Unraveling the Siloing Issue When Using Argo CD With Other Similar Tools
Learn how to overcome siloing issues when integrating Argo CD with other tools. Discover effective strategies for seamless collaboration.
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A GitOps silo happens when the adoption of GitOps practices leads to isolation within the development and operations processes. This creates a disconnect between teams that should be working together to maximize the benefits of GitOps. It is similar to siloing in DevOps, which is largely viewed as a negative and something organizations should eradicate.
However, there are some misconceptions about this subject, which should not come as a surprise, given how there are different views when it comes to silos. For example, while many would say that DevOps addresses siloing, some argue that there are areas where DevOps can be part of the reason why silos emerge. There are also those who opine that silos are not necessarily an urgent problem and that organizations may not have to spend so much time trying to eliminate them.
That being said, GitOps is steadily gaining popularity in the development community alongside the tools used for continuous delivery and automation such as Argo CD and Flux.
The Myth of Siloing
It is inevitable for different teams to have diverging preferences in the tools they use in an organization. The development team may be more inclined to employ Flux, for example, while those in the operations team may lean towards Argo CD because of its declarative configuration management, multi-environment support, and integration with CI/CD pipelines. Using Argo CD with Helm charts, in particular, allows organizations to maintain configurations more easily.
There is nothing out of the ordinary in this. Different teams should have the freedom to use the tools they prefer. However, this has led to worries over the possibility of siloing. The use of Argo CD and Flux, two of the most popular GitOps platforms, can create separate practices that may make synchronization between different teams not as easy as organizations want it.
In GitOps, the goal is to use Git as the only source of truth when it comes to application and infrastructure configuration. Argo CD, Flux, and other similar automation tools are employed to continuously sync the system state with the intended state indicated in the Git repository. Certainly, synchronization would be much easier if the same tool was used by different teams. Still, it is possible to synchronize states even if different tools are used.
Of course, silos are not completely inevitable but harmonious integration is definitely doable with proper implementation and a well-defined GitOps workflow. GitOps tools designed with traceability, transparency, and collaboration in mind allow organizations to pursue GitOps without any team getting isolated. They can unify teams around common practices towards efficient software delivery.
Harmonious Integration: The Argo CD and Flux Example
To emphasize, the harmonious interoperation between teams under GitOps does not happen automatically. Bringing together Argo CD and Flux, in particular, involves some crucial steps.
One of the essential steps is the careful assessment of the specific requirements and workflows of every team. It is important to evaluate the needs of the processes to be undertaken and have a thorough understanding of how tasks proceed in order to strategically plan the integration of separate tools and support collaboration.
Next, it is important to take advantage of readily available functions in the tools being used. In the case of integrating teams that use Argo CD and Flux, there is the advantage of drawing history from Git to make it easy to audit the change history. This allows quick rollbacks to previously properly working versions of software to resolve issues before a breaking change is implemented.
The workflows and extensions of Argo CD and Flux are different, but this does not preclude integration. There are ways to get around this obstacle. Using the open-source tool called Flamingo, which is a Flux subsystem created for Argo, makes it possible to align workflows and data. Flamingo allows teams to achieve a smooth GitOps experience when working with Kubernetes clusters.
Argo CD Advantages
Argo CD is highly compatible with GitOps because it is in line with the GitOps pattern. It is also built with an emphasis on the declarative infrastructure and a version control system that makes it easy to revert back to working older versions of software whenever unresolvable problems are encountered.
These advantages align with the need to ascertain that configurations are applied under a version-controlled regime. As Argo CD automates the process of deploying desired states in the intended environments, it also keeps track of updates to various elements including tags and branches. Argo CD is designed to synchronize declarative configurations that are maintained in Git. It plays a vital role in the GitOps workflow.
Favoring better collaboration between teams and individual team members, Argo CD also establishes a unified interface for the management of configuration deployments. It provides teams with an easy way to examine activities and collaborate on code changes via Git pull requests. As mentioned, it is built with transparency, traceability, and collaboration in mind.
Argo CD is an excellent choice for declarative configuration management because it enables teams to set the desired state of their applications and infrastructure. It takes away the involvement of manual actions in configuration deployment, which significantly gets rid of configuration drift. It automatically syncs a cluster’s state with what the declared configuration indicates. This means consistent deployment especially when dealing with multiple environments.
It also contributes to the building of a cohesive software pipeline as it integrates seamlessly with other GitOps tools. It works well with monitoring tools, CI/CD systems, and other development and operations tools.
Supporting Extensibility and Team Effort
Concerns of siloing should not be associated with Argo CD, especially when it is used with Flux and other popular GitOps automation tools. It does not isolate GitOps practices. Rather, it can be a useful aid in enhancing them. Argo CD facilitates collaboration with its robust automation functions, the ability to integrate with other tools, and support for customization and (function) extension to address specific needs.
Nothing is a walk in the park with GitOps automation and continuous delivery, though. Argo CD has to be implemented correctly in accordance with an organization’s specific needs. It is not an out-of-the-box automation solution that does everything on its own, so it is important to understand it carefully and make the most of its functions.
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