Join Flux7 and AWS Solutions Architects as they present an in-depth, one day workshop on AWS Container Services. Designed for infrastructure administrators, developers, and architects, this workshop is designed as an introductory session that provides a mix of classroom training and hands-on labs. Attendees will learn about AWS services with a focus on using Kubernetes. Container technologies like Docker and Kubernetes help organizations meet the needs of both IT operations and development teams as they enable service delivery processes to be consolidated, reducing coordination and hand-offs. This, in turn, drives greater IT and developer productivity. Understanding the options for cloud containers and how they can be used throughout application and software development lifecycles can increase agility and shorten time to results. Join our workshop to help learn more about the container environment and how you can help your organization use containers to improve agility. When: October 17, 2019 Where: Norris Centers – San Antonio 618 NW Loop 410, Suite 207 San Antonio, TX 78216 Find additional information and register here. Attendees will: Gain an understanding of containers in the AWS environment, the EKS architecture, networking and storage on EKS, and logging and monitoring for containers in AWS. Learn how to leverage AWS container services within their organization. Get hands-on experience with AWS services like EKS and ECR. Whether you have no prior experience with containers or some time under your belt, join us and AWS as we explore containers in the AWS environment, learning more about the architecture in-depth.
Last week Werner Vogels, AWS CTO, spelled out in an interview with WSJ CIO Today the Company’s Path to the Cloud Business. A fascinating read, Vogels shares how Amazon’s early IT challenges led to Amazon Web Services, which has become a revenue engine for Amazon. According to the company, AWS has generated $8.4 billion in sales last quarter. A good read if you’re on your own cloud evolution. To stay up-to-date on DevOps best practices, CI/CD and IT Modernization, subscribe to our blog here: DevOps News A couple weeks ago we brought you news of Splunk’s SignalFX acquisition. Splunk this week continued its buying spree with an announcement that it will acquire Omnition. Described as a stealth-mode operation, Omnition will give Splunk distributed tracing capabilities for microservice application monitoring. According to a blog announcement, Atlassian is making several updates to its cloud platform including: New premium plans for many of our cloud products with advanced features and support New free plans of Jira Software, Confluence, Jira Service Desk, and Jira Core Discounted prices for academic and non-profit customers New tools that strengthen control, security, and trust Pulumi announced GA of version 1.0 of its Infrastructure as Code platform. Pulumi 1.0 includes new capabilities to help development and operations teams overcome organizational silos and grow productivity, reliability and security with familiar programming languages and open-source tools and frameworks. AWS News AWS launched a large improvement to how AWS Lambda functions work with Amazon VPC networks, updating the service to change the way that functions connect to VPCs. AWS is now leveraging Hyperplane to provide NAT capabilities from the Lambda VPC to customer VPCs. The change in mapping will result in improvements to function startup performance and more efficient usage of elastic network interfaces.
This article originally appeared on Forbes. Lead, follow or get out of the way. A phrase famously coined by George Patton and later by Chrysler’s Lee Iacocca, it is also an apt prescription for the challenges CIOs face as organizations look to become agile enterprises. With the path to agility often running directly through IT (as it enables those digital projects the CEO sees as driving competitiveness), the CIO stands front and center in an organization’s transition to enterprise-wide agility. As the first area to adopt change with the aim of helping the business become an agile enterprise, CIOs have three options: 1. Follow the organization’s lead. These CIOs generally follow hesitantly, resisting change where possible as change is seen as a threat. 2. Get out of the way by moving to a different organization altogether where change does not threaten business as usual. 3. Lead by adopting an agile, servant-leader mindset. These CIOs recognize the incredible opportunity in front of them to guide their company’s digital transformation. A Seat At The Table To effectively lead the agile enterprise, CIOs need a seat at the table. Digital transformation can help carve this path in two important ways. First, it can create greater unity between IT and business units — as well as between the CIO and executives who lead these departments. By partnering with other executives to successfully achieve alignment, IT can more directly deliver results to business goals and objectives. As a result, this helps the company gain critical market advantages and exponentially grows the value of the CIO in the process.
