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2014

The past 10 weeks, I've been reading about APIs, Test Automation, Service Virtualization and everything DevOps. If asked to define any of these terms prior to this time, I would not have been able to give you an answer; now, I eat, sleep, and breathe Application Delivery, and I monitor this Community page like a hawk. I’m not an engineer or developer, and I’m not a prospective buyer of CA Technologies software solutions-- I’m an intern. My name is Jessica Pennington, and I’m a summer intern at CA Technologies.

 

When I began my time at CA, I wasn’t sure what my role would be. I was told that I had the power to decide what direction my summer would take; my only direction was that I would work towards developing awareness of the CA Application Delivery products and the people who create them. After some preliminary discovery work, I made the choice to focus my attention on the recently launched, Jive-supported, CA Communities. More specifically, I would work on having blogs regularly published on the CA LISA Application Delivery page.


Currently, there are 9 different blogs published in this community through my initiative. The response has been stellar, and I feel that the bloggers who have written are proud of their work. The journey to this point has not been easy. I needed to learn about the DevOps space that the CA products are part of, and discover what type of content existed. With the help of my tech savvy colleagues, that was actually quite simple. The difficulties laid elsewhere.

 

Many of the bloggers were blogging for the first time, and most of them occupied roles that did not require much writing. I created guiding documents, and was speedy in making sure I answered all of their questions and assuaged their concerns. The Communities platform was (and still is) new, so my bloggers were learning the ins and outs while I was doing the same. Trying to stay one step ahead was a trial and error process. However, I was continually impressed by each writers’ talent and enthusiasm.


Another issue was making sure that the posts received proper exposure. With some advice from the very friendly and helpful social media and PR teams, I was able to establish and execute a protocol for social media promotion. The amount of unique visitors to the Communities site due to the blogs is growing, and the blogs are currently the most viewed form of content on the CA LISA Application Delivery Community.

 

I’m so proud of everything that has been created this summer, and thankful to have been able to play a role in the growth of such a large and influential technology community. Unfortunately, I have to return to college (I’m a rising junior at the University of Pennsylvania ), so my time at CA is at a close. I hope that the blogs continue, and that everyone on the community continues to innovate and participate in this amazing area. 

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Getting to Know Arif Muhammad

 

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Title: Director Product Management – Application Delivery

 

Based out of: Islandia, NY

 

Former Job: Director Product Management – Cloud and Automation Solutions

 

What do you enjoy about your work: Coming up with new ways of solving old problems

 

About your family:  My life – I am married to Nadia for 15 years and have two crazy but amazing kids, Asad who is 11 & Mahad who just turned 3. You can see all of us in the picture wearing traditional dresses, celebrating Eid (Religious Holiday) few weeks back.

 

Favorite 3 movies of all time:  Matrix, Speed, The Social Network

 

Favorite book:  Unfortunately all the screen time keeps me away from books…….

 

Favorite hobbies: My kids and wife will say I have no life outside of computer and phone, which is unfortunately right so don’t get much time for any other hobby. Sometime I do biking and play cricket with my son.

 

Interesting fact about yourself:   I loved technology since childhood. Used to master all the functions of every complicated calculator my father used to have. When I was in 8th grade my dad got a really nice casio databank pocket book, which was kind of over his head (because of complexities). I started playing around with it and eventually created PACMAN in it by printing – and > < signs!. Only after getting to my 1st programming class I discovered that what I learned with that pocket book on my own was actually BASIC language. Yeah, Yeah I have been a geek….all my life.

In my previous blog I discussed how API based federated design coupled with Service Visualization can help achieve First day test automation. In this blog I will go little further on automated testing of APIs and enabling end to end business process validation.

 

As you are witnessing today’s enterprise applications are increasingly being built using internal and external APIs. In many cases behind those APIs there can be several interconnected applications, services and databases. Although the end user is just interacting with the presentation layer, a simple end user click can generates a chain reaction of calls to different services encompassing web services, EJBs, legacy apps and databases. While there are many tools out there which will allow the tester to call each of the API individually, the end to end validation of the business process will require orchestration not only across API calls but across different technologies.

 

Business Process Testing is not only testing end to end processes and the complex systems that make up a business process — it requires collaboration between the system designers and implementers. Business analysts who understand the flow of information have the ability to augment and tie Test Cases together gaining end to end testing of a process. Basically Business Process Testing redefines the need for a strong collaborative testing platform.

 

CA Application Test provides a rich feature set to allow collaboration of testing assets and data between developers and analysts along with a powerful framework to Invoke and Verify requests across different services and technologies (as shown in the figure).

