Robert Polasek, DevOps Engineer and Developer in Toronto, ON, Canada
Robert Polasek

DevOps Engineer and Developer in Toronto, ON, Canada

Member since May 21, 2018
Robert is a senior infrastructure and DevOps engineer with over 20 years of experience in Unix/Linux system administration, server automation, programming, development, storage area networks, networking, and security. In addition, for the past seven years, he has worked as a SAN administrator. Robert is exceptionally professional and joined Toptal to work on innovative projects with exceptional talents.
Robert is now available for hire


  • Rhithm, Inc.
    Apache JMeter, Helm, AWS Cloud Computing Services, Terraform, Terragrunt
  • Stainless AI
    DNS, Amazon EKS, Helm, Terraform, AWS
  • Helpful Human
    Jenkins, OpenVPN, AWS Certificate Manager, Amazon EKS, Terraform, AWS



Toronto, ON, Canada



Preferred Environment

AWS, GitHub, Jenkins, Kubernetes, Docker, Linux

The most amazing...

...thing I've designed and implemented was a Jenkins CI/CD pipeline using DSL and Groovy scripts.


  • DevOps Consultant

    2020 - PRESENT
    Rhithm, Inc.
    • Developed infrastructure as a code using Terragrunt with Terraform while applying a fully modularized approach. Built networking infrastructure, EKS (Kubernetes) clusters, and relational databases in AWS as a code.
    • Developed and deployed Helm charts to Kubernetes using Helmfile as a declarative configuration for deploying distributions of Helm charts while adhering to 12-factor application principles. Build Dockerfiles for containerizing the application. Deployed infrastructure containers as an external DNS, used cert-manager and Ingress Controller to automate dynamic DNS name registration, and created auto SSL certificate provisioning and assigned them to external endpoints.
    • Load-tested the application with jMeter using different scenarios, ensuring that it met the requirements for a number of concurrent users performing various workflows. Worked with developers to identify and address bottlenecks.
    • Developed CI/CD pipelines using serverless Jenkins X controlled by a GitOps build. Deployed in Cloud Native.
    Technologies: Apache JMeter, Helm, AWS Cloud Computing Services, Terraform, Terragrunt
  • DevOps Consultant

    2020 - 2020
    Stainless AI
    • Developed infrastructure as code using Terraform combining third-party modules with client-specific code. Deployed the infrastructure in Amazon cloud, debugged all issues, and wrote the deployment documentation.
    • Developed a Python script to automate the input value file build as well as a Terraform module and workspace initialization.
    • Created a local Minikube environment to imitate the AWS cloud environment with a local dynamic DNS server. Used MetalLB as the load balancer, an external DNS for DNS record updates, and cert-manager for auto-provisioning SSL certificates, allowing the Helm chart to be deployed to the cloud and locally.
    • Built Helm charts for the deployment of Kubernetes services as an EFS persistent volume provisioner, Ingress Controller, external DNS, as well as charts for JupyterHub and client-specific services interconnected with JupyterHub.
    • Deployed a certification manager configured with Let's Encrypt SSL certificates for DNS domains and their ongoing management.
    Technologies: DNS, Amazon EKS, Helm, Terraform, AWS
  • DevOps Consultant

    2019 - 2020
    Helpful Human
    • Developed Terraform code for a Kubernetes infrastructure build. Managed it using Kops for Kubernetes. Debugged issues and integrated Kubernetes with ECR and Amazon Route 53.
    • Designed a Helm chart and created an in-house built application using Golang. Debugged and troubleshot gRPC.
    • Developed Helm charts for infrastructure services inside Kubernetes for dynamic DNS names in Amazon Route 53. Created an SSL certificate on demand for Ingress endpoints and a persistent volume controller for EFS and Ingress Controller.
    • Built a Jenkins X CI/CD pipeline for container builds and deployments with a GitOps-controlled pipeline.
    Technologies: Jenkins, OpenVPN, AWS Certificate Manager, Amazon EKS, Terraform, AWS
  • DevOps Consultant

