Red Hat Ansible Tower 3.4 Released
January 23, 2019

Red Hat announced the general availability of Red Hat Ansible Tower 3.4, the latest version of its enterprise framework for automating across IT operations including infrastructure, networks, cloud and security.

Red Hat Ansible Tower 3.4 includes workflow enhancements including nested workflows and workflow convergence, designed to simplify challenges inherent in managing complex hybrid cloud infrastructure.

Joe Fitzgerald, VP, Management, Red Hat said: "We have seen enterprises look to build automation centers of excellence to accelerate automation across a broader set of domains, including compute, network and storage. With the new features available in Red Hat Ansible Tower 3.4 organizations are able to increase the scale and scope of their automation activities together with increased control and visibility."

A common reality for enterprises can be that separate IT teams may manage on-premises IT vs. cloud services, each with their own sets of Ansible Playbooks. To help maximize the benefits of automation across distributed infrastructure, these organizations can move beyond implementing automation to creating an automation “center of excellence.” A center of excellence helps to provide consistent automation across the enterprise, sharing common solutions and accepted strategies as automation is introduced into new areas of IT internally. With Red Hat Ansible Tower 3.4, users can now define one master workflow that ties different areas of IT together — designed to cover a hybrid infrastructure without being stopped at specific technology silos.

With Red Hat’s management portfolio, including Red Hat Satellite for Red Hat Enterprise Linux management and Red Hat CloudForms for bare metal, virtual machine and private cloud operations, integrated with Red Hat Ansible Tower, IT teams are able to more consistently orchestrate workflows across their full enterprise IT infrastructure estate.

With new workflow enhancements, users can reuse automation workflows based on different environments and scenarios to better manage their hybrid cloud infrastructure. Workflow enhancements available in Red Hat Ansible Tower 3.4 include:

- Nested workflows enable users to create reusable, modular components to automate more complex operations using Red Hat Ansible Tower with the same ease as a simple playbook.

- Workflow convergence enables users to have workflow jobs dependent on the finishing of multiple other workflow jobs prior to continuing allowing for a coordination point among different steps.

- Workflow always job templates enable execution regardless of the success or failure of a job. If a dependent service needs to be running regardless of the exit status of a workflow, a workflow always job template is designed to help keep business running.

- Workflow level inventory helps enable users to apply a workflow to inventory that they have access to, allowing for the reuse of deployment workflows across datacenters, environments and teams.

With job slicing, users can take a single large job designed for thousands of machines and split it into a number of smaller jobs for distribution across a Tower cluster environment. This allows jobs to run more reliably and complete faster for users to better scale their automation.

Additionally, Red Hat Ansible Tower is now compatible to run on Red Hat Enterprise Linux in FIPS compliant mode. Federal Information Processing Standard (FIPS 140-2) security certification from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) is a computer security standard that specifies the requirements for cryptographic modules -- including both hardware and software components -- used within a security system to protect sensitive but unclassified information. By enabling Red Hat Ansible Tower to run on Red Hat Enterprise Linux in FIPS compliant mode, organizations can meet necessary information security guidelines without compromising on their need for innovative, flexible software solutions.

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