Automate With Us
HighVail has been working with automation for years to help organizations reduce manual complexities and increase efficiencies. We strive to tackle the most stubborn challenges and have a deep-rooted belief that life is better when difficult things are automated.
As a company, our philosophy has always been to empower our customers. This is why during every engagement, we offer an ongoing working knowledge transfer to ensure that our clients have an understanding and comfort level prior to the completion of a project.
Ansible is a popular, mature technology used by thousands of organizations globally to help them automate IT tasks such as:
Provisioning / Infrastructure-as-Code
Workflow orchestration / Continuous integration (CI)
Application deployment / Continuous delivery (CD)
It supports multiple platforms, devices, environments and is agentless by nature.
Terraform is a widely adopted tool for building, changing, and versioning infrastructure safely and efficiently using an Infrastructure-as-Code approach. Terraform’s sole purpose is to do a small number of things extremely well:
Automate the provisioning of new infrastructure using best configuration practices
Automate the on-going changes to existing infrastructure, safely
Terraform connects to wide range of infrastructure providers, like publics clouds, virtualization/container platforms, networking devices, storage, etc. to simplify automation operations. Terraform and Ansible can be – and often are – complementary to one another.
HighVail in ACTION:
Issues They Faced: - Each participant required their own K8S lab cluster that did not conflict with other attendees - If a particpant's lab environment broke down, it would have to be reprovisioned quickly - All K8S cluster members needed to be configured identically HighVail Solution: - Using the AWS provider for Terraform we built a dynamic infrastructure to isolate attendees in their own lab environment - Next, we utilized Ansible to configure all Kubernetes clusters - Utilizing our Kubernetes branded training we onboarded participants providing them with their own personalized environment Outcomes: - Ability to deploy training environment in AWS using a consistent and repeatable pattern - Created an accelerated enablement experience for the customer - The agile automation templates that were created can be reused or leveraged for other content
Issues They Faced:
- The existing corporate culture largely utilized manual workflow patterns for IT Ops
- Knowledge barriers and complex processes created friction in developing an effective Infrastructure-as-Code strategy
- The IT Ops centric teams needed to learn new tooling, automation & DevOps methodology
- Specific knowledge gaps were identified within the organization and custom content was developed to enable innovation inside IT Ops practices
- By taking a holistic approach we adopted new technology and agile processes for IT Ops
- Learn Git, Yaml, Ansible Core, Ansible Tower.
- Encourage innovation is historically conservative IT segment.
- Build DevOps driven OPS practice where team share and collaborate
Issues They Faced:
- The existing Ansible automation processes were only built to address the needs at the time
- Parameterization of static facts using YAML files is cumbersome and demanding process that is prone to errors.
- Maintenance of static sources of truth is time consuming (a whole new job to maintain files)
- Using our new practice for Data Modeling we have extended Ansible functionaty with Python code
- Ansible Automation data model now creates successful predictable pattern for pluggable Ansible automation
- We use existing source of truth to dynamically create static Yaml sources that feed into Configuration management processes
- Ansible playbook now needs only few parameters to run while simplifying cotinuous integration and deployment model
- No more need to statically maintain Yaml facts as DB is used for sourcing any automation process
- Scale IT Ops automation without performance hits and make sure facts used in automation are guaranteed, normalized, standardized and validated before job runs which brings dramatic improvements in CI/CD process.