The British Army has chosen to migrate its physical private cloud environment to Red Hat Enterprise Linux. Red Hat, which has headquarters in Raleigh, North Carolina, United States, was established in 1993. The company is best known for its Red Hat Enterprise Linux Operating System (OS), but also offers a range of services that include business software solutions. The migration will also see the Army use Red Hat’s Ansible Tower for automation and orchestration purposes.
With headquarters in Andover, Hampshire, United Kingdom, the British Army has 19,000 soldiers stationed in 27 countries globally. The migration addresses support and compatibility issues the Army was experiencing with their previous ‘legacy’ solution, including extended downtime when applying upgrades and late updates. While their new solution embraces DevOps methodologies it allows them to “deliver software more quickly and without downtime”. It is being managed by the Army’s ‘Information Application Services’ (IAS) branch.
By migrating to Red Hat Enterprise Linux and Ansible Tower the British Army will improve “consistency and simplify management”, enabling them to quickly deliver applications and reduce downtime. The Army is leveraging Red Hat’s Ansible Tower to automate patch installation and configuration updates to Red Hat Enterprise Linux. With Ansible “the Army has accelerated its pace of change by 75 percent”, with upgrades now taking less than two hours.
“We want to deliver software quicker and more efficiently to meet the end users’ requirements and we absolutely made the right choice with Ansible,” explained British Army’s Head of Operations, IAS Branch, Lt Col. Dorian Seabrook. “It works for us on a number of levels, and the adoption throughout the organisation is now starting to really take hold. Previously, communicating the delivery timescales for large projects could be quite stressful. Now, in most cases, we’re delivering quicker than the users can actually absorb the changes. Our users are just staggered by the agility and the turnaround time and what we can now offer them.”
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