DevOps Starter Pack

If you didn’t know about it, Red Hat is running a DevSecOps Roadshow right now!  They’re going on tour from city to city spreading the good word of Red Hat OpenShift and the value it delivers in a DevSecOps pipeline, and the benefit it draws into the Software Development Lifecycle.  I was fortunate enough to join them in Atlanta and I’ve got to say it is a treasure trove of information so if there’s one in a city near you, try to clear a spot on your calendar for it because this is something you don’t want to miss!

As many of you know, one of the things that sets Fierce Software apart and a cut above the rest is our ability to deploy workshops almost anywhere.  In fact, we recently executed on a DevSecOps workshop in Ft Worth for some of the friendly folk over at Red Hat.  During this workshop, we started with high-level 10,000ft concepts of what DevOps, Continuous Integration, Continuous Delivery, and Containers are.  With that, we had a workshop session where we worked directly with containers in our Containers 101 Workshop. With the next workshop session, we spent time on DevOps, and how security needs to “shift-left” into every step of the Software Development Lifecycle instead of being an afterthought that causes the process sometimes to start anew.

Over those days our conversations naturally focused on what DevOps means to different parts of the organization, how everyone is excited about employing these strategies and tools, and I’ve got to say, the enthusiasm was palpable.

 

DevOps and YOU!

DevOps has many meanings and different entanglements depending on what hat you wear.  On the Operations side of the house, it means automation, control, and ease of management.  Over in the Developer encampment, they see the wonders of having the resources they need, removing manual development labor, and better quality code.  Universally DevOps means a culture shift and a technological investment in standardization, automation, and optimization.

Navigating the vast DevOps landscapes can sometimes be difficult.  There are so many collaboration platforms, some with different communication features, and varying integrations.  If you think there are too many types of cookies to choose from, there are even more source code, asset, and artifact storage solutions out there.  Now let’s not forget about integrating security, as we shift security left into each step of our pipeline instead of as a bolt-on after-thought.

With this in mind, I’d like to introduce you to the new Fierce Software DevOps Starter Pack!  Quickly wrap your mind some of the core components in an Enterprise DevOps Environment, and drive innovation across your organization with some key platforms and methods.  Of course, we’re able to help put these solutions together and get them in your hands fast so think of us as a one-stop-shop!

Welcome to the Fierce Software DevOps Starter Pack!

  • Start with Culture (just like in Civilizations)

    First thing’s first, we need to get everyone on the same page.  This means increasing thoughtful communication and productivity across teams.  Our friends over at Atlassian fill this need with their best-of-breed Jira, Confluence, and Trello platforms.  Track your projects and progress, communicate without the distractions, and organize and collaborate in one central place.

  • Manageable Source Code Management

    Centralize your repository in-house or in the cloud with GitLab and integrate with the same tools you use today.

  • Continuous Things with Enterprise Jenkins

    Jenkins Sprawl is a real thing, almost in some dictionaries in fact.  Wrangle in these disparate Jenkins environments lurking around every corner cubicle, manage build environments across teams with Team Masters, and give your star running-back Jenkins the field it needs to excel with Cloudbees Core and the new CloudBees Enterprise Jenkins Support.

  • Spot the landmines

    Every DevOps strategy needs to start employing security in every step of the workflow.  This can range from binary analysis tools to container scanning, the possibilities are endless but it’s important to not carry security measure out in batch at the end of the workflow.  As we integrate these different security mechanisms into the fold at different stages we start to see our security methods “shift-left” from the end of the pipeline into earlier stages.  Get started with Static Code Analysis and find the common issues, potential vulnerabilities, and the general health of your code base by employing Continuous Inspection with SonarQube.

  • Polygot Platforms

    Give your developers not only the resources they need but also the platform they need, and not just some developers, all your developers.  By standardizing with Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform you can enable every DevOps workflow your developers could want across all the languages they use such as Java, Node.JS, PHP, and more.

  • Visionary Insight

    Keep your environment from turning into the Wild Wild West.  Add an additional layer of security with SysDig Secure and gain valuable analytics and metrics across your entire environment by harnessing the rich insights of SysDig Monitor.  Naturally, the SysDig Platform integrates with Red Hat OpenShift, CloudBees Core, and every other part seamlessly.

