|By Lori MacVittie||
|January 5, 2015 09:30 AM EST||
Cloud and Things and Big Operational Data
Software-defined architectures are critical for achieving the right mix of efficiency and scale needed to meet the challenges that will come with the Internet of Things
If you've been living under a rock (or rack in the data center) you might not have noticed the explosive growth of technologies and architectures designed to address emerging challenges with scaling data centers. Whether considering the operational aspects (devops) or technical components (SDN, SDDC, Cloud), software-defined architectures are the future enabler of business, fueled by the increasing demand for applications.
The Internet of Things is only going to make that even more challenging as businesses turn to new business models and services fueled by a converging digital-physical world. Applications, whether focused on licensing, provisioning, managing or storing data for these "things" will increase the already significant burden on IT as a whole. The inability to scale from an operational perspective is really what software-defined architectures are attempting to solve by operationalizing the network to shift the burden of provisioning and management from people to technology.
But it's more than just API-enabling switches, routers, ADCs and other infrastructure components. While this is a necessary capability to ensure the operational scalability of modern data centers, what's really necessary to achieve the next "level" is collaboration.
That means infrastructure integration.
it is one thing to be able to automatically provision the network, compute and storage resources necessary to scale to meet the availability and performance expectations of users and businesses alike. But that's the last step in the process. Actually performing the provisioning is the action that's taken after it's determined not only that it's necessary, but where it's necessary.
Workloads (and I hate that term but it's at least somewhat universally understood so I'll acquiesce to using it for now) have varying characteristics with respect to the compute, network and storage they require to perform optimally. That's means provisioning a "workload" in a VM with characteristics that do not match the requirements is necessarily going to impact its performance or load capability. If one is making assumptions regarding the number of users a given application can support, and it's provisioned with a resource profile that impacts that support, it can lead to degrading performance or availability.
Data, is the key. Measurements of performance, rates of queries, number of users, and the resulting impact on the workload must be captured. But more than that, it must be shared with the systems responsible for provisioning and scaling the workloads.
This is not a new concept, that we should be able to share data across systems and services to ensure the best fit for provisioning and seamless scale demanded of modern architectures. A 2007 SIGMOD paper, "Automated and On-Demand Provisioning of Virtual Machines for Database Applications" as well as a 2010 IEEE paper, "Dynamic Provisioning Modeling for Virtualized Multi-tier Applications in Cloud Data Center" discuss the need for such provisioning models and the resulting architectures rely heavily on the collaboration of the data center components responsible for measuring, managing and provisioning workloads in cloud computing environments through integration.
The location of a workload, you see, matters. Not location as in "on-premise" or "off-premise", though that certainly has an impact, but the location within the data center matters to the overall performance and scale of the applications composed from those workloads. The location of a specific workload comparative to other components impacts availability and traffic patterns that can result in higher incidents of north-south or east-west congestion in the network. Location of application workloads can cause hairpinning (or tromboning if you prefer) of traffic that may degrade performance or introduce variable latency that degrades the quality of video or audio content.
Location matters a great deal, and yet the very premise of cloud is to abstract topology (location) from the equation and remove it from consideration as part of the provisioning process.
Early in the life of public cloud there was concern over not knowing "who your neighbor tenant" might be on a given physical server, because there was little transparency into the decision making process that governs provisioning of instances in public cloud environments. The depth of such decisions appeared to - and still appear to - be made based on your preference for the "size" of an instance. Obviously, Amazon or Azure or Google is not going to provision a "large" instance where only a "small" will fit.
But the question of where, topologically, that "large" instance might end up residing is still unanswered. It might be two hops away or one virtual hop away. You can't know if your entire application - all its components - have been launched on the same physical server or not. And that can have dire consequences in a model that's "built to fail" because if all your eggs are in one basket and the basket breaks... well, minutes of downtime is still downtime.
