How do you go about reducing the time it takes to commit a change to a system and that change then being placed into normal production, all while ensuring high quality? This is a challenge that developers have fought with for years and DevOps is their answer to it.
DevOps is an all-encompassing term that describes practices which combine both the software development side of things and IT operations to shorten the software development life cycle.
DevOps borrows many of its aspects from the Agile methodology and can thus be viewed as being complementary with Agile software development.
Developers have intended DevOps to be a cross-functional way of working. Those who adhere to the DevOps methodology use different sets of tools that are called toolchains instead of using a single tool.
These toolchains relate to coding, building, testing, etc and are reflective of the important aspects of the development and delivery process.
The ultimate aim of DevOps is to speed up the entire delivery pipeline. This means that there should be a higher deployment frequency for the product in addition to a faster time to market while ensuring lower rate of failure for new releases.
What are DevOps technologies?
There are many DevOps technologies or tools that play a vital role in the implementation of this process. These tools help automate the process and increase the collaboration between software developers and IT operations managers.
There can be no single tool that can serve as a one-stop solution for a full-fledged DevOps adoption. Developers need to rely on a variety of DevOps technologies that are suited for every specific requirement.
These technologies allow for effective sharing and exchange of information, resources, and technical knowledge between developers, operations managers, and security teams to ensure a high quality output for the product.
Automation is prioritized in DevOps, and as such, there are many automation tools that can integrate that in the development process. Tools are also available for measuring and auditing processes, achieving continuous delivery and continuous integration as well as tools for optimization.
DevOps as a service is a new trend that's quickly gaining ground in the industry. What it effectively does is move the collaboration between the development and the operations teams to the cloud.
This allows for many of the processes to be automated through the use of stackable virtual development tools.
As organizations leverage DevOps and begin their cloud migration, the tools that they use to build, test, and deploy apps will move to the cloud as well. This essentially makes continuous delivery a managed service.
DevOps-as-a-Service is thus the migration of tools and processes that are used for continuous delivery to a hosted virtual platform.
This limits the delivery pipeline to a single site where the developers, operations managers, and testers can collaborate more effectively since much of the process is now automated.
What tools are used in DevOps?
DevOps tools can be best described as being the specific technical implementations of DevOps practices. Testing and automation tools are used to reduce the need of human interaction for automated testing when deploying a new version or application.
Cloud vendors provide virtual infrastructures which can be used to speed up the access to resources so that the development can be sped up. This also helps with increasing scalability for the application. They can be combined with automation tools to automate server configuration as well.
There are also continuous deployment tools that allow for automatic deployment and also make the software more reliable. To help with continuous integration, there are test and built tools that can automate repeated tasks that are part of the development process.
Last but not the least, security tools help keep the applications safe from threats. They enable developers to release new applications faster with having to work on the security aspect of each individual app.
These tools can detect potential security problems and send an alert so that the problem can be fixed before any disruption is caused.
The 5 best DevOps tools for software development
Containerization has gained popularity over the past year because of the agility and flexibility that it provides. Kubernetes is the container orchestration platform that's widely being used, it was developed by Google engineers as a solution for managing containers at scale.
With Kubernetes, the management of hundreds of containers can be automated. The containers can be deployed to a cluster of computers which means that containerized apps don't have to be deployed to a single machine.
Jenkins is a popular go-to DevOps automation tool that enables developers to automate different stages of their delivery pipeline. One major reason why this DevOps tool is so popular is because of its widespread support for plugins.
There are more than 1,000 plugins on offer which enables Jenkins to integrate with almost all commonly used DevOps tools like Kubernetes, Docker, and Puppet. Jenkins runs out-of-the-box on Linux, Windows, and macOS.
Puppet is used for cross-platform configuration management. It enables developers to manage their infrastructure as code, automating the process so that they can deploy software quickly and securely.
Using Puppet Enterprise, developers can work across multiple teams and manage a significant number of resources. There are more than 5,000 modules available for Puppet and it supports integration with many widely used DevOps tools.
For distributed source code management, the DevOps industry relies on Git. It's the preferred tool of remote teams and open source contributors as it allows them to track the development progress.
It can save different versions of the source code so developers can easily revert back to an earlier version if need be. There's great potential for experimentation with this tool as it allows developers to create separate branches and only merge the new features when they're ready to be deployed.
Raygun is an exceptional DevOps tool used for error monitoring and crash reporting. It supports application performance management as well, providing developers with the ability to diagnose performance issues and then helping them track the issues back to the precise function, API call or line of code.
Raygun's powerful error management workflow integrates well with the application performance management tool as it can automatically identify the highest priority problems and create issues for the developer.
How DevOps can change your business technology
Businesses stand to gain a lot from incorporating DevOps practices. They can have a single team of cross-functional members that all work in collaboration to deliver results faster while ensuring the highest levels of functionality and innovation.
DevOps can streamline the organization's entire software process to make it more dynamic, flexible, and effective. This is the need of the hour particularly for businesses that are expanding and are seeing their resources spiral out of control.
The speed of delivery that it enables is perhaps one of the biggest advantages of the DevOps approach. Each iteration can be sent out much faster while minimizing the risk of breaking things even when new releases are being sent out quickly.
DevOps also allows for better scalability so that when the organization's needs grow, it's possible to efficiently scale up the resources to meet business objectives.
Find a DevOps-friendly software developer for your business
There’s a reason why many businesses are now adopting a DevOps approach for their software development lifecycle. They appreciate the agility and scalability that it offers. However, many find it difficult to make the switch, particularly if they don’t have an in-house development team.
Setting up your own in-house team can be a very costly affair. It’s also very time-consuming since you have to first go out and find the right talent. Then it’s a matter of bringing them onboard with enough perks and privileges that are comparable to what they can get in the marketplace.
This in itself rules out the option for many startup companies that just don’t have the financial runway to do something like that.
That's not to say it's not possible to go with the DevOps approach unless you have a fully staffed internal software development team.
You can easily outsource the job to skilled experts who can provide an end-to-end solution, taking care of the entire project to make sure that everything goes smoothly.
This is where we at Zibtek come in. Zibtek is one of the leading software development firms in the world with offices in Salt Lake City, Utah. We also manage a truly global team of developers from our offices in the United States. Our team has the skills, experience, and focus required to deliver exceptional custom software.
We have a team of highly skilled DevOps professionals that have experience working on projects for both Fortune 500 companies and startups alike.
They have implemented DevOps strategies across various industries and have witnessed just how beneficial this can be for many different use cases. You can take advantage of this experience as well by reaching out to Zibtek for a consultation. Our team will be happy to chat with you about your options and explain how DevOps can help drive efficiency for your business.