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DevOps Practices: From Magic to Tools

Over the years, DevOps has evolved from being exotic into a set of practices and technologies that help to effectively solve applied problems and bring tangible benefits to companies.

Today’s story is all about Dmitriy Kharlamov, our DevOps, and his long journey from bash to GitOps.

How did you start your career?

I started as an electrician at a factory. Then I realized that I didn’t want to work with my hands, but I wanted to work with my head. My first job as a DevOps got started in the ePayments project. There, after a long stagnation in development, I studied very quickly. There they gave me a complete carte blanche, and I applied practices from smartbooks, applied automation, I managed to speed up releases from three to four hours of manual labor to 10 minutes after pressing one button.

What does Provectus do?

The main direction is consulting in the field of ML/AI. We help launch start-ups, develop software for customers. is surely an unusual project. Provectus is the wonderful world of machine learning. Before meeting them I heard that they are mathematicians, wh train models, guess with numbers… And in general, it was the right impression.

What do you like the most about Provectus?

At Provectus, we have many different projects, from typical to very unusual. Often, launching a project, and even more so a startup, without business knowledge or without understanding the final infrastructure is a pain for both the Ops team and Dev. It is necessary to react quickly to the situation, to be able to expand/ reduce/replace people on the project or the entire stack. But no matter what happens, you need to do well and meet certain standards.

What prompted the creation of the Swiss-Army-Kube?

We created a tool that allows us to deploy the basic infrastructure in AWS with a focus on EKS, and, importantly, delete everything that was created without a trace. We decided to call the project Swiss-Army-Kube. We had everything needed – a lot of experience and many engineers (a perfect base on building such a tool). We made it public because it is a part of the marketing strategy. The idea of knowledge sharing is close to me. It is a kind of IT communism in all its glory.

How long does it take to build a team, where to start, and what mistakes are best avoided?

You have to trust the team and let everyone do their job. It is important to build an open dialogue and find joint solutions to the problem. Because both failure and success are the credit of the entire team.

What projects inspire you personally?

Where there is no rigid framework, you can show imagination or where there is a challenge – where you can grow.

What hard skills does a DevOps engineer need and what soft skills do you acquire over time?

It is worth understanding the specifics of our and foreign markets. We do not have a training base and an adequate understanding of what a DevOps engineer should do. Of the hard skills, I can name the administration base, knowledge of operating systems and scripts, the ability to read several popular languages, understanding the principle of building code, how certificates work, and the ability to highlight problems. And an important quality is to google, find the information necessary for work.

What trends have emerged in DevOps over the past year?

I began to hear about ML more often. There is a general trend of switching to a service in order to deal with low-level tasks as little as possible. This is partly good. You can concentrate on your tasks.

Are you excited about Dmitriy’s story? Don’t hesitate to send us your CV!

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