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Features to Leverage While Implementing Azure DevOps in Your Organization  by@sarrahpitaliya

Features to Leverage While Implementing Azure DevOps in Your Organization

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sarrahpitaliya

Avid reader and technology writer www.radixweb.com

Seems like you are interested in learning about the amazing tool that helps automate and manage your project's software development lifecycle. That’s the reason you have landed on this page.

So, well, I have something for you. That’s called Azure DevOps.

DevOps is one type of method that helps bring both the Development (Dev) and Operations (Ops) team together to work on processes and technologies. DevOps methodology offers value to the organization in order to achieve great success with faster and efficient processes.

DevOps enables software developers to work collaboratively for the final outcome with a set of modern services and resources. In addition, it also allows various departments like QA, development, IT operations to work on the same table for reliable and robust products.

With the rise of DevOps methodology, many organizations have adopted to satisfy their customers’ needs quickly and efficiently. Therefore, you will find various DevOps tools, such as GitHub, Bitbuckets, Git, Gitlabs, Jenkins, etc., available in the market, having similar abilities and features. Moreover, to distinguish themselves in this competitive market, they come up with extra features and functionalities like a core repository, version control, along with DevOps capabilities. In the end, they are not good at managing software development lifecycle with end-to-end abilities. That’s when we can consider Azure DevOps.

What’s Azure DevOps?

In October 2018. Azure DevOps came into existence. Basically, Azure DevOps is a SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) platform that consists of a comprehensive set of tools that provide not only DevOps abilities, but also the ability to manage the entire product development lifecycle.

Flexibility is one of the prime factors of Azure DevOps, as it can integrate with other tools for shared process flow management and organize the whole DevOps toolchain.

This aids in the utilization of already-in-use tools within the organization. So, it’s time to understand those three main reasons why Azure DevOps steals the spotlight as compared to other tools.

Flexible

Each service of Azure DevOps can be used separately while also integrating with the existing tools of the organization. Hence, it makes adaptability easier. Well, this type of flexibility is provided by Azure DevOps.

Platform Independent

Azure DevOps doesn’t keep its services and functionalities limited to only Microsoft-driven platforms and languages. Despite being developed by Microsoft, it can easily execute and function on any platform (macOS, Windows, and Linux) and language (Python, Sprint, Express.Js, JSF, C, C++, iOS, Android, .Net, NodeJS, Java, PHP).

Cloud Independent

The Azure DevOps Continuous Integration (CI) and Continuous Delivery (CD) models are supported by Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Google Cloud Platform apart from Azure.

Advantages of Azure DevOps

Well, there are many benefits, as an organization, you can leverage with the implementation of Azure DevOps as compared to other tools.

Let’s walk through them.

Reliability

Azure DevOps is a SaaS platform, which is available in the international market. It also promises to have a 99.9% uptime Service-Level Agreement (SLA), making it a trustworthy DevOps tool. It also offers scalability and round-the-clock support.

Robust Development

Having said earlier, Azure DevOps allows every team to work under one roof with code shareability functionality. Additionally, Azure Pipelines allows customers to create automated workflows for cloud-based testing and continuous integration.

Continuous Updates

Since Azure DevOps is a SaaS platform, Microsoft handles every patch and update. Hence, it removes the overhead of the developers and makes it much easier to use.

Operations

Full-stack monitoring, actionable alerts, and insights from logs and telemetry are all available to users with Azure Monitor. Hence, using full-stack development, developers can easily monitor the process.

Upgradation of New Features

Since Azure DevOps is developed by Microsoft, the developer’s community is quite proactive. Therefore, the new features are released in a short time.

Features of Azure DevOps

As we said earlier, Azure DevOps offers the end-to-end abilities to manage the software development lifecycle; it comes up with the below-given features.

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Azure Boards

Azure Boards is a set of Agile tools where every team member can plan and track the development progress. In addition, it also allows a team to monitor their progress with Kanban boards, dashboards, backlogs, and custom reports. It offers native integration with Scrum and Kanban for Agile on the back-end side.

In a nutshell, it’s a work tracking system with extra functionalities.

Azure Repos

Azure Repos consists of version control tools. It’s used to manage different versions of codes. This is the place where the app’s source code is stored. Therefore, every developer working on the same project can monitor and track the changes made in the code with different versions.

The DevOps tool captures screenshots of the files being checked in when someone modifies the code. So, this way, anyone can track the changes easily. These screenshots are stored in the databases. In addition, it allows the team to work collaboratively under the same project.

Azure Repos consists of two version controls.

  • Git: Distributed version control
  • Team Foundation Version Control (TFVC): Centralized version control

Azure Pipelines

In the software development lifecycle, the constant delivery pipeline is an important factor for DevOps. It offers the Continuous Integration and Continuous Delivery (CI/CD) pipelines to the application from development to production.

An Azure Pipelines must allow for clear communication between different teams that are in charge of distinct tasks.

Azure Artifacts

Azure Artifacts allows teams to integrate packages into Azure Pipelines easily. It makes it easier to deploy and consume the application. Various Azure Artifacts, such as Maven, Npm, Universal Packages, Build Artifacts, Nuget, PyPI, and Symbols, are available in the market.

Azure Test Plans

Azure Test Plans are a set of rich and powerful tools for testing your application, including manual/exploratory testing and continuous testing. They are a simple, browser-based test management system that includes all the required features for various testing approaches.

It works with Azure Pipelines to offer automated CI/CD workflow testing. Developers and operations engineers who have used the "test" feature in VSTS will be familiar with the capability provided in Test Plans.

Azure DevTest Labs

The existence of great testing tools is something that most developers don’t consider when it comes to Azure DevOps. Azure DevOps recently came up with a new tool - Azure DevTest Labs.

The DevTest tools allow you to enhance your software delivery without sacrificing its quality. The tools assist you in automating different and complex tasks, such as infrastructure provisioning. Azure DevTest Labs set up the needed testing environments for your software project by automating most of your development chores. This way, you can achieve your goal with work automation.

In a nutshell, DevOps is a collection of techniques and tools, impacting the app development lifecycle’s phases, which includes planning, development, delivery, and operations. Here, each phase is dependent on the others.

DevOps helps to shorten the time between committing a change to the system and releasing it into production after going through various stages, while still maintaining high quality.

Continuous Integration and Continuous Delivery (CI/CD), Version Control, Agile Software Development, Infrastructure as Code, Configuration Management, and Continuous Monitoring are the part of these methods.

Wrapping Up

Going through the above lesser-known things of Azure DevOps, we can conclude that there are no restrictions or limitations on how DevOps technologies can be used. The usage of Azure DevOps is limitless, so it can be easily compatible with any service or solution to be offered.

With the adoption of DevOps, the organization can stand up to the customer's needs. Therefore, it’s the best advice to integrate the DevOps method at the earliest to deliver high-quality products with faster turn-around time.

So, what are you waiting for? Integrate continuous delivery into your development process with Azure DevOps.

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