Best Practices for Using DevOps in the Cloud

The Challenges of Multi-Cloud Environments

Companies at the frontier of technological evolution recognize how important it is to streamline development processes so that the ever changing requirements of the market can be quickly and efficiently addressed. While the cloud offers automatic scaling to make room for application changes, it is DevOps that makes optimal use of cloud resources. However, even the best practices for DevOps get compromised when the pressure of accelerating the business is heightened.

The fusion of cloud services and DevOps is relatively new; it has posed relevant obstructions in understanding core mechanics and improvising of these mechanics into practical scenarios. What is to follow is a collection of ideas that should be kept in mind while working with DevOps for its best possible implementation in a cloud-based environment.

Training is Essential

The challenges posed by operating evolving technology should be seen as opportunities to formulate generalizations on how to make the best use of the technology. Proper training before implementation works as an investment that will reward your business. Training sessions help employees tackle common obstacles and be prepared for significant events that might occur during execution. If properly mentored, the unit can become independent of future assistance, which will result in minimized errors and maximized precision.

Taking Security Measures

It’s intuitive to acknowledge that the security model in the cloud is not the same as in old data practices; this requires special attention because security is the backbone of your implementation system. When DevOps is introduced into the environment, it should be made sure that each implementation level is complying with the required security measures — automated testing should be deployed and integrated into these levels of the environment.

Choosing DevOps Tools

While choosing DevOps tools, keep in mind that you are selecting a set of tools that are not dedicated to one particular cloud (on demand, on-premise or public). When you restrict your business to a specific cloud, you forfeit the luxury of moving from one cloud to the other depending on your need — this directly interrupts the smooth and optimal deployment of DevOps.

Service and Resource Governance

Ongoing operations in the environment, if not properly governed, might result in clogging of processes. It so happens that lack of governance only comes in notice when you see a multitude of operations becoming impossible to manage. To avoid this scenario, you must build a management system that ensures a smooth and systematic workflow; this is easily achieved through the formulation of a governance infrastructure well in advance. It comprises of features and functions that help in tracking, securing, and managing in-house services.

Automated Testing

In cloud-based environments, application performance issues are often rendered after the application has gone into production. They are not caught before that period because automated performance testing is not implemented within the levels of production. Performance testing helps in preventing poor performing applications from going into production through partial checking at every level of production — this is an essential measure to be taken to ensure better performance and efficient use of resources.

Importance of Containers

Containers give you added flexibility to move the components of an application on an independent basis; you can efficiently manage and orchestrate your applications using these independent containers at intermediate levels. Integrating containers into the DevOps process will make the development processes more manageable. However, containers cannot be implemented into any application, as some applications require a unified application core in development. Know the needs of your application and the standard of this approach.

Cloud computing sees soaring development as soon as DevOps is introduced in the business; however, these soaring developments can be hindered by many unprecedented obstacles. Applying strategies such as maintaining containers, automated testing, and governance, you can cut short those obstacles; this requires expertise; therefore, it is advised that you consider taking the help of field experts whenever necessary. Once you understand the nature of commitment and knowledge needed to implement smooth functioning of DevOps, this component will become an indispensable part of your strategic model.

Also Read

The Challenges of Multi-Cloud Environments
Top 5 DevOps Trends to Watch Out for in 2019
Data Security Challenges in Cloud Computing
How to Avoid Cloud Migration Mistakes

Top 5 DevOps Trends to Watch Out for in 2019

Top 5 DevOps Trends to Watch Out for in 2019

DevOps is a well-trodden path, which has been gaining momentum over the past few years. Considering ever-evolving routines, the year 2019 is becoming the year of interest for organizations looking out for DevOps improvements. DevOps has ushered in a wave of new collaboration between different teams, which has led to the creation of an end to end connection across organizational structures.

Given this style of DevOps, there is a seamless connection between the development and operational teams, which has enabled both sets of groups to work as a single unit. Let’s take a look at current DevOps trends that you may wish to look out for in the year 2019.

