Thursday, January 29, 2009

Keeping Busy – Akamai changes, Change windows, and QA

Been super busy cleaning up from the move, and trying to make progress on the QA environment buildout and other projects. We need to get QA up so we can shut down the old datacenter, and stop a bunch of replication scripts we wrote. We’ve been building out a lot of VMs, and messing with the Netapp Flexclones and such, pretty useful. Should be done with QA later next week hopefully, but with the late start I’m not sure. It also depends how the weekend release goes.

I am trying to provision a bunch of new properties with Akamai and the China CDN. It’s always slow going getting approval from the government when we provision, but it works out well. Kind of annoyed I bought a Akamai SSL certificate (up to ten domains) and now they need professional services when I want to use a domain off it. Its like nothing is ever simple with them, too bad they own the market, if I don’t like it I can’t go elsewhere

Need to nail down some better maintenance windows and communications about releases and timing, this should help the sanity of all the IT folks, not just my area (Techops). I wish I had a good change management system that was simple and good for maintenance. Every solution I look for for simple notifications and change management and notification is complex, expensive, and overkill for my needs.

QA is using a terminal server to do testing, which avoids them having to do hostfile hacks. It should help the testing accuracy, and we can much better control how they do their testing. Simple fix for an annoying problem!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Datacenter cutover this weekend

We are putting the finishing touches on a project which will move us from an old design (many 1U boxes, and some DBs with DAS arrays) to a modern, flexible infrastructure.  In the new design there is NAS, Vmware, and much less hardware.   It should also allow us to scale much better while fully utilizing storage and server hardware.  We have plans to launch a new product later this year, so this prepares us to better launch the product.  We still have some loadtesting to do, but we are in pretty good shape. 
After this project is over we have a couple of other large projects to complete before March to help merge together environments in our hosting facility.   Should be a very long weekend, but looking forward to being on the new environment.