Welcome!

@DevOpsSummit Authors: Elizabeth White, Amit Gupta, Liz McMillan, Pat Romanski, Yeshim Deniz

Related Topics: @DevOpsSummit, Linux Containers, Containers Expo Blog, Release Management , @CloudExpo, SDN Journal

@DevOpsSummit: Blog Feed Post

Just What Does 'Operationalize' Mean Anyway?

We keep saying that, does it mean what you think it means?

Just What Does 'Operationalize' Mean Anyway?

Operationalization (which is really hard to say, go ahead - try it a few times) is a concept that crosses the lines between trends and technologies. Both SDN and DevOps share the notion of "operationalization" as a means to achieve the goal of aligning IT with business priorities, like that of accelerating time to market for all important applications.

But what does it really mean to operationalize the network, or app deployments, or really, anything?

Operationalization is a lot like DevOps in that it's more of an approach to how you deploy and manage operations than it is some concrete, tangible thing. It is a verb, it's something you do that has concrete, measurable impacts on the application environment, aka the data center, and the processes that move an application from development and into the hands of its intended consumers, whether internal or external.

operationalize - meaning

When we say "operationalize the network", what we mean is to apply a systematic approach to automating network tasks and orchestrating operational processes in a way that meets measurable, defined goals that align with business priorities.

Consider the business priority to deliver projects on time. You know, get projects to market before the competition (to meet the business concern of revenue growth) or roll out internal apps faster (to meet the business concern of productivity improvements). The top CIO priorities are intertwined, and IT is in the business of applications as much as it is about technology.

Automate all the network things

Accelerating the time to market (or time to roll out for internal applications) is an imperative that enables IT to meet several business and IT-related goals simultaneously. But to do that, IT has to operationalize all the things - including the network. Operations (whether network or security or application) has to focus on automating tasks and orchestrating processes to achieve the speed, scale, and stability necessary to roll out new or improved apps faster and, in some cases, more frequently. That means taking advantage of programmability (APIs, app templates and even data path) to integrate and automate the provisioning, configuration and elasticity of applications and the services that deliver them.

Does that mean you have to become a coder? Not necessarily. Much of the automation and orchestration of the network is being made available through ecosystems (like those around VMware, Cisco, OpenDaylight and OpenStack) that enable the integration necessary to occur through plug-ins, policies or templates rather requiring network engineers to become developers. No doubt some organizations will choose a more hands-on approach, in which case the answer becomes yes, yes you will have to become familiar with scripting tools and languages and APIs to enable the automation and, ultimately, orchestration required to achieve alignment with business and operational goals.

Measure all the deployment things

Automation and orchestration alone aren't enough, though, to operationalize the network. Measures must be put into place that span the entire application deployment process. Those measures should align with other operations groups and align better with the business, measures that are typically associated with DevOps but are directly relatable to the network, too:

  • Deploy frequency
  • Volume of defects
  • MTTR
  • Number & Frequency of outages
  • Number & Frequency of performance issues
  • Time/cost per release (deployment)

Automation certainly impacts some of these measures, but not all. Process optimization is a critical component of DevOps and operationalization as well that impacts many measures but is people and analysis driven.

Optimize all the process things

Optimization requires understanding the processes that have likely ossified over time and re-evaluating each and every step to improve not just the speed but the efficiency, too (no, they aren't the same, Virginia). Optimization of processes is about measuring and mapping processes to find the bottlenecks and idle time that causes the entire app deployment train to slow to a crawl.

The reality is that orchestrating poor processes just lets you fail faster and more often. So identifying those processes (that include handoffs between silos) causing bottlenecks in the deployment process (or where errors seem to constantly be introduced) is a critical component of successfully operationalizing the network (and other operations, for that matter). Giving the app infrastructure operations group an "easy" button to deploy the appropriate network services isn't going to improve the process if that process is itself broken, after all.

The measures let you ascertain whether changes in the process are going to help or not. Modeling and math can do wonders to help determine where changes must be made to improve the overall results, but both require measurement first - and consistent measurement across groups and the deployment lifecycle.

Share all the app things

All of which requires collaboration. You can automate individual tasks and gain some improvements, yes, but you can't orchestrate a provisioning and configuration process related to a given application or type of application unless you first understand what that application needs. And to do that you've got to talk to the people who develop it and deploy its infrastructure. You have to understand its architecture - is it three-tier? Two-tier? Microservice? Does it present APIs and take advantage of an app proxy or are the integrations and interactions all internal? How is success for this app measured? Productivity improvement? Revenue growth? User adoption?

The answers to these questions are imperative to understanding just what network services need to be deployed, and how. It isn't enough to just give the app an IP address and put it on a VLAN. You've got to deliver value out of the network and that means providing services that will help that application meet its business goals, whatever they might be.

Operationalize. Everything.