Automation Through Artificial Intelligence and Data Science: The continuous rise of artificial intelligence and data science has become a game changer to reckon. A majority of applications these days are fueled by AI, which is pushing DevOps teams to look for opportunities within their workflow streams for automation possibilities. Zero-touch automation is the aim for 2019; the idea is to see how much of it can be implemented eventually. As the amount of data being generated by DevOps increases by the day, there are a lot of insights which can be driven through the use of artificial intelligence and big data. Add a layer of machine learning to this mix, and you will have a lot of tools to play around with your data and generate useful insights.

Go Serverless: Serverless computing is not an abstract invention anymore; it has changed the way applications are being developed, tested and operated in today’s scenario. By going serverless, IT companies can scale their workloads in the Cloud, thereby making use of cost-effective solutions. Companies can channel their primary focus on app development, while server provisions are taken care of by Cloud providers and managers — the serverless feature can allow companies to pay for what they use. Going serverless can help organizations achieve business agility, which can add an extra layer of efficiency in the long run. Functions as a service or FaaS will emerge as the next hot commodity in 2019, which will further enable a faster startup time, along with better utilization of resources and advantageous process management. All of these will emerge as benefits, with the use of DevOps software.

Everything as Code: There is no denying the fact that coding has become the backbone of the IT industry now. The future of this industry relies on the technical capabilities of the developers, the testers, and the operation’s people. Since DevOps is all about automation, fewer failure fixes, to facilitate faster delivery cycles, there is an imminent need to bring in code which can be easily versioned and reused to enhance the efficiency of software production cycles. The concept of “Everything as Code,” including Infrastructure as Code, is the underlying practice of DevOps and it can be introduced into the SDLC within 2019 to create ripples in the DevOps world.

Embedded Security is of Utmost Precedence: Security breaches have made organizations take notice of cybersecurity and turning it into a business imperative. Through the implementation of embedded security, greater collaboration can be enabled within the software development processes, making the process efficient, effective, and remarkably seamless. Mainstream DevOps will begin using security as a code, which makes the entire team accountable right from the initiation stage within the development cycle.

Continuous Delivery is the Buzzword: Continuous Delivery is the buzzword garnering a lot of stress as 2019 begins to take control of the DevOps world. The trend has shifted from continuous integration, and slowly heading to consistent delivery. DevOps is taking a more inclusive approach to the world of software development, and it will continue to be ramped up as the days’ progress. To support and maintain this shift more and more companies will adopt tools to handle multiple segments of the continuous delivery process, including those processes which are focused on building, deploying, and releasing the different stages within the software development process.

DevOps is improving with each year, and there is a lot of emphasis being laid on the improvements of processes, which can make the operation of the DevOps even more effective and useful. The concept is no longer new; initiation and carrying forward is what needs to be taken into consideration, to ensure everything is working smoothly as a well-oiled machine.

Also Read

Data Security Challenges in Cloud Computing
How to Avoid Cloud Migration Mistakes
Best Practices for Cloud Security

Why You Should Consider DevOps for Your Organization

Why You Should Consider DevOps for Your Organization

Adopting DevOps offers a cultural change in the workforce by enabling engineers to cross the barrier between the development teams and operations teams. Instead of having two disjointed groups, DevOps brings together the operational and developmental paradigms under the same Agile experience. DevOps introduces many benefits to organizations both regarding efficiency and error reduction; it infuses cohesion amongst the departments that otherwise remain disjunctive of each other. This, in turn, helps production acceleration and better quality reassurance.

Further reasons why you should consider adopting a DevOps culture:

Progressive Collaboration
For years, developers have faced the dilemma of repeating work and manufacturing pitfalls in a setup where development and operation did not go hand-in-hand. DevOps promises to bridge the gap between the two where both employ bottom-up and top-down feedback from each other. With DevOps, when development seeks operational help or when operations require immediate development, both remain ready for each other at any given time.

In such a scenario, the software development culture brings in to focus combined development instead of individual goals; this fosters healthy experiments, improved research, and innovation in the organization. The development environment becomes more progressive as all the team members work in cohesion towards a common goal.

Processing Acceleration
With conjoined operational and developmental paradigms, the communication lag between the two is reduced to null — these integrated teams help in rapid development and deployment of applications; this has multiple implications in the current market setup where rapidity is vital for maintaining supply and adaptation, and to improve efficiency.

