Every IT project has two components: hardware and software. The cloud provides agility that helps meet the needs of both aspects. Because there are no procurement and provisioning delays, cloud helps businesses get any new hardware projects need quickly. On the software side, clouds provide many tools needed to streamline the development pipeline and enable a continuous delivery process.

Pipelines Smooth Out the Application Flow

Traditional development processes are lumpy, not level. Phases are gated, with entry and exit criteria, but projects don’t simply pass through the gates to the next phase. They bump up against the gates, even when the criteria are met, until resources are available to start up the next phase. Project deployments are either delayed, or they’re rushed through phases and have problematic deliveries that result in releases being backed out or emergency fixes deployed.

Building a pipeline using the tools available in Google Cloud Platform smooths out the turbulence in the delivery process. High levels of automation allow the work product at each phase of development to proceed immediately into the next phase. Things move fast without being rushed, so there are fewer errors and less rework is required. Projects complete faster, but with higher quality and less risk. Ultimately, this creates a positive impact on a business’s bottom line, by allowing the business to more quickly adapt to market changes.

Pipeline Requirements

Software development is a creative activity, but many of its tasks can be routinized and automated. These include the processes of building a deployable package, installing that package, and running tests. The results of the test can automatically trigger moving on to the next development phase or alert the development team of issues that need to be addressed before the release can proceed.

Building that automated process requires tools, including a repository for source code; automation that detects changes in the repository and builds a new version; and automation that deploys the new version to a test server and applies tests. Depending on the business’s policies, they may want automation that detects when tests are passed and deploys new builds directly to production.

Google Cloud Platform offers developers the necessary tools to construct a pipeline and tailor its automatic actions to match their development process and business policies. The tools include:

Cloud Source Repositories: Git repositories that integrate with GCP’s other tools

Cloud Build: build automation that includes additional features such as native Docker support and vulnerability scanning

Container Registry: Docker image management integrated with automated deployment pipelines

In addition to Google’s own tools, there are numerous third-party products available in GCP that assist with build pipelines, including Jenkins and Spinnaker.

With a continuous integration/continuous delivery pipeline in Google Cloud Platform, development doesn’t get bogged down with manual processes that shepherd projects into production. VAST IT Services provides support for Google Cloud Platform to help businesses leverage all of its tools to get more value from the cloud. Contact us to learn how to set up a delivery pipeline in Google Cloud Platform and gain the benefits of true agility in the cloud.

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