CloudShare, a provider of virtual environments in the cloud, has announced CloudShare Labs, a new self-service solution for agile application development and testing.
CloudShare officials said the solution expands the company's platform to meet the growing demand for customized IT environments. CloudShare Labs is the newest of CloudShare's integrated suite of self-service solutions for creating, customizing and sharing virtual environments for a range of business needs, including development and testing, sales and marketing, and virtual training.
Business groups across the enterprise constantly compete for access to IT resources customized for their specific objectives, according to CloudShare. A recent Gartner report indicates that through 2015, only 10 percent of infrastructure and operations organizations will be able to deliver the speed of change required by the business processes they enable.
"There continues to be consistent demand for self-service development and test environments for internal developers as a prime use case for enterprises' cloud efforts," Aneel Lakhani, research director for virtualization and cloud at Gartner, told eWEEK. "The retirement of VMware's Lab Manager product has driven interest in alternatives and opened the doors to other vendors focusing on that use case via on-premises software and also via external cloud-based offerings."
"Limited and slow access to infrastructure causes delays in release cycles and puts testing at risk of being incomplete, resulting in bugs in production. Lack of access to IT infrastructure and the limitation of existing solutions remain huge barriers to rapid innovation," said Zvi Guterman, CEO of CloudShare, in a statement. "With CloudShare Labs, application development and testing organizations work faster and companies will find a competitive advantage by gaining access to IT resources at the speed of development."
Indeed, with CloudShare, users get immediate access to infrastructure resources that have been optimized for their specific line of business, enabling them to work without the need for specific IT operations expertise, the company said.
CloudShare Labs enables development and testing groups working with complex, multitier enterprise applications to rapidly create and provision environments for build verification, test automation and manual testing without changing any of their in-house tools or processes.
CloudShare Labs also provides simplified bug fixing, by enabling the capture of a multi-VM disk and memory state to freeze a bug in its environment so it can be shared with developers and corrected without the bug having to be reproduced in a different environment. Plus, it provides the ability to clone a master environment to eliminate mistakes caused by misconfiguration. And it enables collaboration among cross-functional and global teams through a Web browser, console or SSH session. Groups can also create and store libraries of templates for later reuse.
"One of the challenges of these solutions is being able to reproduce the existing dev/test environment, copy it, back it up, take snapshots in time, etc.," Lakhani said. "Beyond the basic process of automating the process of request, provision and delivery of virtual machines—those capabilities are starting to show up in customer requirements and drive purchase decisions."
Overall, CloudShare Labs extends an enterprise's existing on-premises development and testing environment to the cloud. Using an organization's virtual private network (VPN), teams can connect to CloudShare to gain access to more resources or collaborate with anyone, anywhere in the world.
Moreover, the new solution integrates with the leading application lifecycle management (ALM) and software development lifecycle (SDLC) processes and tools, such as Microsoft's Team Foundation Server and the Jenkins open-source continuous integration server.