Next Steps

Of course, this is only the start in many DevOps journeys. If you’ve had a chance to take a look at the Cloud Native Landscape, you may notice many more application stacks, programs, and DevOps-y drop-ins.  Just because you’ve heard about a solution being used somewhere else does not mean it’s a good fit for your particular DevOps pipelines.  We at Fierce Software have had the great pleasure of guiding organizations along their DevOps journey and seeing them grow along the way.  Contact us and a Fierce Software Account Executive will promptly respond to start the process of helping you and your team along the way to very own DevOps strategy.  Outside of getting a quote in your hands quickly, we can help you strategize and architect your solution, set up proof-of-concepts and demos, coordinate trial subscriptions, and of course, can deliver workshops on-site to help better enable your organization.  Just drop us a line and let us know how we can help you as well!

Zero to Hero: Enterprise DevOps with CloudBees and Red Hat

If you’ve had a look at our line card then you can probably deduce that we like Open-Source, yeah that one’s easy. We’ve partnered with some of the biggest Open-Source leaders and really enjoy and value the relationships we’ve built over time. In fact, we just recently were awarded Public Sector Partner of the Year by the kind folk over at CloudBees!

With all the hub-bub around DevOps, I thought it only proper to shine a light on why we love CloudBees and their solutions. There are numerous reasons why we think CloudBees is great, to keep things quaint, I’ll give a few reasons why CloudBees Core is the definitive way to go when deploying Jenkins:

  1. Turn-key deployment – Are you running a self-administered Kubernetes cluster? EKS/AKS/GKS in the cloud? Red Hat OpenShift (ooh! that’s us!)? No problem, deploying a tested and supported enterprise Jenkins platform takes only a few steps and can be done in no time flat.
  2. Management and security – Ever wish Jenkins came with interoperability and security tested plugins? What about RBAC, built in SSL through the whole stack, and tools to manage your environments? All first-class passengers in CloudBees Core.
  3. Container orchestration and Team Masters – Break away from the massive monolithic Jenkins master, give each team their own easy to manage the environment and have each Team Master deployment live in its own container pod.

There are way too many reasons why CloudBees is the way to go when rolling Jenkins, but before we go too deep down that rabbit hole I think it best to show just how easy it is to deploy a new CloudBees Core environment on a Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform cluster! Then we’ll jump into creating a Team Master and deploying a simple pipeline. I think Elvis said it best, “a little less conversation, a little action” so without further adieu, let’s jump in!

Nurse, I need 9 EC2s of Kubernetes! Stat!

We’ll be relying on the tried, tested, and trusted of Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform that is built on the security and stability of Red Hat Enterprise Linux. The OpenShift cluster will be deployed on a public cloud service, Amazon Web Service and it’s one of the easiest steps since we’ll be using the AWS OpenShift QuickStart. This is an AWS CloudFormation template that was developed as a collaboration between Amazon and Red Hat engineers and it works rather well and is properly engineered into 3 availability zones. The process takes about an hour and a half so maybe do it over lunch.

Architecture of the OpenShift Container Platform cluster in a new AWS VPS. Source: AWS

Architecture of the OpenShift Container Platform cluster in a new AWS VPS. Source: AWS

We’ll be deploying it into a new VPC and if you’re planning on doing the same here are a few things you’ll need in addition:

  1. An AWS Account
  2. A FQDN or Fully Qualified Domain Name in AWS Route 53
  3. A Red Hat Network account with a few Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform subscriptions, which is important to know since all the documentation says is “You need an account and subscription” and not what or how many. Request a quote today.

CloudBees Core in the Cloud

Now that we have a rock-solid Red Hat OpenShift cluster running across 3 AZs in AWS, let’s get to using it.
We’ll be deploying CloudBees Core, front and center.

Where & How

In case you’re not familiar with CloudBees and their product catalog, they vend their solutions as many industry leaders do and that’s via subscriptions. This gives many advantages such as a lower CapEx, prevents lengthy vendor lock-in, and ensures you get the latest versions without being charged for upgrades. You can request a 30-day trial of many of their products including CloudBees Core, otherwise you know where to get the goods. Once your subscription is settled, head on over to go.cloudbees.com and grab the OpenShift installer template.

