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With the rise of DevOps came automation. After all, the DevOps movement is about simplifying the process of creating and delivering software, boosting teams’ efficiency. When it comes to DevOps automation, the benefits include eliminating performance bottlenecks, automating manual and repetitive tasks in the development process, and increasing team productivity.
Automation trends have changed over the years. Initially, it revolved around automating the build, test, and deployments in CI/CD pipelines. Further down the line, it started to include Infrastructure as Code (IaC) tooling and then Kubernetes, which emphasized automation using declarative systems. Out of these trends, GitOps emerged as an automation model placing Git front and center.
The 2021 Puppet State of DevOps report showcases the percentages of organizations in the low, mid, and high DevOps maturity, with the mid-section taking up the most significant bulk. The report further identifies those in the mid-section as “high-mid,” “middle,” and “low-mid.” An overwhelming majority of the mid- and high-evolution groups agreed that automation improved the quality of the work they do, and their team has automated the most repetitive tasks.
Figure: Automating repetitive tasks - Source: Puppet
In this blog, we will dive deep into what makes and shapes DevOps automation using GitOps and outline some of the benefits organizations can realize with GitOps automation.
Coined by Weaveworks in 2017, the term GitOps describes an operational framework for managing infrastructure and application configurations using Git. Some of DevOps best practices such as IaC, version control, code review, and CI/CD pipelines are practised in GitOps and applied to infrastructure automation.
Placing Git at the heart of delivery pipelines, this framework allows developers and Ops teams to use Git for cluster management and application delivery. It greatly simplifies code creation for the Kubernetes environment, ensuring that developers can focus on creating applications and spend less time configuring and managing Kubernetes clusters.
The creators of GitOps have created a simple guide outlining the principles of GitOps, its benefits, and detailed steps on how to get started with GitOps. You can download this comprehensive ebook for beginners on GitOps here or read our 101 guide on GitOps here.
When it comes to GitOps, Git is the single source of truth. The entire system - infrastructure, code, policies, and configurations - are defined and stored in Git. Every single new change introduced to the system is tracked using Git’s built-in version control capabilities, leaving behind a clear audit trail.
In GitOps, deployments are automated using open-source tools such as Flux or ArgoCD ( software agent). Every time a developer pushes code to the Git repository, this software agent detects this new change, ‘pulls’ this latest change from the new repo, and merges it into the production environment. This eventually leads to tested, vetted, and approved code deployed to the production environment.
Not only does GitOps deploy code, but it also continually checks for configuration drift in the state of the system and automatically alerts on it. When drift is detected, automatic rollbacks can be configured and enforced, or it can be resolved manually via human intervention.
Another GitOps open-source tool, Flagger, takes automation one step further by enabling progressive delivery methods like canary releasing and blue-green deployments.
To learn more about GitOps pull-based deployments and why this approach is intrinsically more secure, check out this blog here. For more information on progressive delivery, check out the article “A Beginner’s Guide to Progressive Delivery.”
Figure: Software Delivery Process with GitOps
Not only does automation with GitOps help DevOps teams, but it benefits the entire organization. GitOps improves performance, boosts developer velocity, and offers increased stability and availability. Let’s explore some of these benefits.
Weave GitOps makes DevOps automation a reality. It’s a full-stack GitOps platform based on the successful open-source projects Flux and Flagger. A continuous delivery tool, Weave GitOps simplifies the software delivery lifecycle following continuous integration. It uses Git for version control, storing declarative infrastructure and applications in a single source of truth.
DevOps teams can build and maintain their GitOps workflows, automating continuous delivery, stage promotions, progressive delivery, and application production and infrastructure management. This way, DevOps and developers can enjoy frictionless deployment processes.
Through Weave GitOps, error checks and drift detection (infrastructure evaluation) are baked in from the start. This minimizes configuration drift and significantly reduces the complexity of running Kubernetes clusters.
Getting started with Weave GitOps can be done easily by running a few simple commands. To read the complete documentation on getting started, check out Weaveworks’ step-by-step guide here. Or you can watch this YouTube video.
DevOps automation with Weave GitOps can provide consistency across repetitive tasks, improve productivity, and provide a more reliable and stable system due to enhanced cross-team collaboration. For more information about Weave GitOps, visit the Weave GitOps product page or contact us for a demo now.
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Automate your deployments with continuous application delivery and GitOps. Read this blog to learn more.