The DevOps approach to software development introduces the DevOps pipeline, a set of tools and processes for optimizing the Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC). Since infrastructure management is a significant factor in the SDLC, DevOps requires effective Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) solutions to ensure a smooth and efficient pipeline.
This article focuses on the IaaS API as a vital component of a quality IaaS offering.
What is IaaS API?
The IaaS API (Application Programming Interface) is a type of Cloud API that controls cloud infrastructure resources. Infrastructure engineers use IaaS APIs to describe tasks to the IaaS servers. The servers then perform the requested operations, such as:
- Provisioning and managing hardware resources like servers and network-attached storage (NAS).
- Setting up private and public networks.
- Organizing network security with network access control (NAC).
IaaS APIs allow developers to integrate infrastructure management into their workflows. Their primary role in the pipeline is to provide an interface between infrastructure providers, software, and developers.
IaaS API Benefits
The benefits of IaaS API integration into the development pipeline include simplifying the development process and shortening the SDLC. On another level, Iaas APIs reduce costs and improve security.
The following sections detail the benefits of IaaS API for software development.
Simplified Infrastructure Management
IaaS APIs help working with infrastructure by offering bulk management capabilities. Engineers can:
- Simultaneously provision or deprovision multiple servers with a single request.
- Manage usage quotas.
- Organize private and public networks.
Furthermore, the IaaS API approach is platform-agnostic and promotes interoperability across operating systems. Developers do not have to worry about the underlying infrastructure and can focus on the product itself. This property simplifies the process of cross-platform app development, especially in the testing stage.
Automation is a fundamental DevOps principle and the primary method for increasing productivity in the pipeline. IaaS APIs integrate server management into the larger automation context.
Another important benefit of server automation is that it reduces the chance of human error during infrastructure provisioning and maintenance. Using IaaS APIs saves developers time spent on troubleshooting faulty configurations.
Note: For a tutorial on how to one-click deploy highly-available Kubernetes environments on Bare Metal Cloud infrastructure, read How to one-click deploy Kubernetes on BMC.
A good IaaS API provides enough granularity to present users with adequate configuration options. At the same time, it hides some of its complexity to offer a user-friendly experience.
The granularity also allows users to better control the infrastructure costs. Options such as subscriptions, reservations, monthly billing, and billing by the hour, provide sufficient choice to create a custom usage strategy.
The ability to scale resources depending on the current needs is one of the essential IaaS benefits. IaaS APIs support both horizontal and vertical scaling in just a couple of requests. The scalability improves performance and lowers the project cost.
Disaster Recovery Support
Disaster recovery can be difficult and costly to set up and maintain, particularly for larger companies with offices in multiple regions. IaaS providers frequently offer combined disaster recovery and business continuity plans to mitigate this issue. Along with backup and restore solutions, these plans reduce recovery costs and improve manageability in critical situations.
Utilizing IaaS APIs is a business continuity best practice because it helps companies to ensure the maximum availability of their infrastructure in all situations. Well-thought-out IaaS API workflow integration can significantly shorten the recovery time after hardware malfunction.
Simplified infrastructure management, server automation, and easy scaling, contribute to an optimized software development life cycle. The role of an IaaS API in this process is to provide a toolset for creating infrastructure optimization strategies.
An optimized SDLC means a shorter time to market. Fast software delivery creates a competitive advantage in the market by increasing the product's visibility.
IaaS reduces production costs by cutting maintenance expenditures normally associated with physically owning infrastructure. Furthermore, thanks to the IaaS scalability feature, companies using IaaS do not have to spend money on buying or renting more capacity than necessary.
Note: Use our cloud pricing calculator to estimate your potential costs of running BMC servers. Cloud costs can easily go out of control, and that's why we offer transparent pricing and help our partners plan their budget adequately.
IaaS APIs are the most secure way to handle infrastructure provisioning. They integrate authorization protocols that guarantee secure authorization procedures while remaining simple to use.
Note: phoenixNAP is a global IaaS provider offering on-demand consumption of infrastructure resources. Our wide solutions portfolio guarantees we can meet your unique needs.
How Does IaaS API Work?
The API type commonly employed in infrastructure management is the REST API. REST APIs are stateless and feature HTTP request-based communication between users and the server.
Users manage available resources by applying four CRUD operations:
Delete. The operations are introduced by issuing commands (methods), such as:
POST- The command that sends the instruction to
GET- The method that performs the
Readoperation on the selected resource and returns the collected information.
PATCH- The methods for resource
DELETE- The method for applying the
Deleteoperation on a resource.
IaaS APIs provision resources by issuing API calls with Request Trackers. Trackers check the provisioning procedure and report back once the resource is ready.
Note: The Bare Metal Cloud API lets you provision and deprovision resources automatically through simple API calls. Bare Metal Cloud also provides native integrations with Infrastructure-as-Code tools, such as Pulumi, Ansible, and Terraform making it an excellent choice for DevOps teams.
The article discussed the role of the API in Infrastructure-as-a-Service. After reading the article, you should understand what an IaaS API is, how it works, and the expected benefits of integrating it into your SDLC.