Once you’ve procured the package, you’ll need to make sure you have a few things set up on the OpenShift side of the house.  You’ll need the oc command-line application installed locally (or on your remote bastion host), a persistent volume available to your OpenShift cluster, and a domain in Route 53. Those requirements and the steps to install CloudBees Core on OpenShift are detailed and available in their wonderful documentation.

Client Masters, Managed Masters, and Team Masters!  Oh my!

With an enterprise-ready Jenkins deployment using CloudBees Core, we’re moving away from the large and lumbering monolithic Jenkins installs that break when you update a single plugin because it was incompatible with some other plugin that you forgot about and didn’t test for.  Now, you can still use your external and previously deployed masters and connect them to CloudBees Core.  These connected masters are called Client Masters, a master running on Windows is an example of a Client Master.

Managed Masters come with many options, tools, and configuration settings if you want to get down in the weeds of setting up your Jenkins environment.  This delivers a lot of flexibility and value, however, maybe you don’t want to spend the time administering your Managed Masters then there’s Team Masters.

An example setup of how you can plan Team Masters

Team Masters make it to where every team has their own Jenkins master which makes it even easier to create and manage continuous delivery.  Team Masters allow teams to work independently and still have all the power of CloudBees Core.  This means enterprise-grade security, on-demand provisioning, resilient infrastructure, and easy management are all standard parts of CloudBees Core.

Next Steps

We’ve got this steam engine built and on the tracks, where do we go from here?  This is probably one of the greatest questions in beginning CI/CD as there are endless directions you can take your DevOps platform, especially when it’s powered by Red Hat OpenShift and CloudBees Core.

There are many steps involved when building your DevOps pipeline.  Bringing your developers and operations team onto the same level playing field is paramount as successful DevOps practices are part of a culture shift.  Then you have to analyze your resources, catalog your applications, plan your build processes together, so on and so forth.

Once you’ve got things planned out, it’s time to get your hands dirty.  Go out there, grab the trials and start testing, or ask your VAR partner (I know of a good one…) to set up a proof of concept demo and walk you through.  We, in fact, can provide specially catered workshops almost anywhere, provide professional services when needed, in addition to getting you all the right solutions your organization needs so don’t hesitate to contact us!

Giving back: Contributing to Open-Source Software

If you know a thing or two about us here at Fierce Software™, it’s that we live for Open-Source Software. Really, we mean that. Our strongest partnerships are with those around open-source solutions, such as Red Hat, Hortonworks, CloudBees, and Elastic. I could go on and on about the benefits and value of open-source, but let’s just say that open-source is the only thing that makes sense and it is what the future will be built on.

Speaking of building, we’re not afraid of doing work ourselves.

I am proud to announce the public release of the unifi_controller_facts – UniFi Controller Facts Ansible Module!

Background

Fierce Software™ is the organizer of Ansible NoVA, the 3rd largest Ansible User Group in North America. At our last meetup, I gave a presentation on part of my Franken-lab. Part of that amalgamation of a network was a project where I had an Amazon Echo fire off an Alexa Skill (by voice obviously), and the skill would communicate with Ansible Tower. The Alexa skill had some intents to get Tower’s stats and fire jobs. It would fire jobs such as maybe like restarting my home network core if needed. To do so, I created some middleware with Laravel Lumen and paired with the UniFi API would, yada yada…either way, at this point you can tell it was complicated.

In the development of this process, I thought it’d be much easier to have an Ansible module that could connect to and control a UniFi Controller. In my searching for that module, the UniFi Controller API documentation, or UniFi automation options in general, I’d come to find a general lack of information and solutions. So this is where I got my hands dirty and started building that very set of Ansible modules.

DIY Development

There’s a general lack of information out there around the UniFi Controller API, but also as far as for how to make Ansible modules. Luckily, since Ansible is open-source, I could browse the software repository on GitHub and browse some of the sources for the modules in the official distribution and base mine off of some of those better-built modules. Another benefit of open-source software, my code was made better by good code already out there, and now it’s not (as) bad! I was also able to adapt the API calls and reference them off of the compiled work of another person because they published their open-source code as well!

