The software development process has changed drastically over the last 10 years. DevOps has appropriated the planet, and as more Development and IT teams work in the harmony, the more these agile companies add the praises of continuous deployment.
What is DevOps?
DevOps is formed by the combination of 2 words “development” and “operations.” It was coined by Patrick Debois, a DevOps expert, who came up with this term in 2009 and it stuck ever since. After this term was coined many people used to say that it brought a complete change in IT industry and DevOps lead that change. DevOps is an umbrella term that describes the operation of the team that gets together throughout a whole programming production process — from the design to development stages. It’s a mix of tools and philosophies that increase a team’s capability to give results at high efficiency.
DevOps programmers mostly operate on conventional infrastructure management and software development processes. DevOps tends to take a redefined approach when it comes to software development.
Why DevOps Really Matters
Using DevOps practices comes with a variety of advantages, some of which — including greater efficiency, security, and organizational collaboration — have already been articulated. The 2017 State of DevOps Report quantifies this increase in efficiency, reporting that high-performing organizations employing DevOps practices spend 21 percent less time on unplanned work and rework, and 44 percent longer on new work.
More generally speaking, successfully implementing DevOps practices can have a great impact on the company by improving its efficiency and execution.
DevOps in Depth
While there’s is no exact definition of DevOps, a number of general principles are often found within The Agile Manifesto. Moreover, at the core of any successful strategy, is what’s referred to as the “DevOps Trinity”:
- People and Culture — This means breaking down the traditional tank between teams in the organization and working together towards a common goal. The goal is to give quality software to the customer as quickly as possible.
- Processes and Practices — Agile and DevOps go hand in hand. By adopting Agile, Scrum, plus automation, organizations can streamline processes in predictable and repeatable ways.
- Tools and Technologies — Without the right tools and technologies in place, DevOps is not a sustainable model. These enable automation, continuous integration, configuration management, testing, packaging, releasing, and monitoring.
What It’s Like to Work With DevOps
If you’ve never worked in DevOps before, you’ll be curious about what a typical programming process is like when using a DevOps approach for software development.
Automation is a critical component of DevOps. DevOps users normally depend upon various tools for various tasks and operations throughout the software development process or cycle. But DevOps is not just a collection tool; this is only a chunk of how the DevOps process works.
Since DevOps uses an Agile approach, DevOps users are going to be integrating their work with the work of other programmers very frequently. This is often continuous and will help in revealing any problems at an early stage. DevOps users also continuously test their code to avoid unnecessarily long and drawn-out QA sessions with various automation tools. Doing so helps them cut down on project time tremendously.
As a DevOps user, it’s also important to understand that working entirely on your own and without fully embracing teamwork goes against what DevOps is all about. The success of DevOps relies heavily on collaboration between all team members involved during a particular project.
After understanding what is DevOps, let us now see why to go for DevOps.
Teams who work on a project with a DevOps approach tend to finish their projects much faster. There are often fewer miscommunications, and improvements and other needed changes are done very quickly. The DevOps approach encourages more and more collaboration between the operations and development teams, and everyone’s objectives are more aligned. While not using a DevOps approach, teams may experience delays or take a longer time to finish the project, and they are just not as efficient overall.
Who Uses DevOps?
Nowadays it is not only used by software developers and operators; many other people also end up in the DevOps process in some way. Project managers, test engineers, and system administrators are some professionals who may find themselves involved in the DevOps process. Even executives may be involved in the DevOps process somehow, or at the very least, fully embrace this approach due to the efficient results that are delivered.
Your DevOps Toolkit
In addition to the above-mentioned cultural shift — going from a company that silos software developers and infrastructure experts to one that embraces their collaboration — companies need to understand such specific practices and tools that are crucial to or crucial for DevOps. Below are 3 of the most crucial of such practices:
Automation: Increased efficiency is central to DevOps, and this is significantly achieved through automating a range of relatively slow processes in software development and infrastructure maintenance. One specific example that Amazon cites is the practice of automatically sending out relatively small but frequent software updates. This practice takes the onus off of systems administrators, who might otherwise have to perform these updates manually. As Amazon notes, this practice also has the benefit of de-risking software deployment by enabling administrators to more easily catch and fix bugs if they occur. Automation is a cornerstone of DevOps and is crucial to the other DevOps practices discussed below.
Continuous Integration: On a fundamental level, DevOps is about the close collaboration between engineers and, further, entire teams. Continuous Integration refers to the practice of engineers sharing and merging code in a central location. As Amazon explains, “In the past, developers on a team might work in isolation for an extended period of time and only attempt to merge their changes… once their work was completed.” Through Continuous Integration, engineers can more efficiently collaborate and avoid the bottlenecks associated with developing and integrating their code.
Continuous Delivery: Continuous Delivery refers to the practice of automatically delivering and implementing software product changes as they’re made. In other words, Continuous Delivery is enabled by Continuous Integration, given that changes to code can only be effectively pushed to the entire system if the code is already housed in a central place. Automation is also crucial to Continuous Delivery. Indeed, the aforementioned example of sending small, frequent systems updates can also be thought of as an example of Continuous Delivery. Continuous Delivery enables organizations to implement changes and improvements quickly, and it allows engineers to focus their time more efficiently on other, complex issues.
DevOps is helping businesses in an enormous way. It’s bridging the gap between the developers’ need for change and the operations’ resistance to change and thus creates a smooth path for Continuous Development and Continuous Integration.