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Practice of Cloud System Administration, The: DevOps and SRE Practices for Web Services, Volume 2

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  • Copyright 2015
  • Dimensions: 7" x 9-1/8"
  • Pages: 560
  • Edition: 1st
  • eBook (Watermarked)
  • ISBN-10: 0-13-347855-6
  • ISBN-13: 978-0-13-347855-6

“There’s an incredible amount of depth and thinking in the practices described here, and it’s impressive to see it all in one place.”

—Win Treese, coauthor of Designing Systems for Internet Commerce

The Practice of Cloud System Administration, Volume 2, focuses on “distributed” or “cloud” computing and brings a DevOps/SRE sensibility to the practice of system administration. Unsatisfied with books that cover either design or operations in isolation, the authors created this authoritative reference centered on a comprehensive approach.

Case studies and examples from Google, Etsy, Twitter, Facebook, Netflix, Amazon, and other industry giants are explained in practical ways that are useful to all enterprises. The new companion to the best-selling first volume, The Practice of System and Network Administration, Second Edition, this guide offers expert coverage of the following and many other crucial topics:

Designing and building modern web and distributed systems

  • Fundamentals of large system design
  • Understand the new software engineering implications of cloud administration
  • Make systems that are resilient to failure and grow and scale dynamically
  • Implement DevOps principles and cultural changes
  • IaaS/PaaS/SaaS and virtual platform selection

Operating and running systems using the latest DevOps/SRE strategies

  • Upgrade production systems with zero down-time
  • What and how to automate; how to decide what not to automate
  • On-call best practices that improve uptime
  • Why distributed systems require fundamentally different system administration techniques
  • Identify and resolve resiliency problems before they surprise you

Assessing and evaluating your team’s operational effectiveness

  • Manage the scientific process of continuous improvement
  • A forty-page, pain-free assessment system you can start using today

