Review Category : Blogs

Infrastructure automation and API taxes

That automation is one of the critical components of DevOps is apparent in numerous surveys and studies that focus on the benefits organizations have realized from implementing the approach across operational groups. Automation itself starts with (or should start with) a comprehensive API. That means infrastructure – network and application focused – needs to expose via an API the myriad configuration options it requires as well as optional features it offers. It is through these APIs, after all, that integration between devices and systems and across operational groups occurs. The much vaunted SDN or cloud “ecosystem”  is really a euphemism for pre-packaged and validated integration. Integration that occurs via an API. These same APIs are available to everyone, of course, and lay a foundation to operationalize app deployments by automating the various provisioning and configuration tasks required to move an app from dev to production. APIs allow for fine-grained automation and ...

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The Conundrum of Adopting DevOps within Organizational Constraints

I wish I had a dollar for each time I’ve now heard, “we’re adopting DevOps, but we have to operate within the constraints of what the business is ready to accept.” Basically, this is becoming the battle cry of many enterprise IT professionals that are DevOps believers, but are stuck with the limitations of operating within a complex, political and immovable business structure. One on hand, it is very pragmatic to approach adoption of new methods, techniques, technologies, etc. on a small scale and then expand based upon success. However, what is the result of a DevOps initiative in which existing organizational constraints and bottlenecks continue to remain in place? If you’ve been in the business world for more than a few years you’ve probably already had the experience of having a really good idea only to come to the realization that implementation of that idea requires cooperation of another ...

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Closing the Gap Between Database Continuous Delivery and Code Continuous Delivery

The most important feedback I get about the current state of database delivery is directly from the DBAs I meet with. Their DevOps teams are stuck in manual database delivery purgatory. Development managers just want the database delivery to work like their software delivery already does. However, databases are a different beast altogether. Unfortunately, DevOps for Database has taken a back seat to source code, as we see the tools and methodologies perfected, leaving database automation to play a game of catch up. Another issue is that DBAs don’t trust deployment automation like code developers do. All DBAs have been burned by breakdowns or conflicts at one point or another, and most of them just feel they need to take matters into their own hands to ensure the release is done right. We recently surveyed over 200 DBAs, and the largest percentage of them noted mistrust of automation as the ...

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Transforming applications with Cloud and DevOps – one hybrid solution for multiple challenges

Are you on cloud yet or clouded? The answer lies in how you have adopted the transformation. Today, the world is Hybrid. For large enterprises and organizations, it always has been. Almost no enterprise is monolithic when it comes to their environments. They may already have different distributed environments and/or mainframes in their ecosystem. The advent of cloud has only added to this complexity and hybrid nature of the environments. Enterprises which have replaced their datacenter with cloud adoption, in some cases are unable to do so completely or even adopt a singular cloud solution as that remains the domain of born-on-the-web companies that started on the cloud (think Netflix) or started on physical servers and migrated very early to the cloud (think WhatsApp). You cannot think of a big bank or even a telecom giant that is a Cloud Service Provider (CSP) that fits this bill. For the typical ...

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IBM DevOps Webcast Nov 20 – Transforming Application Delivery for Continuous Innovation

What if you could deliver applications faster without compromising quality or accepting higher risk? Fast-moving adopters of technology are transforming software delivery to disrupt entire industries with rapid-fire, digital innovations that leverage cloud, mobile, big data and social. How do you deliver 10-times faster business innovation instead of 10 percent incremental improvement? New and established companies are using DevOps to transform their software delivery process and are achieving dramatic improvements in overall speed, quality and business satisfaction. Join executives from GE Capital, Forrester Research, IBM and others for a series of lightning talks with real experiences and best practices. Learn how you can adopt DevOps practices that deliver early wins and transform your application delivery process. Date: Thursday, November 20th, 2014 Time:  8:30 – 9.30 AM Eastern Standard Time Registration link: http://bit.ly/14z82GS   Speakers Snehal Antani – CIO & Chief Architect, GE Capital Americas Kurt Bittner – Principal Analyst, Forrester ...