The next evolutionary step in cloud (besides the emergence of much needed value added services) is more intelligent provisioning driven by better feedback loops regarding the relationship between the combination of compute, network and storage resources and the application. Big (Operational) Data is going to be as important to IT as Big (Customer) Data is to the business as more and more applications and services become critical to the business.
Puppet Labs has announced the next major update to its flagship product: Puppet Enterprise 2015.2. This release includes new features providing DevOps teams with clarity, simplicity and additional management capabilities, including an all-new user interface, an interactive graph for visualizing infrastructure code, a new unified agent and broader infrastructure support.
Aug. 30, 2015 07:15 AM EDT Reads: 485
Skeuomorphism usually means retaining existing design cues in something new that doesn’t actually need them. However, the concept of skeuomorphism can be thought of as relating more broadly to applying existing patterns to new technologies that, in fact, cry out for new approaches. In his session at DevOps Summit, Gordon Haff, Senior Cloud Strategy Marketing and Evangelism Manager at Red Hat, discussed why containers should be paired with new architectural practices such as microservices rather than mimicking legacy server virtualization workflows and architectures.
Aug. 30, 2015 06:00 AM EDT Reads: 383
It’s been proven time and time again that in tech, diversity drives greater innovation, better team productivity and greater profits and market share. So what can we do in our DevOps teams to embrace diversity and help transform the culture of development and operations into a true “DevOps” team? In her session at DevOps Summit, Stefana Muller, Director, Product Management – Continuous Delivery at CA Technologies, answered that question citing examples, showing how to create opportunities for diverse candidates and taking feedback from the audience on their experiences with encouraging diver...
Aug. 30, 2015 01:00 AM EDT Reads: 470
Whether you like it or not, DevOps is on track for a remarkable alliance with security. The SEC didn’t approve the merger. And your boss hasn’t heard anything about it. Yet, this unruly triumvirate will soon dominate and deliver DevSecOps faster, cheaper, better, and on an unprecedented scale. In his session at DevOps Summit, Frank Bunger, VP of Customer Success at ScriptRock, will discuss how this cathartic moment will propel the DevOps movement from such stuff as dreams are made on to a practical, powerful, and insanely valuable asset to enterprises. You may call it DevSecOps, or SecDevOps...
Aug. 30, 2015 01:00 AM EDT Reads: 205
SYS-CON Events announced today that DataClear Inc. will exhibit at the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. The DataClear ‘BlackBox’ is the only solution that moves your PC, browsing and data out of the United States and away from prying (and spying) eyes. Its solution automatically builds you a clean, on-demand, virus free, new virtual cloud based PC outside of the United States, and wipes it clean, destroying it completely when you log out. If you wish to store your data, the solution will inclu...
Aug. 29, 2015 07:15 PM EDT Reads: 372
Culture is the most important ingredient of DevOps. The challenge for most organizations is defining and communicating a vision of beneficial DevOps culture for their organizations, and then facilitating the changes needed to achieve that. Often this comes down to an ability to provide true leadership. As a CIO, are your direct reports IT managers or are they IT leaders? The hard truth is that many IT managers have risen through the ranks based on their technical skills, not their leadership ability. Many are unable to effectively engage and inspire, creating forward momentum in the direction...
Aug. 29, 2015 04:00 PM EDT Reads: 329
SYS-CON Events announced today that Pythian, a global IT services company specializing in helping companies leverage disruptive technologies to optimize revenue-generating systems, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 17th Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Founded in 1997, Pythian is a global IT services company that helps companies compete by adopting disruptive technologies such as cloud, Big Data, advanced analytics, and DevOps to advance innovation and increase agility. Specializing in designing, imple...
Aug. 29, 2015 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 254
SYS-CON Events announced today that HPM Networks will exhibit at the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. For 20 years, HPM Networks has been integrating technology solutions that solve complex business challenges. HPM Networks has designed solutions for both SMB and enterprise customers throughout the San Francisco Bay Area.
