DevOps 101: What Does DevOps Mean & Why Do I Need it?

Posted by Dustin Keib, Head of Cloud Enablement

Aug 12, 2020

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If you’re familiar with the cloud even a little bit, you’ve probably heard the term “DevOps” mentioned more than once. While it sounds like something out of a sci-fi novel, it’s a digital movement that improves life in the cloud. 

And, chances are, it’s one that you need to understand and implement in your cloud strategy. 

That’s why we’re starting this latest blog series, DevOps 101. In this and future blogs, we’ll demystify the concept and walk you through what makes DevOps so valuable in the cloud world.

So What is DevOps, Anyway?

Let’s say you are a developer and you need to build code for a Software as a Service (SaaS) application that is delivered via your company’s website. You write the code but don’t have any significant contact with the IT Operations Team who runs the infrastructure that delivers your code and serves the website. You do your thing; they do theirs.

Most of the time this works out OK, but sometimes you run into problems once your code moves into the production environment. You feel as though the operations team didn’t configure things quite as well as they should have, and it seems like the configurations are always changing, leaving you feeling like you’re chasing a moving target. 

DevOps togetherYou are always wanting to ship new features and bug fixes to your customers, but they always push back, not wanting to “break things that are working.”

On the flip side, let’s say you lead the operations team and often feel like the work passed along by the developers just isn’t quite ready to be deployed to production. There may be untested errors, and it feels like every time the developers push an update, everything breaks and you get an endless stream of user tickets.

So was it bad coding and testing or poor execution to blame on these failures? It might just be the fact these teams work in separate worlds. 

This scenario is all-too-common across all sectors in organizations of all sizes. Keeping development and operations teams separate can create all sorts of headaches and slow your time to market.

What if you could combine your teams into one holistic unit that works together, breaking down silos and fostering a true collaborative connection between your development and production teams?

DevOps does just that. It blends the philosophies, the people, the technologies and cultures of two different digital areas, software development (the Dev) and IT operations (the Ops). One major component of a successful DevOps initiative is a major shift in your way of thinking about infrastructure: to begin treating your servers as disposable components, and expressing their configuration using what is known as “infrastructure as code” as opposed to treating each one as a special snowflake.

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Dustin Keib, Head of Cloud Enablement

Dustin is a software engineer, systems architect, and cloud scalability expert at Onix. His deep understanding of the full SaaS and Paas stack comes from 20+ years of enterprise IT experience. Dustin is a Certified Google Cloud Solutions Architect, AWS Solutions Architect - Associate, and Puppet Professional and has a deep knowledge of infrastructure automation, containers, and CI/CD system design and implementation.

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