This Ansible module removes two layers from my previous Rube G-like voice activated network core, well almost that is.  In order to truly introduce the Ubiquiti UniFi lineup into the world of Ansible Automation for Networking, you need to be able to perform actions.  This module simply reports information from the controller, it does not take any actions or set any configurations.  For that, there is the unifi_controller module, which will be released soon as open-source as well.  I need to clean up a few late-night wine-fueled code comments and finish a few more functions before releasing that one to the world!

This wasn’t the first thing that I, or Fierce Software™, has open-sourced but because of our position in the Ansible community, I wanted to make sure it was as complete as possible and as polished as a new pair of shoes. This was a fun project, and I’m happy with how easy it really was to develop a custom Ansible module in Python.  Of course, it could be better still, and I hope maybe even one of you helps with that and contributes back to the source!  I guarantee there are people out there (probably you) with better Python skills than myself, and maybe some more UniFi gear than me, so help me, help you, help us all!

Resources

In the spirit of collaboration, here are a few resources (and due credits) that can save future developers some time…

  • Custom Ansible Module GitHub Example – Great reource that helped me get my head around what Ansible required of a simple module
  • UniFi API Browser – A PHP library to browse the UniFi API. Also has another library that acts as a client, this is what I based this off of and basically ported the PHP library into Python.
  • Python Requests QuickStart – There of course, were many docs, quickstarts, and tutorials that I referenced but this was by far the most important and the only thing that kept me along.

 

Get a copy on our GitHub repo: unifi_controller_facts – UniFi Controller Facts Ansible Module!

Red Hat IdM Pt I: Identity, Auth, and Policies! Oh My!

Welcome to the first in a 3-part series over Red Hat’s Identity Management product, or otherwise referred to as “IdM”.  In this post we’ll be going over the generalities of Red Hat IdM, how to install and configure it, building an IdM lab to use later, and next steps.  Part 2 will be over “Integration with Windows Active Directory (AD)” and part 3 will be regarding “Extending Red Hat IdM with SSO.”  There will be follow up Ansible playbooks that will help with a IdM deployment and to seed the services for lab purposes.

RHEL 7 IdM Guide

RHEL 7 IdM Guide, one of the best resources for Red Hat Identity Management deployments

General

Red Hat Identity Management is an enterprise-grade identity, policy, and authentication platform application stack.  That actually brings me to the upstream project called FreeIPA.  They’re both a culmination of multiple technologies to support all the underlying services for the flexibility, integration, and security required to deliver a unified solution.  The value delivered is centered in a centralized identity and authentication store similar to Windows AD, which can also be integrated with Windows AD, and many other end-points such as your network devices and web applications.

Why

In many Windows environment deployments a centralized authentication service provided by Active Directory is common place and almost inherent.  Most people don’t even think about it, they just “log into their computer” with their “username and password.”  On the other side of the fence I still to this day see many *nix environments that don’t have the same capabilities and much less extend them out to other networked devices such as routers and switches.  Even worse are the environments that handle shared users and password updates through a spreadsheet!

Which brings me to the next point…why even share credentials?  There’s been a solution and it’s one word: sudo.  Which you can extend through the network via IdM (the LDAP part).  Equifax was subject to issues with shared passwords and default credentials and now more or less everyone in America got Equifux’d.  How accurate do you imagine their “auditing” was?  How stringent are their policies?

Ever manage more than 10 systems and find yourself with difficulties in creating, culling, and updating credentials in what are essentially disparate systems?  I have an “algorithm” to my password schemes for some development systems in my homelab and even then it’s difficult to remember what my credentials are.  Before you ask or call me an admitted hypocrite my “production” and “staging” systems are all attached to IdM/AD, ha!

With each passing day security base lines are bolstered and raised, standards are improved, and access requirements made more dynamic.  Respond proactively with a platform that can boast FIPS certified identity, access with Smart Cards such as CACs, and role based authentication control extending deeper into your network than before with an easy to manage interface.

What

Red Hat IdM is included in any version of Red Hat Enterprise Linux since 6.2.  The related project is FreeIPA and they are both very similar.  Both provide usage of DNS, NTP, 389 Directory, Kerberos, LDAP, and many other technologies as a whole but can also be very flexible in extensions and modifications.  You can spin up a VM and deploy it right now, but if you’re planning on doing so in any production environment there are a few considerations to be made such as integration with other NTP peers on the same stratum, DNS forwarding, service replicas, and the list goes on.  If you’re not comfortable with some of these technologies and how they play a larger part with other nodes and services in your enterprise, simply reach out to your Red Hat Partner for assistance and they’ll be happy to engage a Solution Architect or engage consulting services.

