Why Should You Learn Infrastructure as Code as a DevOps Engineer? | by Lakshmi Narasimman V | Narasimman Tech | May, 2022

Why Should You Learn Infrastructure as Code as a DevOps Engineer? | by Lakshmi Narasimman V | Narasimman Tech | May, 2022


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Dynamic systems for the cloud age – Kief Morris

This blog post introduces you to the concept of Infrastructure as a Code, also known as IaC.

Introduction

Today, companies like Microsoft, Uber, Netflix, and even banks are using cloud infrastructure, but a few years ago, large corporations thought that the cloud was only for start-ups and small organizations. Automation and cloud technologies remove barriers to making changes to production systems, but this creates new challenges. It is becoming increasingly difficult to manually manage all your servers as your infrastructure grows and new services are published frequently. This is where the concept of Infrastructure as a code and its tools come in handy.

The infrastructure as a code

The concept of infrastructure as code (IaC) is simple, define your entire infrastructure as code. This approach is based on software development practices. For example, if you want to deploy an EC2 instance to AWS, traditionally use the AWS or AWS-CLI console, but using a popular IaC tool called Terraform, write a configuration file, which consists of your EC2 configurations written in a similar way to a defined function. in programming. You can use automation to test changes to your code before applying them to your systems.

Should you build first and then automate? No!

Getting started with Infrastructure requires a lot of effort and has a sharp curve. You need to configure tools and services to automate infrastructure delivery, especially if you are adopting a new infrastructure platform. You may think that you can supply the infrastructure quickly manually and worry about automating it later. But this is a bad idea because automation should allow for faster delivery, even for new stuff. Automation makes it easier and easier to write automated tests, and you can quickly fix a problem and rebuild it. What’s worse is that the manually configured system is harder to automate.

Three basic practices for infrastructure as a code

According to Kief Morris, author of Book Infrastructure as Code, there are three important practices for implementing infrastructure as code:

Set everything as code

Defining all your stuff “as code” is a basic practice for making changes quickly and reliably. Here are a couple of reasons why:

  1. Reusability – If you define something as code, you can create multiple instances of it. You can share with other people, destroy existing infrastructure, and redeploy with the same settings.
  2. Consistency – No matter how long you run, things built from code are built the same way. This makes the behavior of the system predictable, makes testing more reliable, and allows for continuous testing and delivery.
  3. Transparency – Everyone can look at the code and see how the infrastructure is built, and they can learn how to use the code in their infrastructure.

Please try and enter all the work in progress.

Build small, simple pieces that you can change independently.

Benefits of infrastructure as a code

  • Fast delivery – Manual configuration of the infrastructure slows down the delivery time of the product. With Infrastructure as Code, your infrastructure is stable, consistent, and easily modifiable. It is a facilitator for fast delivery of value.
  • Reduced risks and errors – Manual configuration of the infrastructure is prone to errors and risky. But using IaC reduces the effort and risk of making changes to your infrastructure.
  • Self-documentation – If you set up your infrastructure manually, it’s easy to forget and documenting it can be time consuming. With Infrastructure as code, it self-documents like any other code.
  • Visibility – With IaC, everyone can know the current configuration of the infrastructure. Anyone with permission to access the code can see what the current settings are.
  • Easy to collaborate – Because your infrastructure is written as code, it’s easy to share and collaborate with other team members, especially when a new member joins the team. You can share your settings with other computers to implement the same infrastructure.
  • Easy to climb – With Infrastructure as Code, you can easily scale your infrastructure just by copying the existing code or adding a few extra lines.
  • The use of IaC enables you or your team to have a reliable, secure, and cost-effective infrastructure, and makes government, security, and compliance controls visible.
  • You can use a version control system, such as git, to keep track of changes to your infrastructure and return to it if you wish.

There are many benefits to using Code Infrastructure tools over the manual configuration of your infrastructure.

Infrastructure as code tools

  1. Terraform – Terraform is a popular infrastructure code (IaC) tool used to provide infrastructure. Terraform allows you to easily supply and manage multiple cloud providers. You can use Terraform to supply and maintain Docker containers, Kubernetes clusters, and more.
  2. AWS CloudFormation: AWS CloudFormation is a service provided by Amazon Web Services to help you provide infrastructure to AWS. They offer close integration with their other services.
  3. Ansible – Ansible can be used to supply infrastructure, but it is best to combine it with Terraform. You can supply and maintain infrastructure using Ansible.
  4. Azure Resource Manager
  5. Google Cloud Deployment Manager
  6. Titella
  7. chef
  8. Salt Stack

Choosing the right tools

Depending on the tool, it may be mandatory or declarative.

Imperative vs. Declarative

  • A declarative approach also keeps track of the current state of objects in your system, making managing your infrastructure easier. Some tools are Terraform, CloudFormation, SaltStack and Puppet.
  • Instead, an imperative approach defines the specific commands needed to achieve the desired configuration, and these commands must be executed in the correct order. Some tools that use an imperative approach are Chef and Ansible.

Why does IaC matter for DevOps?

Infrastructure as a code is an important part of the implementation of DevOps practices and the continuous integration / continuous delivery (CI / CD) cycle. A developer can run a script to get their infrastructure up and running. So that application deployments don’t stop waiting for infrastructure, and system administrators don’t handle time-consuming manual processes.

Conclusion

To get the value of cloud automation and infrastructure, you need a Cloud Age mindset. This means taking advantage of speed to improve the quality and quality of construction to gain speed. Automating your infrastructure requires work, especially when you learn how to do it. But doing so helps you make changes, including building the system first.

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