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  • Writer's picturekyle Hailey

DevOps and Databases?

I’m super looking forward to next weeks DevOps Enterprise Summit in San Francisco. You might ask “Why?!” since I’m a database guy and not a DevOps guy.  I can understand that reaction.

I don’t know about you, but when I hear the term DevOps I have to roll my eyes and think “oh, the latest greatest tech industry buzzword.” So why would I as a DBA care about DevOps? With DevOps, as with most tech industry buzzwords, there is actually a worthy idea at the kernel. The kernel of DevOps has two parts.

  1. communication

  2. automation

The first part is changing company culture seeking to improve communication, understanding, empathy and create bridges between teams in different silos in development and operations to improve efficiencies. The second part of DevOps is using the best methods and tools to enable automation. With better communication between groups including fast feedback loops to track the impact of changes quickly and automated tools to rollout changes quickly DevOps can profoundly improve the efficiency of companies.

How can a DBA help bring DevOps culture to a company 

It’s true though, that the best tools will have no effect if there is not a culture in place that can adopt the new tools. On the other hand the best culture can only go so far with out the best tools. Introducing tools and methods is often the best way to facilitate making changes in culture. What is the best tool that a DBA can bring to his organization that facilitates not only automation but to improve communication and culture. That tool is data virtualization.

Why is data virtualization key to DevOps and databases?

First what is the goal of DevOps? It’s to improve efficiencies by bringing development closer to operations, i.e. IT. Bringing Dev and Ops closer together means better communication, better understanding and more efficient interactions. What kind of interactions do Dev and Ops have? Well developers are creating new applications and features that have to be deployed into production. In order to create and deploy applications, developers require copies of the production environment. The hardest part of creating a copy of the production environment is creating a copy of the production database. The database is the largest amount of data in the environments and also the most complicated part to copy as it requires special tools and procedures to copy. The copies often require masking which leads to more complexity. All of this means that making copies of databases becomes the bottleneck in development and production deployment. To deploy applications into production requires thorough QA testing of code and not only testing of code but testing of the actual rollout process. All of this QA and testing requires more environments and again.

As Gene Kim author on The Phoenix Project said, the number one bottleneck in application development is supplying development and QA environments.

What if with one simple stroke one could provide all the environments they wanted at the push of a button for almost no storage and the interface was so simple with secure logons that developers and QA could provision, rollback, refresh, bookmark, rewind full environments themselves. Thats what Delphix does. Simply bringing in Delphix makes a paradigm shift easy. Yes, Dev and Ops still have to work together to adopt the processes that Delphix provides but when the processes are so powerful and  so easy then shifting company culture becomes possible. Shifting Dev and Ops to DevOps even becomes possible in the largest of enterprise companies which are the most daunting cultures to bring into the DevOps movement.

After bring in Delphix to a 100 of the Fortune 500 we’ve seen case after case of application development teams doubling output, reducing bugs and creating higher quality code.

If you are at DevOps Enterprise Summit next week come visit the Delphix booth and stop by and say “hi” and find out how Delphix can eliminate the biggest constraints in application development and put a jet pack on your projects.

Kicking off the summit will be Gene Kim (IT Revolution) + Steve Brodie (Electric Cloud)!

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