Can Data Keep Pace with DevOps and Agile?

By Staff Contributor on January 28, 2015

Provisioning a new server has become increasingly easy with virtualization. Provisioning data, however, can be more challenging, especially in Agile shops where the volume of environments required to support dev and testing can easily go beyond the abilities of your IT operations to keep up. Is there any way to make it easier?

We brought together a group of expert DBAs, geeks and IT/System administrators to share what they thought about Data Virtualization and its role in accelerating DevOps and Agile efforts. They joined hosts SolarWinds Database Performance Evangelist Janis Griffin (@DoBoutAnything) and Tim Gorman Technical Consultant at Delphix. We posed some key questions to the participants on the topic and here are some key takeaways from the conversation (you can see the full chat transcript at the end of this article).

Tip: Simplify the maintenance of production database copies

Maintaining copies of production databases is integral to data recovery. The number of copies of production databases maintained varies, according to Tim Gorman:

TimGorman Copies of Production Data Needed




for a variety of reasons, as Tim Gorman noted, including:

  • Agile methods
  • Continuous delivery
  • Real-time reporting
  • SQL tuning

With increasing stacks of databases and applications, it has become more complex to maintain copies of data.

Tip: Simplify provisioning of non-production copies of data

The biggest bottleneck in IT is provisioning non-prod copies of data for projects, fixes and so on. Refreshing data is a continuous exercise for a DBA. The primary objective of refreshing non-prod copies is to make production data available in a non-production environment. But in an Agile environment this could be a challenging task for a DBA because of the work in multiple releases, as @SQLMal noted:

SQLMal Multiple Release Work




Tip: Integrate the view of disparate data

DevOps process creates silos in IT, with data being forced into disconnected silos. This in turn leads to greater dependence on DBAs for production data. Organizations struggle with DevOps unless they merge Dev/Ops/Test environments into one long process. With increased demand for data in a modern SDLC, data virtualization can play an important role as it helps provide an integrated view of disparate data.

TimGorman The Phoneix Project Reference





Tip: Look for ways to reduce time and cost of data provisioning

Data virtualization results in considerable time savings leading to a faster project completion.Data virtualization drastically helps reduce data sprawl, speeds up development and optimizes the DevOps process.

TimGorman Savings in OpEx 2x or more


Modern Agile methodology requires that features and maintenance be delivered on a continuous basis. This has in turn led to increased demand for data, and it’s really not possible to provision a full environment for all the developers/testers as storage requirements have increased considerably. Data virtualization offers one approach that can enable greater collaboration and an integrated view of disparate data at reduced cost and resources.

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