Outside of that, a few key features and functions provided by Red Hat IdM that are advantagous in a production environment are…

  • Operating as a Certificate Authority to provide identity to nodes, services, and users
  • Centrally managed users, groups, shared mounts, SSH keys, and additional points of integration
  • Web GUI (yes!) and command line tools (excellent!)
  • Smart Card integration with the OpenSC driver
  • Cached log-ins.  Think of when you take your work laptop off the dock, and how you can still unlock it on the bus home even though you’re not communicating with the internal Active Directory server
  • Host, service, and role based authentication and policies

Where

For the purpose of this article, we’ll assume you have either…

  1. Bought RHEL from the Red Hat Webstore
  2. Bought RHEL from your Red Hat Partner
  3. Have a Red Hat Developer Subscription

Either works perfectly fine as long as you have a RHEL machine to work with be that a physical server or a virtual machine.  Now, you *could* deploy this on a RHEL VM in a public cloud service such as AWS and use it with an internal network.  However, the case with that would be a more detailed process involving a site-to-site VPN tunnel to connect networks and offer services securely so we’ll skip that for today.  Let’s just go with the notion that you have signed up for the Red Hat Developer Subscription and are now installing RHEL 7.5 into a couple VMs in VirtualBox or VMWare Workstation…

In my specific use case and what I’ll be doing for this lab is I have a Dell R210ii setup with Proxmox as a hypervisor, pfSense providing my routing and forward DNS services, and two RHEL 7.5 VMs, all on that same host with the RHEL VMs obtaining IPs from the pfSense router.

How

The process of getting the basics up and running is pretty simple.  There’s a stack to install on the IdM server(s), and there’s a small application to install on the clients.  Then of course the configuration of the server components, and the simple binding of the client to the server.  Now, you could also create replica servers, segregate services into different systems and so on but that’s a bit outside the scope of this specific article and we’ll get into some of that soon enough.

Get this show on the road

Alrighty, let’s start building this IdM lab out.

Architecture

Ok so let’s start with what we need to keep in mind from an architecture standpoint…

  • First and foremost, DNS.  You need a FQDN, and for the purposes of this series (most deployments) a subdomain on that FQDN.  For this purpose, I’ve used the kemo.lab domain and the subdomain idm.kemo.lab.  The DNS and domain scheme is important because if you set the domain realm to the root of your TLD (kemo.lab) then you’ll never be able to create cross-forest trusts.  Now keep in mind that these don’t need to be publicly set, they can be provisioned with an internal DNS server before having external requests forwarded out.
  • Next, DNS.  Yes, really, again.  Something to make mention of is the delegation of DNS services, in that having your IdM infrastructure on a subdomain (idm.kemo.lab) makes it easier to provision SRV records, and forward the rest of the requests up your DNS chain.
  • Systems need to be on the same logical, routed network.  You can connect different networks in different geographies together of course, but that involves more network engineering.  For this example, let’s assume you have two VMs running on your computer behind a NAT, VM1 (server) is 172.16.1.100 and VM2 (client) is 172.16.1.101.
  • We’ll be setting up a Certificate Authority (CA), which means we should think about our Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) hierarchy.  For this purpose, let’s just setup a root CA called “My Awesome CA.”

Outside of that, there are no real architecture considerations to make mention of for the purpose of this article series.  In a real production environment you’d want to set up replica trusts, additional DNS services, IPv6, etc.  I suggest following the Red Hat Identity Management Installation Guide as well for additional information.

To review, I’ll be deploying this lab in VirtualBox on my Galago Pro.  There are 4 VMs total:

  1. pfSense Router VM – This provides the routed network, has a NAT interface for the “WAN” and another network internal interface named “idmlab” for the “LAN” providing out to the lab
  2. RHEL 7.5 VM – IdM Server
  3. RHEL 7.5 VM – IdM Client
  4. Desktop VM – OS of your choice, just need a browser to access the GUI of your pfSense router and IdM Server Web UI.

