Azure DevOps helps developers and the team in creating and deploying applications with either Azure DevOps Service or on-premise Azure DevOps Server. For developing quality applications efficiently in organizations, it’s clear that DevOps has become increasingly critical to a team’s success and integrating with the cloud is the best possible way to increase that success rate.
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Before moving on, here are the topics that will be covered in this Azure DevOps tutorial and feel free to skip to any topic of your choice:
Before getting into what is Azure DevOps, let’s talk about what DevOps is in general.
Well, the traditional software development model is as follows:
The waterfall model was great and is still the foundation on which applications are made to this day. But, the major cons of this model were as follows:
- Testing was done only after the complete development had been done.
- If a client had any feedback, it would take a lot of time and money to rebuild the application.
- It was the best method to follow if the client knew exactly what they wanted without any changes in between.
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To overcome these problems, the Agile method came into existence.
But, there were problems with this method too. Here, the cons were the following:
- From developers to clients, everyone had to be in sync in order to proceed with development.
- With no clear vision of the end product, it was difficult to navigate through the right track. Often there would be setbacks which used to lead to delay in development.
- With no proper documentation, it was difficult to trace back or to cross check.
Like Agile was used because there were cons in the waterfall model, DevOps was the solution to all the problems the Agile model had. Development and operations teams never got along until DevOps came into existence. Automation is one of its main advantages due to which efficiency also increases. DevOps pays equal attention to all phases, from development to deployment.
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Now, it is clear why DevOps came into the picture. Let us see what it is and how it is related to the cloud, especially with Azure.
What is Azure DevOps?
To sum it up, DevOps is a methodology or a practice that brings together development (Dev) and operations (Ops) teams for deploying efficient applications while shortening the development life cycle overall.
But what happens if you incorporate DevOps in the cloud? Do they even fit in together? Let us answer these questions, first, before moving on further deep with our Azure DevOps tutorial.
Since It is DevOps Azure that is being talked about here, it must be clear to you that adding DevOps to the cloud is quite a big move. So, let’s have a short backstory.
It cannot be denied that software development is in a state of transition, from being product oriented to becoming service oriented.
Cloud Computing offers Software as a Service, and it does affect the entire software development process becoming service oriented. With the majority of businesses shifting to the cloud, it is only reasonable to say that methods like DevOps can be an added plus to all these companies. It removes the technical and bureaucratic hurdles that cause delays in the deployment of software.
Now that you got a glimpse of what is Azure DevOps, let’s talk about the symbiotic relationship between cloud and DevOps in this Azure DevOps tutorial.
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It is known that most companies develop apps in the cloud because they get the infrastructure and they only pay for what they use, along with other benefits. 95 percent of Fortune 500 companies use Azure. You can estimate how many businesses run using Azure services. With the addition of DevOps to Azure, development has become much easier and secure. You can choose either to use services or to work on premise; you have Azure DevOps Server for that.
Different tools were used to unite the process with DevOps, such as Jenkins, Selenium, etc. Whereas in Azure DevOps, you have a service that gives you the benefits of those tools in a single platform.In a nutshell, Azure DevOps is practicing the unification of developers and IT operations while developing apps in Azure.
As mentioned above, Azure DevOps comes with two options:
- Azure DevOps Services
- Azure DevOps Server
Let us take a look at the differences between the two.
Azure DevOps Services Vs. Server
Both the services and the server were known as Visual Studio Team Services (VSTS) and Team Foundation Server (TFS), respectively. They provide environments that support Git, Agile tools, and continuous integration. Let us see the differences between them:
|Azure DevOps Services||Azure DevOps Server|
|It is a cloud offering.||It is an on-premise offering.|
|It offers two options for scaling and scoping data: organizations and projects.||It offers three options for scaling and scoping data: deployment, project collections, and projects.|
|You can connect over the public network.||You can connect to the intranet server.|
|The access level must be assigned to each user.||Access levels must be set based on the license.|
Azure DevOps Services
Following are the services provided by Azure DevOps:
Let us understand each of them briefly in this Azure DevOps tutorial.
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Azure Pipeline is a combination of continuous integration (CI) and continuous delivery (CD) which you can use to create and test your code automatically and give access to other users. You can produce consistent and quality code with CI and CD.
You can work with programming languages like Python, Ruby, Java, PHP, C#, and Go. To use Azure Pipelines, your source code must be stored in a version control system such as Git.
Coming to the pricing, private projects can work up to 30 hours for free, every month, and for public projects it is free.
Azure boards make it easy to track tasks, bugs, and features. There are three types of work items:
An epic work item tracks requirements or features; issue tracks bugs or smaller changes; and task tracks even smaller works done. It is easy to add or update your work status and, with a drag-and-drop feature, you can prioritize your works.