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These Invoke and Verify steps can be further stitched together to mimic full business process using a visual workflow style test designer. As the requests are being placed verification of those requests can be done using the powerful assertion framework. Since  CA Application Test support's verity of protocols, applications, technologies and interfaces it basically becomes your de-facto client to all underlying components, taking you out of the business of coding, creating and testing throwaway clients. While you are building a test case in CA Application Test, you can simulate a browser dialogue and verify calls against a web service or database, then jump right into staging that test, then jump back and modify your test case while your test is being staged without recompiling or modifying a single script.

When you are creating an automated end to end test you are also trying to validating how the system under test (SUT) will behave with different data. For successful test automation maintaining right set of data used to invoke and verify the API/interface calls is very important. CA Application Test also provides a framework to capture, manage and pass the data to automated tests. Powered by highly scalable architecture CA Application Test's test staging and invocation framework allows on demand as well as scheduled execution of test cases for regression testing as well performance and load testing.

 

Are your teams utilizing CA Application to its full potential?  Please share your experiences on validating end-to-end process using CA Application Test!

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DevOps:  Problem or Dilemma?

Posted by decro03 Employee Aug 11, 2014

The definition of a dilemma on dictionary.com is “a situation requiring a choice between equally undesirable alternatives.” Essentially, a situation where compromises need to be made to move forward, not quite as successfully as both sides would like.  The definition of a problem is “an identifiable challenge to which an equally desirable solution can be derived”. Until recently, the competing priorities between Development and Operations teams have been classified as a dilemma.  Let’s dig in:


I spend a lot of my time educating organizations on DevOps and its significance. This topic has been written about, studied and re-written about thousands, if not millions, of times. If there is so much available content, why is it that many organizations still see it as being new? Is this just another industry buzz word for something we have been doing since the beginning of time?  Are Fortune 1000 companies really doing this? Is this only applicable for strictly online companies like Facebook and Etsy? I’m here to tell you it’s real, and Fortune 100, 500 and 1,000 companies are using it. Why? Why all of a sudden is the infusion between Development and Operations so important? 

Both Development and Operations teams have invested significant dollars in technologies and strategies to make themselves more efficient. On the Development side, we have things like Agile Development, Test Automation and Service-Oriented Architectures. On the Operations side, there are tools such as Automated build processes, Configuration Management and Auto Server Provisioning. Despite these capabilities, organizations are not moving forward. Often, individual teams work more quickly, yet the time to market remains the same. The culprit? Competing priorities and a lack of trust.


Development’s main goal is to churn out as many business requirements as quickly as possible to stay ahead of competition. Operations main goal is to keep a stable Production environment. As applications have become more and more complex, we have seen the inverse with quality. Development is pressed to move faster, QA cycles are riddled with defects and compressed schedules. Result? Operations bears the brunt of these problems, as they are typically graded on their ability to keep a stable operating environment. New and updated applications are deployed to production, and they fail. Operations typically deploys these changes over long weekends, so getting the right folks involved quickly is not only a major challenge, it also costs them time on their weekends. So the calluses that the Operations teams have built up over the years have taught them that deploying changes into production is bad, hence they challenge every change going to production.

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  Therein lies a conundrum: The business wants more functionality faster and a stable production environment. Yet the reality is, more functionality in the timelines the business wants often impacts the stability of the production environment. Dilemma or problem? The emergence of DevOps strategies allows us to classify this as a problem—one that can be resolved without compromising the objectives of Developments or Operation. In my next blog, I will discuss how to bring Development and Operations together to solve this problem.

Getting to know Udhayakumar Sankaran

 

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Job Title: SOA Test Consultant, Tata Consultancy Services

 

Based out of: Chennai, India

 

Former Job: Senior SOA Test Analyst, Wipro Technologies

 

What do you enjoy about your work: Challenging problem statement and providing solutions for the same.

 

About your family: I am still roaming as happy bachelor. Have 2 elder sisters got married and settled in my same town. My Dad is retired from government service as Head Master and Mom is a home maker.

 

Favorite 3 movies of all time: Shawshank Redemption, Escape from Alcatraz, Escape to Victory, Inception and list continues...

 

Favorite book: Hmmm I don't read novels it might be since I don't have this habit from childhood or I don't have time to do. If I need to tell some favorite books it should be Engineering books - Digital Communications, VLSI Design, Technology Transfer and so on..

 

Favorite hobbies: Watching Movies, Cooking, Chatting with friends, Reading through blogs.

 

Interesting fact about yourself: I did my engineering in Electronics and Communications and landed into software industry. Still I wanted to have a backup plan if software Industry doesn't suits me at my Mid & Old age, So I did MTech in VLSI and MBA in Technology Management while working. My backup plan doesn't stops here... :-) I  like roaming to different countries, their cuisines and culture. I keep talking to people and try to read their minds and know how people think and react in different situations. I strongly believe in the phrase: 'Changing the Face' can change nothing. But 'Facing the Change' can change everything.

 

Attached is the photo taken during my trip to Grampians National Park, Melbourne