With an average of 330 application deployments per day, the customer turned to Tech Data’s Talos software, to help automate middleware configuration and application deployment.


The customer and their needs

The customer is an international organisation within the banking services industry. Their business relied upon many different software applications, a large number of which they developed and managed in-house. Keeping the applications current or developing and launching new applications was no easy task. The customer was expecting between 40,000 and 50,000 software deployments over more than 500 applications in the next calendar year. Just managing this volume of deployments is challenging and requires specialist software to manage the configuration of the middleware. The customer’s platform had been built using bespoke software which was based upon IBM’s Rational Automation Framework for WebSphere and Rational Build Forge. However, with the software at the end of its life, it had reached the end of support. Relying on unsupported software represented a huge business risk. The customer needed something else that was up-to-date. They turned to Talos.

The customer had ambitious goals

Talos had to manage all the customer’s middleware configuration changes and deployments. This included:

  • Replace Rational Automation Framework
  • Handle post installation configuration of a middleware instance
  • Automate configuration changes
  • Automate deployment of applications
  • Integrate with Jenkins
  • Integrate with custom deployment tool.

Given the volume of deployments, Talos had to prove it could be highly automated, robust and reliable. The customer stressed the move to Talos had to be straightforward and painless for the organisation. Neither could they afford to slow up or miss scheduled deployments. To minimise the risk to the business, Talos had to work alongside the existing platform on a temporary basis before it was decommissioned.  In addition to this, the customer wanted Talos to help them to prepare to move to a cloud infrastructure by 2020.

Tech Data and Talos stepped up to the challenge

Tech Data’s middleware and DevOps experts were careful to document and scope the requirements.  The customer’s environment was complex.

Once the scope was approved by the customer, Tech Data’s engineers set about detailing how the solution would work in a proposal, which the customer reviewed and signed off.

Tech Data then worked alongside the customer’s own IT team to set up Talos. Minimising the impact during the transition was always at the forefront of the engineers’ minds. With 480 IBM WebSphere Cells that needed to be included in the deployment, and configured, plus the old platform to consider, Tech Data’s engineers set up Rest APIs and created application templates. During a six week pilot, these were extensively tested in various different scenarios until the customer was completely happy that Talos had proved it was able to handle the automation requirements.

Fantastic project results

Talos has been able to help the customer mitigate risk to the business by replacing a product that was out of support. The customer is far happier knowing that Tech Data will continue to support Talos and evolve it overtime.

Talos can discover and manage middleware instances in the cloud or on premise. It can be directly integrated with various public clouds. This is a very important feature which will help future proof the solution when the customer is ready to migrate from on premise to the cloud, something the customer’s old solution didn’t have the flexibility to offer.

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