This is a follow-up Post to the Series on Resource Automation in the Cloud. This time we will talk about self-service IT. Self-service IT is an important factor for Automation. It basically enables users to solve their problems and not to talk about the technology. For instance, if the marketing department needs to run a website for a campaign, the IT should enable the department to start this “out of the box”: an empty website template (e. g. WordPress-based) should be started. Furthermore, scaling should be enabled, since the load will change over time. The website should also be branded in the corporate design. The target of self-service IT is that the IT department provides Tools and Services that gives the users more independence.
Another sample for self-service IT is the launch of virtual instances. This is a rather easy thing to accomplish as this can be handled by self-service platforms such as OpenStack, Eucalyptus or various vendor platforms. To achieve the one explained initially, much more work is necessary. If you plan to ease the job of your marketing guys, you would have to prepare not only virtual images but also scripts and templates to build the website. However, more and more self-service platforms emerge nowadays and they will definitely come with more features and possibilities over time.