What Is Continuous Deployment? Definition and Overview
July 2, 2021 Max 4min read
What is Continuous Deployment?
Continuous Deployment Definition
“Continuous deployment (CDE) is a strategy or methodology for software releases. Any new code update or change through the rigorous automated test process gets deployed. The deployment will be visible to customers directly in the live production environment.”
Continuous deployment is an agile-inspired method. It is a software release process. The objective is to reduce the time taken for software to advance from initial coding to market launch.
Continuous deployment is a phase of the continuous delivery pipeline. All the alterations to the source code get automatically deployed to the production.
Continuous deployment releases all the alterations from every level of the production pipeline to your customers.
It promotes A/B testing and experimentation. The company aims to target customers with specific functionality.
Continuous Deployment practices involve test-driven development, a single deployment method, automated testing, and automated releases.
Continuous deployment vs. Continuous delivery
Although they have similar roles in the software development process, delivery always comes before deployment.
There must be a final, physical approval process with continuous delivery before publishing the code in production.
Consider the procedure of obtaining an item delivered to your home from an online store to grasp the distinction further.
The delivery procedure is the step in which you coordinate the delivery of your goods. You can add your address and indicate when you want them delivered.
You will examine the package once it comes. You can begin utilizing it if satisfied, which is called deployment. If you are displeased with the product, you may reject and return it.
It is analogous to your code passing an automated test. Implying it returns to your developers rather than being published to your clients so that they may begin benefiting from the improvements right immediately.
As a result, continuous deployment represents the entire end-to-end development workflow.
The primary distinction between continuous deployment and delivery is that releases in continuous deployment occur automatically if all release requirements meet during testing.
How does continuous deployment work?
The deployment and release processes remain separated by continuous deployment. It encourages design thinking and the flow of value by:
Customizing features for specific customers:
Separating deployment from release allows the company to target particular customers with specific functionality. And test the impact of the release before distributing capability to all consumers.
Innovation, such as A/B Testing, is encouraged:
Design thinking approaches like A/B Testing necessitate the capacity to show various functionality to targeted users. Then collecting data that aids in creating designs that are optimal for user demands.
Small batch production:
Prior pipeline decisions, such as automated testing, deliver in small batches faster.
Delivering based on business needs:
Enterprises may release on demand. It significantly enhances business agility when deployment and release get separated. And efforts are made to guarantee both are automated and low-risk.
A release, for instance, can be in production ahead of a marketing target, allowing maximum business flexibility in maximizing all elements of value delivery.
List of Continuous Deployment Tools you can use
Let’s begin with Jenkins, the most prominent CI/CD tool in the marketplace. Jenkins bills itself as an open-source continual integration server with over 1000 plugins. It enables it to get customized for a wide range of use cases.
Jenkins is an excellent choice if you are concerned about the expense of some other solutions; also, it gets extensively utilized. Therefore there are a variety of plugins and documentation available.
JetBrains’ TeamCity is the famous IDE developer’s continuous integration and continuous deployment solution. It boasts a user-friendly design and a plethora of essential features.
A free “Professional Server License” with three build agents may be sufficient for small teams. Following that, business licenses start at $1,999.
GitLab provides a complete solution for continuous integration, delivery, and deployment. All within a single UI that connects with their Git source control scheme.
GitLab’s pricing is also relatively competitive when compared to the competitors. You can self-host or use GitLab’s SaaS, with pricing ranging from free to $99.
What are the advantages of continuous deployment?
- Remove DIY from continuous delivery and put more emphasis on the product. (Tap here to learn all about product management tools.)
- Automate the tedious tasks and concentrate on actual testing.
- Make deployments as straightforward as possible while maintaining security.
- Expand from a single application to a portfolio of Enterprise IT applications.
- Integrate your current tools and technologies (such as continuous integration providers, DevOps tools, or scripts) into a unified process.
- Use a uniform pipeline to integrate teams and procedures.
- Design procedures that span the development, testing, and production environments.
- Offer a unified picture of all apps and environments.
- Deliver both cloud-native and classic applications in a single pipeline.
- Boost overall productivity.
What are the best practices of continuous deployment?
Keep a central repository of code:
Typically, development teams work on numerous pieces of code simultaneously that must be organized together. The goal is to create a cohesive output. The changed lines of code might quickly derail a build if there is no clean code repository.
Build and deploy with automation:
To make the “continuous” portion of continuous deployment work, you must automate it.
Maintain the baseline daily:
Teams must regularly commit to the baseline for the CD process to run well (multiple times a day if possible). Development teams can limit the number of conflicting changes and handle them swiftly at the source by committing regularly.
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Continuous deployment aims to manage minor, incremental software modifications. It intends to provide applications (and business value) to target consumers more quickly and cost-effectively.
Continuous deployment or continuous delivery relies heavily on deployment pipelines.