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Postgres 11 - a First Look

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Server
OSS

Postgres 11 is almost here, in fact the latest beta shipped today, and it features a lot of exciting improvements. If you want to get the full list of features it is definitely worth checking out the release notes, but for those who don’t read the release notes I put together a run down of some what I consider the highlight features.

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PostgreSQL 11 Beta 4 Released With JIT Compilation Disabled By Default

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OSS

The fourth and likely last beta release of PostgreSQL 11 is now available.

One of the headlining features of PostgreSQL 11 was the new LLVM JIT compiler option but as of a few days ago it's been disabled by default due to some performance problems and at this stage seeming to really only help long and complex queries. But for those wanting to try out this just-in-time support can easily enable it with a configuration option in this beta as well as for the final release.

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PostgreSQL 11: something for everyone

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Server
OSS

PostgreSQL 11 had its third beta release on August 9; a fourth beta (or possibly a release candidate) is scheduled for mid-September. While the final release of the relational database-management system (currently slated for late September) will have something new for many users, its development cycle was notable for being a period when the community hit its stride in two strategic areas: partitioning and parallelism.

Partitioning and parallelism are touchstones for major relational database systems. Proprietary database vendors manage to extract a premium from a minority of users by upselling features in these areas. While PostgreSQL has had some of these "high-tier" items for many years (e.g., CREATE INDEX CONCURRENTLY, advanced replication functionality), the upcoming release expands the number considerably. I may be biased as a PostgreSQL major contributor and committer, but it seems to me that the belief that community-run database system projects are not competitive with their proprietary cousins when it comes to scaling enterprise workloads has become just about untenable.

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PostgreSQL adopts a code of conduct

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Server
OSS

The PostgreSQL community has, after an extended discussion, announced the adoption of a code of conduct "which is intended to ensure that PostgreSQL remains an open and enjoyable project for anyone to join and participate in".

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How Kubernetes' Founder is Building an Un-Distribution at Heptio

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Interviews
OSS

Unlike other software vendors that are part of the Kubernetes community, Heptio doesn't want to build a software distribution of Kubernetes. Rather, the Heptio Kubernetes Service (HKS) is about support and services to help organizations deploy and manage upstream Kubernetes. It's an approach that Heptio has referred to as being an Un-Distribution.

"Our goal with the whole idea of the un-distribution is we want to provide the best parts of a distribution without necessarily some of the downsides that come along with that," Beda said.

Beda said that generally what happens with a distribution of an open source project is that a software vendor takes the upstream code, cleans it up so it's fit for enterprise consumption and then shipping a combination of tools that are prove to work well together.

"Upstream Kubernetes doesn't need a lot of clean up, because the community is so strong and we want to keep it that way," he said.

As such, a lot of the work that Heptio is involved with is all upstream with effort to make Kubernetes easier to install and use. Beda said that Heptio is putting a lot of effort into the kubeadm installer effort from the upstream project as well as the cluster API effort. As part of HKS, Beda said that Heptio is developing a set of validated designs, which integrate best practices for deployment.

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Server: Ubuntu Server, Canonical's Embrace of Buzzwords and LF on Storage

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Server
  • Ubuntu Server development summary – 11 September 2018

    Cloud-init version 18.3.39 adds jinja template support for user-data scripts and cloud config. As part of this feature, any cloud metadata crawled by cloud-init is presented as template variables. Any cloud-provided metadata such as ip addresses, hostname, region, availability_zone can be referenced in user-data cloud config or scripts without having to crawl and parse metadata in separate tooling.

    Since cloud-init generalizes some of this instance metadata across all clouds, it now allows user-data to be more flexible when deploying to different cloud platforms. See Using instance metadata for more information.

  • What is multi-cloud?

    Tech companies, Canonical included, have a problem. That problem is living in buzzwords and jargon, and then assuming everyone knows what we are talking about.

    At Canonical we call them ‘Canonicalisms’, other companies have their own names for it.

