REDtalks.live #36 – Christian Weber from GitHub on Infrastructure as Code

Delighted to have GitHub’s Christian Weber on the show this week to share his experiences with Infrastructure as Code.

Watch this episode to hear Christian explain some personal experiences, from his days before he worked at GitHub, where Infrastructure/Configuration as Code would have made a big difference. Learn from first-hand experience how certain practices can bring order back to a dire situations.  But if you’re too busy right now, you could just come and hear our talk at the F5 Agility conference in Boston (August 13th – 16th) titled “Super-NetOps: Configuration as Code”


“…by treating everything, like a configuration file, as a template we go back into our previous state without relying on a failure state as a means of recovery…”

Christian Weber, GitHub


 

Enough words from me, Christian’s wisdom awaits you in the video below:

 

Thanks for listening!

REDtalks.live #35 – How to get started

In this episode I’m joined by F5 Consultant, Vinnie Mazza, to hear his experiences with getting started on his programmability and automation journey. Vinnie shares with us how a project outside of work  inspired him to learn new skills that, coincidentally, are directly transferable to the workplace.

In this video you will see how, armed with no more than curiosity and a couple of Raspberry Pie’s, Vinnie revolutionized a local police training facility that was in dire need of improvement. The skills he learned from this project not only helped others but also took him on a journey through scripting languages and frameworks that turned him into the automation-ninja that many customers get to appreciate today.

Remember, listeners! Everyone starts from the beginning. Find a project, doesn’t have to be at work, and see what you can come up with.

Linked referenced in this episode:

Thanks for listening (and sorry for having some mic problems this week… New microphone ordered!)

REDtalks.live #34 – GitHub Integration v0.2 released

Greetings automators!!! I am delighted to be sharing with you the release of the GitHub Webhook Server for BIG-IP v0.2. w00t!

This release was a major re-write that touched almost every line of code. Why? Well, as with many early prototypes, in the first release I just wanted to see if it could be done. And from the experiment I learned a lot about integrating with GitHub, took a lot of notes, and, well, v0.2 is the result of all those findings: a more robust integration that you should totally take a look at yourself!

The two key adds to version 0.2 are:

  • deployment queuing – so we don’t DDoS the Control Plane with many concurrent declaration commits at once
  • octokit –  in v0.1 I used native HTTP calls to the GitHub API. In v0.2 I switched to the GitHub octokit/rest.js node module, which simplified a lot of code. And simple = robust.

There’s a couple other features I snuck in there, which you can see in this demonstration video:

 

If there are any features you’d like to see, please create a GitHub Issue against the repository, here: https://github.com/npearce/n8-GHE_IaC_WebHook/issues

For more episode on Network Infrastructure as Code, go here: Network Infrastructure as Code

Thanks for listening!

REDtalks.live #33 – Joel King on What is Code?

Great to have Joel King join me again on REDtalks.live to answer the question, “What is code?”

The answer isn’t as straightforward as you may think, not with practices like Infrastructure as Code at play. In this episode, Joel does a great job at clarifying some misconceptions and clearing up some concepts that should not have been assumed one way or the other.

Also, a significant bonus, I learned more about the Apollo Space Missions in this episode than I thought I’d ever know. Thanks for the wealth of space-launch knowledge, Joe.

Thanks for listening!

REDtalks.live #32 – Stats & Dashboards

We appear to be leaving the era of polling devices for stats and then processing them into something meaningful. This is what happy customers are telling me! So, how should we be operating in the future?

Organizations are standardizing on app-centric performance monitoring and dash-boarding technologies. They’re using open source technologies like ‘StatsD’, ‘GraphiteDB’, ‘Grafana’, and ‘Prometheus’. And its up to the infrastructure vendors to present useful data to these systems, or get out of the way!

To address such asks I set out on a new project called ‘BigStats’. BigStats is an small piece of code installed onto an F5 BIG-IP App Services device that enables it to push application statistics into popular databases and dashboards.

Watch this episode to see how simple this solution really is:

Here’s the code: GitHub

Thanks for listening!

REDtalks.live #31 – Network Infrastructure as Code – Part 3

Install, Setup and Troubleshooting

Other episodes in this series:

Welcome to part 3 in this Network Infrastructure as Code series. In the previous episodes I provided some demonstrations and also best practices with Role-based Access Control and Change Rollbacks. In this episode we’ll cover how to setup your own Network Infrastructure as Code environments, in addition to some troubleshooting tips should you run into any problems.

