EMC IT: Using Pivotal Cloud Foundry to Streamline Product Licensing

June 29, 2015 Roman Gokhman

sfeatured-emcPivotal is helping a world storage leader streamline its product licensing and licensing applications across all lines of business. Massachusetts-based EMC helps businesses push through digital transformation with data and virtual infrastructure. The $20-plus billion company offers data storage, as well as back-up, recovery and 80 other product lines across markets and segments.

EMC faced a challenge. Multiple licensing algorithms and schemes are required to support EMC’s broad portfolio of products. The company had to determine the best way to design a solution that would support the rapidly changing licensing demands of the product portfolio.

“We have to be able to react very quickly and support a global customer base,” said Brian Walsh, application licensing architect at EMC. “We need a platform that allows us to rapidly build licensing applications to support the complete lifecycle of licensing transactions that EMC has with customers.”

While exploring solutions in 2014, Walsh and his team were introduced to Pivotal Cloud Foundry. EMC quickly realized that the cloud-native application platform provided the freedom to abstract underlying virtual infrastructures and provide full lifecycle management of apps and microservices. In addition, Pivotal Cloud Foundry met the needs of EMC’s current and future projects, such as building portals and creating mobile apps.

Since Pivotal Cloud Foundry was designed to run microservices architectures, EMC developers could focus on creating self-contained components with specific functionality and test each independently. It took about one quarter for EMC leaders to build the business case, bring on a systems integrator, and onboard developers. Then, EMC began building the company’s first microservices. Approximately 35 microservices will be completed by August 2015.

As a result, EMC has been able to deliver products to the market much faster than ever before. It used to take three months to provision an application development platform, and now it takes hours. With this approach, developers can also scale up apps in a single command or add additional services in a simple, easy-to-use manner. By using a microservices-based architecture, developers gain many benefits, like a much faster time to fix bugs. With this new architecture, the team has already begun to improve the overall application quality and performance—something that impacts EMC employees and customer directly.

EMC will soon begin to release code on a monthly basis. With more room to decrease application deployment cycles, EMC is transitioning to an agile software development shop.

“Being able to create a microservice, put in the business logic we need, and then expose it, improves our ability to meet changes and support our products as quickly as possible,” Walsh said.

EMC plans to use Pivotal Cloud Foundry as its primary application platform architecture in the future. While the company has other business goals and applications to develop, Pivotal Cloud Foundry is the foundation for its user intelligence capabilities and will be a major part of its portal release project, as well as future work to automate license activation and enhance reporting., Walsh said.

Read the complete EMC IT case study to find out how Pivotal Cloud Foundry has improved software development practices, how the company is using the new technology to innovate, and what applications EMC plans to build in the future.

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