DevOps and SRE seem like two sides of the same coin. Both titles aim to bridge the gap between the development and operations teams. They have a unified goal of enhancing the release cycle without any compromises. In this blog, we will highlight the differences between them, SRE Vs. DevOps – What Is The Difference? Let us check it out.
In most companies, we can see that there is a need for only one of these positions. They have an overlap in responsibilities and abilities. Both titles co-exist in the same space. Both of them are an essential part of the development team.
So how are they different? What does each one of them mean? SRE vs. DevOps, we are going over the two different concepts.
Site Reliability Engineer (SRE)
SRE is a paradigm of continuous analysis. It analyzes the existing infrastructure from a reliability perspective. It is centered around removing performance bottlenecks. It also helps in optimizing the infrastructure, the toolkit, and the workflows involved. Born at Google, SRE is now the leading approach. It helps to ensure the long-term sustainability and operational resilience of digital assets.
An SRE has responsibility for all these areas:
- General systems uptimes
- Systems performance
- Incident and outage management
- Systems and application monitoring
- Change management
- Capacity planning
DevOps is a process of automating all repetitive IT operations. It helps to cut the human effort (and the risk of human error) while running infrastructure. DevOps engineers focus on software development, deployment, and operating production environments.
While DevOps is not a technology. DevOps environments generally apply common methodologies. These include the following:
- CI and CD tools with an emphasis on task automation.
- Systems and tools that support DevOps adoption, including:
- Real-time monitoring
- Incident management
- Configuration management
- Collaboration platforms
- Cloud computing, microservices, and containers are implemented concurrently with DevOps methodologies.
A DevOps approach is one of many technologies IT staff use to execute IT projects that meet business needs. DevOps can co-exist with:
- Agile software development.
- IT service management frameworks, such as ITIL.
- Project management directives, such as Lean and Six Sigma.
- And other strategies.
We have already covered various aspects of what SRE and DevOps are. So feel free to dive deeper into this topic by reading our article.
Development, Operations, and Reliability
Before DevOps, development and operation teams worked as two independent squads. Each with its own goals and objectives. The differences and lack of communication between these teams often impacted the product. Thai in return affected the end-users and the company.
To better communicate and build better products. DevOps became one of the most critical positions in every company.
The official definition of DevOps is
“A software engineering culture and practice that aims to unify software development and operations.”
The term was first coined by Andrew Shafer and Patrick Debois back in 2008. While it took a few years to become a common concept. Nowadays just about every company, from enterprises to startups, is hiring DevOps.
The concept of SRE has been around since 2003. This makes it even older than DevOps. It was coined by Ben Treynor. He founded Google’s Site Reliability team. According to Treynor, SRE is;
What happens when a software engineer is tasked with what used to be called operations.”
Just like DevOps, SRE is also about combining development and operation teams. It helps them see the other side of the process. It promotes visibility of the complete application lifecycle.
Both titles are advocates of automation and monitoring. They share a similar goal to reduce the time. That is from the commitment of change to when it is deployed to production. SRE and DevOps both want to do so without compromising the code’s or product’s quality.
Google itself states that SRE and DevOps are not so different from one another.
“They are not two competing methods for software development and operations. But rather close friends designed to break down organizational barriers. In this way, they can deliver better software faster.”
So why did Google need to create its definition?
SRE Vs. DevOps – What Is The Difference?
SRE specialists should not be confused with DevOps engineers. Although many sources use these two terms interchangeably.
Site Reliability Engineering has also been described as a specific implementation of DevOps. But it focuses on building reliable systems. Whereas DevOps is more broadly focused on infrastructure.
Stephen Gossett wrote in Built-In:
“Some companies have rebranded their operation teams to SRE teams with little meaningful change.”
This is also perceived true for operation teams rebranded as DevOps teams.
