In recent years, alternative project management methodologies have emerged to optimize project management in different disciplines. In the world of software development, there is one that is gaining strength, and it is called DevOps. Digital innovation methods and methodologies such as Continuous Distribution or agile growth are typically aligned with it.
What is DevOps?
DevOps refers to software implementations in which processes and methods are used, which allow closer collaboration and communication between the departments in charge. This approach suggests that the line that divided operations development has been removed in the enterprise software industry.
Some years ago, traditional organizations managed their departments individually and separately, which lacked integration in IT areas. That is why DevOps appears, whose job is to develop and implement software collaboratively.
Will implementing DevOps benefit the company?
Yes, and the reason is simple: if you consider that the organization requires significant reform of operations and strategy, adopting new technologies will help you find true approaches that improve the way of operating and will be aligned with the specific need of the business.
In this way, if you integrate a productive and collaborative methodology, it will be one of the first steps to develop new business cases. Development Operations or DevOps’ identifies the partnership between development and operations departments. This union proposes to enhance their collaboration’s effectiveness, reducing the risk of production involved with repeated shifts or deliveries in development.
Imagine that in the development of software solutions, the operations did not communicate with the development. Although it is easy to imagine because it is very frequent, you should not think that this is happening in your company. Sometimes, you should only create applications, but in reality, you should go further: creating truly disruptive and innovative services that solve business problems.
Many companies today are not successful with their software projects, and it all ultimately has to do with how the software is being delivered and developed.
There are several common DevOps methods that organizations use to speed up and improve product development and releases. They are typically presented as software development practices and methodologies. Among the most popular are Scrum, Kanban, and Agile:
- Scrum. Scrum defines how the team members must collaborate to achieve together to accelerate development projects and quality control. Scrum practices include core workflows and specific terminology.
- Kanban. Kanban originated from the efficiencies that were achieved at the Toyota factory. Kanban prescribes that the “work in progress” (WIP) status of a software project must be controlled on a Kanban board.
- Agile. Older Agile software development methods continue to influence DevOps tools and practices heavily. Many of these methods, including Scrum and Kanban, have incorporated elements of Agile programming. Some of these practices are associated with increased responsiveness to continual changes in requirements and needs, documentation requirements in the form of case studies, holding daily meetings to catch up, and incorporating ongoing communication with clients to know their opinions. Agile also stipulates shorter software development cycles instead of traditional ‘cascade’ development methods that stretch over time
Followers of DevOps practices often incorporate some tools into their particular DevOps “toolchain” perfectly suited to these methods. These tools aim to try to optimize, shorten, and automate the various stages of the software creation (or “pipeline”) workflow. Many of these tools also promote the core principles of DevOps, such as automation, collaboration, and integration between development and operations teams. Here is an example of tools used at various stages of the DevOps cycle.
- Planning. In this phase, business requirements and values are defined. Some sample tools are Jira or Git, with which you can track known issues and carry out project management.
- Coding. This phase involves designing the software and creating the code. Some sample tools are GitHub, GitLab, Bitbucket, or Stash.
- Believe. In this phase, software builds and versions are managed, and automated tools help compile and create code packages for later release for production. Source code repositories or package repositories are used that also “package” the infrastructure needed for the product launch. Some sample tools are Docker, Ansible, Puppet, Chef, Gradle, Maven.
- Proof. This phase includes continuous testing (manual or automated) to ensure the quality of the programming. Some sample tools are JUnit, Codeception, Selenium, Vagrant, TestNG.
- Startup. In this phase, tools are used to help manage, coordinate, schedule, and automate product versions’ production tasks. Some sample tools are Puppet, Chef, Ansible, Jenkins, Kubernetes, OpenShift, OpenStack, Docker, or Jira.
- Operational. In this phase, the software is managed during its production. Some sample tools are Ansible, Puppet, PowerShell, Chef, Salt, or Otter.
- Supervise. In this phase, information is identified and collected about problems in a specific software version in production. Some sample tools are New Relic, Datadog, Grafana, Wireshark, Splunk, Nagios, or Slack.
DevOps activities reflect the principle of continual automation and enhancement. These practices include the following:
- Continuous development. This practice covers the planning and coding phases of the DevOps cycle. It can also include version control mechanisms.
- Carrying out continuous tests. This practice incorporates continuous automated and pre-scheduled code tests performed as the application code is being created or updated. Thanks to these tests, the code moves earlier to the production phase.
- Continuous integration (CI). This lab combines configuration management (CM) tools with other development and testing tools to see how much of the code you’re creating is ready for production. To do this, there must be a fluid exchange of information between the testing and development phases to identify and resolve problems in the code quickly.
- Continuous delivery. This practice automates the introduction of code changes to move to a pre-production or staging environment after testing. A staff member could then decide whether to promote these code changes to production.
- Continuous start-up (CD). As with continuous delivery, this practice automates the release of new or changed code to production. A company that implements continuous roll-out might release changes to code or features multiple times a day. Container technologies, such as Docker and Kubernetes, enable this continuous startup phase to maintain code consistency across different startup platforms and environments.
- Continuous monitoring. This practice involves continuous monitoring of the code in the production phase and the underlying infrastructure that supports it. A feedback loop in which errors or problems are reported could return to the development phase.
- Infrastructure as code. This practice can be used during various DevOps phases to automate the provisioning of the infrastructure needed to publish the software. Developers add infrastructure “code” from current development tools. For example, developers could create a storage volume on-demand from Docker, Kubernetes, or OpenShift. Thanks to this practice, operations teams can also monitor environment configurations, record changes, and simplify configurations’ rollback.
Advantages of DevOps
DevOps supporters describe several technical and business benefits that ultimately lead to more satisfied customers. Some of the benefits of DevOps include the following:
- Better and faster product delivery
- Solve problems in less time and with less complexity
- Better scalability and availability
- More stable operating environments
- Better use of resources
- Greater automation
- Greater visibility of system results
- Greater innovation
Is DevOps for me?
You can answer the question yourself with the following questions: Do you want to deliver changes quickly if you are a developer? Well, there you can know about one thing. We also answer you: yes, developers always want to deliver improvements as quickly as possible. If you are from the operations part, obtaining reliability and stability is also one, or should be one of your priorities.
This is how we again agree with Happiest Minds, and it is for a simple reason: he considers this to be a wall of confusion between development and operations. One that exists not only in the mindset of the two teams but also with the tools they use. For example, development teams use some tools and operation uses others to do the same.
In this way, DevOps is the right methodology to break the barrier between development and operations teams, unifying operations first for better and faster results. So if you want to get a collaborative job, we consider yes, if it is for you.
TechSur and DevOps
- TechSur helps improve business outcomes with DevOps – Operations teams deliver automated infrastructure with less engineering burden, and engineers can get their jobs done in predictable and reliable environments with less friction.
- TechSur makes it easier for developers and test, quality, and operations teams to consume infrastructure resources (for example, with persistent storage volumes) in the form of code. All this from tools that are common in the DevOps pipeline.