DevOps has changed the way companies develop and release software applications, possibly forever. While indeed not the last word in app design or embraced by the entire software development community (not everyone is convinced of DevOps' value), the methodology has sparked a cultural shift in the development process.
This cultural shift is why, even if you don’t choose to implement DevOps with your software development team, it’s still a good idea to familiarize yourself with DevOps principles and practices. The DevOps methodology has applications beyond high-quality software development; other businesses can benefit from its lessons.
This article will define the term “DevOps,” examine the principles of DevOps, touch upon DevOps practices, and increase your understanding of the ways of DevOps by exploring its culture.
Let’s start the journey with a DevOps overview.
DevOps is a portmanteau, a combination of the terms “development” and “operations.” DevOps is a collection of software development principles uniting the two groups into a single entity dedicated to meeting a standard set of goals, particularly in developing software applications.
It’s not a product. It doesn’t require any special hardware or dedicated infrastructure. All you need to use DevOps is the willingness to adopt its values and principles and adapt them to fit your organization’s needs.
Software designers use DevOps to speed up the time to market, apply required incremental improvements in response to unexpected changes, all set in a CI/CD (continuous integration and continuous delivery) framework. The net result is a more streamlined development process.
DevOps Best Practices
Here is a list of DevOps best practices applicable to all the stages of any application design project.
- Gain the stakeholders’ active participation as soon as possible
- Developers and testers should test code often and early, using automated testing
- Bring change management to every stage of the project, exposing a larger audience to enterprise-level issues
- Make sure users have development support after you release new builds
- Define your integrated deployment best practices and implement them across the internal and external communities
- Keep code repositories regularly updated and ensure that updates are continuously integrated into the workflow
- Build, test, and release code faster via continuous delivery
- Build system-wide structures to facilitate configuration management, consolidating operations, and adding visibility to Information Technology leaders
- Quickly bring in new features by taking advantage of continuous deployment tools
- Automate dashboards to permit team members and leaders to spot bottlenecks and further investigate roadblocks quickly
- Ensure applications have sufficient monitoring, usually automated so that development teams can quickly identify production code difficulties
The Seven Must-know DevOps Principles
There’s a difference between principles and best practices. Best practices are universal concepts, applicable anywhere. Consider them more generic, widely accepted quality standards that any industry can apply. Principles, however, are geared more to a product or vision. In this instance, the principles apply to the DevOps methodology.
Look up “DevOps principles'' on any search engine, and you’ll find articles listing the best five, six, seven, nine, even twelve DevOps principles. We have narrowed down the field and chosen 7 principles of DevOps that are the most necessary for its successful implementation.
The seven fundamental DevOps principles:
Create a Collaborative Environment.
DevOps brings together development and operation teams, which implies an atmosphere of collaboration, a unified team that pursues common goals. Consequently, the teams are encouraged to communicate, brainstorm, share ideas, and solve problems together. Furthermore, this collaboration must start from the top and work its way down, beginning with executive support.
Automate, Automate, Automate
So important, we said it three times. The DevOps team should automate as much of the process as possible. Automation can benefit operations like Continuous Integration/Continuous Delivery (CI/CD), infrastructure provisioning, security compliance verification tests, functionality tests, and software deployment. The more you can automate processes, the safer, faster, and more reliable the product release.
Monitor the Process Continuously
Not only should the DevOps team implement the CI/CD pipeline, but they should also bolster this process with continuous monitoring. The DevOps team must monitor apps, logs, infrastructure, and systems, keeping an eye out for problems. When the team detects a problem, they can quickly revert the application to its previous state and resolve the issue. Continuous monitoring also spots productivity issues that may slow down pipeline productivity.
Implement End-to-End Responsibility
The traditional software development model gave the software developers and operations separate roles. Under DevOps, however, both groups are accountable for the application from start to finish.
Foster Continuous Improvement
Customer needs change, technology improves, and governing bodies adopt new regulations. DevOps teams release a solid product and work to continuously improve the product's performance, compliance, and speed. Thus, the final product release doesn’t end the story; the team keeps an eye on the application and ensures it stays relevant in a changing world.
Don’t Be Afraid to Fail. Learn From It
No one likes to fail, of course. But rather than treating failure as a personal blow, teams must change their attitudes and see failure as a chance to learn something. In other words, learn from your mistakes. After all, errors inevitably happen; you may as well get some benefit from them!
It’s All About the Customer
If you don’t have clients, you don’t need to create a product. If you don’t need to create a product, you don’t have a job. That’s why DevOps teams need to deliver a product that meets the customer’s needs. DevOps teams must always keep an ear open to the client’s voice, maintaining pace with their always-changing needs.
The DevOps Culture
The DevOps mindset creates strong collaborative bonds between software development and operations teams. The DevOps culture unites development, operations, and quality assurance into one set of continuous actions. The DevOps environment and culture are built on these foundations:
- Constant collaboration and communication. These two elements are the bedrock of the DevOps culture. DevOps teams must work as a single unit while being mindful of the needs and expectations of all their members.
- Gradual changes. Rather than releasing everything at once and risk producing a flawed product, implementing incremental rollouts enables delivery teams to release a quality product to end-users while having the chance to make updates and roll back development if errors crop up. It’s far better to make corrections while the product is in the process of development rather than having to pull a completed release to address bugs and other mistakes.
- Shared end-to-end responsibility. When every development team member is heading in the same direction towards one goal and shares equal responsibility for a project from start to finish, they work as a cohesive unit. This single-mindedness creates an atmosphere of cooperation and teamwork, encouraging members to look for ways to make work easier for their teammates.
- Early problem-solving. The DevOps philosophy requires that tasks be completed as early in the project lifecycle as possible. This way, if there are any problems, they will be tackled and resolved much faster. This methodology keeps the development on schedule.
The Benefits of DevOps Principles
There are three key benefits of DevOps Principles in order to adopt the DevOps mindset.
- Faster response to customer needs. In today’s competitive digital market, businesses must release products that the customers want. If your business can’t do it, prospective clients will take their business elsewhere. DevOps helps companies react faster to changing customer needs and wants, allowing the team to add new updates and features faster. This process, in turn, improves customer loyalty and retention.
- Better quality products get released and faster! The CI/CD system embraced by the DevOps methodology means faster releases of reliable applications, free of bugs. As a result, errors are caught in the early stages of development, not after the product hits the market.
- It creates a better working environment. Communication is the foundation of any successful relationship, including relationships between team members and other people in the company. DevOps brings practices and principles conducive to better communication, collaboration, and cooperation. This greater level of communication, in turn, improves morale, which makes for a healthier, more productive working environment.
That was all about DevOps principles.
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Do You Want a Career in DevOps?
As you can see in the article DevOps Principles, there are many good reasons to become a DevOps expert. If you would like a career in DevOps, Simplilearn has all the tools you need to make your DevOps dream a reality.
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You will learn the science and art of improving your entire team’s development and operational activities. The course gives you the expertise you need via hands-on projects in continuous deployment, using configuration management tools such as Puppet, SaltStack, and Ansible.
DevOps jobs remain in high demand, so if you’re looking for a secure, rewarding career, then look no further than the world of DevOps. Let Simplilearn make your journey to DevOps success so much easier. Check out our courses today!