From Terraform to DevOps: A Modern Revolution

Before we can even begin to dive into Terraform best practices, we need to take a step back and look at the modern-day revolution that is DevOps. A long, long time ago (actually, more like 10 years ago), it was once an IT tradition to have two separate teams in an organization: the development and operations teams. The development team was tasked with handling the code and design, as well as making sure the right product was deployed with functional code. On the other side of the office was the operations team, who were exclusively tasked with checking the operation of the code, its performance, and creating bug reports to fix errors. As with many silos, unnecessary workflows were created, with one team unnecessarily pushing code to the other due to communication gaps. Eventually, a new process was created: DevOps.

DevOps is a process that merges the two teams, their practices, and tools, ensuring that an organization may deliver the product at a rapid pace without compromising on the quality of the product.

Over the years, this simple process has improved and revolutionized the complete development process of a product. While initially created to remove the communication differences between the two teams, it has now transformed into a very widely used, continuous concept right from planning the product, all the way to production and then for change releases.

It’s key to remember that DevOps is about people, process, and how those operational processes can create value for developers. Another key takeaway: teams lose their most precious resource, time, when DevOps isn’t implemented or is implemented badly.

While DevOps isn’t only a set of tools, there are some helpful tools when it comes to DevOps:

  1. Git: A developer’s best friend to track source code and changes
  2. Docker: Looking to build a containerized app? Here’s your answer.
  3. Selenium: Browser automation for testing
  4. Jenkin: Open-source automation for Continuous Integration
  5. Ansible: Automate IT and infrastructure
  6. Puppet: Open-source configuration management

These tools create the foundation for the conversation.

Terraform Best Practices: DevOps or Tools?

Should you embrace DevOps or Terraform first? Whenever such a question comes up in an engineer’s mind or in an organization, it is always important to remember that Terraform is just a tool, while DevOps is a complete process that involves skilled people. If you as an engineer or as an organization do not understand and accept DevOps first, irrespective of which tool you use, the chances of failing are higher. Therefore, when you plan to move towards DevOps as your development process, you should understand and embrace the process first and then the tool that you will be using. For a complete breakdown of Terraform best practices, check out our recent blog post “5 Pieces of Advice: Terraform Best Practices” to go more in-depth.

#devops #infrastructure-as-code #terraform

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