See how you can increase Azure and AWS utilization with these simple steps

In the age of just hardware servers, if you wanted to create more servers of the same kind, an imaging technology such as Norton Ghost was of great value. These images were single server images and worked as a great way to create more of the same.

As we moved towards a DevOps world, creating a copy of the server did not cut it anymore. Tools like puppet introduced the concept of a desired state. There were a series of steps to be taken to reach state B of the infrastructure from state A.

This was also the beginning of the shift towards defining infrastructure completely via software or in other words “Infrastructure As Code”. Defining infrastructure this way, makes it easy for the same code to be used for creating more copies of the same infrastructure.

These code snippets can be called as “Blue Prints” or Templates.

Reason # 1 – Solve Skillset and Time to Production Issues

These templates are a great way to get a developer or an application user going without bothering too much of the infrastructure. It should not matter for the application developers if the infrastructure is being made available by their IT team who are a few feet away or a few thousand miles away. These templates can be simple VMs or can be more elaborate and complex, like creating a testing environment of a few 100 servers or other components. This way templates have helped solve two issues, one of skillset and the second of time to production.

Reason # 2 – On-Demand Reports

Template can next be extended to reports – on the service performance, usage, costing etc. No one can have enough of reports or ever be satisfied with. If there is a mechanism to provide any kind of a report the user asks for, and can be defined as a template, it will meet a long standing need of users.

Reason # 3 – Actions Beyond Start and Stop

The third thing, where we can extend the same templating mechanism is to actions on the cloud services. We are all accustomed to actions, such as “Start”, “Stop”. There is life beyond these basic actions. Consider you have launched a database and are testing it. An action called “Populate DB” is required to fill it with rows of test data. Currently you don’t have an easy way to do this. We can and will provide you an “action” template to do this.

We can provide Cloud Infrastructure Templates for actions, reports and services, and call this “Templatized IT“. For Azure, we use ARM templates as the base on which we add our secret sauce to enable Templatized IT.

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