During AzureCon 2015 Microsoft Azure CTO Mark Russinovich made a clear statement when it comes to automation:
For those of you that don’t know what it refers to here is the Urban Dictionary’s Top Definition for “The new black“:
“Since black is always in style in the fashion industry, saying something is “the new black” means that it is the hottest new thing. This phrase can be used to call out the “coolness” of anything, it’s not just limited to the fashion world.”
I almost fully agree with this definition except for the “new thing” part. IT automation is not new at all but what makes it “the hottest new thing” are the current adoption rate and increase in maturity of automation tools. Furthermore I feel fashion implies that it may go out of style one day, which will most definitely not be the case.
It seems all vendors are paying attention to providing customers with the ability to manage their products more effectively and through automation. It is all about delivering standard services, as-a-service through automation. It is what makes the cloud work.
“Automation should be at the heart of every service delivery model. Standardize services and it’s delivery steps, automate these steps and provide IT resources as-a-service through a self-service customer portal. Automation is what makes the cloud work.”
Microsoft Azure Automation provides a way for users to automate the manual, long-running, error-prone, and frequently repeated tasks that are commonly performed in a cloud environment. You can create, monitor, manage, and deploy resources in your Azure environment using runbooks, which are based on Windows PowerShell workflows.
To get started check out some Azure Automation Automation videos to get an idea of what you could do with it. The videos shows the use of PowerShell workflows in Azure Automation which is all about writing code and does not support Native PowerShell. Luckily for us all Microsoft has announced the support for PowerShell in Azure Automation (Announcing PowerShell script support Azure Automation).
This is available only through the new Azure Portal (currently Azure preview portal) which also provides capabilities for graphical runbook authoring (like System Center Orchestrator). More information can be found at: Graphical authoring in Azure Automation. So as you can see many new things around automation, making it the coolest kid in town.
This is an old post that was originally posted on it-automators.nl (which no longer exists) and has been backdated to reflect the date it was originally posted.