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DevOps: How Does It Work?

We’ve been hearing a lot about DevOps in the IT world lately. The subject is on everyone’s lips: job offers, articles, white papers. Linked to digital transformation and the agile world, DevOps remains poorly understood. So what exactly does DevOps mean? What is it for, and why take a closer look at it? This article help you see things more clearly.

What does DevOps mean? (Definition)

DevOps is the contraction of “development” and “operations.” This term was coined by Patrick Debois, who initially considered the term “Agile Administration System.” It is a way of working where development, IT operations, and security teams come together to build, test an application, and provide regular feedback throughout the software development lifecycle. (SDLC). From culture change to automation with CI/CD, today we’ll see how DevOps teams develop shared context, expertise, tools, and roles to deliver better products. We invite you to consult our DevOps glossary to understand the DevOps movement better.

What is DevOps Culture? (Concept)

We sometimes speak of DevOps “culture” when the change at the organizational and cultural level of a company that adopts this methodology is significant. The DevOps methodology seeks to be more collaborative, increase communication between departments, and ultimately integrate and unify them so that operations are not separated from development. DevOps culture is more agile, delivering faster and better products. Development teams that adopt this methodology are more aligned, less slide, and more involved in the different product lifecycle stages.

What is the CI/CD approach in DevOps?

CI/CD translates to “continuous integration” and “continuous delivery/continuous deployment” in English. We will speak of continuous integration (for CI) and delivery/deployment (for CD). The CI/CD approach offers a faster and more accurate way to combine different people’s work into a cohesive product. In application development and operation (DevOps), CI/CD streamlines application coding, testing, and deployment by giving teams a single repository to store work and automation tools to Combine and test code consistently to ensure it works.

What is SRE (and what are the differences with DevOps?)

Because today it is unthinkable to imagine a business without advanced infrastructure management and IT operations, SRE and DevOps come into play. These two cultures and sets of best practices have gained popularity in computing recently, and the trend seems far from over. However, DevOps and SRE (Site Reliability Engineering) are not aiming for the same thing…

Simply put, DevOps is for writing and deploying code. On the other hand, the SRE is more comprehensive, with the team taking a broader end-user perspective when working on the system. A DevOps team works on a product or application using an agile approach. It builds, tests, deploys and monitors applications with speed, control, and quality. An SRE team regularly provides feedback to the developer team. Their goal is to leverage operations data and software engineering, primarily by automating IT operations tasks, resulting in faster software delivery. On the other hand, a DevOps team’s job is to make the overall organization more efficient and automated.

The goal of SRE is to streamline IT operations using methodologies previously only used by software developers. Site Reliability Engineering aims to keep the application or platform available to customers (it strongly focuses on customer expectations by prioritizing service level agreement parameters, service level indicators, and service level objectives). DevOps, on the other hand, focuses on the overall processes that should result in the successful deployment of a product.

How does DevOps work?

Implementing DevOps isn’t just about the tools; it’s also about how people work and their processes. DevOps breaks down the historical silo between the teams of engineers who create an application or a service and those who are responsible for operating this service in production. Processes and work align with the entire lifecycle of products and services and everything needed to deliver and operate them.

This product-centric view can be based on something as simple as a microservice or on a more complex set of deliverables that make up a release (circumstances and the end customer often make this determination). Over time, the goal is to keep making minor changes and iterate faster.

The new processes and teams leverage maximum automation and technologies that make connecting the end-to-end product lifecycle easier, including the all-important customer-to-team feedback loop.

What are the main advantages of DevOps?

The massive adoption of DevOps practices by enterprises today is driven by the vast number of benefits its adoption brings. Among all these advantages, it seems essential to mention the following:

  • DevOps increases the rate of production and deployment of software developments through production systems known as continuous delivery and deployment, resulting in greater development agility.
  • DevOps provides excellent agility, which results in improved quality through near-continuous product verification from the early stages of development and the reduction of potential errors.
  • DevOps ensures greater security of the applications developed, thanks in particular to the automation of procedures for controlling threats and vulnerabilities.
  • DevOps allows for more flexible delivery and better environmental adaptation than traditional development systems with longer deployment times.

Which companies are affected by DevOps?

Now that we have reviewed the main advantages of the DevOps approach, it is worth asking which companies are likely to be attracted to a DevOps approach.

