Using GitBook for Secrets

A while ago I decided to try and gather a bunch of non-public information in an easy to write and consume fashion. After a bit of fiddling, and testing different potential solutions, GitBook emerged as the best option. By using MarkDown as the markup language, it’s both cross-platform and easy to manage, as the content is nothing but raw text files.

GitBook is awesome, no question about it, but in this case I didn’t want the content hosted publicly on Thankfully, GitBook is available for download as well, so I ended up running that locally on my MacBook. For details on how to run it locally, check out Setup and Installation of GitBook.

I then set up a private (free) repository on Bitbucket to host the content.

So far this has been a very good experience. Writing content in Markdown is easy and quick, and running this locally makes it easy to check that the edits and additions look like expected in my browser.

[cc lang=”bash” escaped=”true”]
$ gitbook serve dummy
Live reload server started on port: 35729
Press CTRL+C to quit …

info: 7 plugins are installed
info: loading plugin “livereload”… OK
info: loading plugin “highlight”… OK
info: loading plugin “search”… OK
info: loading plugin “lunr”… OK
info: loading plugin “sharing”… OK
info: loading plugin “fontsettings”… OK
info: loading plugin “theme-default”… OK
info: found 13 pages
info: found 8 asset files
info: >> generation finished with success in 2.8s !

Starting server …
Serving book on http://localhost:4000

This way I can have my browser open http://localhost:4000 on one screen, and edit the content on my second screen while the browser auto refreshes.


Once I’ve added some content I’m happy with, I push the changes back to the Bitbucket repository with my Git client. Once I’m happy with everything, GitBook makes it easy to create PDF and eBook versions for distribution.

We happy.

#vDM30in30 progress:
[progressbar_circle percent= 23.333]

What’s Really in the Bag?

Since I “launched” my In the Bag series of weekly links yesterday, I figured I should really show what is indeed in the bag. Lifehacker runs a series called Featured Bag and the voyeur in me finds it interesting what other people carry around, and how they organize it.

This is my attempt at doing the same. This is my everyday carry, most of these items are always in the bag when I leave the house in the morning. I’ve been using backpacks for years, but noticed I always just carry it around on righ shoulder, so I decided to go for a shoulder bag instead. For the most part this works our fine, if I’m travelling for more than a day, I tend to re-pack in one of the backpacks I have instead.

The bag itself is a dbramante1928 Christiansborg which I’m really happy with. Proper leather, and after a couple of months of usage it’s starting to show some patina.

  • MacBook Pro 15″
  • Various Apple dongles (display and ethernet) and cables
  • iPad Mini 4, with a Logitech Keys to Go keyboard
  • Arrow / EMC branded 10000 mAh external battery
  • Logitech R400 presenter
  • Old school paper notebook, with pen
  • Business cards
  • Pens
  • Tiny Leatherman knife/multitool
  • Work access card
  • Bose Quiet Control 25 headset

And that’s it. There is still some room for various papers etc. in the pocket on the back of the bag, and some room in the front pocket as well.


#vDM30in30 progress:
[progressbar_circle percent= 16.666]

Oh wow, it’s already 2016.

A bit late, considering it’s already February, but here it is:

My plan for 2016.

  • Shake things up a bitGo big or go home. 2016 will be a year of changes. It’s about time I shake things up a bit, and 2016 will be that year. More details on this to come later, for now I have to keep it under wraps.

  • Get VCIX certified – I’ve signed up for the new 3V0-622: VMware Certified Advanced Professional 6 – Data Center Virtualization Design Beta Exam. This will be my first ever VMware beta exam. If I fail that one, I will try again later in 2016 to obtain the VCIX certification.

  • Keep vSoup on track – We’ve committed, at least to ourselves, that in 2016 we will record vSoup monthly.

  • VMUG – The Norwegian VMUG is up and running, but I would like to get even better attendance records and more community contributions.The sponsors pays the bills, the community contributions brings the most value.
    In the spirit of the Feed4ward program I’ll be happy to mentor/help anyone who wants to present at a VMUG meeting in Norway.
    I intend to arrange at least 3 VMUG meetings in Bergen in 2016.

  • Attend an international industry conference – In 2015 I missed out on VMworld entirely, due to issues out of my control. My goal is to make sure I attend a least one industry conference this year, most likely VMworld 2016 in Barcelona.

  • Code something – My ambition is that some time in 2016 I will code something. It’s very clear to me that even though I’m in no developer by nature, a basic developer skill set is required by everyone these days. Me included. I’ll consider this my wildcard project for 2016, as I haven’t decided on what to do yet, or even how.

In general, I will continue writing and posting whenever I feel like it. I will also focus even more on public cloud offerings, and especially how to integrate then with existing on-premises solutions. Since these are more general goals that are hard to put into a measurable format, I’ll refrain from putting them down in the list as individual entries. Of course, the best laid plans of mice and men often go awry; 2016 might just move me into other directions too.