On Managing Configuration as Code (CaC)

When your enterprise financial application suddenly stop behaving as per your expectations, it is crucial to know what changes were made. Current enterprise applications are complex and built using multiple layers of software components, which makes it challenging to accurately and swiftly find the configuration changes. 

 These changes can happen in any layer of the technology stack from the Hardware layer up to the operating system & database layers and then within the application servers & the client’s machine browsers. Effectively managing configurations of your complete stack, should involve the ability to rollback changes automatically if errors are detected.

What is Configuration as Code?

Configuration as Code (CaC) allows you to manage configuration resources as versioned artifacts. It provides a single source of truth for all components in your eco-system. Modern cloud providers like AWS, Oracle, Azure and Google provide these facilities out of the box for their respective cloud services. AWS CloudFormation is a great example for creating a CaC for all your infrastructure components. Very few modern Lending and Leasing applications, like Oracle Financial Services Lending & Leasing (OFSLL) provide the CaC capability out of the box to manage versions of configuration data for both factory shipped data and user configured data. By managing your application configuration in tandem with your application code, you gain the same benefits that you get from versioning your code.

Why CAC is important?

If implemented effectively, CaC can troubleshoot issues faster, reduce the risk of outages and security breaches through visibility and tracking. CaC provides a single source of truth for all your resources and helps you to standardize multiple configuration components across your technology stack. CaC is necessary for rapidly detecting and correcting improper configurations which could negatively impact your system’s availability. 

Some Key Benefits of Implementing CAC

In addition to rapid trouble-shooting issues, there are several other benefits of implementing configuration as code for your applications and technology stack:
  • Visibility
  • Stability
  • Scalability
  • Security
  • Automation
  • Compliance
  • Consistency
  • Reusability
  • Extensibility

CaC is essential tool for successfully managing the provisioning of your technology stack. Should there ever be a failure, it can be used to gracefully roll the configuration back to a former functioning version.

About the Author:

Vinay Bhatia is an experienced product leader, passionate about building financial products that delight customers. He has an extensive background in technology, cloud and agile software development.

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