Beginner’s Guide to CloudFormation and AWS CLI: Part 1

AWS keeps pushing the boundaries in Cloud Computing, and we all want to take a bite. The benefits are countless, and the cost predictable, making it suitable for individuals, startups, small companies, and even the largest of enterprises (like Amazon themselves).

When you do get started, however, you find yourself presented with 55 colourful, modern-looking icons on the console, and many acronyms, each representing a different service offering from AWS.

This series is focused on one of those 55: CloudFormation, and if you’re reading it, you’re probably keen on getting started. Why bother? Infrastructure as code, and thus version controllable infrastructure. Trivially rollback-able stacks. One command to deploy a near-arbitrarily complex infrastructure, and similarly to take it down. There’s tremendous potential.

My favourites are that I’m not encumbered by the myriad of options the console presents, and that it’s reproducible by nature, allowing me to do what I do best: trial and error.

You, though. You’ve seen a CloudFormation template or three before, and understand some of the concepts behind the technology, but have discovered that writing them isn’t as simple as it seems. This series will try and guide you through some first steps, and some practices to help you find your feet when you’re out on your own.

Continue reading “Beginner’s Guide to CloudFormation and AWS CLI: Part 1”

RT @samnewman: If you want to play around with mesos, vault, consul et al, this is a good place to start: https://t.co/UZIcVEVsTp

Push-based Remote Deployment with Git (Revised)

Git is everyday. It has become an essential in the programmer’s toolbox and supports all the good buzzwords – maintainability, agility, predictability, you name it. The hooking functionality it provides has spawned an industry of its own, with companies like Codeship, Hakiri, Travis CI and such being fundamentally structured atop it.

These hooks are straight forward to work with, so just as the creators of those companies would’ve, we can jump in and have a go ourselves. I use it so I can easily push changes to web servers, etcetera, instead of having to manually (and error prone-ly) sync files, and that’s what I’ll be demonstrating here – one push to deploy.

It’ll be a simplified version of Digital Ocean’s great Git hooks post, and an improvement to a similar post I wrote almost a year ago (which has a critical security flaw (see my comment on that post)).

So lets get started…

Continue reading “Push-based Remote Deployment with Git (Revised)”