CA Release Automation Review

Everyone deploys with the same tools, which helps with standardization, transparency and risk awareness. However, we have stability issues on a daily basis as we push the edges of the tool.


Valuable Features

The frictionless end-to-end, automated deployments. Before we did manual deployments working with different parties, we removed those handovers which makes it frictionless. It’s fault-tolerant without human errors; it's agnostic. It’s consolidated on one tool instead of multiple solutions with manual implementations.

Improvements to My Organization

Everyone deploys with the same tools – standardization; it makes the exchange of people within a large organization easier. Transparency, risk awareness, and it offers centralized solutions for compliance checks. Delivery to customers is also much faster, whether it’s an internal or external customer.

Room for Improvement

Stability could be improved. For functionality, it needs versioning.

Stability Issues

We push the edges of the tool, so we have a lot of stability issues on a daily basis. The database interface, the users who access that data – when it goes down it affects a lot of clients. It impacts a lot of applications once it breaks up.

There are misinterpretations of data between an application if it’s written in a certain way, fit to use with different databases for examples with the hibernate layer, the layer can wrongly execute.

The RA product itself is able to produce queries which you can easily program, but which translate into taking a huge amount of memory which is not available in a server. If you’re in an ROC you see an overview of all your deployments, maybe 25-50 deployments with the query underneath, which queries everything that hasn’t been run. For several hundred applications that translates into huge overhead and performance problems. We’re working very closely with CA to address these problems.

Scalability Issues

It’s not scalable; we can never deploy this in an HA environment. We think they have to reprogram the core of the system, but it depends on which environment you’re using the solution in. If you’re using the solution in a less intensive, small business it could be more usable.

Customer Service and Technical Support

They do good work. We’re working closely with them. For our issues we think the solution needs a basic redesign.

Previous Solutions

Tools from other companies are more focused on Java implementations. We have a lot of off the shelf customers we have to work with, so at that time RA was able to do that. We had a lot of teams already doing work automating their deployments, so we looked for a cohesive approach. We were also deploying Secure Shell, so a mix of agents with Java and non-Java applications.

Initial Setup

It was straightforward. It implemented very quickly, it wasn’t an issue. No big issues.

Other Solutions Considered

We looked for a solution that was less sales orientated, more roadmap, and had a development culture. That’s something CA can improve. We'd like more support.

We looked at Xebia, UrbanCode, Open Source Jenkins. It was because of use of agents and the ability to deploy non-Java code.

Other Advice

Without stability issues and all those internal escalations, it would be a 7 or 8/10. Organize your culture first, then process, then look at which tool you’re going to use.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
1 Comment
Senior Director Product Management at a tech company with 10,001+ employeesVendor

Hi,
Thanks for taking the time to post the review.
It would be informative to know on which version you are on. A lot has been changed since this post has been written. We are constantly working with our largest customers to make sure we improve the scale, performance and stability of the product as it is a mission critical solution among many of our users.

I'd be happy to take it offline with you and discuss the issues you have faced.

Uri

CA Release Automation Product Manager

09 September 16
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