In the future we’ll be expanding this environment out with a replica, Windows Active Directory environment, and more.  See the diagram below for an example of this lab.

Red Hat IdM Lab 1 - VirtualBox

A lab diagram for the initial IdM environment, running on Virtualbox

Run

Because we want to keep this as action packed, informative, yet as succinct as possible here’s a few commands to run…

IdM Server

Set firewall

# systemctl start firewalld.service
# systemctl enable firewalld.service
# firewall-cmd --permanent --add-service={freeipa-ldap,freeipa-ldaps,dns,ntp,https}
# firewall-cmd --reload

Install packages

# yum install ipa-server ipa-server-dns

Run the installation command

# ipa-server-install

Now the next few prompts will be dependent on your environment so reference the Installation Guide and answer accordingly.  In this case, we’ll be using the integrated DNS services, on the ipa.idm.lab realm/domain, and forwarding to our router’s DNS.  Next, test the implimentation by authenticating to the Kerberos realm with…

# kinit admin

If everything checks out then we can proceed to configuring the client(s)!

Client(s)

Of course you can connect many different kinds of clients to the setup right now, be those Linux hosts, network devices, etc.  For right now, let’s focus on our other RHEL VM.  Log into the machine as a privileged user, and run the following commands, the first of which will install the client software needed and the second will start the binding and configuration process…

# yum install ipa-client
# ipa-client-install

Just like the server configuration, there are some prompts and questions to answer (domain, realm, hostname, etc) and you’ll shortly be connected to the IdM Server! There are many client configuration options so be sure to browse the Install Guide for the client section as well.  After binding the client, do a test against the kerberos realm…

# kinit admin

Wait, we’re now connected to the IdM server but there are no users to authenticate with! (aside from the admin user)  Let’s navigate back to the IdM server with our web browser and access the GUI from there.  Simply load the hostname/IP address of the IdM server in your browser.

Red Hat IdM Login

If you see this page then you’re more than likely successful in deploying an IdM server!

Next Steps

Now that we have the IdM Server setup and a client bound and configured there’s plenty we can do next.  From the web panel you can gleam some of the functionality offered by Red Hat Identity Management.  I won’t go into the process of adding users, groups, and so on for basic identity management since that’s pretty basic and easy to do.  We’re also reaching the end of this article, but before I wrap up I do want to make mention of a few features…

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There are plenty of other tasks IdM can perform such as authentication with Smart Cards, automount shared resources, extend the functionality with the included API, and more.  For now, we have the basic constructs of an Red Hat Identity Management environment deployed.  We’ll come back in the next article of this series with some steps on how to expand your IdM environment with replicas and AD trusts.  If you have any feedback or questions we’d love to hear from you in the comments, or if you’re interested in learning more about Red Hat Identity Management we’d be more than happy to talk with you.

15th Annual Naval IT Day – Enhancing Cyber and IW Capabilities to Support Integrated Maritime Warfighting

Fierce Software™ is proud to be a Platinum Sponsor with Red Hat for the 15th Annual Naval IT Day on May 12th.

Hosted by AFCEA NOVA, the Naval IT Day’s program theme this year is: Enhancing Cyber and IW Capabilities to Support Integrated Maritime Warfighting. Focused on information technology business with the US maritime agencies, including the Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard, the Naval IT Day draws attendance by by providing an ethical forum to engage directly with senior technology and acquisition leaders. Invited senior decision makers from organizations inside and outside the Beltway include the:

  • Chief of Naval Operations and senior staff
  • Commandant of the Marine Corps and senior staff
  • Department of Navys Chief Information Officer
  • Navy and Marine Corps Systems Acquisition Commands
  • Program Executive Officers and Major Program Managers
  • Navy Cyber Command
  • Related IT organizations such as DISA and DoD CIO senior staff

 

Major technology initiatives discussed will include:

  • Cyber Security and Resiliency
  • Cloud
  • Mobility
  • Assured C2
  • Autonomous Operations
  • Electronic Warfare

Event Location:

Sheraton Tysons Hotel
8661 Leesburg Pike
Vienna, VA 22182

For more information on the event, speakers, agenda and more please visit the AFCEA NOVA site.