    2018 - 2020
    IFDS (International Financial Data Services)
    • Designed, installed, and troubleshot OpenShift cluster, migration from version 3.4 to 3.11.
    • Created dynamic Jenkins CI/CD pipelines running all the master and worker nodes as containers within an OpenShift cluster where each stage was represented by its own parametrized docker image tailored for a specific purpose, e.g., Nexus for artifact storage and retrieval, Sonarqube for code quality checking, Twistlock for vulnerability scanning, and so on.
    • Designed and installed Hashicorp vault for secret management. Secrets required for applications’ run are retrieved from a vault at a container's startup time and automatically renewed during the lifecycle of the application. Composed a vault auto-configuration script featuring auto unseal upon startup using transit secret from the master vault, LDAP configuration for user authentication, initial root token revocation. The vault runs on Openshift as a cluster of API nodes with consul clusters as a back end. The initial deployment is fully automated with a recovery token being uploaded into the master vault. Such vault cluster function separation allows simple segregation of duties where one team has access to recovery secrets but cannot access actual secrets and the other teams can only see a subset of secrets.
    • Developed health check liveliness and readiness probes for a JBoss cluster (Wildfly) to automate OpenShift corrective actions in situations that the node hosting pod is under memory pressure or high load, testing probes using techniques introducing network failures and delays and memory starvation.
    • Debugged Helm tiller code—identifying issues with security context constraint deployment in OpenShift version 3.4.
    • Built Docker images with built-in configuration initialization at startup, e.g.m Nexus docker image with Groovy scripts to fully initialize configuration upon the first startup and retain it on subsequent starts of the same container.
    • Deployed a Helm API to be used as means of deploying helm charts by third-party applications.
    • Implemented MetalLB with dynamic DNS as the auto-provisioning solution for load balancer on bare metal.
    • Implemented Helm deployment profiling, identifying system bottlenecks during larger deployments.
    • Debugged and profiled OpenShift performance by identifying performance bottlenecks on bare metal.
    • Expanded Heketi Go code that handles volume deletion, deleting volume snapshots prior to the volume itself.
    • Installed and configured an automated Gluster provisioner with Heketi using storage classes based provisioning.
    • Installed and integrated JFrog with a CI/CD pipeline.
    • Created Helm deployment chart for automated storage provisioner to auto-provision storage in Minishift.
    Technologies: SonarQube, Docker, JBoss, Vault, HashiCorp, GlusterFS, Nexus, Helm, OpenShift
  • DevOps Consultant

    2019 - 2019
    2DA Analytics
    • Developed infrastructure as a code using Terraform with a modular approach, deployed infrastructure in Amazon cloud, performed migration of on-premise resources into the cloud and debugged all migration issues in the cloud.
    • Built Hashicorp packer code for OpenVPN AMI with user authentication against AWS accounts.
    • Developed Helm charts for the containerized version of the application running on-premise, deployed it to EKS Kubernetes.
    • Deployed OpenVPN into EKS with self-service ca certification authority using corporate central authentication.
    • Deployed a certification manager configured with Let's Encrypt SSL certificates for DNS domains and their ongoing management.
    Technologies: Packer, HashiCorp, DNS, OpenVPN, Amazon EKS, Terraform, AWS
  • DevOps Consultant

    2019 - 2019
    • Developed Grafana dashboards for all containerized environments with intention for dashboards to dynamically scale with the environments without need for any dashboard code changes. Used templated dashboards as well as a boom table panel to achieve the goal.
    • Wrote customized Prometheus queries to retrieve data. Made changes to Prometheus collectors and filters ensuring all relevant data are passed into Grafana.
    • Handled the Rancher creation of services, deployment of services, and troubleshooting of issues.
    • Made changes to docker images allowing to see host level disk devices and gather their metrices by Prometheus.
    Technologies: Rancher, Prometheus, Grafana
  • DevOps Engineer

    2016 - 2018
    Stagwell Technologies
    • Built, deployed, and managed eight large Kubernetes clusters for development, user acceptance testing (UAT), and production environments with 25 nodes per cluster and load based horizontal autoscaling.
    • Implemented Jenkins as a continuous delivery tool using Groovy, DSL, pipelines, and Kubernetes running Jenkins slaves on demand.
    • Provisioned AWS and Azure services and resources using Terraform (EC2, EBS, S3, VPC, Auto Scaling, Cloud Formation, Elastic Load Balancing, RDS, Route 53, Memcache, Redis, OpsWorks, CloudWatch, CloudTrail, Identity and Access Management (IAM), SQS, Redshift, Lambda Functions, Beanstalk, Batch, Elastic Container Service, Fargate, and Firehose).
    • Migrated VMware servers into AWS and Azure Cloud, using VMware OVF and Hypervisor VHD images.
    • Designed Chef cookbooks to manage configurations and automate the installation process using the OpsWorks framework.
    • Build resources on GCP to utilize machine learning capabilities of the platform.
    • Deployed central logging to a Kibana server using Elasticsearch as a storage engine.
    • Configured a Gluu IAM server as a user authentication gateway for Kubernetes using OpenID.
    • Built a NeoDB database for all the resources in AWS, all the repositories in GitHub, all jobs in Jenkins, and all containers in Kubernetes and their relationships with continuous updates using Mercator code as a framework.
    Technologies: OpenID, Chef, Azure, AWS, Packer, HashiCorp, Vault, Elasticsearch, Jenkins, Hortonworks Data Platform (HDP), Hadoop, Helm, Kubernetes Operations (Kops), Terraform, Kubernetes, Docker, Linux
  • DevOps Engineer

