GitOps is an IaC (infrastructure as code) methodology where your Git repository is your one single source of truth, offers a central place for managing your infrastructure and application code. GitOps can apply to containerized applications (e.g YAML files for Kubernetes) and non-containerized applications (e.g Terraform for AWS). That allows DevOps to harness the power of Git including versioning, branches, pull requests, and incorporate that into their CI/CD pipelines. Adopting GitOps enhances developer experience, speeds up compliance and stability, and ensures consistency and repeatability.
GitOps help you manage your infrastructure close with your application code and allow your teams to collaborate easily and quickly. Here is an example of infrastructure change using the GitOps methodology:
- A developer needs a larger instance type for his application.
- He opens a pull request In the relevant Git repository with the updated instance type.
- the pull request triggers the CI pipeline to verify that the code is valid.
- The DevOps team reviews the changes and the pull request is approved and merged.
- After a new commit was added to the master branch, the CD pipeline is triggered and the changes take effect automatically.
The above is what is described as a GitOps workflow. It makes it possible to achieve faster deployment without having to apply manual and “of the record” changes to your infrastructure.
GitOps vs. DevOps
GitOps is a subset of DevOps that leverages Git as the source control software, following best practices as the operating model for building cloud-native apps. The purpose of GitOps is to help the DevOps teams to take control over his infrastructure by making code configuration management and deployments more efficient.
On the other hand, GitOps makes it easier for DevOps to take on IT's self-service roles, developers can easily push new changes and after the DevOps approved the change it applies immediately and automatically.
When adopting GitOps, here is how your life becomes easier:
- DevOps can implement new changes to the infrastructure safely and quickly.
- Developers can collaborate with DevOps.
- All changes are audited and can be reviewed and revert.
- Enforcing ONE idle state of your infrastructure.
- Each change is documented and approved.
- Integrations to CI/CD systems.
- Easily replicate your infrastructure across environments.
- Best suits for Disaster Recovery scenarios.
But there are some drawbacks in GitOps:
- All manual changes will be overridden.
- When the workflow is not defined correctly, changes can impact your application performance.
- Security best practices need to be enforced and regularly checks.
- Small and quick changes need to go through all the GitOps processes before applied to production.
GitOps For Kubernetes
GitOps processes are often used with containerized applications because Kubernetes can take declarative input as the desired state and apply the changes. By using Git as the version control system, DevOps and Developers teams can collaborate more easily and manage their environments deployments because GitOps make the deployment process shorter and transparent. Kubernetes is the most known with GitOps because it became the container orchestration standard, the same desired state files can be applied to various environments (EKS, AKS, GKE, OpenShift, etc...) with almost no changes and prevent “vendor lock”.
GitOps In The Cloud
Cloud providers natively support GitOps processes, using Git with a combination of various IaC tools (e.g Terraform, Ansible, etc) and CI/CD systems you can automatically create and manage your cloud infrastructure (including Load Balancers, Auto Scaling Groups, Object Storage, etc). GitOps can also help you gain more control over your monthly bill, by enforcing only one state and override manual creation of instances, clusters, etc. that can accrue cost very quickly.
GitOps can also help you gain more control over the security and cost of your cloud account, by enforcing one state that complies with the company security requirements and override manual creation of instances, clusters, etc. that can accrue cost very quickly.
Adopting GitOps processes can be intimidating, but our DevOps team at CloudRide has in-depth expertise in security best practices and GitOps processes. together we can simplify and speed up your DevOps workflows and shorten your deployment cycles to the Cloud.
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