Going to FOSDEM has always been a mix of feelings: is that time of year when you meet many friends from the Free Software community, you learn some interesting things that you didn’t know about, you share some knowledge, and you may have a fair amount of chocolate and beer in a usually cold weather.
Sometimes talks are not what they seem, and oftentimes you can’t get into a room because it’s full. But there’s always the chance to learn something new, so here’s my list of notes:
- Play etcd if you want to try it and see what happens when you make changes.
- Minikube: mini Kubernetes for developing on your laptop.
- Software Heritage API is publicly available.
- OpsTheater offers a stack for IaaS with Puppet, Foreman, GitLab, Icinga, ELK+Graphana, Mattermost (integrates easily with GitLab).
- Recommendation: move things from Hiera to Foreman smart parameters. Debugging Hiera can be a nightmare if you have hundreds of YAML files.
- octocatalog-diff compares two Puppet catalogs without deploying the changes. Facts are not live and changes in providers won’t show. A Foreman plugin is available too as a proof of concept.
- Puppeteer helps find configuration smells that violate recommended best practices.
- Legacy docs are big, comprehensive, and feature based. Modular docs are lean, concise, targeted, and user-story based. Content rot makes docs hard to find and navigate. Document only what users need, as user stories.
- Perl6 grammars make it easy to implement informal DSLs. Reading recommendation: Domain Specific Languages, by Martin Fowler (2010).
This was my first time at the Config Management Camp in Gent and I had a great time and you’ll see from my notes below that it was definitely worth it.
- Recommendation: use find-nodes from PuppetDB with i parallel SSH (pssh).
- Services resiliance depends on human resiliance (HumanOps).
- tiny puppet installs applications on any OS (slides):
- e.g. tp install puppetdb
- tinydata is the default source for application data.
- Vox Pupuli maintain abandoned puppet modules.
- Reading recommendation: Thinking in Systems: A Primer, by Donella Meadows.
- Puppet extensions:
- Ruby functions can take lambda arguments.
- dalen-puppetdbquery query_resources function to find other nodes resources.
- Puppet faces allows new puppet subcommands (dalen-puppetls).
- Foreman unknown gems (slides):
- Foreman hooks plugin.
- Trends show changes over time.
- Bookmark searches. Puppet can ask the search API for information with puppet-foreman module.
- Class import has rules to hide things in the UI.
- hammer ssh -c ‘uptime’ -s ‘architecture=…’
- foreman-rake hosts:scan_out_of_sync
- There are several Foreman UI themes.
- API docs are available in your Foreman instance as http://foreman/apidoc
- Types and providers:
- require “wirble” in ~/.irbrc
- Pro tip: use Puppet types and providers for managing web APIs.
- Inspiring story by Annie Hedgpeth, My Journey Into Technology Through Inspec (video).
- Getting data to the end user:
- Memex maps the Dark Web.
- NASA beards like GitHub, sysadmins don’t.
- juju allows users choose their applications, configure and scale them.
- Someone mentioned that libral (a native Resource Abstraction Layer) seemed interesting.
- Quality automation with rudder-dev (slides)
- undef: refactoring old puppet code (slides)
- Puppet 3.x is EOL.
- Hiera overload, bloated YAML. Clean it up!
- Lack of validation/CI:
- VCS top notch:
- Make it easy as possible to avoid mistakes.
- Put full context in the commit message.
- Use the body to explain what and why, not how.
- Commit often, perfect later, publish once.
- The git pickaxe shows you how to find any text in the commits.
- GitMagic helps setting contribution guidelines.
- Make newbie experience better:
- Start with control-repo.
- Pick supported forge modules, then pick approved ones.
- puppet module skeleton
- Write as little as possible.
Hope you find the notes useful. Let me know if you have any questions.