R15Cookie Blog

A DevOps practitioner with an appreciation for robust architectures.


This is the personal website of Steve Miller. You can contact me here.

Personal Summary

Steve Miller is a DevOps practitioner who enjoys creating robust architectures leveraging development and operational best practices. His 19+ years of experience cover a wide variety of platforms in the public and private sectors. His background covers a wide variety of cloud, virtualization, and enterprise datacenter technologies.

Site Name Origin

The domain name is from a phrase that came while drifting asleep: “We need to put a cookie on the R15 resistor”

Personal Projects

Personal Tech Stack

Professional Publications

Speaking Engagements

Professional Experience

Plex Systems - Sr. Systems Engineer (Dec 2019 - Present)

Responsible for production infrastructure and site reliability engineering for Plex's SaaS offering.

  • Maintenance on on-prem and cloud kubernetes infrastructure, including kubeadm based, Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS) and Rancher (RKE) based clusters
  • Maintenance and development of infrastructure as code (IaC) components for both Azure and on-prem leveraging Terraform
  • Primary SRE lead in projects deploying containerize workloads such as VerneMQ and Grafana
  • Cost savings by adjustment of metrics being sent to third party monitoring integrations

Blue Medora - DevOps Engineer (Oct 2016 - Dec 2019)

Responsible for providing enterprise-level infrastructure and resources to the sales and engineering teams, both on-premise and remote.

  • Built out an on-prem OS deployment system leveraging Foreman to deploy systems on a vCenter/ESXi cluster. Included integrations to DNS, Active Directory, and Chef. This system enabled rapid deployment of environments based on developer and project demands, leveraging both image and PXE based builds
  • Built and supported the demo environments for use by sales and partners. Later migrated to Amazon AWS in order to improve uptime and availability to our worldwide sales teams.
  • Offered direct assistance to the Sales team for several larger deals. This included enhancing documentation as well as providing custom-compiled utilities in order to diagnose and support more complex configurations, such as Kerberos against Active Directory within a Java application.
  • Developed a custom Python utility, vROpsCLI, that leverages a REST API interface to enable larger customers an easier method to manage their environments.
  • DevOps Engineer on the SaaS application platform, including management of a Kubernetes cluster in Amazon AWS, and a build pipeline leveraging TravisCI and Jenkins.
  • Introduced Terraform to the SaaS to better manage core infrastructure outside of Kubernetes.
  • Played a crucial role in achieving SOC2 compliance. This included fully documenting the deployment pipeline, and ensuring all documented policies tied back to technical controls to ensure compliance.
  • Directly supported developers and QA in the following technologies:
    • Amazon AWS, Google Cloud, Microsoft Azure
    • Cisco MDS, F5 BigIP, Palo Alto Firewall
    • Couchbase, Elasticsearch, Hadoop, Redis
    • Microsoft Technologies (AD, SCOM, SCVMM, HyperV, SQL)
    • Nagios

Gordon Food Service - Security Engineer (May 2016 - Oct 2016)

Responsible for monitoring and adjusting security controls within Gordon Food Service. Perform risk assessments against various software solutions. Perform security assessments against potential breach situations as necessary.

  • Performed a migration and upgrade of the primary file integrity monitoring system.
  • Assisted with upgrading the security information and event management system (SIEM), including the diagnosis of potential OS level bugs.
  • Analyzed unusual traffic from a third party device, and provided documentation and evidence that was used for vendor remediation.
  • Hardened a bastion box by implementing common security controls and two-factor authentication.
  • Used a Vagrant based workflow to assist with upgrades and configuration testing.
  • Developed a Python based CLI tool to generate tickets based on events observed from the security incident response system.

Gordon Food Service - System Administrator (March 2008 - May 2016)

Responsible for the management of 170+ remote Linux servers, 20+ Linux/HPUX/AIX/Windows central servers, 700+ Windows workstations, and 700+ point of sale systems.

  • Technical lead for the rollout of new credit card authorization system. Engineered a redundant system that met disaster recovery targets. The system successfully passed an external PCI evaluation as well as an internal threat model review.
  • Implemented a CFEngine configuration management system for PCI based system to assist in management and compliance. Migrated that configuration management system to Puppet in order to leverage shared resources across the company.
  • Developed a remote PXE network-based imaging system for Linux servers, Windows workstations, and 4690 POS systems. The new system removed the need for external media and allowed remote scheduling of imaging and recovery activities. The imaging system was capable of automating the setup of HP's BMC technology, iLO. *Performed forensic work on a Linux based appliance, as well as a Windows-based DVR. Provided written documentation used for later remediation and vendor negotiation processes.
  • Migrated system administration scripts and configurations to subversion in order to improve development, as well as to support SOX and PCI compliance audits.
  • Implemented a VMWare Cluster for the Marketplace division. Migrated a major application from HPUX to Linux running on top of vSphere.

