StackStorm today announced that StackStorm customers can integrate the automation of operations into Windows Server and Microsoft Azure, thereby extending the company’s event driven automation functionality to Microsoft infrastructures that include Azure Virtual Machines and Azure Blob Storage. By taking advantage of StackStorm’s event-driven automation software, organizations can automate their Windows Server and Azure services in ways that deliver integrated automation for the entire infrastructure as opposed to heterogeneous assemblages of command line automation. Moreover, StackStorm’s support of the the re-use of existing PowerShell-based scripts and automation means customers can look forward to an expedited deployment of event-driven automation that leverages their existing automation framework, without the need for extensive rework of their automation scripts and tools. In addition to today’s news regarding StackStorm’s capability to deliver operations automation into Windows Server and Microsoft Azure infrastructures, StackStorm announces its availability on the Microsoft Azure Marketplace as a certified solution. StackStorm now supports Amazon Web Services, OpenStack and Microsoft Azure and has recently partnered with Rackspace to automate scaling and continuous integration.
Given that StackStorm’s event-driven automation software enables organizations to automate operations across multiple infrastructures such as public and private clouds, the platform enables the implementation of event driven automation as if it spans one larger entity with heterogeneous constituent components. Moreover, because StackStorm specializes in event driven automation, customers need no longer focus on orchestration-related workflows in conjunction with other rule-based parameters and scripts, but can otherwise rely on data-driven analytics to optimize and iteratively refine automation in relation to designated events. Furthermore, StackStorm’s support of a variety of vendors means that customers can take advantage of one event-driven automation platform to manage deployments from multiple vendors in cases where workloads have been variously assigned to different vendors to optimize performance and cost or to avoid vendor lock-in. In all, today’s announcement about StackStorm’s support for Microsoft Azure represents a key step toward consolidating its early traction within the event-driven automation space, particularly in the context of the advanced requirements for automation specific to hybrid cloud infrastructures.
Puppet Labs recently announced a collaboration with EMC Corporation that renders DevOps technology from Puppet Labs more readily accessible to EMC Corporation members. As a result of the partnership, Puppet Enterprise will be available as a component of EMC’s Federation Enterprise Hybrid Cloud that delivers enterprise-grade hybrid cloud solutions that leverage public cloud solutions from vendors such as EMC Cloud Service Providers, vCloud Air and Amazon Web Services. Puppet Enterprise provides a framework for the management of infrastructure as lines of code, thereby increasing the operational agility of development and operations teams by facilitating the execution of multitudinous changes to infrastructure and application deployments. EMC Federation Hybrid Cloud customers can now rely on Puppet Enterprise to bring enhanced IT automation and change management-related consistency to their deployments. While the product integration between Puppet Enterprise and the Federation Hybrid Cloud constitutes the most critical component of this announcement, EMC and Puppet Labs have also agreed to partner to develop a DevOps readiness program to help customers accelerate their adoption of DevOps practices as well as their use of hybrid clouds. EMC customers can access Puppet Enterprise by means of the company’s service catalogue, the EMC Select Global Price List and thereby integrate Puppet Enterprise with any assemblage of EMC hardware and software. The collaboration between EMC and Puppet Labs represents a huge coup for Puppet by opening up Puppet Enterprise to EMC’s channel of customers whereas EMC, on the other hand, benefits from the feather in its cap marked by Puppet Enterprise in addition to the standardization of IT automation it brings to Federation Hybrid Cloud deployments.
IT automation vendor Puppet Labs today announces Enterprise 3.8 which features key updates to Puppet Node Manager and a new application called Puppet Code Manager. The recently enhanced Puppet Node Manager now features the ability to automate the initial provisioning of infrastructures in conjunction with rule-based logic and parameters that dictate when infrastructure should be rendered ready for production. Puppet Node Manager also supports the launch and configuration of Docker containers as well as a new Amazon Web Services module that takes responsibility for the deployment and ongoing management of AWS resources. As told to Cloud Computing Today in a phone interview with Tim Zonca, Puppet’s Director of Product Marketing, the AWS module allows organizations to leverage a unified IT automation interface for managing on-premise and cloud-based DevOps processes instead of Amazon’s indigenous orchestration tools and a separate Puppet interface for automating, streamlining and simplifying infrastructure management. The graphic below illustrates Puppet Node Manager’s user interface and the corresponding simplicity of its method for defining rules for infrastructure components:
In addition to an enhanced Puppet Node Manager, Puppet also announces an application called Puppet Code Manager that allows customers to define their infrastructure using code and subsequently manage the code—as opposed to the infrastructure itself—as it traverses different components of the product and software development lifecycle. Puppet Code Manager allows IT teams to more expeditiously apply a consistent methodology for changing, upgrading and testing their fleet of infrastructure components. Meanwhile, Puppet’s Bare Metal provisioning tool Razor is now generally available for the discovery of bare-metal hardware and the provisioning of OS on that hardware. Taken together, today’s set of announcements represent yet another important step on the part of Puppet to consolidate its leadership position in the IT automation and orchestration space. Puppet’s ability to render its technology applicable to a variety of infrastructures and platforms such as Amazon Web Services and Docker containers punctuates its relevance for IT management more generally. That said, the obvious question for Puppet Labs is the degree to which its automation technology can keep pace with the bewildering rate of change specific to the cloud, Big Data and computing landscape, particularly as Big Data technologies continue their aggressive maturation and application development, as exemplified by Pivotal’s support for a hosted distribution of Cloud Foundry on AWS, moves in the direction of increasingly agile methodologies that value precisely the automated management functionality that Puppet delivers.