 

AFCEANOVA-Logo-ITDay-Naval-400

Getting started with Ansible Tower playbooks Webinar

]Red Hat Ansible Tower is a powerful, agent-less tool for configuration management, orchestration, and deployment. Ansible Tower uses its own domain-specific language to describe system configuration or deployment. Configurations and deployment steps are declared and stored in a format known as a playbook.

Join this webinar to learn key concepts about Ansible Tower playbooks, including:

  • An introduction to fundamental Ansible Tower concepts and terms
  • The components of a playbook such as hosts, users, modules, tasks, and plays
  • How playbooks can be used to automate system configuration and orchestrate deployment

Session 1:
Date: Thursday, April 28, 2016
Time: 9:00AM ET / 6:00AM PT
Duration: 60 minutes

Session 2:

Date: Thursday, April 28, 2016
Time: 2:00PM ET / 11:00AM PT

Duration: 60 minutes Red Hat Ansible Tower is a powerful, agent-less tool for configuration management, orchestration, and deployment. Ansible Tower uses its own domain-specific language to describe system configuration or deployment. Configurations and deployment steps are declared and stored in a format known as a playbook.

Link to Register

Fierce Software™ Named Rising Star Partner of the Year by Red Hat, Recognized for Outstanding Channel Contributions

Fierce Software™, a value-added reseller and solutions provider, is proud to announce it has been named Rising Star Partner of the Year by Red Hat, the world’s leading provider of open source solutions. This award is part of the annual Red Hat North America Partner Awards, which were announced during the 2016 Red Hat North America Partner Conference in New Orleans.

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Fierce Software™ was honored for its dedication to providing innovative open source solutions to customers in the public sector. Specifically, Fierce Software™ was recognized for enabling exceptional growth over the past year through collaboration with Red Hat. Red Hat’s 2015 North America Partner Awards honor both commercial and public sector partners for their dedication to successfully delivering innovative open source solutions to customers. Honorees were recognized for outstanding performance in 2015 across several categories, including Cloud Partner of the Year; Industry Solution Partner of the Year; Distributor of the Year; High Volume Partner of the Year; Innovation Partner of the Year; Middleware Solutions Provider Partner of the Year; Middleware Global Systems Integrator of the Year; Partner of the Year; Canadian Partner of the Year; Rising Star Partner of the Year; Catalyst Partner of the Year; and System Integrator Partner of the Year.

Fierce Software™ is a valued channel partner to Red Hat, and we are pleased to honor them with this welldeserved award, said Mark Enzweiler, senior vice president, Global Channel Sales and Alliances, Red Hat. We look forward to our continued relationship with Fierce Software™ and helping them provide the best in open source solutions to their customers.

Download Press Release Here ->>

Link to Press Release Here ->>

Fierce Software™ Announced as Newest Red Hat Public Sector Specialized (PSS) Partner

Today Fierce Software™, a value-added reseller and solutions provider,
was announced as the newest Public Sector Specialist in the Red Hat Channel. Fierce Software™ joins a small
group of current partners able to call themselves Red Hat’s Public Sector Specialists.

Fierce Software™ has built its business around open source solutions and technologies. Recognizing the value of
Open solutions and growing trends in both the Public and Private sectors, Fierce Software™ has built
relationships with many open source companies over the years including Ansible, an IT automation company
acquired by Red Hat in October. Acquisitions like this, in addition to organic growth, add to the success of Red
Hat’s ever growing product lines including Linux Platform, JBoss Middleware, Virtualization, Cloud
Computing, Storage, and Mobile.

Being a Red Hat Public Sector specialist enables Fierce Software™ to better serve its partners in Government
around the value of open source adoption and the power of open source communities to accelerate realizing
their mission goals. Combing 30+ years of executive experience in selling to the Government with the backing
of major manufacturer such as Red Hat, positions Fierce Software™ to better serve its customers.

Fierce Software™, www.fiercesw.com, is a small, women-owned value added reseller (VAR) and trusted IT
solutions provider focused on providing customers with products and technologies that help organizations to
reach their goals more effectively at a lower cost. Fierce Software™ represents vendors that drive innovation
forward, while driving costs down.

Download Press Release Here ->>

Link to Press Release Here ->>