Whether you're approaching operationalization of the network from the perspective of implementing a SDN architecture or by applying the principles associated with DevOps you're essentially going to have to embrace and adopt the same basic tenets: automation, sharing and common measurements that result in a cultural change across all of IT's operational groups.

To succeed in an application world you're going to have to operationalize all the things.

And that includes the network.

More in a presentation dedicated to this topic: Operationalize all the Network Things!

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Lori MacVittie

Lori MacVittie is responsible for education and evangelism of application services available across F5’s entire product suite. Her role includes authorship of technical materials and participation in a number of community-based forums and industry standards organizations, among other efforts. MacVittie has extensive programming experience as an application architect, as well as network and systems development and administration expertise. Prior to joining F5, MacVittie was an award-winning Senior Technology Editor at Network Computing Magazine, where she conducted product research and evaluation focused on integration with application and network architectures, and authored articles on a variety of topics aimed at IT professionals. Her most recent area of focus included SOA-related products and architectures. She holds a B.S. in Information and Computing Science from the University of Wisconsin at Green Bay, and an M.S. in Computer Science from Nova Southeastern University.

@DevOpsSummit Stories
Today most companies are adopting or evaluating container technology - Docker in particular - to speed up application deployment, drive down cost, ease management and make application delivery more flexible overall. As with most new architectures, this dream takes significant work to become a reality. Even when you do get your application componentized enough and packaged properly, there are still challenges for DevOps teams to making the shift to continuous delivery and achieving that reduction in cost and increase in speed. Sometimes in order to reduce complexity teams compromise features or change requirements
SYS-CON Events announced today that Interface Corporation will exhibit at the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) Pavilion at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Interface Corporation is a company developing, manufacturing and marketing high quality and wide variety of industrial computers and interface modules such as PCIs and PCI express. For more information, visit http://www.interface-amita.com/aboutus/interface_profile.asp.
SYS-CON Events announced today that mruby Forum will exhibit at the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) Pavilion at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. mruby is the lightweight implementation of the Ruby language. We introduce mruby and the mruby IoT framework that enhances development productivity. For more information, visit http://forum.mruby.org/.
DevOps at Cloud Expo, taking place October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 21st Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to wait for long development cycles that produce software that is obsolete at launch. DevOps may be disruptive, but it is essential.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Cedexis will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Cedexis is the leader in data-driven enterprise global traffic management. Whether optimizing traffic through datacenters, clouds, CDNs, or any combination, Cedexis solutions drive quality and cost-effectiveness.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Mobile Create USA will exhibit at the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) Pavilion at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Mobile Create USA Inc. is an MVNO-based business model that uses portable communication devices and cellular-based infrastructure in the development, sales, operation and mobile communications systems incorporating GPS capability.
While some developers care passionately about how data centers and clouds are architected, for most, it is only the end result that matters. To the majority of companies, technology exists to solve a business problem, and only delivers value when it is solving that problem. 2017 brings the mainstream adoption of containers for production workloads. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Ben McCormack, VP of Operations at Evernote, will discuss how data centers of the future will be managed, how the public cloud best suits your organization, and what the future holds for operations and infrastructure engineers in a post-container world. Is a serverless world inevitable?
SYS-CON Events announced today that MIRAI Inc. will exhibit at the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) Pavilion at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. MIRAI Inc. are IT consultants from the public sector whose mission is to solve social issues by technology and innovation and to create a meaningful future for people.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Keisoku Research Consultant Co. will exhibit at the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) Pavilion at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Keisoku Research Consultant, Co. offers research and consulting in a wide range of civil engineering-related fields from information construction to preservation of cultural properties. For more information, visit http://www.krcnet.co.jp/eng_site/e_index.htm.
Most of the time there is a lot of work involved to move to the cloud, and most of that isn't really related to AWS or Azure or Google Cloud. Before we talk about public cloud vendors and DevOps tools, there are usually several technical and non-technical challenges that are connected to it and that every company needs to solve to move to the cloud. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Stefano Bellasio, CEO and founder of Cloud Academy Inc., will discuss what the tools, disciplines, and cultural aspects are that enterprise companies are considering to get to the cloud and eventually transform the way they build software and services.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Massive Networks, that helps your business operate seamlessly with fast, reliable, and secure internet and network solutions, has been named "Exhibitor" of SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo ®, which will take place on Oct 31 - Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. As a premier telecommunications provider, Massive Networks is headquartered out of Louisville, Colorado. With years of experience under their belt, their team of engineers can navigate the Carrier Ecosystem for your IT team acting as an extension of your business, producing a hassle-free experience.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Enroute Lab will exhibit at the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) Pavilion at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Enroute Lab is an industrial design, research and development company of unmanned robotic vehicle system. For more information, please visit http://elab.co.jp/.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Ryobi Systems will exhibit at the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) Pavilion at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Ryobi Systems Co., Ltd., as an information service company, specialized in business support for local governments and medical industry. We are challenging to achive the precision farming with AI. For more information, visit http://www.ryobi-sol.co.jp/en/.