Azure Artifacts is a store that has all your artifacts that were produced while developing and deploying. In simple terms, Artifacts are executable files, i.e., they do not contain any code. You can use multiple feeds to organize and control access to your packages. Are wondering what a feed is? A feed is a container for packages that helps in consuming and publishing. Azure Artifacts provide a fast, secure, and easy feed of binary packages.
Azure Artifacts ensure that your pipelines are fully integrated package management. You can also create packages like Maven, npm, and NuGet. It includes a free usage tier of 2 GB.
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Before talking about Azure Repos, let’s, first, discuss what a version control system is.
Version control systems are software that help you track changes that you have made in your code, by taking snapshots of your files. One popular example is Git.
Azure Repos is a collection of version control tools which are used to manage your code and provides two types of version control:
- Team Foundation Version Control (TFVC)
Git is a distributed version control system which means that the local copy that you have is a complete repository allowing you to work offline as well. In TFVC, the historical data is kept only on the server since it is a centralized version control system.
Azure Test Plans
You can improve the quality of your code by testing it. With Azure Test Plans, you can test your code manually or exploratorily as well. You can request, provide, and track feedbacks also. You can perform unit and functional testing. Running tests continuously is also possible with Continuous testing.
Now that you are familiar with the services, let us see the pricing.
Azure DevOps Pricing
For individual services, here are the pricing options:
|Azure Pipelines||Azure Artifacts|
|1 free Microsoft-hosted CI/CD with 1,800 minutes and 1 free self-hosted CI/CD with unlimited minutes||2 GB free storage|
|After the free parallel jobs, Rs.2643.85/extra Microsoft-hosted jobs and Rs.991.444/extra self-hosted ones||After the free storage, Rs.132.193/GB|
If you want to take user license, here is the pricing:
|Basic Plan||Basic Plan and Testing|
|Free for the first five users||Chargeable from the beginning|
|Includes all basic features||Includes all basic features, along with testing services|
Now that you know the pricing of Azure DevOps, let us move on to the hands-on and see how to work with Azure DevOps.
Azure DevOps Hands-on
In this section of Azure DevOps tutorial, you will be creating a DevOps Organization and using the services provided by Azure DevOps.
Step 1: Go to your Azure Portal and search for Azure DevOps. Click on the link shown below:
Step 2: Click on Create new organization, first, and then click on Continue
Step 3: Add a name for your organization and select the region of your server. Then, click on Continue
- Name your project
- Select Public for Visibility
- Click on Create project
Step 5: Now, you will be able to see that you have successfully created an organization
Step 6: Select Project Settings and then Security to add new members
- Click on your organization team. Here it is named as newproject
- On the top right, you can see Members. Click on it
- Click on Add to add new members to the team
- Search for users you want to add with their mail IDs or names
- Click on Save changes
Step 9: You can see the team members once you have added the users
Step 10: Go to the Git bash and create a new directory. Clone the repository URL into your system. Create a notepad, write your code, and then push it to the Azure server
Step 11: Here is the file on Azure Repos after pushing the repository that was created on the system
Step 12: Here are all the commits that have been made. Click on Commits under Repos to see yours
Step 13: To add a new work, go to Boards and then click on New Work Item
Step 14: Add a new task and assign the state. Click on Save, and your task has been created
Step 15: When you click on Work Items, you can see the work that you created in the center screen
Step 16: If you want to assign the task to a user, go to Boards. You can see the work items. Assign the task to the user
Step 17: Let us now create a pipeline. Go to Pipelines and click on New pipeline
Step 18: Specify the resource where your code is. Here, let’s go with the first option, that is, Azure Repos Git
Step 19: Once you select that you have to choose your repository
Step 20: You can now see the default pipeline created. You can write down the tasks that you want to perform and click on Run
Step 21: Here, nothing would be written explicitly in the .yml file. Let’s simply execute it. Here is the output:
Step 22: You have successfully created a pipeline!
Step 23: Let us test the project, now. There are different ways in which you can do it. For testing via URL, go to Load Test and select New. Click on URL based testing and do the following:
- Name the test
- Enter the URL that you want to test
- Save the test
- Run the test
Step 24: Once you are done, you can see the following:
Step 25: Here are the results of the test run:
Now, you have come to the end of this Azure DevOps tutorial. Hopefully, Azure DevOps has become easier for you after reading this Azure DevOps tutorial. You can now easily manage your projects in one platform.
Since you know what is Azure DevOps, you might be interested in becoming a trained professional with the right certification.
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