Database Deployments with Octopus Deploy and a SQL Cluster

So you have a SQL Cluster and you want to run a database upgrade using Octopus Deploy… where do you start? There are actually two strategies you can employ to do this, and you can choose the most appropriate one based on how you have things set up. Octopus Deploy is cluster-agnoistic, but you canContinue reading “Database Deployments with Octopus Deploy and a SQL Cluster”

Secure Octopus Deploy with an Auto-Updating Let’s Encrypt Certificate

Octopus Deploy has a web portal that runs a self-hosted website on whatever port you specify. You can even have Octopus generate a self-signed certificate in order to use HTTPS when browsing the web portal… but if you connect other application that are strictly validating certificates, they won’t be too pleased with self-signed certificates. PurchasingContinue reading “Secure Octopus Deploy with an Auto-Updating Let’s Encrypt Certificate”

Update Work Items with Build Number During vNext Builds

In the days of XAML Builds in TFS, the build would rather handily update the work item with the appropriate “Integration Build” value… so you knew which release would include your fix. Happy days. Along came vNext builds in TFS / Visual Studio Online / Visual Studio Team Services, which solved all of the painContinue reading “Update Work Items with Build Number During vNext Builds”

Script SQL Server Backup with Batch Files and PowerShell

This is not our preferred method of deployment, but we have some batch-file based deployments still in active use (most of our deployments are executed via Octopus Deploy, but some of the concepts below are re-usable there too). One of the tasks we perform during a deployment is a database backup prior to schema changes.Continue reading “Script SQL Server Backup with Batch Files and PowerShell”

Highlight Versions on Octopus Deploy Dashboard

Unless you enjoy carefully comparing numbers, the Octopus Deploy Dashboard is a bit of a pain when it comes to seeing what version is one what environment. What follows is a terribly hacky trick you can use to colourise the version numbers on the dashboard (a feature that I imagine will eventually become a gracefulContinue reading “Highlight Versions on Octopus Deploy Dashboard”

Intermittent Replication Issue – Distribution Agent Failed to Create Temporary Files

This will seem like a strange issue, because everything will work perfectly well for a period of time – but then it will all go wrong and you’ll get an error such as: Error messages: The distribution agent failed to create temporary files in ‘C:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\110\COM’ directory. System returned errorcode 5. (Source: MSSQL_REPL,Continue reading “Intermittent Replication Issue – Distribution Agent Failed to Create Temporary Files”

DataDog Interactive Monitor Report

There are two competing fundamental needs for web operations… reducing false alarms, and ensuring you never miss a real incident! Here is a useful DataDog feature that you might not be using and that can help out a great deal in finding that magical balance-point between these two competing needs… interactive monitor reports. You canContinue reading “DataDog Interactive Monitor Report”

Cannot Create a File When That File Already Exists

This is one of the few hitches you may come across when deploying to IIS from Octopus Deploy: Cannot create a file when that file already exists. (Exception from HRESULT: 0x800700B7) This error simply means something is already running on the port number that you are planning on using (and that probably means the defaultContinue reading “Cannot Create a File When That File Already Exists”

Simulate Real Users with JMeter

If you are setting up a JMeter test to simulate user load on your website or web application, you’ll need to follow these steps to make your tests as realistic as possible. Cache and Cookies Add a “HTTP Cookie Manager” and a “HTTP Cache Manager” to your test. Set them to clear on each iteration.Continue reading “Simulate Real Users with JMeter”

Kill a Deployment Stuck in a Cancelled State in Octopus Deploy

This very rarely happens in Octopus Deploy, but if something catastrophic happens you may find it useful. I discovered this when the SQL Database server that has the OctopusDeploy database on was switched off during a deployment. Due to the loss of connectivity, the deployment got stuck, and cancelling it caused the deployment to getContinue reading “Kill a Deployment Stuck in a Cancelled State in Octopus Deploy”