I tried to continue following it since I left Sanmina. ZFS is really an amazing Software and it’s lead by an amazing Community of super cool Engineers and companies. I would like to continue contributing ASAP.
I bought some new hard drives in order to work a bit on this. You don’t need to have dedicated hardware if you want to test features. You can run in a VirtualBox or VMWare Workstation.
I received more books about DevOps and Python
None is perfect. I see flaws in all of them and bad architecture practices*, however from all I learn interesting things.
You know, I study every day. At least 30 minutes, after work. As part of my healthy routines.
But I also study and learn during the work, as we have time available for this.
I’m very fortunate that Blizzard gives me time every day to study. That’s amazing. They also send us to events paying the ticket, travel, hotel, expenses… now with covid-19 we only go to virtual events, but the company still pay for this and give free days. Is a very nice company.
I continue having purchases of my book, and I’m very happy about that. I’m working on improving it and providing more contents and samples going from the scratch, with step by step code samples. From spaghetti code reading CSV files, to OOP with Full Coverage.
My application for a Higher degree Computer Science Cloud Computing (Level 8) has been accepted. The Irish government pays me 90% of the degree, and Blizzard will pay me the other 10% after I pass the first year course.
I’m really grateful to this beautiful country, Ireland.
Having an Irish degree is something that brings me an special illusion.
I have updated CTOP.py with some interesting features
It allows to pass a fixed width and height for the terminal render. That’s very useful when you run CTOP in a Docker non interactive session, or from a Cron, with the –iterations=1 so the output can be captured programmatically.
Jetbrains has provided me with a Free License of all their products, in order to support my work in Open Source projects. That’s very nice. I’m using now mainly PyCharm and PhpStorm.
At the beginning of the covid-19 I wrote a simulator in Python. That’s why I was able to anticipate that the number of cases and deaths would be very much higher when nobody around me knew what was going to happen. My first simulations were simple, and the algorithms were growing in complexity until I had a full rich Object Oriented modeler. Maybe I’ll write an article about this someday.
After doing a Masterclass to some colleagues about Refactor, Code Reliability, Quality, The non-happy path and Unit Testing, I’m preparing some contents that I’ll publish to the Community soon. So far I created this repo, where I added the source code for lesson 0: starting to program in Python videos that I created few months ago to help beginners.
I also added some contents to lesson 1, where we refactor pure spaghetti code with no error control, to something more elaborated with unit testing and full code coverage. Still procedural, but I will jump to next class in two weeks, where we will move to OOP and Dependency Injection.
If you are using Git Submodules, is very probable that at some point you will create you own libraries. Probably those libraries will have their own structure, even with their own tests/ folder and you’re adding into a subfolder into your new project and maybe you have problems using relative imports.
This is a trick you can use to add the relevant root folder of your project to the System Path, so the libraries are found, specially when you call by command line from anywhere in the filesystem. This works for Python2 and Python3.
s_path_program = os.path.dirname(__file__)
sys.path.append(s_path_program + '../../')
from clib.src.argsutils import ArgsUtils
from clib.src.datetimeutils import DateTimeUtils
from clib.src.fileutils import FileUtils
I wanted to automate certain operations that we do very often, and so I decided to do a PoC of how handy will it be to create GUI applications that can automate tasks.
As locating information in several repositories of information (ldap, databases, websites, etc…) can be tedious I decided to create a small program that queries LDAP for the information I’m interested, in this case a Location. This small program can very easily escalated to launch the VPN, to query a Database after querying LDAP if no results are found, etc…
I share with you the basic application as you may find interesting to create GUI applications in Python, compatible with Windows, Linux and Mac.
I’m super Linux fan but this is important, as many multinationals still use Windows or Mac even for Engineers and SRE positions.
With the article I provide a Dockerfile and a docker-compose.yml file that will launch an OpenLDAP Docker Container preloaded with very basic information and a PHPLDAPMIN Container.
