New solutions engine

Posted on

Whenever we detect outdated and/or unsupported software on your setup, we provide solutions. These solutions come in the form of a “card”, these so-called solution cards then lead you to a guide through the “Let’s fix it” button. A quick example of a solution card that will pop up when your PHP installation is outdated, and requires an update to a newer version:

Imagine the following situation: You got a server running two Drupal instances, both are outdated and will be detected by the system. Our system then generates those solution cards, but what happens next was not something that kept us busy during the first version of PatrolServer development.

Until now, we have fully rewritten our solutions engine from scratch. The current engine is not only faster, but is written with a dynamic way of thinking (think of a certain “what if”, and we’ll be able to generate a solutions card without digging up the current code and making changes).

Grouped solution cards

I’ll best explain this with an example: You got composer running (yup, we now support composer modules through our bash scanner), and the system detects that 4 out of the 7 modules are outdated (and/or no longer supported). However, updating those requires a single command to run: composer update. We now group cards based on the solution. If several different software versions can be updated with the same solution, only one solution card will be provided. It will look like this:

Cards are aware of the installation paths

The solution cards will now provide you with the detection path (if we were able to detect it, currently only through the bash scanner).

Let’s take our previous example, two Drupal instances on different paths will generate two cards, as you got to update both of them.

Bash Scanner

This is probably the biggest change, we designed a client that we called “bash scanner”. It’s open-sourced on Github. When you install bash scanner on your Linux distro, it will detect your currently installed software together with the versions and sends them over to our server. The server then checks if anything is outdated, and reports back.

For those who feel like creating an account during the installation process of bash scanner, that’s also possible (and is highly advised to make use of our daily scanning process).

Until next time.