Ansible for DevOps book review

I was given this book, which is an uncommon event for me as I usually buy all books by myself. Moreover, I was given a paper version of the book.

Therefore, there were absolutely no regrets regarding this book =) The book is concise and covers almost all parts of Ansible I’ve ever heard of. The only exception was the case when you need to deal with a server that’s under a jump host/bastion, which is very common for cloud deployments as they usually are done in a VPC network of some kind that not exposed to the outer world.

This book has plenty of handful examples, but the most useful thing in it were not them.  The book covers some of the most undervalued parts of the Ansible ecosystem: Ansible Galaxy, Tower and it also has a decent set of invaluable pattern and best practices for writing your playbooks.

My score: 5/5, I’m not sure if you need to read anything more than this book if you plan to use Ansible professionally.


Puppet Essentials book review

The book provides only a shallow knowledge of Puppet, doesn’t cover some of the most important modules you’ll need in the real world as well as it doesn’t provide practical examples.

I will recommend it only if you need to quickly brush up the technical details of Puppet’s architecture or you need to start using it quickly rather than spending some time on playing with examples its documentation provides

My score: 3/5

One of my favorite quotes drawn as a comic

Decide in your heart of hearts what really excites and challenges you, and start moving your life in that direction. Every decision you make, from what you eat to what you do with your time tonight, turns you into who you are tomorrow, and the day after that. Look at who you want to be, and start sculpting yourself into that person. You may not get exactly where you thought you’d be, but you will be doing things that suit you in a profession you believe in. Don’t let life randomly kick you into the adult you don’t want to become.”

Chris Hadfield, the first Canadian office on board of ISS

Mesos in Action book review

I can recommend this book only to those who’s looking for a very shallow knowledge of Mesos. It covers only the basics, no details, no iternal APIs, a lot of references to the Mesos documentation.

It’s worth reading if you need to quickly refresh your knowledge, besides that it’s worthless. It recommends to do Service discovery within the Mesos cluster by means of HAProxy & Mesos-DNS!!!

My score 3/5, RTFM

SRE book review

I don’t normally buy paper books, which means that in the course of the last few years I’ve bought only one paper book even though I’ve read hundreds of books during that period of time. This book is the second one I’ve bought so far, which means a lot to me. Not mentioning that Google is providing it on the Internet free of charge.

For me, personally, this book is a basis on which a lot of my past assumptions could be argued as viable solutions with the scale of Google. This book is not revealing any Google’s secrets (do they really have any secrets?) But it’s a great start even if you don’t need the scale of Google but want to write robust and failure-resilient apps.

Technical solutions, dealing with the user facing issues, finding peers, on-call support, post-mortems, incident-tracking systems – this book has it all though, as chapters have been written by different people some aspects are more emphasized than the others. I wish some of the chapters had more gory production-based details than they do now.

My score is 5/5

How Linux Works book review

This book doesn’t claim to cover all Linux features, but definitely it covers some of the most important ones.

It’s easy to read, though it encompasses lots of useful information. I wish my first Linux book was like that.

The only complaint I had with it was that though its second edition has been recently issued and it wasn’t strictly specified on which Linux distribution should I run some of the commands from the book  I wasn’t able to try some of them due to that there were no such packages in the APT repository for reference Ubuntu Docker image I’ve been using.

This is definitely not a book I would recommend to a SysOps, unless he needs to quickly brush-up his skills. But if you’re a “superuser”, that’s the book you should definitely read to know what’s “inode” any why top&vmstat&iotop might be much more powerful than you’ve thought.

My score 4/5

Plans for 2017


  • Brush up (most probably by starting from the basics) my German language skills
  • Start tracking expenses, again
  • Pass a Polish language exam
  • Teach Kira how to ride a bicycle, finally
  • Run a marathon
  • Play 2 etudes with Kira
  • Draw a vector banner
  • Read 20 books


  • Learn Python
  • Learn either Rust or Go, presumably both
  • Improve my data skills, implement at least 2 data-concerned apps as side projects
  • Migrate this website to Jekyll
  • Teach my wife a programming language that has a lean learning curve to the level at which she could write her own scripts
  • Improve my TopCoder/HackerRank profile, finish reading at least 2 algorithms-related books throughout the year