DevOps: Putting It Into Practice


7:30am - 9:00am   Registration & Coffee

9:00am  - 9:20am   Introduction to the Day & DevOps for Higher Education 
Speaker: David Blezard, Senior IT Manager, University of New Hampshire

While DevOps is a hot topic across many organizations ranging from tech startups to massive dot-com companies to traditional firms, DevOps has seen little penetration into the higher education IT world, as evidenced by only a handful of mentions on the EDUCAUSE website. Based on our experience with DevOps practices, we believe that they are very relevant and important to higher education IT operations, just as elsewhere.  This introductory session will review the ways and practices of DevOps while also exploring the issue of when, why, and where it makes sense in higher ed IT.


9:20am  - 10:15 am   A Cloud-inspired Implementation of DevOps in an On-Premises Operations Environment
Speakers: 
Richard Nickle, Technical Services Engineer, College of the Holy Cross
Patrick Gemme, Network Engineer, College of the Holy Cross

 - Where we were in 2016
 - DevOps in 2016 that led to continuous integration and deployment to our cloud-hosted application infrastructure. [ themes:  Gitlab/SA Manage/Web/Docker ]
 - Deployment of converged infrastructure in 2017 that enabled testing of integration with Docker infrastructure. [ themes:  HyperV/Docker/Infrastructure 
 - Embracement of Docker in 2018 to deploy several applications. [ themes: Docker/GitLab/Swarms/Availability/Performance ]
 - Where we are now and where we are expecting to pursue more convergence opportunities. [ themes: Future Direction ]
 
10:15am – 10:25am Break
 
10:25am - 11:20 am   From Two to Thousands 
Speakers:  
David Blezard
, Senior IT Manager, University of New Hampshire
Chris Schneider, System Administrator, University of New Hampshire

Over the last several years, the University of New Hampshire has transitioned our web hosting environment from two servers that ran most everything to now 1000’s of independent, isolated Docker containers that provide a far more robust environment.  Along the way we have adopted many DevOps tools and practices including Gitlab, deployment pipelines, automation including a standardized script execution tool with RunDeck, and Docker Swarm to perform orchestration.  We will also share how we have changed the ways in which we work with our development team to create shared responsibility and more rapid innovation.

11:20am - 12:10 pm   ELK: Monitoring and Data for DevOps 
Speakers:  
Angelo Santabarbara, Director Networks & Systems, Siena College
Ryan Decker, Principal Network & Systems Engineer, Siena College

Logs act as a valuable tool to assist with the insights required by the different stages of the DevOps lifecycle.  Logs can be a single data stream for debugging, performance testing, production monitoring, production troubleshooting, and analytics.  All this data is difficult to aggregate, store, scale, and search.  Previous solutions at Siena College performed slowly and were inefficient.  Enter ELK Stack.  A combination of Elasticsearch, Logstash, and Kibana that provide an open source, scalable, flexible, and efficient search and analytics engine.

12:10pm - 1:10pm   Lunch

1:10pm – 2:05 pm   Finding the Right Amount of DevOps Processes 
Speaker: Ian Rifkin, Director of Data & Systems Integration, Brandeis University

Brandeis University is decreasing Web application development as we increasingly rely on vendor solutions, many of which are SaaS, which shifts our role to more of an integrator. There are many fantastic DevOps tools but it can be a challenge to find the right ones that will be a worthwhile investment. We do not deliver a single unified product so oftentimes continuous integration feels out of place. This talk will cover how we historically have found the right amount of DevOps processes as well as where we need to focus improving; when to change vs. when the status quo is good enough; and why change is slow. 
 
2:05pm - 2:15pm   Break

 
2:15pm - 3:00pm   Panel Discussion
Ask your questions of all of the presenters from today.  We will gather ideas for topics of discussion throughout the course of the day.  Starting with those gathered plus other things that come up in the course of the discussion, this is a chance to bring up your school’s unique concerns and situations to see how we can collectively tackle those challenges.
 
3:00pm   End