Welcome!

Eclipse Authors: Pat Romanski, Elizabeth White, Liz McMillan, David H Deans, JP Morgenthal

Related Topics: @CloudExpo, Agile Computing, Cloud Security

@CloudExpo: Blog Feed Post

Control Costs: Use Cloud Test Environments | @CloudExpo #API #Cloud #Agile

Automation is the key to cloud-based cost savings

Control Costs: Use Cloud Test Environments
By Dalibor Siroky

There is no more effective way to reduce your overall test environment spend than to migrate to cloud test environments and embrace testing and infrastructure automation. The nature of test environments is inherently temporary—you set up an environment, run through an automated test suite, and then tear down the environment. If you can reduce the cycle time for this process down to hours or minutes, then you may be able to cut your test environment budgets considerably.

This is the “Holy Grail” for both cost savings and agility. This on-demand model allows you to take advantage of public cloud APIs and only pay for the time you need to run through automated tests. Its success depends on two things: automated infrastructure and automated acceptance tests. If you can reach these two goals, the cost savings from reduced infrastructure spend and the increase in agility will more than pay for the cost of both of these automation initiatives.

Automation is the Key to Cloud-Based Cost Savings
It isn’t enough to just move “to the Cloud.” If you really want to take advantage of cloud-based test environments, you need to change the way you view these environments. Everything about them should be automated, and you should be able to stand up and tear down an environment quickly. If you can spin up and spin down environments as needed, and if you can automate the setup of test data then you create a continuous deployment pipeline, which views the creation of a test environment as just another step in a build pipeline. The key is to get rid of manual testing so that test environments don’t need to exist any longer than it takes to execute a test suite.

Here’s an example. Assume you work on an application that runs on Tomcat. You track source code in Git, you build your application with Jenkins, and you publish a build artifact to a repository such as Nexus. You have a continuous integration server running 24/7. Any time a developer pushes a commit to your repository your system kicks off a build, and runs a comprehensive suite of unit tests. For years, your team was satisfied with running continuous integration that ended at unit tests. When your project approached a release, a QA team would run through a series of manual checks against a static QA environment. That QA environment had to be maintained 365 days a year, but it was only used for maybe 30 days a year. It was inefficient, and QA was a constant source of configuration and management issues.

With the advent of continuous deployment, your team is now extending the build pipeline to create QA environments dynamically only when needed. Your QA team is also committed to building out automated test suites that can be run as part of your continuous deployment pipeline. In this new environment, no QA tester ever needs to run a test; the entire, end-to-end test suite can be automated. Instead of having to worry about keeping a separate environment up and running your build pipeline creates it automatically, runs the test suite automatically, and then tears it down once testing is complete. It does all of this using public cloud APIs on a service such as Amazon AWS, Microsoft Azure, or Rackspace.

Using cloud-based infrastructure APIs alongside deployment automation tools means that you only pay for the time you use. Your static QA environment might have cost something like $30,000 to maintain every year, and your new, dynamic approach only runs for a few hours a week keeping your effective annual cost under $5,000. Another benefit is that multiple test environments can be created at the same time without conflict. If the project is experiencing heavy development, your new pipeline can spin up a new, ephemeral test environment for multiple commits on multiple branches at the same time, for a fraction of the cost of a dedicated test environment.

Cloud Test Environments: Shift to OpEx, Save Money
The impact of this approach cannot be overstated. It is the future of test environments.
If you have a software project that requires a full QA regression test and you create a script to automate both the execution of these tests and the creation and tear down of an isolated test environment, then you have changed almost everything about Test Environment Management. In this scenario, a code commit can trigger the dynamic creation of parallel test environments in the Cloud which may only need to exist for a handful of hours. In a pay-as-you-go environment on a public cloud, this means that your budgets are calculated not by how much it costs to rent an environment for a month or a year, but how much it costs to pay for transient cloud-based resources during a single regression test.

It might cost you $1000 per month to run a QA environment. Think about the cost of running several environments for only a few hours at a time in a given month. During busy development weeks, you might spend $12 per test suite execution and run a regression test twice a day. During a slow week, you might not run any tests at all. Cloud-based infrastructure and automation allow you to reduce the on-going costs associated with test environments dramatically.

Get Automated with Plutora
When we help our clients make a transition to cloud-based test environments, the first thing we help them do is stand up Plutora so that they can track the effort required to support, create, and tear down test environments. Once you’ve installed Plutora and started to keep track of your environments, you’ll appreciate the real cost of keeping several test environments up and running 24/7 for projects that may only need them for a few hours a week.

