DevOps vs SRE – What’s the difference?


DevOps vs SRE – What’s the difference?


With the growing complexity of application development, organizations are increasingly adopting methodologies that enable reliable, scalable software. DevOps vs SRE (Site Reliability Engineering) are two methods for improving the product release cycle by enhancing collaboration, automation, and monitoring. Both approaches use automation and collaboration to assist teams in developing resilient and dependable software, but there are significant distinctions in what they offer and how they work.

As a result, the purpose of DevOps vs SRE is explored in this article. We’ll look at both techniques’ advantages, disadvantages, and major aspects.

What is DevOps?

DevOps is an approach to the development of software. DevOps adheres to lean or agile practices, distinguishing this approach from other methods. DevOps concentrates on enabling continual delivery, a regular release, and an automated method of developing apps and software. The DevOps approach comprises the norms and technology practices that allow the rapid flow through planned activities.

The DevOps process has the following goals in mind:

  • Speed up the time to get products to the market.
  • Reduce the time to develop software.
  • Increase the responsiveness to market demands.

DevOps combines operations and development teams to deploy software smoothly and efficiently. It is based on creating an environment of close communication and an extremely high degree of automation. According to DevOps rules, the team responsible for programming is also accountable for maintaining the code once it has been put into production. This means that traditionally separate teams of operations and development collaborate to improve software released.

What are the advantages of DevOps?


First, DevOps improves software delivery speed by making minor changes and releasing them more often. So, companies can get products to market quicker. Updating and fixing are quicker and easier, while the software’s stability is increased. Furthermore, even small modifications are easy to roll back in a short time when needed. Another benefit is that the software delivery is safer.

What DevOps does and how

DevOps is a fantastic way to create an environment of collaboration right from the beginning. The focus is on the teams that have to be able to work together to get the code into production and then keep it. It implies that the DevOps team is accountable for creating the code, fixing the bugs, and everything else associated with the code. The DevOps procedure is built around five core principles:

  • Eliminate silos – The DevOps team’s mission is to share information from the operations and development. This means that more insight is gained, and better communication is encouraged.
  • Accept failure and fail quickly. The DevOps procedure identifies methods to minimize the risk. In this way, similar errors are not likely to occur twice. The team uses test automation to spot the flaws earlier in the release cycle.
  • Introduce changes gradually. The DevOps team frequently makes small, incremental changes instead of deploying massive modifications to the production. This makes it simpler to examine changes and identify problems.
  • Utilize automation and tools. The team constructs the release pipeline using automation tools. This speeds up the process, improves accuracy, and reduces the risk of human mistakes. The unnecessary manual effort is minimized.
  • Monitor everything. Take note of everything DevOps utilizes data to evaluate the effects of every action undertaken. The four most frequently used metrics that measure the effectiveness of the DevOps process are the time it takes to make changes and the frequency of deployment, the time it takes to restore service and the failure rate.

To function effectively, DevOps needs some powerful tools to run their workflow. They use versions to control all of the code (using tools such as GitHub as well as GitLab) and Continuous Integration software (Jenkins, Spinnaker, etc. ), deployment automation tools, test automation tools (Selenium, etc. ) and tools for managing incidents (PagerDuty, Opsgenie, etc.)

Read more: Top 30 Most Effective DevOps Tools for 2022

What is Site Reliability Engineering (SRE)?

The concept of Site Reliability Engineering was first introduced in 2003. It was initially developed to provide a framework for developers when creating large-scale software. Today, SRE is carried out by experts with solid development backgrounds who employ engineering methods to resolve common problems while running systems in production. It’s like a system engineer that’s also responsible for operations. It’s a blend of system operation responsibilities, developing software, and engineers in software. Various duties are covered – writing and building code, distributing the code, and finally having the code in production.

The primary goal of SRE is to create a stable and super-scalable system or a software program. In the past, operations staff and software engineers were two groups with different types of work. They dealt with problems in different ways. Site Reliability Engineering goes beyond the conventional approach, and its collaborative nature has been gaining in popularity.