Sample Content

Table of Contents

Preface xxiii

About the Authors xxix


Introduction 1


Part I: Design: Building It 7


Chapter 1: Designing in a Distributed World 9

1.1 Visibility at Scale 10

1.2 The Importance of Simplicity 11

1.3 Composition 12

1.4 Distributed State 17

1.5 The CAP Principle 21

1.6 Loosely Coupled Systems 24

1.7 Speed 26

1.8 Summary 29

Exercises 30

Chapter 2: Designing for Operations 31

2.1 Operational Requirements 31

2.2 Implementing Design for Operations 45

2.3 Improving the Model 48

2.4 Summary 49

Exercises 50

Chapter 3: Selecting a Service Platform 51

3.1 Level of Service Abstraction 52

3.2 Type of Machine 56

3.3 Level of Resource Sharing 62

3.4 Colocation 65

3.5 Selection Strategies 66

3.6 Summary 68

Exercises 68

Chapter 4: Application Architectures 69

4.1 Single-Machine Web Server 70

4.2 Three-Tier Web Service 71

4.3 Four-Tier Web Service 77

4.4 Reverse Proxy Service 80

4.5 Cloud-Scale Service 80

4.6 Message Bus Architectures 85

4.7 Service-Oriented Architecture 90

4.8 Summary 92

Exercises 93

Chapter 5: Design Patterns for Scaling 95

5.1 General Strategy 96

5.2 Scaling Up 98

5.3 The AKF Scaling Cube 99

5.4 Caching 104

5.5 Data Sharding 110

5.6 Threading 112

5.7 Queueing 113

5.8 Content Delivery Networks 114

5.9 Summary 116

Exercises 116

Chapter 6: Design Patterns for Resiliency 119

6.1 Software Resiliency Beats Hardware Reliability 120

6.2 Everything Malfunctions Eventually 121

6.3 Resiliency through Spare Capacity 124

6.4 Failure Domains 126

6.5 Software Failures 128

6.6 Physical Failures 131

6.7 Overload Failures 138

6.8 Human Error 141

6.9 Summary 142

Exercises 143

Part II: Operations: Running It 145

Chapter 7: Operations in a Distributed World 147

7.1 Distributed Systems Operations 148

7.2 Service Life Cycle 155

7.3 Organizing Strategy for Operational Teams 160

7.4 Virtual Office 166

7.5 Summary 167

Exercises 168

Chapter 8: DevOps Culture 171

8.1 What Is DevOps? 172

8.2 The Three Ways of DevOps 176

8.3 History of DevOps 180

8.4 DevOps Values and Principles 181

8.5 Converting to DevOps 186

8.6 Agile and Continuous Delivery 188

8.7 Summary 192

Exercises 193

Chapter 9: Service Delivery: The Build Phase 195

9.1 Service Delivery Strategies 197

9.2 The Virtuous Cycle of Quality 200

9.3 Build-Phase Steps 202

9.4 Build Console 205

9.5 Continuous Integration 205

9.6 Packages as Handoff Interface 207

9.7 Summary 208

Exercises 209

Chapter 10: Service Delivery: The Deployment Phase 211

10.1 Deployment-Phase Steps 211

10.2 Testing and Approval 214

10.3 Operations Console 217

10.4 Infrastructure Automation Strategies 217

10.5 Continuous Delivery 221

10.6 Infrastructure as Code 221

10.7 Other Platform Services 222

10.8 Summary 222

Exercises 223

Chapter 11: Upgrading Live Services 225

11.1 Taking the Service Down for Upgrading 225

11.2 Rolling Upgrades 226

11.3 Canary 227

11.4 Phased Roll-outs 229

11.5 Proportional Shedding 230

11.6 Blue-Green Deployment 230

11.7 Toggling Features 230

11.8 Live Schema Changes 234

11.9 Live Code Changes 236

11.10 Continuous Deployment 236

11.11 Dealing with Failed Code Pushes 239

11.12 Release Atomicity 240

11.13 Summary 241

Exercises 241

Chapter 12: Automation 243

12.1 Approaches to Automation 244

12.2 Tool Building versus Automation 250

12.3 Goals of Automation 252

12.4 Creating Automation 255

12.5 How to Automate 258

12.6 Language Tools 258

12.7 Software Engineering Tools and Techniques 262

12.8 Multitenant Systems 270

12.9 Summary 271

Exercises 272

Chapter 13: Design Documents 275

13.1 Design Documents Overview 275

13.2 Design Document Anatomy 277

13.3 Template 279

13.4 Document Archive 279

13.5 Review Workflows 280

13.6 Adopting Design Documents 282

13.7 Summary 283

Exercises 284

Chapter 14: Oncall 285

14.1 Designing Oncall 285

14.2 Being Oncall 294

14.3 Between Oncall Shifts 299

14.4 Periodic Review of Alerts 302

14.5 Being Paged Too Much 304

14.6 Summary 305

Exercises 306

Chapter 15: Disaster Preparedness 307

15.1 Mindset 308

15.2 Individual Training: Wheel of Misfortune 311

15.3 Team Training: Fire Drills 312

15.4 Training for Organizations: Game Day/DiRT 315

15.5 Incident Command System 323

15.6 Summary 329

Exercises 330

Chapter 16: Monitoring Fundamentals 331

16.1 Overview 332

16.2 Consumers of Monitoring Information 334

16.3 What to Monitor 336

16.4 Retention 338

16.5 Meta-monitoring 339

16.6 Logs 340

16.7 Summary 342

Exercises 342

Chapter 17: Monitoring Architecture and Practice 345

17.1 Sensing and Measurement 346

17.2 Collection 350

17.3 Analysis and Computation 353

17.4 Alerting and Escalation Manager 354

17.5 Visualization 358

17.6 Storage 362

17.7 Configuration 362

17.8 Summary 363

Exercises 364

Chapter 18: Capacity Planning 365

18.1 Standard Capacity Planning 366

18.2 Advanced Capacity Planning 371

18.3 Resource Regression 381

18.4 Launching New Services 382

18.5 Reduce Provisioning Time 384

18.6 Summary 385

Exercises 386

Chapter 19: Creating KPIs 387

19.1 What Is a KPI? 388

19.2 Creating KPIs 389

19.3 Example KPI: Machine Allocation 393

19.4 Case Study: Error Budget 396

19.5 Summary 399

Exercises 399

Chapter 20: Operational Excellence 401

20.1 What Does Operational Excellence Look Like? 401

20.2 How to Measure Greatness 402

20.3 Assessment Methodology 403

20.4 Service Assessments 407

20.5 Organizational Assessments 411

20.6 Levels of Improvement 412

20.7 Getting Started 413

20.8 Summary 414

Exercises 415

Epilogue 416


Part III: Appendices 419

Appendix A: Assessments 421

A.1 Regular Tasks (RT) 423

A.2 Emergency Response (ER) 426

A.3 Monitoring and Metrics (MM) 428

A.4 Capacity Planning (CP) 431

A.5 Change Management (CM) 433

A.6 New Product Introduction and Removal (NPI/NPR) 435

A.7 Service Deployment and Decommissioning (SDD) 437

A.8 Performance and Efficiency (PE) 439

A.9 Service Delivery: The Build Phase 442

A.10 Service Delivery: The Deployment Phase 444

A.11 Toil Reduction 446

A.12 Disaster Preparedness 448

Appendix B: The Origins and Future of Distributed Computing and Clouds 451

B.1 The Pre-Web Era (1985–1994) 452

B.2 The First Web Era: The Bubble (1995–2000) 455

B.3 The Dot-Bomb Era (2000–2003) 459

B.4 The Second Web Era (2003–2010) 465

B.5 The Cloud Computing Era (2010–present) 469

B.6 Conclusion 472

Exercises 473

Appendix C: Scaling Terminology and Concepts 475

C.1 Constant, Linear, and Exponential Scaling 475

C.2 Big O Notation 476

C.3 Limitations of Big O Notation 478

Appendix D: Templates and Examples 481

D.1 Design Document Template 481

D.2 Design Document Example 482

D.3 Sample Postmortem Template 484

Appendix E: Recommended Reading 487


Bibliography 491

Index 499



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