Pingdom Site Uptime and Performance Monitoring, now RUM

Pingdom.com is getting really good at their trade. For uptime and response time monitoring, Pingdom is a quick win for any size website. Does a great job, and Pingdom has racked up some big name customers, touted on their home page, like Microsoft, Dell, Disney, Google, Apple and many more. Everyone is using Pingdom, they have an easy to learn API so everything can be automated, the pricing is a great value, from 1 site to hundreds of sites. My only complaint is the lack of beacon out alerting. Email, SMS, Twitter, iOS, Android are adequate for a small shop with just a few folks on call, but what about the bigger shops? How about integration into Pager Duty? Pager Duty’s article explains how to do it, but it’s email based, which makes me cringe. That’s great that Page Duty has found a way to make it work, but I’d like to see Pingdom make a reverse API option, where they’ll call our API to relay the alert.

Read more

How to make rel author show picture in Google SERP Results

To make the image show up in your SERPs, here is what you do:

 

1. If you don’t already have one, go to the Google+ home page (plus.google.com), create a Google+ account.

 

2. In your Google+ account, Edit Profile, About, fill in the “Contributor to” sections.
Label: Whatever you want, for your eyes only (I think)
URL: http://www.yourdomain.tld/

Read more

Been Busy, Public Mentions

I have not been in to post any articles lately, because I have blog spawl and finding it hard to find time to attend to my personal blog. Most of my blog activity is on an intranet site inside the company, where I’m active on my personal blog and the Web Application Performance blog. I also now active on the public facing Inside GoDaddy.com blog.

Check out my first article in Inside GoDaddy.com, Avoid the Database Stampede.

Read more

Scalability Rules – Review

Just read the book, “Scalability Rules, 50 Principles for Scaling Web Sites” by Martin L. Abbott and Michael T. Fisher. I’d like to start out saying that having the opportunity to meet the authors of this book was an honor. I only wish that I had read the book before meeting them. I’m inspired by this book; the length of this blog post should be a testament to that.

 

The book was an easy read and spot on. You can read the whole book in one sitting, I did – one Sunday afternoon. Many times I marveled at how we’re all coming to the same realizations, at different companies. I’ve been living this through experience working at very fast growing Internet company with millions of customers, dozens of SaaS based services, and several data centers, some International. What I liked about this book was the affirmation of beliefs I share with those I work with. I could demonstrate example of nearly all of these rules across our array of online services. There were plenty of aha moments! This book is a great introduction to many (all the important ones?) advanced web application scalability topics. If you think you already know them all, think again. Give this book a read. If you’re already an advanced level web app architect, you’ll breeze over much of it, then get an eye-opening surprise or three.

 

I’d like to reinforce how much I enjoyed the affirmation of my own beliefs, and the eye openers. Never before have I seen all of these principles/rules/beliefs (whatever you want to call them) together in one easily reference-able book. I’m going to buy many copies of this and hand them out at work, with the instruction: We should all know these rules, inside and out, through our combined experiences, and this book sums them all up. This is a must have reference to have on the desk.

 

Scalability Rules is very modern, in that it discusses the very latest in large scale web application trends. These aren’t the principles from 2000 or 2005, this is culmination of all the latest, up to 2010 and 2011, trends. Seriously, back in 2005, this stuff hadn’t surfaced yet. Some of the horizontal scaling principles existed, but none of the more modern sharding, noSQL, page-cache, object-cache, CDN, and more had enough sustained experience for all of us to know if it’s all really worth the trouble. Very few sites in 2005 required much more than 2 or 3 web servers behind a load balancer and a database. I anticipated the growth that was about to happen, but it was hard to really know what it’s like until you live it.

 

Here are my brief comments on each of the rules:

Read more