LogStash - You don’t need to deploy it to use it

This article is the first out of two. It’s based on based on the LogStash Getting Started Guide. You should probably read that instead, if you don’t yet know what LogStash is. It’s a more thorough introduction.

My goal with this article is rather to get you set up as fast as possible with a functioning local LogStash setup. The next post will provide a few pointers on how to get started parsing logs with LogStash.

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Sensu Checks to report Metrics

Once you understand the basics of creating a Sensu check, creating a check that reports metrics is actually pretty simple. Here’s the lowdown.

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Creating a Sensu Check

I recently did a lightning talk at DevOpsMtl about creating a Sensu check. Sensu is a monitoring framework that lets you build your monitoring solution, exactly how you need it.

Despite tons of checks being available already (see the ‘plugins’ directory of the sensu-community-plugins repo), you may run into situations where you need to build your own. Thankfully, it’s pretty easy.

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Hosting a Website on S3

I recently took part in a discussion about static site generators like Middleman, Jekyll and Octopress. I mentioned that I was hosting this site on S3, and also doing more advanced stuff, like setting up redirects.

Here’s how I do it. It’s pretty simple.

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Do You Back Up Your DNS Records?

At the time of writing, Zerigo DNS is being hit by a DDOS attack (reference starting here on Twitter).

I was able to migrate our company’s services – SocialGrapes and SocialGrapesLAB – to DNSimple pretty quickly, mainly because I remembered most of our DNS settings. But still, I had no idea about some of the finer details, like mail server settings, and didn’t immediately remember to put back the records for our CDN.

So in the process of fixing all of this, I decided to add two simple tasks to my rake backup task. They may be useful to you too:

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Bach from the dead

Bach from the dead

I think it’s pretty funny that the last article on my blog is 3 years old, and starts with “I haven’t been blogging much lately” :-)

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A new Ruby and Rails blog is born

I haven’t been blogging much lately. I’ve been too busy with some vacation time and, of course, work.

This is going to change, but it’s not all going to happen on Programblings.

It’s been a long time coming, but giraffesoft finally has a blog. We’re going to kickstart our blog with a week of open source releases.

At giraffesoft we like DRY code. We all know that creating Rails plugins is barely more work than actually implementing the functionality inside of a specific application. For that reason, we create plugins all the time when working on projects.

So this week, we’re going to polish up a few of them – big and small – and officially introduce them to the world.

For now, please let me direct you to the brand-spanking new giraffesoft blog.

If you’re too lazy to read the introductory post, here’s the punchlines:

Rubinius for the Layman, Part 3 - Try Rubinius in 20 minutes

I guess we’ve all heard last week’s sad news about Engine Yard diminishing the awesome support they’ve given the Rubinius project. That’s personally how I see it: they’ve put the project on steroids for roughly a year, rather than “they’re now cutting back” x people.

As Brian Ford pointed out, Rubinius is a community project. And Rubinius is not going away. A lot of people can’t wait to have a Ruby written more in Ruby than in C or C++. Koichi Sasada (lead developer on Ruby 1.9) even recently projected that Rubinius would eventually be the Ruby implementation of choice.

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git-config has autocomplete?

Seen on a git installation (dunno about previous versions), installed through MacPorts 1 with the +bash_completion option.

$ git config #tab
apply.whitespace               core.compression        ...
branch.                        core.fileMode           
clean.requireForce             core.gitProxy           
color.branch                   core.ignoreStat         
color.branch.current           core.logAllRefUpdates   
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Installing ruby 1.9preview1 on OS X Leopard

Tonight I’m trying conciseness.

Editor’s note: I failed.

I recently decided to test my git_remote_branch gem with Ruby 1.9, for the heck of it. Well, I was making sure it ran on a bunch of platforms: Windows, Ruby 1.8.7 and with the most recent Git version (, get it). So it seemed fitting to check it out under Ruby 1.9.

On Leopard, the only missing dependency to Ruby 1.9 is readline 5.2. This article will present the installation of both. And help heat up your apartment.

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