Ostia Solutions DevOps

Using Portus in existing and future development and testing efforts has the following advantages:

  • Ultimately each tester can potentially have a system to test against. While a system per tester may be overkill, at least each group of developers can get access to a test system that only they are using.
  • Using virtual or ‘synthetic data’ avoids any connection with production data and avoids the need to mask production datasets which, in itself, can be risky.
  • Time and expense savings are made as:
    • Teams have permanent virtual access to all of the systems they need without impacting or being impacted by others.
    • Expensive core systems are no longer required for system testing.
    • Expensive ‘pay per use’ external services are no longer needed for system testing.

The Portus concept revolutionizes the testing process by using technology to solve labour intensive and error prone practices in use today.

Today’s application development projects aim to deliver applications to mobile devices including smart phones, tablets and the plethora of other mobile devices out there.

These projects have a number of things in common including the following:

  • Massive investment must be put into the prototyping of the application or it will simply fail at the first hurdle.
  • The first version of the application must be delivered sometimes in weeks of its inception.
  • Updates to improve the application are expected sometimes daily but at least weekly.

These requirements have turned the typical Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC) on its head:

  • Gone are the days when requirements can be gathered and evaluated over a number of months: customers want to hold and see the prototype of what will be delivered
  • The thoughts of a first version of an application being delivered after a number of years would create laughter amongst today’s customers: delays of months lead to loss of interest and missed opportunity
  • Quarterly release cycles (or less frequently) simply wouldn’t be tolerated: we live in the age of "now" and if something isn’t implemented in the product quickly, customers will move on to a competitive app offering better features and more frequent updates.

The term “Continuous Delivery” is trending more and more in relation to app development projects. Essentially this satisfies the requirement to continuously deliver an improving application with outstanding quality to your customers.

Training often proves an expensive activity because the full production system with all its complexities must be replicated to offer a full training environment for use. This will often lead to contention for systems with other parts of the organization. Sharing systems cause other issues as resetting the system to a state where a standard set of training modules can be provided takes time, effort and cost.

Using Portus service and data virtualization capability it’s possible to create clever training systems that can be deployed on demand and with a fixed state to start with. The people being trained do not care whether they are talking to the real back office system or Ostia’s simulated services once the user experience is as they will see it during their day to day jobs.

In fact each person being trained can potentially have their own tests system to use thus avoiding any possibility of trainees standing on each other’s toes.

The Skytap functionality that Ostia uses to host this capability also allows a test system to be parked with its existing state intact. This has the advantage that it is not costing money and is ready to be restarted for the next part of a given course. For example, if a course is being run over a number of days, the test environments can be brought down or ‘parked’ at night and restarted the following morning which saves on running costs.

portus continous delivery diagram
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