced along with the addition of the Precision 5720 All-in-One.  And today… (see above)

Stay tuned

Watch this space for the upcoming availability of the Dell Precision 5530, 7530 and 7730 developer editions as well as the AMD and NVIDIA graphics drivers for RHEL 7.5 .

Extra-credit reading

The History of the Ubuntu-based Dell Precision mobile workstation line

  • November 15, 2013 — Instructions posted to get Ubuntu up and running on a Precision M3800 mobile workstation
  • January 27, 2015 — Precision M3800 officially joins Project Sputnik
  • March 3, 2016 — Ubuntu-based Precision line 5510, 3510, 7510, 7710 announced
  • January 9, 2017 — Next gen Ubuntu-based Precision line-up announced, 5520 and 3520 available
  • March 18, 2017 — Precision 7520 and 7720 available
  • April 18, 2017 — Precision 5720 All-in-One available

Pau for now…


XPS 13 Developer Edition — the 7th gen is here!

January 4, 2018

-> Updated June 22, 2018 – Three 16GB/FHD configs added to the line up in the US

-> Updated Jan 26, 2018 – Added list of countries that offer the XPS 13 developer edition offline.

Today I am excited to announce the availability of the 7th generation of the Ubuntu-based XPS 13 developer edition.  Project Sputnik’s latest and greatest system is now simultaneously available in Europe, Canada and the United States.

The new XPS 13 developer edition (9370) features the 8th Generation Intel Quad Core, a brand new chassis, an improved display and smaller borders.

The 9370 is even thinner, lighter and smaller than its already svelte predecessor, the 9360. (Note, the 9370 does not replace the 9360, as the two will coexist.)  If you want more detailed specs, please scroll down dear reader. Before we get to the product details however, here’s a quick Project Sputnik backgrounder.

Project Sputnik, a recap

It all started back in 2012 with the wacky idea of creating a high-end Linux laptop targeted at developers.   An internal innovation fund gave the scrappy project team a little bit of money and six months to see if this idea would fly.

From day one, project Sputnik publically solicited input from the developer community.  It was this input and the tremendous community support that pushed the effort from project to a product.

The initial XPS 13 developer edition, available only as one configuration, debuted on November 29, 2012.  Fast forward five years and not only are we announcing the 7th generation of that initial product but the project itself has now expanded to become a full line of developer-targeted systems.

US and Canadian configurations

In North America, as mentioned above, the new XPS 13 developer edition is available in both the US and Canada.  The following are the available configurations in the two countries (Note: the links below point to the US configurations).

CPU | Memory | Storage | Display

Available as of April 3, 2018

European configurations

The new XPS 13 developer edition is available online in Europe in the following countries:

Online: UK, Ireland, Germany, Austria, France, Italy, Spain, Switzerland (French and German), Belgium, Netherlands, Sweden, Norway, Denmark.

In the following countries you can get a hold of the XPS 13 developer edition offline (phone or chat):

Offline: Czech Republic, Denmark, Emerging countries , Finland, Greece , Luxembourg, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Slovakia, Turkey, South Africa.

The following configurations are available both online and offline.

CPU | Memory | Storage | Display

  • i7 | 16GB |      1TB | UHD touch (3840 x 2160)
  • i7 | 16GB | 512GB | UHD touch (3840 x 2160)
  • i7 | 16GB | 512GB | FHD non-touch (1920 x 1080)
  • i7 |  8GB | 256GB | FHD non-touch (1920 x 1080)

9370 Specifications

Here’s a bit more detail behind the system specs.  These options are available as noted above.

  • 8th Generation Intel® Quad Core™, i5 (US and Canada only) and i7 versions
  • Memory options: 4GB, 8GB or 16GB Dual Channel SDRAM
  • Storage options: 128GB, 256GB, 512GB or 1TB
  • Ports
    • 2x Thunderbolt™ 3
    • Noble lock slot
    • Headset jack
    • DC-In & DisplayPort 1x USB-C 3.1
    • MicroSD card reader
  • Display options
    • UltraSharp 4K Ultra HD (3840×2160) InfinityEdge touch display
    • FHD (1920 x 1080) InfinityEdge display
  • Ubuntu 16.04 LTS preloaded
  • 1 year ProSupport

Who’d a thunk it

I gotta admit that five years ago the team and I would never have thought that we would be posting a blog announcing the 7th generation of the XPS 13 developer edition.  The thought of even a third generation would have bogled our minds.

