Like everything on earth, DevOps comes from somewhere. It’s a unique place, event, with people at the root of this term or concept. DevOps has an origin, and knowing it can always be a plus to understand what this whole term represents. In this article you could learn all the essential tales of the genesis of DevOps. We will not only jump into DevOps’ history, but will equally have a look at the evolution of software development. This will offer you a clear insight of why DevOps inevitably came to its existence.
Origin and definition of DevOps
It’s important to note that before DevOps, there’s no direct link between software development and operations. On one side developers developed apps, and the other, operations will implement what came from the developers. Not much collaboration & communication existed between both sides, working in silos. Problems arising between both sides where the main reason used to be lack of communication. With the birth of DevOps, this changed. DevOps created a communication bridge between software developers and IT Operations.
The term publicly originated from Patrick Debois and Kris Buytaert who working together, came to notice a movement around the topic. They both spearheaded the first ever European DevOps days in 2009. Debois and Buytaert set up the first ever official DevOps conference in Gent, Belgium. With an audience of close to 70 people, this first conference served as the catalyst that prompted a series of worldwide conferences. This officially gave birth to the term DevOps.
DevOps from the beginning till now
It all began with the developers, working for over 6 months to deliver products. Quality control (QA) engineers will wait for the development team to give the green light to execute end user test. If the product was ok, then it moved on to the next step (packaging, end user). In the contrary, it will be sent back to the development team for adjustment. The cycle will go on till the product was good for use.
Then the Internet followed. It was the era of the “soft” copy. Eliminating all physical media and manual paper costs. At the same time, it offered customers instant access to the latest software.
Hotfix joined the party, and end users became greedy. Needless for end users to wait for 6 months to see a bug in their software fixed. Hotfixes required much shorter production timeframe, at much higher rate. Agile and scum were introduced to provide shorter and more frequent development cycles.
Two more epochs were experienced in the software evolution, “Web Application and Network Ops” era, and “The Brick Wall” era. The latter is one of the most important epochs that led to DevOps. The brick wall period was just like a volleyball game between developers and IT operators. The software developers will issue a product across the net to the operations. The IT operators in their turn will hit back a response over the net to the software developers. The response will mean, “Try again”, “fix something” or “not good enough”. Developers considered this as a hamper to innovation. Whereas for operations it was reckless, disrespecting how apps function in the real world. Distrust came in, slowing down the development process.
In summary, DevOps arises from the drawbacks of the past. Hence, its history is a clear source to its successful adoption.