First way DevOps works by improving the overall efficiency of a system. Similarly, automated testing allows teams to create new features while ensuring that current and existing features continue to work as intended, resulting in a more efficient process. Logically, automated testing and first way DevOps compliment each other, and work to create a more effective environment for creating functional software.
One property of first way DevOps is the use of more frequent, smaller changes to code. In practice, this incremental process allows teams to gradually hone in on the target functionality. However, making code changes and committing them to a repository more frequently poses the risk of introducing fatal errors more often. To combat this risk, teams may implement continuous building to catch these errors earlier.
In practice, continuous building means that the entire product or module generates a current build whenever changes are made. If the latest change caused errors when integrating with the rest of the product, a failed build will clearly point out when the issue began. Since this failed build comes after very few code changes, it becomes easier for the team to identify problematic code, rather than searching through tens or hundreds of code changes to find which one caused the issue.
For some systems, it may not be feasible to initiate a new build immediately after any code changes are committed. However, teams should seek to begin this process as quickly as possible. Many organisations use daily builds, beginning at the end of the work day, so that new code changes committed during the build process will not interrupt the procedure. When the build is finished, it may be automated or standard practice to kick off testing steps. If there are problems with the build or errors during testing, teams have a much smaller pool of changes to investigate, rather than waiting to build every few days, or even multiple weeks. Because of these smaller global changes, continuous building fits into the way that first way DevOps improves the development process.
Testing and Integrating Code and Environments
A problem with large software projects is that code for a specific feature might seem to work alone, but fails to integrate properly with the product as a whole. To avoid the setback of having to rework code after attempting to incorporate it into the rest of the product, DevOps projects often begin testing procedures for code integration immediately after a feature is finished, or even while it is still in development. Especially when utilising automation, a DevOps system might kick off testing and integration routines immediately after code changes are committed to a central repository. This rapid feedback allows developers to know whether their code was successfully integrated more quickly, and thus reduces the overhead of editing code to properly work with the rest of a product. Instead of working on another feature and returning to fix a failed integration after days or weeks, developers should know the status of code integration almost immediately.
In addition to the process of integration code into the remainder of a product, DevOps also can utilise testing procedures to verify whether a product operates as intended in many different environments without the difficulty of acquiring many unique systems and manually testing a product on each of them. With the availability of virtual machines, teams can create any given system digitally, and change them as necessary. While it would be impossible to recreate every possible computer configuration for testing, teams might prioritise the most likely user environments. If users frequently use similar configurations, it would benefit the team to recreate these systems to verify that new features operate in most environments properly. If the product has been tested on most common configurations, unexpected environmental issues are less likely to occur. Some obscure setup problems may occur, but they should be significantly more rare if the team has fully tested on what the majority of users will be operating on.