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Who is Tracy Reed?

I am a Linux enthusiast, a multi-engine instrument-rated pilot, and a traveller. I am interested in all aspects of computing and technology in general, especially Linux and Free Software. As an avid pilot I can be found somewhere over the skies of the southwestern US most weekends.  As a traveller I have been to many interesting places. Check out my photo gallery. Want to get me something cool? Check out my wish list!



The Resume of Tracy R Reed, RHCE


Fifteen years of experience in Infrastructure Architecture and Linux system administration. Building massively scalable, secure (PCI DSS compliant), and reliable computing infrastructure. I have used many programming languages over the years but Python is what I am most proficient with at the moment. I have extensive experience with VOIP and Asterisk and have saved companies tens of thousands by designing custom phone systems. I also architected and deployed several Xen-AoE virtualizaton cluster systems and have extensively used cluster/cloud computing systems such as Amazon S3/EC2. I have taken PCI DSS compliance projects from having not even a firewall to full compliance.

Confidential Security Clearance

How much Linux experience do I have? Just put this into your web browser:

I subscribe to The System Administrators' Code of Ethics.

Recent Accomplishments

  • Saved my employer a documented $300,000 over previous budget in one year by making prudent IT decisions.
  • Re-designed flagship Linux distro based software product to be more maintainable and standards compliant with online patches/updates saving the product's future.
  • Designed and deployed IP-SAN/Virtualization system to provide high availability and cost savings two times.
  • Wrote company intranet web portal with blog/wiki/RSS/custom apps for collaboration
  • Built call center phone system using Asterisk saving the company $50,000 over other phone system

Keywords: Xen, AoE, Redhat Enterprise Linux, Fedora, CentOS, Python, SQL, MySQL, Postfix, Zope, Plone, Asterisk, Bacula, SER, Linux Virtual Server, Linux high-availability (heartbeat), Dovecot, Courier-IMAP, Apache, Nagios, Shell, Kickstart, BIND, DNS, SSL, DHCP, Shorewall firewall, OpenLDAP, LTSP, Zenoss, Infrastructure Architect, Director of IT, problem-solving and decision making skills, oral and written communication, recruiting, retention, leadership.

Employment History

July 2008 - Present

Director of Engineering for a disk storage appliance company. Led the team which transformed old unsupportable software distribution into a maintainable piece of software. Implemented new automated distribution build system. Migrated to new distributed version control system. Built company intranet for collaboration.

April 2007 - July 2008

Director of IT for Interactivate Inc., an Internet marketing and website design firm. Lead the system administration team and IT department in transforming a very messy and unreliable environment with a long history of trouble into a consistent and highly reliable system while saving a documented $300,000 and providing the company with their best year ever for the IT department. Designed and deployed highly available services and clusters including highly available yet cost effective Xen virtualization with AoE SAN. Migrated critical company services into a new and more reliable datacenter. Implemented configuration management policies, improved network monitoring, wrote documentation, and mentored system administrators. Migrated away from costly proprietary technologies towards open and in-house supportable technologies and nurtured technical skill development within the company.

March 2006 - April 2007

Senior System Administrator, an online fashion clothing retailer. Build reliable and scalable infrastructure to keep the orders coming in. Using vision and foresight saw the company through a 70% growth year while building out new offices, new datacenters, and moving the companies web, mail, database, and numerous other servers to a highly available and cost-efficient virtualized environment which maximizes return on hardware investment by designing and implementing a very custom and unique architecture using Xen with AoE SAN backend. Built a call center phone system which handled 30 customer service agents during the busy Christmas season and is capable of handling many more while doing call distribution, recording, IVR, etc. using the Asterisk PBX and integrated it with three office locations around the US with a PRI (T-1) and external VOIP provider. Implemented system and network monitoring, logfile analysis, cfengine system configuration, and generally adhered to the best practices for building solid infrastructure advocated by which I believe strongly in. Deployed custom intranet website which included file sharing, blogging, and wiki which was used to document all of our systems and perform corporate collaboration and communication. Evaluated hardware and advised on purchasing decisions for server and network equipment. Successfully recruited new employees via novel means to work as developers and system administrators. Won the largest bonus awarded in the company for that year.

