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Infrastructure tools company Chef is further integrating with Amazon Web Services to address customers’ compliance and containerized application lifecycle management needs.

“Flexibility here is really important to give customers choices on how they want to operate Chef in the environments they’re designing so they can make the decision that’s right for their situation rather than forcing them into something that isn’t really natural for them,” said Matt Carter, senior director of product marketing at Chef.

The announcements are made in the run-up to AWS re:Invent, to be held Nov. 27-Dec. 1 in Las Vegas.

The company last month released application packaging software-as-service Habitat Builder, built on its open source Habitat tool, which was unveiled last year. Through the SaaS offering or full service, customers can decide to use the managed or non-managed option, on AWS or on-premises.

Among the announcements:

  • Application teams can now package applications with Habitat Builder and output them natively to EC2 Container Registry (Amazon ECR). This enables easy application automation and workload migration to Amazon EC2 Container Service (ECS).
  • Amazon OpsWorks for Chef Automate now includes the latest capabilities of Chef Automate, providing a compliance-as-code solution. This enables customers to scan their entire infrastructure for security risks and compliance issues, generate reports classified by severity and impact levels and build automated testing into their deployment pipelines.
  • Chef is now a member of the AWS Public Sector Partner Program, and Chef Automate is now available in the AWS GovCloud (U.S.) marketplace and AWS Marketplace for the U.S. Intelligence Community.
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Beyond just getting into the marketplace, the company is working to ensure customers have the training and support to manage compliance and configuration with Chef in the Amazon private clouds as well, Carter said.

The new services “allow developers to focus on things they want to be opinionated about, such as how to deliver features, how to deliver features quickly, how to deliver features in the language that you care about, and not have to worry about ‘Am I building for Docker or EC2 or Kubernetes?’” Carter said.

“We want developers to be able to build applications in a familiar way and operations can pick them up and run them in the place the organization cares to be,” Carter said. It means organizations can target EC2 without having the learn the nuances of EC2.”

Support for the whole application lifecycle is the direction the company’s moving, Carter said.

Last May, it announced integration between Automate, its continuous automation platform and the compliance automation framework InSpec, and between Automate and Habitat, extending Habitat’s ability to deploy and manage applications from legacy platforms to container-based microservices.

Marc Holmes, vice president of marketing at Chef, calls AWS the company’s “turnkey managed solution at the moment.” However, it’s also working with Azure and pushed out cookbooks for managing core Google Cloud services last month.

Enterprise Strategy Group analyst Edwin Yuen said of Chef in a blog post:

“Chef is focused on ‘outcome-oriented IT,’ where the outcomes drive the applications and the selection of infrastructure to support it, as opposed to traditional ‘infrastructure-oriented IT,’ where the infrastructure drives how applications are made, which impacts the outcomes. … I certainly see Chef leading the way by becoming not just an automation provider used by enterprises but by becoming the enterprise-wide automation platform of choice.”

Chef, Google and Microsoft are sponsors of InApps Technology.

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InApps Technology is a wholly owned subsidiary of Insight Partners, an investor in the following companies mentioned in this article: Docker.


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