Five years ago, thanks to the support of the community, Project Sputnik reached escape velocity.  This support, input and direction has not only continued but has grown over the last five years, enabling the Sputnik team to stop focusing on survival and instead focus on supporting a broader range of developer needs.

As we go forward, please keep driving us by sharing your input and experiences, be they be good, bad or ugly. 🙂

Thanks!

Barton

Extra-credit reading

  • 2018 starts with the best Linux laptop by Dell – Swap and I discuss the new system – VIDEO
  • Meet the New XPS 13: Stylish, Powerful and Better by Every Measure – Direct2Dell
  • Line up — New XPS 13 developer edition —  (9370)
  • Line up — XPS 13 developer edition — (9360)
  • Project Sputnik Turns Five! – November 29, 2017
  • 2012 — year one

Pau for now…


Project Sputnik Turns Five!

November 29, 2017

It was five years ago today, on November 29, 2012, that the first Project Sputnik system was launched.  Who would have thought we would have made it this far.

The reason why Project Sputnik is not only still around but keeps growing is because of the developer community.

In fact, without the input and support of the community, Project Sputnik would have been an interesting idea that disappeared after six months.

So how did we get here?

In the beginning

The project began back in early 2012 when I pitched the idea of creating a Linux-based developer laptop.  My audience was three guys in Dell who had put together an innovation fund and were asking employees to bring them their ideas.

When I made my pitch I stressed that in order to be successful, equally as important as what we created, was how we created it.  Development of the system needed to be in the open, and based on input directly from the developer community.  The committee asked me a few questions and told me they’d get back to me.

Ready, set, go

A month later I heard back from the committee.  They had given me the thumbs up, a little pot of money and six months to see if the idea of a developer laptop would fly.  From there I recruited some top and passionate talent and we had ourselves a team.

We started by cobbling together an initial install image that people could test.  In parallel we also sanity checked the idea with a local developers and a couple of web companies.  Since nobody threw up on the idea, on May 7, 2012 we went public.

The power of the community

In the blog post that introduced Project Sputnik we explained that project was “a six month effort to explore the possibility of creating an open source laptop targeted directly at developers.”  We pointed people at our rough install image and asked them to head to the Storm Session we had created and submit feedback, comments and ideas.

The amount of interest and input our initial post generated far exceeded anything we expected.  From there interest kept growing.  The tipping point however, came in response to our beta program.  We asked interested individuals to submit an online form.  We expected a few hundred responses, we got over 6,000.  Senior management was convinced and from there it was the march to launch.

 

Lift off and beyond

On November 29, 2012, a little over 6 months after the initial blog post, the first XPS 13 developer edition became available.  This first system, which came preloaded with Ubuntu 12.04 LTS and 1 year pro support, was available only as one configuration.  We chose to go with the highest end config we offered:  3rd gen Intel core i7 (Ivy Bridge), 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD and a screen resolution of 1366×768.

Less than two months later the second generation XPS 13 developer edition was launched.  From there the line has continued to grow and grow (see timeline below).  We will soon be introducing the 7th generation XPS 13 developer edition and over this past year we have rolled out four Ubuntu-based Precision mobile workstations as well as the new Precision All in One.

Thank you

On behalf of myself and the whole Sputnik team we would like to thank the developer community for making project Sputnik possible.  Over the last five years you have let us know what you’ve liked and where we could do better.  It’s because of this amazing support that we are still here today.

Thank you!

