Index of Tekhead.it Blog Posts on Amazon #AWS

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I wrote my first blog post on AWS in February 2016 and the series is growing pretty quickly, so I thought it was worthwhile indexing all of the current posts and providing an updated list as this grows. Hopefully this should make them easier for people to find!

AWS Certification

Tips and Gotchas Series

Random Posts

Also, just in case I forget to keep this page updated:
http://tekhead.it/blog/category/aws/

AWSPosts

It’s a Geek Life! HDD Watch Review

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I’m not a “watch guy”, meaning I don’t have a collection of 50 varying and expensive watches, however, I do consider myself as someone who appreciates the skill which goes into producing a timepiece. Regardless of what many millennials will tell you, I also believe you should never be without one, and a mobile phone simply will not do… 🙂

It was my birthday recently, and based on a none-too-subtle hint from me, my wife very kindly gave me the gift of an HDD watch! Needless to say, I was extremely chuffed with it, so thought I would provide a mini review here.

I originally heard about these very funky (yes, read: nerdy) watches via the biggest watch aficionado I know IRL, Stephen Foskett, who has an extensive collection and loves anything which goes tick-tock! He even runs his own watch blog, Grail Watch, which I recommend for any horologists (if that is the correct term?).

The original run of 500 watches came from an IndieGoGo campaign in 2014. In March this year, Jean Jerome, the creator of the HDD Watch, has opened up his own website for anyone who missed out the first time.

It's more than 8-bits!

It’s more than 8-bits!

The watch itself is of a very decent build quality. The HDD Microdrive (Hitachi 4GB to be precise) has been encased in a custom (very shiny!) stainless steel enclosure, which provides both shock and water protection. A Miyota GL20 quartz movement is added, which provides accuracy to +/- 20 seconds per month. Mine seems to be achieving something within this window but with no second hand it’s hard to tell! I’ve also caught it once or twice on hard objects and ne’er a scratch has been seen, so I would definitely attest to the build quality.

When did you last stick an HDD in a glass of water and expect it to keep working?!

When did you last stick an HDD in a glass of water and expect it to keep working?!

Most of my life I have been used to wearing segmented metal watch straps with butterfly clasps, which I find to be most comfortable and secure. When I originally received the watch I did consider replacing the strap, which is rubberised (neoprene) and modeled on a PCB, with a segmented metal strap. Replacement straps are available from the vendor, including a metal expansion strap, but it turns out that this is one of the features which most draws the eye, and people often comment on this first! It even drew the eye of one of my interviewers when I was interviewing for my recent change of role, which I don’t think harmed my chances! 🙂

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There were only two negatives I would highlight about the watch, one is a “bug” and the other is a “missing” feature!

  • The bug is that there is a tiny piece of dust on the inside of the glass on my particular watch, which is then reflected in the surface of the platter as well. It’s just a bit of an annoyance, and I am hoping I will be able to clean it out whenever I eventually have to replace the battery.
  • The feature I wish the watch had, is a date window. I didn’t realise how often I actually use this feature of my current watch until I’ve had to go without it! I fully understand why one isn’t included however, as it would spoil the look of the platter, and there is nowhere else on the watch for a date to comfortably sit, even if a mechanism could be found which would allow for remote placement of this element.

Overall, if you want the ultimate in Geek Chic, I highly recommend an HDD watch from http://hddwatches.com. A brilliant purchase and a unique piece of history, which at only €150, is well worth the purchase price IMHO!

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A bit of good news… It’s time for a change!

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So for those of you who have been following my meandering mutterings for a while, you may know that I’ve been working as a Solution Architect for the UK arm of a pan European managed service provider over the last few years.

In the past I have worked in several different types of IT environment, from internal IT at a large enterprise, to working as an outsourcer for two very large vendors. Being at a service provider is really interesting as you get to work with many different customers, with many varying requirements, and help each one to find the right solution for their business. I have found it to be such a cool part of the industry, I am keen to continue working in it for the foreseeable!

As such, as of next week, I am very excited to be starting a new role as a Solution Architect for Rackspace Ltd in the UK, based out of the (rather awesome) main office in Hayes!

OpenStack-logo-150x150.pngBefore anyone asks, I should note that this does not mean that I will suddenly forget my VMware indoctrination (should that be inculcation or institutionalisation? 😉 ), and go all in on OpenStack. That said, it is actually one of the things I am most looking forward to learning more about.

Coincidentally, not long before being approached about the role I was actually tweeting about the growing popularity of OpenStack. This seems to me to be a great time to learn more about it, especially with things like VIO becoming more and more popular, helping enterprises who might otherwise be reluctant to jump on board without enterprise levels of support.

With any luck, I may even get the time to write about OpenStack here on the blog, but of course, it will not be the only subject for my posts! I remain fiercely vendor agnostic, just at a larger independent organisation! 🙂

On that vein, fingers crossed I will still be able to put the same amount of time aside of an evening to maintain the blog and attend events such as Tech Field Day in the future, but for the next few months at least things may be a little quieter. I will be head down, brain-sponge engaged, learning all about the hundreds of products Rackspace provide, meeting my new colleagues and generally making a nuisance of myself with newbie questions!

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Open Homelab Deck from London VMUG – April 2016

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As you may already have seen, the Open Homelab project is going awesomely well so far! For those people who weren’t able to make it to the session at the April VMUG which started the project, the deck can be downloaded below including all the speaker notes to give you an idea of the kinds of stuff we discussed.

Apologies for not posting it sooner!

Download: The Open Homelab Project v0.4 – With Notes (PDF)

You can find more info about the results of the OpenHomelab discussion here:

crowdsourcing

Don’t forget, if you want to get involved with the project, you can find out how here:
Get Involved with the Open Homelab Project!

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