Configure Virtual Machines Faster with ElasticBox Admin Boxes

Have you ever asked a colleague for a favor, like provisioning or configuring a virtual machine, only to get the response: “Have you submitted a ticket for that?” It is no secret that in the world of development and IT operations, the traditional protocol for getting things done is through submitting tickets.

In many cases, especially at large enterprises, developers often wait weeks or months even, for the IT department to provision and configure virtual machines or instances. ElasticBox has a goal of making that experience disappear forever! ElasticBox has developed a solution that can help enterprises reduce the amount of repetitive and manual processes involved in provisioning a virtual machine.

It is easy to blame the IT department for the lag, but the truth is, they have the very serious responsibility of allocating resources and then properly configuring, hundreds or even thousands of virtual machines. What causes a delay in provisioning and configuring a virtual machine that developers can use?

One is configuring the machine to comply with the company’s standards and policies. Another is the manual steps that have to be executed on that machine for it to be prepared for use. For instance, IT admins will commonly install monitoring agents to ensure the underlying system is configured in a given way, register virtual machines in a database, or simply set up common public keys on all machines before making them available to end users.

For ElasticBox Enterprise users, this process can be fully automated using our Admin Boxes. The organization administrator can designate certain boxes that will be deployed each time a user deploys a box using a specific provider. This helps IT Operations automate some of the processes required to prepare a machine for use by developers.

Admin boxes are especially useful in these deployment scenarios:

  • Install a monitoring agent. For every machine that you launch through a particular provider, you can set up an admin box to locally install a monitoring agent like Nagios or New Relic that can monitor and send data back to a central monitoring service.
  • Set the hostname. You can configure the admin box to set the hostname of every virtual machine deployed to a provider’s environment.
  • Register virtual machines on a server. For example, each time a virtual machine is deployed, you can have an admin box register it to a Chef Master server and then release it when the machine is terminated.
  • Install certificates. You may need to install certificates locally on every virtual machine deployed for production or testing purposes. You can set up an admin box to do this.

This feature is available to all of ElasticBox enterprise customers. You can find documentation about it here.

Be sure to give ElasticBox a try today and see what all the buzz is about. For more information about enterprise features for a demo on how ElasticBox can help your organization achieve business objectives faster, please email


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