Ferris State University (Feb. 2005 - March 2008)

Responsible for the maintenance of Solaris, Linux, and HPUX servers at the institution, as well as a variety of Windows 2000/2003 servers and scripts. Assisted with tuning and maintenance of Java based server applications.

  • Technical team lead for the implementation of a new primary e-Learning application, Blackboard Vista Enterprise, utilizing a BEA Weblogic clustered application tier.
  • Installed and configured a active/passive DNS failover system for the primary web server.
  • Implemented a new Clariion CX3-40 array, migrating production data from a Clariion CX500.
  • Developed a scalability testing system for interactive web-based applications.
  • Secondary support for the VMWare ESX environment. Migrated the student email server to the VM environment, reducing cost and increasing availability.
  • Provided customized Perl scripts within the Appworx environment, to add GPG and SFTP functionality to that suite.

Baker College (Sept. 2002 - March 2008)

Taught a variety of Computer Science, Computer Information Systems, and Networking Courses.

  • Received the Lighthouse Award for the creative use of blended instruction to run two classes simultaneously.
  • Used a variety of hands-on techniques to increase knowledge and retention. Enhanced Java instruction using Java-based software robots to demonstrate object-oriented principles.
  • Classes taught:
    • Unix Admin:- Intro to Unix/Linux, Unix/Linux System Administration, Web Server Administration
    • Development:- Interactive Web Development, Perl Programming, Java Programming
    • Architecture:- Computer Architecture, Advanced Computer Architecture
    • Security:- Security+, Introduction to Cryptography

Marion Public Schools (Aug. 2003 - Feb. 2005)

Responsible for the technology program, including all PC and Network maintenance, budget and grant writing, policy development and collaboration with other districts.

  • Used PHP and MySQL to develop a dynamic schedule for under-performing students, saving 20 person-hours a week of manual scheduling effort.
  • Installed and maintained an Exchange server used for administrative email and calendar services. Used a Linux based SMTP frontend which provided security and email services for teachers, saving Exchange licensing costs across the district.


Michigan Amature Hockey Association District 6 (Aug 2011 - Present)

  • Webmaster for the primary MAHA website: https://www.mahadistrict6.org
  • Implements Google Workspace (Gsuite) for Non-Profits, allowing personalized mail and other Google Apps to be used within the organization.
  • Deployed an online payment system for the District Tournaments

Cornerstone Church (May 2014 - May 2016)

  • Developed the back-end code to load data from SaaS data solution, through REST API, using C#. Also developed REST endpoints to query data that was used in custom front-end code.
  • Assisted in maintenance of content on website.

Adray Hockey Association (July 2001 - July 2018)

  • Rewrote web app, migrating from Coldfusion/Microsoft Access to PHP/MySQL.
  • Implemented an MVC system to make PHP code more manageable and support more centralized security methods.
  • Perform ongoing code and data administration.


  • Operating Systems: Linux (Redhat, Suse, Ubuntu, Debian, OEL), Windows Server 2008-2016, HP-UX, AIX, Solaris, Toshiba (IBM) 4690
  • Infrastructure As Code: git, Terraform, Terragrunt, Packer, Vagrant
  • Monitoring: Prometheus, Grafana, Loki, ELK (Elasticsearch, Logstash, and Kibana), Nagios, VMWare vRealize Operations
  • Virtualization/Containerization: Kubernetes, Docker, Vmware vSphere/ESXi, LXC, KVM
  • Programming Languages: Shell Scripting, Python, Perl, PHP, Java, SQL
  • Applications: Ansible, Apache, BEA WebLogic, CFEngine, Chef, MySQL, , PostgreSQL, Puppet, Redis, Subversion,
  • Cluster: HP ServiceGuard, Veritas Cluster/File System
  • Network: F5 Local Traffic Manager, OpenSSL, iptables, PXELinux, dhpcd, tftp, Squid Web Caching, Cacti, Wireshark/tcpdump, Nagios, Cisco IOS, Palo Alto Firewall
  • Storage/Backup: EMC Clariion, Netapp, Pure, Veritas Netbackup
  • Cloud: Alibaba Cloud, Amazon AWS, Google Cloud, Microsoft Azure



BS In Computer Information Systems

  • 3.76 Cumulative GPA
  • Participated in the Honors Program