Software provider SolarWinds unveils its new software development system

Sudhakar Ramakrishna, President and Chief Executive Officer at SolarWinds

SolarWinds (NYSE:SWI), a provider of simple, powerful, and secure IT management software, unveils its new Next-Generation Build System, a transformational model for software development. The new software build process is a key component of the firm’s Secure by Design initiative to make SolarWinds a model for enterprise software security.

What does Next-Generation Build System do?

The software development and build process improvements were made in an accelerated timeline over the past year in response to the highly sophisticated and devastating SUNBURST cyberattack, which targeted SolarWinds and other technology companies.

The Next-Generation Build System includes both new software development practices and technology to strengthen the integrity of the build environment. This consists of the first-of-its-kind “parallel build” process, where the development of SolarWinds® software takes place through multiple highly secure duplicate paths to establish a basis for integrity checks.

Because the software build process at SolarWinds used at the time of the SUNBURST attack is common throughout the tech industry, SolarWinds is releasing components of the new build system as open-source software, enabling other firms to benefit from the company’s learnings and help establish a new industry standard for secure software development.

How can the new software be of use to the industry?

“Communicating transparently and collaborating within the industry is the only way to effectively protect our shared cyber infrastructure. Our Secure by Design initiative is intended to set a new standard in software supply chain security via innovations in build systems and build processes. We believe our customers, peers, and the broader industry can also benefit from our practices,” said Sudhakar Ramakrishna, president and CEO, SolarWinds.

SolarWinds aligned the new system with four key tenets of Secure by Design principles:

  • Dynamic operations: Building only short-term software build environments that self-destruct after completing a specific task.
  • Systematic build products: Ensuring build products can be made deterministically so any newly created byproducts will always have identical, secure components.
  • Simultaneous build process: Creating software development byproducts, like data models, in parallel to establish a basis for detecting unexpected modifications to the products.
  • Detailed records: Tracking every software build step for complete traceability and permanent proof of record that can be refeerenced in the future.