Getting developers and IT operations working together

by Alan Hale (Red Hat)

This post originally appeared in DeveloperTech.

Today’s business leaders want more innovation, faster. They know that, in order to beat competitors and continue to thrive, their organisation must excel in bringing new products and services to market at speed and on consistently exceeding customer expectations.

That puts major pressure on those responsible for developing and delivering new and enhanced software functionality for the business to use. More frequent releases and shorter deadlines are increasingly becoming facts of life, but in the race to fast-track new pieces of code, IT teams often hit a roadblock.

That roadblock occurs at the boundary of application development and IT operations, an intersection where two very different cultures meet.

Conflict resolution

On one side of the boundary is the culture of the developer, where creativity, freedom to experiment and choice of tools are paramount. The developer is happiest using Agile techniques to produce a constant stream of software releases and upgrades that will get the business where it needs to be, in terms of innovation.

On the other side of the boundary is IT operations, where stability and control are what matters. Disruption is the enemy and frequent software releases can be complex to manage. IT operations agree that they want the business to move forwards – but not at the risk of critical systems falling over.

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Five Questions with…Rich Heironimus, middleware practice lead, Red Hat Consulting

by Rich Heironimus (Red Hat)

It’s no secret that middleware is increasingly a critical component of integrating, automating and accelerating business. With the rapid development of new technologies and platforms, we caught up with Rich Heironimus for his thoughts as to the latest trends arounds middleware, and what it means for developers.

How are customers using middleware today?
Today, middleware is increasingly helping customers achieve business agility. The flexibility that a well-architected system brings to the customer ultimately translates into better business efficiency. Legacy systems are often tightly coupled and making changes becomes more and more expensive over time. Many customers are building an integration or SOA foundation that leverages BPM and BRMS to achieve business agility by deploying their key processes and rules in middleware platforms. As more customers become more globalized, many customers are trying to deploy standardized processes and rules across the region or globe with localized changes or differences. BPM and BRMS middleware is enabling this flexibility.

What are some trends happening right now in the middleware space?
Middleware is being used to reduce the time to market for new applications by leveraging the efficiency driven through integration and BPM/BRMS platforms. Customers are revamping legacy workflow driven applications by refactoring them on a BPM/BRMS platform and owning the changes. Big data is also driving Complex Event processing, rules and process adoption.

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WEBINAR: Simplify large-scale, middleware migrations with JBoss Windup

Migrating to open source software can be challenging. JBoss® Windup, a Community project, makes the transition easier. Learn how to use JBoss Windup to reduce the time, cost, and risk of migrations of proprietary Java™ EE investments to open source middleware.

In this session, Windup’s creator, Brad Davis, will give a live demonstration of JBoss Windup and discuss using the project to assist with migrations from Oracle WebLogic and IBM WebSphere to Red Hat® JBoss Enterprise Application Platform.

In this webinar, you will learn about:
• Migration planning tools.
• How Windup can be used throughout the IT migration process.
• Windup’s capabilities within Java EE migrations.
• Techniques for making large-scale Java platform migrations successful.
• Windup’s feature roadmap.

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WEBINAR: How Cigna builds better applications, quicker with agile testing

Date: Thursday, August 1, 2013
Time: 16:00 UTC | 12:00 pm (New York) | 6:00 pm (Paris) | 9:30 pm (Mumbai)
Duration: 60 minutes

Your business analysts and application developers need to be on the same page to model, automate, measure, and improve their processes and policies. Miscommunication creates delays in delivery, increases costs, and compromises innovation.
 
Behavior-driven development (BDD) is an agile, customer-driven software development method that brings together subject matter experts, testers, and developers to improve the speed-to-market and quality of rules-based applications.

Cigna increased productivity and quality with BDD
In this webinar, Red Hat Consulting gives and overview of the BDD method, and Cigna, a global health service company, discusses how adopting BDD helped them transform their DevOps practice by:

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Java enterprise application migration: The four pillars of success

by Brad Davis (Red Hat)

With the release of Red Hat JBoss Enterprise Application Platform 6, Red Hat successfully delivered a full JEE 6-compliant container that is both lightweight and enterprise ready. As a result, many IT leaders are actively looking to shift their application workloads away from proprietary technologies like Websphere and Weblogic to JBoss EAP.

But questions about cost, risk and starting point often stand in the way.

In response, Red Hat Consulting has developed a proven methodology, identifying four key pillars to a successful migration. Leveraging Planning, Participation, Communication, and Follow through, more and more customers are easily migrating from legacy platforms to JBoss EAP.

The Planning pillar analyzes an organization’s proprietary applications and processes. This stage elicits an understanding of the application environment, as Red Hat’s JBoss Windup tooling quickly scans applications to find and estimate migration effort for each application. Data from the Windup report allows us to group applications together and to plan for optimized parallel or repeatable migrations where appropriate. Those critical to the migration’s success from a business, development and operational standpoint are also consulted to best understand the skill sets, procedures, and timelines needed to support development, architecture, deployment, maintenance and monitoring tasks.

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What if you could make DevOps easy and reliable?

by Jurgen Hoffman (Red Hat)

OpenShift is great! Developers can quickly start development on a new project. Just log into the web console, create a new application, select a gear and start coding. When you are done implementing a feature you push to OpenShift and after a few seconds you can admire and share your work with the whole world.

But there is more to consider when working with OpenShift. What if you develop in teams? Usually applications are not directly deployed into production. How can I implement a staging process harnessing the OpenShift Infrastructure? How do I know if my changes passed an Acceptance Test or failed it? How does a test team know which features have been implemented?

The answer to these questions are usually not easy, and every company has implemented their own set of processes to address these problems. Although some Organizations have automated some of their IT Infrastructure, there are still a lot of manual processes and changes involved when it comes down to taking a particular software release from development into production. On the other hand, the business stakeholders have a high interest into a fast and efficient Release process, because every day that my feature is not in production and available to my users, is lowering my ROI.

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Building the intelligent enterprise: easy and inexpensive?

by Alan Hale (Red Hat)

The following article originally appeared here in the UK and here in Germany.

Who could have predicted the impact on mainstream businesses of data coming in via social media and mobile technology, the escalating importance of trends such as ‘big data’ or the move towards cloud computing that is now gathering momentum?

The sources of data coming into the enterprise IT infrastructure are proliferating, with new channels and touch-points constantly emerging at an unprecedented rate. Clearly, in an uncertain world, flexibility is a critical component of any business IT strategy.

With today’s customers choosing to interact through multiple channels, businesses are wasting time and budget ‘hand-carrying’ information from application to application, frequently without adding value at best and introducing human error at worst.

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