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The realisation that the agile practices traditionally focusing on software development activities could also apply to operations gave birth to the DevOps movement. Or, as we like to call it, common sense. DevOps is a way of combining software engineering, technology operations and quality assurance. In order to deliver a DevOps environment, teams need to be able to fluidify their development and deployment process, allowing software and configuration changes to be deployed in the (pre-)production stage in the most efficient way. It is of fundamental importance to capture operational issues early and integrate them as first class citizens when considering architecture and design. The best way to do this, is to deploy and operate as early and as often as possible. This generates a natural feedback flow, ensuring that operational issues (e.g. monitoring, troubleshooting, configuration, performance) are addressed early and effectively.
What if we had an environment where different teams and/or team members could deploy each others components, clients and services? What if this deployment process was as convenient as clicking a button (or executing a single command at the prompt)? What if the resulting deployment was as representative as a (pre-)production environment and as complete as the final system? What if a team member could capture an automated procedure in a tool for deploying his/her software (including all its dependencies) so that others could reuse them? Oh and what if this process was version controlled, multi-tenant and cloud agnostic? These things are no longer out of reach, due to SlipStream.
SlipStream provides a simple and powerful automation engine in which simple and complex deployments can be captured. SlipStream targets Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) endpoints, but in a cloud agnostic manner. This means once captured in SlipStream, the same deployments can be applied to any configured cloud endpoint. Even better, deployments are built out of parts, which means they can be re-used and modified in modular ways, to maximise re-use.
Used via its simple API, the provisioning process can be integrated into a complete build/test/deploy/feedback process, so that, for example, code commits into a version control system can trigger a complete software deployment procedure, including end-to-end test execution. The same can apply to production deployment, once a given release has been stamped for production.
As a result, fewer manual, boring and error prone tasks are required, freeing expensive engineers to focus on more creative work. Time to market is significantly reduced with the ability to push to production more often with fewer defects, thanks to more rigorous and regular testing.
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