Monday, May 23, 2016

Red Hat Cloud Suite - Modernizing Development & Operations (video)

Red Hat Cloud Suite
(Original article authored by James Labocki, Product Marketing Manager extraordinaire at Red Hat in North America, the original article can be found at AllThingsOpen.com)

With the release of the Red Hat Cloud Suite there are a few interesting use cases that we wanted to present that showcase solutions using this product.

The following article and video walks you through one of these use cases.

The application showcased is a microservices application that leverages JBoss middleware technologies on top of the Red Hat Cloud Suite infrastructure.

Red Hat Cloud Suite modernizing development & operations

Common problems organizations face across both their traditional IT environments (sometimes called mode-1) and new emerging IT environments (sometimes called mode-2) include:
  • Accelerating the delivery of services in traditional IT Environments to satisfy customer demands
  • Optimizing traditional IT environments to increase efficiency
  • Creating new development and operations practices for Emerging IT environment to innovate faster
  • Delivering public-cloud like infrastructure that is scalable and programmable
Today’s applications are often monolithic and bringing applications from development to production is a painful and lengthy process. Even if applications are modernized, today’s scale-up infrastructure doesn’t provide the programmability and scalability required. Finally, organizations need to be able to operate and manage new modern applications and infrastructure seamlessly.

Red Hat Cloud Suite is an integrated solution for developing container based applications on massively scalable infrastructure with all the management required to operate both. With OpenShift Enterprise, organizations can build microservices based applications allowing for greater change velocity. Also, they can reduce friction between development and operations by using a continuous integration and deployment pipeline for release. Red Hat OpenStack Platform allows organizations to deliver massively scalable public-cloud like infrastructure based on OpenStack to support container based applications. Finally, Red Hat CloudForms provides seamless management of OpenShift and OpenStack along with other major virtualization, private, and public cloud infrastructures. Best of all, these are all built from leading open source communities without a line of proprietary code – ensuring access to the greatest amount of innovation. It also comes with access to Red Hat’s proactive operations offering, Red Hat Insights allowing you to compare your environment with the wisdom of thousands of solved problems and millions of support cases.

This video is a quick demonstration of how Red Hat Cloud Suite is helping organizations modernize their development and operations. In the demo below I demonstrate how an organization can develop applications faster, on scalable cloud infrastructure, with a single pane of management between both.



Stay tuned for more Red Hat Cloud Suite scenarios!

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Painless Containerized JBoss Generic Loan Processing on OpenShift

App Dev Cloud with JBoss Generic Loan project.
We have been discussing why application developers can't ignore their stack anymore in the App Dev Cloud Stack series.

We talked about the various layers from the bottom up, but have yet to provide you with any application development tooling beyond the Red Hat Container Development Kit (CDK). All you have so far is an easy to install project called the Container Development Kit Install Demo.

We then provided two getting started projects with JBoss BRMS and JBoss BPM Suite products running on the Red Hat CDK. These were just initial setups of the products and the projects you can create there are left up to you to develop.

Watch JBoss Generic Loan project build.
Today we bring you a financial loan example with the JBoss Generic Loan demo running on the OpenShift Enterprise layer of your stack, provided by our Red Hat CDK installation.

You can now fully demo and leverage a financial industry generic loan process example based on JBoss BPM Suite through the business central web console running containerized on an OSE pod.

Processing generic loans in the Cloud

We will be leveraging previous work that installs the Red Hat CDK. The Red Hat CDK is packaged into a RHEL 7 virtual machine that you can start on your machine after installing this project. There are several choices provided with pre-configured installations, but they all include the basic setup for Docker and the tools needed to start leveraging Docker based containers.

Processing generic loans in the Cloud.
The following container must be started after installing this project for you to get started with the JBoss Generic Loan project:
  • OpenShift Enterprise - a containerized version of OpenShift Enterprise can be started that can be accesses through a Web console in your browser or via the OpenShift command line tools. Explore your very own private PaaS developer experience with this container.

Now that the you have the OpenShift Enterprise image up and running, you can start moving the JBoss Generic Loan project into the Cloud with the following steps:
  1. First complete the installation and start the OpenShift image supplied in the cdk-install-demo.
  2. Install OpenShift Client Tools if you have not done so previously.
  3. JBoss BPM Suite project in the Cloud.
    Add products to installs directory.
  4. Run 'init.sh' or 'init.bat' file. 'init.bat' must be run with Administrative privileges.
  5. Login to start exploring a travel agency booking project:
     http://rhcs-genericloan-demo.10.1.2.2.xip.io/business-central 
     ( u:erics / p:jbossbrms1! )

Red Hat Cloud Suite
Now you are up and running with a fully installed, Cloud ready JBoss Generic Loan project!

