Welcome!

DevOps Journal Authors: Elizabeth White, Aater Suleman, Sandi Mappic, Keith Mayer, Liz McMillan

Related Topics: Cloud Expo, Virtualization, DevOps Journal

Cloud Expo: Article

Rackspace Announces DevOps Automation Service

The DevOps Automation Service will enable developers and IT departments to accelerate time to market

Rackspace® Hosting (NYSE: RAX), the open cloud company, announced it is extending its Fanatical Support® to help customers automate their cloud infrastructure with a new managed support service for DevOps tools. The new DevOps Automation Service will help developers automate the process of deploying and scaling hybrid cloud infrastructure for fast-growing applications, while advancing the adoption of the DevOps methodology among software and IT teams.

The DevOps Automation Service will enable developers and IT departments to accelerate time to market for their products and features by allowing them to deploy, scale and test new configurations in hours rather than days. In addition, the service will help improve the quality of software deployments and to create more frequent software releases, as automating processes will allow organizations to provision servers consistently and free of mistakes typically caused by manual installation and configuration.

“Today's market demands the speed and efficiency of IT automation. Rather than sacrificing quality or uptime because of avoidable human errors, DevOps methodology and practices of agility and automation can reduce human interaction with code and infrastructure, allowing development and other teams to focus on their primary objectives and business,” said 451 Research Senior Analyst Jay Lyman. “This continuous deployment approach to infrastructure can accelerate release time and time-to-market for applications and features by reducing errors and test time and supporting DevOps processes."

“It’s hard to find, recruit and train DevOps talent, so our customers and prospects wanted us to provide the expertise they need to automate their own IT needs,” said Jonathan Siegel, product director, Rackspace. “The DevOps Automation Service is comprised of the same tools and best-practices that enabled Rackspace to launch 18 new cloud products, push code into production more than 2,500 times and run over 15,000 automated tests last year. These tools have had a significant and positive impact on our ability to execute and, through the service, we look to extend the same value to our customers.”

Benefits of the new DevOps Automation Service include:

  • Enhanced Infrastructure Automation – Enables customers to improve quality and velocity of software release, and to synchronize development and staging environments with production environment using configuration management tools such as Chef; collect application performance metrics (APM) to view code impact changes with application monitoring tools such as New Relic, statsD, Graphite, or Cloud Monitoring; build workflows to automate routine maintenance tasks using workflow automation tools such as Rundeck and Jenkins, aggregate logs from all devices to identify patterns and spot anomalies using log aggregation tools such as logstash; manage caching needs with tools such as Memcache, Varnish and more. Multi-server environments are now provisioned in minutes instead of the hours it previously took without automation tools.
  • Managed Services – Enables customers to focus on innovation and other tasks that add value to the business by allowing Rackspace to design, build, configure, monitor and optimize both the infrastructure, software stack and the automation tools.
  • Support for Linux-based technologies (Windows coming soon) – Supports DevOps tools up and down the stack, ranging from application and infrastructure monitoring to MongoDB and MySQL database support including PHP, Python, Ruby, Go, Java, Node.js, Ruby on Rails, Flask, Meteor, MySQL, MongoDB, Riak, Cassandra, Solr, Elasticsearch, Hadoop, MySQL, PostgreSQL, Memcache, Varnish, Redis, Cloud Monitoring, RabbitMQ, ActiveMQ and more.

The new DevOps Automation Service offering is built to help improve various phases of the application lifecycle. Customers in the Rackspace early access program are using the DevOps Automation Service to:

  • Enforce consistency – Customers are able to create identical development, staging, and testing environments based on same configurations.
  • Manage configurations – Customers are getting the right balance of base images and instance configuration at build time, simplifying image management and instance building across infrastructure types.
  • Manage change - Rackspace helps adhere to strict source control practices for customer environments so that any changes can always be audited, tracked and reversed if needed.
  • Respond to monitoring alerts - Rackspace configures the monitoring, manages the environment, and responds to alerts as they occur so that customers can focus on their application.

"Without this service, we would have to manage 24/7 operations, hire additional staff to perform critical work on our environment, and worry about whether our environments were always in sync with each other,” said Trevor White, chief technology officer, LeadOutcome. “With DevOps, we can take advantage of the extensive knowledge, best practices and experience Rackspace brings to the table. Having one company support both the infrastructure and the DevOps tools gives us more confidence that things will work the way we need them to work 100 percent of the time."

For more information about Rackspace’s DevOps Automation Service, please visit: http://www.rackspace.com/devops/.

About Rackspace
Rackspace® (NYSE: RAX) is the global leader in hybrid cloud and founder of OpenStack®, the open-source operating system for the cloud. Hundreds of thousands of customers look to Rackspace to deliver the best-fit infrastructure for their IT needs, leveraging a product portfolio that allows workloads to run where they perform best—whether on the public cloud, private cloud, dedicated servers, or a combination of platforms. The company’s award-winning Fanatical Support® helps customers successfully architect, deploy and run their most critical applications. Headquartered in San Antonio, TX, Rackspace operates data centers on four continents. Rackspace is featured on Fortune’s list of 100 Best Companies to Work For. For more information, visit www.rackspace.com.

