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Accelerate IT time-to-value with infrastructure as code


When Lewis Hamilton won the U.S. Grand Prix in October, it wasn’t because his car had the best engine. Several other cars were running Mercedes engines, too. The differences were in the car itself – how it was configured and fine-tuned by Hamilton’s pit crew – and how it was driven.


Car raceThere’s a lesson in this for your IT team.

You’re in a race with competitors to bring new ideas to market. Accelerating IT time-to-value – the time it takes from the moment you decide to act upon an idea until it’s implemented and delivering value to your customers – is critical to winning that race. You likely have roughly the same engine (servers, storage, network, etc.) as your competition. How do you gain that elusive advantage that will allow you to stay out in front of competitors?


3 things you need for high-velocity IT

High-velocity IT organizations have three things in common:

  • Collaboration – Developers and operations teams share responsibility for delivering services to the end customer, using shared agile tools and methods.
  • Automation – Development and operations tasks are automated, including deployment, testing, configuration, and IT operations and management.
  • Infrastructure as Code – All infrastructure capabilities are made available via code to the software layer. Software is used to operate IT and optimize infrastructure for the needs of an application


You’re probably already seeing the benefits of DevOps-style collaboration and automation in your data center. An infrastructure-as-code approach maximizes those benefits.


The elements of infrastructure as code

Infrastructure as code is the foundation that empowers high-velocity IT. It’s not a new technology; it’s an approach to managing infrastructure based on three basic principles:

  1. All infrastructure capabilities are exposed through APIs. This is true with most hardware today. The infrastructure management consoles you currently use take advantage of these APIs.
  2. Infrastructure is operated exclusively through these APIs by writing software that operates and maintains the infrastructure for the needs of an application. Information about running the system is externalized from the system.
  3. Both the application and the infrastructure code are developed together with shared processes and tools, leveraging software best practices and lifecycle tools (version control, reusability, code reviews, QA, etc.).


You might already use tools like Chef or Puppet to enable virtual environments. An infrastructure-as-code approach expands these capabilities, allowing you to control infrastructure all the way down the stack to the bare metal resources directly from software. For every application workflow, you create a partner infrastructure configuration and tuning application that manages the infrastructure to run your workflow in the optimal way. It’s the software equivalent of having Lewis Hamilton’s pit crew at the ready to optimize and tune your environment every time you take your application out on the track.


Turbocharge your IT

The infrastructure-as-code approach allows you to become more agile – to deploy apps faster, more reliably, and more often. And you’ll find that when you do the right things to become more agile, you’ll also go to market with better quality, delivering market-leading customer experiences.


It’s easy to get started. HP infrastructure and our Composable Infrastructure API enable you to immediately begin reducing costs and gaining administrative efficiencies. Any industry can benefit from high-velocity IT, powered by infrastructure as code.


About the author

original.png Bob Harden

 Bob Harden has nearly 30 years’ experience in software development and enterprise IT management. He is the founder and principal of The Harden Group, specializing in current trends in technology and monetization.

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