Migrating away from Puppet’s deprecated import feature

The import keyword in Puppet has been deprecated and will be removed in Puppet v4. That’s good to know, but what can you do about it if you’re using it? Let’s take a look at how it might be used. All directories below are relative to your environment directories, such as /etc/puppet/environments/production, unless a full path is given (starts with /).

Current Setup

Here’s what your site manifest might look like:

import nodes/*pp

When Puppet starts, it looks at all the *pp files in the nodes directory and loads them. Those files might look like this, one for each node or node-class:

Continue reading

Entering #vDM30in30 late

Some of you may have seen #vDM30in30 on Twitter recently. It’s based off a 30 blogs in 30 days challenge by Greg Ferro to get people using blogs, both to encourage people to write more, but also as a social media. I think it’s a great idea. Social media isn’t just Twitter, or FaceBook, or LinkedIn, etc, and one of those has some significant character restrictions, plus writing always benefits from repetition.

The #vDM30in30 challenge was started by the crew of virtualdesignmaster.com to encourage people to write one blog post a day for 30 days. I’m taking it in a slightly different direction. I already write at least one post a week, so to encourage the blog as a form of social media, I’m doing an extra 30 posts in the month of December. They’ll all be in the vDM30in30 category and it will be more than one a day, most likely, but much shorter than my normal technical or opinion pieces.

I encourage anyone reading to take this challenge for yourself, in whatever version suits you. If you’d like to participate but don’t have your own blog, find me on twitter as rnelson0 and I’d be glad to have a guest author on my blog. Enjoy!

On Mentoring: “Perfection is an illusion, it’s pursuit is a pathology”

A while back, my wife, Michelle Block, and I were talking about getting stuff done – actually done, not just part of the way done – when she said something that I think is really profound:

“Perfection is an illusion, it’s pursuit a pathology.”

I really love this statement. It’s very simple, yet full of meaning. I asked Michelle where this statement came from and she gave me a very good story to tell.

Dr. Michelle Block is an Associate Professor of Anatomy & Cell Biology at Indiana University and an expert in her own field. Michelle takes very seriously the need to foster future generations of scientists and is very proud to be able to mentor some of these future scientists. One of the most inspiring experiences in her own development was reading Rosalyn Yalow’s Nobel Prize Speech, and she hopes to be able to provide similar encouragement to her successors. With that in mind, Michelle had been speaking with a colleague about the best way to explain to the upcoming generation of scientists what is expected of them, what it takes to be a good scientist. Her colleague asked her, “What’s the difference between excellence and perfection?”

Continue reading