Nov 2002 - Present

Proprietor of Copilotco, a solution provider focused on Linux and open source software. Provide Linux related technical services all over Southern California and even as far as Hong Kong. Performed system design and implementation of Linux servers for firewall, email, virus scanning, file server, database systems. Install Linux based workstations for programmers, executives, administrative staff. Independently handled all sales, marketing, technical implementation of projects. Gave many sales presentations and closed the deals. Design easy to use web applications to interact with database systems to automate tasks, generate reports, etc. Design and install sophisticated virus and junkmail scanning email systems with feedback mechanism to allow for artificial intelligence spam scanner to work more accurately. Setup firewall systems with secure web proxy to restrict inbound and outbound access. Set up company communication and collaboration infrastructure such as wiki's and instant messaging platforms (Jabber/IRC/IM). Also conducted numerous training sessions to get the clients staff up to speed on their new systems.

January 2005 - August 2005

Deputy General Director Telepacket Vietnam Ltd./Director of Software Development Telepacket Inc. Transition company from a business model which consisted of arbitraging wholesale telephony traffic to a business model based on providing retail VOIP service to the public. Research and design VOIP infrastructure and convert office and existing systems to new VOIP platform. Established the concept of a residential and hosted PBX VOIP platform in the company using Asterisk and SER technologies to route and account for calls on the backend with a user friendly web interface on the front end. Went to live in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) Vietnam to establish remote office to handle basic programming tasks to implement the concept. Adapted to radically new environment and culture very rapidly. Arranged advertising in Vietnamese language periodicals in local markets, screened applicants, conducted interviews. Despite extremely challenging local job market situation (third world country completely lacking in any history or culture of computer use although advancing rapidly) and significant communications barriers (language barrier, 14 hour time difference with home office in US) managed to hire 12 people with sufficient knowledge of Linux, programming, and English language to handle programming and web design work who as of this date have produced hundreds of thousands of lines of code and a working prototype of the system. Assisted in software development effort by providing necessary infrastructure for the new location such as networking, servers, intra-net web/file server, VOIP phone system, source code repository/revision control using Subversion. Studied Vietnamese language and learned to speak a little basic Vietnamese (Toi noi mo.t chu't Tie'ng Vie.t).

April 2004 - January 2005

Proprietor of Copilot Communications. Providing VOIP services to small businesses. Specify and install on-site PBX systems as well as virtual PBX systems hosted in Copilot Communications data centers in San Diego and Los Angeles. Assess current telephony system (if any) strengths and weaknesses, determine customers needs, design install and configure a system which meets those needs. Provide ongoing customer support for the system. Write custom telephony applications such as IVR's that take customer input and store in a database. Designed website to present the data in reports. Interface PBX systems to traditional PSTN using T-1 and POTS hardware. Interface PBX systems using IAX, H323, SIP VOIP protocols.

Feb 1999 - Nov 2002

Senior Unix system administrator for Net USA Technologies (a subsidiary of Vivendi Universal). Involved in all aspects of enterprise computing and website operations. Helped transform tiny 10 employee company into a major force in the world of on-line music. Scaled website from 6 servers, and 100 Gigabytes of disk storage to thousands of servers, and over 100 Terabytes of disk storage. Installed, configured, and operated very large disk and tape backup systems. Maintained network security including installation and maintenance of firewalls and security policy. Installed gigabit network infrastructure. Used MySQL database to manage massive amounts of MP3 music and customer data. Supervision of very large banner ad server installation and data processing responsible for the majority of company revenue. Maintained critical email, DNS, http, database, and various other systems. Provide general Unix support to all departments. Install and maintain Linux and Solaris systems. In 1999 I recognized the need for a journalled filesystem in Linux, discovered ReiserFS, convinced to provide funding for the journalling portion of ReiserFS and implemented the use of the filesystem on over 500 systems saving the company tens of millions of dollars.

