Ansible modules development

Hello again

So as a hobby I have started working on an Ansible module to allow adding static routes to several hosts , I got out my recently acquired Python skills and started cracking at it , if you are curious about how to start developing ansible modules here is a good place to start . the module development itself is not hard to get started with , and if you are already familiar with ansible and python ( in fact you don’t need python as you can write modules in any language but I have chosen python  for mine ) if should be fairly straight forward.

I have chosen this module for implement because it seems that it is a common thing to do as a System Administrator and there is no specific module to do this, of course you could just use the command module to add a static route but this module aims to do a bit more than just that, I am thinking about implementing this for the most relevant unix like platforms , namely :

 – Linux

– Red Hat

– Debian

– Ubuntu

– BSD

– Openbsd

– Freebsd

Solaris

If I can find the time and resources I will try to implement the same for also HPUX and Aix but as I don’t have direct access to those platforms at the moment I cannot promise that I will do so. For now the priority is Linux of course .

The code is available from my github repo but for now it’s just an embryo.

Cheers

 

Rui

RHEL 7 and Systemd

Hello again

So with much anticipation from the community Red Hat has released RHEL 7 , and with it an Enterprise Linux Disto that actually ships Systemd , the replacement for the old style SysV init . I am not saying this is good or bad, traditionally people don’t like change so this is a bit theme right now, in any case here is a Cheat Sheet of the old RHEL 6 equivalents

RHEL 6 RHEL7
chkconfig servicename on systemctl enable servicename
chkconfig servicename off systemctl disable servicename
chkconfig servicename on systemctl enable servicename
chkconfig –list systemctl list-unit-files –type=service
service servicename start systemctl start servicename
service servicename stop systemctl stop servicename

You can also check the more in depth cheat sheet here

One of the things that I found to be a bit strange at the beginning was hostnamectl , that as you might have guesses controlls the hostname , so now changing the hostname for your server is something like

#hostnamectl –static set-hostname myserver.mydomain.com

And yes there is also nmcli and firewallctl but that is another article by itself.

Next: nmcli or How to manage your network on RHEL 7

 

 

 

Newrelic plugins

Hello Internet

Today I was browsing the New Relic webpage searching for what plugins you could install , and I must say I was quite impressed by the vast quantity of supported stuff some of my favorites would be

Memcached

Rackspace Load Balancers

Apache / Nginx of course

Varnish

Redis

Object Rocket Mongo DB

PHP Opcache (nice to have )

For those who don’t know what New Relic is , it’s a software/service  that allows you to monitor the entire stack for your application and collect interesting data back , so you can kill all those nasty bottlenecks, Nice work guys !!!

 

Cheers

 

Ouya – Geek gaming for the masses

For a while now I wanted to blog about Ouya , the android based games console that is in my opinion one of the best Android related projects on the internet .

So first of all I would like to clarify that this console is in no position to compete with the traditional names (X-box,wii,Playstation, etc )  as the target audience is difference and so far the number of Famous Titles is very small (if there are any even) this is more aimed at “Retro” players or people that play android games.

One of the best apps available  is actually XBMC , so it can be used as a low power , high value Media Center. The reason why I say “high value” is that for the price this little baby goes a long way … it costs 99$ (or euros or pounds or whatever) .

To be honest I would be willing to pay that just for the Media Center features, not even mentioning the gaming part .

The hardware itself is very nice, the small box is actually very powerful and quiet , it has a fan but you almost never hear it.

The control is quite ergonomic and responsive and the batteries last quite some time, one of the features I would like to see included in the future is a cradle that you can put your remote in to charge the batteries . As for the software itself , ouya features a customized version of Android, and it looks amazing

ouya1

One of the best things about this little console is that all games must have a “Free to play” version, of course you can unlock the full game but if you just want to try it there is no reason why you shouldn’t be able to download the game and play it.

The ecosystem still has a long way to go , and for example at this moment I would like to buy an extra controller for my Ouya and in the online store the only option there is , is to buy a refurbished controller, which is … not ideal.

