Performance-oriented DevOps: A Research Agenda

Brunnert, Andreas, van Hoorn, Andre, Willnecker, Felix, Danciu, Alexandru, Hasselbring, Wilhelm, Heger, Christoph, Herbst, Nikolas, Jamshidi, Pooyan, Jung, Reiner, von Kistowski, Joakim, Koziolek, Anne, Kroß, Johannes, Spinner, Simon, Vögele, Christian, Walter, Jürgen and Wert, Alexander, eds . (2015) Performance-oriented DevOps: A Research Agenda Technical Reports of the SPEC Research Group, SPEC-RG-2015-01 . Standard Performance Evaluation Corporation (SPEC).

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DevOps is a trend towards a tighter integration between development (Dev) and operations (Ops) teams. The need for such an integration is driven by the requirement to continuously adapt enterprise applications (EAs) to changes in the business environment. As of today, DevOps concepts have been primarily introduced to ensure a constant flow of features and bug fixes into new releases from a functional perspective. In order to integrate a non-functional perspective into these DevOps concepts this report focuses on tools, activities, and processes to ensure one of the most important quality attributes of a software system, namely performance.

Performance describes system properties concerning its timeliness and use of resources. Common metrics are response time, throughput, and resource utilization. Performance goals for EAs are typically defined by setting upper and/or lower bounds for these metrics and specific business transactions. In order to ensure that such performance goals can be met, several activities are required during development and operation of these systems as well as during the transition fromDev to Ops. Activities during development are typically summarized by the term Software Performance Engineering (SPE), whereas activities during operations are called Application Performance Management (APM). SPE and APM were historically tackled independently from each other, but the newly emerging DevOps concepts require and enable a tighter integration between both activity streams. This report presents existing solutions to support this integration as well as open research challenges in this area.

The report starts by defining EAs and summarizes their characteristics that make performance evaluations for these systems particularly challenging. It continues by describing our understanding of DevOps and explaining the roots of this trend to set the context for the remaining parts of the report. Afterwards, performance management activities that are common in both life cycle phases are explained, until the particularities of SPE and APM are discussed in separate sections. Finally, the report concludes by outlining activities and challenges to support the rapid iteration between Dev and Ops.

Document Type: Report (Research Report)
Keywords: DevOps, Software Performance Engineering, Application Performance Management
Research affiliation: Kiel University > Software Engineering
Date Deposited: 13 Aug 2015 12:41
Last Modified: 13 Aug 2015 12:49

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