Project timeline

2012

2013

  • 2nd gen developer edition in US and Europe — February 18, 2013
  • 3rd gen developer edition in US along with instructions on getting Ubuntu up and running on a Precision 3800 mobile workstation — November 15, 2013
  • 3rd gen developer edition in US and Europe — December 20, 2013 

2015

  • Dell Precision M3800 mobile workstation joins Project Sputnik  — January 27, 2015
  • 4th gen Dell XPS 13 developer edition in US and Europe — April 9, 2015

2016

  • 5th gen XPS 13 Developer Edition in US, Ubuntu-based Workstations (5510, 3510, 7510, 7720) available worldwide — March 3, 2016
  • 5th gen XPS 13 developer edition in Europe — March 31, 2016
  • 6th gen XPS 13 Developer Edition in Europe and US — October 04, 2016

2017

2018

  • 7th gen XPS 13 developer edition to become available

 

Extra-credit reading

  • Original input from the community with regards to what they wanted in a developer laptop – Dell Idea Storm
  • Dell, Developers & Desktop Linux: the story of Dell’s project Sputnik – Video interview
  • How Dell’s Project Sputnik came to life – CIO.com
  • Project Sputnik News & Reviews, 2012 – 2017

 

Pau for now…


EdgeX – Open Source IoT effort hosted by the Linux Foundation

November 27, 2017

Last month at the Cloud Foundry Summit Europe, not only did I attend various sessions, but I got to deliver one myself.  The talk, entitled “EdgeX Foundry – Open Interop Platform for the IoT Edge,” gives a high level overview of the EdgeX Foundry which is an open source effort hosted by the Linux Foundation.  The presentation talks about the IoT roadblocks the Foundry addresses and how they plan to tackle them.

Here is a recording of the talk.  Directly below the video I have put an EdgeX Foundry cheat sheet and further down I have included my slides.

Enjoy!

 

EdgeX Foundry — The basics

Vision: Create a common interoperability framework that enables an ecosystem of plug-and-play, “EdgeX certified” components.

  • A vendor-neutral, open source project hosted by The Linux Foundation — launched in April 2017
  • 125,000 lines of code, 50+ members at launch
  • The result of customer and industry feedback

Goals

  • Build and promote EdgeX as unifying the IoT edge via a common open platform.
  • Enable plug-and-play components to allow solutions providers to create ecosystem of interoperable components around EdgeX platform architecture.
  • Certify components to ensure interoperability and compatibility.
  • Provide tools to quickly create EdgeX-based IoT edge solutions that can easily adapt to changing business needs.
  • Collaborate with relevant open source projects, standards groups, and industry alliances to ensure consistency and interoperability across the IoT.

 

Dell goes big on IoT

Coincidentally the same week as the summit Dell announced our new IoT division and how we plan to spend $1 billion over the next three years.  My talk doesn’t mention the announcement but I have put a few related articles below.

 

Extra-credit reading

Dell’s new IoT division

Pau for now…

 


Harnessing Kubernetes – Cloud Foundry Container Runtime

November 13, 2017

A few weeks ago I attended Cloud Foundry summit Europe 2017 held in Basel, Switzerland.  One of the more interesting topics that came up was the “Cloud Foundry Container Runtime,” an effort formerly known as “Kubo.”

Kubo, which comes from “Kubernetes on Bosh,” was created jointly by Pivotal and Google in order to provide a simple way to deploy and operate production-ready Kubernetes clusters on premise and in the cloud.  Back in June, the Kubo code was donated to the Linux Foundation as an open source project.

To learn more about Cloud Foundry Container Runtime (nee Kubo) and the larger context it fits within I sat down with Ian Andrews, Vice President of Products at Pivotal.  Armed with only a pen and paper Ian provides an overview of the container runtime and explains how it differs from the Cloud Foundry application runtime, as well as which workloads are most appropriate for each.

Ian ends by walking us through the recently announced, Pivotal Container Service (PKS) that VMware and Pivotal worked on together with help from the Google cloud team (PKS is based on the Cloud Foundry container runtime with extra goodies thrown in).

Time markers

  • 00:00 –07:25      Intro/background: How Kubo came about and how it and Cloud Foundry (CF) elastic runtime were renamed “Cloud Foundry container runtime” and “Cloud Foundry application run time”
  • 07:25 – 24:00      Sketches out the CF architecture.  From there he goes through each of the two components that sit on top of BOSH:   CF container runtime and CF application run time.  He then compares the two runtimes
  • 24:00 – 28:55      Goes through Pivotal’s implementation of the above: Pivotal Cloud Foundry and Pivotal Container Service.

