What is DevOps and what challenges does it solve?

This is part one of a five part series where we will look at DevOps and the solutions that can be gained by its implementation. 

Introduction

DevOps has become an increasingly popular technique for shepherding software from the design phase through development and testing, and then all the way into production. The business value of DevOps is quite profound: DevOps reduces software delivery times, improves application quality, and enhances the productivity of the development and operations teams.  In recognition of this trend, many organizations are interested in automating their software release and deployment processes. However, by focusing exclusively on the “production” release/deployment process – a task primarily managed by Operations (Ops), organizations are not fully leveraging the value that Dev can bring to DevOps.

DevOps Overview

What constitutes DevOps? First, Dev (shorthand for ‘development’) signifies the teams and procedures involved in creating software. The exact meaning of Dev varies among organizations, but it typically incorporates:

  • Software development
  • Build, compile, integrate
  • Quality assurance
  • Software release
  • Support in deployment and production tasks as needed

Secondly, Ops (shorthand for ‘operations’) refers to a wide swath of critical responsibilities such as:

  • System administration
  • Provisioning and configuration
  • Health and performance monitoring of servers, key software infrastructure, and applications
  • Change and release management
  • Other infrastructure support

Thus, merging Dev and Ops results in a blend of principles, guidelines, and best practices that deeply involve both of these groups. Furthermore, DevOps is bolstered by technologies such as release management and deployment tools.

Come back next week for the second installment of the 5 week series entitled Why is there a divide between Dev and Ops.

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