Music Free Tech

I’ve been working in IT since the late 1990s and have been a full time systems administrator since 2000. In this blog, you will find a number of things. First, I’ve documented a few things that I’ve learned over the years. Second, this is a place for me to blog about various tech related things.

Working with Advanced Docker Operations

Date: 16 February 2018

Categories: Docker

We all know, at this point, that Docker is the new hotness. Running individual containers can help with development but doesn’t do much for us when it’s time to deploy the application. There’s where orchestration comes in. Docker Swarm is a great tool to use when you first get started with orchestration. Swarm is built into Docker. There’s no additional software to install. You can learn more about running services in Docker Swarm in my video course “Dive into Orchestration with Docker Swarm”.

Docker - A Better Way to Build Apps

Date: 16 October 2017

Categories: Docker

In a very short time, Docker has grown from a cool idea to the way cloud services are run. Getting into Docker can be daunting. That’s why I wrote the video training course “Docker - A Better Way to Build Apps” from Packt Publishing. This course provides an introduction to Docker and will teach you all you need to know to get started developing your own applications in Docker. You’ll learn how deploy Docker locally and on GCE, Azure, and Amazon AWS.
DPM is great for backing up Microsoft stuff but I ran into something really, really odd. In short, the msdpm kept crashing. I took a while but I was eventually able to track down which object was causing the crash by trying each failed sync one at a time. (DPM troubleshooting step 1.) For the record, it was the system protection for a Windows Server 2012 R2 server but I’m not convinced that that matters.

SCCM Updates and Powershell

Date: 12 October 2015

Categories: SCCM, WMI, CIM, powershell

Microsoft is doing cool things with Windows Server with what was originally server core and is now the base version of Windows Server. Combined with Powershell remoting and there’s a lot of power from the command line. Unfortunately, is surprisingly difficult to tell if updates are available and to trigger their installation. If you’re not using SCCM, you can run sconfig.exe and select option 6 to manage your updates but packages and applications pushed through SCCM don’t show up there.

Switching to Docker and CoreOS

Date: 10 October 2014

Categories: docker, coreos

I learned about Docker over the summer at ApacheCon in Denver. While Docker, itself, wasn’t on the program, it came up several times as various people were talking about PaaS systems. Once I started to dig into it, I understood why people were so excited. After playing with it more on my own, I was hooked. I decided that I wanted to move this site to Docker. In this post I’ll tell you a bit about what I did, how I did it and why.

Endnotes with Org-mode

Date: 15 July 2014

Categories: emacs, org-mode

I was recently writing an internal peer review for work. Because I’m a happy emacs user, I wrote the peer review in org-mode and exported it to PDF using org-latex-export-to-pdf. The problem was that our interal format requires that I use endnotes and emacs exports my footnotes as, well, footnotes. So, here’s the quick and dirty on how I got the exporter to give me end notes. First of all, you need to tell LaTeX that you want to use endnotes.

Importing iCal Into Org-mode

Date: 03 June 2014

Categories: ical, emacs, org-mode

I’ve been using emacs and org-mode for some time to manage my tasks. Org-mode has a great feature which shows and agenda view which includes upcoming scheduled items and deadlines. One of the things that was missing was the ability to view my calendar (which is in Google Calendar) in the agenda. There are a couple of ways of dealing the syncing the calendar data. One of the ways I tried was org-caldav.

Cluster SSH with tmux

Date: 24 September 2013

Categories: tmux

I was working today and, as I glanced at #lopsa, I saw this little gem. 13:50 <geekosaur> tmux has a broadcast-to-all-terminals thing Wait, what?! I had to check it out. It turns out that tmux has a window option called synchronize-panes which lets you “Duplicate input to any pane to all other panes in the same window.” I’ve been using cluster ssh to occasionally log into a bunch of my boxes at once and run the same command on all of them at the same time.

Switching to a Standing Desk

Date: 20 May 2013

Categories: work environment

System administrators have a fairly sedentary job. With the exception of occasionally racking or unracking servers, we’re pretty much desk bound. I’m certainly no exception. Several months ago, I noticed that sitting all day was starting to cause me pain in the backs of my thighs. Now, I don’t know about you, but I’m not a big fan of pain, especially while I’m working. The pain would, eventually, drive me from my chair.

Emacs and tmux

Date: 16 October 2012

Categories: emacs, tmux

Hello. My name is PerlStalker and I’m an emacs user. I love emacs and use it for nearly everything but there are a few things it’s not good at. (“Like editing,” I hear all you warped vi users cry.) Among them, and most important to me, are window management and terminals. Let’s start with terminals. I use eshell from time to time to do quick and dirty things on the command line but I always run into weird things that don’t work like I expect.