It's Top5 time again, and I swear it should only be Wednesday, yet the calendar says Friday. My week must have gone missing. If you see it, please let me know. I'm sure it's lonely and scared, and wants to come home. There have been so many things going on this week that it's been dizzying even for me to keep up with them…and that's kinda what I do, right? I will, however, attempt to sift through all the awesome contributions to DC to bring you the goodness you so rightly deserve, as is always my intent. This week we'll cover Blogs, Tech Tips, Perl scripts and more. Sit back and relax, because here's your DC Top5:

 

Me Caveman, Need Picture: BigIP Config Virtualizer

http://devcentral.f5.com/weblogs/jason/archive/2009/01/21/me-caveman-need-picture-bigip-config-visualizer.aspx

Jason does a great service to the community at large by calling out just how darn cool the BigIP Config Virtualizer (BCV) is. This contribution by Michael Thompson is far beyond just a CodeShare entry, it's a perl based application that will read in your bigip.conf file and output … ready for this? Images. This script will output an image for every virtual server defined inside the config. These images can then be imported and edited in something like Visio to give you a big head-start on putting together documentation or diagrams for your network. This is a really exciting idea, with LOTS of room for potential expansion and additions, that just might prove to be a big deal, so I'd keep an eye out. Jason gives a good example of just what this might look like that's worth taking a look. Don't forget to click through to the actual CodeShare entry as well!

 

What Are the Benefits of WebAccelerator?

http://devcentral.f5.com/weblogs/dawn/archive/2009/01/21/what-are-the-benefits-of-webaccelerator.aspx

This extremely straight-forward and likely often asked question is the impetus for Dawn's easy to consume blog entry as a response. Dawn points to a thread that lists out some of the benefits web acceleration brings to the table, as well as whitepapers to support that info, but I think more importantly she outlines in very easy to understand terms a couple of the core benefits of having an acceleration device in place for your application. More than that, though, is her apparent commitment to turn this into a series which I'm hopeful will be a "plain-clothes" look at just what web acceleration can do for you, why you might want it, and what you need to know about it. I'm hopeful that there will be many more of these posts by Dawn, as she's one of our resident acceleration experts and there's plenty of demystifying to be done.

 

DevCentral Weekly Roundup Episode 71

http://devcentral.f5.com/weblogs/dcpodcast/archive/2009/01/22/devcentral-weekly-roundup-episode-71---jason-threw-one-up.aspx

This week's podcast was a special one, thanks to our guest - Michael Thompson. We got into some detail with Michael about the BigIP Config Virtualizer, what it does, how it works, and more. He told us a little about the source of the project and how he arrived with the solution he has. He also gets into some more in-depth technical info for those propeller heads out there, like me. He even used Perl to build the solution, which I have to publicly approve of. Aside from this dive into the BCV with Michael, there's plenty of good content always found in the weekly DevCentral podcast so I recommend taking a listen when you've got a few minutes.

 

Load balancing is key to successful cloud-based (dynamic) architectures

http://devcentral.f5.com/weblogs/macvittie/archive/2009/01/23/load-balancing-is-key-to-successful-cloud-based-dynamic-architectures.aspx

Always one to produce consistently good content, and lots of it, Lori doesn't disappoint this week. Her blog post on why load balancing is integral to cloud computing is a good one, and something I think everyone that has any intent, desire or curiosity about getting into cloud computing should read through. Her main tenant is that cloud computing relies on more than just several deployed servers, but an entire infrastructure working together to deliver a solution in an elastic, flexible manner. To do this, you need an infrastructure that can move and bend and re-size just as well as your application an virtually managed servers can. Not only is she right, she's also touching on a very important piece of a successful cloud deployment that can be very easy to overlook from an application standpoint and background. This is one that you don't want to miss.

 

20 Lines or Less #20

http://devcentral.f5.com/weblogs/cwalker/archive/2009/01/21/20-lines-or-less-20.aspx

Last but not least, it's the 20th edition celebration of the 20 Lines or Less! Get out your funny hats and balloons, it's a party! For this week's 20LoL I decided to dig back through the first 19 editions and find the three examples that stood out most to me as iRules that were the epitome of what I've been searching for in my quest to find the best iRules in 20 Lines or Less. Ranging from simple in concept and elegantly implemented to conceptually mind-bending and fun, from arrays to carts before horses, these examples make me excited to work with such an amazing technology every time I dive back into them. There are lots more iRules to be had in less than 21 lines, so stay tuned for more, but enjoy the recap this week.

 

There you have it, five more from the top of my list of awesome tidbits from DevCentral this week. Hopefully the trip has been a rewarding one for you, it always is for me. Feedback and suggestions are always more than welcome so don't be shy. Thanks for reading and I'll see you next week.

#Colin

Listening to: Daft Punk - Alive 2007 - Touch It / Technologic

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