The absence of versioned infrastructure as code (IaC) and automated provisioning undermines one of the most important benefits of DevOps: the ability to version, manage, and control the servers and networking required to run software applications in development, testing, and production. Automating infrastructure setup and continuous monitoring helps keep system environments stable and less susceptible to outages.
The dream of any product owner is fully customizable production software without the expense of the hardware it rests upon. While not completely free of infrastructure, serverless infrastructure significantly reduces overhead costs by abstracting away physical hosting, physical security, server maintenance, and OS patching. Here's what you need to know to decide if serverless infrastructure is right for you.
Balancing time-to-market pressures with regulatory needs and business continuity demands is a challenge for highly regulated large enterprises. Automating processes and mastering proven practices of release management makes developing and releasing software predictable, reliable, and repeatable.
A decade ago, continuous integration became a key practice to support the agile process. Now, the hot topic is continuous delivery, and Pini Reznik has noticed many similarities between the adoption of CD today and the implementation of CI. You can learn a lot from past experiences.
In most software engineering organizations, development and test labs continuously demand regular computer, storage, and networking infrastructure upgrades and continuous support. Lab administrators have moved toward server consolidation powered by virtualization platforms from vendors such as Citrix, Microsoft, and VMware, often accompanied by a management layer called virtual lab automation (VLA). Together, virtualization and VLA enable the lab to operate as a private, on-premise cloud. While this solves some problems, there are still other challenges to consider. Some test labs now leverage public cloud infrastructures such as Amazon Web Services. Jacob Ben-David reviews virtual labs enabled in private, public, and hybrid clouds, and explains how they improve development, build, and test processes.
Traditionally, testing IT applications is done in isolation on a stand-alone platform. However, when applications interface with the corporate IT infrastructure, you need to plan, engineer, and execute an additional level of integration testing. David Watt describes a typical IT infrastructure and the historical problems, costs, and complexities of conducting infrastructure integration testing. Because of the complexities common to many IT infrastructures, this level of testing is often ignored and omitted. David explains how enhancements to testing techniques and test process management can remediate many of these complexities and make infrastructure integration testing possible. David introduces the concept of an Enterprise Test Bed and explains how strict management techniques can make this resource a reality for your infrastructure integration testing.
Automation tools are often viewed as a cure-all that will instantly reduce test cost and effort. However, without up-front planning and infrastructure design, automated tests can quickly become difficult to create and maintain, and the tools nothing more than expensive shelf ware. This paper describes how to initiate a successful automation effort by developing standards and processes for automation and an infrastructure designed for success.
Bill Boehmer and Bea Patterson, Siemens Building Technologies, Inc.