Harness brings GitOps to its software delivery platform

Harness, the ML-enhanced software delivery platform helmed by AppDynamics co-founder Jyoti Bansal, is getting on the GitOps train.

While the service started out with a focus on continuous delivery, it has since broadened its feature set in an effort to become a full-stack DevOps platform for startups and enterprises. Those include continuous integration, cloud cost management, feature flags and more.

The company’s overall mission, though, hasn’t changed, Bansal said. “Harness, when we started, had this ambitious goal: almost every business in the world wants to become a software business — can we bring them the same level of sophistication of tools for their software engineers that a Google or Facebook or Amazon or Netflix would have? Those kinds of companies have a major advantage in that they have really well-built software engineering practices and tooling that the rest of the businesses don’t,” he said.

The company, which now has 600 employees, is now adding another feature to its list with the launch of its GitOps services. With Kubernetes becoming increasingly popular, even in traditional enterprises, GitOps as a way to develop and deploy applications into these clusters is also on the rise. It’s no surprise then that Harness, which counts some of the world’s largest retailers and banks among its customers, would want to support this model, too.

Harness is building its GitOps platform on top of ArgoCD, a declarative GitOps tool for Kubernetes that was first developed by Applatix (which was acquired by Intuit back in 2018) and is now under the umbrella of the Cloud Native Computing Foundation. “It’s very powerful. People like that it’s lightweight, you can automate your developer workflows and most of the deployment mechanisms,” Bansal explained. “The challenge with GitOps is that it’s extremely, extremely hard to operationalize in real complex enterprise environments.”

And that’s where Harness comes in by offering a SaaS-style GitOps service that ads enterprise capabilities on top of ArgoCD. “We are making GitOps accessible and more practical for all enterprises to use. It’s really enterprise-grade GitOps. People love GitOps, but it’s been hard for them to use it without using a lot of bandaids and duct tape to make it work — and now you have a real enterprise solution and the first SaaS offering for GitOps as well.”