Organizations continuously strive for a better edge over their competing rivals, and if such acceleration is not achieved, the organization will have to succumb to competing forces— innovation will be slower, and the product market will decay. DevOps, in such a scenario, makes use of real-time performance data to comprehend and predict code configuration, in addition to how they impact the applications. As a result, the product rectifications are faster and more prompt causing overall development processes to become quicker.

Shorter Recovery Time
DevOps deployment functions on a more focused and exclusive approach which makes issues more accessible to spot; this helps error rectification faster and easier to implement. In a situation of failure, the development team need not recheck the entire source code for detecting that error. The most the team will need to check is the latest code changes to resolve an issue.

Therefore, the resolution to problems is inherently quicker, as troubleshooting happens to take place at the current development level only, within a single team. Thus, the overall time for recovery and rectification is drastically reduced.

Lower Failure Rate
In DevOps, the abridged departments yield shorter development cycles which result in rapid production. The entire process becomes modular wherein issues related to configuration, application code, and infrastructure become more apparent and pre-accessible — this lowers the error count drastically since no significant error will be made reiteratively.

A decrease in error count also positively affects the success rates of development. The team members become increasingly engaged in the lifecycle of particular application development where every member is aware of the shortcomings of the current code. Therefore, very few fixes will be required to attain a fully functional code for the desired output.

Higher Job Satisfaction
DevOps fosters equality by bringing different officials at the same level of interaction. The power mechanism is decoded and attains linearity of importance in this communicative environment. The environment exhibits more of a performance-based cohesion than a power-based hierarchy. The obstacles are faced cumulatively by all instead of shifting the load to a single pair of shoulders; this helps in reducing the stress and workload of the developers and motivating them to think more openly about the possibilities of eradicating those obstacles. The process also boosts confidence in individual employees and fosters greater job satisfaction.

Fast and error-free outputs are naturally desired in today’s digital organizations as demands are becoming higher day by day. DevOps serves as a handy tool for achieving that feat; it enables the workforce to work in cohesion where chances for failure are minimal, and production is rapid. As a result, the processing becomes efficient and workspace more promising. If implemented wisely, DevOps can influence the workflow by increasing its speed, security, stability, and dependability.

Also Read

The Top 5 Advantages of the Hybrid Cloud
Top Tips for Ensuring Microservices Security within Your Applications
Artificial Intelligence is Changing the Information Technology Sector

How DevOps Will Help You Get More Business

How DevOps Will Help You Get More Business

Out of the various methodologies available in the market, businesses are relying more heavily on DevOps to provide products faster and reduce release cycles. Through the development of DevOps, companies are automating their delivery pipelines and steadily integrating new techniques within the deployment cycles at a steady pace.

There was a time when the development and operations teams used to work separately. With the launch of the DevOps concept, traditional silos have been broken down, and rapid efficiency has been instilled in organizational structures.

DevOps Is All about Business Transformation

The agile culture has rapidly stepped in, bringing with it business growth and transformation. Organizations which have utilized the DevOps concept are said to have seen 60% higher revenues along with increased profitability. Most of the times, enterprises which are forward thinking and open to innovation and participative, will benefit the most out of the principles of DevOps. On the contrary, enterprises which are simply stuck in a rut, and are not ready to get out of their monolithic silos will continue to employ the traditional methodologies, and in turn, lose out with their competition.

Challenges in the Making

In an ideal world, organizations which fully embrace the values of DevOps can garner a lot of respect in the market. Despite this supposition, only one-third organizations can get repeat the benefits, many of them being self-made.

Other obstacles which prevent organizations from getting into the DevOps groove can be earmarked as budget constraints, security-related issues, and lack of necessary skills and knowledge. To get over these minor challenges, one needs to measure the benefits to the business, and accordingly carve out a strategy to enhance the utilization of the techniques to achieve final goals.

Ways DevOps Drive Business Growth

Organizations are out to make profits, lower costs, and enhance their customer experiences. But all this can be driven, only when the enterprises are ready to take the necessary initiatives to employ agile practices within their processes and create a sense of unity, by overcoming the self-created challenges. A proper strategy is needed to drive business growth, which will be fueled by the efforts of the employees, working in tandem towards achieving business goals.

Speed up Your Product Deployment

Beating the competition is of paramount importance for an organization. By possessing the ability to develop and deploy at a fast pace, an organization can ensure success in the product development cycle. However, this can be achieved by making use of the DevOps procedures. Since DevOps provides continuous development and delivery, it becomes an essential tool for driving business growth. More products in the market will mean higher revenue for an organization.

