Archive for January, 2020

All You Need To Know About DevOps

As a term, DevOps is derived by combining two different terms- Dev and Ops. “Dev” is a vast term that covers all kinds of software developers and “Ops” includes system engineers, system administrators, operations staff, release engineers, network engineers, system security professionals, and various other sub-disciplines.

DevOps is a practice rather than a set of tools. It can be defined as a setup where the development and operations engineers work together through all the stages of a service lifecycle including design, development, production support, deployment, testing, and continuous improvement.

DevOps is essentially based upon a CAMS structure:

  • Culture: This practice requires the organization to build a culture where people and processes are top priorities. It focuses on the overall service that is delivered to the customer instead of the ‘working software’ only.
  • Automation: In order to implement the DevOps practice to its complete capabilities, it is essential to build an automated fabric of tools. Common tools that should be a part of this fabric are the tools for release management, provisioning, configuration management, systems integration, monitoring, control, and orchestration.
  • Measurement: Successful implementation of DevOps requires a team to regularly measure some metrics such as performance metrics, product metrics, and people metrics. Regularly measuring these metrics helps the team to make improvements, where required.
  • Sharing: Sharing of ideas is an important part of DevOps implementation. It involves a thorough discussion of problems between the development and operations teams to find common solutions.

Challenges Solved By DevOps:

In the absence of DevOps application development, a general development scenario includes:

  • A development team that is responsible for gathering business requirements for software and writing code.
  • A QA team that is responsible for testing the software in an isolated development environment and releasing the code for deployment by the operations team, if requirements are met.
  • A deployment team that is further fragmented into independent groups such as networking and database teams.

Since the teams functioned independently, new challenges are added whenever software is pushed from one phase to another. Some of the challenges arising from this setup are:

  • The development team is unaware of the problems faced by the QA and Operations teams which may prevent the software from functioning as required.
  • QA and operations teams have little information about the business purpose and value that formed the basis of software development.
  • Each team has independent goals that may contradict each other leading to reduced efficiency.

DevOps application development helps in integrating the teams and thus, overcoming these challenges. It establishes cross-functional teams that run in collaboration to maintain the environment that runs the software.

For more information on DevOps, call Centex Technologies at (254) 213 – 4740.

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A Comprehensive Guide To Continuous Deployment

Continuous Deployment is the practice of releasing software on production servers continuously in an automated manner. Before a software is released, it needs to be thoroughly tested for ensuring that it is free from any bugs and errors. In the case of continuous deployment, the testing is done by using a testing software instead of manual testing. If the code is found to be free from errors, it is automatically deployed. The automation of the release of the software helps software development organizations in ensuring that the software updates reach the end-users as soon as possible with a minimum lag time.

One of the primary requirements for continuous deployment is to implement a series of other automated programs that can pull the software seamlessly through later stages of development into release. These stages of development include compiling and validation of source code, reviewing the code, unit testing, integration testing, packaging the application and user acceptance testing.

How Is Continuous Deployment Different From Continuous Integration And Continuous Delivery?

Continuous deployment takes continuous delivery a step further, which is generally perceived as furtherance of continuous integration. In order to understand the difference, it is important to understand the terms individually:

  • Continuous Integration: It is a technique that continually merges the source code from different developers into a shared mainline. This helps in avoiding cataclysmic merge conflicts as new source code is regularly added by various developers.
  • Continuous Delivery: This technique adds a step to continuous integration. It takes the merged code and conducts the necessary tests to ensure that the code is error-free. Thus, in this technique, the code is written, tested and pushed into a production-like environment. The software stays in the holding area until a developer manually pushes it for deployment.

Continuous Deployment reduces the hold time of continuous delivery by taking it a step further. Once the software code is created, tested and pushed into the production-like environment to see how it would perform in the real-time environment; the code is deployed automatically without any manual interference.

Stages Of Continuous Deployment Pipeline

  1. Deploy To Production: In this step, developers need to deploy the software in a production environment without releasing the functionality to end-users. Also, it is important to implement a system that allows you to toggle between the old & new versions.
  2. Verify: During this stage, various tests are performed including user acceptance, stress test, performance test, etc.
  3. Monitor: Monitor the deployed code as per your business metrics to gain insights for strategic business outcomes. Make sure that the code works as desired in the production environment and make the changes as required.
  4. Respond & Recover: After the software is released, it is important to keep a check for unforeseen issues. Manage a system for proactively detecting problems before they are detected by end-users and recover from these problems by providing fixes or patches.

For more information on continuous deployment, call Centex Technologies at (254) 213 – 4740.

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