Summary of my Octopus Deploy blog posts

Sorry I’ve not posted much here lately. Ever since the start of the pandemic I’ve devoted most of my writing energy to the Octopus Deploy blog. This post is intended to serve as a reference to all that content.

A little background: In February and March of 2020, the world woke up to the covid 19 pandemic. It was a scary, heartbreaking, and chaotic time for all of us. One thing we all needed to get used to pretty quickly was working from home.

Overnight, I cancelled all travel. I lost a couple of large contracts, either due to the travel cancellations, or the economic fall out. Fortunately, I fairly quickly found a couple of new contracts to plug the revenue gap.

I agreed to write one blog post a month for the great folks at Octopus Deploy. These blog posts gave me a modest but reliable revenue stream throughout the worst months of the pandemic. For this stability during uncertain times, I will forever be grateful to the great team at Octopus Deploy.

In particular, I enjoyed working with my editors: Lee Carlon (b|l|t) and Tegan Ali (l|t). Lee, Tegan: I really appreciated your thoughtful edits. I’m better at writing now. All of these posts were improved through your careful eyes for detail, genuine care, and excellent advice. Thank you.

Honestly, there’s a lot of content listed below. Here are a few suggestions about where to start:

DevOps primers:

My favourites:

  • Change Advisory Boards Don’t Work (July 2020), a fun rant.
  • On the naming of DevOps Engineers (Jan 2021), another fun rant.
  • Negotiating with the gatekeepers (August 2020), which taught me to fall in love with writing all over again
  • My entire Safe Schema Updates series (Most of 2021), which reinforced in me the significance of feature creep and small batch sizes. It also inspired me to never write a book.

This writing quest was a lot of fun, but over the next few months I hope to spend less time writing articles and more time writing code. With that in mind, I’m going to leave this enormous batch of content right here. Hopefully this should keep you going until I catch the writing bug all over again.

March 2020:
SQL Server deployment options for Octopus Deploy

April 2020:
Deploying SQL Server Security with dbatools and Octopus Deploy

May 2020:
Self-service database provisioning with Octopus Runbooks and Redgate SQL Clone

June 2020:
SQL Server and PowerShell made easier with dbatools: Practical examples

July 2020:
Change Advisory Boards Don’t Work

August 2020:
Negotiating with the gatekeepers

September 2020:
Taming the Kraken: How to protect your data

October 2020:
100x faster db deploys: Skipping unnecessary schema compares in tightly coupled systems

November / December 2020 (This was a big one!):
The DevOps reading list: Choosing your next DevOps book

January 2021:
On the naming of DevOps Engineers

February 2021:
How SpaceX obliterates its competitors and redefines space travel
[Redacted. It turns out I was wrong about a great many things.]

March 2021:
Safe schema updates, part 1: Database delivery hell

April 2021:
Safe schema updates, part 2: Resilient vs robust IT systems

May 2021:
Safe schema updates, part 3: Continuous Integration is misunderstood

June 2021:
Safe schema updates, part 4: Loose coupling mitigates tech problems

July 2021:
Safe schema updates, part 5: Loose coupling mitigates human problems

August 2021:
Safe schema updates, part 6: Provisioning dev/test databases

Spet 2021:
Safe schema updates, part 7: Near-zero downtime database deployments

October 2021:
Safe schema updates, part 8: Strangling the monolith

December 2021. (Published in April 2022):
DORA metrics – The predictive link between DevOps practice and business outcomes

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