0 comments on “Week in Review: RackN talks Immutability and DevOps at SRECon Americas”

Week in Review: RackN talks Immutability and DevOps at SRECon Americas

Welcome to the RackN and Digital Rebar Weekly Review. You will find the latest news related to Edge, DevOps, SRE and other relevant topics.

Immutable Deployments talk at SRECon Americas

Rob Hirschfeld presented at SRECon Americas this week, “Don’t Ever Change! Are Immutable Deployments Really Simpler, Faster and Safer?”

Configuration is fragile because we’re talking about mutating a system. Infrastructure as code, means building everything in place. Every one of our systems have to be configured and managed and that creates a dependency graph. We can lock things down, but we inevitably have to patch our systems.

Immutable infrastructure is another way of saying “pre-configured systems”. Traditional deployment models do configuration after deployment, but it’s better if we can do it beforehand. Immutability is a DevOps pattern. Shift configuration to the left of our pipeline; move it from the production to build stage.

Finish Reading Review from Tanya Reilly (@whereistanya)


News

RackN

Digital Rebar Community

L8ist Sh9y Podcast

Social Media

0 comments on “Week in Review: Data Center 2020 Blog Series from IBM Think 2018”

Week in Review: Data Center 2020 Blog Series from IBM Think 2018

Welcome to the RackN and Digital Rebar Weekly Review. You will find the latest news related to Edge, DevOps, SRE and other relevant topics.

Data Center of 2020 Blog Series from IBM Think 2018
(Series by Rob Hirschfeld, CEO/Co-Founder, RackN)

When discussing the data center of the future, it’s critical that we start by breaking the concept of the data center as a physical site with guarded walls, raised floors, neat rows of servers and crash cart pushing operators. The Data Center of 2020 (DC2020) is a distributed infrastructure comprised of many data centers, cloud services and connected devices.

The primary design concept of DC2020 is integrated automation not actual infrastructures.

RackN Portal Management Connection for the 10 Minute Demo

In my previous blog, I provided step by step directions to install Digital Rebar Provision on a new endpoint and create a new node using Packet.net for users without a local hardware setup. (Demo Tool on GitHub) In this blog, I will introduce the RackN Portal and connect it to the active setup running on Packet.net at the end of the demo process.

Read More


News

RackN

Digital Rebar Community

L8ist Sh9y Podcast

Social Media

0 comments on “Series Intro: A Focus on Sustaining Operations”

Series Intro: A Focus on Sustaining Operations

When discussing the data center of the future, it’s critical that we start by breaking the concept of the data center as a physical site with guarded walls, raised floors, neat rows of servers and crash cart pushing operators. The Data Center of 2020 (DC2020) is a distributed infrastructure comprised of many data centers, cloud services and connected devices.

The primary design concept of DC2020 is integrated automation not actual infrastructures.

As an industry, we need to actively choose implementations that unify our operational models to create portability and eliminate silos. This means investing more in sustaining operations (aka Day 2 Ops) that ensure our IT systems can be constantly patched, updated and maintained. The pace of innovation (and discovered vulnerabilities!) requires that we build with the assumption of change. DC2020 cannot be “fire and forget” building that assumes occasional updates.

There are a lot of disruptive and exciting technologies entering the market. These create tremendous opportunities for improvement and faster innovation cycles. They also create significant risk for further fragmenting our IT operations landscape in ways to increase costs, decrease security and further churn our market.

It is possible to be for both rapid innovation and sustaining operations, but it requires a plan for building robust automation.

The focus on tightly integrated development and operations work is a common theme in both DevOps and Site/System Reliability Engineering topics that we cover all the time. They are not only practical, we believe they are essential requirements for building DC2020.

Over this week, I’m going to be using the backdrop of IBM Think to outline the concepts for DC2020. I’ll both pull in topics that I’m hearing there and revisit topics that we’ve been discussing on our blogs and L8ist Sh9y podcast. Ultimately, we’ll create a comprehensive document: for now, we invite you to share your thoughts about this content in it’s more raw narrative form. 

0 comments on “Cloud Immutability on Metal in the Data Center”

Cloud Immutability on Metal in the Data Center

Cloud has enabled a create-destroy infrastructure process that is now seen as common, e.g.  launching and destroying virtual machines and containers. This process is referred to as immutable infrastructure and until now, has not been available to operators within a data center. RackN technology is now actively supporting customers in enabling immutability within a data center on physical infrastructure.

In this post, I will highlight the problems faced by operators in deploying services at scale and introduce the immutability solution available from RackN. In addition, I have added two videos providing background on this topic and a demonstration showing an image deployment of Linux and Windows on RackN using this methodology.

PROBLEM

Traditional data center operations provision and deploy services to a node before configuring the application. This post-deployment configuration introduces mutability into the infrastructure due to dependency issues such as operating system updates, library changes, and patches. Even worse, these changes make it incredibly difficult to rollback a change to a previous version should the update cause an issue.

