Best DevOps Tools to Learn and Master

The traditional separation between software development teams and information technology operations teams once caused many problems throughout the production process. Then came the idea of DevOps, which has its roots in the Agile methodology and integrates the two teams to improve collaboration and productivity. There are actually many different definitions of the term “DevOps,” and the concepts behind it are multilayered. But most will agree at least that continuity and automation are big parts of DevOps, and certain DevOps tools help team members ensure that those two elements will be implemented as efficiently as possible. Of course, your organization’s specific needs will determine which tools are best for you, but here are what many consider to be the top DevOps tools.

Here is the list of Best DevOps tools:

  1. Docker

    This Linux-based open-source platform focuses on containers, meaning you package up the software with its dependencies and ship everything together as a unit—no need to worry about managing dependencies separately. It’s portable and highly secure, you can use any language with it, and it integrates well with a number of other tools, such as Jenkins, Ansible and Bamboo. Research firm Forrester cited Docker as a leader in the enterprise container platform category for Q4 2018.
  2. Ansible

    CIO says “Ansible has become the DevOps darling for software automation.” This open-source tool for automating software provisioning, configuration management, and application deployment is easy to use—you don’t even need to have a dedicated systems administrator—yet can handle highly complex deployments. Plus, it’s agentless and uses a simple syntax written in YAML language. NASA uses Ansible.
  3. Git

    Git is a highly popular open-source tool used by industry giants such as Microsoft, Amazon, and Facebook. It allows you to track the progress of your development work and coordinate work among team members. Git is great for experimenting, because you can revert to previously saved versions of your work, and you can also create branches separately and then add in the new features when they’re ready. You’ll need to host a repository for the work as well, such as GitHub.
  4. Puppet

    Puppet lets you manage and automate software inspection, delivery, and operation. This open-source tool has a solid track record and thousands of modules and is easily integrated with many other platforms. While the free version is great for smaller projects, consider Puppet Enterprise if your projects tend to be larger. Puppet Enterprise lets you manage multiple teams and thousands of resources.
  5. Chef

    This powerful open-source configuration management tool lets you turn infrastructure into a code to manage data, attributes, roles, environments and more. As a Puppet competitor, it supports multiple platforms and easily integrates with cloud-based platforms. Regardless of the size of your infrastructure, Chef can automate your infrastructure configuration and application deployment, as well as manage configurations across your network.
  6. Jenkins

    Jenkins is known for quickly finding issues in code. It’s a free, open-source tool used for automating the delivery pipeline, and lets you test and report changes almost in real-time. Jenkins has a huge plugin ecosystem (more than a thousand plugins), so it integrates with pretty much every other DevOps tool out there. Plus, it runs out of the box on Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux.
  7. Nagios

    Used to find and correct problems in networks and infrastructure, Nagios is one of the most popular free and open-source monitoring tools. There are two Nagios editions: Nagios Core and Nagios XI; the latter offers many more features for even greater functionality. You can use Nagios to monitor applications, services, network protocols and more, and it lets you keep records of things like outages and failures. Forum support is available for both editions.
  8. Splunk

    Splunk makes machine data and logs accessible to and usable by everyone on the team. While machine data contains a lot of info that can improve productivity and efficiency, it’s hard to analyze and visualize without a tool like Splunk. Developers can build custom Splunk applications and integrate Splunk data into other applications. The company itself has won several awards and is on the Forbes Digital 100 list.
  9. Bamboo

    Bamboo is similar to Jenkins but isn’t free. For the cost, you’ll get prebuilt functionalities—which means there are far fewer plugins (because you won’t need them).  Bamboo also has a highly intuitive user interface with features such as auto-completion. All in all, it can save you a lot of time when compared to open-source tools, depending on what you’re trying to accomplish.
  10. ELK Stack

    This is actually three open-source tools combined: Elasticsearch, Logstash, and Kibana. All are managed by Elastic. Elasticsearch is a search and analytics engine. Logstash collects input from various sources, and Elasticsearch stores that info. Kibana is the visualization layer. Together, they’re often used for centralized logging in IT environments. ELK stack is considered simple yet robust, and there are multiple plugins as well as an active support community.
  11. Kubernetes

    A relatively new container orchestration platform (it was released in 2015), Kubernetes lets you manage hundreds of containers. You can deploy your containerized apps to a group of computers, and Kubernetes automates their distribution and scheduling. Note that Docker and Kubernetes can be used together and are not direct competitors; Kubernetes is simply an orchestration platform (meaning it’s not a complete solution by itself), while Docker lets you build, distribute and run containers.
  12. Selenium

    This open-source tool for automating tests for web applications is used by Google, IBM, and other big-name companies. It’s used only for web applications—not desktop or mobile ones. Test scripts can be written in several languages, including Python and Java, and it works with any browser and with Windows, Mac and Linux operating systems. You can integrate it with Docker and Jenkins to achieve continuous testing.
  13. Vagrant

    Vagrant allows you to build and manage virtual machine environments in a single workflow—meaning that whether you’re a developer, an operator or a designer, you’ll have the same simple workflow as everyone else on the team. Vagrant, which is open source, aims to mirror a production environment so bugs can be fixed early in the production process. It can be integrated with Chef, Puppet, Ansible and more.
  14. Maven

    This open-source tool from Apache automates the build process and resolution of dependencies and is used primarily for Java projects. It is based on the concept of a project object model, relies on XML and has predefined targets for performing common tasks. Most of Maven’s functionality comes through plugins.
  15. Gradle

    Gradle builds on Apache Ant and Maven and has been growing steadily in popularity since its introduction in 2009. With this open-source build automation tool, you can write code in Java, C++, Python, and other languages and, unlike Maven and Ant (which use XML), it uses a Groovy-based domain-specific language for describing builds. Gradle was designed for multi-project builds and is quite a bit faster than Maven, due to its incremental builds, build cache and daemon.

Next Steps

A career in DevOps is exciting because you’ll always be integrating new technologies and solving new challenges. But it’s more than just exciting; it’s well paid. PayScale lists the average salary of a DevOps engineer as $91,187, but a senior DevOps engineer in the San Francisco area earns much more than that—an average of $173,848, according to Glassdoor.

If you’re interested in a career in DevOps, you’ll need to learn not just the best tools but the underlying concepts, such as continuous development and deployment. Simplilearn’s DevOps Certification course will teach you everything you need to know to be an expert in the field and start earning that higher salary!

DevOps Certification

About the Author

Shivam AroraShivam Arora

Shivam Arora is a Senior Product Manager at Simplilearn. Passionate about driving product growth, Shivam has managed key AI and IOT based products across different business functions. He has 6+ years of product experience with a Masters in Marketing and Business Analytics.

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