From MySQL+MMM to MariaDB+Galera Cluster: A High Availability Makeover

By Derek Bullet_white Posted in Development Bullet_white Comments Comments

Kevin Lawver, President @ Rails Machine, is our guest author for this post.

Few things feel worst than rolling out a High Availability (HA) system, then regularly seeing that system collapse. For our team at Rails Machine, that failing HA system was MySQL Multi-Master Replication Manager (MMM).

We've been searching for a MMM replacement for a while, and a few months ago, we made the switch to MariaDB + Galera Cluster for High Availability MySQL.

What's wrong with MySQL MMM? What's special about Galera Cluster? Read on!

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Environments

By Andre Bullet_white Posted in Features Bullet_white Comments Comments

With the introduction of server roles, we made it easier to manage large setups. Most Scout customers have multiple servers of each type (example: app1, app2, app3), and roles have been a big hit:

72%
of new accounts use roles

But, we got some feedback

You said you needed flexibility on alerts, even when servers are in the same role. An application server in staging has different alerting needs than an application server in production.

Introducing environments

Now you can assign environments to your servers in Scout, and manage notifications accordingly:

  • create any number of environments (production, development, etc).
  • apply roles across environments. For example, production and staging servers can both be part of your "database" role.
  • customize notification settings by environment
  • filter your account homepage by environment. You'll see only the servers you want to see, with less noise.

Here's an example of a trigger with notification groups customized by environment:

Get Started

First, select Environments from the account menu, and create one or more environments.

Next, specify an environment with the agent's -e parameter on your server. You'll need the Scout agent version of at least 5.7.0 to use environments.

Don't need environments yet? They'll stay out of your way

If you're using Scout in only one environment, the new feature won't add any complexity. You'll only see the new settings after you've added multiple environments via the account menu.

Learn more

Read up on environments in our docs.

 

Docker: Git for deployment

By Derek Bullet_white Posted in Development Bullet_white Comments Comments

I've been hearing how Docker is the new awesome, but it didn't click for me until I dug in with a practical question: if we deployed Scout via Docker, would deployment be a more pleasurable experience?

My three takeaways are below.

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Scout Puppet Module and PuppetConf

By Derek Bullet_white Posted in Features Bullet_white Comments Comments

Just in time for PuppetConf 2013, we've added an official Scout Puppet Module to Puppet Forge. Configuration instructions are right there in the Scout UI:

We're also excited to be a sponsor for PuppetConf - if you'll be attending, drop us a note. We'd love to meetup and talk all things Puppet and monitoring!

 

Understanding CPU Steal Time - when should you be worried?

By Derek Bullet_white Posted in HowTo Bullet_white Comments Comments

A big thanks to Eric Lindvall of Papertrail for adding steal time to Scout's CPU Usage Plugin and helping out on this blog post!

Netflix tracks CPU Steal Time closely. In fact, if steal time exceeds their chosen threshold, they shut down the virtual machine and restart on a different physical server.

If you deploy to a virtualized environment (for example, Amazon EC2), steal time is a metric you'll want to watch. If this number is high, performance can suffer significantly. What is steal time? What causes high steal time? When should you be worried (and what should you do)?

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Introducing Chart Queries

By Derek Bullet_white Posted in Features Bullet_white Comments Comments

Today we're excited to announce the BETA release of Chart Queries, a faster way to view your metrics on charts.

Rather than selecting metrics via checkboxes, just search!

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