Cloud automation relates to the use of software to reduce manual infrastructure engineering and simplify cloud operations. In Layman's terms – it's a code that controls infrastructure. Cloud Automation is used to off-load infrastructure-related administration tasks like infrastructure deployment, management, and maintenance. It's a modern concept with multiple tools like third-party - Ansible, Chef, Terraform, Puppet, and platform-specific – Azure Automation, AWS CloudFormation.
Cloud automation has a critical role to play in the modern-day enterprise.
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Infrastructure as Code: This is the most common use case for cloud automation. Here, cloud automation tools and processes use resource pools to define configurations items such as VMs, containers, and virtual networks. Then, required application components and services are re-added to these configuration items, further assembled to form a complete operational environment for deploying workloads.
Workload Management: Considered as a crucial part of the workload lifecycle management, cloud automation helps admins remove unused and unwanted long-term entities and their configuration items. It helps a lot in workload management by facilitating ways for automatic scaling tasks such as adding more resources or removing excess or unwanted instances.
Version Control: Cloud automation services offer version control through consistent setups that align with administrative regulations and policies. These setups help businesses track resource usage and users, predict resource usage, and improve service quality.
App Development: Continuous delivery and continuous integration are critical to the success of agile development driven by DevOps culture. The success here relies on the speed of resource deployment and scalability in testing software releases. While public clouds are already capable of doing so, private clouds are not that successful. Cloud automation tools can be the savior in adding such capabilities to any of the cloud variants.
Hybrid Cloud: In a hybrid cloud environment, cloud automation automates tasks related to a private cloud environment and enables integration with public cloud platforms such as Azure, GCP, and AWS.
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