What is DevOps? It is short hand for development and operations by combining these two capabilities. The term was founded in 2008 by Andrew Shafer and Patrick Debois; When it was presented as “Agile Infrastructure” at an Agile development conference. This deployment methodology has gained traction ever since. DevOps focuses on constant communication between product development, technology development, and operations.
DevOps vs. Agile
Agile is a way to think about developing software and DevOps is a way to think about moving the developed software into production. Agile is a software creation mythology that iterates (or develops) typically on 2 week sprints; defining small pieces of business requirements bit by bit. DevOps is rather a final delivery method of how you move your business solution into the production environment; and can be used in tandem with any software methodology such as Agile, RUP, or, Waterfall etc. Information Week provides these great distinctions between Agile (left) vs. DevOps (Right):
- Mythology vs. Deployment Process
- Cross Functional Teams vs. Siloed Teams
- Communication via daily standup meetings (scrums) vs. traditional specs & design documentation.
- Scrum team vs. a team of teams
- Short sprints for fast iterations vs. planned deployment schedule to reduce business impact.
- Agile documentation is light vs. thorough docs since it transitions to another team.
DevOps Business Benefits
WInformation Technology was moving faster than regulations could keep up with which lead to quick solutions that perhaps were not as safe or foolproof as the consumer/customer would have preferred. As a result of the face paced environment, the United States Congress passed the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX) in 2002. SOX was implemented to protect shareholders and the general public from fraud and other opportunities to corrupt financial reporting; which had been purposely distorted by companies like Enron and WolrdCom and ultimately led to a market collapse. Within the technology space it’s equally important to protect your development from intentional or accidental gaps where you could have vulnerabilities. Typically, the easiest way to close gaps is to restrict access between software development and software deployment. Using the Agile approach, software developers would have exclusive access to a development environment, and the DevOps team would have access to the production environments. This typically provides a sufficient firewall to pass oversight audits. Using the DevOps method helps put emphasize these firm barriers between the teams; ensuring those making the code changes don’t also control the production environment.
For highly regulated industries such as health care, financial services, and Federal entities, utilizing DevOps helps maintain compliance with the respective regulations; such as HIPPA, HITECH Act, SOX, Dodd-Frank Act, and/or Separation of Duty (SOD) controls.
Our Application Solutions practice can help bring DevOps to your organization or help address some of the challenges your experience with your current DevOps implementation.