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Edge computing presents complex challenges when managing many sites in geographically displaced locations. Use zero touch provisioning (ZTP) and GitOps to provision and manage sites at the far edge of the network.

Overcoming the challenges of the network far edge

Today, service providers want to deploy their infrastructure at the edge of the network. This presents significant challenges:

  • How do you handle deployments of many edge sites in parallel?

  • What happens when you need to deploy sites in disconnected environments?

  • How do you manage the lifecycle of large fleets of clusters?

Zero touch provisioning (ZTP) and GitOps meets these challenges by allowing you to provision remote edge sites at scale with declarative site definitions and configurations for bare-metal equipment. Template or overlay configurations install OpenShift Container Platform features that are required for CNF workloads. The full lifecycle of installation and upgrades is handled through the ZTP pipeline.

ZTP uses GitOps for infrastructure deployments. With GitOps, you use declarative YAML files and other defined patterns stored in Git repositories. Red Hat Advanced Cluster Management (RHACM) uses your Git repositories to drive the deployment of your infrastructure.

GitOps provides traceability, role-based access control (RBAC), and a single source of truth for the desired state of each site. Scalability issues are addressed by Git methodologies and event driven operations through webhooks.

You start the ZTP workflow by creating declarative site definition and configuration custom resources (CRs) that the ZTP pipeline delivers to the edge nodes.

The following diagram shows how ZTP works within the far edge framework.