Looking at patch management highlights key problems faced by operators. Applying patches across multiple nodes may lead to inconsistent services with various dependency changes impacted not just by the software but also the hardware. The ability to apply these patches require root access to the nodes which leaves a security vulnerability for an unauthorized login.

SOLUTION

Moving the configuration of a service before deployment solves the problems discussed previously by delivering a complete runnable image for execution. However, there is some initialization that is hardware dependent and should only be run once (Cloud-Init) allowing a variety of hardware to be used.

This new approach moves the patching stage earlier in the process allowing operators to ensure a consistent deployment image without the possibility of drift, security issues as no root access is required, as well as simplifying the ability to instantly and quickly move backwards to a previously running image.

IMMUTABILITY OVERVIEW

In this presentation, Rob Hirschfeld makes the case of immutable infrastructure on bare metal within your data center using RackN technology. Rob delivers the complete story highlighted in this blog post.

DEMONSTRATION 

In this demonstration, Rob Hirschfeld and Greg Althaus do a complete immutable image deployment of a Linux server and a Windows server using the RackN Portal in less than 20 minutes.

Get started with RackN today to learn more about how you can change your model to this immutability approach.

  • Join the Digital Rebar Community to learn the basics of the Digital Rebar Provision
  • Create an account on the RackN Portal to simplify DRP installation and management
  • Join the RackN Trial program to obtain access to advanced RackN features
0 comments on “Week in Review: Building Bridges between DevOps and Architects”

Week in Review: Building Bridges between DevOps and Architects

Welcome to our new format for the RackN and Digital Rebar Weekly Review. It contains the same great information you are accustomed to; however, I have reorganized it to place a new section at the start with my thoughts on various topics. You can still find the latest news items related to Edge, DevOps and other relevant topics below.

Building Bridges between Operators, Developers and Architects

DevOps is not enough. Infrastructure architects play a key role and are often not considered. It is our experience that bringing the architect together with DevOps team leads to the optimal solution. Hear from Rob Hirschfeld on why this is critical for success:

Redefining PXE Provisioning for the Modern Data Center

Over the past 20 years, Linux admins have defined provisioning with a limited scope; PXE boot with Cobbler. This approach continues to be popular today even though it only installs an operating system limiting the operators’ ability to move beyond this outdated paradigm.

Digital Rebar is the answer operators have been looking for as provisioning has taken on a new role within the data center to include workflow management, infrastructure automation, bare metal, virtual machines inside and outside the firewall as well as the coming need for edge IoT management.

Read More


News

RackN

Digital Rebar Community

L8ist Sh9y Podcast

Social Media

0 comments on “Week in Review: Automation and Scale are a Must for the Edge”

Week in Review: Automation and Scale are a Must for the Edge

Welcome to our new format for the RackN and Digital Rebar Weekly Review. It contains the same great information you are accustomed to; however, I have reorganized it to place a new section at the start with my thoughts on various topics. You can still find the latest news items related to Edge, DevOps and other relevant topics below.

Automation and Scale at the Edge

Edge computing presents significant challenges to operations teams as there will be hundreds of thousands of endpoints to provision, manage and secure. Unable to physically access each of these endpoints, operations must remotely access with a powerful automation tool to ensure service uptime.

RackN solutions are architected from the ground of to enable this remote automation. Here is Rob Hirschfeld, Co-Founder/CEO of RackN with more details.

Building an Operator Community

We are building an operators community sharing best practices and code to reuse across work sites to fully automate data centers. Working together operators can solve operational challenges for not just their infrastructure, but also find common patterns to leverage across a broad set of architectures.

Community is a powerful force in the software industry and there is no reason why those concepts cannot be leveraged by operators and DevOps teams to completely change the ROI of running a data center. RackN is founded on this belief that working together we can transform data center management via automation and physical ops.

Read More


News

  • Edge Computing

    ADVA Optical Networking will host a joint demonstration with BT to showcase end-to-end, multi-layer transport network slicing and assurance.

    The demonstration, which takes place at the Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona, will show how edge computing and network slicing techniques can help enable emerging 5G applications. It marks the beginning of a long-term research collaboration between the two companies, focused on network slicing implementations.

    AT&T on Tuesday announced a pair of steps in the carrier’s ongoing edge computing efforts.

    The company launched the first project at its previously announced edge test zone in Palo Alto, Calif., and joined a new open source project focused on edge cloud infrastructure.

  • DevOps

    TechRepublic spoke with Datadog chief product officer Amit Agarwal to explain why DevOps is so important, and where it’s headed.

    Sometimes, all it takes to get focus on an elusive subject like the DevOps process is a bit of a name change. Perhaps that will be the case here, when it comes to a new term I’ve only started hearing over the last few months: intent-based DevOps.
    I first heard it on a conference floor, and while many were talking about DevOps successes, others were wondering what it was going to take to achieve scale through the enterprise. Intent-based DevOps felt intriguing — kind of a “less is more” approach to a sweeping development and deployment strategy that still seems too large to be easily consumed.

