What is DevOps?
DevOps is a culture which promotes collaboration between Development and Operations Team to deploy code to production faster in an automated & repeatable way. The word 'DevOps' is a combination of two words 'development' and 'operations.'
DevOps helps to increases an organization's speed to deliver applications and services. It allows organizations to serve their customers better and compete more strongly in the market.
In simple words, DevOps can be defined as an alignment of development and IT operations with better communication and collaboration.
Why is DevOps is Needed?
• Before DevOps, the development and operation team worked in complete isolation.
• Testing and Deployment were isolated activities done after design-build. Hence they consumed more time than actual build cycles.
• Without using DevOps, team members are spending a large amount of their time in testing, deploying, and designing instead of building the project.
• Manual code deployment leads to human errors in production
• Coding & operation teams have their separate timelines and are not in synch causing further delays.
There is a demand to increase the rate of software delivery by business stakeholders. As per Forrester Consulting Study, Only 17% of teams can use delivery software fast enough. This proves the pain point.
Why is DevOps used?
DevOps allows Agile Development Teams to implement Continuous Integration and Continuous Delivery. This helps them to launch products faster into the market.
Other Important reasons are:
1. Predictability: DevOps offers significantly lower failure rate of new releases
2. Reproducibility: Version everything so that earlier version can be restored anytime.
3. Maintainability: Effortless process of recovery in the event of a new release crashing or disabling the current system.
4. Time to market: DevOps reduces the time to market up to 50% through streamlined software delivery. This is particularly the case for digital and mobile applications.
5. Greater Quality: DevOps helps the team to provide improved quality of application development as it incorporates infrastructure issues.
6. Reduced Risk: DevOps incorporates security aspects in the software delivery lifecycle. It helps in reduction of defects across the lifecycle.
7. Resiliency: The Operational state of the software system is more stable, secure, and changes are auditable.
8. Cost Efficiency: DevOps offers cost efficiency in the software development process which is always an aspiration of IT companies' management.
9. Breaks larger code base into small pieces: DevOps is based on the agile programming method. Therefore, it allows breaking larger code bases into smaller and manageable chunks.
When to adopt DevOps?
DevOps should be used for large distributed applications such as eCommerce sites or applications hosted on a cloud platform.
When not to adopt DevOps?
It should not be used in a mission-critical application like bank, power and other sensitive data sites. Such applications need strict access controls on the production environment, a detailed change management policy, access control policy to the data centers.
DevOps is deep integration between development and operations. Understanding DevOps is not possible without knowing DevOps lifecycle.
Here is a brief information about the Continuous DevOps life-cycle:
In this DevOps stage the development of software takes place constantly. In this phase, the entire development process is separated into small development cycles. This benefits DevOps team to speed up software development and delivery process.
QA team use tools like Selenium to identify and fix bugs in the new piece of code.
In this stage, new functionality is integrated with the prevailing code, and testing takes place. Continuous development is only possible due to continuous integration and testing.
In this phase, the deployment process takes place continuously. It is performed in such a manner that any changes made any time in the code, should not affect the functioning of high traffic website.
In this phase, operation team will take care of the inappropriate system behavior or bugs which are found in production.
Here, are six principles which are essential when adopting DevOps:
1. Customer-Centric Action: DevOps team must take customer-centric action for that they should constantly invest in products and services.
2. End-To-End Responsibility: The DevOps team need to provide performance support until they become end-of-life. This enhances the level of responsibility and the quality of the products engineered.
3. Continuous Improvement: DevOps culture focuses on continuous improvement to minimize waste. It continuously speeds up the improvement of product or services offered.
4. Automate everything: Automation is a vital principle of DevOps process. This is not only for the software development but also for the entire infrastructure landscape.
5. Work as one team: In the DevOps culture role of the designer, developer, and tester are already defined. All they needed to do is work as one team with complete collaboration.
6. Monitor and test everything: It is very important for DevOps team to have a robust monitoring and testing procedures.
DevOps Automation Tools
It is vital to automate all the testing processes and configure them to achieve speed and agility. This process is known as DevOps automation.
The difficulty faced in large DevOps Team that maintain large huge IT infrastructure can be classified briefly into six different categories.
Let's see a few tools in each of these categories and how they solve the pain points–
Amazon Web Services (AWS): Being cloud service you do not need to be physically present in the data center. Also, they are easy to scale on-demand. There are no up-front hardware costs. It can be configured to provision more servers based on traffic automatically.
Chef: It is a useful DevOps tool for achieving speed, scale, and consistency. It can be used to ease out complex tasks and perform configuration management. With this tool, DevOps team can avoid making changes across ten thousand servers. Instead, they need to make changes in one place which is automatically reflected in other servers.
Jenkins: This tool facilitates continuous integration and testing. It helps to integrate project changes more easily by quickly finding issues as soon as a built is deployed.
Splunk: This is a tool solves the issues like aggregating, storing, and analyzing all logs in one place.
App Dynamic: It is DevOps tool which offers real-time performance monitoring. The data collected by this tool helps developers to debug when issues occur.
Nagios: It is also important to make sure people are notified when infrastructure and related services go down. Nagios is one such tool for this purpose which helps DevOps teams to find and correct problems.