07/05/2017 Continuous integration is a powerful and necessary process and the heart of DevOps. It enables a developer to dip into modern delivery pipeline without complicating or risking creating out delivery and deployment all at once.
THE POWER OF CONTINUOUS INTEGRATION
Continuous delivery and deployment steals the show in DevOps talks. However, the reality is that delivery and deployment are not for every business, nor they are widely adopted already. To move on to the deployment and delivery, organizations should get CI or continuous integration right, unless they were built from day one with the DevOps framework and do not have to fit the processes into current environments. The power of continuous integration is that it enables one to dip the toe in the modern delivery pipeline without risking or complicating building out delivery and deployment at once and with the possibility of failure.
THE MODERN APPROACH FOR HIGHER QUALITY RELEASES
The need to ship code faster remains a priority for software development teams wherever they may be. As a matter of fact, a recent survey report reveals 46 percent of developers as well as testing professional’s state that they want to deploy software much faster than they currently could. DevOps emerged as the modern approach in driving more often, higher quality releases. What makes it different from traditional approaches to development is the focus on people first. It takes people to create a robust software development engine. However, only when teams communicate deliberately could enterprises embrace the contemporary practices of continuous integration, continuous deployment and delivery. The tools and processes all share the component of taking code automatically upon the developer’s commit and move into an environment for testing, staging, integration or production. Together, they’re at the heart of what’s called as the DevOps practice.
CONTINUOUS INTEGRATION PAVES THE WAY TO DEVOPS
Continuous integration or CI provides a necessary and valuable component for development teams to pave the way to DevOps. Above all else, CI is a process. It takes code and deploys it upon each commit to what is an integration environment, a set of infrastructure wherein the whole app stack runs. It’s a place wherein all automated and functional testing could be run that’s non-production and does not have an impact on the user base. The integration part of CI means that all components of the app come together in a single location. Continuous means that the builds happen automatically and regularly. A build serves the procedure of putting together source code and then verify that the software works as a cohesive unit. Continuous integration not only fits into companies with minimal disruption, it also provides great value, by virtue of the fact that it don’t pose threat to production. CI offers a safe environment and processes needed for testing even unstable app versions as part of a bigger unit. After creation of feature, CI is indeed the most opportunistic software development element. It empowers testing teams to go further than the standard test suite of common, typical functionality and grows the test cases to include very recent function and exploratory testing of course. This is a simultaneous testing process, and test design, testing which evolves with the app and thus results in expanded test coverage. It also gives a chance for developers to implement that feature they have always wanted, but were afraid of trying due to risk of failure. Developers now could try functionality rapidly against the whole stack without having to worry on slowing down releases or building issues that affect production.
BENEFITS OF CONTINUOUS INTEGRATION
The benefits of continuous integration are great. It could provide increased volume release, provide room for innovation and positive impact on the development pipeline through improved quality and efficiency of software. When able to test and ensure that all software pieces fit with each other, one could realistically speed up a cohesive, solid and quality product. This way, continuous integration serves as a necessary, natural step in the development of a true DevOps practices. Additionally, it should be correctly executed before any other aspect of DevOps could be implemented.
CONTINUOUS INTEGRATION, THE CORNERSTONE OF DEVOPS
CI is the cornerstone of DevOps. The continual merging prevents a local copy of the developer’s software from drifting too far away as new code is added by others, avoiding disastrous merge conflicts. In practice, continuous integration involves a centralized server, which pulls together all changes of new source code continually as developers commit them and builds software app from scratch, informing the team of any failure in the process. DevOps takes the agile principle and expands their scope, acknowledging that ensuring high development quality needs continual engagement and feedback from different technical experts, such as QA and operations specialists. CI is a form of extreme transparency that ensures that all project stakeholders could monitor, engage and contribute positively to the software project that is continually evolving without disrupting the team with refocusing efforts or constant meetings.
Continuous integration has indeed evolved and has become the heart of DevOps development.
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