You’ll also be able to see which environments are in the most demand, and which projects are the biggest drivers of both environment demand and environment conflict. Using Plutora as a Test Environment Management tool gives you the opportunity to identify the environments that would benefit the most from a migration to automated, cloud-based infrastructure.

The post Control Costs: Use Cloud Test Environments appeared first on Plutora.

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Plutora Blog

Plutora provides Enterprise Release and Test Environment Management SaaS solutions aligning process, technology, and information to solve release orchestration challenges for the enterprise.

Plutora’s SaaS solution enables organizations to model release management and test environment management activities as a bridge between agile project teams and an enterprise’s ITSM initiatives. Using Plutora, you can orchestrate parallel releases from several independent DevOps groups all while giving your executives as well as change management specialists insight into overall risk.

Supporting the largest releases for the largest organizations throughout North America, EMEA, and Asia Pacific, Plutora provides proof that large companies can adopt DevOps while managing the risks that come with wider adoption of self-service and agile software development in the enterprise. Aligning process, technology, and information to solve increasingly complex release orchestration challenges, this Gartner “Cool Vendor in IT DevOps” upgrades the enterprise release management from spreadsheets, meetings, and email to an integrated dashboard giving release managers insight and control over large software releases.

IoT & Smart Cities Stories
A valuable conference experience generates new contacts, sales leads, potential strategic partners and potential investors; helps gather competitive intelligence and even provides inspiration for new products and services. Conference Guru works with conference organizers to pass great deals to great conferences, helping you discover new conferences and increase your return on investment.
Poor data quality and analytics drive down business value. In fact, Gartner estimated that the average financial impact of poor data quality on organizations is $9.7 million per year. But bad data is much more than a cost center. By eroding trust in information, analytics and the business decisions based on these, it is a serious impediment to digital transformation.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Silicon India has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Published in Silicon Valley, Silicon India magazine is the premiere platform for CIOs to discuss their innovative enterprise solutions and allows IT vendors to learn about new solutions that can help grow their business.
We are seeing a major migration of enterprises applications to the cloud. As cloud and business use of real time applications accelerate, legacy networks are no longer able to architecturally support cloud adoption and deliver the performance and security required by highly distributed enterprises. These outdated solutions have become more costly and complicated to implement, install, manage, and maintain.SD-WAN offers unlimited capabilities for accessing the benefits of the cloud and Internet. ...
Founded in 2000, Chetu Inc. is a global provider of customized software development solutions and IT staff augmentation services for software technology providers. By providing clients with unparalleled niche technology expertise and industry experience, Chetu has become the premiere long-term, back-end software development partner for start-ups, SMBs, and Fortune 500 companies. Chetu is headquartered in Plantation, Florida, with thirteen offices throughout the U.S. and abroad.
SYS-CON Events announced today that CrowdReviews.com has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 22nd International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 5–7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. CrowdReviews.com is a transparent online platform for determining which products and services are the best based on the opinion of the crowd. The crowd consists of Internet users that have experienced products and services first-hand and have an interest in letting other potential buye...
Business professionals no longer wonder if they'll migrate to the cloud; it's now a matter of when. The cloud environment has proved to be a major force in transitioning to an agile business model that enables quick decisions and fast implementation that solidify customer relationships. And when the cloud is combined with the power of cognitive computing, it drives innovation and transformation that achieves astounding competitive advantage.
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that "IoT Now" was named media sponsor of CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO 2018 New York, which will take place on November 11-13, 2018 in New York City, NY. IoT Now explores the evolving opportunities and challenges facing CSPs, and it passes on some lessons learned from those who have taken the first steps in next-gen IoT services.
Cloud-enabled transformation has evolved from cost saving measure to business innovation strategy -- one that combines the cloud with cognitive capabilities to drive market disruption. Learn how you can achieve the insight and agility you need to gain a competitive advantage. Industry-acclaimed CTO and cloud expert, Shankar Kalyana presents. Only the most exceptional IBMers are appointed with the rare distinction of IBM Fellow, the highest technical honor in the company. Shankar has also receive...
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that ICOHOLDER named "Media Sponsor" of Miami Blockchain Event by FinTechEXPO. ICOHOLDER gives detailed information and help the community to invest in the trusty projects. Miami Blockchain Event by FinTechEXPO has opened its Call for Papers. The two-day event will present 20 top Blockchain experts. All speaking inquiries which covers the following information can be submitted by email to [email protected] Miami Blockchain Event by FinTechEXPOalso offers sp...