Friday, April 26, 2019

AZ-102 exam

I've just passed exam AZ-102, Microsoft Azure Administrator Certification Transition, which I wanted to do it for some time, considering that will be retired on June 30th.

It covers a lot of Azure administration, especially VNets, AAD, monitoring and migrations. It was interesting to read about newly introduced features, since my previous 70-533, which you need to have in order to take this transition exam instead of full AZ-100 / AZ-101. For instance, I wasn't sure if they will use new Azure PowerShell with 'Az' prefix or regular 'AzureRm' - it was the later.

Now I'm ready for the next ones in the pipeline :)

Monday, April 15, 2019

NGINX with custom HTTPS local test domain on Mac OS

This is more a note  to myself, because I'm always forgetting the easiest way to generate a self signed trusted SSL wild-card certificate for local test domain, like sample.test. You can use OpenSSL tool to generate it like this:

openssl req -x509 -newkey rsa:2048 -sha256 -days 3650 -nodes -keyout sample.test.key -out sample.test.crt -subj /CN=*.sample.test

You can also add it to your Mac OS Keychain Access with this:

sudo security add-trusted-cert -d -r trustRoot -k /Library/Keychains/System.keychain sample.test.crt

But in my case was still not trusted, so it didn't work fine in Google Chrome.

The easiest way is to use open-source mkcert. You can install it with brew on Mac OS or download the latest release version for your OS. Just follow the docs to install it and generate a new certificate, which will be also automatically properly registered:

mkcert sample.test "*.sample.test" localhost

After renaming the files as sample.test.key and sample.test.crt, copying them in NGINX folder change nginx.conf file (or an included file) to something like this:

upstream sample-test {
        server localhost:5001;
        server localhost:5002;

server {
    listen *:80;
    server_name     www.sample.test sample.test;
    add_header Strict-Transport-Security max-age=15768000;
    return 301 https://$host$request_uri;

server {
    listen *:443    ssl;
    server_name     www.sample.test sample.test;
    ssl_certificate sample.test.crt;
    ssl_certificate_key sample.test.key;
    ssl_protocols TLSv1.1 TLSv1.2;
    ssl_prefer_server_ciphers on;
    ssl_ecdh_curve secp384r1;
    ssl_session_cache shared:SSL:10m;
    ssl_session_tickets off;

    add_header Strict-Transport-Security "max-age=63072000; includeSubdomains; preload";
    add_header X-Frame-Options DENY;
    add_header X-Content-Type-Options nosniff;

    access_log  /usr/local/etc/nginx/logs/access.log;
    location / {
        proxy_pass  http://sample-test;

This uses NGINX SSL termination, so traffic from NGIX to application server is not encrypted, and uses NGINX upstream to load balance HTTP traffic to multiple (2) web application instances. All traffic on port 80 (HTTP) is automatically redirected to port 443 (HTTPS), which uses newly generated certificates.

Tuesday, April 9, 2019

Google Cloud Run

An interesting announcement today from Google: Cloud Run. See their details and pricing, interestingly enough, rounded up to the nearest 100 millisecond.

My first impression is that Google is offering something similar to Azure Container Instances, which has the same idea of deploying workloads in a serverless way using containers, paid by the second (Azure) or hundredth millisecond (GCP).

One good thing about GCP offer is the free quota of Cloud Run, which has 2 million free requests, excellent for trying them out. On the down side they don't support .NET Core, only other languages, like Node.js, Python or Golang.

Read the full announcement for all details and features, like the full stack of serverless apps.

This is something  I'd definitely want to try.

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Visual Studio 2019

If you are following Microsoft's news you know that they launched today Visual Studio 2019. I installed it some weeks ago and worked fine on Windows, except the hiccup I had on Mac with Preview 3. Download it from here.

Watching some videos and reading some articles on VS 2019 I found out some interesting stuff I wasn't aware before:

  • Live Share works for VS 2017 and Visual Studio Code, just install the appropriate plugins. Super handful.
  • Find out about solution filters: load only the projects you need immediately, with easy loading dependencies with a click of a button (notice "unloaded" projects):
  • Even better, you can save that list as a *.slnf file, and reopen easily next time.
  • CodeLens for Community version.
  • ML enhanced search. Very easy to add a class or interface from the search textbox (CTRL-Q). 
  • IntelliCode: analyze your code (ML) for improved IntelliSense suggestions (notice the start in front of frequently used properties or methods):

  • Integrated code reviews (pull requests):

See the whole list of new features.