Austin Cloud Camp Wrap-up

Austin recently had a CloudCamp and my guess is that it drew in close to 100 attendees.

Before I get into the actual event, let me start this post with a brief story.

During the networking time, I committed one of the worst networking faux pas that one can make when networking: I tried a lame joke upon meeting someone new. One of the other attendees asked me why my company was interested in CloudCamp. I sarcastically replied to his inquisition by explaining that we were really excited about CloudCamp because we do a lot of work with weather instrumentation. Anything to do with clouds, we are so there… Silence.


Another blink…. Fail.

At this point I explain that I am an idiot and making sarcastic jokes that fail all the time and I duck out to a different conversation. So, forgetting about my awkward sense of humor, lets move on. Learn from me, don’t make weather jokes at a CloudCamp.

Notes from CloudCamp Austin

At any event, one of the best things that can happen is meeting people in your field. I was able to meet some cool guys in Austin with ServiceMesh and Pervasive. There are also beginning plans to start an AWS User Group in Austin which will be really awesome. Ping me if you want the scoop and I will let you know as I find anything out about it.

The talk I attended was led by the agile admin’s very own: Ernest Mueller. The notes from it are below.

Systems Management in the Cloud

One of the discussion points was how people were implementing dynamic scaling and what infrastructure they are wrapping around that.

Tools people are using in the cloud to achieve dynamic scaling in Amazon Web Services (AWS):
OSSEC for change control and security
Ganglia for reporting
Collectd for monitoring
– Cron tasks for other reporting and metric gathering
Pentaho and Jasper for metrics
– RESTful interface for the managed services layer. Reporting also gets done via RESTful service.
Quartz scheduler to do scaling with metrics around what collectd is monitoring.

When monitoring, we have to start by understanding the perspective of the customers and then try to wrap monitors around that. Are we focused on user or provider? Infrastructure monitoring or application monitoring? The creator of the application that is deployed to the cloud and the environment can provide hooks for the monitoring platform. Which means that developers need to be looking on the horizon of ops early in the development phase.

This is a summary of what I saw at CloudCamp Austin, but I would love to hear what other sessions people went to and what the big takeaways were for them.

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