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Matthew Hodgkins Blog


❤️er of Automation, AWS, DevOps, CI/CD, Python, Golang and Observability. Aussie living in the Netherlands. Principal Engineer at Coolblue.


  1. Up your AWS CloudFormation game with Visual Studio Code

    AWS CloudFormation is an amazing tool for infrastructure as code. What used to take weeks to do on-premises, is now possible in a few minutes with some JSON, or better yet, YAML. This doesn’t mean we can’t do better and improve our efficiency even more. You won’t notice any problems working with a few CloudFormation stacks. A few dozen stacks later, or complicated stacks with many resources though, and we need to start optimizing. Let’s...…


  2. Tackling a Fear Of Public Speaking

    I cannot remember a time when I didn’t have a fear of public speaking. The shaky voice and knees, the butterflies, getting too much into your head just minutes before you begin your presentation. I don’t know why I feel like this about public speaking, but I’m not alone. You have probably heard about surveys often showing that people fear public speaking more than death itself. For the last 18 months, I’ve been working on...…


  3. Splunk Spotlight - Alerts

    Once you have your data in Splunk, you often come across situations when you would like to be notified when something happens (or doesn’t). This is where Splunk alerts come in, where we can get alerts based on search results. Getting Splunk setup Getting test data Enable a TCP port Running a data generator script Alerting basics Cron scheduling Example 1 - Sending a webhook Example 2 - Alerting to Slack Example 3 - Alerting...…


  4. Splunk Spotlight - The Lookup Command

    Splunk is an amazing logging aggregation and searching tool. Even though I’ve been using it a few months now, I feel like I am just scratching the surface of what it can do. My company recently switch over from the ELK stack (ElasticSearch, LogStash and Kibana) as we were moving to the cloud, with a focus on using managed services. The ELK stack is awesome, but it can be a pain to administer and extend....…


  5. ChatOps with PowerShell and Errbot

    Have you written automation scripts using PowerShell before, but find it hard getting your end users or your support people to use them? Let’s solve this with ChatOps. We will have a quick introduction to ChatOps and then dive into installing a Errbot (a chat bot) on Windows. After learning the basics of Errbot, we will run through some code examples so you can easily bring your scripts to users through chat. Finally we will...…