Forward Looking Statements

This press release contains forward-looking statements that involve risks, uncertainties and assumptions. If such risks or uncertainties materialize or such assumptions prove incorrect, the results of Rackspace Hosting could differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements and assumptions. All statements other than statements of historical fact are statements that could be deemed forward-looking statements, including any statements concerning expected development, performance or market acceptance associated with the Rackspace DevOps Automation Service; anticipated operational and financial benefits from the DevOps Automation Service; any statements of expectation or belief; and any statements of assumptions underlying any of the foregoing. Risks, uncertainties and assumptions include the possibility that expected benefits from the DevOps Automation Service may not materialize because the services are not generally accepted in the marketplace, which could occur due to certain factors including (i) a failure to market the products or services cost effectively, differentiate the products and services from competitive products and services or communicate differentiations effectively, (ii) the reliability, quality or compatibility associated with the products or services, (iii) changes in technology which adversely affect the benefits of the product, (iv) slowdowns in the general economy or technology industry that impact consumer spending habits, (v) internal strategy decisions that impact the products and services, and (vi) and other risks that are described in Rackspace Hosting’s Form 10-Q for the quarter ended September 30, 2013, filed with the SEC on November 11, 2013. Except as required by law, Rackspace Hosting assumes no obligation to update these forward-looking statements publicly, or to update the reasons actual results could differ materially from those anticipated in these forward-looking statements, even if new information becomes available in the future.

More Stories By Yeshim Deniz

News Desk compiles and publishes breaking news stories, press releases and latest news articles as they happen.