This is a trick to restart a Service that is running on a immutable Docker, with some change, and you need to refresh the values very quickly without having to roll the CI/CD Jenkins Pipeline and uploading a new image.
So why would you need to do that?.
I can think about possible scenarios like:
Need to roll out an urgent fix in a time critical manner
Jenkins is broken
Somebody screw it on the git master branch
Docker Hub is down
GitHub is down
Your artifactory is down
The lines between your jumpbox or workstation and the secure Server are down and you have really few bandwidth
You have to fix something critical and you only have a phone with you and SSH only
Maybe the Dockerfile had latest, and the latest image has changed
The ideal is that if you work with immutable images, you roll out a new immutable image and that’s it.
But if for whatever reason you need to update this super fast, this trick may become really handy.
Let’s go for it!.
Normally you’ll start your container with a command similar to this:
docker run -d --rm -p 5000:5000 api_carlesmateo_com:v7 prod
The first thing we have to do is to stop the container.
Locate your container across the list of running containers and stop it, and then restart without the –rm:
docker stop container_name
docker run -d -p 5000:5000 api_carlesmateo_com:v7 prod
the –rm makes the container to cleanup. By default a container’s file system persists even after the container exits. So don’t start it with –rm.
Ok, so login to the container:
docker exec -it container_name /bin/sh
Edit the config you require to change, for example config.yml
If what you have to update is a password, and is encoded in base64, encode it:
echo -n "ThePassword" | base64
Stop the container. You can do it by stopping the container with docker stop or from inside the container, killing the listening process, probably a Python Flask.
If your Dockerfile ends with something like:
And webservice.py has Python Flask code similar to this:
# Author: Carles Mateo
# Creation Date: 2020-05-10 20:50 GMT+1
# Description: A simple Flask Web Application
# Part of the samples of https://leanpub.com/pythoncombatguide
# More source code for the book at https://gitlab.com/carles.mateo/python_combat_guide
from flask import Flask, request
# Initialize Flask
app = Flask(__name__)
# Sample route so http://127.0.0.1/carles
logging.critical("A connection was established")
if __name__ == "__main__":
app.run(host='0.0.0.0', port=5000, debug=True)
Then you can kill the process, and so ending the container, from inside the container by doing:
After some work reviewing it and ensuring it has the expected quality, I finally published my book Python Combat Guide.
Is an atypical creation. Is more a Master Class to my best friend, it could be a SDM, TL leading a small Software Development department, a Coder or a Scientist wanting to join IT as programmer and to learn a lot of stuff very quickly, than rather a formal Python Book for learning. Absolutely is not for beginners.
If you want to buy it, to explore the TOC, extended description…
Please note: Even if I tried to make it easy, probably there are too many concepts for a non-programmer. Will try to deliver more basic previous knowledge and foundations, so people with zero knowledge don’t feel overwhelmed.
Start by installing Python 3.8 or 3.9 in your computer, and the IDE PyCharm. Install also Git, and create an account in GitLab so you can share code with other people and understand how Git works.
Ok, so you can take a look at my video, and hopefully it makes spark your motivation to learn by yourself. :)
I’ve been asked why I used print(“”) instead of print().
Is a good question. The reason is, when we programmed in Python 2.x the native way was to print without parenthesis, like:
print "Hello World!"
Python 3.x was incompatible with that and requires to use parenthesis, like:
Fortunately Python 2.x accepts also to print using parenthesis. In order to have compatibility within Python 2.x and Python 3.x or for future compatibility we were using always print(“Whatever”) in Python2.
However, there is one difference.
If you user print() or print(“”) in Python3 that will generate an empty line.
In Python 2 print(“”) will generate too an empty line, nevertheless print() in Python2 will print two parenthesis. We don’t want that.
This is illustrated in this screenshot:
So all the people that are at home, closed down for coronavirus, you have a chance now to start learning Python and from there get a live as programmer.