Better communication channels through collaboration between teams start by doing away with the silo structures within an organization and furthering communication in order to speed up the product lifecycle. Through enhanced communication and operations, development teams can work seamlessly with each other to ensure the right product development takes places.

Performance-oriented Culture Is All It Takes

Changing a company’s culture and making it more performance oriented is a big deal, which can only be achieved by the deployment of DevOps culture within the organization. By driving such a culture, management can eradicate inefficiencies caused by traditional work methodologies, and further encourage information sharing and mitigation of risks across functions.

DevOps is all about driving product development and deployment while ensuring that it is well within the confines of the company’s limits. The idea is to drive efficiency and enhance production patterns to ensure that everything is developed and deployed, as developers and operations work together to form a successful union.

Since working together is the mantra for success, a business needs to know how to tap in the right resources while ushering in the required changes so that there is harmony between the different processes and teams.

Also Read
Why Should Enterprises Move into DevOps?
How to Make DevOps Pipelines More Secured
How can Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning Help with DevOps?
The 5 Best Practices for DevOps in the Cloud

Why Should Enterprises Move into DevOps?

Why Should Enterprises Move into DevOps?

DevOps has become the talk of the town these days and enterprises are rapidly adopting its practices within their day to day functions, to enhance operational efficiency. Businesses can gain a variety of benefits; these the benefits are not dependent on the business size or the nature of the company.

Now the question is why should enterprises move into DevOps and what can they gain with this movement? For large scale enterprises, moving to DevOps might seem like a daunting experience, given the series of unknown elements at play within the field. However, if one were to look at the bigger picture, the benefits would emerge to be more than the risks involved.

Customers want convenience in their day to day operations. For this very reason, there is a lot of pressure on enterprises to perform well, while automating their day to day operations. Without the involvement of DevOps and the automation facilities it brings along with, it becomes difficult for businesses to meet customer demands in an ideal scenario.

Resons For Enterprises to Move to DevOps

Continuous Delivery and Quicker Updates: Software updates in the traditional manner can take many hours, which might even span over a few days. However, with the launch of DevOps, the turnaround time for updating applications has become shorter. Faster delivery means that customer-facing applications will not lose their functionality and that any downtime will be shorter.

With the implementation of DevOps, enterprises can implement a more streamlined updating process, which is achieved by bridging the gaps between development, quality assurance, and IT. Using this method, operational performances and customer experience is enhanced.

Enhanced Workflow: Traditional methodologies come with their own set of inefficiencies, which can hamper production. Through automation, manual and repetitive tasks can be automated, so that human errors can be minimized; this would eventually mean that developers don’t have to double check input errors. For example, security risk checks can be automated, which can deftly point out any mistakes within the systems. Through DevOps, these security checks can be run continuously, to avoid having any risks.

Improved Innovation: DevOps is all about driving innovation through the use of agile methodology. Through the use of DevOps, enterprises can get rid of organizational work silos, and further be able to scale systems to meet the ever-changing needs of consumers and developers. As DevOps improves communications between work teams and eliminates silos within the organization, it becomes easier to work towards the company’s unified goals.

Automation and innovation come along with the implementation of the agile methodology, which helps enhance day to day procedures and removes inefficient processes.

Competitive Edge: New methods and the use of agile methodology can push companies forward, helping them to zoom past their competitors. There are numerous automation possibilities with the implementation of DevOps, which means that companies gain an edge over other companies who are still using the traditional methods of production in their day to day operations.

With the option to continuously update applications and gain constant feedback, there is a vast scope for instant delivery and improvement. As feedback channels open up, feedback can be implemented immediately, and enhancements become more active within the system; this undoubtedly leads to better production.

Early Defect Detection: Once the developer checks the code, a unit test is often run to gauge the defects. If a problem is found in the system, it can be reported and fixed immediately. This way, any probability of errors occurring in the later stages can be eliminated, which means there would not be any sudden surprises towards the end of the production line. Defects can be easily managed, and everything is taken care of initially with the help of DevOps.

