Automation Framework

31-12-2014
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Need for Automation

Any enterprise IT infrastructure support operations team often faces challenge with different processes, activities, schedules and tasks to be performed, both on demand and periodic basis. Beginning from provisioning the virtual machines on the physical boxes to providing the services of the applications that run on these servers, there are multitude of tools which bring this capability in isolated pockets.

There are cloud provisioning portals that are provided by OEM suppliers and tools which take care of provisioning the VMs on the physical servers. Similarly, there are schedulers and task-managers which manage only the routine activities that run on a timely basis on such virtual machines.

However, for the efficient performance of the IT infrastructure, a holistic picture beginning from physical layer to the application layer need to be considered and a process that needs to be defined based on business logics, to extract the maximum value from the underlying IT infrastructure is to be set in place.

Types of Automation

  • Configuration & Change
    • This layer addresses provisioning virtual machines based on the standard operating system images, to configure the same based on the type of services that are to run on the server. For example, a web-server that has to be deployed need not have other ports pertaining to file sharing, database etc, which need to be accessible. Ensuring that these specific server hardening steps are taken for each of the server deployment is a time consuming support activity during the process of provisioning.
    • This type of automation leverages the naming convention that enterprises typically follow and can be customized per engagement in building business-specific-tool for the end-customer

 

  • Security and Protection
    • Further elaborating from the above point towards server hardening, binding virtual servers to specific VLANs, adding specific rules based on the DMZ or MZ categorization, access permissions and passwords that need to be set are some of the activities that fall in this category
    • The above step for Configuration & Change automation can be extended to cover these requirements

 

  • Performance & Availability
    • These are the most popular set of automation rules that are demanded by end-customers as some of the applications. Based on the business criticality, they need to be available at a very high degree and at the same time, also meet the performance standards expected by end-consumers of the application services
    • Based on the thresholds that are defined, the services can be ensured to be available and perform as per expectations / requirements utilizing some of the scaling scripts

 

  • Routine tasks / processes
    • For some of the activities that need to be performed based on the Standard Operating Procedures defined in the Run-Book, these type of automation can be considered to remediate any service breakage and availability demands

 

Our proposition

Happiest Minds has a comprehensive tool-set built towards the Monitoring and Management needs for enterprises for their cloud platforms. The toolset also has the ability to bring in the needed automation and orchestration capability and integrate with the existing service management tool over email or API calls, making adoption of the same, a relatively easier task.



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