For years the Jenkins project has published anonymous usage statistics to stats.jenkins.io. Despite its warts, the system has ultimately proven useful for determining which plugins are most frequently installed, big coarse-grained changes in growth, and providing various marketing departments with the validation they so desperately crave. Like many of the tucked away corners of the Jenkins project, being an infrastructure maintainer affords me an understanding of how the system works, and sometimes doesn’t. As I promised to the CDF Technical Oversight Committee many weeks ago, in this post I will attempt to describe how this system works.
Making changes safely to an application like Jenkins is incredibly tricky. Jenkins is distributed to hundreds of thousands of independently owned and operated servers and is used in a myriad of ways. Our changes with the best intentions, can still result in confounding bugs and errors for users with different configurations, or different combinations of plugins. Over on the Jenkins project blog, Daniel wrote about the first use of “telemetry” by Jenkins core, a project on which we collaborated. I ended up building the backend service for receiving this telemetry, Uplink, and I hope it paves the way for making smarter changes across Jenkins core in the future.
Today marks one month until the beginning of AIDS/LifeCyle 2019 (ALC)! Which means I am one month away from starting a bicycle journey with thousands of other riders from San Francisco to Los Angeles as part of our effort to raise money for AIDS/HIV related services. As of this writing, my fundraising is at $3,377 which is still short of my fundraising goal: $5,000. If you appreciate my work in the Jenkins project, the JRuby/Gradle project, or if you have enjoyed my sass on Twitter, please convert your appreciation into a donation to AIDS/LifeCYcle. :)
Continuous integration and continuous delivery (CI/CD) projects might just be one of the hardest to lock down and secure. As system designers and implementors we must enable developers to automate their builds, tests, and deployments. And yet, in doing so, we also give those same developers the ability to bypass many of the boundaries we may have set up to secure our environments. If you give me the ability to automate my deployment with a script, I can think of a number of ways in which that ability can lead to information disclosure or other types of breaches. Jenkins Pipeline is filled with any number of problematic examples here the same feature can be looked at as empowering or as compromising. I believe the immense flexibility of Jenkins Pipeline also gives us a path to provide automation which is inherently more secure than some competitors. In this post, I’ll outline one such idea: a pipeline secure enclave.
If you were to draw a coordinate system for software, where the x-axis was “important to use” and the y-axis was “enjoyable to use”, x509 certificates would be at the extreme edge of the bottom right of quadrant four. Much as I dislike them, they are absolutely critical to securing practically everything we do. As is the case with most companies, Scribd uses custom root certificates to establish a controlled chain of trust for internal resources. A sensible practice, but can be a great learning exercise, causing you to discover all the various ways in which trust is defined and managed in a modern development environment.
When waiting for containers to build, or dependencies to download, my mind tends to wander. Yesterday it wandered to the plight of new contributors to modern free and open source projects; how much they must do before even attempting to collaborate! I started a Twitter poll, asking:
Ever since I stumbled across this blog post on auto documented
I have been adding the author’s little snippet to every new
Makefile that I
The fire at Notre Dame is certainly unfortunate, but with President Macron having committed to rebuilding the famed cathedral, the destruction is in no way permanent. Restoring or building new architectural masterpieces is expensive and challenging, but it is definitely not impossible.
This past week a missed security update contributed to a compromise at Matrix.org. As I have said before, for purposes of infrastructure design, it is prudent to consider CI/CD tools like Jenkins as “remote code execution as a service.” In the Continuous Delivery world, I think we have a serious problem with user education around securely running CI/CD tools; anything which can touch production represents a potential liability.
“Enterprise Software Sales” is not something I ever imagined spending as much time considering as I have over the past four years, but life is full of surprises isn’t it? At my previous gig we had changed our pricing model at least once during my time, and I learned quite a bit from the trade-off discussions which were had. Now sitting on the other side of the table, I get to enjoy a different perspective on the same underlying problem: how should enterprise software be priced? The question is important to answer, not just from a business perspective, but from a user perspective; the pricing model determines how your software will be adopted and used.