Overhead Reduction: Less defect accumulation can often help enterprises save a lot of money by catching issues early. If a developer waits until the last minute to detect any possible problems, the chances are that a lot of money will be wasted attempting to identify the source of the problem.

Also Read

How to Make DevOps Pipelines More Secured
How can Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning Help with DevOps?
The 5 Best Practices for DevOps in the Cloud

How to Make DevOps Pipelines More Secured?

How to Make DevOps Pipelines More Secured

Measures for continuous growth of an organization are imperative for successful business execution. Besides core DevOps, where these measurements are already uplifted, monitoring of the pipeline is also necessary; this does not merely include tool-based assistance to gear up processes, in fact, DevOps itself does not mark it as necessary. Instead, understanding the human needs of the security team, going through their workflow to grasp the limitations and pressures they endure, helps in securing the DevOps pipelines.

Additionally, explaining how a deployment pipeline works and what controls are in place — such as ensuring functional adherence performance and reliability; describing how these controls are visible to everyone and how the pipe stops when problems are found, can further enhance utility and security.

Therefore, it’s essential not only to secure the application and its runtime environment but continually enhance and secure the delivery toolchain and the build and test environments which are also equally important. Confidence should be boosted concerning the integrity of delivery and the chain of custody, not just for securing compliance for enhancing security, but also to ensure that necessary changes are made safely.

A continuous delivery toolchain is also a potential target of attacks: it becomes vulnerable in providing a clear path for making changes and pushing them automatically into production. If the toolchain is compromised, attackers have an easy way into the development, test, and production environments.

From stealing data or intellectual property to injecting malware anywhere into the environment, the attack can bring it all down. It even, in a sense, cripples the organization’s ability to respond to an attack by shutting down the pipeline itself. Thus, continuous delivery and continuous deployment effectively extend the attack surface of a production system to the build and automated test and deployment environment.

It is thus imperative to safeguard the pipeline against such attacks. But, the measure is not limited here, one also needs to protect the pipe from insider attacks by ensuring that all changes are fully transparent and traceable from end to end. Advanced automated steps mean that an informed insider cannot make a move without being detected and that they cannot bypass any checks or validations.

As the initial step, a threat model on the continuous delivery pipeline should be formed. Spotting weaknesses in the setup and controls, and loopholes in auditing or logging. After this, the following steps to secure the configuration management environment and the continuous Delivery pipeline must be taken:

• Strengthening the systems that host the source and build artifact repositories, the continuous integration and continuous delivery server/s, and the systems that host the configuration management, build, deployment, and release tools. Having absolute knowledge of what is done on premises and what is in the cloud helps in clearly understanding the environment potential and gain better control.

• Strengthening the continuous integration and continuous delivery servers by continuing to update the tools and plugins, and testing considering that simple tools like Jenkins are designed for developer convenience and are not secure by default.

• Configuration management tools are at the core that manifest system management. These need to be securely encrypted, locked down, and hardened for enhanced security.

• Often sensitive information such as keys, credentials, and other secrets are saved here and there. Such potential data must on a regular basis be taken out of scripts, source code, and plain-text files, and an audit must be performed through secure managers such as Chef Vault, Square’s KeyWhiz, etc.

• Securing access to the source and binary repositories, and auditing access to them.

• Implementing access control across the entire toolchain and disallowing anonymous or shared access to the repos, the continuous integration server, or the confirmation manager.

• Changing the build steps to sign binaries and other build artifacts to secure against tampering.

• Periodically reviewing logs to ensure that they are complete and tracing a change through from start to finish. Also, ensuring that the records are immutable and cannot be erased or forged.

• Ensuring the monitoring of all these systems as part of the production environment.

Through constant monitoring and taking these management steps, the DevOps pipeline is engaged in a continuous harmony towards a more secure platform. Indeed, tool cantered measures are essential, but taking considering the workforce into consideration also calls for equal care.

Also Read

How can Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning Help with DevOps?
The 5 Best Practices for DevOps in the Cloud

The 5 Best Practices for DevOps in the Cloud

The 5 Best Practices for DevOps in the Cloud

The Cloud is known for offering scaling and automated provisioning facilities to accommodate potential changes that can affect applications. DevOps is used for streamlining an application’s progress so that user requirements can be mapped according to the appropriate application production queues.

