Chef today announced a series of metrics and features showing their support of and success as a result of what they call the shift to Web-Scale IT. As the picture below shows the Web-scale IT era has given rise to an exponentially larger, more scalable IT infrastructure.
What is Web-sclae IT? According to Chef:
Web-scale IT brings the practices of large, web innovators into every business
- Web-oriented architecture
- Cloud capable including hybrid
- Commodity hardware
- Open source software
- DevOps practices
But I don’t want to give the impression that Web-scale IT is a Chef invention. Actually it is Gartner that is providing a lot of the analysis on the key drivers here and forecasting its heightened importance in IT. From a recent press release from Gartner:
By 2017, Web-scale IT will be an architectural approach found operating in 50 percent of global enterprises, up from less than 10 percent in 2013, according to Gartner, Inc. Web-scale IT is a pattern of global-class computing that delivers the capabilities of large cloud service providers within an enterprise IT setting by rethinking positions across several dimensions.
Barry Crist, CEO of Chef said, “Today, every business is a software business. Customers everywhere expect delightful and immediate services. Meeting these expectations is only possible through the speed, scale, and consistency provided by employing web-scale IT. Chef’s IT automation platform packages the success patterns of web innovators and delivers them to the enterprise,”
Here are some of the elements or patterns of Web-Scale IT:
Having been through so many IT adoption cycles (I remember the big move to client/server), I am always weary of any new “paradigm changing” scenarios. If they were all true I would have retired an Internet millionaire back in the first dotcom bubble. However, what Chef is calling out here is certainly supported by the facts. IT today because of the Cloud, Big Data, virtualization, mobility and more has fundamentally changed. Automation, agile and lean principles are enabling the leveraging of these technologies more every day.
Companies like Chef are capitalizing on these trends by providing solutions that both leverage and enable Web-scale IT. It is hard to argue with the numbers from Chef:
- 182% Incremental Revenue Growth YoY
- 100% New Enterprise Customer Growth YoY
- Over 700 paying customers
- 70% of total Sales to F1000
- 600,000 Chef downloads per month
- 55,000 Registered Chef Community members
- Millions of Managed Instances
As part of the announcement around their momentum Chef also announced some new product features. From their press release:
– New Analytics Platform, Acquisition of Tower 3: Chef’s new analytics platform provides full visibility into all activity on the Chef server and lays the foundation for audit and compliance capabilities. Chef recently acquired big data and analytics startup Tower3, adding significant engineering resources and expertise to its ongoing analytics development efforts. Now available to Chef subscribers is the new Chef action log, which publishes notifications on who is changing what on the Chef server and allows administrators to track cookbook usage, roles, environments, and changes to infrastructure, all through an easy-to-use dashboard.
– Test-Driven Infrastructure: Test-driven infrastructure ensures maximum IT safety and consistency with programmatic and automated testing of the entire stack. Chef is the first company to offer its customers commercial support for test-driven infrastructure. Chef has also created a single installation package – Chef DK – for the open source tools covering the entire test and development workflow, from the workstation all the way to production. Rally Software is among a range of enterprise customers using Chef for a test-driven approach to infrastructure and applications (see separate release).
– End-to-End Container Workflow Automation: Chef is the first automation platform to deliver end-to-end management of container workflows. Chef Container is a build of the Chef Client that integrates with all Linux containers (LXC), including Docker, to enable seamless management of container resources. In conjunction with Chef Container, Chef is also releasing a Knife Plugin-in for Docker integration with Chef Container, enabling users to launch, configure and manage Docker containers. Together, Chef’s new suite of container tools and content fully automate the creation, management, monitoring and testing of containers, making them versionable, testable, and repeatable within a production workflow.
If you are interested in learning more about Web-scale IT, Chef have also released a white paper: “Automation and Web-Scale IT”
All very impressive from Chef. But I don’t want to convey the idea that Chef is the only success in Web-scale IT or DevOps. Other companies like Puppet Labs, Saltstack, StackDriver, Ansibile, etc. are all experiencing rapid growth by riding the Web-scale IT express. Behind them are a host (no pun intended) of new startups that are offering solutions in this area. Maybe this time we really are seeing a paradigm shift.
In the meantime congratulations to Chef on some phenomenal growth numbers. For those of you who have made it to the bottom here, how is Web-scale IT changing your life?