Increasing Code Reusability Using Task Groups in Azure DevOps

Let’s assume a scenario in which you are repeating a few tasks from your pipeline into multiple stages and/or pipelines or projects. In that case, it gets really tiring to repeat and configure each task individually over and over again. Azure DevOps provides the feature of Task Group in which we can encapsulate a sequence of tasks from our build or release pipelines and reuse those tasks in other pipelines.

What is Azure DevOps?

Now, let’s talk about Azure DevOps, it is a mixture of the simplest technologies and best practices. Therefore we can go as far as saying that it is the Next Big Thing in the IT Industry. Azure DevOps is a Software as a service (SaaS) platform from Microsoft providing an end-to-end DevOps toolchain for developing and deploying software. Microsoft launched this as they understood the fact that DevOps has become vital to a team’s success.

Task Group

task group facilitates the encapsulation of a sequence of tasks, defined already in a build or a release pipeline, into a single reusable task that can be added to a build or release pipeline (like any other task). We can, as per our choice, extract parameters from the encapsulated tasks as configuration variables, and abstract the rest of the task information.

The new task group is automatically added to the task catalog, ready to be added to other releases and build pipelines. At the project level, the task groups are stored and are not accessible outside the project scope.

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How To Setup An Agent On Azure Devops

Azure DevOps is an integrated service provided by Azure. In recent times, it is observed that Azure DevOps is increasing its penetration into the DevOps community. Being a SaaS service, it doesn’t come with a pre-configured host or better say, an agent to execute its commands. That’s why whenever we want to use our Azure DevOps Pipeline we need to have an agent configured in our Agent Pool. In this blog, we will learn how to configure an agent and later on how to create a service for our host.

Let’s Get Started

Configuring a self-hosted Agent might seem complicated but by following the below steps we can easily configure an agent in our Agent Pool. So let’s get started.

What is Azure DevOps?

Now, let’s talk about Azure DevOps, it is a mixture of the simplest of technology and therefore the application of best practices. We can say, it is the Next Big Thing in the IT Industry. Azure DevOps is a Software as a service (SaaS) platform from Microsoft that provides an end-to-end DevOps toolchain for developing and deploying software. Microsoft recently launched this as they understand that DevOps has become vital to a team’s success.

Azure Self-hosted Agent

An agent that you set up and manage on your own to run jobs is a self-hosted agent. Though we can use a Microsoft Hosted Agent, we prefer a self-hosted Agent. This is to have more control to install dependent software needed for our builds and deployments, machine-level caches and configuration persist from run to run, boosting speed and maintaining the backup of our logs. You can use self-hosted agents in Azure Pipelines or Azure DevOps Server, formerly named Team Foundation Server (TFS). To successfully configure a self-hosted Agent we need an Agent Pool, download & unzip the package, Personal Access Token (PAT) and execute a few shell commands. Let’s move step by step.

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AWS Gateway LoadBalancer: A Load Balancer that we deserve

Nowadays, LoadBalancing is one of the basic needs for the application systems to perform optimally while considering some important factors like- scalability and high availability. Every cloud is providing LBaaS (LoadBalancing as a Service) as an offering so the consumers don’t have to worry about the setup and management of load-balancers by themselves.

But it’s not like that cloud is offering a single type of load balancer for every use case because for different use-case we require a different type of load balancer. For example- we have different load-balancers for Layer4 and Layer7 level traffic.

Recently AWS had a new family member in their load-balancer family and they named it “Gateway Load Balancer“. So gateway load-balancer is a load-balancing service provided by AWS to send traffic to the different appliances, applications, firewalls, etc. that are not part of the current VPC.

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Recap Amrita InCTF 2019 | Part 2

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Amrita InCTF 10th Edition is an offline CTF(Capture the Flag) event hosted by Amrita University. In our previous blog, we discussed about talks from the first day. In this we’ll share some lights on the talks from second day.

Continue reading “Recap Amrita InCTF 2019 | Part 2”

Recap Amrita InCTF 2019 | Part 1

Amrita InCTF 10th Edition, is an offline CTF(Capture the Flag) event hosted by Amrita university at their Amritapuri campus 10 KM away from Kayamkulam in Kerala, India. In this year’s edition two people from Opstree got invited to the final round after roughly two months of solving challenges online. The dates for the final rounds were 28th,29th and 30th December 2019. The first two days comprised of talks by various people from the industry and the third day was kept for the final competition. In the upcoming three blog series starting now, we’d like to share all the knowledge, experiences and learning from this three day event.

Continue reading “Recap Amrita InCTF 2019 | Part 1”