Is the argument of ‘application portability’ a valid one for containerization?

Preface: I am a huge supporter of containerized distributed applications. It give me all sorts of nerd good feelings.

One of the biggest arguments for containerization of applications is that the application becomes portable. It no longer cares what it is running on, nor where, or how many. Windows server running a Unix FORTRAN application? No problem! Windows app running on a CentOS host? Done it! And while these are cool and nerd-awesome configurations. How often does an application actually change root host environments? If an application was/is made with .NET it is to leverage the advantages .NET has over other options. If RAILS, its for the advantages, if PHP, again, for the advantages over other offerings. To move away from those advantages negates the reason for selecting the solution.

On a related note; are we not simply replacing one type of vendor lock for a lock at another layer of abstraction?

Some news from AWS…

…as of now(ish) all AWS accounts get a rolling 7 days of CloutTrail functionality as part of the free tier! While not helpful to business / enterprise; it defiantly helps the solo / small org. Check it out here.

Out of the box performance: PHP + PDO + MariaDB


Another week, another evening at the Pub with some friends and colleges. Somehow or the other we got on the topic of database insert performance and how long it would take to reach the 32bit max integer.  That being 2.14somethingsomethingsomething billion. I wagered that the the max signed int could be a reached relatively quickly, my college on the other hand said ‘no no no; it  would take hours. Days even’. And so, a wager was born.

The requirements:

PHP + PDO + a SQL database; default configurations. No editing php.ini to allow higher memory usage, no disabling *SQL disk_flush in my.cnf, etc. Raw install, logic, go for the gold.

The process:

On the local development machines we limit the container service manager to limit hardware usage to 7 of the 2.4Ghz CPUs and 15Gb of memory. For the disk we run 256GB SSD, desktop models; nothing fancy.

On that hardware I setup a PHP 7:latest service and a MariaDB:latest service; then linked them. From there it was a matter of connection credentials and increasing the batch insert count until it was close, but not over, the default memory usage per thread. Then how to start up multiple threads, easy enough, bash helped out there. So using bash I spun up 10 threads and let the process run for 1 to 2 minutes.

Getting the max value after the given time frame I was able to extrapolated out how long  it would take to fill the 2.14 billion rows.

The Result:

At current the fastest time requirement would take 1.526 hrs to go from 0 to 2.14 billion row inserts. I know we can get faster but ran out of time today.

The Source:

If you are interested in the code / stats /etc the repo is here Feel free to fork / PR the repo if you can get a faster speed. It would be really awesome to show 32 bit max int can be reached in 5 minutes or less. (Remember, no editing of configurations.)

AWS Lambda and automated testing (pt2).

Opps; forgot to circle back to this…

So we finally got it working. Local and Jenkins automated testing that couples with Lambda for media processing! What we ended up doing was creating an ssh tunnel from our DEV to UAT, from UAT to the remote DEV DB. O man was it slow. Like, slow enough we dumped it after 3 days. Do not recommend this type of setup if you can at all help it.

The next week this repo bust out on the scene; would have saved us a a lot of headache: Unfortunately we were past the point where it would have helped instead of hurt the engineering pipeline.

PSA: Do not use Codeception DB and Yii2 modules together…

…specifically the Yii2: ORM and DB module and transactions. The Yii2 $I->seeRecord() & related methods do NOT use the same connection ID as the DB module. So doing actions such as importing fixtures and executing actions via the ActiveRecord abstraction happen on the frameworks connection.

Trying, then, to do actions like $I->seeInDatabase() and related DB modules actions will fail, almost always. Why? The Db module uses a separate connection, as defined in the suite.yml (acceptance/functional/unit) files.

So, from here out I will not be using the two modules together. Either use Yii2+Fixtures or use the DB+dump.sql. Both, together, is problematic at best.

Another month, another set of continuing education courses.

A corner stone of the IT/Dev career field is this: ‘never stop learning’. I like to expand on it and include ‘When you stop learning, your start becoming worthless’. While some disagree with this it has served me well. As such last night my Udemy collection increased by another 8 courses. Mainly focused on AWS assoc. certification training but also a few container / CI / CD services.

Hoping to sit down for the exams before the end of the year; here’s hoping ^_^.

Sad day … Iron Yard Closing.

To me the whole coding school bootcamp has always seemed like land mind field waiting for a chain reaction detonation. That said The Iron Yard is one of the more well established and respectable institutions. and that makes is even more saddening when they announced recently they would be closing all campus locations. This action will obsessively cut off hundreds of thousands of field entering individuals from mentors, channels of community, new life opportunities, and much much more. I really hope another group / organization can grow from this unfortunate series of events to help continue to grow the development field.


The Iron Yard
2012 – 2017

A little slow recently…

…if you noticed a slow down in blogs do not fear; just been a little busy. The links section has gotten some attention though. Check that out.


Anyone else excited about headless chrome?

Did a thing today, ‘nother new package.

New Package: Stripe + CommandBus + Yii2

I got tired of writing out the entire Stripe class requirements coupled with the need to trigger stripe events from different areas of the application  motivated me to create this package. It is by far NOT production ready but lays the ground work and ideas for the package. Take a look, leave a comment, contribute.

Also have another one in the works that combines Google Chrome, Codeception, headless browser testing, and replacing PhantomJs (since the maintainers are deprecating the project).