The appLariat Container Automation Platform provides a complete solution for containerizing, deploying, scaling and managing your applications on the Kubernetes container runtime. While implementing appLariat throughout your development lifecycle provides the ultimate value of delivering your applications to market faster, with better quality and easier, more cost effective ongoing management, customers often start by implementing the solution for one of the following use cases.
Dev/Test Lab Management
Public and private cloud adoption have solved the problem of getting access to compute, networking and storage resources quickly, but there is still considerable overhead required to create and manage test environments for applications in ongoing development. Whether your development teams install and manage the components/middleware for your test environments or you have a DevOps team writing Chef, Puppet or Ansible scripts to do it for them, it's a time consuming process to create and keep the various test environments in sync. Individual developers may be unit testing application changes against different versions of middleware and there is no way to enforce the production Standard Operating Environment (SOE) throughout the development process.
With appLariat, there are no manual installations required for your components/middleware or endless Chef, Puppet or Ansible scripting to manage. Once the application has been automatically containerized with appLariat, you can easily deploy it for any purpose in minutes. Developers can make code changes, build local artifacts, register them to appLariat and deploy an appropriate configuration for unit testing on their laptop or in the cloud, directly from their chosen IDE. The QA team can integrate appLariat deployments directly from their Jenkins or Atlassian CI/CD pipelines. You can update existing application deployments in place with new artifacts using many common methodologies or bring full test environments up/down on demand so you only pay for cloud infrastructure when you are actually using it. With appLariat's policy engine, you can segregate different test environments and who can deploy to them based on a user's role. You'll also easily enforce your SOE throughout the development lifecycle. There is no easier or more cost efficient way to manage your Dev/Test Lab environments than with appLariat.
Staging and Production Deployment
IT Operations teams dealing with many applications in ongoing development are looking at container technology to better manage staging and production deployment of new releases. With appLariat, they can deploy new releases with a single click, either updating the application in place with new artifacts or deploying as a new instance of the application. Even if your developers are not using containers when developing the applications, IT Operations DevOps teams can use appLariat to convert their existing Chef, Puppet and Ansible scripts to containers images, import them into appLariat and deploy the apps on Kubernetes in Google, Amazon and Microsoft Azure cloud, or even their internal vSphere environments. If your DevOps team spends all it's time scripting deployments for various environments, appLariat can make them more efficient.
Many organizations are looking to modernize existing applications to get cloud native capabilities and the advantages of microservices architectures. By moving existing monolithic applications to appLariat first, you get the cloud native capabilities of portability, resilience and scalability through the power of containers and the Kubernetes container runtime. As the second step, developers can begin to re-architect the application to microservices, starting with the parts of the application that change the most. For some applications, where cloud portability may be the main goal, re-architecture will not even be necessary once the application is containerized with appLariat.
Are you faced with upgrading several middleware components used in multiple applications? You may have to test numerous combinations of new and old component versions across these applications with different configurations (e.g., Mongo single instance and Mongo sharded replica set). You'll need to deploy, test, record any bugs/performance issues and delete the deployed instances quickly. If you are trying to do this by modifying and managing multiple versions of Chef, Puppet, or Ansible script files, you'll need a large team of experienced DevOps engineers or things will get out of hand very quickly. With appLariat, for each upgrade scenario you want to test you simply select the application to deploy, change the version of the components you want to upgrade and push deploy. With appLariat, this is a runtime decision and there are no script files to modify and manage. Our customers complete upgrade projects in 50-75% less time than with manual methods.
Cloud Infrastructure Cost Reduction
With Shadow IT rampant in many organizations and no way for IT Operations to clean up unused application deployments on public cloud accounts they may not even be aware of, eye-popping Amazon Web Services (AWS) bills are common. And even for companies that deploy their apps in the public cloud from development through to production, it's a daunting, manual task for IT Operations to figure out who deployed applications instances, for what reason and whether they are still needed. In some cases, because developers, QA and DevOps teams share the same large test instances of an application, they are running all the time. For example, one of the companies we work with was paying $60K a month for their AWS staging instance. With appLariat's flexible policy engine, you can control where and how long (by deployment type) application deployment instances are allowed to run. You can also scale up/down your Kubernetes cluster through policy, so you only pay for cloud infrastructure when you are actually using it. With appLariat, you can save 30-50% on your current cloud infrastructure costs. As an example, one company was able to go from 129 100% reserved AWS nodes to 65 50% reserved/50% hourly nodes without loss of compute.
High availability/Disaster Recovery
You may have a replication and/or backup strategy for your critical databases, but what about the rest of your application? Some complex applications can take days or even weeks to re-deploy using current methods. With appLariat, you can deploy your application for high availability or disaster recovery with just a few clicks. For high availability, you can deploy to different availability zones in either Active/Active or Active/Passive. You can deploy for Active/Standby disaster recovery mode as well.