Aug. 29, 2015 09:30 AM EDT Reads: 855
SYS-CON Events announced today that G2G3 will exhibit at SYS-CON's @DevOpsSummit Silicon Valley, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Based on a collective appreciation for user experience, design, and technology, G2G3 is uniquely qualified and motivated to redefine how organizations and people engage in an increasingly digital world.
Aug. 29, 2015 09:30 AM EDT Reads: 439
SYS-CON Events announced today the Containers & Microservices Bootcamp, being held November 3-4, 2015, in conjunction with 17th Cloud Expo, @ThingsExpo, and @DevOpsSummit at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. This is your chance to get started with the latest technology in the industry. Combined with real-world scenarios and use cases, the Containers and Microservices Bootcamp, led by Janakiram MSV, a Microsoft Regional Director, will include presentations as well as hands-on demos and comprehensive walkthroughs.
Aug. 29, 2015 09:15 AM EDT Reads: 242
Everyone talks about continuous integration and continuous delivery but those are just two ends of the pipeline. In the middle of DevOps is continuous testing (CT), and many organizations are struggling to implement continuous testing effectively. After all, without continuous testing there is no delivery. And Lab-As-A-Service (LaaS) enhances the CT with dynamic on-demand self-serve test topologies. CT together with LAAS make a powerful combination that perfectly serves complex software development and delivery pipelines. Software Defined Networks (SDNs) turns the network into a flexible confi...
Aug. 29, 2015 08:00 AM EDT Reads: 175
In today's digital world, change is the one constant. Disruptive innovations like cloud, mobility, social media, and the Internet of Things have reshaped the market and set new standards in customer expectations. To remain competitive, businesses must tap the potential of emerging technologies and markets through the rapid release of new products and services. However, the rigid and siloed structures of traditional IT platforms and processes are slowing them down – resulting in lengthy delivery cycles and a poor customer experience.
Aug. 29, 2015 07:45 AM EDT Reads: 559
Any Ops team trying to support a company in today’s cloud-connected world knows that a new way of thinking is required – one just as dramatic than the shift from Ops to DevOps. The diversity of modern operations requires teams to focus their impact on breadth vs. depth. In his session at DevOps Summit, Adam Serediuk, Director of Operations at xMatters, Inc., will discuss the strategic requirements of evolving from Ops to DevOps, and why modern Operations has begun leveraging the “NoOps” approach. NoOps enables developers to deploy, manage, and scale their own code, creating an infrastructure...
Aug. 29, 2015 05:30 AM EDT Reads: 353
Akana has announced the availability of the new Akana Healthcare Solution. The API-driven solution helps healthcare organizations accelerate their transition to being secure, digitally interoperable businesses. It leverages the Health Level Seven International Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (HL7 FHIR) standard to enable broader business use of medical data. Akana developed the Healthcare Solution in response to healthcare businesses that want to increase electronic, multi-device access to health records while reducing operating costs and complying with government regulations.
Aug. 26, 2015 07:00 AM EDT Reads: 123
Mobile, social, Big Data, and cloud have fundamentally changed the way we live. “Anytime, anywhere” access to data and information is no longer a luxury; it’s a requirement, in both our personal and professional lives. For IT organizations, this means pressure has never been greater to deliver meaningful services to the business and customers.
Aug. 16, 2015 10:00 PM EDT Reads: 772
DevOps is about increasing efficiency, but nothing is more inefficient than building the same application twice. However, this is a routine occurrence with enterprise applications that need both a rich desktop web interface and strong mobile support. With recent technological advances from Isomorphic Software and others, rich desktop and tuned mobile experiences can now be created with a single codebase – without compromising functionality, performance or usability. In his session at DevOps Summit, Charles Kendrick, CTO and Chief Architect at Isomorphic Software, will demonstrate examples of...
Aug. 16, 2015 03:00 PM EDT Reads: 554
Container technology is sending shock waves through the world of cloud computing. Heralded as the 'next big thing,' containers provide software owners a consistent way to package their software and dependencies while infrastructure operators benefit from a standard way to deploy and run them. Containers present new challenges for tracking usage due to their dynamic nature. They can also be deployed to bare metal, virtual machines and various cloud platforms. How do software owners track the usage of their services for licensing and billing purposes? In his session at 16th Cloud Expo, Delano ...