    2017 - 2017
    TD Bank
    • Developed TOSCA blueprints and also deployed them to OpenStack.
    • Built Jenkins CI/CD pipelines in Groovy to automate code releases and updates of Confluence pages through a REST API.
    • Wrote Python scripts to interact with APIs for automated deployments.
    • Created a JBoss blueprint; also installed, configured and troubleshot JBoss.
    Technologies: Groovy, JBoss, Jenkins, Blueprints, OpenStack
  • DevOps Consultant, Architect

    2014 - 2016
    Bank of Montreal
    • Designed, deployed, and configured Red Hat Satellite Server 6 (RHS6) and migrated 670 servers from RHS5 to RHS6.
    • Designed and built a Puppet infrastructure for configuration management of 700+ servers.
    • Created provisioning processes utilizing RHS6 with Puppet and coded supporting build classes and facts.
    • Managed Solaris and Red Hat enterprise servers (700+ servers).
    • Performed a difficult root cause analysis and debugged problems on the level of system library calls.
    Technologies: JBoss, WebSphere, VMware, Red Hat Satellite, Red Hat Linux, Puppet
  • Senior Consultant

    2011 - 2013
    Resmor Trust (Royal Bank of Canada)
    • Managed RHEL Linux servers, Hitachi modular storage, Hitachi Virtual Storage Platform (VSP), Brocade FC switches, VMware ESX servers, and F5 load balancers.
    • Designed, installed, and configured Hitachi AMS 2300 and associated SAN components.
    • Built a Kickstart server for automated Linux builds with a PXE boot.
    • Designed and implemented the encapsulation of Oracle RAC cluster into a Linux HA cluster ensuring high availability of all Oracle failover components and ETL applications.
    • Migrated Oracle RAC 11G to a new storage frame.
    Technologies: CFEngine, Hitachi HPLC, VMware, Red Hat Linux
  • Senior Unix, SAN Consultant

    2009 - 2011
    Intria Items | CIBC
    • Managed Solaris, HP-UX, AIX, and Linux servers (200+ servers).
    • Planned and executed a physical storage migration (25 terabytes) from Montreal to Markham with minimal downtime.
    • Worked on the application design and implementation using virtualization technologies as LDOMs, Solaris zones, and HP VMware.
    • Managed and implemented improvements to cluster technologies such as HP ServiceGuard and Veritas cluster server.
    Technologies: VMware, LDoms, SAN Switches, SAN Brocade, IBM SAN, Storage, Linux, HP-UX, AIX, Solaris


  • A Jenkins Automated Job Creation Framework with Kubernetes Containers as Slaves (Development)

    I designed, coded, and maintained a Jenkins job creation framework using Groovy, DSL, and Jenkins pipelines. The framework allowed easy configuration and deployment of new jobs as well as fast bulk changes of existing jobs. The pipeline incorporated Hashicorp vault as a central secure storage to be used for Jenkins configuration and job builds. Kubernetes containers were used as slaves for builds, where each step of a build process was defined as a docker image, allowing us to easily build on the same source code using different tools or ensure that the versions remain same through the lifecycle of the product.


  • Tools

    Chef, Puppet, Jenkins, Veritas Cluster Server, AWS ECS, GitLab CI/CD, Terraform, Kibana, Grafana, VMware, GitHub, Helm, Vault, HashiCorp, Packer, Red Hat Satellite, Hitachi HPLC, Amazon EKS, OpenVPN, SonarQube, Apache JMeter
  • Platforms

    Docker, Linux, Kubernetes, Solaris, HP-UX, Red Hat OpenShift, Amazon Web Services (AWS), Oracle, Hortonworks Data Platform (HDP), Red Hat Linux, WebSphere, JBoss, OpenStack, Rancher, OpenShift, Nexus, AWS Cloud Computing Services, AIX, Azure, Google Cloud Platform (GCP)
  • Other

    Kubernetes Operations (Kops), ShellScript, SCM Engineer, Autoscaling, Cloud, Networks, Groovy Scripting, AWS, Storage, IBM SAN, SAN Brocade, SAN Switches, LDoms, Blueprints, Prometheus, DNS, AWS Certificate Manager
  • Languages

    Java, Perl, C, Python, Groovy, HTML
  • Frameworks

    Hadoop, CFEngine
  • Libraries/APIs

    Jenkins Job DSL, OpenID, Terragrunt
  • Storage

    MySQL, PostgreSQL, GlusterFS, Cassandra, Elasticsearch


  • Master's degree in Computers and Electronics
    1989 - 1994
    Brno University of Technology, Department of Computers and Electronics - Brno, Czech Republic


  • Hitachi Data Systems Certified Professional
  • Sun Solaris 10 Certified System Administrator
    Sun Microsystems
  • Oracle Certified Professional
  • Sun Solaris 9 Certified System Administrator
    Sun Microsystems
  • HP-UX 11 Certified System Administrator
  • Check Point Firewall I Administrator
    Check Point
  • HP-UX 10.20 Certified System Administrator

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