The 2019 State of DevOps report by DORA has been released and it underscores a key finding from prior reports, that it is possible to optimize for stability without sacrificing speed. The study also found that the use of cloud is predictive of high performing organizations, with the highest performing teams 24x more likely to execute on DORA’s five critical capabilities of cloud computing. And, high performers favor strategies that create community structures across the organization. Examples include Communities of Practice and supported Proofs of Concept, that are likely to make DevOps initiatives more sustainable and resilient. To stay up-to-date on DevOps best practices, CI/CD and IT Modernization, subscribe to our blog here: DevOps News Lightbend announced the launch of CloudState, an Open Source Serverless framework that the company says is designed to enable stateful workloads on the Knative / Kubernetes stack. In a TechCrunch interview, CTO Jonas Bonér states, “I think people sometimes [don’t distinguish] between serverless and Function as a Service. I think that’s actually cutting the technology short. What serverless really brings to the table is this completely new developer experience and operations experience by trying to automate as much as possible. A lot of people say that I have this excellent use case for the current incarnation of serverless and Function as a Service, but the rest of my application doesn’t really work running there. That’s exactly what CloudState is trying to address.” GA of HashiCorp Consul 1.6.0 was announced. According to the company, the release is focused on several major new features for Consul Connect, Consul’s service mesh solution and a number of improvements and bug fixes. HashiCorp unveiled feature plans to more deeply integrate HashiCorp Vault with Kubernetes.
Legacy systems challenge established hoteliers to effectively innovate and compete with a myriad of market pressures. From OTAs to timeshares and new market entrants like Oyo, hotel executives must manage many moving parts in order to compete for customers, gain and sustain their loyalty. To compete effectively, a strong IT strategy that supports the ability to counteract competitive pressures via innovation is needed. In today’s blog, we’ll take a look at how a few hoteliers transformed their systems in order to innovate and compete, in the process helping address specific business goals. Increase Customer Acquisition Since their introduction, OTAs have only grown market share, and are expected to reach 41% of the US market by 2020. To effectively compete for guests, hotels must become — and remain — OTA friendly, both in the US and globally. At a technical level, this means that hotels must evolve their IT processes, creating and modifying APIs that can easily expose inventory data to meet the needs of any travel search site. And, IT processes must be agile and automated in order to continuously feed fresh data to OTAs. At one leading hotelier, the technology team needed a process for creating and modifying APIs that could easily expose inventory data to meet the needs of any OTA. DevOps was identified as being able to play a clear role in facilitating agile methodology best practices. Working with our DevOps consulting team, the hotelier applied the Flux7 Enterprise DevOps Framework to provide a foundation for DevOps that now allows the company to rapidly design, build, test and deploy solutions, like APIs for OTAs. In the process, they have been able to accelerate their IT modernization, using freed developer and operational resources to fuel new stages of modernization and innovation.
The Amazon API Gateway can be used to publicly publish an organization’s APIs. In just a few clicks, or a few lines of code, one can set up an API Gateway proxying all requests from the Internet to a private application (usually custom code running in a private subnet). However, as the API Gateway becomes a public entry point into an AWS environment, it is necessary to secure it so that it blocks potentially malicious requests before reaching code. As a result, it is important to reduce risks this entry point causes — such as a data breach — by reducing the exposure of code. Specifically, in today’s blog, we’ll explore how to increase security and PCI compliance by reducing the attack surface of APIs with the Swagger Specification. While the AWS API Gateway is listed as a service in the scope of the AWS PCI compliance program, it does not mean one should keep Amazon’s default PCI implementation settings. PCI DSS v3.2.1 has the following requirement “1.2.1 Restrict inbound and outbound traffic to that which is necessary for the cardholder data environment, and specifically deny all other traffic.” The same requirement applies to HIPAA and many other compliance regulations. To protect the cardholder and their Personally Identifiable Information (PII), it is the responsibility of the business to configure the proper controls to block malicious requests. Fig Source: https://aws.amazon.com/api-gateway/ Note that cloud-based projects share responsibility for cloud security. AWS refers to this as a “Shared Responsibility Model” and it’s important to understand where the responsibility of the public cloud provider ends and where yours begins. For example, AWS operates, manages and controls the components from the host OS and virtualization layer down to the physical security of the facilities where it operates.
