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Use Case: Cloud Automation Impact on Service Rollout Speed

October 31, 2018 | Written by: EfficientIP | , , ,

Companies are moving in droves to cloud, with the expectation that it will bring them enhanced agility for service rollout, and ideally considerable time and cost savings as well. The majority focus on orchestration tools for accelerating compute and storage, but IP resource provisioning and deprovisioning is often left as an afterthought. Generally, IP addresses are needed for all service components to communicate, not only with each other, but also with their environment. As a result, a deployment may remain stuck waiting for a valid address schema to be assigned for a particular application’s installation.

Speed is also critical – manual provisioning is painfully slow, so failing to automate the process will lead to lengthy delays in time to service. By means of the use case below, we explain how severe the consequences can be if cloud automation is disregarded.

Use case: Deploying a new service

Take the case of a cloud network administrator reacting to the following request to deploy IP resources and DNS-DHCP services for a brand new tenant network on a virtual server:

In order to carry out the deployment, a long list of tasks have to be performed:

  • Connect to GUI
  • Create new DNS domain
  • Create new DHCP template/architecture
  • Create new IPAM subnet
  • Create 2 new IP addresses for production
  • Create 2 new IP addresses for OoB management
  • Connect to Vcenter
  • Create Vswitch
  • Create Port group
  • Clone 2 x VM from template
  • Configure 2 x VM
  • Add 2 servers to DHCP architecture
  • Add 2 servers to DNS architecture
  • Register MAC address in IPAM

One option is to perform these tasks manually. However, manual lifecycle management of IP resources is extremely time consuming, resulting in severe delay in rolling out new services to users/customers. In addition, the likelihood of human configuration errors or IP address conflicts is magnified, and there is little control to make sure corporate policies are adhered to.

Fortunately, there’s an alternative option – incorporate automated DDI (DNS-DHCP-IP Address Management) in the orchestration process using, for example, a Terraform script. The more-advanced DDI appliance suites, such as EfficientIP SOLIDserver, allow seamless integration with leading orchestrators to automate provisioning workflow (VMware vRealize, HP OO, Microsoft System Center, Red Hat Cloud Platform, Cisco IAC, Hashicorp Terraform). The provision of flexible adapters and APIs enables purpose-built, intelligent sub-orchestration processes for existing orchestration platforms.

Automation for Cloud: A no-brainer

Automated DDI provides streamlined deployment, ensuring that configurations are error-free and follow company policies. Inventory remains consistent, even across multi-tenant environments, and the spin out of virtual machines is massively accelerated, allowing for faster time to service.

For the deployment request above, the difference in time and effort between manual and automated deployment is considerable:

Manual DeploymentAutomated Deployment
Time Taken27 minutes7.5 minutes
No. of Keyboard Hits4491
No. of Mouse Clicks337Not Applicable
Chance of Configuration ErrorsHighVery Low
Ease of Policies EnforcementVery DifficultVery Easy

Fast, efficient service rollout relies on automated orchestrator-agnostic DDI

DDI is a network foundation for cloud infrastructure – to simplify management, ensure accessibility and high-availability of mission critical DNS & DHCP services, and to enhance security and performance of networks. All this, while bringing complete and up-to-date visibility of IP resources across your entire hybrid cloud infrastructure, meaning it really should be integrated to the highest level of the orchestration process.

External centralized IPAM/DDI: the foundation for efficient hybrid cloud platform deployment

Ideally, the DDI you use needs to be orchestrator-agnostic, while supporting multi-cloud and multi-tenant. And most importantly, it needs to benefit from smart automation. After all, rollout of your valuable cloud services is only as fast as your IP resource provisioning.

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