As an anecdotal definition, Continuous Delivery (CD) represents; a software engineering approach that utilizes DevOps methodologies to create short-cycle product development.
At a practical level, the goal is to ensure that necessary elements within a given engineering chain are reliably and quickly integrated, thereby leading to the release of enterprise products on-demand. CD is most usually applied in direct concert with upstream development associated with Continuous Integration (CI), and consequently serves as a useful way to complete an end-to-end production sequence.
Essential characteristics of Continuous Delivery include:
The utilization of CD calls for the employment of code containers as a core element. The approach allows engineers to develop features, processes or other required bits on the basis of serialized micro-code. The advent makes the entire creation chain faster and more dependable.
Ready replication further enhances CD during testing, staging; or when container clusters are validated and/or pushed to final production. The characteristic also applies as a support mechanism in the event that direct remedial work is necessary.
This attribute primarily relates to an ability to clearly control and manipulate holistic process elements in real-time. This means that managers and developers are able to validate, and/or correct code conflicts when they are small. The practical consequences are reductions in overall time-to-complete and enhancements in final quality assurance metrics.
The DevOps/CD matrix calls for the intrinsic application of automation. The upside is that these systems are intrinsically defined to take advantage of various feature sets including real-time monitoring. The effect is enhanced stability throughout the development complex.
Useful systems metrics:
Similar to developmental values regarding real-time monitoring, configurator-enabled CD systems create clearly identified and actionable metrics, that engineering teams leverage as necessary. The end result produces better stability from the outset of a project, thereby producing already-ruggedized work products at the back end of a development evolution.
Drives positive alterations in business culture:
The DevOps/CD matrix calls for intrinsic collaboration, clarity, and simplicity. These hallmarks tend to be entirely subsumed by an engineering cadre over time, leading to better, faster and more cost-effective work products.
Mitigates single-product-at-a-time thinking:
In concert with changes in business culture due to the DevOps/CD matrix as a central development driver, its streamlined nature also fosters an ability to create more products, faster than ever before. This value point is particularly useful given today’s highly-active competitive climate.
Enables easily-controlled production/test regimes:
Because the DevOps/CD construct and automated scripting, directly supported by robust configurators drives development clarity end-to-end, follow-on production and test evolutions are easily understood and validated. The result offers built-in quality assurance throughout, while at the same time, creating significant cost reductions throughout the development environment.
Enables automated code production:
The structure of the DevOps/CD construct, supported by various thin delivery utilities leverage automated code production as a central value point.
Enables automated processing:
In the same ways that the DevOps/CD model applies to automated code production, integrated processing equally applies. The consequence is faster development, enhanced quality assurance, and greater satisfaction at the customer level.
Creates obvious enterprise win/lose metrics:
Commercial operations live or die on the basis of sales transaction metrics, and in the case of the DevOps/CD matrix, more products delivered more quickly apply intrinsically to these business measurements.
Produces customer value quickly and reliably:
While the DevOps/CD model primarily acts out from inside the development environment, its in-direct business value plays a critical role when validating issues of customer satisfaction. This belief is supported by hosts of practical metrics that offer validations suggesting enhanced speed, stability, and volume of new products when comparing CD against other less flexible methodologies.
At the end of the day, then, the mating of Continuous Integration and Continuous Delivery, both driven by DevOps and DevOps consulting, offers the most transparent, speedy, and stable products ever seen in the enterprise space. This does not mean to suggest that innovation will be capped as a result, since there are better ways to do anything, particularly when it comes to technology. However, as of today’s state-of-the-art, the collaborative model certainly represents the best of all worlds.