In general, we can cite:

  • Young companies that want to expand their presence in the Internet market quickly.
  • Companies that want to modernize their current processes and meet the growing demands of their customers
  • Businesses that require high responsiveness in an emergency.
  • Companies that constantly need to adjust their cloud resources according to the changing needs of their customers.
  • Businesses with a low tolerance for failure and risk in their online business.
  • Companies are looking for cost reduction in their development, integration, and deployment processes.
  • Companies want to make new features available to their customers in their online applications or websites.

What are DevOps tools?

Wondering which tools to adopt in a DevOps model? We suggest you find out about the following tools that could be useful to your organization daily.

  • Source code management tools: Git, Subversion, Github, Gitlab, and Bitbucket.
  • Continuous integration and deployment tools: Jenkins, GitlabCI, Bamboo, TeamCity, Concourse, CircleCI, or Travis CI.
  • Tools for automation: Terraform, Ansible, Puppet, and Salt.
  • Monitoring and alert tools: Prometheus, Grafana, or the ELK suite (Elasticsearch, Kibana, Logstash).
  • Project management tools: Jira and Trello.
  • Containers (Docker, RKT) and orchestrators (Kubernetes, Mesos, and Docker-Swarm).
  • Cloud providers: Google Cloud Platform, AWS, and Azure.

This list of tools is not exhaustive, and not all of them will be necessary for your organization. We invite you to inquire about the specificities of each one to verify that they meet your needs and objectives.

Azure DevOps: what is it?

Azure DevOps is a SaaS (Software as a service) platform from Microsoft that provides an end-to-end DevOps toolchain for developing and deploying software. It also integrates with most major tools on the market and is an excellent option for orchestrating a DevOps toolchain.

All about the DevOps profession

What is a DevOps engineer?

A DevOps engineer is an IT (information technology) professional who works with software developers, system operators and administrators, IT operations personnel, and others to oversee and manage code releases or deployments based on continuous integration/development. DevOps engineer is often used to refer to anyone who uses this strategy, whether or not they are an engineer in their own right.

What are the responsibilities of a DevOps engineer?

  • Project management: In some cases, DevOps engineers are responsible for determining the details of IT projects. To do this, they must ensure that everyone has a clear objective, is aware of deadlines, and is in regular contact.
  • The design and improvement of the IT infrastructure: Often it is the basic infrastructure that is the problem. In this case, a DevOps engineer can identify the best way to improve this aspect to promote collaboration and speed time to production.
  • Performance review and benchmarking: This is to assess the proper functioning and reliability of the system. In general, this is one of the most significant responsibilities of a DevOps engineer.
  • Automation: In many cases, releases are delayed by large but repetitive tasks. Therefore, one of the main roles of a DevOps engineer is to reduce the hours spent here by automating specific actions and creating useful plugins that lighten the load on the team.
  • Optimization of distribution cycles: Sometimes valuable time is wasted due to how release cycles have been structured. DevOps engineers, therefore, need to find ways to optimize these cycles, eliminate possible delays, and introduce new ways of operating the process.
  • Security management: The engineer is in charge of all practices aimed at keeping security at the heart of all DevOps processes. This includes automating key processes, scheduling releases, and designing infrastructure.

Why become DevOps?

The DevOps business is very buoyant in the IT market today. Much like more traditional developers, DevOps are highly sought after by businesses. With a technical skills shortage prevalent in the DevOps recruitment market, pursuing a DevOps career gives you endless job opportunities.

How to become DevOps?

Business knowledge

In many ways, the business of DevOps is to bring together various IT functions. With this in mind, it is essential to emphasize the soft skills of a DevOps engineer and their technical knowledge. It is also necessary that beyond DevOps practices, engineers understand agile methodologies. On the other hand, although software testing can be automated today, these professionals must manage to take care of it manually when necessary.

Training

To become DevOps, it is necessary to study IT development and have at least a Bac+5. Access to the job is generally not done upon leaving school but easily requires three to five years of experience in a company to gain experience in the development field. Once these years of expertise have been accumulated, you can access the DevOps position within your company or apply as a DevOps in a competing company. Today there are many private training courses to become DevOps.

Why hire a consultant trained in DevOps methods?

Now that you have learned about the benefits of DevOps, whether to improve your internal technical processes and increase your customer’s experience and satisfaction, you may be wondering where to start. The most obvious solution is to hire a consultant who specializes in DevOps.

Also Read: 4 DevOps Practices To Boost Your Software Project

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