Secure Multi-Cloud Environments with MacStadium

By Jeff Vincent|

March 23, 2021

Modern applications are developed across multiple platforms – whether they are strictly mobile offerings or they are targeting an even broader spectrum of hardware. Most teams that are targeting macOS or iOS in addition to other platforms will likely need to stitch together multiple build environments in order to create CI/CD pipelines for each platform their product is targeting.

This is because most major cloud vendors either don’t offer macOS infrastructure, or their offerings place too great a limitation on CI/CD pipeline design for teams to accomplish exactly what they need for their specific use case while avoiding vendor lock. Moreover, for teams who execute CI/CD jobs on-premise, the prospect of managing a bank of Apple hardware as build servers for iOS or macOS CI/CD jobs is often either too far outside their wheelhouse or too expensive to be a practical solution.

Once teams recognize the need for a multi-cloud environment or an extension to their on-premise processes, the next question is most likely where to extend their current setup, and how to do so securely and efficiently.

MacStadium recognizes this as a fundamental need for many of our customers, and we have defined a relatively simple, and truly secure means of connecting MacStadium build environments with any external environments your team is already utilizing, including those deployed in any of the major cloud vendors' offerings.

We use a system referred to as site-to-site VPN in order to allow secure connections to be made to a MacStadium environment from external resources. This is a persistent, secure connection that encrypts all traffic from external resources by way of our customizable Cisco firewalls.

One of the most common use cases for site-to-site VPN connections with MacStadium comes when DevOps teams have a CI/CD master, such as a Jenkins server, stood up in AzureAWS or GCP. These teams' builds, say targeting Android and Windows, will almost certainly be carried out in the same environment in which the master has been stood up; however, parallel builds targeting macOS or iOS will likely need to be executed elsewhere.

Sophisticated CI/CD systems such as these need to be as efficient as possible, which means that teams will do well to select a vendor that offers the best selection of tools for the job. In particular, a wide variety of both genuine Apple hardware and Mac-specific virtualization options will allow teams to iterate efficiently on their pipeline design in order to best support the long-term viability of a given iOS or macOS CI/CD workflow.

MacStadium offers the widest variety of solutions for teams targeting iOS or macOS, ranging from truly diverse hardware configurations to three distinct Mac virtualization options – OrkaVMware, and Anka. All compute resources provided by MacStadium are unbiased – that is, you can use them exactly as you like, and you won’t be tied to any specific DevOps tooling along the way.

To learn more about extending your current cloud or on-prem CI/CD processes to a private Mac cloud hosted with MacStadium, reach out to one of our sales engineers.

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