I’ve described in one of my previous posts (very shortly) the main ideas behind DevOps. DevOps is about improving the collaboration between the traditionally soiled development and operations functions. DevOps is all about trust, communication, and the merging of two different disciplines inside IT. On one side, we have developers and on the other side, we have operations. DevOps is an extension of Agile software development principles–allowing us to build, deploy, and change our software with accelerated delivery cycle times.
Part 1: What is DevOps?
Traditional development and operations teams worked in a way that the development team created a solution for production and when it was finished they handed it over to the operations team. The operations team then started with preparation to implement the project in the production environment and manually changed the configuration files and other data in order to comply for deployment. This caused a lot of duplication and issues which were very hard to resolve due to different files and environments.
DevOps is a software development method that stresses communication, collaboration, and integration between software developers and information technology (IT) professionals in order to enable the rapid evolution of products and services and lower the risk, enhance quality across the portfolio, and reduce costs.
DevOps integration targets product delivery, quality testing, feature development, and maintenance releases in order to improve reliability and security and faster development and deployment cycles. The adoption of DevOps is being motivated by following factors:
- The use of Agile and other development operations.
- The requirement for an expanded rate of production releases from application and business stakeholders.
- The extensive possibility of visualized and cloud infrastructure from internal and external providers.
- The enlarged usage of data center automation and configuration management tools.
Part 2: Principles of DevOps
One of the commonly cited DevOps principles is infrastructure as a code. Another major principle is also to get fast feedback throughout every phase of the software lifecycle. Feedback helps achieve a higher quality of code and to reduce as much as possible bugs in the production. Moreover, the DevOps practices help to gather data to identify, diagnose, and resolve issues quickly.
- Develop and test in an environment similar to production.
- Frequent build deployment.
- Continuous validation of operation quality.
- Strengthen feedback loops.
Part 3: Why DevOps Exist
There is a gap between Developers and Operations teams. With the implementation of DevOps:
- The close collaboration between developers and operations allows developers to work to understand the impact of code changes.
- Developers' work is done in an environment that is very close to the production environment.
- Developers are focused on the metrics required by the Ops team.
- There is more transparency for Operations on infrastructure needs.
- There is a higher level of automation on deployment.
- The pipeline of Dev–Test–Prod is closely monitored for each deployment with immediate feedback.
- There is better collaboration and communication.
DevOps is helping businesses in a tremendous way. It's bridging the gap between developers' need for change and operations' resist to change and thus creates a smooth path for Continuous Development and Continuous Integration.
You might also be interested in taking a DevOps self-assessment. You can visit Microsoft’s website and gauge your readiness in the seven key DevOps practice areas.