For more information around containers, a Cloud stack and why you need to care about this containerized stack for your application development, see the App Dev Cloud Stack series that takes you on a tour of the Red Hat Cloud Suite.

Stay tuned for more!





Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Red Hat Cloud Suite - Accelerating Service Delivery (video)

Red Hat Cloud Suite
(Original article authored by James Labocki, Product Marketing Manager extraordinaire at Red Hat in North America, the original article can be found at AllThingsOpen.com)

With the release of the Red Hat Cloud Suite there are a few interesting use cases that we wanted to present that showcase solutions using this product.

The following article and video walks you through one of these use cases.

Red Hat Cloud Suite accelerating service delivery

Common problems organizations face across both their traditional IT environments (sometimes called mode-1) and new emerging IT environments (sometimes called mode-2) include:

  • Accelerating the delivery of services in traditional IT Environments to satisfy customer demands
  • Optimizing traditional IT environments to increase efficiency
  • Creating new development and operations practices for Emerging IT environment to innovate faster
  • Delivering public-cloud like infrastructure that is scalable and programmable

This demonstration shows how Red Hat is helping accelerate service delivery for traditional IT environments. Developers or line of business users request stacks daily to create new services or test functionality. Each of these requests results in lots of work being done by operations and security teams. From creating virtual machines, to installing application servers, and even securing the systems – these tasks take time away from valuable resources that could be doing something else (like building out the next generation platform for development and operations).

There are many solutions that exist for automating the deployment of virtual machines or the applications inside of the virtual machines, but Red Hat is uniquely positioned to automate both of these. By leveraging Red Hat CloudForms in conjunction with Red Hat Satellite it is possible to create a re-usable description for your application that can be automatically deployed via self-service with governance and controls across a hybrid cloud infrastructure.

In the demonstration we show the self-service automated deployment of a Wordpress application consisting of HAProxy, 2 WordPress application servers, and a MariaDB database across both VMware vSphere and Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization.





Stay tuned for more Red Hat Cloud Suite scenarios!

Thursday, May 12, 2016

What you missed at Gartner IT Operations Strategies and Solutions Summit 2016

Hosted again this year in Washington DC at the Gaylord National Resort, this conference was a new one for me that aligns with the Red Hat Cloud Suite product at Red Hat.

Gartner IOSS kickoff session
It was a good place to spend time in a few sessions around bimodal IT and how markets are supporting Clouds that are public, private and hybrid. It would also be a good place to interact with customers and markets that own supporting operations at scale needing to deal with all the aspects of Cloud.

My plan includes being at the booth for all hours that the marketplace would be open to interact with the attendees and expand both awareness for Red Hat as well as getting the feel for our Red Hat Cloud Suite materials in a run up to Red Hat Summit.

Having an application developer background I was interested in the workloads, the questions and how operations would be targeting Red Hat as a vendor at this conference.

Day 1 
Today kicked off with a few keynotes that dug into IT operations as going through change due to new tools and processes along with the speed at which operations needs to deal with fluidity of assets in organizations.
DevOps & Automation Strategies
are key investments

I then headed to a talk by Dennis Smith (Gartner) on bimodal IT where he presents what he has been seeing around workloads going from pure public Clouds to either private and/or hybrid Clouds.

He also pushes for taking care to structure workloads for eventual movement between Cloud infrastructures, which is nice but often not all that easy when you look at the current vendor specific issues that public Cloud providers have in complexity, lock-in and lack of tooling.

In the talk he showcased a few customers around private and hybrid Cloud solutions:
Bimodial IT is a real thing,
not going anywhere
  • PayPal 
    • OpenStack, was main theme here
    • PaaS layer mentioned, but not specified
    • AppDev kit using CD/CI, but again not specified 
    • provisioning VM in minutes, entire app in 20 mins
    • mentioned lots of work to make OpenStack a 'real cloud'; infra onboarding, capacity & config management, patching, etc
    • working towards adding containers to stack
  • DirectTV
  • Red Hat booth busy beavers
    • heavy engineering culture
    • cloud service delivery organization
    • center of excellence, delivered hybrid cloud across IT & engineering
    • private cloud capacity 2000 VMs
    • AWS public cloud portion of hybrid cloud
    • new physical infra provisioning from 1 year to weeks now
    • new VM provisioning from weeks to minutes
    • requires development & automation skills for success
    • standardized tooling for private & public cloud (hybrid tools)

Mentioned in less detail were these private Cloud users now working to include public for a hybrid solution; Chevron, McKesson, Cox Automotive.

