Compuware today announced it is making it easier to shift application performance testing further left on to the shoulders of developers by adding support for a REST application programming interface (API) to its application performance management (APM) platform for mainframe applications, along with a plug-in for Jenkins continuous integration/continuous delivery (CI/CD) environments.
Sam Knutson, vice president of product management for Compuware, said during the current economic downturn brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, organizations will find it is now more imperative to shift more responsibility for managing all aspects of application development toward developers. Many organizations simply won’t be able to afford to retain IT specialists such as application testers, said Knutson.
Instead, most organizations soon will be looking to automate as many aspects of DevOps as they possibly can with an eye toward enabling developers to achieve goals with as little intervention as possible from IT operations teams, he noted.
In addition, Knutson said the trend of convergence between mainframe and distributed computing teams within IT organizations is about to accelerate. In fact, there may soon be no such thing as “mainframe DevOps,” he noted; rather, the mainframe will be just another mainstream platform on which applications are deployed.
The economic downturn may limit the number of new mainframes being deployed. However, given that the total cost of computing on the mainframe tends to be lower than distributed systems, the number of workloads running on existing mainframes could increase as organizations deploy more Linux-based applications on the venerable platform.
The API Compuware is adding to its Strobe APM platform will help accelerate the development and deployment of those applications by making application testing a more integrated element of a DevOps workflow, said Knutson. Automated tests can be run within the code delivery pipeline using Compuware Topaz for Total Test, the Topaz Utilities plugin or Compuware Hiperstation. Development teams can be notified when performance tests are completed via communications tools such as Slack and Microsoft Teams.
Knutson said Compuware decided to build a plug-in for Jenkins because it is the most widely deployed CI/CD platform in mainframe environments.
Despite the pending merger with BMC Software, IT organizations can count on the fact that the Compuware portfolio of DevOps tools for mainframe environments will continue to be supported and updated, he said, pointing out that this latest announcement represents the 22nd consecutive quarterly update to the Compuware portfolio of DevOps tools for mainframes.
It’s too early to say what precise impact the economic downturn may have on DevOps adoption in mainframe environments. However, it’s safe to say that doing more with less is going to be the order of the day for some time to come. As such, the rate at which IT organizations that rely on mainframes to run their mission-critical applications will be embracing best DevOps practices is likely to increase.
In fact, rather than incurring the costs of replacing those mainframe applications the priority now is much more likely to be modernizing them as much and as soon as possible.