As a member of the OverOps field team, I spend a lot of time interacting with customers, and it seems they are all thinking about how DevOps and SREs teams can help mediate the battle between reliability and innovation. How can they achieve a happy balance between speed, innovation, and quality?
One method is to create symmetry between their prod and pre-prod environments. The goal here is to abstract their application from the infrastructure that runs it, so that it can run anywhere, and scale as needed. By following a methodology like the twelve-factor app, applications can be built as portable services and minimize the headaches when moving a new build from dev to QA to production as part of a continuous deployment scenario.
Many of our customers have tried to achieve this by adopting a native cloud platform like Pivotal Cloud Foundry (PCF), and they are happy when they find out that OverOps is already embedded in the Cloud Foundry java-buildpack. This makes it easy to bind their applications to an existing OverOps instance and capture the data they need to make their apps more reliable. However, they often need some additional OverOps components that can scale with the environments they monitor.
Pivotal Partner Days
I participated in Pivotal Partner Days event, which is basically a hackathon. During the event I was paired with a Pivotal engineer to help achieve my goal of creating a Pivotal Tile, containing all 3 tiers of the OverOps reliability service. A tile is a critical integration point that allows OverOps to be deployed easily within the context of PCF.
First, a few words about the Pivotal Partner Program. It is truly first class, where the focus is on our customers and their needs. The amount of resources Pivotal makes available and the time and effort the team, lead by Marina Joseph, puts in, ensures success for the all the partners that attended. Aaron Meza, the excellent engineer who sat side by side with me, quickly understood the value OverOps provides to PCF customers and lead me through a wilderness of technical best practices.
By the end of the first day, we had the OverOps collector, the crucial middle tier of our infrastructure implemented as a CF Application, the highest level of abstraction within PCF. This ensures portability and scalability regardless of the underlying IaaS provider. Whether PCF is built on vSphere, Azure, AWS, etc… our collector will run seamlessly and even auto-scale as applications ratchet up the number of events coming from what could be hundreds, or even thousands of microservices. This is exactly what our customers have been asking for.
The event culminated with a demo to the entire group of partners and Pivotal engineers, who were more experienced with PCF than myself and seemed more impressed with OverOps than my auto-scaling demo. Which brings me to another point. There aren’t any tools that provide what OverOps provides. Soon we will introduce our PCF Tile and our capabilities to the Pivnet marketplace and bring improved software reliability to PCF customers.
Thanks to the Pivotal OverOps partnership and the hard work of many people including our own VP of Partner Development, Tom Leonard, for making this happen. Keep an eye out for that OverOps Tile!