- Paperback: 362 pages
- Publisher: O'Reilly Media; 1 edition (June 27, 2016)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1491924357
- ISBN-13: 978-1491924358
- Product Dimensions: 7 x 0.8 x 9.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 12 customer reviews
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- #1 in Books > Computers & Technology > Networking & Cloud Computing > Network Administration > Email Administration
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Infrastructure as Code: Managing Servers in the Cloud 1st Edition
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About the Author
Kief Morris has been designing, building, and running automated IT server infrastructure for nearly twenty years, having started out with shell scripts and Perl, moving on to CFengine, Puppet, Chef, and Ansible among other technologies as they’ve emerged. He is the head of ThoughtWorks’ European practice for Continuous Delivery and DevOps, helping clients find more effective ways of building and managing infrastructure operations.
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The middle portions of the book look at design patterns related to the cloud. Often "anti-patterns" are explored as well to show what not to do. Templating servers and configuration management is detailed.
Part III of the book was basically a summary of DevOps. I found the information to be too general here, and sometimes not that relevant to Infrastructure. To give an example, the author discusses Code Reviews where he says: "All too often, code reviewing becomes a wasteful activity that doesn't lead to improvements actually being made to code. Pair programming is more rigorous, with input from two people leading to better design and improvements made in real time."
The author often states opinions like this, but does not back them up by anything but his opinion. There was no evidence provided to show that code reviews are wasteful, while pair programming boosts productivity. Maybe this has been the case for the author, but I would have liked to seen more evidence for a lot of his claims. A lot of the asides in the book were taken from the author's personal experiences and used to prove something.
I found the stronger parts of the book where the author shows configurations and details. Parts in which the author relied on personal experiences and generalizations were not as good. Overall though, this was an informative book that is helping define the new rules for cloud based architectures.
1. Redesign or reconfigure things so the task isn't necessary at all.
2. Implement automation that handles the task transparently, without anyone needing to pay attention.
3. Implement a self-service tool so that the task can be done quickly, by someone who doesn't need to know the details, preferably the user or person who needs it done.
4. Write documentation so that users can easily carry out the task on their own.
As usual, things are easier said than done, "Infrastructure as Code: Managing Servers in the Cloud" manages to describe the challenges, as well as some practical methods to build solutions to deliver in today's fast-paced IT infrastructure building and management.
After the first few introductory chapters that lay down the basic definitions and context, the author goes on to describe patterns and best practices for building server templates, managing configuration and changes to configuration, as well as the pitfalls you might encounter when you move from a traditional system administration mentality to dynamic, automated "infrastructure as code" perspective. You might also find the chapters dedicated to testing infrastructure changes, change management pipelines for infrastructure, and continuity for infrastructure particularly useful.
If you're building / managing a dynamic and flexible information system infrastructure in the cloud or on premise, regardless of your particular tool choice for automation, you'll find yourself facing the challenges described in this book, and therefore the outlined patterns will apply to your problems to a great extent. Therefore, I can easily recommend this book to any IT professional in that position.