In an effort to strengthen its DevOps portfolio, IBM on Monday announced new automated cloud analytics and application-monitoring solutions, as well as virtualized mobile testing tools at its Innovate 2013 summit in Orlando.
All available later this month, IBM’s new cloud offerings include the SmartCloud Analytics’ Log Analysis tool, the SmartCloud Monitoring Application Insight tool, and expanded SmartCloud Application Services. These new mobile offerings include a new version of Rational Test Workbench, plus a free trial of IBM Worklight, a build and deployment platform for mobile technology.
Log Analysis analyzes terabytes of data in IT asset logs to give developers insight into their applications’ performance. “Log Analysis adds more capabilities to understand what’s happening as people use the IBM SmartCloud for continuous delivery,” said Eric Naiburg, program director at Rational ALM. “The need to deliver more continuously is becoming more prevalent. Developers are trying to be more agile, trying to deliver software with agility, but then they hit this wall. This is where DevOps really starts to come in. And when I say delivering continuously, it doesn’t always mean to production; it may be to development or to test.”
Today, developers are testing as they’re developing, Naiburg said. He said it is part of the agile development process and is driven by DevOps. “As they get through their sprints and try to move forward, they’re trying to bring all of the pieces together and validate that they work,” he said. “Cloud and mobile are driving the need for that because, as an external customer, if you can’t supply me with what I need when I need it, I’m going to find someone else who can—whether it’s mobile banking or insurance or what have you.”
The new Application Insight tool helps developers monitor the performance and availability of applications hosted on a cloud in real time. IBM enhanced its SmartCloud Application Services to not only support the PHP language, but to also let developers deploy and manage applications written in PHP using Zend Server 6. “As we continue to expand the support for our SmartCloud environment, it’s critical we support the modern languages,” Naiburg said. “A lot of applications are being written in PHP now.”
Part of IBM’s MobileFirst strategy, the new version of Rational Test Workbench now supports the Android and iOS mobile platforms. It is made up of four components: functional testing, performance testing, integration testing and service virtualization. Naiburg said it helps developers continually run and update their tests, no matter what kind of testing they’re doing. The service virtualization component of Rational Test Workbench lets developers run their tests even if all of the application’s components aren’t ready. Naiburg said it does so by virtualizing or simulating the components that aren’t ready.
“You don’t have to wait until the full application is built and deployed to test it,” he said. “You can start testing now before you have all of the pieces together because you’re now able to simulate or virtualize the pieces that aren’t ready yet. So you virtualize that integration as if it was there and still test the rest of the application.”
IBM also announced the expansion of its developerWorks network to include websites focused on mobile, cloud, Big Data and WebSphere application development. IBM has also created developerWorks Labs, which gives developers sneak peeks at emerging technologies, products, and open standards for cloud and mobile development.