Thanks for listening!

REDtalks.live #30 – Network Infrastructure as Code – Part 2

Role-based Access Control and Change Rollback

Other episodes in this series:
Welcome to part 2 in this Network Infrastructure as Code series. In the previous episode we introduced the concept of Network Infrastructure as Code and performed a quick demonstration. In this episode we’re going to cover best practices around Access Control and how to roll back changes.
Infrastructure as Code is a great stepping stone towards integrated and automated ‘continuous deployment’. However, for those not quite ready to hand over control to an automated system, applying traditional approval processes to network infrastructure as code is probably a good idea. You’ll also notice that Network Infrastructure as Code has great change back-out capabilities, much better than traditional management models.
Enough of the words, take a look at the video below and let me know your thoughts!
Thanks for listening!

REDtalks.live #29 – Network Infrastructure as Code – Part 1

Introduction to Network Infrastructure as Code

Other episodes in this series:

Greetings viewers and welcome to a short series of technical demonstrations on Infrastructure as Code.

In my field experience I noticed that most Infrastructure as Code implementations were oriented around ‘server’ infrastructure. As a huge fan of developer tooling being used to improve traditional operations, I thought I’d take a look at bringing Infrastructure as Code practices to managing F5’s BIG-IP App Services appliances.

In this video you’ll see the management of L4 – L7 App Services entirely from within GitHub Enterprise. Totes cool, right! In this first episode I’l just run through a quick demo, followed by a more detailed review in Part 2 (coming soon).

 

Thanks for listening!

REDtalks.live #28 – Jason Edelman of NetworkToCode.com

Today we’re joined by Jason Edelman, co-founder of awesome network automation training and services company networktocode.com, and co-author of the recently published O’Reilly book titled, “Network Programmability and Automation“.

As the subtitle states, this book is a reference tool aimed at developing “skills for the next-generation network engineer”. Joined by co-authors, Scott S. Lowe & Matt Oswalt, the book covers many great concepts, including one pushed heavily by the f5.com/super-netops training program (and one of my personal favorites), the importance of abstraction and templating.

Watch the episode here:

Thanks for joining us, Jason!

REDtalks.live #26: WWT on why Super-NetOps is different

Some great content from friends at World Wide Technology (WWT) explaining how the Super-NetOps Training Program differs from traditional infrastructure automation training.


“Its a very interesting and very exciting program”
– Mark Wall


 

In this podcast, live from the WWT Global Sales Conference in Las Vegas, Principle Solutions Architect, Joel King, and Practice Lead for Application Delivery, Mark Wall, explain what the Super-NetOps training program is all about and why its so important.

From the podcast
On the challenges organizations are facing, Mark Wall shares, “What it really boils down to is the infrastructure, the networking infrastructure, traditional IT Operations folks really have a very hard time keeping up with the development side of the organization.”

Wall continuous, “Theres a big gap in how the infrastructure side is able to deliver services that are required by the development organization. So, it almost boils down to ‘I can’t keep up‘, ‘I cant deliver those services fast enough‘ or ‘I don’t really understand how my piece, my networking component, my application delivery component, fits into the public cloud or into this automated process’ and there’s kind of a disconnect in there.”

“That skillset gap is something that all of our customers ask about, and they struggle with. Traditional network engineers don’t have the programming background. They don’t have the understanding of some of the technologies around different data structures.” adds Joel King, “How do I train those engineers to be able to have the skills that they need to do the type of automated deployments that Mark’s talking about. That’s a big key area for many of our customers is, what skills do I need, what training, what education do I need, and thats one of the things that the Super-NetOps program is trying to address. To enable those engineers with new skills to be able to be successful”.

WWT is supporting the Super-NetOps movement by putting together enterprise environments that support multiple technologies, beyond just F5’s BIG-IP, to help customers build end-to-end solutions.

Conclusion
As I stated in my DevOps Enterprise Summit talk last year, “Give me a Swiss Army Knife, and MacGyver I do not become”. So, its great to see Mark and Joel building upon the initial Super-NetOps program and adding huge value to their customers.

Enough from me! Make time to listen to this great podcast here: WWT on Super-NetOps