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What is cloud automation?

Cloud automation enables IT admins and Cloud admins to automate manual processes and speed up the delivery of infrastructure resources on a self-service basis, according to user or business demand. Cloud automation can also be used in the software development lifecycle for code testing, network diagnostics, data security, software-defined networking (SDN), or version control in DevOps teams.


Cloud automation of web servers for SaaS/PaaS applications can be scripted with command line utilities like Puppet, Jenkins, Git, or TravisCI. The ability to script web server deployments using full-stack disk image files is a key aspect of contemporary DevOps best practices using Docker containers with Kubernetes, CoreOS, Mesosphere, or Docker Swarm for elastic orchestration.


Cloud automation can also be implemented to support corporate WAN, VLAN, and SD-WAN deployments using software from VMware, Microsoft, or open source Linux developers.


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Advantages of cloud automation

  • Reduction of error-prone processes: Cloud automation helps reduce error-prone manual processes and deliver infrastructure resources faster. Cloud automation must support multiple hypervisors and virtualization standards across hardware resources such as KVM, XenServer, Hyper-V, Docker, and Kubernetes, as well as the software development lifecycle for programming teams.
  • Cost savings: Cloud automation saves businesses money by dynamically reducing the time it takes to provision infrastructure resources, eliminating errors and removing bottlenecks. It also saves money by optimizing workload placement, so that you use the least expensive hardware, and prioritize hardware for important projects. It also increases control through policies. Use of public cloud billing structures is designed to reflect approximately 40% savings over in-house data centers or private cloud installations.

Cloud automation is used in DevOps teams for software testing in CI/CD requirements, allowing them to roll out new features and security patches to production more quickly in Agile project management.


Types of cloud automation

There are two types of cloud automation. The first is support for corporate data center operations. The second is hosting for websites and mobile applications at scale. Public cloud hardware from AWS, Google Cloud, and Microsoft Azure can be used for either purpose. Code Stream, Cloud Assembly, and Service Broker all plugin to the VMware vCloud platform for DevOps and software development teams.


In the first type of Cloud Automation, IT administrators seek to leverage the same benefits of public cloud such as self-service, policies, faster provisioning, and automated operations in the corporate environment, in their on-premises private cloud or in the hybrid cloud. In the second type, Cloud automation improves network traffic speeds through SDN and load balancing utilities, while also serving web and mobile applications to millions of page hits per day.


Web and mobile applications run on a wide variety of microformats. Each app requires a dedicated isolated run-time environment that can scale elastically with user traffic. AWS EC2 and Kubernetes are the most popular solutions for maintaining elastic web server solutions for microservice-driven software applications. Elastic web server platforms implement database replication and synchronization with load balancing on network traffic requests that integrates automated anti-virus scanning in production.


Cloud automation vs. cloud orchestration  

Cloud automation using software like the vRealize Suite from VMware automates the provisioning and ongoing management and operations of private or hybrid clouds, including code testing, web server configuration, version control, and data center administration. Cloud orchestration platforms like Kubernetes, Docker Swarm, Mesosphere, or CoreOS Tectonic all implement elastic web server support at enterprise scale for cloud hosting only.


In this rapidly changing market sector, many cloud web server orchestration platforms are being extended to other data center use requirements or specialized applications for the telecommunications industry and large manufacturing firms. Enterprise IT departments need to leverage this innovation for productivity gains and cost-efficiency improvements across data center operations.


Related Topics
Cloud Networking
IT Automation
Cloud Security
Cloud Migration
Private Cloud
Multi-cloud
Hybrid Cloud

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