    Whilst we can joke about it, this over-reliance on jargon is a genuine barrier to our audience, developers, customers, people in need of technical help, people in need of assistance in understanding what all these buzzwords are. The jargon is a barrier to people understand what something like the cloud is, in its many different guises, and how these different architectures and strategies can be used for tangible business benefits.

    Fortunately, that’s a problem which is solvable.

    Canonical has decided to produce a whitepaper that details everything you need to know to understand every type of cloud from public to private and managed to multi-cloud. But, we haven’t stopped there, because these technologies don’t live in a bubble, they’re connected to technologies such as Kubernetes, containers, serverless computing, servers and virtual machines.

    Still, understanding the basics about these different technologies is only a piece of the picture, which is why we’ve also included guidance on the best strategies to use, use cases, when and where to deploy and make it a success.

  • Know Your Storage: Block, File & Object

    Dealing with the tremendous amount of data generated today presents a big challenge for companies who create or consume such data. It’s a challenge for tech companies that are dealing with related storage issues.

Server: Docker Swarm, Kubernetes, DevOps, Running Apache Cassandra on Kubernetes

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Server
  • Difference between Docker swarm and Kubernetes

    When you are on learning curve of application containerization, there will be a stage when you come across orchestration tools for containers. If you have started your learning with Docker then Docker swarm is the first cluster management tool you must have learnt and then Kubernetes. So its time to compare docker swarm and Kubernetes. In this article, we will quickly see what is docker, what is kubernetes and then comparison between the two.

  • Stop Killing Your Cattle: Server Infrastructure Advice

    If you've spent enough time at DevOps conferences, you've heard the phrase "pets versus cattle" used to describe server infrastructure. The idea behind this concept is that traditional infrastructure was built by hand without much automation, and therefore, servers were treated more like special pets—you would do anything you could to keep your pet alive, and you knew it by name because you hand-crafted its configuration. As a result, it would take a lot of effort to create a duplicate server if it ever went down. By contrast, modern DevOps concepts encourage creating "cattle", which means that instead of unique, hand-crafted servers, you use automation tools to build your servers so that no individual server is special—they are all just farm animals—and therefore, if a particular server dies, it's no problem, because you can respawn an exact copy with your automation tools in no time.

    If you want your infrastructure and your team to scale, there's a lot of wisdom in treating servers more like cattle than pets. Unfortunately, there's also a downside to this approach. Some administrators, particularly those that are more junior-level, have extended the concept of disposable servers to the point that it has affected their troubleshooting process. Since servers are disposable, and sysadmins can spawn a replacement so easily, at the first hint of trouble with a particular server or service, these administrators destroy and replace it in hopes that the replacement won't show the problem. Essentially, this is the "reboot the Windows machine" approach IT teams used in the 1990s (and Linux admins sneered at) only applied to the cloud.

  • Running Apache Cassandra on Kubernetes

    The Cassandra controller can, of course, perform operations within the Cassandra cluster. For example, want to scale down your Cassandra cluster? Instead of manipulating the StatefulSet to handle this task, the controller will see the CRD change. The node count will change to a lower number (say from six to five). The controller will get that state change, and it will first run a decommission operation on the Cassandra node that will be removed. This ensures that the Cassandra node stops gracefully and redistributes and rebalances the data it holds across the remaining nodes. Once the Cassandra controller sees this has happened successfully, it will modify that StatefulSet definition to allow Kubernetes to decommission that pod. Thus, the Cassandra controller brings needed intelligence to the Kubernetes environment to run Cassandra properly and ensure smoother operations.

    As we continue this project and iterate on the Cassandra operator, our goal is to add new components that will continue to expand the tool's features and value. A good example is Cassandra SideCar (shown in the diagram above), which can take responsibility for tasks like backups and repairs. Current and future features of the project can be viewed on GitHub. Our goal for the Cassandra operator is to give devs a powerful, open source option for running Cassandra on Kubernetes with a simplicity and grace that has not yet been all that easy to achieve.

