Bringing CI/CD to your Agency with DDEV-Live

DDEV CI/CD

CI/CD—continuous integration and delivery—helps your developers achieve the most (and their best), and is a faster, more reliable way of delivering code to clients. DDEV-Live integrates with your CI/CD tools of choice.

New to CI/CD? Integrate with DDEV-Live for a scalable, sustainable future of efficient development and deployment.

Already doing CI/CD? You shouldn’t have to change your existing CI/CD setup to suit your hosting provider (or any other vendor). With DDEV-Live, you and your team can keep using your favorite tools. We offer flexible and adaptable integration options, so you can continue delivering uninterrupted value to your customers.

What is CI/CD?

CI and CD are defined thus: 

  • CI: Continuous Integration—Automated merging and testing of development work.
  • CD: Continuous Delivery—Automated release of (merged and tested) development work into the production environment.

CI/CD reduces risk and increases the velocity of software delivery. “It’s not a particular technological setup,” explains Steve Grandchamp, DDEV CEO, “It’s a whole different approach. CI/CD embodies continual, incremental changes, updates, and deployments to a particular deliverable such as a website. We assume no project is ever ‘done,’ but instead in a state of constant improvement. And these small, incremental changes are faster, easier, and more reliable to deliver, making your developers much more effective.”

You can put this into practice with many different tools, and developers all have their favorites. The exact setup you choose can depend on project and client requirements, as well as personal preference, and can consist of various combinations of “point” solutions that each solve one part of the puzzle. Your teams probably already have their favorites, such as Jenkins, CircleCI, and Travis. Ready to get started? Here is a step-by-step guide for teams to integrate one standard tool, Jenkins, with DDEV-Live.

The Benefits of CI/CD

Deploy Faster More Often. Testing, merging, and deploying your work in small steps is much less risky than massive deployments. Every CI/CD solution promises this risk reduction. What’s unique about DDEV-Live’s approach is that you don’t have to switch existing tools or workflows for deploying applications. The deployment process begins when code is checked into your code repository (GitHub, Gitlab). DDEV-Live then works in concert with popular CI/CD tools such as Jenkins, CircleCI or Travis creating a way to ship safely, many times a day if necessary.

Improve your bottom line. “If you could save just one hour per day, per developer, on a team of twenty, that’s like getting a half-time dev more working for you for the same price,” Steve explains. “CI/CD can make a fixed number of dollars much more efficient, productive, and less prone to error. Not doing it—not enabling your teams with these proven tools and processes—is ignoring some low hanging fruit for cost savings. It doesn’t make sense to me.”

Free your teams to work more effectively. And it’s not only developers who are freed to concentrate on their work when operations take a back seat. Steve says, “A web designer or front-end engineer can do more of what gets them up in the morning, which for many people isn’t operations. That way, they’re also delivering the most value.”

Shared responsibility versus single-point-of-failure. If you’re still not too excited about CI/CD, DDEV-Live Cloud Technical Architect, Jason Roberts, has a scenario that will make you sit up and listen. “If the engineer who performs your deployments suddenly leaves the company (or goes on vacation, extended sick leave, or gets married), could your organization continue to perform deployments and releases of new sites or features? How long would it take for you to get back up to speed?” With CI/CD, the deployment process is automated, therefore more reliable and owned by the organization, rather than just a few individuals.

How DDEV-Live Fits In

We build the DDEV platform to fit our clients’ processes and tooling, not the other way around. You should not have to change the way you work to suit a particular vendor.  Here’s an example of how DDEV fits into a client’s existing CI/CD setup:

A flowchart showing a dev-test-deploy workflow which incorporates DDEV-Local and DDEV-Live with Continuous Integration tools Travis and Jenkins for testing.

DDEV gives your team powerful, flexible technology at every stage. It integrates into your workflows and supports the tools and systems you already use. From the DDEV-Local development environment to hosting with DDEV-Live, our tools are there to accommodate your requirements, not the other way around.

This flexibility applies to CI/CD processes, too: we support integration with many popular tools. If you’re setting out on your CI/CD journey, you can be sure your chosen path won’t clash with your hosting setup if you decide to integrate DDEV-Live. Because of the flexibility offered by our system, if you have existing workflows your team can set up integrations with the tools that are already working for them. This reduces their learning curve to near-zero, saving time and money. Future iterations can be rapid, smooth, and predictable, with clear and known costs.

Your CI/CD Journey

CI/CD, like DevOps and other modern development practices, is all about minimizing risk by taking small steps, while “banking” the gains by automating more and more of what you learn over time. This philosophy applies to establishing your CI/CD processes, too.

Steve has some tips for starting out or expanding your existing setup: “Concentrate on one part of the process first, such as deploying changes you make locally to a test site where others can see it. Then repeat and refine the steps it takes to make it happen.” Sorting through the many tools available for CI/CD purposes can be a challenge. For this, he recommends seeking recommendations from other engineers you trust and sticking to the open-source principles that have made DDEV and what we do possible. “Search for open source tools with lots of users that recommend them,” he says.

Start small in the beginning and experiment with different tools. Use monitoring and reporting results to get better and better over time. Every developer hour you save through automation and improved reliability is an hour that your teams can put into delivering more value. Wherever you are with CI/CD in your organization, use the tools that make you and your teams productive, efficient, and happy.

Have more questions?

Have more questions? Want to see DDEV-Live in action? Book a demo of DDEV-Live and talk with us about the benefits of integrating us into your CI/CD workflows.

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