2014/02/10

Book review: Continuous Delivery and DevOps: A Quickstart Guide

Introduction



I wanted to know more about DevOps because I agree with the fact that we need to coorporate more and remove the barriers between departments. In the end I was a little disappointed by this book. It gives some high level tools and techniques but it could be much more ...

In my opinion a change would be that someone from Operations will really participate within the project team and looks at it from an operation point of view. This way also these requirements will be taken into account and the system will be more easy to operate.
However there were also some interesting chapters so lets review.

Chapters

The book contains 7 chapters:
  1. Evolution of a Software House
  2. No pain, No gain
  3. Plan of Attack
  4. Tools and Technical Approaches
  5. Culture and Behaviors
  6. Hurdles to Look Out For
  7. Measuring Success and Remaining Successful

Chapter 1 - Evolution of a Software House

As the name already suggests, this chapter is about the evolution of a software house. First it is a small company with no hierarchy and everybody knows each other. This makes communication easy and the releases of the software are coming fast. It is fun to work within such companies. But then it begins to grow and processes are needed. This is the beginning of a slow working company.

Chapter 2 - No pain, no gain

This is a chapter about organizational change. Investigate what is going wrong. It discusses some tools and techniques how to investigate the organization.
In my opinion not really about DevOps but more on change management.

Chapter 3 - Plan of Attack

This is again a change management chapter in which is explained how to communicate a new way of working. Setting the goal and visions and communicating this within your organization.

Chapter 4 - Tools and Technical approaches

This is an interesting chapter about the tools and techniques you can use to implement DevOps. To name a few:
  • Source control tools
  • Code reviews
  • Continuous Integration
  • Small increments
  • Test Driven Development
  • Automatic builds and testing
  • Architecturing the solution (loose coupling)
  • Provisioning
But then again these are just the tools and techniques development should already been using, when developing quality software. 

Chapter 5 - Culture and Behaviors

This is a chapter about the soft side of DevOps. It discusses about:
  • Openness
  • Building trust
  • Collaboration
  • Rewarding good behavior
  • Transparency

Chapter 6 - Hurdles to Look Out For

A chapter about change management and about some theoretical change curve theory.

Chapter 7 - Measuring Success and Remaining Successful

This chapter discusses some tools to measure. To name a few:
  • Code Coverage
  • Code complexity
  • Commit rates
  • Unused Code
  • Coding rules
  • System monitoring
So also the things I would normally recommend.

Conclusions

The book was easy to read, but a lot about change management. Don't get me wrong, this is very important but there are other books about this subject. There were however some interesting chapters.
Some eye-openers within the book for me:
  • DevOps has impact on many departments: marketing, planning, development, operations, sales and HR.
  • DevOps = Working Together, DevOps != Getting developers do the operations tasks
  • Monitor the progress of the DevOps project


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