Total’s ‘Apollo’ DevOps in-the-cloud

2,000 app portfolio to be rationalized and lift-and-shifted to the public cloud. ‘Strategically differentiating’ apps to be developed in-house with multi-cloud DevOps approach.

Speaking at a recent meeting of France’s CRIP* organization, Jean-Baptiste Richard and Olivier Tran presented Total’s ‘Apollo’ project, a blend of DevOps and a major shift to the public cloud. The Apollo project is managed by Total’s Global IT Services division, a ‘solution maker’ for the group. Total currently has some 2,000 legacy apps running in an on-prem data center. Total’s roadmap envisages a rationalization of the portfolio, and a ‘lift and shift’ of selected applications leveraging a ‘multi-cloud’ approach. For ‘strategically differentiating’ applications, the Apollo project will provide a framework for home-grown development in the cloud. Central to Apollo is DevOps, both an ‘IT culture and state of mind’ where IT works hand-in-hand with the business, sharing the objectives and providing continuous application delivery and automated IT provisioning. DevOps in turn leverages ‘agile’ development, an iterative approach that spans data science, development and cyber security. ‘MLOps’ (machine learning) also ran.

Total is moving to the cloud because ‘everything is there’, from machine learning, through containerization, identity management and ‘infrastructure as code’. The first trials were performed on Microsoft Azure leveraging a continuous integration and deployment approach with Kubernetes orchestration, containers and ‘templatization’. Projects run under Github on Azure leveraging tools such as Sonarqube (quality), Veracode (security), Apache JMeter (test) and the Helm Kubernetes package manager.

Some twenty of Total’s developers underwent extensive on-site DevOps training. This experience has shown that DevOps is considerably more demanding than vanilla ‘Agile’, adding more constraints but resulting in a better team spirit and a shared responsibility for the delivered product. The process has resulted in satisfied users and coherent software components for application development. ‘The DevOps hype is not entirely unjustified’.

In 2019 the Apollo program proper kicked off, now running in the Google cloud and adding further security with a ‘DevSecOps’ component. In the Q&A Richard intimated that prior to Apollo, Total’s development was performed in multiple in-house and externalized service provision. Apollo means a shift to centralized in-house development.

* CRIP is a Paris-based not-for-profit IT industry body.

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