Review of Instant Apache Solr for Indexing Data How-to

This book starts with a good intention that the author defined, I mean he clearly points to what the book is done and the way in which the reader will travel.

One of the first things I liked is that the examples are on GitHub, this gives us the facility to have a feedback to the author. All examples have been carefully categorized according to the level of complexity, from simple to advanced.

It is amazing that Alexandre Rafalovitch (the author) has obviated the Solr installation process in the book, since it is a readily available resource and too trite in every book, not just for Solr, as many authors have dealt largely a chapter on this subject, while Alexandre tries to go straight to the heart of how to use Solr.

The author mentions also many tips and tricks for a quick fix common mistakes that can have as beginners, he has combined nicely presenting examples throughout the book with practical and useful tips.

I must congratulate Alexander for doing a great job, I’m usually very sharp to find errors in the book and in this I have not been able to do. This book has a lot of readability and comprehensibility, this is a key point to consider the book for learning Solr.


My preference for using Solr is not involved in my general appreciation for this book.


Bonzo: Minimalistic Python SMTP Proxy

In this week, I built Bonzo, a minismalistic SMTP Proxy built on top of Tornado.

The motivation was that in my current job, we need to do tests on email messages that are sent through our applications. It all started when I saw a GitHub repository that has the first component that we need: an SMTP server, I did a couple of tests and unfortunately I did not have good results, something that not convinced me was the inactivity of the project because it had more than 3 years without having maintenance –although it was not necessary because the protocol has not changed.

Then, a co-worker recommended me to review the smtpd module, and since I’m very stubborn in wanting to use Tornado for all… the next night I decided not to sleep until I have done an SMTP server with all that smtpd implemented based on the code repository that I found at the beginning.

The result was basically an implementation of smtpd to extend the Tornado’s TCPServer class. An example of how to use Bonzo is, as follow:


  • Authentication: Probably I will provide a method hook for verify the athentication and to derivate the responsability to a implementor’s logic.
  • TSL: I should to implement a way to support the STARTTLS command.
  • Unit tests!



About the name… I have selected “Bonzo” because it’s the nickname of the drummer of my favorite Rock band and the best world’s drummer.