Even though DevOps is considered to be a helpful tool, IT Engineers tend to utilize them in the wrong way; it can be rightly said that this is just due to the lack of study and understanding in the field of DevOps. Individuals who are skilled in the nuances of the IT sector don’t necessarily understand the correct functionality of DevOps and its powers in the world of technology.

Implementation of 5 Common Practices

Rely on Security For Your Cloud
It is common that security standards are permitted to change on a regular basis in the cloud. Usually, one can integrate different types of technologies, such as identity-based security models, to enhance security within the cloud.

However, security also needs to be extended to the organization and the individual DevOps tools, which will lead to the creation of a secured cloud; this can go a long way in keeping organizational processes safe at all times.

It’s important to understand that there is never enough security. In some way, there is always another way to add an extra layer of protection without affecting the existing security structure. It is even helpful to employ a security officer, whose job focus will be on monitoring security within the DevOps process, in conjunction with the cloud.

Choose DevOps Tools That Work with Multiple Cloud Systems
Due to the integration of technology over the past three to four decades, a collection of development has led the computing and technology industry towards more advanced software development.

Today, IT specialists and engineers, along with coders, are in remarkably high demand. In fact, obtaining a qualification in these fields will almost ensure you a high profile career; however, it doesn’t come without its own set of challenges.

DevOps is quite challenging to understand; it forms a part of a much higher public cloud provider, which can be tedious to follow. It’s never a good idea to lock your process knowledge and applications on a single platform within the cloud. In fact, applications should be established on various cloud platforms for safety purposes – this way, one can ensure maximum security within both public and private clouds.

Integrate Automated Performance Testing
On many occasions, performance issues don’t get recognized in time, which causes cloud users to discover and report them after a lag in time. Since the cloud is considered to be such a large storage platform, this isn’t a sound methodology to follow. Regular performance testing is a necessary component of application design, which works towards preventing such issues from occurring.

One can enhance the production of poor-performing apps by automating and testing their performance on a regular basis. During this process, the idea is to ensure that the existing testing procedures for user interfaces and APIs are stable and accurate at all times.

Consider Using Containers
Applications can be enhanced by making use of containers, which are both well-managed and portable for your convenience – you could integrate them into the relevant DevOps or Cloud strategy to bring out the best out of each application. One can also consider making use of cluster management, security, and any orchestration tools that might prove to be advantageous to you in the long run.

Deploying containers for building applications won’t always work; however, it’s important to keep trying to garner any advantages one can gain through the use of technology.

Make Applications Cloud-Native
Use your Cloud platform and the infrastructure wisely and choose to design applications that don’t have to rely on any physical resources. Understand the efficiency involved in the deployment and overall development stages of all apps, as well as their underlying resources in the cloud. Chances are, you can improve your overall performance by 70%; this, in turn, will save your organization money as your resources will be far more efficient, thereby, allowing your organization to garner monetary savings on a monthly basis.

By implementing these five practices for DevOps in the Cloud, you’ll be able to integrate the two more efficiently, allowing for ultimate success.

Also Read

The Future of Machine Learning
How Artificial Intelligence Transforming Finance Industry
Artificial Intelligence to Make DevOps More Effective
How Big Data Is Changing the Financial Industry

DevOps World | Jenkins World Event 2018

Devops World | Jenkins World Event 2018
Event Details:TRANSFORM your software delivery processes – attend DevOps World | Jenkins World!
In 2018, we bring together the DevOps community in two locations, providing expanded opportunities to learn, explore, network and help shape the future of DevOps and Jenkins. DevOps World | Jenkins World is designed specifically for IT executives, DevOps practitioners, Jenkins users and partners.

DevOps World | Jenkins World will attract over 2,500 attendees this year, from all over the globe. They’ll get expanded content from over 100+ workshops, training opportunities and sessions covering software automation, DevOps culture, performance measurement, security and more.

[Know more about the Conference]

About Idexcel: Idexcel is a Professional Services and Technology Solutions provider specializing in Cloud Services, Application Modernization, and Data Analytics. Idexcel is proud that for more than 20 years it has provided services that implement complex technologies that are innovative, agile and successful and have provided our customers with lasting value.

Anand Allolankandy – (Sr. Director Technical Sales & Delivery at Idexcel) will be attending this event. For further queries, please write to anand@idexcel.com