On leadership vs management

This post is a flight of ideas. Blame Charity getting my brain going This morning, I came to twitter to find this thread of tweets from the always awesome Charity majors. This got me thinking about how it seems many poeple in our field, and so many companies by consequence,…

Chef audit mode

I have spoken before about how important it is for me and my team to make as many parts of the database stack match our larger infrastructure. One of the most crucial ways to do this is to make sure that not only are we deploying and managing databases using…

On being on call

In case you don't follow SysAdvent (in which case, why?? you are missing out on great content every year!), the post on December 6th this year was by Alice Goldfuss. I have tweeted a link to that post that day and since then my tweet has been quoted, responded to…

Capacity planning for databases

Note: This is inspired by Julia Evans' recent post about ....capacity planning 😌 Ground rules RDBMS Yes..this post is geared for those of us who use MySQL with a single writer at a time and 2 or more read replicas. A lot of what I will talk about here applies…

2015 in review...2016 here I come

This post is inspired by quite a few great posts like this one by Ryn Daniels and Lara Hogan 2015 was a year of lots of changes and lots of growing for me, both professionally and personally. It also had a lot of firsts for me. Going remote Late in…

Using Sensu for DBA tasks

Sensu for monitoring Here at Sendgrid we spent the last couple of years porting a lot of our service and host monitoring to Sensu. Its solid API support meant we could write all sorts of tooling around it. We also liked the idea of standalone, client side checks that push…

On Burnout

The not-so-merry go round There is a lot of talk these days about burnout in our field. A lot of great initiatives to get us tech people to not hide it, not sweep it under the rug. This is a great start for a more honest conversation about the stresses…

Alfred, csshx and terminalception

Alfred, csshx and terminalception I use Tmux usually but Tmux on the mac has not been playing nice with csshx for me. Something in the dark magic of perl broke with an error that looks like this Mar 5 08:58:42 silvias-MacBookPro.local perl[10828] : ImageIO: CGImageDestinationFinalize image destination…

Learning configuration management as a DBA

How it's been Before SendGrid, I used to deploy all my databases by hand. I'd have a documentation page (a google doc, internal wiki page...whatever). And it would be a long bulleted list of "Install this, then install this". If you have ever maintained 'How to' documents like that,…

Scaling MySQL at SendGrid

*Note: This post first appeared at Sendgrid's official blog * SendGrid is the epitome of catching a tiger by the tail. Our systems were not originally designed to handle the massive scale we deal with today. Adding new features at this scale also presents challenges budding companies don’t yet need…