Cloud Automation DevOps vRealize Code Stream

vRealize Code Stream – The Importance of Artifact Management in Release Automation

by Daniel Jonathan Valik

One of the most critical aspects of being able to release software faster and more efficiently is to make sure everyone in theArtifact Management release delivery process is using the same software binaries.  All the improvements in development and testing will be wasted if different groups are using different binary versions from different repositories when they provision or deploy an application.  Not only do you need to coordinate these binary artifacts across multiple groups, but you also need to coordinate the different components across the multiple versions of an application that may be active at any point in time.   As release windows continue to shrink keeping track of these software artifacts can become a daunting task.

Artifact Management – Assure the right artifact versions for each release

vRealize™ Code Stream™ supports the modeling and resolution of artifacts so that the right artifact versions are automatically retrieved when deploying a particular build version of an application. This means organizations can easily control, store and manage binary artifacts throughout the software release cycle, and ensure that the right artifact version is deployed every time.

How Code Stream’s Artifact Management Works

In our last Code Stream blog post we talked about Code Streams multi-vendor integration frameworkOne of the key components in Code Stream’s integration framework is that Code Stream can work with multiple artifact management or better to say repository managers like JFrogs Artifactory. Artifactory is a distributed repository and repository management system that can store binary source code artifacts as well as provide remote access to other repositories.  When used as part of Code Stream’s pipeline automation, the combined solution assures consistency as code flows through the different groups from development to production.    Code Stream allows release managers to be certain that each group is getting the latest binaries for each stage in the application delivery process from development through production.

About JFrog Artifactory Repository Manager

Artifactory is a distributed repository management system that can store binary source code artifacts as well as provide access to remote repositories.  Artifactory delivers a single repository that does not require artifacts to be replicated for each group or user that needs access to these files.  Remote copies are just metadata and pointers to the original file stored in the Artifactory repository.  In addition to providing a repository for binary artifacts, Artifactory acts as a repository manager of other multi-vendor  repositories from vendors like  Nexus, Yum, NuGet, etc.  This interoperability allows Code Stream can leverage your existing binary repositories protecting your investment in prior technology decisions.

Artifactory allows users to add metadata tags on binaries and define gating polices rules for an environment. Metadata tags can be used to add status or other information to a binary artifact.  For example the binaries for a specific release of an application can be labeled with appropriate test status: “test-approved”. Gating rules can be used to stop any code without the exact metadata tags from being used at different stages in the release pipeline.  This capability enables better governance and control over which binaries can be used throughout your release process.

Security policies control access to your artifacts as well as specify where they can be deployed.  Monitoring thresholds alert administrators to low level of disk resources and allow scheduled maintenance of old builds and unused artifacts.  Artifactory can also be configured in a HA configuration assuring that critical resources are always available.

Learn More

Here are some additional resources to help you learn more about vRealize Code Stream and its Artifact Management capabilities.

Read current and stay tuned for upcoming Code Stream blog posts


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