Welcome!

Java IoT Authors: Pat Romanski, Liz McMillan, Yeshim Deniz, Elizabeth White, Zakia Bouachraoui

Related Topics: @DevOpsSummit, Java IoT, Microservices Expo, Linux Containers

@DevOpsSummit: Blog Post

Configuration Drift: The Cost of Complexity

Imagine this — you're rolling out a new version of your web app

Imagine this — you're rolling out a new version of your web app. Works great in the dev environment, and it's been signed off on in staging, so it gets rolled out to production. Things seem fine, so you call it a night.

Then the support requests begin flooding in. Something's broken somewhere, and it's not immediately obvious how. Performance monitor shows the machines are running well, so it can't be that. Ah well, better crack one of those neon-colored energy drinks, it's time to roll back and log into these machines to look through logs and config files for a potential cause. "How could this be happening," you ask, "I mean... these machines are all configured the same, right?"

costofcomplexity

Often, that's wrong.

Configuration drift is a very real and increasingly common problem, especially in growing environments. In a way, you can call it the "hidden cost of complexity," and there are a number of causes behind it.

  • Well-meaning team members could've updated something to a new version, installed a conflicting package or service, or applied a fix thought to be minor.
  • Software or OS updates applied here but not there could've thrown everything out of whack.
  • A tiny change in a far-flung config file could be the metaphorical butterfly that flapped its wings.
  • Changing settings or firmware on a network device may affect some or all clients connected through it.
  • A machine could've been compromised in a way that isn't obvious.
  • Space aliens.

And as wildly varied as the causes can be, the potential effects are even worse. We're talking downtime, failed infrastructure, loss of data, loss of business, and even loss of customer trust.

One reason the lurking configuration drift problem isn't more widely discussed in IT probably has a great deal to do with the wide variation in its causes and effects-something with a thousand possible causes and a thousand possible effects is difficult to pin down as one phenomenon. It's not as easy to define and fight as, say, viruses or hardware failure. Viruses are things we can point to and say, "These are bad, here's how they proliferate, and here's how you protect yourself," and as for hardware failure, we all know what that looks like and know how to mitigate it when it happens.

Another reason for not discussing config drift is probably that-until recently-there hasn't been a single solution for preventing or dealing with it.

GuardRail directly combats configuration drift by continually scanning and monitoring your configs across practically every platform and device. It's a robust, collaborative platform with tools to graphically identify differences and potential hazards, and alert you when something goes awry. Reports can be exported to PDF for auditing or compliance purposes, and configs you verify as good can be exported to Chef, Docker, Ansible, and Puppet for automation.

And when we say "collaborative," we mean it. We designed GuardRail from the ground-up to be simple enough to be a valuable tool for every stakeholder. Nodes and their differences are represented graphically, in an easy-to-navigate interface that's useful no matter your background.

Don't believe it's possible? We'd be happy to give you the grand tour and show you a live demo running on real devices. Or check out the product page and get started right away.

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By ScriptRock Blog

ScriptRock makes GuardRail, a DevOps-ready platform for configuration monitoring.

Realizing we were spending way too much time digging up, cataloguing, and tracking machine configurations, we began writing our own scripts and tools to handle what is normally an enormous chore. Then we took the concept a step further, giving it a beautiful interface and making it simple enough for our bosses to understand. We named it GuardRail after its function — to allow businesses to move fast and stay safe.

GuardRail scans and tracks much more than just servers in a datacenter. It works with network hardware, Cloud service providers, CloudFlare, Android devices, infrastructure, and more.

IoT & Smart Cities Stories
To Really Work for Enterprises, MultiCloud Adoption Requires Far Better and Inclusive Cloud Monitoring and Cost Management … But How? Overwhelmingly, even as enterprises have adopted cloud computing and are expanding to multi-cloud computing, IT leaders remain concerned about how to monitor, manage and control costs across hybrid and multi-cloud deployments. It’s clear that traditional IT monitoring and management approaches, designed after all for on-premises data centers, are falling short in ...
The deluge of IoT sensor data collected from connected devices and the powerful AI required to make that data actionable are giving rise to a hybrid ecosystem in which cloud, on-prem and edge processes become interweaved. Attendees will learn how emerging composable infrastructure solutions deliver the adaptive architecture needed to manage this new data reality. Machine learning algorithms can better anticipate data storms and automate resources to support surges, including fully scalable GPU-c...
A valuable conference experience generates new contacts, sales leads, potential strategic partners and potential investors; helps gather competitive intelligence and even provides inspiration for new products and services. Conference Guru works with conference organizers to pass great deals to great conferences, helping you discover new conferences and increase your return on investment.
Poor data quality and analytics drive down business value. In fact, Gartner estimated that the average financial impact of poor data quality on organizations is $9.7 million per year. But bad data is much more than a cost center. By eroding trust in information, analytics and the business decisions based on these, it is a serious impediment to digital transformation.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Silicon India has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Published in Silicon Valley, Silicon India magazine is the premiere platform for CIOs to discuss their innovative enterprise solutions and allows IT vendors to learn about new solutions that can help grow their business.
We are seeing a major migration of enterprises applications to the cloud. As cloud and business use of real time applications accelerate, legacy networks are no longer able to architecturally support cloud adoption and deliver the performance and security required by highly distributed enterprises. These outdated solutions have become more costly and complicated to implement, install, manage, and maintain.SD-WAN offers unlimited capabilities for accessing the benefits of the cloud and Internet. ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that CrowdReviews.com has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 22nd International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 5–7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. CrowdReviews.com is a transparent online platform for determining which products and services are the best based on the opinion of the crowd. The crowd consists of Internet users that have experienced products and services first-hand and have an interest in letting other potential buye...
Business professionals no longer wonder if they'll migrate to the cloud; it's now a matter of when. The cloud environment has proved to be a major force in transitioning to an agile business model that enables quick decisions and fast implementation that solidify customer relationships. And when the cloud is combined with the power of cognitive computing, it drives innovation and transformation that achieves astounding competitive advantage.
Founded in 2000, Chetu Inc. is a global provider of customized software development solutions and IT staff augmentation services for software technology providers. By providing clients with unparalleled niche technology expertise and industry experience, Chetu has become the premiere long-term, back-end software development partner for start-ups, SMBs, and Fortune 500 companies. Chetu is headquartered in Plantation, Florida, with thirteen offices throughout the U.S. and abroad.
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that "IoT Now" was named media sponsor of CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO 2018 New York, which will take place on November 11-13, 2018 in New York City, NY. IoT Now explores the evolving opportunities and challenges facing CSPs, and it passes on some lessons learned from those who have taken the first steps in next-gen IoT services.