Hats and stickers were gone in
first hour.
The booth opened in the afternoon and in the evening with a short pause for a late lunch with an OpenShift colleague. There was a real interest in our new Cloud Suite along with the Ansible presence at the booth.

Queries ranged from the entire story around migrating workloads from physical to virtualization to OpenStack and on into the specifics around attendees current infrastructure questions. The Red Hat baseball caps were gone in the first hour... amazing to see how many of the attendees made a point to grab some Red Hat swag!

A short tour of the vendors in the marketplace showed a mix between software, services and hardware vendors. Not something you see every day at a Gartner event and I even talked with one of the hardware vendors who was very interested in finding someone to help with large scale hardware discovery / analytics. He was overwhelmed that PaaS & SaaS, "...have gone crazy viral out there in the data centers and we are having trouble sorting out the mess we encounter when brought in."

The Red Hat Cloud Suite booth demo slides got positive feedback and showed off a few of the demo videos to interested attendees. Red Hat was a known entity and the story around Open Source was understood. More than a few were current customers / users of various aspects of Red Hat infrastructure.

I heard wandering the marketplace that attendee totals were around one thousand.

Day 2
The keynote today was based on the speakers book and focused on how to deal with organizational conflicts as a leader. Not much to add there, was not super exciting.

My first session was one where online retailer J.Crew talked about their experiences with transitioning into a DevOps Ansible based release process for their website development. There was a lot of interest in the audience with multiple questions around Ansible Tower technology. Bottom line, the transition to agile development and operations is a gradual and ongoing process.

Another session I was able to attend before heading back to the booth for the afternoon was on the impact of IoT on IT operations and bimodal strategy. This session was designed to help attendees to define what IoT really is, what it might mean for their business and how they might approach getting started with IoT. A really cool customer story was European (UK) health company Pruhealth, giving customers vitality points via their FitBit armbands to reduce your health insurance premiums. This is something I think I need to check out as I have been a fan of FitBit since it came out!

Bimodal is alive and well.
On a side note, while there has been some mention of bimodal being old news, it seems here bimodal IT is still a very strong topic in the market and not even close to being retired by Gartner or customers in their conversations around operations, strategy, IoT and cloud. To review, bimodal is about two modes. Mode 1 is about running what you have and ensuring that the services are there for the customers you have. Mode 2 is about differentiating and innovating with new, agile and hybrid infrastructure, architectures and applications for your customers.

Between sessions it should be noted that you often have trouble getting to the next session you might have wanted to see, not because of the distance between sessions, but because you are embroiled in a conversation with some attendee you bumped into or sat next to. This conference is full of interesting people you will want to have conversations with and add to your network, so make sure you put on a smile every day here while in attendance.

Another session was Should you use OpenStack as your Private Cloud IaaS Platform and to my surprise this was sparsely attended, maybe thirty attendees in a room designed to hold hundreds. Does this mean that OpenStack is not interesting? I think not, but more that attendees feel that OpenStack is well know, evaluated and maybe even being used in their organizations so that they chose to spend there time at one of the other offered sessions in this time slot. The speaker covered what OpenStack is and what it can do for you to turn your infrastructure into a cloud environment. Several use cases were presented showing where the use of OpenStack was successful.  He also covered managed vs self implementing your private cloud with OpenStack due to the complexity of implementing it yourself. OpenStack is not easy and skills are a real requirement that you need to find and acquire.

Red Hat Cloud Suite
The final afternoon marketplace tied me down to the Red Hat booth for conversations around Red Hat Cloud Suite, OpenStack, RHEV and a few conversations around migrating workloads from VMWare. Funny enough, this last topic came up a few time while the attendee talking to me had their backs to the booth next door to us, VMWare's booth.

There was a third day but I was unable to attend this one and hit the road for home. My impressions about this event were that there is definite value for operations, cloud and even some hardware customers and vendors. It was a well focused, well organized event that had enough traction to gather together an estimated one thousand attendees. It had a very accessible and cozy organizational feel with a vibrant and active marketplace.

I look forward to attending again next year and hope to bump into you there!







Monday, May 9, 2016

3 Ways to Empower Employee Vacation Request Process

Planning a vacation? Submit your request through
the JBoss BPM Vacation Request process!
We look forward to it the whole year, don't we?

Vacation, that magical word that brings to mind sunny beaches, care free days of doing nothing, cocktails with frilly umbrellas and a stress free existence.

Often in an organization where we work, to get our vacation planned involves a paper request for days off. A bit inefficient and a pain in the backside when we have to wait on paper approval chains and manual tasks to be completed.

