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Best of TechBeacon 2017: IT Ops in the DevOps era

Jaikumar Vijayan, Freelance writer

The growing adoption of DevOps methods, container-based computing, and serverless approaches is driving new requirements for IT operations teams and forcing a rethink of long-held notions and practices for managing enterprise IT operations.

TechBeacon's top 10 IT Ops stories for 2017 examine some of the biggest changes that IT operations management and staff are having to deal with today and offer practical advice on how to understand and manage those changes. Our stories cover the changes that are being driven by general DevOps practices, such as the growing capacity crunch, the changes resulting from serverless computing, and the operational impact of the increasing use of containers in production environments.

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How IT Ops can avoid the DevOps capacity crunch

IT operations management teams are under growing stress from having to balance their organization's security and operational requirements with the near-constant deployment demands of DevOps teams. The trend is squeezing already overloaded IT Ops teams to the breaking point and undermining their businesses' ability to operate. Rundeck co-founder Damon Edwards explains how self-service operations can help IT Ops better handle both the planned and, increasingly, unplanned work that is common in DevOps environments.

Epic IT Ops fails: The 5 worst blunders of 2017

IT Ops failures were quite the spectacle in 2017. Ericka Chickowskireviews the mistakes and mishaps of others you can glean some valuable lessons—even if it is simply developing an awareness that the cost estimates for these issues are probably not overinflated. If anything, they may be coming in a bit low. Learn from the blunders of Amazon, Equifax, British Airways, GitLab and others.

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The business case for IT4IT: Why you need it. How to build it.

The Open Group's IT4IT reference architecture is designed to give organizations a framework for identifying and optimally managing the IT activities that help them become more competitive in business. IT4IT provides a resource for IT transformation, service management, and tools interoperability, but a lack of understanding and management buy-in is holding back adoption, says Daniel Warfield senior enterprise architect at CC and C Solutions. He offers his perspective on what IT4IT really means and how it can help.


The state of ITSM: Top trends and challenges for 2018

One of the prominent trends this year has been the collision of DevOps with traditional ITSM methodologies. John P. Mello reports that companies which embrace these new ideas have already begun accelerating their investments in analytics, management, orchestration, and new organizational models for IT, and they can expect a big payoff down the road. 

With immutable infrastructure, your systems can rise from the dead

Immutable infrastructure, built from service components that perform a limited function, can substantially reduce potential points of failure and improve the ability for engineers to offer support and resolve issues. However, in order to implement it, you should be willing to scrap the ideas and processes associated with tools such as Chef, Puppet, and Salt. Mike Johnston, infrastructure engineer at, offers the lowdown on how immutable infrastructure concepts can apply in Kubernetes cluster environments.

An essential guide to the serverless ecosystem

Serverless computing approaches promise to improve security and operational practices, speed time-to-market, and enable pay-as-you-go pricing. While you might understand the essentials of a serverless architecture, do you really know what a serverless ecosystem looks like or all the options you have with it? Starbucks consultant Rafal Gancarz explains the nuts and bolts of serverless architectures and reviews the tools and frameworks you can use to build systems with a serverless stack.

Serverless computing has landed: How IT Ops can adapt

Serverless computing architectures eliminate the need for always-on server systems sitting behind every application and frees developers from having to write for specific physical or virtual machines in the cloud. What is less understood about the model, however, is its impact on IT operations management, service management, data center orchestration, and cloud management strategies. David Linthicum, senior vice president of Cloud Technology Partners, highlights the impact of serverless computing on IT operations and offers tips on how IT Ops should adapt.

30 essential container technology tools and resources

Container technology has transformed life not just for developers but also for testers, analysts, operations teams, and IT. But in order to get full value from it, you need to have the right mix of products and services for building, running, and managing containers efficiently. Excelon Development's managing consultant, Mattew Heusser, offers the lowdown on 30 essential tools and resources—including container architecture, deployment, management, and security products—that every organization should have on its shortlist when deploying containers.

The top 5 container adoption and management challenges for IT Ops

More companies are investing in containers, and those that are already using the technology are spending more on growing its use across their organizations. Much of the growth has come from developers who have adopted containers because the technology has made it easier for them to build and distribute applications. But with containers beginning to enter production environments, IT operations management and staff face new questions and challenges. Freelance writer Jennifer Zaino explains what some of those concerns are and how to deal with them.

Containers demand new data center designs: 5 steps to survive

Data centers are not typically designed to support container technologies, so the growing use of containers in production has begun to raise several important questions for data center managers. Among them are questions such as what it would take to re-architect data center infrastructure for containers, what operational tools and processes can help, and how data centers can be orchestrated for container computing. Cloud Technology Partners' David Linthicum offers tips on how data centers can survive the transition to container-based computing.

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