We all know that the software development process is complex, and it's common for companies to run into challenges. These may right from having limited resources, communication gaps, integration issues, testing and quality assurance, secure compliance, and tight deadlines. The list is endless. But there are many ways to overcome these challenges and make your software development more efficient and effective.
One way to do so is with DevOps automation tools. A DevOps approach to software development provides a solid framework to bridge the gap between development and operations teams and improve software delivery's speed, quality, and efficiency.
We have assembled the best DevOps automation tools companies can harness to drive cost, quality, effort, and time efficiencies to optimize their software development process. Let us learn all about DevOps Automation Tools and which one you should consider.
What are DevOps Automation Tools?
Simply put, in a world where software is everywhere, DevOps tools are essential for creating and delivering software faster than ever before. It is a software tool that helps automate and streamline the various stages of the software development lifecycle (SDLC), from planning and coding to testing, deployment, and monitoring.
These tools help cross-functional teams to deliver software faster and more efficiently by facilitating collaboration, automating repetitive tasks, and providing visibility into the development process. However, there are many DevOps tools, each with its specific purpose and functionality, that one should know. For example:
- Source code management tools (e.g., Git) help manage source code changes and facilitate collaboration among developers.
- Continuous integration/continuous delivery (CI/CD) tools (e.g., Jenkins, Circle CI) - these tools automate software building, testing, and deployment, allowing for faster and more frequent releases.
- Configuration management tools (e.g., Ansible, Puppet) help automate the deployment and management of infrastructure and software configurations.
- Containerization and orchestration tools (e.g., Docker, Kubernetes) help manage and deploy containerized applications and services.
- Monitoring and logging tools (e.g., Prometheus, ELK stack) provide real-time insights into the health and performance of the software and infrastructure.
The Best DevOps Automation Tools you should lean on:
Here are some of the most popular and widely used DevOps automation tools you can look at basis your specific needs, budget, and technical requirements.
Jenkins is a widely used open-source continuous integration and continuous delivery (CI/CD) automation tool. It is highly customizable and offers integrations with many other DevOps tools and platforms. You can use Jenkins as a simple CL server and a delivery hub for any project. It's easy to install and configure. They do also have fly error checks along with built-in help. You can also find hundreds of the plugins in the Update part.
Ansible is an open-source automation tool that simplifies the configuration management and deployment of software applications, IT infrastructure, and network devices. It facilitates ease of use and can automate repetitive tasks, orchestrate complex tasks, and manage IT infrastructure at scale.
It is based on a push architecture, meaning an Ansible control node pushes commands and configurations to one or more managed nodes over SSH or other protocols. It uses YAML syntax to define tasks, roles, and playbooks, which are the building blocks of Ansible automation.
One of the critical benefits of Ansible is its agentless architecture, which means that no software needs to be installed on the managed nodes. This simplifies the deployment and management of Ansible itself and reduces the overhead of managing the managed nodes.
Kubernetes is a DevOps automation tool of an open-source container orchestration platform and is used to automate the deployment, scaling, and management of containerized applications. Initially, Google created it, but the CNCF (Cloud Native Computing Foundation) now maintains it.
Kubernetes provides a framework for running and managing containerized applications across a cluster of nodes. It allows developers to easily deploy, scale, and update applications while providing infrastructure teams with a centralized platform for managing the underlying resources.
Kubernetes uses a declarative configuration model, meaning that users define the system's desired state, and Kubernetes automatically makes changes to the system to match that state. This allows Kubernetes to manage the system’s state and handle failures without user intervention.
The following DevOps automation tool is Docker. It provides the tools for developers to build, ship, and run any application as a lightweight, portable, self-sufficient container that will run virtually anywhere. It’s an open-source engine that automates the deployment of applications inside software containers.
It provides tools and APIs for building and managing containers, including a container runtime, a container registry, and a command-line interface. Docker allows developers to deploy their applications consistently across different environments, including development, testing, and production, by packaging them into containers.
The primary and essential benefit of Docker is its portability. Docker containers can run on any system that supports the Docker runtime, regardless of the underlying operating system or hardware architecture. This makes it easy to develop, test, and deploy applications across various environments, from laptops to cloud servers.
GitLab is an open-source web-based Git repository manager that provides source code management (SCM), continuous integration/continuous delivery (CI/CD), and issue-tracking features. Users can install GitLab on-premises or use it as a hosted service.
GitLab is built on top of Git, the popular distributed version control system, and provides a range of features for managing Git repositories, including code reviews, branching, merging, and issue tracking. GitLab also offers a range of collaboration features, including code reviews, merge requests, and issue tracking.
GitLab has become a popular platform for software development, and both start-ups and enterprises widely adopted it.
Splunk is used by a wide range of organizations, from small start-ups to large enterprises, to gain insights into their IT systems and infrastructure.
Splunk is a software platform that provides real-time operational intelligence by collecting, indexing, and analyzing machine-generated data from various sources. It allows organizations to gain insights from the data generated by their IT systems, applications, and infrastructure.
It provides a flexible and scalable architecture for collecting and indexing data from various sources, including logs, metrics, and events. Splunk's indexing and search capabilities allow users to search and analyze large volumes of data in real-time quickly. Its visualization features make it easy to create dashboards and reports. Moreover, it provides advanced analytics and machine-learning features for detecting anomalies, identifying patterns, and predicting future events.
Terraform is an open-source infrastructure-as-code (IaC) tool that allows developers to manage declaratively and provision infrastructure resources. Terraform can manage resources across multiple cloud providers, including AWS, Azure, and Google Cloud Platform, as well as on-premises infrastructure.
Terraform uses a domain-specific language (DSL) to describe the desired state of infrastructure resources, such as servers, databases, and networks. Terraform then uses this configuration to create and manage the resources, ensuring that the actual state of the infrastructure matches the desired shape.
One of the critical benefits of Terraform is its ability to provide infrastructure as code, which allows developers to version and manage infrastructure resources in the same way they work code. Developers can use Terraform to collaborate on infrastructure changes, track, audit, and roll them back if necessary.
How to choose the right DevOps Automation tool?
A DevOps automation tool is not a one-size-fits-all solution. There are a few tried and tested tools in the market, but each organization has unique requirements, problems, and goals. So, how do you choose the right DevOps Automation tool? The solution is to stay focused and aware of your specific needs as an organization and the problems you want to solve with DevOps automation. Then look for tools that address those needs and align with your organizational goals.
Also, choose a tool that can scale as your organization grows—one that can handle large volumes of data, traffic, and users. Along with these factors, consider cost factors like licensing fees, maintenance, support, flexible pricing models, and the value for money they offer!
Also Read - Best DevSecOps Tools
Agile processes are a critical foundational element of DevOps methodology, and DevOps automation tools play a crucial role in producing high-quality code. So, lean on suitable automation tools to help you build a streamlined delivery process and achieve continuous collaboration between your development and operation teams, totally in sync with your organization’s goals.
As we've walked through all the tools available, we would like to leave with one more piece of advice. It doesn't matter how many DevOps Automation tools you have; they're only helpful if your team knows how to use them. Hiring highly skilled DevOps engineers is essential to ensure you get the best of both worlds, i.e., the best tools and resources to manage your software development process. This is where Clarion Technologies is well-positioned to support you. Our pool of highly skilled engineers and our DevOps consulting services will enable you to scale up and increase the efficiency of your business with the proper software development and deployment strategy.