Course info
Jul 17, 2017

Technology is changing at an ever-increasing rate. Humans can no longer effectively maintain the administration of technology without leveraging automation. Automation is the key to surviving in today's tech world. Throughout this course, Orchestration and Automation: The Big Picture, you'll learn what automation is and how to manage automation with orchestration. You'll also learn the benefits of investing in these two technologies and how they can make your daily work easier and more enjoyable. By the end of the course, you'll have an understanding of what orchestration and automation are and why they're beneficial to today's IT landscape.

About the author
About the author

Josh Duffney is an IT Professional turned PowerShell Developer who is fascinated by all things DevOps and automation. He is a Pluralsight author, speaker, blogger, technical writer, and an automation engineer.

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Section Introduction Transcripts
Section Introduction Transcripts

Course Overview
Hello everyone. My name is Josh Duffney, and welcome to my course, Orchestration and Automation: The Big Picture. It's no secret that technology is changing at an ever-increasing rate, a rate at which we can longer effectively maintain the administration of technology without leveraging automation. Automation is the key to surviving and thriving in today's tech world. This course starts off by introducing you to what automation is and how to use it. Next, it covers the benefits of automation. I will discuss the benefits that you will receive as an individual, as well as the benefits an entire organization gets when their teams start to leverage automation effectively. The course then moves on to talk about orchestration and how you can use orchestration to manage your automation. You will also learn about the different types of orchestration. Understanding these different types will help you choose which orchestration tool is best suited for your automation. By the end of this course, you will have the foundational knowledge required to start implementing automation, as well as how to manage it with orchestration. I hope you will join me on this journey and learn more about automation and orchestration.

Discovering the Benefits of Automation
The transition from being a point-click operator to an automator isn't always easy. There is a bit of a learning curve each time you encounter a new set of challenges, and with that learning curve requires additional time to complete the task, but often that's only the first time around. Still, this cost is more than most people are willing to pay, even though it pays dividends in the end. That's why it's important to understand the benefits of automation, both the short-term and the long-term. Understanding the benefits of automation will help you push past the urge to resort to your old ways of manually completing tasks. At this point in the story, Quinn has already embraced automation, and he took it upon himself to automate several of his routine tasks to free up time, which would allow him to work on bigger projects, and of course, to further his knowledge about automation. So far Quinn has automated the retrieval of information from servers. This was a common and very frequent request from developer teams wanting to know more about the systems their code resides on. The next task that Quinn automated was updating and restarting of servers. He's quite thrilled that he doesn't have to spend one weekend a month patching systems. The next task that he automated was the remediation of low disk space on critical servers. Other admins and operators on his team and other teams would often leave large temp files on the system, and to preserve storage he wrote some automation to clean up the temp files along with some other known directories and files when a server reached a certain percent of disk space full. The last request that Quinn automated was the installation of software. He was able to work with the service desk team to provide a self-service solution for users to request certain software.

Types of Orchestration
There are several different types of orchestration tools, and each of them is designed for a different purpose, but all of them can be used to manage automation. This module focuses on breaking them down and explaining each type of orchestration. As you progress through the module, you'll have a better understanding of each type of orchestration and how it can be used to manage your automation. Going back to our storyline for a moment, Quinn now has an understanding of the benefits of orchestration and even has a broad understanding of how they work. But, he doesn't know which type of orchestration to use for his automation. After speaking with several different teams within his organization, he learned that several of them have their own orchestration tool. However, each of them operates differently and he's not sure what's the best fit for his automation. Quinn has two main questions that he wants to answer before he decides where to put his automation. What types of orchestration are there? He's curious if there's a better orchestrator for his automation or if he should just use another team's implementation. The other question he wants to answer is, how do they work? Quinn wants a better understanding of each type of orchestration so he can make well-informed decisions when it comes time to choose an orchestration tool for his automation.