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Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Production deployments from the friendly skies

This past weekend I flew to NY to attend my youngest sister's graduation from Hofstra. Once again I flew Virgin America like I always try to when I fly to NY. Power outlets at each seat mean that I can either work or play on my mac the entire time turning a 5 hour flight into nothing more than just another day at the office or a coffee shop :-) The only thing that's ever been missing of course is internet access. Well for $12.95 on Virgin you can now get high speed internet access. I forgot to test the speed but for browsing it was fine. I did notice lag when streaming a video but that's to be expected. Simply having it at all and having it usable is a huge win.

So there I was working on some fixes for LendingKarma and was ready to deploy. Then the realization that I was about to embark upon a production deployment from 30K feet hit me. What if there's a problem and the wifi goes out? I can't rollback thus leaving the site in whatever state caused by my deployment gone wrong. After posing the question to some fellow engineers via a twitter/facebook status update which of course resulted in "do it man!", because they're not the ones that have to deal with the fallout of a failure :-), I pushed ahead with my deployment. Wouldn't you know it, there was a problem and I immediately rolled back. Phew! Murphy's Law strikes again! I fixed the problem quickly and then redeployed successfully. Wow... I just did a production deployment from an airplane. Pretty damn cool :-)


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