Chef, Kubernetes and Meetups

Yesterday I went to my second ever Meetup.

For those who don’t know what they are, a Meetup group that you join based on preferences, you join a local community of people. Meetup groups are sustained through Meetup events, which are face-to-face gatherings that happen in real life between members and organizers. The DevOps event I went to yesterday was sponsored by Chef. They had a speaker in Simon Fish talking through Chef and their new product Habitat as well as Gutav Maskowitz, from Google talking through Kubernetes.

Meetups are a great way of meeting people in your field, understanding where a current technology or field is going, and seeing if it’s of relevance to you, if you’ve never been, i’d highly recommend it.

So let’s go through what was mentioned and what it means to us, most things are linked to their relevant pages, so if anything takes your interest make sure to  click through and carry on discovering these great tools.



Chef and it’s “Automate” range gives you a full-stack continuous deployment pipeline, automated testing for compliance and security, and visibility into everything that’s happening along the way.

It builds on Chef for infrastructure automation, InSpec for compliance automation and Habitat for application automation. You can transform your company into a highly collaborative, software-driven organization with Chef Automate as the engine. The rest of the “Automate” range is listed below.

Image result for inspec logo chef


Automated testing is a massive part of developing and deploying software. A product that requires less time testing can have more time spent on the fundementals of the product and adding new and enhanced features. InSpec is a tool from Chef to help you with these aims. It’s an open source test framework in a easily read format to deal with compliance and security of your software, making sure it adheres to all your requirements and policies that may required of it.

As mentioned the tests are meant to be easily readable (An example below). This seems to be the norm for most testing nowadays, the Gherkinuesque/Cucumber/Specflow style of syntax is the type of automated tests that can be run during the build or deploy phase to give reassurance that the sotfware you are shipping is up to scratch. Inspec follows a pattern to have understandable, declarative and unambiguous tests, which makes sure each test follows a specific pattern and does a specific job.


Image result for habitat logo chef


So Habitat is a suite to Build, Deploy and Manage your application. Benefits include allowing you to install and run it anywhere. Below is the announcement video that goes into a lot of detail into this open source project.

Application delivery has to go through many layers in an organisation, from the Software team, Operations and Infrastructure. Having all of these centralize, working together, and importantly not in a head down angle but rather in dynamic topologies, is a much more efficient measure of your time.


Image result for kubernetes logo


For Kubernetes, it’s sounds pretty awesome, but rather than try and go through the details there is this great video that goes through the basics a lot clearer than I could! One thing to note, Kubernetes currently only supports Linux operating systems, unfortunately us Windows based developers won’t be able to use this at the moment, you never know what will happen in the future though.

This user guide is great, going through all the main talking points and describing them all in a lot more detail!

The basics:

Pods – a small group of docker containers that work together, these are the smallest units that can be managed by Kubernetes.

Replication Controllers – These ensure that the specified number of pods are running at any one time, and as such will add or remove pods when required.

Services – These are a set of pods that do a job.

Labels – These are used to group object based on their key:value pairs.  Like “Access: Full” & “Access: None”

Hope some of this was useful to you. It’s great going to a meetup and finding new and exciting things to look into and understand. As a number of people mentioned, there’s no point in re-inventing the wheel, unless you’re Goodyear that is! It better to let build upon tried and tested foundations and learn from peoples findings and mistakes…

Let me know what you think below the fold.

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