You can download the code for this lesson 0, from:
In order to be able to do more samples, and then being a bit interesting an dynamic, I will introduce here how to get data inputted by the Keyboard.
print("Please enter your name:")
s_name = input()
This will add whatever we type, without the final Enter, to the String variable s_name.
Capturing numbers from Keyboard
How we do to capture a number, like how old are you, in years?.
The same way, and then we convert this to an Integer value. An Integer is a data type which is basically a number, not decimal. Like: 1, 2, 7, 1000 o -5.
print("Please enter your name:")
s_name = input()
print("Please enter your age:")
s_age = input()
# With int() we convert a String to an Integer, as long as it is possible.
# Wit str() we convert a Integer to a String, as long as it is possible.
i_age = int(s_age)
If you enter a number incorrectly and so that cannot be converted, you will get an Exception Error. That is something that happened in a way that was not expected. These error can be trapped, and we will see this later, in the future.
How to capture data from the keyboard with input()
How to convert data entered as String to Integer with int()
How to sum two numbers, like 2 + 3
How to subtract two numbers, like 2 – 3
How to multiply, like 2 * 3
So know, you should be able to solve a basic arithmetic exercise in Hacker Rank:
I’m teaching Unit Testing, Refactors, Quality Code and moving from Procedural to OOP to some colleagues, you can find source code for our classes here (please, be aware that there are some error made on purpose to show why and why not do things and hot to apply proper unit testing)
First you have to understand that Python, Java and PHP are worlds completely different.
In Python you’ll probably use Flask, and listen to the port you want, inside Docker Container.
In PHP you’ll use a Frameworks like Laravel, or Symfony, or Catalonia Framework (my Framework) :) and a repo or many (as the idea is that the change in one microservice cannot break another it is recommended to have one git repo per Service) and split the requests with the API Gateway and Filters (so /billing/ goes to the right path in the right Server, is like rewriting URLs). You’ll rely in Software to split your microservices. Usually you’ll use Docker, but you have to add a Web Server and any other tools, as the source code is not packet with a Web Server and other Dependencies like it is in Java Spring Boot.
In Java you’ll use Spring Cloud and Spring Boot, and every Service will be auto-contained in its own JAR file, that includes Apache Tomcat and all other Dependencies and normally running inside a Docker. Tcp/Ip listening port will be set at start via command line, or through environment. You’ll have many git repositories, one per each Service.
Using many repos, one per Service, also allows to deploy only that repository and to have better security, with independent deployment tokens.
It is not unlikely that you’ll use one language for some of your Services and another for other, as well as a Database or another, as each Service is owner of their data.
In any case, you will be using CI/CD and your pipeline will be something like this:
Pull the latest code for the Service from the git repository
Compile the code (if needed)
Run the Unit and Integration Tests
Compile the service to an executable artifact (f.e. Java JAR with Tomcat server and other dependencies)
Generate a Machine image with your JAR deployed (for Java. Look at Spotify Docker Plugin to Docker build from Maven), or with Apache, PHP, other dependencies, and the code. Normally will be a Docker image. This image will be immutable. You will probably use Dockerhub.
Machine image will be started. Platform test are run.
If platform tests pass, the service is promoted to the next environment (for example Dev -> Test -> PreProd -> Prod), the exact same machine is started in the next environment and platform tests are repeated.
If you work with Microsoft .NET, you’ll probably use Azure DevOps.
We IT Engineers, CTOs and Architects, serve the Business. We have to develop the most flexible approaches and enabling the business to release as fast as their need.
Take in count that Microservices is a tool, a pattern. We will use it to bring more flexibility and speed developing, resilience of the services, and speed and independence deploying. However this comes at a cost of complexity.
