Review - Release It!

[[1069827.jpg]]]] Release It!: Design and Deploy Production-Ready Software by Michael Nygard My rating: 5 of 5 stars I need to start by saying that this is one of the best technical books I have ever read. To me, it's easily as enjoyable and useful as Code Complete, The Pragmatic Programmer, or The Mythical Man Month. If you're a sysadmin, an architect, or a developer that works with medium-to-large-sized systems, then do the following: 1. Stop reading this 2. Order this book from your library or buy it from The Pragmatic Programmer's web site 3. Owe me a pint :D

What The Book Is Really About Actually, there is one thing that I don't like about this book, but it really has nothing to do with the book. The description of this book on the Pragmatic Programmer's web site sucks. It's vague, and it really gives the potential reader a tiny amount of insight into the book's contents. What it should have said is that this book contains tons of great information on designing, deploying, maintaining and improving medium-to-large-sized IT systems. It's filled with patterns, anti-patterns, and general best practices that should be part of the shared lexicon of every developer, administrator, and system architect. Also, it does a good job of giving you enough information to be useful without boring you to death. And finally, it's written very well and is a joy to read. The Highlights Thread Dumps & Garbage Collection Tuning The internals of the Java Virtual Machine (JVM) have been a black box to me for the majority of my career in IT. Thankfully, this book has provided excellent examples of how you can troubleshoot and improve your system using tools that interrogate and manipulate a JVM at runtime. For me, this was the most interesting and useful part of the book, and I am looking forward to seeing what can be gained by tuning and "poking at" the JVM's that are in the system that I maintain. Patterns and Anti-Patterns It's great to finally find a book that codifies some patterns that administrators and architects can use. Transparency I thought that I new a lot about monitoring and transparency before reading this book, but now I know better. I especially like the concept of a unified "OpsDB", and I am eager to build something like this myself for the system that I maintain. Integration Point Risks I always knew that integration points (e.g. data feeds, databases, LDAP providers, etc.) added risk to you system, but the author does a great job calculating the actual risk. Also, he shows you many ways in which you can avoid brittle integration points. Caveats I have one warning about this book, but it's half-hearted. This book is what I would all Java-centric. All of the case studies involve systems that are written in Java, and some of the sections will only apply directly to you if you are working with Java-based software. But does that mean that you should avoid this book if you are working with Ruby, PHP, or .Net-based software? Absolutely not. Even though there are a few small sections of the book that won't directly apply to your line of work, most of them will apply in an indirect way, regardless of your platform. And the other 94% of the book will directly apply to medium-to-large systems of every stripe. View all my reviews >>

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