Today traditional IT approaches leverage well-architected compute/networking domains to control what applications can access what data, and how. DevOps includes rapid application development/deployment leveraging concepts like containerization, third-party sourced applications and databases. Such applications need access to production data for its test and iteration cycles. Data Security? That sounds like a roadblock to DevOps vs. protecting the crown jewels to those in IT.
21st International Cloud Expo, taking place October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy. Meanwhile, 94% of enterprises are using some form of XaaS – software, platform, and infrastructure as a service.
With the rise of DevOps, containers are at the brink of becoming a pervasive technology in Enterprise IT to accelerate application delivery for the business. When it comes to adopting containers in the enterprise, security is the highest adoption barrier. Is your organization ready to address the security risks with containers for your DevOps environment? In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 21st Cloud Expo, Chris Van Tuin, Chief Technologist, NA West at Red Hat, will discuss: The top security risks with containers and how to manage these risks at scale including Images, Builds, Registry, Deployment, Hosts, Network, Storage, APIs, Monitoring/Logging, and Federation.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Fusic will exhibit at the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) Pavilion at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Fusic Co. provides mocks as virtual IoT devices. You can customize mocks, and get any amount of data at any time in your test. For more information, visit https://fusic.co.jp/english/.
"NetApp's vision is how we help organizations manage data - delivering the right data in the right place, in the right time, to the people who need it, and doing it agnostic to what the platform is," explained Josh Atwell, Developer Advocate for NetApp, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
New competitors, disruptive technologies, and growing expectations are pushing every business to both adopt and deliver new digital services. This ‘Digital Transformation’ demands rapid delivery and continuous iteration of new competitive services via multiple channels, which in turn demands new service delivery techniques – including DevOps. In this power panel at @DevOpsSummit 20th Cloud Expo, moderated by DevOps Conference Co-Chair Andi Mann, panelists examined how DevOps helps to meet the demands of Digital Transformation – including accelerating application delivery, closing feedback loops, enabling multi-channel delivery, empowering collaborative decisions, improving user experience, and ultimately meeting (and exceeding) business goals.
SYS-CON Events announced today that B2Cloud will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. B2Cloud specializes in IoT devices for preventive and predictive maintenance in any kind of equipment retrieving data like Energy consumption, working time, temperature, humidity, pressure, etc.
Cloud Expo, Inc. has announced today that Andi Mann and Aruna Ravichandran have been named Co-Chairs of @DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo Silicon Valley which will take place Oct. 31-Nov. 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. "DevOps is at the intersection of technology and business-optimizing tools, organizations and processes to bring measurable improvements in productivity and profitability," said Aruna Ravichandran, vice president, DevOps product and solutions marketing, CA Technologies. "It's this results-driven combination of technology and business that makes me so passionate about DevOps and its future in the industry. I am truly honored to take on this co-chair role, and look forward to working with the DevOps Summit team at Cloud Expo and attendees to advance DevOps."
Many organizations adopt DevOps to reduce cycle times and deliver software faster; some take on DevOps to drive higher quality and better end-user experience; others look to DevOps for a clearer line-of-sight to customers to drive better business impacts. In truth, these three foundations go together. In this power panel at @DevOpsSummit 21st Cloud Expo, moderated by DevOps Conference Co-Chair Andi Mann, industry experts will discuss how leading organizations build application success from all three of these foundations of DevOps - speed, quality, and impact.
SYS-CON Events announced today that NetApp has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. NetApp is the data authority for hybrid cloud. NetApp provides a full range of hybrid cloud data services that simplify management of applications and data across cloud and on-premises environments to accelerate digital transformation. Together with their partners, NetApp empowers global organizations to unleash the full potential of their data to expand customer touchpoints, foster greater innovation and optimize their operations.
Agile has finally jumped the technology shark, expanding outside the software world. Enterprises are now increasingly adopting Agile practices across their organizations in order to successfully navigate the disruptive waters that threaten to drown them. In our quest for establishing change as a core competency in our organizations, this business-centric notion of Agile is an essential component of Agile Digital Transformation. In the years since the publication of the Agile Manifesto, the connection between building better software and business agility has been a tenuous one at best. But now that Agile is maturing and Digital Transformation is driving change across enterprises large and small, companies are realizing that their best bet for achieving business agility is to take the best of Agile and apply it across the entire organization.
SYS-CON Events announced today that SIGMA Corporation will exhibit at the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) Pavilion at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. uLaser flow inspection device from the Japanese top share to Global Standard! Then, make the best use of data to flip to next page. For more information, visit http://www.sigma-k.co.jp/en/.