Monday 4 October 2010

Perspectives on deploying to production

One of the things that I really appreciate about attending job interviews is the opportunity to learn what people from other organisations and industries consider to be challenges.

Take deployment as an example, some organisations are very particular about changing as little as possible on their production environments, whereas other organisations regard a complete replacement of the entire application server as the preferred approach to deploying updates.

From my recent experience disk space was quite limited and not much consideration had been given to externalising logfiles etc, so having a parallel version of the entire servlet container and activating the update by shutting down, changing a symbolic link, and then restarting was not an option.

As a result of the space limitation, our deployment process actually involved extracting a single changed file from a "platform" artifact and a sequence of manual copying steps.

No doubt the Continuous Delivery book will have some wisdom to be absorbed on this topic.

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