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Which DevOps testing tools do I need to know?

There are numerous DevOps tools, so as a tester, is it necessary to know all of them? Gerie Owen explains why tools might come secondary to the goal of DevOps.

DevOps requires more tool functionality than just about any other systems development lifecycle methodology.

Continuous delivery (CD), the practice in which DevOps is based, requires automation at every stage of a code delivery pipeline. Development, version control, integration, testing, release management, deployment and production monitoring with orchestration are all necessary steps with necessary tools.

Automated feedback is critical to the DevOps process, which makes infrastructure monitoring, application monitoring and aggregators critical components of the DevOps testing toolchain as well.

Continuous testing, the backbone of CD, requires not only functional automation, nonfunctional testing and mobile testing tools, but also ways to spin up environments, emulate the behavior of applications and run multiple applications on a single OS. Service virtualization tools emulate behaviors of applications under test so that integration testing can take place without all components available. Containers enable multiple applications to run simultaneously without the need for separate virtual machines, and beyond that, there are tools needed to deploy applications to and manage containers.

What's the most important DevOps tool and technical concept for developers and IT ops experts to learn? The answer depends on which side of the DevOps pairing you started on.

So, which DevOps tool is best for your testing career? The answer is none of the above. Familiarize yourself with DevOps testing tools for each of these functions. Yet, because of the collaborative nature of DevOps, communication is more important than proficiency with any individual tool.

Testers are the champions of quality throughout the DevOps process, as managing software quality requires much more than automated tasks. Communication skills are a critical component of test. Testers need to share information and collaborate effectively with the entire DevOps team, including developers, operations, security experts and business elements. So, learn the DevOps testing toolchain, but don't neglect communication skills.

This was last published in July 2018

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