19 Oct 2021
7 min read
DevOps means development and operations. It is a practice that aims to merge development, QA, and operations (deployment and integration) into a single, continuous set of processes. This methodology is a natural extension of Agile and continuous delivery approaches.
By embracing DevOps, companies gain three fundamental benefits that cover development’s technical, business, and cultural aspects.
Acceleration and improvement of product quality
DevOps accelerates product release by introducing continuous delivery, encouraging faster feedback, and enabling developers to fix system bugs early. By practising DevOps, the team can focus on product quality and automate several processes.
Faster responsiveness to user needs
A team can react more quickly to user change requests with DevOps, adding new features and updating existing ones. As a result, time-to-market and value delivery rates increase.
A better working environment
DevOps principles and practices enable better communication between team members, as well as increased productivity and agility. Teams that practice DevOps are seen as more productive and more versatile. The members of a DevOps team, both those who develop and those who operate, act in concert.
These benefits can only be achieved if one understands that DevOps is not just a set of actions but a philosophy that promotes communication between cross-functional teams. More importantly, it doesn’t require substantial technical changes, as the focus is on changing how people work. All success depends on adhering to DevOps principles.
Using version control repeatedly, configuration management allows you to make and manage changes to the software. Configuration management has two components:
Using version control software like Git: A strategy involving standard code repository management, like the Feature branch workflow or the Gitflow workflow.
Continuous integration: The code is integrated into a shared repository. It allows developers to get instant feedback on its success in real-time. It is the foundation of continuous delivery and continuous deployment practices.
Automated testing advises the use of specialized software for testing. It allows you to monitor the execution of software tests and compare the results. Performing repetitive tests manually is a tedious task. Automated tests are specific to each program and can be performed based on seven elements:
Entire physical or virtual environments can be supported by Infrastructure as Code. It includes IT and network infrastructure. It can allow faster recovery in a failure and give the developer the ability to control versions. Chef, Ansible, Puppet, CFEngine, Pulumi, and Terraform are some examples.
For continued development, a series of automated steps can ensure that any source code changes are ready for production as soon as they are released. Construction, testing, and deployment are automated. Lower environments such as QA and UA also follow similar procedures.
It is the end-to-end automation of production deployment. A hybrid approach is advised in this practice, where the automated and manual steps work together. The goal is to deploy the code as soon as it passes the tests.
The teams must constantly monitor the health of the application. Proactively alerting and taking action in key areas of the production environment minimizes the time between identifying and resolving a problem.
From these practices, we can understand that DevOps is a software development culture that favors collaboration, communication, sharing, and openness. Therefore, to adopt DevOps, no technical innovation is necessary.
There is a difference between principles and best practices. Best practices are universal concepts, applicable everywhere. These are more generic, widely accepted quality standards that any industry can apply. Principles, on the other hand, are more product or vision-driven.
Create a collaborative environment
DevOps brings development and operations teams together, which means an atmosphere of collaboration, a unified team that pursues common goals. Therefore, teams are encouraged to communicate, brainstorm, share ideas and solve problems together.
The DevOps team should automate as many processes as possible. Automation can benefit operations like continuous integration / continuous delivery (CI / CD), infrastructure provisioning, security compliance verification testing, functionality testing, and software deployment. In addition, the more automated processes, the safer, faster, and more reliable the product output will be.
Monitor the process continuously.
The DevOps team must implement the CI / CD pipeline and reinforce this process with continuous monitoring. The DevOps team should monitor applications, logs, infrastructure, and systems, staying on top of issues. When the team detects an issue, they can quickly bring the app back to its previous state and resolve the issue. Continuous monitoring also helps identify productivity issues that may be slowing pipeline productivity.
Implement end-to-end accountability
The traditional model of software development gave software developers and operations separate roles. In DevOps, on the other hand, both groups are responsible for the application from start to finish.
Promote continuous improvement
User needs change, technology improves, and governing bodies adopt new regulations. DevOps teams release a solid product and work to improve product performance, compliance, and speed continuously. The release of the final product doesn’t end the story; the team is keeping an eye on the app and making sure it remains relevant in a changing world.
Don’t be afraid to fail. Learn from it
No one likes to fail, of course. But rather than treating failure as a personal blow, teams need to change their attitude and view failure as a chance to learn something. In other words, you have to learn from your mistakes. After all, mistakes are inevitable; you might as well take advantage of them!
Everything revolves around the user.
DevOps teams must deliver a product that meets the needs of the user. DevOps teams should always keep an ear open to the user’s voice as they keep pace with their changing needs.
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