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Search - "elephant"
Boy do I hate office politics...
A client asked our company to fix perf issues on their product. Our coleagues had been picked for the job [being led by another 3rd-party, as per client's request]. Aaand they dropped the ball. The deadline is in 2 weeks, nothing is working.
Mgmt engaged us to put out the fire, but strictly at the scope the other guys were working in.
On the first day of testing we've revealed an elephant-sized perf issue that's as easy to fix as brainlessly changing 4 values in config. And that elephant is masking all the other perf issues.
We got a firm NO for config changes as that is out of the defined scope. And we're asked to continue testing.
I mean, the elephant is THAT huge that any further testing is moot - all other bottlenecks are hidden behind it. And just changing those 4 values would reduce the resources required by a magnitude of ~10.
But that's out of scope...
Client is desperate, lost and honestly asking us, pros in the field, for help.. We know how to help.. It takes 10 seconds to apply the fix..
But our mgmt forbids us to step out of the scope :/
as a result we have to pretend to be dummies hardly knowing what to do and hide the truth from the customer they so desperately want.
This is frustrating. And wrong. And imo unprofessional11
There's nothing like sitting on the edge of your seat when you see a monster batch of records get sent updates.
This system was built 5 years ago and it's "peak" batch size has been < 400 records in a day, it usually sits around < 100.
It's not a big system and just runs in the background. So yea small numbers for this guy.
today though, I thought something fell down and shit its self, someone decided to add a a few thousand records to this thing and update a fuck tonne of data (for this system anyway)😬
The damn thing is standing it's ground and churning, but fuck, the scale of things is beyond what we ever thought it would have to deal with at any one time.
Build for the insane benchmarks kids, one day... someone's going to drop an elephant on it.5
EoS1: This is the continuation of my previous rant, "The Ballad of The Six Witchers and The Undocumented Java Tool". Catch the first part here: https://devrant.com/rants/5009817/...
The Undocumented Java Tool, created by Those Who Came Before to fight the great battles of the past, is a swift beast. It reaches systems unknown and impacts many processes, unbeknownst even to said processes' masters. All from within it's lair, a foggy Windows Server swamp of moldy data streams and boggy flows.
One of The Six Witchers, the Wild One, scouted ahead to map the input and output data streams of the Unmapped Data Swamp. Accompanied only by his animal familiars, NetCat and WireShark.
Two others, bold and adventurous, raised their decompiling blades against the Undocumented Java Tool beast itself, to uncover it's data processing secrets.
Another of the witchers, of dark complexion and smooth speak, followed the data upstream to find where the fuck the limited excel sheets that feeds The Beast comes from, since it's handlers only know that "every other day a new one appears on this shared active directory location". WTF do people often have NPC-levels of unawareness about their own fucking jobs?!?!
The other witchers left to tend to the Burn-Rate Bonfire, for The Sprint is dark and full of terrors, and some bigwigs always manage to shoehorn their whims/unrelated stories into a otherwise lean sprint.
At the dawn of the new year, the witchers reconvened. "The Beast breathes a currency conversion API" - said The Wild One - "And it's claws and fangs strike mostly at two independent JIRA clusters, sometimes upserting issues. It uses a company-deprecated API to send emails. We're in deep shit."
"I've found The Source of Fucking Excel Sheets" - said the smooth witcher - "It is The Temple of Cash-Flow, where the priests weave the Tapestry of Transactions. Our Fucking Excel Sheets are but a snapshot of the latest updates on the balance of some billing accounts. I spoke with one of the priestesses, and she told me that The Oracle (DB) would be able to provide us with The Data directly, if we were to learn the way of the ODBC and the Query"
"We stroke at the beast" - said the bold and adventurous witchers, now deserving of the bragging rights to be called The Butchers of Jarfile - "It is actually fewer than twenty classes and modules. Most are API-drivers. And less than 40% of the code is ever even fucking used! We found fucking JIRA API tokens and URIs hard-coded. And it is all synchronous and monolithic - no wonder it takes almost 20 hours to run a single fucking excel sheet".
Together, the witchers figured out that each new billing account were morphed by The Beast into a new JIRA issue, if none was open yet for it. Transactions were used to update the outstanding balance on the issues regarding the billing accounts. The currency conversion API was used too often, and it's purpose was only to give a rough estimate of the total balance in each Jira issue in USD, since each issue could have transactions in several currencies. The Beast would consume the Excel sheet, do some cryptic transformations on it, and for each resulting line access the currency API and upsert a JIRA issue. The secrets of those transformations were still hidden from the witchers. When and why would The Beast send emails, was still a mistery.
As the Witchers Council approached an end and all were armed with knowledge and information, they decided on the next steps.
The Wild Witcher, known in every tavern in the land and by the sea, would create a connector to The Red Port of Redis, where every currency conversion is already updated by other processes and can be quickly retrieved inside the VPC. The Greenhorn Witcher is to follow him and build an offline process to update balances in JIRA issues.