RackN

Digital Rebar Community

L8ist Sh9y Podcast

Social Media

0 comments on “Open Source, Operators, and DevOps Come Together for Data Center Automation”

Open Source, Operators, and DevOps Come Together for Data Center Automation

Running data centers is a complex challenge as the typical environment consists of multiple hardware platforms, operating systems, and processes to manage. Operators face daily “fire drills” to keep the machines running while simultaneously trying to expand service offerings and learn new technologies. The adoption of virtualization and cloud has not simplified anything for IT teams and has only made their job more complicated.

Our founders have years of experience working on deploying and operating large, complex data center environments and clouds. They are also well versed in the open source community space and see the merger of community with operations leading to a better way forward for data center management.

We are building an operators community sharing best practices and code to reuse across work sites to fully automate data centers. Working together operators can solve operational challenges for not just their infrastructure, but also find common patterns to leverage across a broad set of architectures.

Community is a powerful force in the software industry and there is no reason why those concepts cannot be leveraged by operators and DevOps teams to completely change the ROI of running a data center. RackN is founded on this belief that working together we can transform data center management via automation and physical ops.

Join us today to help build the future of data center automation and provisioning technology.

0 comments on “Week in Review: common customer challenges and news on DevOps and edge computing”

Week in Review: common customer challenges and news on DevOps and edge computing

 

Welcome to our new format for the RackN and Digital Rebar Weekly Review. It contains the same great information you are accustomed to; however, I have reorganized it to place a new section at the start with my thoughts on various topics. You can still find the latest news items related to Edge, DevOps and other relevant topics below.

Common Customer Challenges in Infrastructure Automation

RackN was started to solve the challenges faced in provisioning today’s heterogeneous IT environments with bare metal, containers, VMs, and in the future edge. Here are some common issues we are solving for today:

  • How can I eliminate manual, repetitive tasks that often lead to mistakes?
  • How can I merge my 15 different custom provisioning tools to 1 solution?
  • How can leave Cobbler and move to a modern solution without disrupting my servers?
  • How can I run my data center operationally like a cloud provider?
  • How can I manage a heterogeneous environment without customization for each component?
  • How can I reliably patch my software and hardware to upgrade security without significant downtown?

If these issues sound familiar to you, it’s time to learn more about RackN and how we are automating infrastructure with physical operations solutions. Contact us or visit www.rackn.com.

RackN Monthly Newsletter

We distribute a monthly email newsletter on the 2nd Monday every month focused on a common customer issue. This month’s topic is Cobbler replacement. See it here.


News

RackN

Digital Rebar Community

L8ist Sh9y Podcast

Social Media

0 comments on “RackN talks Cloud Native Landscape on Rishidot.TV”

RackN talks Cloud Native Landscape on Rishidot.TV

Rob Hirschfeld speaks on Rishidot.TV  as part of the Cloud Native Landscape video interview series. Questions asked:

  • Background on RackN
  • Cloud Native Ecosystem Fit – embracing DevOps and Site Reliability Engineering
    • Running “Cloud” in their existing data centers
  •  Differentiation – Build on open source Digital Rebar replacing Cobbler, Maas, and other provisioning tools
    • API driven, Infrastructure as Code feel
  • Use Cases –  Immutable Infrastructure & API driven design
    • Image-based Deployments direct to Metal
    • CI/CD infrastructure, zero-touch automation

 

0 comments on “Raise your Data Center above the Clouds”

Raise your Data Center above the Clouds

As more and more companies move workloads and storage to public clouds, CIOs are forced to account for existing data center investments. Simply abandoning existing infrastructure is not an option and IT teams need to find new methodologies to fully use their available resources.   

Of course, legacy services continue to be served in these data centers; however there is ample opportunity for new technology to leverage the compute power by selecting a foundational provision and control solution from RackN. Our solution brings cloud management tooling found in public clouds to your data centers enabling IT teams the option of keeping resources in house.   

Issue :  Data Center as Clouds

  • Public Clouds – Shadow IT and leverage of public clouds have exposed the shortcomings of IT’s ability to deliver services in a timely manner for business needs
  • Data Center Sunk Costs – CIOs cannot simply leave existing data centers under-utilized with only legacy services and must enhance the operational skills of the IT team  

Impact : Data Center Investment

  • Data Center ManagementMany services cannot be moved into a public cloud and IT teams must enhance their skills to maximize their available resources in-house
  • Automated Provision/Control – Standardizing your infrastructure foundation with RackN allows IT to manage all platforms including data centers and public clouds at scale and securely

RackN Solution : Data Center Efficiency

  • Operations Excellence – RackN’s foundational management ensures IT can operate services regardless of platform (e.g. data center, public cloud, etc)
  • Operational Improvement – RackN delivers a single platform for IT to leverage across deployment vehicles as well as ensure IT team efficiency across services

The RackN team is ready to start you on the path to operations excellence:

%d bloggers like this: