You’re probably wondering what the classic cue for a film take has to do with DevOps. Well in fact there are many similarities between it and continuous software delivery. But before we go into movie making let’s set the stage. The emergence of big data, cloud and mobility to address today's business challenges is driving a proliferation of new applications on top of the core business applications from vendors such as SAP, Microsoft and Oracle. As a consequence, IT environments are becoming much more complex, more diverse, delivered across multiple form factors … and they are becoming even more interconnected and interdependent.
Now, DevOps plays a critical role in addressing the execution gap between the innovation seekers and those delivering the application innovation. It’s imperative to resolve this gap when you consider that nearly 50% of applications are rolled back after they are released to production. This problem is further exacerbated by the fact that minor code changes can take several weeks to be released to customers.
The good news is that IBM has developed a blueprint for continuous delivery of software innovation that helps resolve the execution gap. This is achieved by expanding the traditional notion of DevOps to unite customers, business owners and IT teams (development and operations) in a continuous feedback loop that balances quality, cost and speed. The result is higher productivity, quicker time to value and happier customers.
Looking under the DevOps covers you’ll see that lights are critical for continuous software delivery. These lights enable the developer to determine what is needed on the set prior to application deployment – essentially establishing the underlying environment.
With Continuous Release & Deployment, developers can request an application environment from the service catalog and provision and configure the servers and middleware to automate deployments and manage releases for test and production.
So the lights are turned on but you now need a camera to see the entire stage and zoom in on certain aspects of the set. The problem is that not all cameras are created equally and many don’t have the right lenses to provide both a micro and macro view of the environment. Similarly, many organizations today are managing their mission-critical applications in a fragmented manner with highly customized management solutions which lack automation and visibility across the complex landscape. The impact of a fragmented, incomplete service management strategy is staggering. Organizations are unable to assure service levels which leads to significant business disruptions that manifest themselves in multiple ways including lost revenue, customer dissatisfaction, and compliance/regulatory issues.
By driving visibility across the stage, organizations are able to truly transform their business and provide Continuous Monitoring across their entire infrastructure. Developer and IT operations teams are able to better understand the performance and availability of their applications and early feedback lowers cost of errors and change, and helps steer projects toward successful completion.
The lights are shining, the camera is turned on and the director yells out action! Scene 1 is taking place but the director notices that the lead actor just screwed up one word of his first line. Or perhaps one of the stage props fell during the shoot. No problem….the prop is reset, the actor gets his lines right and take 2 is successful.
In the DevOps domain, Continuous Feedback and Optimization is embedded into the structure so that problems are resolved fast and customer expectations are met. Collaborative incident management enables operations teams to check the status of defects affecting production, and to instantly notify development teams of problems found in production for faster resolution.
DevOps enables organizations to seize new market opportunities by quickly and efficiently deploying software innovation. This is achieved by embedding lights, camera and action into the architecture ie continuous deployment, monitoring and optimization. This continuous feedback loop helps drive quicker time to value of software and higher quality which in turn translates to improved customer satisfaction.