You may have heard this buzzword “DevOps”
(development and operations) in recent time. Everyone is talking about it, but it is also one of the most overused and misunderstood terms. For some, the word itself is intimidating. Through this blog, I’ll try to explain – what DevOps is and why is it important testtest testtest.
With the adoption of Agile, there have been tremendous changes in Software delivery approaches in IT. IBM defines DevOps as “an approach based on lean and agile principles in which business owners and the development, operations, and quality assurance teams collaborate to deliver software in a continuous manner that enables the business to more quickly seize market opportunities and reduce the time to include customer feedback”
. Today, enterprise applications are very diverse, most include multiple technologies targeting different end-user devices that only a DevOps approach will be successful in dealing with such complexities.
Most organizations are striving to create innovative and engaging applications or services that solve problems at large scale. As these applications are used directly by end users, there is an intense focus on user experience, agility, and speed of delivery — in other words, a DevOps approach, providing business value to customers in an efficient manner and capturing feedback as customers engage with the capability.
DevOps approach focusses on and improves following areas –
A. Enhanced customer experience
A business must deliver a differentiated and engaging user experience to build customer loyalty and increase market share. To deliver this experience, it must continuously obtain customer feedback and respond to it in an agile manner.
B. Increased capacity to innovate
Modern organizations use lean thinking approaches to increase their capacity to innovate. DevOps approach focuses on reducing unnecessary overhead, rework, and over-production. This allows shifting resources to higher-value activities.
C. Faster time to value
The goal of DevOps is to deliver the value faster and more efficiently. Achieving Speed-to-value involves developing a culture, practices, and automation that allows for fast, efficient, and reliable software delivery through to production. DevOps, when adopted as a business capability, provides the tools required to facilitate efficient release planning, predictability, and success.
The DevOps movement has produced several principles that are continuing to evolve. All these principles, however, take a holistic approach to DevOps, and organizations of all sizes can adopt them. Some principles that Magicbox Team () at Magic Software are following include –
A. Testing against production-like systems
From the beginning to test the application, QA teams are provided production like environment, so that they can see how the application behaves and performs well before it’s ready for deployment. It addresses two major potential challenges.
B. Being Continuous
- First, it allows the application to be tested in an environment that’s close to the actual production environment the application will be delivered to;
- Second, it allows for the application delivery processes themselves to be tested and validated upfront.
Automation has become essential to eliminate processes that are repetitive and frequent. Automation scripts are created and are scheduled to run as and when required. MagicBox team is using Jenkins, most reliable and popular tool for continuous and automated deployment as well as for testing. Frequent deployments also allow teams to test the deployment processes themselves, thereby lowering the risk of deployment failures at release time. For integrating code into the team, the team is using Gitlab, one of most trusted SCM tool.
C. Using Cloud platform as IaaS
Public cloud model solved the biggest bottleneck of organizations in need of production-like environment for development and testing. DevOps with Cloud act as a catalyst for the organization that adopts cloud because of the flexibility, resilience, agility, and the services a cloud platform brings. MagicBox team leveraged cloud platform, AWS from the initial stage of our application. “Pay per usage” model and power of coding our own infrastructure have been crucial for us. From an automation perspective, deployment can be done as needed enabling reliable and fast software delivery.
D. Monitor and validate operational quality
has focussed typically on providing best quality product to all the customers. The team performs automated load test on staging environment and application monitoring tools capture metrics in real time. These metrics are used to gain system-wide visibility into resource utilization, application performance, and operational health. Amazon CloudWatch, a monitoring service by AWS and Sensu is used to collect and track metrics, collect and monitor log files, set alarms, and automatically react to changes in our AWS resources.
Amazon CloudWatch can monitor AWS resources such as EC2 instances, Elastic Load Balancer, and RDS DB instances.These metrics are captured in a format that all team can understand and use.
The capabilities that make up DevOps are a broad set that spans the software delivery life cycle. Where an organization starts with DevOps depends on its business objectives and goals — what challenges it is trying to address and what gaps in its software delivery capabilities need to be filled.
Although the name DevOps suggests development-and-operations-based capabilities, DevOps is an enterprise capability that spans all stakeholders in an organization. Because DevOps improves the way a business delivers value to its customers and partners, it’s an essential business process, not just an IT capability. DevOps isn’t the goal, it helps you reach your goals.