# a big hand for rfe

Here are some tools that I’ve put together that make a huge difference to a clunky rfe workflow. Bored already? Don’t worry, I’ve written the script already: tl;dr

Imagine power cycling a DICE server with redundant PSUs, using our lovely power bar control files. You don’t know where it’s installed, so you have to search for it. Continue reading

# get on the rpm bus

This is a quickie script which streamlines my RPM building and submission to a single command. Note that this is entirely dependent on our shiny new Package Forge system, which feeds RPMs to multiple platforms for building and eventual submission into our RPM buckets.

All it does is chain up “rpmbuild -bs [spec]; pkgforge submit [srpm]” but it’s a nice timesaver nonetheless. Side-benefits include the automatic generation of a readable ID and provision of a tracking link for pkgforge so that you can anxiously refresh the page to watch the build progress (or you could just wait for the report email…).

So, here is is; my very simple and stupid RPM automation. Suggested name: ‘rpmbus’.

#!/bin/bash
if [[ -z $2 ]]; then echo "RPMbus: build -> submit assist" echo "Usage: basename$0   [pkgforge args]"
exit 1
fi
bucket=$1; shift spec=$1; shift
args=$* output=rpmbuild -bs${spec} | tail -n 1
pkg=echo ${output} | sed -e 's_^Wrote: __' if [[ ! -e${pkg} ]]; then
echo "Package wasn't built: ${output}" exit 1 fi id=basename${spec} | sed -e 's_\.spec__' -e 's_\.__g'-date +"%s"
echo -e "Found source package:\n  ${pkg}" echo " Extra args:${args:-none}"

read -p "Submit to '${bucket}'?" foo if [[${foo} != 'y' ]]; then
echo "Cancelled"
exit 1
fi

echo "Submitting to ${bucket}..." pkgforge submit --id${id} -B ${bucket}${args} ${pkg} && \ echo " https://pkgforge.inf.ed.ac.uk/job/view?id=${id}"

Caveats: well, they’re numerous and they’re pretty apparent. But it took five minutes to write and it WFM :)

# Nag nag nag nag nagios

Nagios is an extremely useful tool, until it isn’t.  Which is to say, it’s nothing but a hindrance to have nagios continue to bombard you with IMs and emails when you’re already working on the problem.

### Surely you can just acknowledge the fault and shut it up…?

Well, sometimes, but it is hardly convenient to break out a Firefox session when you’re attached to a serial console with your lovely secure-shell-enabled phone.  And even if you are on a DICE machine it’s a bit of a pain to have to navigate the slightly clunky Nagios UI to find the host and service you wish to silence.

I started with a dumb bash script. Continue reading

# homing pidgin

Just another bit of shell glue which took about twenty minutes but yielded lovely results as it occurred to me that the DICE-wide inventory tools can now locate (at least in theory) any machine.

Being able to find out what office I’m in is more useful a feature than you might think.  Primary of those is the ability to advertise my whereabouts to colleagues, for example on entering a server room, in case I can be of button-pushing assistance to others.  Whenever I move around, I make an effort to update my Jabber status to point this out.

In fact, the glue was very straightforward and I learned about a particularly useful new tool: the Python DBUS libraries.  DBUS is the message bus adopted by most modern “freedesktop”-compatible environments, and the Python library provides a quick and easy way onto the bus.

First, I hacked together a tiny script to establish where I am. Continue reading