Despite all the similarities, here we have a list of differences between SRE vs. DevOps:
There are different skill sets between DevOps and SREs. Core development DevOps are the guys that love writing software. They are writing code and testing it. They are pushing it out into production to get an application line. In this way, they can help to solve a problem.
SREs are more investigative. They are willing to analyze to find out why something has gone wrong. They want to ensure that the same problems do not keep happening. They want to be proactive in their efforts, not reactive. They want to automate repetitive tasks so they can innovate.
Both DevOps and SRE use tools to improve workflows and service delivery. SRE enables teams to use the same tools and services through flexible APIs. While DevOps promotes the adoption of tools. SRE ensures every team member can access the updated tools and technologies.
Sometimes there isn’t enough time to do things manually, regardless of your role. Sometimes you need to find ways to automate things. This lets you focus your time and energy on innovation. You do not have to automate everything. But, if you are constantly doing the same task over and over. Why not use automation to reduce toil? Automation is the key.
DevOps is going to automate deployment. They are going to automate tasks and features. SRE is going to automate redundancy. They are going to automate manual tasks that they can turn into programmatic tasks. This can help them to keep the stack up and running.
Since both DevOps and SRE support automation. You will need to continuously monitor the developed systems to ensure every process runs as planned.
DevOps gathers metrics through a feedback loop. On the other hand, SRE enforces measurement by providing SLIs, SLOs, and SLAs. In this way, it performs measurements. Since DevOps are software-defined. SRE monitors toil and reliability. It ensures consistent service delivery.
5. Organizational Structure
DevOps works to ensure that different departments/software teams are not isolated from each other. It ensures they all work towards a common goal.
SRE enables this by enforcing the ownership of projects between teams. With SRE, every team uses the same tools, techniques, and codebase to support:
- Seamless collaboration
6. Development and implementation
DevOps is about core development. SRE is about implementing the core. What does that mean? Let’s think about it this way.
DevOps teams are focused on core development. They are working on a product or application that is the solution to someone’s problem. They are taking an agile approach to software development. It helps them build, test, deploy and monitor applications with speed, quality, and control.
SREs are working on the implementation of the core. They are constantly giving feedback back to that core development group to say:
“Hey, something that you guys have designed isn’t working exactly the way that you think that it is.”
SRE leverages operations data and software engineering to automate IT operations tasks. It accelerates software delivery while minimizing IT risk.
7. Failure Acceptance
Both SRE and DevOps concepts treat errors and failure as inevitable occurrences. While DevOps aims to handle runtime errors and allow teams to learn from them. SRE enforces error management through Service Level Commitments (SLC). It helps to ensure all failures are handled.
SRE also allows for a risk budget. It allows teams to test the limits of failure for reevaluation and innovation.
DevOps embraces slow, gradual change to enable constant improvements. SRE supports this by allowing teams to perform small, frequent updates. In this way, they can reduce the impact of changes on application availability and stability.
Additionally, SRE teams use CI/CD tools to perform change management and continuous testing. It ensures the successful deployment of code alterations.
How You Can Learn SRE And DevOps
You can join Wolf Careers Inc. to learn the technical and soft skills of SRE and DevOps. To assist your training plan, we offer the best SRE and DevOps training. Wolf Careers Inc. also offers many other certifications that you can enroll for.
You can enroll in our SRE training and DevOps training today to gain professional skills. Our courses are specially designed for beginners. It will help you start learning SRE and DevOps from scratch up to the expert level. After completion, you will be able to apply for the expert-level SRE and DevOps roles.
Site Reliability Engineering (SRE) is a Google-developed method to carry out and manage services. SRE is a method that we use to achieve and measure reliability through operations and engineering. As a result, the system becomes more reliable. It ensures customer satisfaction and reduces the frequency of system downtime.
DevOps certification training helps you to gain all the necessary skills and expertise. You will need them to become successful DevOps professionals. You can earn DevOps training certification following a combination of:
- Training programs
- Performance review
- Other ways that may help to showcase your skills.