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Patrick Debois

Charting out devops ideas

Thanks to the devopsdays conference, the idea of devops seems to live on. While talking with other people about it, I realize that it is difficult to frame it within the current IT landscape. At lot of the ideas are coming from different kinds of emerging technologies (T) and process management (P) approaches.

For me the two most important observations are:

  • there is a increase in feedback loops between business, all parts of the delivery process and operations
  • thanks to this feedback loops we increase the quality and speed up the flow

So where can you look for devops ideas ? As you can see on the map , these interactions are all over the place.

  • (A) Business focusing on both functional and non-functional requirements: business are becoming aware that f.i. downtime and data loss can really drive their customers to the competition
  • (B) *New software architectures driven by the -ities: new topics as NO-SQL databases, queueing systems are increasingly used in software architecture to handle scability, caching systems like memcached in combination with programming languages
  • (C) Testing and monitoring growing towards each other: reuse of test logic into the monitoring system (f.i. cucumber-nagios), using monitoring probes in test environment to validate applications under scenario’s
  • (D) Operations teams organizing themselves to cope with changes from business: ideas like agile operations and lean operations
  • (E) Closer interaction between development and system engineering during the projects: agile project methods or others that form a multifunctional team instead of different silo’s
  • (F) Project Learning from operations: architects now actively inside projects and getting feedback of operations on what works or not, for better redesign
  • (G) Operations as a first listener to customer problems: Operations can also make the difference similar to sales in treating the customer right and listening in on problems and providing feedback to the business
  • (H) Business using operational metrics as feedback: to see what customers like or how they act on decreases in performances or outage is becoming an important feedback loop to make better business decisions
  • (I) Sysadmins using development techniques: using code repositories, continuous integration, testing tools, design patterns to handle automation and provisioning of systems
  • (J) Deployment growing towards configuration mgt: provisioning a systems uses a configuration management for the definition and these same tools (chef, puppet) are used for operational/live changes as well
  • (K) Operations teams developing new tools for managing systems: as there is still a large tool gap, a lot of sysadmins are working on better tools for mass deployment, large configuration changes, monitoring
  • (L) New system architectures: this were cloud computing and agile infrastructure comes in, better and innovative ways to automate the provisioning and deployment
  • (M) Operations team going upstream in the process instead of more passive role: Experiments with kanban in operations to interact during the project phase and even before the project phase (sales, Service Leve Management)
devops ideas overview

You can probably find a lot more or think that some have nothing to do with devops as such. I really like to hear your thoughts on this list. The focus of this post is not by the 100% exactness or completeness. Think of it as work in process waiting for your feedback ;-)