Enterprise Ready Habitat Plans Now Available

Today at ChefConf 2017 we are excited to launch a new program for enterprise content around Habitat and announce a first set of “enterprise ready” Habitat plans. The plans are all open source and serve as best practice references to guide you as you write plans for your own applications. For example, the PostgreSQL Habitat plan demonstrates how a highly-available stateful application can be deployed with replication and failover. The WordPress Habitat plan shows you how to deploy Nginx as a proxy in front to provide load-balancing.

Enterprise Ready Habitat Plans

What does it mean to be “enterprise ready”? Generally speaking, these plans:

  • Support the way software is deployed in the enterprise. For instance, you can easily deploy in clustered and high-availability topologies.
  • Come with out-of-the-box support for common enterprise patterns such as backup/restore. For instance, we integrate tools such as Wal-E and Stark & Wayne’s Shield product into the PostgreSQL and Redis plans for easy backup and restore.
  • Hide the complexity. These plans get you up and running quickly through clear documentation, common patterns, standard practices, and examples of how to integrate them with your own Habitat plans to create full-stack applications. (The WordPress and Drupal plans are both great multi-tier application examples.)

Recognizing Barriers to Using  Habitat

Habitat enables you to deploy your application to any platform coupled with the automation you’ll need to manage it. Whether you’re packaging a new application in Habitat or moving an existing application into Habitat as part of a replatforming effort, you’ll have dependencies on third-party software products such as databases, messaging systems, application servers, analytics pipelines, and monitoring systems.

Packaging and running software in enterprise scenarios also has a myriad of specific requirements and considerations. A few things to think about (from a very long list) include clustering, high-availability, secure deployment, integrated backup, complete documentation and runbooks.

Too often, someone has written the Habitat plan for the application itself but not thought about plans for everything else you need. So a natural barrier to moving your application quickly into Habitat is the broad set of plans that probably need to be written. At Chef we’ve recognized these barriers, and wanted to provide a robust set of plans to reduce the friction of getting started with Habitat.

Open Source Collaboration

The Chef open source community has been collaborating on this sort of content for many years in the form of cookbooks. We at Chef are proud of this Chef ecosystem and the quality of the contributions. Knowing we had such great material at hand, we began our new program by reviewing the 100 most popular cookbooks on our community portal, Chef Supermarket, and identifying which of them to translate into Habitat plans.

We then worked with four of our partners, Container Solutions, Endocode, Fast Robot and Stark & Wayne, to produce the plans. Together, we selected applications that took advantage of their deep domain expertise and that they commonly see in their consulting engagements. We built out the plans as full stacks to show how you can take all the parts of your application and package it with Habitat. Our initial offerings cover five areas:

  • Big Data – Cassandra, Spark, Storm, Kafka, Zookeeper, CrateDB
  • Monitoring – Prometheus, Grafana
  • Middleware – Websphere, Mulesoft, Varnish, RabbitMQ, Consul
  • Databases – PostgreSQL, MySQL, Redis, Shield
  • Developer and Content Tools – Jenkins, Drupal, WordPress

All the plans are now available in the Habitat core-plans github repository for you to look at, download and use.

Learn More at ChefConf

Drop by the Habitat zone at ChefConf on Tuesday afternoon for demos by our partners who, along with myself, look forward to seeing you and answering your questions. ChefConf also has six talks on Habitat, including real world stories about how companies such as GE and Media Temple are leveraging Habitat.

James Casey

James Casey is the VP of Partner Integration at Chef.