As Linux administrators, we generally host a range of multi-purpose scripts that are designed for the purposes of duct-taping the infrastructure together. Nobody else in the organization knows how/when/where 95% of these scripts are run and on what interval — it’s a great tactic for job security. Inevitably, we’re going to get a request at some point (and most of us already have, that’s for sure) to have a script watch one folder on a server for a file to appear, and then move it somewhere else (usually with some data or filename massaging in the process). So, all of us have our own variation of this “move-file” script… Continue reading »

On to something more interesting…

We use VMware ESX 3.5 for our virtualization solution, and I was tasked with finding a way to automate monitoring CPU/MEM usage for ESX guests. We use VirtualCenter to manage and maintain all of our VMs, and we use a Network Monitoring solution to monitor all of the devices in our infrastructure. Relying on the VMware guest to provide accurate performance data has proven unreliable in the past, but the performance data that VirtualCenter provides is reliable and is what we wanted to monitor from our centralized solution. Continue reading »

Just this past week, I was given a programming task to take a Microsoft Word template, which had been saved as an XML file (Word Markup-Language format), and auto-populate all of the bookmarks in the document with dynamic data from a database. The purpose of this task was to take the name of the bookmark (for example, “FirstNameLastName”) and populate only that field with the database data, leaving the other data untouched and untransformed. This will allow an end user to manage the static data and formatting of the document, without programming intervention. Therefore, we can have one person from each department in charge of modifying the legal wording, or wording to customers, and not have to have programming create a new document template for every change. Continue reading »

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