Skip to content

Author: Martin Smith

Start monitoring your home internet connection

NewRelic quietly released a new product called Synthetics earlier this year. While services like Pingdom have been around for a while, New Relic’s Synthetics has been the first option that made me actually shut down my own personal monitoring systems.

For the last five years or so, I’ve been monitoring everything, from websites I run to internet services at rental property. I generally used Nagios, and configured it to alert me via email when things go south. The data has always been a help when dealing with power companies, ISPs, and hosting providers. You feel empowered when you can say things like, “I had packet loss 24 times yesterday,” or, “The power has been surging every 2 hours for 30 seconds.” In fact, I’ve discovered I generally have better data than the customer service folks I’m speaking with.

Chef Provisioning on the Rackspace Public Cloud

Many companies use configuration management tools to manage their cloud servers and other cloud infrastructure. But some configuration management tools are now also enabling users to not just manage cloud servers, but actually create the servers as well. As part of the DevOps Automation Service, I most often work with a popular configuration management tool called Chef. Working in conjunction with Chef, there is also a project called Chef Provisioning that can use APIs to build cloud servers and Docker containers on many different providers (AWS, Azure, OpenStack, etc). Chef Provisioning can then bootstrap the new instance or container and begin configuration management tasks.

I’d like to introduce one specific driver for Chef Provisioning, the chef-provisioning-fog driver. This driver can be used with Chef Provisioning to build Rackspace cloud servers with simple Chef recipes. I will show an example of how to use these tools to automate building cloud servers, and provide you with an example you can try locally.

The Trouble with Blogs

Hi there! You’ve found my first blog post. I’m Martin. I’m a Husband, DevOps Engineer, Racker, Photographer, and Traveler. I love the idea of making the world a better place while I’m here. And hopefully my journey is interesting enough for you to follow along.

My experience of life is that it is not divided up into genres; it’s a horrifying, romantic, tragic, comical, science-fiction cowboy detective novel. You know, with a bit of pornography if you’re lucky.

– Alan Moore

As you probably noticed, I’ve started a blog.