Microservices is more related to giving flexibility to the Business, and developing according to the Business Domains. Normally oriented to suite an API. If you have an API that is consumed by third party you will have things like independence of Services (if one is down the others will still function), gradual degradation, being able to scale the Services that have more load only, being able to deploy a new version of a Service which is independent of the rest of the Services, etc… the complexity in the technical solution comes from all this resilience, and flexibility.
If your Dev Team is up to 10 Developers or you are writing just a CRUD Web Application, a PoC, or you are an Startup with a critical Time to Market you probably you will not want to use Microservices approach. Is like killing flies with laser cannons. You can use typical Web services approach, do everything in one single Https request, have transactions, a single Database, etc…
But if your team is 100 Developer, like a big eCommerce, you’ll have multiple Teams between 5 and 10 Developers per Business Domain, and you need independence of each Service, having less interdependence. Each Service will own their own Data. That is normally around 5 to 7 tables. Each Service will serve a Business Domain. You’ll benefit from having different technologies for the different needs, however be careful to avoid having Teams with different knowledge that can have hardly rotation and difficult to continue projects when the only 2 or 3 Devs that know that technology leave. Typical benefit scenarios can be having MySql for the Billing Services, but having NoSQL Database for the image catalog, or to store logs of account activity. With Microservices, some services will be calling other Services, often asynchronously, using Queues or Streams, you’ll have Callbacks, Databases for reading, you’ll probably want to have gradual and gracefully failure of your applications, client load balancing, caches and read only databases/in-memory databases… This complexity is in order to protect one Service from the failure of others and to bring it the necessary speed under heavy load.
Here you can find a PDF Document of the typical resources I use for Microservice Projects.
If you see the Official Python3 documentation for strip(), it says that strip without parameters will return the string without the leading and trailing white spaces.
Optionally you can pass a string with the characters you want to eliminate.
The official documentation for Python 2 says:
Return a copy of the string with leading and trailing characters removed. If chars is omitted or None, whitespace characters are removed. If given and not None, chars must be a string; the characters in the string will be stripped from the both ends of the string this method is called on.
Changed in version 2.2.3: The chars parameter was added. The chars parameter cannot be passed in earlier 2.2 versions.
A white space is a white space. Is not an Enter.
But strip() without parameters will remove white spaces (space), and Enter \n and Tabs \t.
Probably you will not realize that unless you read from a file that has empty lines at the end for a reason, and you use strip().
You can see a demonstration following this small program, that runs the same for Python2 and Python3.
And the corresponding output for python2 and python3:
The [ ] characters where added to show that there are no hidden tabs or similar after.
Here I paste the code so you can try yourself:
print("[" + s_test + "]")
s_string_with_enters = " Testing strip not only removing white spaces, but Enter and Tabs s well\n\t\n\n"
print("You are running Python " + sys.version)
print("This is the original string")
print("Now after strip()...")
print("As you can see the Enters and the Tabs have been removed, not just the spaced")
I think this should be disambiguate so I decided to take action. Is very easy to blame and never contribute. Not me. I went to Python to fix that and I located a bug reporting this issue:
So all those characters will be stripped in Python2.7 if you use just string.strip()
The ticket was opened the 2015-10-18 12:15. So it’s a shame the documentation has not been updated yet, more than 3 years later. Those are the kind of things, lack of care, that I can’t understand. Not looking for the excellence.
Please, do note that Python3 supports Unicode natively and things are always a bit different than with Python2 and AscII.
I lead a project where I decided to go with Python 2.7, for the wide compatibility across all the Servers around.
With RHEL now supporting Python 3 as well, it doesn’t make much sense any more, as all the major brands do support Python 3 directly.
I saw it coming so in my Coding Style Guide for my Team I explained that we will use print(“”) which is the required way to proceed with Python 3, as opposite to print “whatever” from Python 2. Noye Python 2 supports both methods.
But today something unexpected appeared in the Tests. One line of code was making a print of ().
The line of code was:
And the curiosity is that if you do print() in Python 2.7 it outputs ().