May 1997 - Feb 1999

Unix system administrator for Cast & Crew Inc. Administrate HP-UX, SCO, and Linux machines and network across the corporate LAN spanning 5 offices across the US and Canada. Maintain reliability and security of Unix systems in a mission critical financial environment, supporting staff, troubleshooting and preventative maintenance. Interaction with the UNIFY database system. Performance monitoring and tuning of database servers. Maintaining DNS, mail, and user accounts.

June 1996 - May 1997

Solaris and Linux system administrator for CyberWorks Inc, a web page publishing company. Primary responsibilities include ensuring reliability and security of Unix systems including Solaris and Linux, supporting staff and clients in all technical areas, maintaining the DNS, mail, mSQL and Oracle databases, and web server systems. Also did extensive CGI programming and HTML authoring.

October 1995 - June 1996

Assembled electronic hardware and wrote firmware for the PIC 1654 microprocessor for BestProto, a small engineering firm. Assisted in the development of a printed circuit board CAD system.

Summer 1995

Provided free Internet access to the Tehachapi valley through a non-profit organization called Tehachapi Birds Nest BBS. Duties included system administration and web page authoring. Installed a local Ethernet and full Internet services including SLIP.

September 1994 - May 1995

Used Autocad and CADCOM cable management package to keep a database of the campus telephone system configuration for the Telecommunications and Network Services department of San Diego State University. Primary responsibilities were using Autocad and the CADCOM cable management package to keep a database of the campus telephone system configuration.

Summer 1994

Developed the Air Force Academy liquid crystal polymer rocket motor for Wyle Inc. as a contractor to the US Air Force. This involved the hydrostatic burst testing of vessels made of liquid crystal polymers (a type of plastic) in an effort to predict the tensile strength of the material when injection molded. A personal computer was used to help make preliminary calculations of the burst pressure of the vessels. Coordinated the actual rocket motor firings which enabled us to determine the performance of the rocket motors and to identify design flaws. Molecular modeling of the molecules which make up the liquid crystal polymers was also done on a Silicon Graphics Iris.

Summers of 1990,91,92,93

Performed research on ammonium perchlorate (primary ingredient in most rocket propellants) for Phillips Laboratory, Edwards AFB. Attempted to produce a large, pure, ammonium perchlorate crystal to undergo tests to learn more about its structure and behavior. Tensile tested liquid crystal polymers and did a study on the effects of annealing on liquid crystal polymers. Learned how to use the Instron tensile testing machine and a great deal about mechanical properties testing. Analyzed and processed synchrotron spectroscopic data to determine the local chemical chlorine coordination of rocket propellant binding agents and of liquid crystal polymers. Developed rocket propellant formulations suited for use in liquid crystal polymer rocket motors. Coordinated, manufactured, and tested the properties of the propellant. Conducted the firing of small rocket motors to determine the specific impulse of the propellant and determine propellant and motor performance. Each summer an end of summer presentation was given and a paper was written detailing my progress during the summer and the results achieved. These papers were published in the Defense Technical Information Center.

References available upon request.

Other talents and affiliations

  • CA Cert assurer
  • Red Hat Certified Engineer
  • Hablo español mas o menos. Estudié español dos años en la preperatoria y he tenido muchas oportunidades de aprender de amigos y clientes. La mayoría de mi español es por habiendo tenido a muchos amigos Mexicanos.
  • Member of the Kernel-Panic Linux User Group since 1998. Have given dozens of presentations on a wide variety of technical subjects over the years.
  • Secretary of the Plus One Flyers flying club with over 900 members and managing approximately 50 aircraft at 4 airports.
  • Multi-engine Instrument rated Private Pilot (PP-AMEL-IA) currently flying every weekend out of Montgomery Field (MYF) in San Diego pursuing commercial, flight instructor, and seaplane ratings.
  • Member of Baja Bush Pilots, Airplane Owners and Pilots Association, Electronic Frontier Foundation, League of Professional System Administrators.
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