TeleStax

TeleStax Leads Mobicents Development Community with DEV@cloud

Telecommunication service providers and enterprises rely on TeleStax solutions to create scalable communication applications based on open source and open standards. TeleStax Enterprise Edition - TelScale™ provides high availability and fault tolerance features that support reliable, scalable and high-performance cloud communications solutions. TelScale includes a suite of advanced management products and is built upon Mobicents, an open source core platform.

TeleStax is using the CloudBees DEV@cloud Platform as a Service (PaaS) solution to lead and maintain the open source Mobicents project, which forms part of the open core of the carrier grade TelScale solution. “With DEV@cloud we have a reliable development infrastructure, with greatly reduced costs and low maintenance,” says Jean Deruelle, co-founder of TeleStax. “Continuous integration (CI) with Jenkins has been a key part of the Mobicents project for years. DEV@cloud gives us a great deal of flexibility because Mobicents contributors can interact directly with the CloudBees platform, run Jenkins jobs and check the status and quality of ongoing development projects.”

Challenge

TeleStax was founded by Deruelle, Amit Bhayani and Ivelin Ivanov soon after Red Hat made the decision to sunset the JBoss Communications Platform, which was built from Mobicents. To assume the lead on development and support of Mobicents, TeleStax needed to transition the project from Red Hat, which included moving the continuous integration jobs from the Jenkins infrastructure hosted at Red Hat. “We had two choices. We could build the infrastructure ourselves or use a PaaS solution in the cloud,” recalls Deruelle.

As a start-up, the company sought to avoid the sizeable up-front expense of setting up its own infrastructure, but there were long term considerations as well. “We needed Jenkins in place for regression testing to ensure that every commit maintained compatibility with the SIP Servlet 1.1 (JSR 289) Technology Compatibility Kit (TCK) and specification. We didn’t, however, want to take care of the setup, maintenance, upgrades and ongoing cost of running Jenkins as a service ourselves,” Deruelle notes. “There was no value in setting up our own infrastructure. Our main focus was building the company, developing our TelScale products and supporting our customers.”

Solution

TeleStax selected the CloudBees DEV@cloud solution to support community development of Mobicents and its own leadership role in that development.

Mobicents encompasses multiple development projects, with each project having its own code base and to some extent its own set of contributors. TeleStax is using the Jenkins services within DEV@cloud to ensure that as new code is contributed there are no regressions and the project remains compliant with the Java specification. TeleStax has developed an additional set of tests that complement the TCK tests, covering use cases not addressed by the TCK. These tests are also run on the CloudBees Jenkins infrastructure.

Because development is done in the cloud, the Mobicents community has immediate access to the latest updates. When issues are fixed, a snapshot release is created and posted publicly. The community can try the fix immediately, verify that it addresses the problem and provide instant feedback. TeleStax has already migrated most of the Mobicents projects from the Red Hat systems to DEV@cloud, and the process has been straightforward. “When we moved to CloudBees and began setting up jobs and everything else we needed, it went quickly. The only changes we needed to make were to the CI job scripts to migrate from the old infrastructure to CloudBees,” says Deruelle.

With DEV@cloud, the Mobicents project has acquired a vital new capability for external contributors. Previously, these contributors weren’t allowed access to run jobs. Now, external contributors can be assigned roles that allow write access to the repository as well as the ability to run jobs. “This is important, because when an external contributor wants to contribute a major new feature to the code base, we can now integrate it and test the update before it goes into the main stream,” notes Deruelle.

Results

  • Costs reduced by 75% or more. “Setting up our own development infrastructure in the cloud would cost up to four times more than DEV@cloud with the CloudBees Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) program,” says Deruelle. “And, if we were to set up and maintain our own servers, it would cost significantly more than that.”
  • Reliability improved. “Our TelScale development is also run in the cloud, but on an Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) platform that we maintain ourselves. A recent crash on that platform caused us to lose our Jenkins master instance, requiring a reset and costing us two weeks’ worth of effort,” says Deruelle. “That kind of problem would never happen with CloudBees because the data is backed-up. We are looking into migrating TelScale to CloudBees, as well. We have experienced a high quality of service in using the CloudBees PaaS.”
  • Development streamlined, bug fixes turned around in 20% less time. “Continuous integration with Jenkins and DEV@cloud has reduced turn-around time for bug fixes by at least 20 percent,” says Deruelle. “Plus, our internal contributors can concentrate on development instead of maintaining infrastructure, and our external contributors have the access they need to run jobs and work more efficiently. We’ve had no complaints from our contributors, which is impressive because open source communities are very vocal.”