Extra-credit reading

  • Take Kubernetes, and bish bash BOSH, you’ve got Container Runtime – The Register
  • Cloud Foundry Morphs Kubo into Container Runtime – sdxcentral
  • VMware teams up with Pivotal, Google Cloud on new container service – ZDNet
  • Google, VMware and Pivotal team for on-premises Kubernetes – The Register
  • Choosing the Right Tool for Your App Modernization Project – VMware | Blogs

Pau for now…


Open Source Summit videos – Sputnik, Bitnami, ARM and OpenShift

October 24, 2017

Last month I attend Open Source Summit (OSS) North America which was held in Los Angeles from September 11- 14.

This year the Linux Foundation brought four conferences under the umbrella name,  “The Open Source Summit” (OSS).  The four conferences were LinuxCon, ContainerCon, CloudOpen plus the new “Open Community Conference.”

Interviewing and being Interviewed

While at the conference, besides giving away an Ubuntu-based XPS 13 developer edition aka “project Sputnik,” I found myself on both sides of the camera.  I was interviewed by Swapnil Bhartiya around the history of Project Sputnik and I in turn interviewed representatives of ARM, Red Hat’s OpenShift, and Bitnami’s Kubernetes effort.

Enjoy!

Project Sputnik

Here I am holding forth with regards to the origins and ideas behind Project Sputnik, our line of Linux-based developer systems.

 

Bitnami and Kubeless

  • Sebastian Goasguen’s Kubernetes-focused company SkipBox was recently acquired by Bitnami – the name comes from “(Skip)per” like Kubernetes and Tool(box) — which helps onboard people to Kubernetes.
  • Bitnami acquired SkipBox as a way to get into the Kubernetes space.  SkipBox’s key offering was “Kubeless,” a Kubernetes-native serverless framework which helps people move from Physical machines/VMs/cloud to containers and then to Kubernetes.

 

ARM’s development platform

  • Julio Suarez of ARM walks us through their demo at the Open Source summit.  The team was demoing their server enterprise development platform “Mali.”  Unlike Raspberry Pi, Mali is pretty beefy with 10GB Ethernet ports, SATA, PCI etc.
  • The platforms are clustered into a group of three using Docker Swarm (could also use Kubernetes, Marathon Mesos).  The swarm is running an ecommerce website, ported to ARM from x86.  The website is composed of 14 microservices.

 

Red Hat’s OpenShift

  • Harish Pillay talks about Red Hat’s Container as a Service offering, OpenShift.  While OpenShift began life with its own version of containers, they have pivoted to employ industry standard containers and Kubernetes.
  • Different pieces and technology can be swapped in and out as long as they are written to standards.

Conference reflections

Given the continued growth in the number of Linux Foundation projects and the number of sub events, the attendance of little over 1,900, albeit from 37 different countries, seemed a bit light.  Additionally the show floor seemed sparse compared to past.

I’m guessing that high level Open Source events don’t have the allure they once did, particularly since open source is a given in most environments today.  In turn, people are seeking out more targeted events around specific technologies eg DockerCon, KubeCon.  All that said it was a valuable conference thanks to the always interesting hallway track.

Dell EMC’s presence

I would be remiss if I didn’t at least mention my employer’s presence at the summit.

Dell EMC was represented by the rebranded “{code}” team who now represents the open source efforts across Dell Technologies.  While {code}’s press release introduced their new name and remit, the news they led with concerned REX-Ray:

REX-Ray, an established open source container orchestration engine that enables persistence for cloud-native workloads, now includes plugins for 15 storage integrations, with the addition of NFS, local block services and VFS, immediately making those storage platforms CSI-compatible.

Extra-credit reading

  • Open Source guides:  At the event the Linux foundation introduced a set of succinct Open Source guides targeted at enterprises to help
    • guide their use of and contribution to open source software and communities
    • explain the value of open source to management
    • formalize and organize their existing open source efforts
  • Videos: The keynote sessions were recorded and are available to watch.
  • Event Photos: To view a selection of photos from the events visit the Linux Foundation’s website.

Pau for now…

 


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