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Using Helm and Pulumi to define cloud native infrastructure

Alex Clemmer Alex Clemmer
Using Helm and Pulumi to define cloud native infrastructure

The Helm community is one of the brightest spots in the infrastructure ecosystem: collectively, it has accumulated person-decades of operational expertise to produce Kubernetes manifests that “just work.”

But for many users, it is not feasible to run *everything* in Kubernetes, and the community is just starting to develop answers to questions like: what happens when a Helm Chart needs to interface with, for example, a managed database like AWS RDS or Azure CosmosDB?

Pulumi is a cloud native development platform designed to be able to express any cloud native infrastructure as code in a natural, intentional manner using familiar languages. The most natural way to solve this challenge would be to stand up an instance of AWS RDS, populate a Kubernetes Secret with the connection details, and then simply let my application use these newly available resources. Pulumi gives users the primitives they need in order to achieve tasks like this most effectively.

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Building a future of cloud engineering

Joe Duffy Joe Duffy

We founded Pulumi because of a deeply held belief that the cloud promises to change all aspects of software development and that there remains an incredible opportunity to reimagine the entire experience, from idea to creation to delivery to management, with one person in mind: you, the engineer.

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Continuous Delivery to Any Cloud using GitHub Actions

Joe Duffy Joe Duffy
Continuous Delivery to Any Cloud using GitHub Actions

Today we announced our partnership with GitHub on the new GitHub Actions feature. We are super excited about this bold and innovative technology, especially as it relates to Pulumi, and CI/CD more broadly. We truly believe that Pulumi plus GitHub Actions delivers the easiest, most capable, and friction-free way to achieve continuous delivery of cloud applications and infrastructure, no matter your cloud – AWS, Azure, Google Cloud, Kubernetes, or even on-premises. In this post, we’ll dig deeper to see why, and how to get up and running. It’s refreshingly easy!

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Lambdas as Lambdas: The magic of simple serverless Functions

Cyrus Najmabadi Cyrus Najmabadi
Lambdas as Lambdas: The magic of simple serverless Functions

Pulumi’s approach to infrastructure as code uses familiar languages instead of YAML or DSLs. One major advantage of this approach is that AWS Lambdas, Azure Functions, Google Cloud Functions, et al. can just be real lambdas in your favorite language, offering a flexible and simple path to serverless. Such functions behave as normal functions, allowing you to treat serverless code as part of your application instead of separate “infrastructure” that needs to be configured, managed, and versioned manually. In this post, we’ll examine this capability in JavaScript, which is already very function- and callback-oriented, making serverless feel like a natural extension of the language we already know and love.

While Functions as a Service (FaaS) systems have become more popular, getting up and running can still feel overly complex compared to normal application development. FaaS offerings today divide the development experience between “infrastructure” – doing all the work to configure the Lambda runtime itself (i.e. how much memory to use, what environment variables should be present, etc.) – and writing and maintaining the code that will execute in the function itself when triggered. Most developers just want to focus on the latter, write some code, and have it work.

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How do Kubernetes Deployments work?

Alex Clemmer Alex Clemmer
How do Kubernetes Deployments work?

This post is part 3 in a series on the Kubernetes API. Earlier, Part 1 focused on the lifecycle of a Pod and Part 2 focused on the lifecycle of a Service.

What is happening when a Deployment rolls out a change to your app? What does it actually do when a Pod crashes or is killed? What happens when a Pod is re-labled so that it’s not targeted by the Deployment?

Deployment is probably the most complex resource type in Kubernetes core. Deployment specifies how changes should be rolled out over ReplicaSets, which themselves specify how Pods should be replicated in a cluster.

In this post we continue our exploration of the Kubernetes API, cracking Deployment open using kubespy, a small tool we developed to observe Kubernetes resources in real-time.

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Running a Serverless Node.js HTTP Server on AWS and Azure

Cyrus Najmabadi Cyrus Najmabadi

The newly introduced cloud.HttpServer in Pulumi makes it easy to serve a standard Node.js HTTP server as a serverless API on any cloud platform.  This new API brings together the flexibility and rich ecosystem of Node.js HTTP servers, the cost and operational simplicity of serverless APIs, and the multi-cloud authoring and deployment of Pulumi.  In this post, we walk through some of the background on why we introduced this new API and how it fits into the Node.js HTTP ecosystem.

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kubespy trace: a real-time view into of a Kubernetes Service

Alex Clemmer Alex Clemmer
kubespy trace: a real-time view into of a Kubernetes Service

This post is part 3 in a series on the Kubernetes API. Earlier, Part 1 focused on the lifecycle of a Pod, and later Part 3 details how Kubernetes deployments work.

Why isn’t my Pod getting any traffic?

An experienced ops team running on GKE might assemble the following checklist to help answer this question:

  1. Does a Service exist? Does that service have a .spec.selector that matches some number of Pods?
  2. Are the Pods alive and has their readiness probe passed?
  3. Did the Service create an Endpoints object that specifies one or more Pods to direct traffic to?
  4. Is the Service reachable via DNS? When you kubectlexec into a Pod and you use curl to poke the Service hostname, do you get a response? (If not, does any Service have a DNS entry?)
  5. Is the Service reachable via IP? When you SSH into a Node and you use curl to poke the Service IP, do you get a response?
  6. Is kube-proxy up? Is it writing iptables rules? Is it proxying to the Service?

This question might have the highest complexity-to-sentence-length ratio of any question in the Kubernetes ecosystem. Unfortunately, it’s also a question that every user finds themselves asking at some point. And when they do, it usually means their app is down.

To help answer questions like this, we’ve been developing a small diagnostic tool, kubespy. In this post we’ll look at the new kubespy trace command, which is broadly aimed at automating questions 1, 2, 3, and providing “hints” about 4 and 5.

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Advanced TypeScript type FTW!

Cyrus Najmabadi Cyrus Najmabadi
Advanced TypeScript type FTW!

We at Pulumi love TypeScript for cloud apps and infrastructure, because of its rich type system and great ahead-of-time typechecking – making for a more productive inner loop and helping to find errors sooner. The typesystem magic behind how this works for infrastructure as code can be fascinating!

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