A Simple Guide to Open DevOps

DevOps can accelerate getting business value from software. Features and bug fixes move to production faster, allowing feedback to come quicker and development cycles to be shorter. But to truly benefit from all that DevOps offers, you, your team, your tools, and the cloud environment you use need to support it.

DevOps is a set of tools, philosophies, and best practices that increase an organization's ability to deliver applications and services faster. It's a vague and broad definition, but that precisely shows DevOps's nature. Rather than simply a collection of products, tools, and roles, DevOps is a mindset on how to approach both the development (Dev) work and the operations (Ops) in a way that maximizes efficiency. Implement it well, and DevOps can solve many issues.

But needs and capabilities differ from company to company, which can prove challenging, especially for smaller organizations that cannot form units that exclusively support their core development teams. 

The basics of DevOps

Openness is crucial, as vendor lock-in, price hikes, and even termination of services that don't bring in a profit are serious risks better to avoid. Luckily, it is easy to point to several components common to every effective DevOps pipeline. And even better: these components are available as open software.

So what does a DevOps team need?

  • First of all, it needs a repository for version control. The highly iterative way of working, all the branching, and the many pull requests that come with DevOps mean that changes need to be tracked automatically. A popular hosted Git repository is GitLab due to its extensive integration and automation options.  
  • Automated testing comes next. The need for this directly results from how DevOps teams work—constantly adding code to existing applications in production. But no one wants to test manually every time they add something new. It would slow down the process to a crawl. So GitLab and other tools offer the feature to trigger an automatic test after every pull request. If the tests are well designed and passed, there is little risk of continuing with packaging.  
  • And packaging is another thing you want to have automated. Container technology like Docker is now often used for this, and those images need to be stored. A repository like Harbor works nicely here.  
  • Finally, Continuous Deployment is a cornerstone of DevOps. Since deployments are much more common than before, container management with Kubernetes has become crucial to DevOps. With Kubernetes, all successfully tested and approved additions are automatically added to the application without taking it offline.  

An effective DevOps Cloud is flexible, scalable and reliable… and open.

An effective DevOps Cloud is flexible, scalable, reliable, and open.  
DevOps can only work well if the platform is fully customizable to the team's needs. The platform Leafcloud offers is fully programmable and is dedicated to supporting DevOps teams that want to pursue an open strategy. It includes a Kubernetes service, scalable volumes, object storage, load balances, and instances that can be started and stopped on demand. The infrastructure is based entirely in the Netherlands and uses every energy-saving trick in the book. And most of the server-generated heat is reused for other purposes. 

Crucially, Leafcloud is run by passionate DevOps experts who offer their advice and knowledge to let you select the best solutions and tools that fit your software development activities. Contact our team at info@leaf.cloud to find out more.