DevOps Challenges and Version Control
November 20, 2018

Version Control Best Practices Affect Your DevOps Challenges

Version Control

Why Are Version Control Best Practices Important?

Every year since 2014, DORA (the DevOps Research and Assessment group) has called out the effective use of version control as a consistent predictor of performance among top teams.

But your VCS affects more than performance.

Turns out, there’s also a correlation between achieving DevOps and effectively implementing version control best practices.

The Correlation Between Your VCS, DevOps Best Practices, and Solving DevOps Challenges

Perforce partnered with to understand how version control systems enable large-scale DevOps.

More than 450 people responded to the survey, and the respondents were a great cross-section of practitioners in the DevOps community. It included DevOps engineers, software developers, IT/software architects, and IT leaders. The collection of responses gives us a good perspective into the DevOps challenges that teams face at large enterprise.

It is clear from the responses in this survey that version control can address a number of challenges that enterprises encounter when they try to achieve DevOps at scale.

Read the Full Report to Learn:

Your peers’ version control best practices

How your peers overcome DevOps challenges

The DevOps best practices your peers use

How to achieve higher-quality development

How to achieve faster time to market


The 6 Biggest DevOps Challenges

People who responded to the survey develop software for a variety of industries. Their expertise includes developing:

  • Enterprise software
  • Web and mobile application software
  • Software for the financial software
  • Software for semiconductors, embedded, and IoT

Regardless of the type of software they develop, a few themes were clear. For example, 63% of respondents indicated that performance for CI/CD was a major challenge. Another theme? The DevOps challenges people face can be solved by using an enterprise-class version control system. It brings order, performance, and a single source of truth to all components.

Tim Russel, the Chief Product Officer at Perforce, talks about the survey results.

DevOps Challenge 1: Continuous Integration/Continuous Delivery

When teams invest thousands of dollars (or hundreds of thousands) into their software, it’s with the expectation that it will improve performance. And it should.

Yet even though 98.8% of respondents use a version control system, 63% of them named CI/CD performance as a problem with their current VCS.

Continuous Integration is a key DevOps best practice. Achieving CI includes giving developers real-time feedback to improve quality. But it can cause bottlenecks on the VCS server. If your version control system isn’t fast and high performing, it won’t be able to keep up with this core aspect of CI.

DevOps Challenge 2: Non-Optimal Developer Productivity

The most expensive issue with development is non-optimal developer productivity. But if you have developers sitting around waiting for builds, that’s exactly what you have.

According to the survey, the two things that slow teams the most are testing and waiting for code reviews.

Developers who sit around waiting for code reviews are a worst-case scenario. They’re waiting for feedback on their code. And if they start their next task and then get feedback, their productivity is negatively impacted by context-switching.

The right VCS combines speed and performance with built-in code review applications. This alleviates the stress of testing and waiting.

DevOps Challenge 3: Distributed Teams

In today’s work environment, more and more people work remotely. According to the survey, 71% are based in multinational locations or work remotely.

But even though the majority of respondents work on distributed teams, about half the respondents also said that developers complain about slow commits and merges.

The right VCS can intelligently distribute source code so all developers – regardless of their location – feel like they’re working on the same server. More importantly, they can always be confident that the work they’re checking out is the correct version.

DevOps Challenge 4: Managing Build Artifacts

As software gets more complex, the size of assets also continues to increase. But even though production-grade assets are growing, DevOps teams struggle with managing those assets.

Only 28% of teams keep their production-grade assets in their VCS. While about 40% use an artifact manager.

Assuming your VCS is fast and secure, storing production-grade assets in your VCS is super convenient:

  • It saves money. You don’t need additional licenses for an artifact manager.
  • It improves security. Developers can go shopping for code in-house.
  • It provides a source of truth. Source code and build artifacts are all in one place for a single source of truth.
  • It streamlines DevOps. Testing tools only have one system to interface with.

DevOps Challenge 5: Scalability 

Git is a great resource for developers and small development teams. It’s free and widely popular.

But there’s a problem with Git. It was never designed to scale.

Now there are enterprise solutions that give developers the Git interface they’re familiar with. But they also get scalability, global replication, and high-performance for moving files and performing builds. These are key for achieving DevOps best practices. And these are things you can’t get from an open-source Git server.

44% of Teams Who Follow DevOps Best Practices Will Replace Their VCS

Do you need a new version control system? Almost half of the respondents plan to replace their version control software. Why? Their current VCS is preventing them from achieving DevOps and DevOps best practices, like CI/CD.

Companies can make dramatic improvements in their efficiency by improving what they get from their VCS. Teams who want to achieve version control best practices choose Helix Core – the fastest, most securable version control system. Or they choose Helix4Git to make Git scale.

Use Helix Core for Version Control
Make Git Scale With Helix4Git

Start Achieving DevOps Best Practices. Download the Full Report.

The survey brought out several interesting conclusions about the challenges organizations have with achieving enterprise DevOps.

Download the full report to learn what you can bring to your organization to achieve faster time to market, higher quality, and better customer engagement as you build modern applications.