As for the tech specs go the SOC inside is quite good but it could use an update to a more beefy platform.  I think that as long as they can grow their ecosystem people will gladly pay for this sort of thing but we need to have the games to go with it. I wish there would be more “Famous” names available for this console so it could actually grow and gain market .

So I would say it’s an awesome buy but at this point it only applies if you are a casual gamer and/or need a Media Center.

At the time I am writing this article there are around 1112 games available in  https://www.ouya.tv/games/ .

This one is my favorite so far

https://www.ouya.tv/game/Sine-Mora/

Happy Gaming yall !!!!!

Dell Latitude E7440 Review

So , the company I work for has assigned me a laptop. The Dell Latitude E7440 which I am reviewing now. One of the requisites for me is that the device is fully compatible with any Linux OS , and this one is. I have loaded it with Fedora 21 and so far it has served me well . Although there are a few issues that have more to do with the laptop itself then the linux distro of choice.

One of the things that sort of disappointed me initially was the keyboard , it bends down when you press the keys in the middle (near the g and h keys) and the whole feel to it is not very nice overall . However the whole laptop is nice, the cpu is more than capable (I7 vpro) capable of good performance even when running a few vms  (which I do ) the model I got has 8GB of ram and a 128G Samsung PM851 SSD , fast and energy efficient as expected.

The camera is very good and the laptop is a very good buy apart from the keyboard issue I have already mentioned.

The Intel® Integrated HD Graphics 4400 works perfectly with Linux and the current version of Gnome (3.14.4) runs very well indeed.

I am still benchmarking the battery life , as I tend to use the device more attached to the docking station (did I mention it has a docking station)  .

More on this matter soon.

To wrap up , the device is a good buy if you are looking for a good Linux laptop, however the keyboard is not very good and Dell should improve this design failure.

You can check the full specs at Dell’s website here

http://www.dell.com/uk/business/p/latitude-e7440-ultrabook/pd

 

The small server that could

Hello again Internet

While searching for a small format server for my lab at home , I found the following device from SuperMicro that has just blown my mind. This little server sports a Intel® Xeon® processor D-1540 , can take up to Up to 128GB ECC RDIMM DDR4 2133MHz or 64GB ECC/non-ECC   UDIMM in 4 sockets , the feature list is very nice for a low budget server and has even ipmi as an extra.

One of my favourite features is the fact that it contains 2x 2.5″ fixed drive bays and 4x 3.5″ Hot-swap drive bays, this allow me to have the OS on the internal drive bays and data in the hot swap drives , which is exactly what I wanted 😀 .

This got my interest as a home server and despite the fact that supermicro has not yet launched the device I am anxiously waiting for it to be available .

The complete feature set is available here .

For now all I can do is to talk about it, as soon as I get my hands on this bad boy I will be posting a full review .

 

Until then

Cheers

 

Rui

 

Get your freak on

Hello again

So … as a part of my job I was reading this article about a newly discovered ssl vulnerability , this time on the client side,http://blog.cryptographyengineering.com/2015/03/attack-of-week-freak-or-factoring-nsa.html and I thought, “surely some distros must have disabled this EXPORT ciphers” and right I was ,

Centos/RHEL 6

#   SSL Cipher Suite:
# List the ciphers that the client is permitted to negotiate.
# See the mod_ssl documentation for a complete list.
SSLCipherSuite ALL:!ADH:!EXPORT:!SSLv2:RC4+RSA:+HIGH:+MEDIUM:+LOW

So at least on this point the attach is mitigated as browsers are not allowed to use these ciphers .

Looks good !!! 😀

 

Simpana … stop and disable

Hello World

So recently I was working on a automation project and, as a part of a scheduled work I needed to stop the commvault client Simpana, reboot a server and then safely restart the client, I wanted to make sure that the service was only started when I told it to, if you use one of the following

– Simpana stop

– Galaxy stop

when the service is restarted the simpana services are started back up ( as expected), the way to achieve this is simple :

Disable the services at boot

chkconfig Galaxy off

reboot , do what you need to do  and then

chkconfig Galaxy on

service Galaxy start

That is all 🙂