The times of manual administration, at least in the server environment, are a thing of the past. Obviously, someone still has to maintain the physical hardware, but the majority of servers are generally operated in a virtual environment. Virtualization has naturally also resulted in a sharp increase in the number of servers to be managed.

These days, a high level of automation is therefore an important infrastructural aspect in the server environment. This also applies for all cloud technologies, although the tools differ in some cases. But, even here, the degree of automation is decisive for the efficient and certainly also for the reliable operation of an infrastructure.


The virtualization of machines is currently still a popular way of making better use of available hardware. This saves on resources in procurement as well as energy in operation.

Virtualization is therefore the basis of many IT infrastructure landscapes. In practice, “small-scale” virtualization can be implemented using Linux standard tools, like KVM or Xen, as well as with elaborate systems, such as Proxmox, oVirt, or OpenStack. These scale from one or two up to several hundred hardware machines in a cluster. At these dimensions, automation to install the virtualization platform is already an inherent necessity.

Software deployment

Software deployment refers to the automated, unattended installation of software. This may include regular and continuous updates.

Software deployment also includes the initial provisioning of a computer system with the operating system. This is where software components, such as Ansible, Puppet, and Fully Automatic Installation (FAI), are combined in virtual or physical machines.

These generally provide at least a basic configuration. Lifecycle management tools, such as Foreman, Spacewalk, or Red Hat Satellite, are often also integrated, as these can suitably provision a system when first starting out in the network environment.

Configuration management

Configuration management starts with long-established technologies, such as DHCP. These days however, this typically refers to the advanced configuration of a host. This is also mapped with components such as Ansible and Puppet.

These tools can only be used with significant restrictions in some areas of cloud technologies. This is where the use of ad-hoc tools, such as etcd or Consul is preferred. These store configuration data for services and provision corresponding service containers as part of every start-up. But this approach is very similar to orchestration.

Software management

Current Linux distributions contain practically all the necessary tools for software management. These tools are generally pooled under the term “package manager” or similar. They ensure that packaged software is installed at the specifically defined point, dependencies are automatically considered, and that basic configurations are in place.

Configuration management systems generally use these tools to install certain software packages.


Put simply, in IT orchestration refers to configuring and managing various services so that they combine to map a desired business process.

In some cases, the service configuration is a critical element in this respect – but appropriate middleware also needs to be used in certain situations. This may be a message broker or the provision of an appropriate API, or interfaces such as SOAP or REST.

The area of configuration can make use of configuration management methods as well as provisioning services, such as ZooKeeper, etcd, or Consul.

Open Source Support Center
PostgreSQL® Competence Center

Have we piqued your interest?

Our experts will be happy to answer your specific questions and support you in choosing the right open source solution for your project.

The credativ®
Open Source Support Center

Our answers to the most frequently asked questions:

Our support is focused on the actual needs of our customers. This means that we naturally offer more support than the traditional support offered by many manufacturers. But what’s important, and this applies for any software that is operated in business-critical areas, is that the operation is appropriately secured. This is where we provide technical support at the manufacturer level with guaranteed service level agreements.
All of our employees are experienced Open Source developers and administrators. We are the replacement for missing manufacturer support, and support the entire lifecycle of your Open Source software by means of our Open Source Support Center. We provide the necessary support and all the services for your entire Open Source stack under one roof.
Our service and support contracts take account of your interests, not those of investors. We deliberately use completely different contract and price models to those of countless international software manufacturers and are proud that our fair support offers are a solid and reliable basis for long-term and successful cooperation with large national and international customers. We also want to provide a model that is completely independent of the usual factors, such as the number of users, the number of CPUs/cores and servers used or similar limiting factors. We would be pleased to discuss further details with you personally. More about the operation of our Open Source Support Centers
We guarantee it! You receive the certainty that you need. We are always there for you. Around the clock, 365 days a year. You can find more information under 24x7 support.
Don’t worry! We operate without an intervening call center. You receive direct access to our Open Source specialists. You can reach our support via central dispatching by phone, ticket system, or email. You can find more information under Availability.
Our Open Source Support Center is located in the Federal Republic of Germany and all our technical specialists are employed on a permanent basis. We provide both national and international support, in German or English as required.
Our technical support covers a range of popular Open Source projects, which are often operated in business-critical applications. You can find a selection of the projects supported by our Open Source Support Center in our software overview. More information is available under Software.
Absolutely! When a technical fault occurs, the cause needs to be determined quickly and precisely, and eliminated, or at least an initial workaround needs to be found. That’s why we offer guaranteed service level agreements for availability as well as for different response times.