The Valiantys-Cycloid Story
Long-term DevOps thinking,
short-term practical goals
Valiantys is an Atlassian-focused global consultancy and Atlassian systems platinum partner with extensive, long-running, and deep experience. Their subsidiary, Valiantys Managed Services, offers a cloud service to host Atlassian-specific applications and managed application services.
A complex existing ecosystem
As managed services providers, you could argue that Valiantys’ circumstances were even more complex than usual. As a partner to some of the world's largest companies and managing a tools ecosystem including but not limited to:
- Jira software - project management
- Jira service desk - ticket management
- Confluence - document management
- Bamboo - CI/CD
- Bitbucket - hosting and code management
...Valiantys has all the usual concerns of a large, successful company - and then some. Abraham Gaougaou, head of managed services, explains that despite the complexity of their business, Valiantys had not always employed the common methods available to “manage the unmanageable” - and that was becoming increasingly problematic.
Manual deployment of new projects took too long
No infra-as-code, config management, or pipeline
No guiding framework to ensure global efficiency and governance
An ecosystem ready to scale intelligently
Valiantys realized that if they were to continue to grow and thrive, they would need to make changes to enable the industrialization of their processes and automation to support their clients in the most efficient, intelligent way possible. This would require simplifying and centralizing systems and ensuring deployments were as easy as possible.
Best practice takes on urgent importance
To guarantee high standards for increasing client numbers and at scale, Valiantys realized that they would need a way of encouraging, guiding, and ensuring best practice across all their tools, including Ansible, Concourse, and Vault. Part of this would mean adopting infrastructure-as-code for all their dealings with Terraform.
Reproducibility would bring benefits for all
Valiantys understood that to make their processes streamlined and efficient, they would need to automate and ensure reproducibility wherever possible. Reproducibility would make things more efficient internally as well as for their clients. If clients could roll out projects more quickly, there would be knock-on benefits for all.
Old-fashioned, manual processes didn't scale well
A large and complex open-source and proprietary tools system
A desire to move simultaneously to best practice, IaC, and the cloud
Industrialization and scale
Valiantys successfully rolled out two initiatives at the same time. Firstly, they industrialized and scaled, which they achieved by leveraging Cycloid to enable automation and reproducibility throughout the pipeline. Cycloid also provided guide rails for a successful move to AWS and Flexible Engine and implementation of best practices and infra-as-code, ensuring that development done right could be automatically reproduced time and time again.
Increased customer flexibility
To achieve their goal of helping clients help themselves, Valiantys decided to create a stack for all projects, no matter the client. This unique stack comes already configured and allows Valiantys to install any application they decide on one or several servers. Valiantys now has the same generic infra-as-code (stack plus pipeline) for all clients, allowing stacks to be rolled out much faster and more reliably.
With the help of Cycloid, deployments at Valiantys are now made simply and intuitively. Cycloid is interoperable with its existing setup and open source tools work well in the cloud-agnostic platform. All these improvements add up to deployments that take a few hours, rather than a few days.
Industrialization and automation, supported by best practices
Clients more efficient thanks to reproducible stacks
Many small improvements lead to much better deployment speed