The Race For Resources

StorageToday, disk space is not an issue for most of us. I remember when my father came back at home with my first hard drive (80MB!) for my Amiga in the Nineties. My reaction was “Wow, we will never fill it!“. Today, if I make a sum of all my storage at home, I’m above 10TB! And I’m sure that I will have to add more capacity in the coming months. No, this blog post is not related to “big data” but more a reflection about how developers write applications today. Again, when I was learning programming languages, professors always remembered to the students to keep our eyes on our resources: memory, CPU cycles, I/O and storage. One of the golden rule was: “If you allocated memory, don’t forget to free it! malloc() means free()“. Yeah, at this time, there was no garbage collector. I’m a little bit nostalgic tonight! ;-). Today, computer resources are not a problem anymore. Their prices continue to decrease and the reflex of most developers is just to add resources (“Your application is slow? Add 2 cores and 2 gig of memory“).

I’ll show you a good example of the explosion of resource requirements. Today I was performing some cleanup on my corporate laptop. Being a consultant, it runs plenty of tools such as management consoles provided by $VENDORS. Working for multiple customers running different versions of this product (a well-known firewall brand), I’ve different versions of the tools installed. Of course, I need to keep multiple versions because you need to use the right one to access the firewall running the corresponding version. Just have a look at this screenshot:

Console Tools Size
(Click to enlarge)

I wonder what will ask the next version of the console as disk storage…


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