The Butchers of Jarfile were to build The Juggler, an automation that should be able to receive a parquet file with an insertion plan and asynchronously update the JIRA API with scores of concurrent requests.
The Smooth Witcher, proud of his new lead, was to build The Oracle Watch, an order that would guard the Oracle (DB) at the Temple of Cash-Flow and report every qualifying transaction to parquet files in AWS S3. The Data would then be pushed to cross The Event Bridge into The Cluster of Sparks and Storms.
This Witcher Who Writes is to ride the Elephant of Hadoop into The Cluster of Sparks an Storms, to weave the signs of Map and Reduce and with speed and precision transform The Data into The Insertion Plan.
However, how exactly is The Data to be transformed is not yet known.
Will the Witchers be able to build The Data's New Path? Will they figure out the mysterious transformation? Will they discover the Undocumented Java Tool's secrets on notifying customers and aggregating data?
This story is still afoot. Only the future will tell, and I will keep you posted.6
This is the third part of my ongoing series "The Ballad of the Six Witchers and the Undocumented Java Tool".
In this part, we have the massive Battle of Sparks and Storms.
The first part is here: https://devrant.com/rants/5009817/...
The second part is here: https://devrant.com/rants/5054467/...
Over the last couple sprints and then some, The Witcher Who Writes and the Butchers of Jarfile had studied the decompiled guts of the Undocumented Java Beast and finally derived (most of) the process by which the data was transformed. They even built a model to replicate the results in small scale.
But when such process was presented to the Priests of Accounting at the Temple of Cash-Flow, chaos ensued.
This cannot be! - cried the priests - You must be wrong!
Wrong, the Witchers were not. In every single test case the Priests of Accounting threw at the Witchers, their model predicted perfectly what would be registered by the Undocumented Java Tool at the very end.
It was not the Witchers. The process was corrupted at its essence.
The Witchers reconvened at their fortress of Sprint. In the dark room of Standup, the leader of their order, wise beyond his years (and there were plenty of those), in a deep and solemn voice, there declared:
"Guys, we must not fuck this up." (actual quote)
For the leader of the witchers had just returned from a war council at the capitol of the province. There, heading a table boarding the Archpriest of Accounting, the Augur of Economics, the Marketing Spymaster and Admiral of the Fleet, was the Ciefoh Seat himself.
They had heard rumors about the Order of the Witchers' battles and operations. They wanted to know more.
It was quiet that night in the flat and cloudy plains of Cluster of Sparks and Storms. The Ciefoh Seat had ordered the thunder to stay silent, so that the forces of whole cluster would be available for the Witchers.
The cluster had solid ground for Hive and Parquet turf, and extended from the Connection River to farther than the horizon.
The Witcher Who Writes, seated high atop his war-elephant, looked at the massive battle formations behind.
The frontline were all war-elephants of Hadoop, their mahouts the Witchers themselves.
For the right flank, the Red Port of Redis had sent their best connectors - currency conversions would happen by the hundreds, instantly and always updated.
The left flank had the first and second army of Coroutine Jugglers, trained by the Witchers. Their swift catapults would be able to move data to and from the JIRA cities. No data point will be left behind.
At the center were thousands of Sparks mounting their RDD warhorses. Organized in formations designed by the Witchers and the Priestesses of Accounting, those armoured and strong units were native to this cloudy landscape. This was their home, and they were ready to defend it.
For the enemy could be seen in the horizon.
There were terabytes of data crossing the Stony Event Bridge. Hundreds of millions of datapoints, eager to flood the memory of every system and devour the processing time of every node on sight.
For the Ciefoh Seat, in his fury about the wrong calculations of the processes of the past, had ruled that the Witchers would not simply reshape the data from now on.
The Witchers were to process the entire historical ledger of transactions. And be done before the end of the month.
The metrics rumbled under the weight of terabytes of data crossing the Event Bridge. With fire in their eyes, the war-elephants in the frontline advanced.
Hundreds of data points would be impaled by their tusks and trampled by their feet, pressed into the parquet and hive grounds. But hundreds more would take their place. There were too many data points for the Hadoop war-elephants alone.
But the dawn will come.
When the night seemed darker, the Witchers heard a thunder, and the skies turned red. The Sparks were on the move.
Riding into the parquet and hive turf, impaling scores of data points with their long SIMD lances and chopping data off with their Scala swords, the Sparks burned through the enemy like fire.
The second line of the sparks would pick data off to be sent by the Coroutine Jugglers to JIRA. That would provoke even more data to cross the Event Bridge, but the third line of Sparks were ready for it - those data would be pierced by the rounds provided by the Red Port of Redis, and sent back to JIRA - for good.
They fought for six days and six nights, taking turns so that the battles would not stop. And then, silence. The day was won, all the data crushed into hive and parquet.
Short-lived was the relief. The Witchers knew that the enemy in combat is but a shadow of the troubles that approach. Politics and greed and grudge are all next in line. Are the Witchers heroes or marauders? The aftermath is to come, and I will keep you posted.4