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Introduction To Environment Requests

Environment Requests enable you to govern the process around Environment allocation and Environment change control within your organization. Plutora uses three distinct entities to achieve this:

  • Test Environment Change Requests (TECRs)
  • Test Environment Booking Requests (TEBRs)
  • Environment Bookings.

Test Environment Change Requests (TECRs)

TECRs are used to govern changes to Environments such as:

  • Code deployments
  • Database Data refresh
  • Infrastructure Updates
  • Environment Configuration updates
  • Network updates
  • Server and firmware patches.

TECRs enable you to document exactly what is changing, when it’s going to happen, and whether or not there will be planned outages. TECRs can be configured to have custom workflows with approvals and SLAs per TECR Type so you can enforce the right process and governance required. 

Using TECRs enables you to get control of non-production and gives everyone in your organization visibility of planned changes as well as an audit of prior changes.

Test Environment Booking Requests (TEBRs)

TEBRs are used to govern the process of allocating Environments to the various projects or Agile delivery teams within your organization. TEBRs enable you to request multiple Environment Bookings for a period of time and manage each request through a process of review, conflict resolution, and confirmation.

TEBRs can also be configured to have:

  • Custom fields, so you can capture detailed information.
  • Workflows with approvals and SLA, so you can enforce the right process and governance for allocating Environments. 

Using TEBRs enables you to plan and manage your Environment allocation process and gives visibility to requests. TEBRs are the recommended approach if your Environment allocation process is managed by a central team independent of your project and Agile delivery teams. 

If your Environment allocation is less complicated and your primary goal is to show the Approved allocation of Environments for reporting purposes, then alternatively you can raise Environment Bookings directly from the Release. Refer to the following articles for more details:

Environment Bookings

Environment Bookings are used to indicate exactly which Environments have been requested and Approved. For each Environment selected within a TEBR or Release, there will be an Environment Booking that enables you to review the availability of each Environment individually. Each Environment Booking has a default status of Pending and can be set to either Approved or Rejected depending on the outcome of your request. If the Environment Booking request is Pending and there is already an Approved or Pending Environment Booking for the same period then the booking will be flagged as having a Conflict. This indicates that you need to agree to share the Environment with another project or team, modify the dates of your own request, or request a new Environment Booking. 

For more information on how conflicts are calculated refer to the following article: How Are Environment Booking Conflicts Defined?

Using Environment Bookings gives you visibility of the Environment utilization throughout your entire organization, highlighting both under and over-utilization and enabling you to effectively manage the cost of non-production. Environment Bookings also enable better communication to the relevant Project and Agile delivery teams for any planned or unplanned impacts on the Environments

Manage the Environment Request Grids

The Environment Requests page allows users to view, search, and filter their TECRs, TEBRs, and My Environment Booking requests.

Open a Request by clicking the blue links on the left. You can then view, edit or delete the Request.

Page Tabs

The Environment Requests page contains the following tabs. Click each tab to view the relevant requests:

Hover your mouse cursor over a User Group in the Assigned To column under the TECR and TEBR tabs to show the group members.
User Groups pop up v44500
For the:

  • Environment Name and Environment Group columns under the TEBR and TECR tabs, and the
  • Environment Name column under the My Environment Booking tab.

Administrators can prevent users from viewing and booking Environments and Environment Groups outside their Portfolio Association by selecting the My Portfolio Association checkbox for the Restrict Site-Wide View of Environments user permission.

 

Live Search searches for the TECR, TEBR, or My Environment Booking Title.

To use Live Search:

  1. Go to Environment > Requests.
  2. Click the TECR, TEBR, or My Environment Booking tab.
  3. Type your search query into the Live Search field. Your search results will appear as you type.
  4. Press Enter to immediately perform the search.

 

Filter Environment Requests with the Grid Column Selector

The grid column selector is the set of search fields and menus at the top of the data columns, under the column headers.

Only the TECR and the TEBR tabs have a grid column selector.

To filter TECRs or TEBRs on the Environment Requests page:

  1. Go to Environment > Requests.
  2. Click the TECR or TEBR tab.
  3. If the grid column filter is a:
    1. Search field: Type a search term.
    2. Drop-down menu: Click to select a list item.
    3. Combo box: Click to select one or more checkboxes.
    4. Date field: Click the date field, select a date, and click Done.
      Now, the grid column filters for the Type, Assigned To, Status or Environment Group columns are combo boxes. Users can click multiple checkboxes and select multiple items at once.
  4. Press the Enter key to run the filter.

To clear a filter, click the gray cross or select Action > Clear Grid Column Filtering to clear all the filters.

 

Show or Hide Columns using the Grid Column Selector

The Environment Requests page has a number of default columns but it is possible to add more.

Default Grid Views Customization allows administrators to align the grid view setup for new users or for all users.

To show or hide columns using the grid column selector headings:

  1. Hover your mouse cursor over the right-hand side of a header until the header menu button appears.
    Header Menu Button
  2. Click the header menu button and select Columns.

  3. Click to select column checkboxes.

 

Filter Environment Requests with Custom Fields

Users can also filter using their TECR and TEBR custom fields. To add custom field columns to the Environment Requests page:

  1. Go to Environment > Requests.
  2. Select Grid Column Selector from the Action drop-down menu.
  3. Drag and drop custom fields into Selected Columns.
    Fields in Grid Column Selector containing a padlock Padlock Locked Custom Field have been locked by administrators using the TECR or TEBR Custom Fields. Fields can also be made uneditable or hidden entirely by administrators using these customizations.
  4. Click Save & Close.
    The selected custom fields will appear as new columns to the right of the Status Column.

 

What the Availability Options under My Environment Booking Tab Mean

There are four options in the Availability column in the My Environment Booking tab

These options mean the Environment:

  • None: Has the This is a Shared Environment checkbox selected. The Environment can be booked multiple times simultaneously.
  • Available: Is booked.
  • Conflicting: Has been booked more than once by TEBR or Release for overlapping time periods.
  • In Use: There are two ways an Environment can be “In Use”.
    • The Environment has the Any booking will be automatically approved checkbox selected.
    • The booking has been manually approved.

 

Use Query Builder

Query Builder allows users to create and save their own private searches and use public searches. (Users must have the Create/Delete Environment Public Query Builder user permission to create, edit or delete public queries.)

Click the right side Query Builder buttonGrid column filter button to open the quick access menu, which lists private and public queries.

To use Query Builder, click the funnel-shaped button  on the Environment Requests page. See Manage Query Builder for more information.

 

 

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Updated on November 4, 2020

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