Cloud Expo Breaking News
File sync and share. Endpoint protection. Both are massive opportunities for today’s enterprise thanks to their business benefits and widespread user appeal. But one size does not fit all, especially user-adopted consumer technologies. Organizations must apply the right enterprise-ready tool for the job in order to properly manage and protect endpoint data. In his session at 14th Cloud Expo, Michael Bachman, Senior Enterprise Systems Architect at Code42, he will discuss how the synergy of an enterprise platform – where sync/share and endpoint protection converge – delivers incredible value for the business.
Simply defined the SDDC promises that you’ll be able to treat “all” of your IT infrastructure as if it’s completely malleable. That there are no restrictions to how you can use and assign everything from border controls to VM size as long as you stay within the technical capabilities of the devices. The promise is great, but the reality is still a dream for the majority of enterprises. In his session at 14th Cloud Expo, Mark Thiele, EVP, Data Center Tech, at SUPERNAP, will cover where and how a business might benefit from SDDC and also why they should or shouldn’t attempt to adopt today.
Today, developers and business units are leading the charge to cloud computing. The primary driver: faster access to computing resources by using the cloud's automated infrastructure provisioning. However, fast access to infrastructure exposes the next friction point: creating, delivering, and operating applications much faster. In his session at 14th Cloud Expo, Bernard Golden, VP of Strategy at ActiveState, will discuss why solving the next friction point is critical for true cloud computing success and how developers and business units can leverage service catalogs, frameworks, and DevOps to achieve the true goal of IT: delivering increased business value through applications.
APIs came about to help companies create and manage their digital ecosystem, enabling them not only to reach more customers through more devices, but also create a large supporting ecosystem of developers and partners. While Facebook, Twitter and Netflix were the early adopters of APIs, large enterprises have been quick to embrace the concept of APIs and have been leveraging APIs as a connective tissue that powers all interactions between their customers, partners and employees. As enterprises embrace APIs, some very specific Enterprise API Adoption patterns and best practices have started emerging. In his session at 14th Cloud Expo, Sachin Agarwal, VP of Product Marketing and Strategy at SOA Software, will talk about the most common enterprise API patterns and will discuss how enterprises can successfully launch an API program.
MapDB is an Apache-licensed open source database specifically designed for Java developers. The library uses the standard Java Collections API, making it totally natural for Java developers to use and adopt, while scaling database size from GBs to TBs. MapDB is very fast and supports an agile approach to data, allowing developers to construct flexible schemas to exactly match application needs and tune performance, durability and caching for specific requirements.
The social media expansion has shown just how people are eager to share their experiences with the rest of the world. Cloud technology is the perfect platform to satisfy this need given its great flexibility and readiness. At Cynny, we aim to revolutionize how people share and organize their digital life through a brand new cloud service, starting from infrastructure to the users’ interface. A revolution that began from inventing and designing our very own infrastructure: we have created the first server network powered solely by ARM CPU. The microservers have “organism-like” features, differentiating them from any of the current technologies. Benefits include low consumption of energy, making Cynny the ecologically friendly alternative for storage as well as cheaper infrastructure, lower running costs, etc.
Next-Gen Cloud. Whatever you call it, there’s a higher calling for cloud computing that requires providers to change their spots and move from a commodity mindset to a premium one. Businesses can no longer maintain the status quo that today’s service providers offer. Yes, the continuity, speed, mobility, data access and connectivity are staples of the cloud and always will be. But cloud providers that plan to not only exist tomorrow – but to lead – know that security must be the top priority for the cloud and are delivering it now. In his session at 14th Cloud Expo, Kurt Hagerman, Chief Information Security Officer at FireHost, will detail why and how you can have both infrastructure performance and enterprise-grade security – and what tomorrow's cloud provider will look like.
Web conferencing in a public cloud has the same risks as any other cloud service. If you have ever had concerns over the types of data being shared in your employees’ web conferences, such as IP, financials or customer data, then it’s time to look at web conferencing in a private cloud. In her session at 14th Cloud Expo, Courtney Behrens, Senior Marketing Manager at Brother International, will discuss how issues that had previously been out of your control, like performance, advanced administration and compliance, can now be put back behind your firewall.
More and more enterprises today are doing business by opening up their data and applications through APIs. Though forward-thinking and strategic, exposing APIs also increases the surface area for potential attack by hackers. To benefit from APIs while staying secure, enterprises and security architects need to continue to develop a deep understanding about API security and how it differs from traditional web application security or mobile application security. In his session at 14th Cloud Expo, Sachin Agarwal, VP of Product Marketing and Strategy at SOA Software, will walk you through the various aspects of how an API could be potentially exploited. He will discuss the necessary best practices to secure your data and enterprise applications while continue continuing to support your business’s digital initiatives.
The revolution that happened in the server universe over the past 15 years has resulted in an eco-system that is more open, more democratically innovative and produced better results in technically challenging dimensions like scale. The underpinnings of the revolution were common hardware, standards based APIs (ex. POSIX) and a strict adherence to layering and isolation between applications, daemons and kernel drivers/modules which allowed multiple types of development happen in parallel without hindering others. Put simply, today's server model is built on a consistent x86 platform with few surprises in its core components. A kernel abstracts away the platform, so that applications and daemons are decoupled from the hardware. In contrast, networking equipment is still stuck in the mainframe era. Today, networking equipment is a single appliance, including hardware, OS, applications and user interface come as a monolithic entity from a single vendor. Switching between different vendor'...
Cloud backup and recovery services are critical to safeguarding an organization’s data and ensuring business continuity when technical failures and outages occur. With so many choices, how do you find the right provider for your specific needs? In his session at 14th Cloud Expo, Daniel Jacobson, Technology Manager at BUMI, will outline the key factors including backup configurations, proactive monitoring, data restoration, disaster recovery drills, security, compliance and data center resources. Aside from the technical considerations, the secret sauce in identifying the best vendor is the level of focus, expertise and specialization of their engineering team and support group, and how they monitor your day-to-day backups, provide recommendations, and guide you through restores when necessary.
Cloud scalability and performance should be at the heart of every successful Internet venture. The infrastructure needs to be resilient, flexible, and fast – it’s best not to get caught thinking about architecture until the middle of an emergency, when it's too late. In his interactive, no-holds-barred session at 14th Cloud Expo, Phil Jackson, Development Community Advocate for SoftLayer, will dive into how to design and build-out the right cloud infrastructure.
You use an agile process; your goal is to make your organization more agile. What about your data infrastructure? The truth is, today’s databases are anything but agile – they are effectively static repositories that are cumbersome to work with, difficult to change, and cannot keep pace with application demands. Performance suffers as a result, and it takes far longer than it should to deliver on new features and capabilities needed to make your organization competitive. As your application and business needs change, data repositories and structures get outmoded rapidly, resulting in increased work for application developers and slow performance for end users. Further, as data sizes grow into the Big Data realm, this problem is exacerbated and becomes even more difficult to address. A seemingly simple schema change can take hours (or more) to perform, and as requirements evolve the disconnect between existing data structures and actual needs diverge.
SYS-CON Events announced today that SherWeb, a long-time leading provider of cloud services and Microsoft's 2013 World Hosting Partner of the Year, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 14th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 10–12, 2014, at the Javits Center in New York City, New York. A worldwide hosted services leader ranking in the prestigious North American Deloitte Technology Fast 500TM, and Microsoft's 2013 World Hosting Partner of the Year, SherWeb provides competitive cloud solutions to businesses and partners around the world. Founded in 1998, SherWeb is a privately owned company headquartered in Quebec, Canada. Its service portfolio includes Microsoft Exchange, SharePoint, Lync, Dynamics CRM and more.
The world of cloud and application development is not just for the hardened developer these days. In their session at 14th Cloud Expo, Phil Jackson, Development Community Advocate for SoftLayer, and Harold Hannon, Sr. Software Architect at SoftLayer, will pull back the curtain of the architecture of a fun demo application purpose-built for the cloud. They will focus on demonstrating how they leveraged compute, storage, messaging, and other cloud elements hosted at SoftLayer to lower the effort and difficulty of putting together a useful application. This will be an active demonstration and review of simple command-line tools and resources, so don’t be afraid if you are not a seasoned developer.