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What is DevOps and Why Should CIOs Care?

Like the buzz-phrase: “cloud” or “big data”, DevOps is the new flavour of the month within the IT industry.   You’ve probably heard of it by now – but many CIOs and heads of IT have not got to grips with what it is and are therefore reluctant to let developers take ownership and run their own operations. A recent survey found that 23 per cent of respondents were not familiar with the term DevOps, and another 17 per cent thought it was all hype. DevOps is a method for improving the performance of the entire IT group.  It is aimed at creating a better set of joined up IT outcomes for the business.  As a methodology, DevOps allows all IT functions and activities, from cradle to grave, to be integrated into a seamless whole.  It is an IT engineering philosophy and discipline that sees each part of the IT activity ...

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USENIX LISA 2014 – DevOps grows in the enterprise

I just returned to frigid Boulder, CO from the USENIX LISA 2014 conference in sunny (not warm, but completely tolerable) Seattle, WA. For those unaware, LISA is the Large Infrastructure System Administration conference, which held its inaugural conference in 1986. A lot has changed in the past 28 years, but LISA continues to demonstrate (and serve) the need for members of large organizations to meet to share and learn the latest techniques, methods, and technologies. One might even venture to say that LISA is a conference that could be unaffected by new technologies and methodologies: until systems and networks can completely manage themselves, it seems highly likely that we won’t arrive at the grand unification methodology for systems administration, nor will we run out of new technologies. Interest in DevOps on the show floor was somewhat limited based on my many conversations. Some were true converts preaching to create DevOps converts ...

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Build security into your app development

Integrate security testing into your dev process now or else face cyber-attacks later The way we develop software has been radically transformed in the last few years. Agility and speed are vital components for any company that wants to compete in the market. In order to achieve that it has proven necessary to break down barriers. The idea of separate silos with developers, operations, testers, and management working in isolation, sometimes even in opposition, is dated and flawed. We’ve accepted the logic of bringing development and operations together with the DevOps movement. The recognition that testing is required earlier in the process has come. Now it’s time to apply the same logic to security. It’s time to bring InfoSec into the fold. The security threat Trends like cloud computing, big data, SaaS, and the BYOD end of the mobile revolution have created new opportunities for increased efficiency and productivity, but ...

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Expanding DevOps Beyond Dev and Ops

I’ve been involved in software delivery for longer than I care to admit, and since DevOps has come onto the scene I’ve witnessed the deconstruction of silos that were once actively built to contain separate projects and team functions. Central to this deconstruction is collaboration between Dev and Ops, ushering in new innovation paradigms. What’s exciting is that in just the past five years since DevOps has started permeating organizations, other areas within the enterprise—including technical and marketing teams—have started to recognize the high-value that comes from embracing collaborative tools and processes. DevOps has quickly evolved from sideline projects to a state of mind rapidly adopted by leading companies across various business units. DevOps and Culture Accompanying this notion of greater collaboration and cross-silo participation is the need for new tools to help facilitate the pace of change and collaboration. Although there are no silver bullets, you can take steps ...

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DevOps with purpose: ACT-ing with greater agility

This is Part Four in a four-part series. In Part One, I focused on the critical first step of defining DevOps with a purpose by thinking about DevOps in the context of your organization’s applications. In Part Two, I provided four tips to fostering a DevOps culture in your organization. In Part Three, I discussed the role of tools and how they can amplify (or constrain) individual and team abilities as well as work across teams. In this final fourth part of the series, I’m going to weave the three previous topics of (A)pplications, (C)ulture, and (T)ools together and will show how you can ACT with purpose to start your own DevOps transformation. Your DevOps strategy should incorporate all three aspects of applications, culture, and tools. Given the breadth of those three areas, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed from the start. Here’s a tip I learned from a mentor a ...

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