Why not just automate this simple process as a part of our human resources service chain?

Today we offer you a solution, JBoss BPM Vacation Request process, brought to you by a North American Red Hat Solutions Architect, Kent Hua who works out on the West Coast. Be sure to reach out and thank him personally for his contribution.

Paper vacation planning should be a thing of the past.

3 ways to empower

The solution demo offered here is showcasing JBoss BPM Suite, containerization and deployments into the Cloud with OpenShift Enterprise. The three deployment options are local to your own machine, running containerized and finally running on OpenShift Enterprise as your private PaaS.

This example project is a simple vacation request process project for employees to request PTO / Vacation days. It demonstrates the following functionality:
  • Rest service (GET & POST)
  • Human Task assignment and escalation
  • Business Rule for auto approval
This is a vacation process example which calls out to a REST service to get vacation information based on a particular ID. Based on the rule for hours requested (10 hours or less), the request is auto approved or is routed to a manager. When the manager claims but does not complete the task in 30 seconds, it's automatically returned to the group. Once approved or not approved, the original requester can see the status.

To install one of the three options, just follow along:

Option 1 - Install on your machine

  1. Add products to installs directory. For example download and add BPMS installer jar into the installs directory.
  2. Run 'init.sh' or 'init.bat' file. 'init.bat' must be run with Administrative privileges.
  3. Start JBoss BPMS Server by running 'standalone.sh' or 'standalone.bat' in the /target/jboss-eap-6.4/bin directory.
  4.  - login for admin and other roles (u:erics / p:bpmsuite1!)
    

Option 2 - Install on Red Hat CDK OpenShift Enterprise image

Leverage the Red Hat CDK to demonstrate
application development on
Red Hat Cloud Suite.
The following steps can be used to install this demo on OpenShift Enterprise using the Red Hat Container Development Kit (CDK)
  1. App Dev Cloud with JBoss Vacation Request Demo

Option 3 - Generate containerized installation

The following steps can be used to configure and run the demo in a container
  1. Add product installer to installs directory. For example download and add BPMS installer jar into the installs directory.
  2. Copy contents of support/docker directory to the project root.
  3. Build demo image
    docker build -t jbossdemocentral/bpms-vacation-request-demo .
    
  4. Start demo container
    docker run -it -p 8080:8080 -p 9990:9990 jbossdemocentral/bpms-vacation-request-demo
    
  5. Login to http://<DOCKER_HOST>:8080/business-central
     - login for admin and other roles (u:erics / p:bpmsuite1!)
    
Red Hat Cloud Suite
Note: Replace localhost with DOCKER_HOST when it appears in other locations within the documentation.
Enjoy this all new vacation request example process and stay tuned for more!

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Red Hat Cloud Suite - Scaleable Infrastructure (video)

Red Hat Cloud Suite
(Original article authored by James Labocki, Product Marketing Manager extraordinaire at Red Hat in North America, the original article can be found at AllThingsOpen.com)

With the release of the Red Hat Cloud Suite there are a few interesting use cases that we wanted to present that showcase solutions using this product.

The following article and video walks you through one of these use cases.


Red Hat Cloud Suite scaleable infrastructure

Common problems organizations face across both their traditional IT environments (sometimes called mode-1) and new emerging IT environments (sometimes called mode-2) include:

  • Accelerating the delivery of services in traditional IT Environments to satisfy customer demands
  • Optimizing traditional IT environments to increase efficiency
  • Creating new development and operations practices for Emerging IT environment to innovate faster
  • Delivering public-cloud like infrastructure that is scalable and programmable

This demonstration shows how Red Hat is delivering scalable infrastructure with the capabilities that enterprises demand. Red Hat Enterprise Linux OpenStack Platform delivers scale-out private cloud capabilities with a stable lifecycle and large ecosystem of supported hardware platforms.

Many organizations are building their next generation cloud infrastructures on OpenStack because it provides an asynchronous architecture and is API centric allowing for greater scale and greater efficiency in platform management. OpenStack does not, however, provide functionality such as chargeback, reporting, and policy driven automation for tenant workloads and those projects that aspire to do so are generally focused solely on OpenStack. This is not realistic in an increasingly hybrid world – and enterprises that are serious about OpenStack need these capabilities.

By using Red Hat CloudForms together with Red Hat Enterprise Linux OpenStack Platform it’s possible to provide capabilities such as reporting, chargeback, and auditing of tenant workloads across a geographically diverse deployment. In the demo see how chargeback across a multi-site OpenStack deployment works.




Stay tuned for more Red Hat Cloud Suite scenarios!