Introducing Christine Heckart, Scalyr’s new CEO

It seems like just yesterday that I announced that Scalyr had raised Series A. It was a big step for the company. We’ve been pretty capital efficient, so we weren’t short on cash, but the opportunities in front of us were such that it made sense to take that step to accelerate our growth.

2018 was another big year for Scalyr. We grew our customer base to over 300 paying customers, an increase of more than 100%. Our team doubled last year and it needs to double again this year; we need more great engineers and more great salespeople that really understand developers and their needs.  And now we’re taking another big step to accelerate our growth: I’m thrilled to announce that Christine Heckart has joined Scalyr as our new Chief Executive Officer.

In case you’re just tuning in: the person Christine is replacing is me. As I told the team at the internal announcement, “this is an upgrade”. Scalyr is an amazing adventure, and it’s been a privilege for me to lead this team for the last 7 years. I’ve grown a lot as a person in the process. But Scalyr is growing faster. 🙂

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What Does a Site Reliability Engineer Do?

Although site reliability engineering has been around for a while, it has only recently gained fame in general software circles. But there are still a lot of questions as to what a site reliability engineer (SRE) does. Much of what we know comes from the book Site Reliability Engineering from Google. And we’ll refer to that book a few times in this post.

SREs have been compared to operations groups, system admins, and more. But the comparison falls short in encompassing their role in today’s modern software environment. They cover more responsibilities than operations. And though they usually have a background in system administration, they also bring software development skills to the role. SREs combine all these skills and ensure that complex distributed systems run smoothly.

So how do they do all this? Read further to find out how SREs accomplish this through the responsibilities they fulfill.

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An In-Depth Guide to Nginx Metrics

In our guides Zen and the Art of System Monitoring and How to Monitor Nginx: The Essential Guide, we cover our monitoring philosophy. We also recommend a specific set of metrics to monitor and alerts to set for maximum Nginx happiness.

Here, we’d like to dive into the nitty-gritty of those essential Nginx metrics. We’ll discuss what exactly they mean and why they’re important. This will also serve as a primer for some of the (perhaps esoteric) terminology associated with web servers.

You can think of this as a companion the official Nginx documentation and as an appendix to our Nginx monitoring guide.

For now, this guide covers only the metrics available via ngx_http_stub_status_module, plus those associated with the F/OSS version of Nginx. More comprehensive metrics are available atngx_http_status_module. (This is included with the commercial version, Nginx Plus.)

So roll up your sleeves, grab your Slanket or Snuggie, and let’s talk Nginx metrics.

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Introducing Scalyr Labs

We’re excited to announce Scalyr Labs, a way you can try out new and experimental features before they are released to production. Labs lets us share new functionality more quickly with you to get feedback earlier in the development process.  We are excited to give you the opportunity to be more actively involved in the direction of our product.

Features in Labs are far enough along where we expect them to work but would like your feedback to catch any missing functionality. In the unlikely event that they don’t work, they won’t cause any harm to your data or your account. You choose if you want to use them, which ones you want to use and easily turn labs features on or off at any time.  

The first features in Labs include some of the new features we mentioned in our Q4’18 product blog: Stack Trace Linking, Chart Annotations and Post Graph to Slack. We think all of these features will help improve collaboration among teams and streamline troubleshooting workflows.  We’re eager to release these to production so give them a try and let us know what you think!

Getting Started Quickly With Angular Logging

The previous articles in this series covered the basics of logging in C#, Java, Python, Ruby, Node.js, and JavaScript. In this article, I’ll show you how to quickly get started logging in one of the most popular front-end development frameworks: Angular.

“But wait!” you might be thinking. “Do you mean Angular or AngularJS?” I mean both. After a bit of Angular history, we’ll look at logging with AngularJS first, and then we’ll use the current Angular version to show you logging in action.

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Azure Functions Tutorial: Creating Your First Function

Azure Functions is the function-as-a-service (FaaS) offering from Azure—the equivalent of AWS Lambda from Amazon. FaaS is simply a platform to upload the application code, run, and manage the application without having to think about setting up any servers. You only pay for the time the application runs, and there’s also a free tier every month. Initially, a cup of coffee could be more expensive than running your function.

Today’s post is a tutorial on how to get started using Azure Functions. By the end of this post, you’ll be able to develop and run the app locally, then publish it to Azure to start using it. It’s going to be a straightforward app, but after you’ve finished the tutorial, you’ll be ready to create more complex applications.

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Spring Boot Microservices—Examples to Help You Get Started

It can feel daunting to build a new microservice. It feels like there are a lot of things to keep in mind. Fortunately, Spring has a variety of libraries that can get us started quickly. We can focus on the bits that matter to us and let Spring scaffold the rest. In this post, we’re going to take a look at what makes microservices different from other types of applications and how Spring helps us get up and running fast.

Spring Boot microservices with Scalyr colors
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Zen and the Art of System Monitoring

System monitoring is an essential but often-overlooked part of production software deployment. It’s as critical as security but rarely given the same attention.

By overlooked, we don’t necessarily mean ignored. Novice operations folks know that monitoring is needed, and most environments do have some basic alarms in place. Even if it’s just the sales department screaming “The website’s down!”—which can be effective, but perhaps not optimal.

There isn’t (yet) a standard methodology for monitoring, and there really ought to be.

So let’s change that.

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Container as a Service: What Devs Need to Understand

It seems that everything today ends up being provided as a service. From infrastructure as a service (IaaS) to platform as a service (PaaS), it’s easy to get lost in what each of these do. And one of the newest entrants to this arena is container as a service (CaaS). Even as developers, we tend to get lost in the hype when trying to decipher all these terms. So, what does CaaS offer that’s different? And what do we need to know about its offerings?

In this post, we’ll take a look at what CaaS is and what it provides. We’ll also look at some of the pieces that make up a CaaS.

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Kubernetes Tutorial: Learn the Basics and Get Started

It’s been over three years since Google open-sourced the Kubernetes project. Even so, you might still be wondering what Kubernetes is and how you can get started using it. Well, you’re in the right place! In this post, I’m going to explain the basics you need to know to get started with Kubernetes. And I won’t just be throwing concepts at you—I’ll give you real code examples that will help you get a better idea of why you might need to use Kubernetes if you’re thinking about using containers.

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