M&A activity was in the news this week with several significant industry announcements. Splunk announced a definitive agreement to acquire SignalFx, a SaaS provider of real-time monitoring and metrics for cloud infrastructure, microservices, and applications. As the APM market heats up, Splunk is asserting itself as an APM leader for organizations at every stage of their cloud journey. VMware announced a deal to purchase Pivotal in a deal valued at $2.7B. They also revealed plans to acquire Carbon Black, an endpoint security company, for $2.1 billion. We also saw Resolve Systems announce the acquisition of FixStream. The marriage will bring together FixStream AIOps and Resolve’s IT automation and orchestration platform. To stay up-to-date on DevOps security, CI/CD and IT Modernization, subscribe to our blog here: DevOps News Puppet announced Puppet Remediate with partners, Bitbone and Fishtech. According to a news announcement, the solution seeks to unify infrastructure and vulnerability data, quickly identifying what infrastructure resources are impacted by vulnerabilities, and then allows operators to take immediate action to remediate vulnerable packages without requiring any agent technology. GitLab revealed that its Branch Source Plugin has been released to the Jenkins update center. The new plugin allows the creation of jobs based on GitLab user, group, or subgroup project by either import a single project’s branches as jobs from a GitLab user/group/subgroup or by importing all or a subset of projects as jobs from a GitLab user/group/subgroup. Red Hat announced GA of Red Hat OpenShift Service Mesh. According to the press release, Service Mesh connects, observes and simplifies service-to-service communication of Kubernetes applications on Red Hat OpenShift 4.
Continuous testing is a DevOps best practice that helps ensure code quality. It implies that code is tested early, often and automatically, helping create a culture of test-driven development (TDD) and continuous integration (CI). While today’s blog isn’t a deep dive into TDD, we lean on the description of Kent Beck, who is credited with developing the technique, as one that encourages simple design and inspires confidence. While DevOps teams often excel at enabling application teams with better testing, in a case of “the cobbler’s children have no shoes” the DevOps community largely lags in the testing of their own code assets. Yet, the increasing complexity of infrastructure, configuration, and jobs among other assets make this situation increasingly untenable. For example, one of the most critical code assets created by a DevOps team is their server configuration. It is usually complex as it handles multiple interdependencies and requires long testing cycles. Clearly, a lack of proper DevOps security testing and TDD can prevent DevOps teams from realizing their potential. Our CTO has a simple mantra, “make it easy to do the right thing and harder to do the wrong thing.” Employing this mantra, we created a templatized framework to create Ansible roles with testing built-in using Molecule. We share our learnings with you today in this blog post. Ease Testing Of Ansible Roles with Molecule Scenarios, Testinfra Molecule is designed to help develop and test Ansible roles. Providing support for multiple testing scenarios and frameworks, it was little surprise when Ansible announced that it was officially adopting Molecule and Ansible-Lint to test Ansible roles. This adoption unites the Ansible open source community behind a single framework, unifying the efforts. Hence, using Molecule and TestInfra as the framework of choice for Flux7 was a no-brainer.
Inc. magazine has announced its annual ranking of the fastest-growing companies in America and for the second year, Flux7 has been named to the prestigious list. We are truly honored to be named among some of the most iconic brands in the American economy, such as Microsoft, Dell, LinkedIn, Zillow, and many others, who have been named to the list over time. Flux7 ranked 1489th nationally with three-year revenue growth of 277% and was also ranked as the 39th fastest-growing IT Systems Development company, as well as 31st among all private companies in Austin. (A full list of the Inc. 5000, including company profiles and an interactive database, can be found at www.inc.com/inc5000.) While this is a tremendous sign of Flux7’s continued growth and business momentum, it is also a recognition of the hard work of our team members, and the trusting relationships we have built with our customers. Organizations partner with Flux7 to strategically plan IT roadmap adoption of DevOps value and to accelerate progress using highly in-demand skills and proven experience with cloud, containers, configuration management, and CICD. Flux7 customers gain long-term agility through the transfer of knowledge and IP during the planning and delivery process. As our CEO, Aater Suleman, stated in a letter to our readers earlier this year, Flux7 was founded with a vision is to enable enterprises to experiment more, fail cheap, and measure results accurately.