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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. Automating Semantic Versioning for any Project

    Semantic versioning is the best known and most widely adopted convention for versioning software. If you aren’t familiar with it, read up on it before continuing. Once you start implementing semantic versioning for a project, you realize that you have just given yourself a small check list of items to go through for every release: Look through the commits since last release and determine if this will be a major, minor or patch release Decide...…


  2. Building a Golden Image Pipeline

    Welcome to this series of posts about creating golden images, and building a golden image pipeline. In this post, we are going to start with some definitions and introduce some concepts around the creation of golden images. Future posts will go in depth as to how to create a golden image pipeline. The series will focus on using Packer, Ansible and Windows, but the content will be generic enough to apply to any platform or...…


  3. 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...…


  4. 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...…


  5. 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...…