Provisioning a virtual machine (VM) on a cloud service like Microsoft Azure can take a mere 15 minutes, whereas it’s not unusual for the same process to require two to three weeks on-premise. That’s a revolutionary breakthrough that dramatically expands an enterprise’s potential computing power and effectiveness
However, even with lightning-fast cloud services, most developers and IT organisations today still manually request a VM, manually deploy and set up the apps and manually allocate user access.
Furthermore, with recent studies showing that as much as one-third of all enterprises are running in excess of 1,000 VMs, how can any CIO ensure that these resources are being used to maximum capacity and efficiency? Automation, of course.
With the constant monitoring that automation can provide, businesses gain a new level of effortless regulation – for example, automatically turning off under-used assets.
Automation is also absolutely key for managing the operating system, patching machines, getting alerts from cloud infrastructure or services on failures, and reporting those into the business. With automation managing these mundane, repetitive, time-consuming tasks, the CIO can commit more resources to providing cloud services like IaaS, self-service provision, and more.
Microsoft’s cloud-based tool, Azure Automation, can meet these needs, but requires a solid working knowledge of PowerShell coding to fully implement. By providing a drag-and-drop graphical authoring approach, Kelverion’s new Runbook Studio works with Azure Automation to take this a step further by enabling non-coders to call up cloud services and run processes without the need for developers.
As a nice bonus, a growing library of Integration Modules (ready-built connectors) allows Azure Automation to communicate with cloud services like ServiceNow or Amazon without the need to write integration code.
For example, with the ServiceNow Integration Module, Azure Automation is able to detect alerts raised by Microsoft’s cloud monitoring tool Operations Management Suite, and then automatically raise incident tickets in ServiceNow so that humans can be notified.
In using these existing, re-usable configurations and choosing from a click-and-build menu of options, VM provision and other cloud services can be as fast and simple from on-premise as they are from the cloud.
Greg Charman is Vice President of Solutions and Services at Kelverion
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