DevOps Engineer has become an emotion and not just a job profile. People from all sorts of professions are willing to get their hands dirty and make a shift to this career as a DevOps engineer. Apart from the buzzword bingo, DevOps holds a unique position in the software field, even though many technologies evolved over time and vanished, this path doesn't seem like it will disappear very soon. DevOps is here to stay, and we will witness a large number of companies embracing this approach sooner or later.
DevOps is a process that emphasizes communication and learning from a technical standpoint between software developers and IT professionals, like dev and ops, managing production environments, while automating the deployment of software and infrastructure changes with utmost care and collaboration. At the core, DevOps means combining development and operations into one unified team so that continuous process of learning, knowledge sharing, and shared responsibilities happen seamlessly between the two.
The idea of DevOps grew out of the Agile methodology and first gained attention in 2009.
Many departments in the companies are usually siloed and carry their own procedures. Especially when it comes to a software powered organization, Devs will have no idea what is happening with Ops and vice versa, and it creates a lot of confusion among the teams and impacts the overall company growth and individual productivity. The idea of DevOps is to bridge the gap between development and operations to support other departments, so the workflow within the organization is smooth. This allows companies to fail early and learn early and thereby quickly deliver software features and security updates. The ultimate goal of DevOps is to bring products faster to the market with more quality and reliability.
DevOps is a cultural phenomenon rather than an individual job role. It is more of a team sport and can't be done alone. So, contradicting my own statement, there is no concept of DevOps engineer, it is just that firms have created this role for their understanding.
But having the understanding of all the DevOps tools like Docker, GitHub, Kubernetes, Terraform, Ansible, Puppet, etc is necessary because that is what companies are looking for when hiring a DevOps engineer.
But most of all, it is all about learning the DevOps culture and framework rather than tools. Most people might also stress the automation aspect, it is not all about automation. DevOps engineers should have a basic knowledge of scripting, programming, and framework. People coming from other departments to DevOps should understand what developers are trying to do in the development phase and then how they are managing the versions of their code, how they are testing, integrating them, and deploying them to servers and finally, how end users are getting the software to use. Once they understand how things are done theoretically and manually with no automation tools, the concepts will get clear and easier.
In Addition to this, Ops knowledge is also necessary to become good in DevOps. A DevOps engineer, not only writes code or automates but he also has to know other related aspects too, for example
- Scripting and Linux basics
- Knowledge of different cloud providers
- Knowledge of how software development life cycle works (SDLC)
- Familiarity with source control and versioning and tools like GitHub & Bitbucket
- Experience with building tools
- Artifacts management tools like JFrog artifactory & Sonatype
- Infrastructure design and microservices
- Better communication skills
- Automation testing skills
- Understanding about infrastructure as code
- Troubleshooting skills
- Understanding the concepts of CI/CD and tools
- Knowledge of DevOps pipeline and how it works
- Knowing how systems scale - Horizontal scaling and vertical scaling
- Virtualization concepts
- Understanding of different DevOps success metrics like deployment frequency, lead time to change, change failure rate, time to restore services back, etc
- Containerization concepts and tools like Docker
- Container orchestration and tools like Kubernetes
- Software release cycle and management
Continuous integration (CI), as the name itself suggests, focuses on combining the work of individual developers together into a repository or a codebase to streamline the continuous efforts. This can be done several times a day; the primary objective is to enable early detection of integration bugs and also to allow for tighter cohesion and more smoother development collaboration. The goal of CI is to quickly make sure a new code change from a developer is good and suitable for further use in the codebase.
The aim of continuous delivery (CD) is to minimize the friction points that are inherent in the deployment phases. Typically, a team's implementation involves automating each of the steps to build deployments so that a safe code release can be done at any moment in time.
Continuous delivery is the repetitive practice of building, testing, and making delivering improvements to software codebase with the help of automated tools. The key result of the continuous delivery (CD) is the code that is always in a deployable state.
Many people confuse between the two, continuous delivery and continuous deployment, whereas both are different in the DevOps space.
Continuous deployment is a DevOps process in which a much higher degree of automation is involved, where a build/deployment occurs automatically whenever a major change is made to the code. Here, developer code changes are automatically detected and prepared for a release to production instantly.
The problem is, very rarely companies hire freshers to work as DevOps engineers but that being said, there is a huge skills gap in the industry. Firms struggle to hire a good DevOps candidate and they often fail because of the scarcity of talent.
Listing down below some resources and courses you can opt-in to move into DevOps career path,
- Read the book ‘The Pheonix Project’
- Take this free DevOps pre-requisite course
- Watch this video by Rackspace that explains the meaning of DevOps in simple English
- Read these interesting answers on Quora by experts on becoming a good DevOps engineer
- Watch and learn side by side with this Docker for beginners full free course by Mumshad (One of the top Udemy instructors)
- Follow these 100 DevOps influencers on Twitter
- Join Developer community forums like dev.to, Hashnode, Dzone, DevOps subreddit, Stackoverflow, DevOps StackExchange, Changelog, etc
DevOps is taking the center stage and as we have mentioned before, it is becoming the epitome of software development. DevOps engineers are one of the highest-paid professionals in the world and this is the demanding tech job currently around the world. DevOps is a good career path and a proper plan and approach will get you a good job but once you get into it, it is highly recommended to always keep learning since the DevOps space is always evolving and new tools are emerging day by day.
BTW, sometimes it can be difficult to get hired as a DevOps engineer without any prior work experience or knowledge of different tools and automation techniques, we at KodeKloud have come up with a simple idea of helping you gain free DevOps work experience by solving real DevOps problems and challenges, with which you can get hired for DevOps role.
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