Server: CI and CD, Kubernetes and Istio

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  • Understanding the Difference Between CI and CD

    There is a lot of information out there regarding Continuous Integration (CI) and Continuous Delivery (CD). Multiple blog posts attempt to explain in technical terms what these methodologies do and how they can help your organization. Unfortunately, in several cases, both methodologies are usually associated with specific tools or even vendors.

  • How to survive an outage and live to tell about it!

    Kubernetes Federation‘s objective is to provide a control plane to manage multiple Kubernetes clusters. Unfortunately, Federation is still considered an alpha project with no timeline for General Availability release. As a stop gap for Federation services a couple of different solutions are available for dispersing cluster endpoints: a cluster stretched across multiple datacenters or multiple clusters deployed across datacenters.

    Kubernetes recommends that all VMs be isolated to a single datacenter: “when the Kubernetes developers are designing the system (e.g. making assumptions about latency, bandwidth, or correlated failures) they are assuming all the machines are in a single data center, or are otherwise closely connected.” Therefore, stretching an OpenShift Cluster Platform across multiple data centers is not recommended. However if you need to have a disaster recovery plan today this article will detail a potential solution.

  • Istio 101: “The future of the service mesh is one which operates in symbiosis with technologies like Knative and Apache Whisk”

    Istio is gaining a lot of attention especially now that 1.0 is here. But does it have what it takes to become the de facto service mesh for Kubernetes? If you ask Brian ‘Redbeard’ Harrington, Product Manager for Istio at Red Hat, the answer is yes. “With Istio, the deployment is straightforward and the integration with Kubernetes is top notch. It feels as if it should have been there all along.”

    Istio 1.0 arrived earlier this month; all the core features are now ready for production use.

    If you are already familiar with the features presented in 0.8, you should know that the list of new features presented in 1.0 is not that long; the team chose to focus on fixing bugs and improving performance. If you’d like to see all the changes introduced in Istio 1.0, I invite you to read the release notes.

10 Reasons Why Your Business Is Better Off With A Linux Server

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GNU
Linux
Server

When choosing a server for your business several considerations come into play especially cost and security. But the most important consideration of all, at least in my opinion, is your business. You should always bear in mind that there is no point cutting corners on getting a server when your business depends on it.

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Servers and Red Hat Leftovers

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Red Hat
Server
  • Build a secure Docker host environment on Linux systems

    Run the latest stable OS release and patches on container hosts. Unlike VMs, containers share host OS resources and files, so a security issue could affect the entire Docker estate. OS management isn't difficult for enterprise IT teams, but approach with caution -- review all documentation prior to committing an update for Docker hosting systems. Virtual snapshots are a useful tool for this process, providing a log of changes and a rollback target if needed.

    Application security is only as good as what's on the stack below it. Assess the security settings on the host in question. Anyone with administrator-level access to the OS can manipulate the containers in the default configuration. Administrators should use keys for remote login to increase the environment's security level. In addition, implement a firewall, and restrict access to only trusted networks. Keep the attack surface to a minimum.

  • GDB 8.2 Released, Kernel 4.19 Officially the Next LTS Series, Cloudera Launches Open-Source IoT Architecture and Purism's Librem 5 Production Update

    Cloudera has launched an open-source, IoT architecture in collaboration with Red Hat and Eurotech. According to the press release, this end-to-end architecture is "based on open standards and is integrated, flexible and runs on multi- or hybrid-cloud environments", and it's "designed to provide the foundational components that organizations need to quickly and securely roll out IoT use cases".

  • How to feel connected on a distributed team

    In March 2016, I started a new role as a fully remote employee. I was joining a company that I highly respected to do something I loved, and I no longer had to get in a car every day. Not having to commute was a real sell, especially since it’s not uncommon to spend an hour each way to get to work in the DC area. Missing out on lunch with coworkers and free snacks in the office was worth the sacrifice. Plus, I had plenty of friends and family in the area, so I wouldn’t feel the impact of being alone for eight hours a day. I was convinced that I was going to live my dream life.

  • Market Value should Soar in coming Months: Red Hat, Inc. (RHT)
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