Puppet Labs today announces the launch of the Puppet Supported Program to certify select vendors for the use of Puppet’s IT automation technology. The Puppet Supported Program testifies that participating vendors have passed protocols that ensure the seamless integration of Puppet Enterprise with their platforms. For example, the program validates that the vendors in question have the capability to accommodate best practice deployment of Puppet Enterprise as demonstrated by a rigorous testing program. The Puppet Supported Program launches with the participation of certified vendors Arista Networks, Brocade, Cisco, Cumulus Networks, Dell, EMC, F5, Huawei and NetApp. Today’s announcement builds upon Puppet’s recent capital raise of $40M that brings the total capital raised by the company to $86M to date. As told to Cloud Computing Today in a phone interview with Nigel Kersten, Puppet’s CIO, one of the next milestones for Puppet will involve extending the purview of its automation technology to networking infrastructures, even though Puppet has already begun work in this arena in collaboration with OpenStack and its Neutron project.
Puppet Labs today announces the release of Puppet Enterprise 3.2. Puppet Enterprise streamlines the management of IT infrastructures by providing organizations with tools to simplify and accelerate the provisioning of hardware, the deployment of applications, automation of infrastructure scalability and the orchestration of tasks. Moreover, Puppet Enterprise contains a variety of analytic tools that enable insight from log files, a discovery service that facilitates the diagnosis of issues within a specific infrastructure and reporting tools to enable more effective infrastructure management. Puppet Enterprise 3.2 features Supported Modules that provide pre-configured software for selected software components in order to facilitate its most effective utilization. Examples of supported modules include MySQL, PostgreSQL, NTP protocol and Windows registry. The modules enable the synchronization of software across different nodes, the set-up of database services, management of Web servers and the control of Windows components. Roughly 2000 modules are available on the Puppet Forge and contain custom-built code that improves the integration and performance of the requisite software within diverse, demanding IT environments. In addition to the supported modules, Puppet Enterprise 3.2 simplifies the process of deploying and upgrading puppet agents by 2-3 minutes per agent, thereby introducing significant efficiencies and time savings into the operation of Puppet Enterprise in large-scale IT infrastructures. Finally, Puppet Enterprise 3.2 features a preview of Razor, a next generation solution for provisioning hardware. Overall, this release delivers a substantial set of improvements to Puppet Enterprise that build on the company’s significant growth over both the last quarter and year. The release stands to consolidate Puppet’s leadership in the IT automation space, particularly given the richness of its partner relationships with the likes of Cisco, Juniper, Dell, VMware and Red Hat. Currently, Puppet Enterprise is used by PayPal, Cisco, WebEx and CERN as a result of its partnership with the Red Hat Enterprise Linux OpenStack Platform. With its supported modules for specific software applications, Puppet Enterprise 3.2 stands to accelerate and amplify enterprise usage of DevOps-related software that manage the operational space between application development and the operational management of the IT infrastructures on which those same applications run.
Today, Serena Software announces the release of additional DevOps functionality for its acclaimed Orchestrated IT platform. New features include a portal that empowers developers to provision application development and testing environments in addition to deployment functionality that automates code release to Amazon Web Services, Windows Azure and virtualization platforms constituted using the VMware ESX/ESXi hypervisor. Serena’s Orchestrated IT solution now notably includes load balancing and advanced failover capability as well. Moreover, today’s release features an interface for centralizing the capture of costs related to change management requests in order to facilitate more accurate project cost estimates and reporting on resource utilization.
Greg Hughes, CEO of Serena Software, remarked on the Serena platform’s change and release functionality enhancements as follows:
DevOps allows IT to become truly agile. Serena’s enhanced change and release management capabilities allow Dev to exploit more self-service functions and Ops to release at the rapid cadence required of today’s enterprise cash cows, Revenue Applications.
Here, Hughes identifies revenue applications as one of the principal beneficiaries of the advanced DevOps functionality of Serena’s applications. Applications used for revenue analysis and operations represent the most popular use case amongst Serena’s customer base to date because of their sensitivities to real-time transactional data and algorithms that often need to be tweaked in conjunction with the rapidly changing day to day payment landscape. Serena’s latest change management and release functionality dramatically enhances its positioning as a major player in the contemporary DevOps space by foregrounding its orchestration platform in the context of cloud-based application development on two of the most popular cloud platforms in the industry. Today’s release also continues to empower developers to work in tandem with operations by giving them the tools to spin up on premise application development environments in much the same way that they independently provision virtual machines and platforms for cloud-based application work in collaboration with third party cloud IaaS and PaaS providers.