The introduction of cloud technology is easily one of the most significant technological breakthroughs of the past decade. The field of software engineering has especially benefited from robust technologies like cloud computing and the cloud’s powerful storage capabilities. The benefit is evident from the rise of methodologies that have made collaboration and development much more effective while using the cloud. One of the prime examples of such methodologies is DevOps.
DevOps is enabling the development of high-powered technology through its strategies. For example, as per Forrester, various popular web pioneers set off a revolution with “stellar DevOps practices in place.” The kind of opportunities offered by DevOps has attracted fresh and veteran developers and IT professionals to learn all about it and adapt it. Some even plan to switch their careers to a DevOps-focused role.
Regardless of their experience, a newbie to DevOps will need guidance over what they can be asked in a potential DevOps interview. This article takes you through the main aspects of DevOps that you may be quizzed over in a professional interview. It can also be used as a learning path when familiarizing oneself with DevOps, with each part becoming a knowledge milestone.
Learning About DevOps and More
DevOps brings development, operations, security, and quality teams together under a framework that streamlines the processes between them. Efficiency is one of the main aims of DevOps, and it is achieved by identifying the need for automation and implementing it there and then. Being a cross-disciplinary process supports a culture of effective collaboration to quickly deliver a product without compromising the quality.
As DevOps is getting popular, there are various avenues for learning and receiving accreditation on it. Industry-leading giants like Microsoft, Amazon, and IBM offer dedicated learning portals that offer courses and certifications. Popular MOOC websites like Udemy, EdX, and Coursera also offer various courses at all professional levels.
Learning DevOps is all about knowing the right tools and focusing on making the product pipeline effective. Learning from a renowned resource will help ensure that you can embrace the DevOps culture effectively.
Preparing for DevOps Interview Questions
Applying for a professional DevOps position mostly looks like applying for any other job. No matter what, the interview is an integral part of the application and may even be the make-or-break scenario. In such a case, it is essential to familiarize oneself with the aspects of DevOps that most companies focus on and can test you in a professional interview.
The seven primary areas of DevOps commonly judged in a professional interview are as follows:
1. What Does the Devops Cycle Look Like?
The DevOps path harmonizes mainly two distinct disciplines: development and operations. Therefore, it is crucial to know how the former integrates with the latter under the DevOps lifecycle. The lifecycle includes how a product is planned and developed, and how it is tested for quality assurance before release to production. After release, it is operated, maintained, and monitored so that any upgrades and improvements can be seamlessly sent for development, tested, and then released. It is important to understand where each phase fits and how each phase’s tools enable the product to be neatly juggled back and forth.
2. How Is DevOps Different From Other Methodologies?
This is also an important question that tests whether you understand the relevance and efficacy of DevOps when compared to other methodologies like Agile, and how they may complement each other. After all, the company must have weighed the benefits of DevOps against those offered by other approaches. Your employers would need someone who understands not only what DevOps is, but why it’s the ideal approach.
To answer this question, it is necessary to understand the advantages that the DevOps culture offers. For example, it should be mentioned how the focus on automation of programmable processes reduces significant complexity. Additionally, DevOps’ push for greater inter-departmental collaboration and capability to scale easily than other approaches can also be mentioned.
3. Continuous Integration (CI) and Continuous Delivery (CD)
Continuous Integration refers to integrating code through a repository with the application and running automated unit and integration tests to check its effect on the main code. Once verified, the Continuous Delivery part of the pipeline involves setting up an automated process that deploys an application to production.
Given how integral CI and CD are to the DevOps workflow, you should ensure a strong command over the practices. The CI/CD pipeline has a focus on enabling faster and more efficient product development and updates. It features significant automation that, as discussed above, is fundamental to DevOps.
4. Branching And Version Control Strategies
Version control is an important aspect of collaboration in modern software engineering. It enables multiple developers to contribute code to a single project simultaneously without having to worry about overwriting any other person’s contribution. Version control technologies like Git make it possible to always have the updated codebase as it is developing by the second.
Being a DevOps engineer, it is important to know the power of different version control technologies and how it works. Concepts like branching, or pushing, forking, and pulling code, should be at your fingertips. A DevOps professional is also expected to form efficient version control strategies that can accommodate the company’s resources while not compromising on efficiency. Some examples of strategies include not breaking builds or updating code atomically.
5. Testing And Quality Assurance (QA)
Quality assurance is one of the main interactions between development and operations in the DevOps pipeline. Unlike other methodologies, where QA is separate from development, testing comes within DevOps development and is a mostly automated process. It involves testing out the development code by merging with the application and seeing whether it is good to go for production or not.
DevOps engineers have to ensure that the infrastructure supports active collaboration between QA, development, and operations. Such an infrastructure ensures testing can be done regardless of department and that metrics needed to assess quality are accessible to everyone.
6. Popular DevOps Tools and Technologies
With DevOps rising quickly to become a favorite of many enterprises globally, there are a wide variety of tools available to implement. Each of these tools has some advantage over the other and fulfills different needs of different enterprises. There are tools available that help control processes across the DevOps pipeline, like Azure DevOps, and focus on a specific part of it, like Jenkins CI.
One of the most basic expectations from a DevOps engineer is to be well-versed with all the popular tools like Azure DevOps and Jenkins CI. The more experience obtained from using all these tools, the better choice the DevOps engineer would make based on the employer’s needs and resources.
7. Extending DevOps Strategy To Involve Other Aspects
One of the main strengths of the DevOps culture is its ability to accommodate other departments/processes into its cycle. We can see many examples of this in DevSecOps (that integrates security) or DevContentOps (which focuses on using DevOps for content-related sites and apps and integration with CMS tools/processes). While a DevOps engineer wouldn’t necessarily know the ins and outs of all such variations of DevOps, they should know how they work.
This article gave you the seven important aspects that are often asked during DevOps interviews. Employers like to gauge how ingrained the DevOps culture and skills are in the applicant’s mind, and the above seven areas give a significant idea of it. Therefore, it would help if you prepared yourself in these areas and worked on your regular professional skills to make the most of all the lucrative opportunities in the world of DevOps.