How DevOps Helps Move Your Automated Testing to the Cloud
Cloud-based test automation is the key to accelerating software quality. Provisioning a server in three weeks is no longer acceptable—QA departments should be thinking about how to provision a server in about three minutes.
By moving software testing and development to hybrid cloud environments, organizations can increase productivity, accelerate software delivery, and improve software quality. DevOps—enterprise approach for continuous delivery of software—can play a big part in the success of this process.
As an IT discipline, DevOps brings order to an otherwise chaotic and complex world of application development, testing, deployment, scaling, and monitoring. DevOps minimizes turf wars between siloed, independent teams and enables an integrated approach to software development, testing, and delivery that reflects the needs of the entire application lifecycle.
DevOps strives for more collaborative, productive relationships among QA, development, and operations teams—an approach that carries many advantages, including fewer bugs, faster fixes, and increased visibility, over traditional development processes.
By implementing a hybrid cloud architecture, organizations can accelerate DevOps and produce better-quality software faster by breaking down traditional barriers between software quality departments, developers, and operations personnel. For example, developers can share copies of their lab environments with QA.
Hybrid cloud computing enables secure, role-based collaboration that can drive accelerated software development and delivery. Moving software quality initiatives to hybrid cloud environments enables QA to produce higher-quality software that is more in tune with user needs. In addition, virtualization technology can be used to automate software testing, allowing organizations to provide the elasticity to scale resources to optimize both software development and quality.
The ability to tear down and rebuild a test environment in minutes—and then to do it over and over again—gives QA unprecedented control over provisioning the resources needed to test software. Automating this process so that it is visible to change control, but doesn’t require intervention or special approval to implement, reduces the time needed for testing.
Predictable workloads are preferable for enterprise data centers; dynamic workloads are ideal for cloud computing. Predictable workloads are core to operations, but enterprises are increasingly moving dynamic workloads to the cloud because they have unpredictable capacity needs and require collaboration and frequent changes.
For example, a software development process entering into the late stages of performance testing will require increased computing and networking resources. The organization would either need to have spare capacity handy and idle or would need to rapidly procure, prepare, and provision new equipment to meet these demands.
In today’s volatile economy, few businesses are willing to plan and purchase IT resources based on a forecasted “high-water mark” of demand, only to have this equipment remain otherwise underutilized most of the time. The hybrid cloud model provides for dynamic capacity management, and automated solutions are the key to providing QA departments with the resources needed to continuously improve software quality while accelerating software delivery.