Chef Integrates Multiple Open Source IT Automation Projects

Mike Vizard
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The Rise of Integrated IT Infrastructure Systems: Top Enterprise Use Cases

At a ChefConf 2016 conference today, Chef announced that it will make it simpler for IT organizations to acquire a wide range of open source technologies designed to automate everything from the way machines are configured to the entire application.

Rather than having to navigate separate open source projects, Ken Cheney, vice president of business development at Chef, says Chef Automate combines the core Chef project, an InSpec project for automating compliance, and a new Habitat platform for embedding IT automation into applications in a single suite of software that is commercially supported by Chef.

By combining all those projects together via a common dashboard, Cheney says IT organizations not only gain more visibility into various IT automation projects; they can also construct integrated workflows across all those projects.

Cheney says that as the challenges associated with managing IT at scale continue to escalate, more IT organizations are relying on IT automation. In fact, Cheney says 900 commercial customers are now using Chef technologies across tens of millions of machines. The Chef client has been downloaded more than 37 million times, with an average of more than 1.5 million downloads per month. Total bookings for Chef grew more than 80 percent year-over-year in the second quarter of 2016.

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To help further fuel that growth, Chef today also announced its first certification program to help make it easier for organizations to identify IT professionals with dedicated Chef skills. Those IT professionals, says Cheney, can now easily command six-figure salaries.

In general, emerging technologies that, for example, make use of microservices are simultaneously making IT more agile and complex. In essence, there are more IT pieces and parts than ever interacting with one another at levels of unprecedented velocity. Like it or not, it’s not economically feasible for most IT organizations to keep throwing labor at that IT management equation. As such, the real issue facing most IT organizations now is not whether they will embrace IT automation, but rather to what degree.


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