Aug. 14, 2015 04:00 PM EDT Reads: 640
There is no question that the cloud is where businesses want to host data. Until recently hypervisor virtualization was the most widely used method in cloud computing. Recently virtual containers have been gaining in popularity, and for good reason. In the debate between virtual machines and containers, the latter have been seen as the new kid on the block - and like other emerging technology have had some initial shortcomings. However, the container space has evolved drastically since coming onto the cloud hosting scene over 10 years ago. So, what has changed? In his session at 16th Cloud Ex...
Aug. 14, 2015 02:30 PM EDT Reads: 509
XebiaLabs has announced that XL Deploy, its Application Release Automation software, has received certification of its integration with ServiceNow. With XL Deploy from XebiaLabs, ServiceNow users can now easily automate the application deployment process so releases can occur in a repeatable, standard and efficient way leading to faster delivery of software at enterprise scale. XL Deploy also enables companies to reduce the risk of release failures, while providing comprehensive reporting and supporting IT compliance. Certification by ServiceNow signifies that XL Deploy has successfully co...
Aug. 13, 2015 04:00 PM EDT Reads: 249
In a recent research, analyst firm IDC found that the average cost of a critical application failure is $500,000 to $1 million per hour and the average total cost of unplanned application downtime is $1.25 billion to $2.5 billion per year for Fortune 1000 companies. In addition to the findings on the cost of the downtime, the research also highlighted best practices for development, testing, application support, infrastructure, and operations teams.
Aug. 13, 2015 03:00 PM EDT Reads: 525
SYS-CON Events announced today that the "Second Containers & Microservices Expo" will take place November 3-5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Containers and microservices have become topics of intense interest throughout the cloud developer and enterprise IT communities.
Aug. 13, 2015 02:00 PM EDT Reads: 572
Between the compelling mockups and specs produced by your analysts and designers, and the resulting application built by your developers, there is a gulf where projects fail, costs spiral out of control, and applications fall short of requirements. In his session at @DevOpsSummit, Charles Kendrick, CTO and Chief Architect at Isomorphic Software, presented a new approach where business and development users collaborate – each using tools appropriate to their goals and expertise – to build mockups and enhance them all the way through functional prototypes, to final working applications. Learn ...
Aug. 13, 2015 12:00 PM EDT Reads: 546
Automic has been listed as a representative ‘established and active vendor’ in Gartner’s recent Market Guide for Application Release Automation (ARA) Solutions. Gartner has defined categories of ‘established and active’, ‘evolving’ and ‘emerging’ and categorized vendors accordingly. Automic views the growing global DevOps market as a strategic area of focus for the business. The ARA market is, “Driven by growing business demands for rapid (if not continuous) delivery of new applications, features and updates.” Furthermore, “enterprise infrastructure and operations (I&O) leaders invest in ARA...
Aug. 11, 2015 10:45 AM EDT Reads: 485
Graylog, Inc., has added the capability to collect, centralize and analyze application container logs from within Docker. The Graylog logging driver for Docker addresses the challenges of extracting intelligence from within Docker containers, where most workloads are dynamic and log data is not persisted or stored. Using Graylog, DevOps and IT Ops teams can pinpoint the root cause of problems to deliver new applications faster and minimize downtime.
Aug. 8, 2015 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 354
Scrum Alliance has announced the release of its 2015 State of Scrum Report. Almost 5,000 individuals and companies worldwide participated in this year's survey. Most organizations in the market today are still leading and managing under an Industrial Age model. Not only is the speed of change growing exponentially, Agile and Scrum frameworks are showing companies how to draw on the full talents and capabilities of those doing the work in order to continue innovating for success.
Aug. 4, 2015 02:45 PM EDT Reads: 273