18 Jan 2018, 19:44

New Blog!

My new year’s resolution for 2018 has been to blog more. So I decided to create an actual blog!

It started with me closing my Amazon AWS account and writing about it. The posting was up as a Gist on Github, and I shared that URL. This does give a useful viewer and the ability to add comments, but it is hardly discoverable. Anyway, the post was somewhat widely circulated (the provocative title certainly helped) and even made it to Reddit.

After deciding to create a real blog, I started looking into how to do that:

Now I finally have something up and running. The address is simple enough, and based on my Twitter handle:


In true Open Source tradition, the source code for the site is visible online at https://github.com/bsiegert/blog.

For now, I am quite happy with this setup.

The setup

  • Hugo with the purehugo theme,
  • Firebase Hosting,
  • domain at HostTech.

The site itself is created with the excellent Hugo, which has the added advantage of being written in Go :) The installation is as easy as

go get github.com/gohugoio/hugo

or by using the www/hugo package in pkgsrc. Hugo ends up creating a fully static web site, so simple static hosting is enough.

Google Cloud Storage supports hosting a static web site – that’s great, right? Well, not quite. There is no support for HTTPS in plain GCS. If you want HTTPS, apparently you need:

  1. The GCS bucket that holds the files,
  2. A Cloud Load Balancer instance in front
  3. Cloud CDN for delivering content from the edge.

Or, you can use Firebase Hosting, also by Google. This is what I am doing. A simple firebase deploy uploads all the static files, and an SSL certificate is included in the offer.

I tried using Google Domains to register the domain but that service is not available in Switzerland, unfortunately. hosttech.ch to the rescue! It took me a while to figure out that (a) a DNS zone for the domain is included and (b) how to add entries to it.

To get Firebase Hosting to serve directly on the domain, it is necessary to add a google-site-verification TXT record into the DNS for it. And that’s it.