SRE employs 3 Service Level Commitments to measure how well a system performs:

  • Services level agreements (SLAs) define the needed reliability, performance, and latency as intended by end-users.
  • Services level objectives (SLOs) target values and goals established by SRE teams to be achieved to meet SLAs.
  • Service Level Indicators (SLIs) measure specific parameters and aspects that indicate how well a system is conforming with the standards of SLOs. Typical SLIs include request latency, system throughput, lead time, development frequency, mean time to restore (MTTR), and availability error rate.

What are the advantages that come from Site Reliability Engineering?

Firstly, SRE enhances the uptime significantly. The approach focuses on keeping the platform or service no matter what. The tasks like disaster prevention, risk mitigation, reliability, and redundancy are of the utmost importance. The SRE team’s primary objective is to determine the most effective methods to stop problems before they may result in interruptions in service. This is especially important when dealing with massive systems. Another advantage is that Site Reliability Engineering helps brands reduce manual work, which gives developers more time to innovate. All flaws are identified and quickly fixed.

What is SRE does and how

The function that Site Reliability Engineering in a business is fairly simple – the SRE team ensures that the service or platform is readily available to users whenever they wish to use it.

What are the responsibilities of SRE?

  • SRE eliminates silos differently than DevOps. SRE assists developers in creating more reliable systems because they focus on operations and development. As a result, the developers have a much better context for supporting systems in production.
  • SRE relies on metrics to help improve the efficiency of the system. This perspective on reliability is extremely beneficial in determining if a release for a change is going into production. The core of SRE is three indicators: SLO (service-level objective), SLA (service-level agreement) and SLI (service-level indicator).
  • Site Reliability Engineering handles support escalation issues. It also encourages customers to take part in and report on incident reviews.
  • The SRE team evaluates and validates the new features and updates and develops the system’s documentation.

SRE tools

SRE teams depend on automatizing routine tasks by employing tools and methods that standardize the operation across the software life cycle. A few tools and technologies that aid in Site Reliability Engineering include:

  • Containers package applications in a unified environment across multiple deployment platforms, enabling cloud-native development.
  • Kubernetes is a well-known container orchestrator that can manage containers running across several environments effectively.
  • Cloud platforms allow you to create scalable, flexible, and reliable applications in distributed environments. The most popular platforms are Microsoft Azure, Amazon AWS and Google Cloud.
  • Tools for project planning and management let you control IT operations across distributed teams. A few of the most well-known tools are JIRA and Pivotal Tracker.
  • Tools for controlling source code like Subversion and GitHub eliminate the boundaries between operators and developers, allowing seamless collaboration and release of application delivery. Tools for controlling source code are Subversion as well as GitHub.

DevOps vs SRE – What makes them different?


DevOps is for writing and the deployment of code. On the other hand, SRE is more comprehensive, with the team taking a wider ‘end-user’s’ perspective while working on the system.

A DevOps team is working on an app or a product using an agile approach. They develop, test, deploy, and monitor apps in a manner that is fast, controlled, and high-quality. An SRE team is regularly providing the team of developers with feedback. The team’s goal is to harness the operations data and software engineering, mostly through automatizing IT operations tasks- all of which can speed up software delivery. A DevOps team’s mission is to make the whole company more efficient and efficient.

The goal of SRE is to streamline IT operations by using methodologies that were previously employed only by software engineers. Site Reliability Engineering focuses on keeping the application or platform available to customers (it focuses on the customers’ requirements through prioritizing SLA, SLI and SLO metrics). On the other hand, DevOps concentrates on the processes that help successfully deploy a product. Below are the distinctions between DevOps and SRE.

The role of the developer team

DevOps combines the skillsets of developers and IT operations engineers. SRE solves the problems of IT operations using the developer’s mindset and tools.


DevOps teams primarily work with the code. They write it, test it, and push it out into production to get software that will help someone’s problem. They also set up and run a CI/CD pipeline. Site Reliability Engineering has a more extensive method. The team conducts analyses to determine the reasons for why something went wrong. They’ll do whatever they can to stop the issue from continuing or reoccurring.

SRE vs DevOps – any similarities?

SRE and DevOps indeed have a lot in common since they are methodologies put in the process to monitor production and ensure that operation management works according to plan. They share a common goal: to achieve better results for complex distributed systems. Both agree that changes are necessary for improvement. Both are focused on people working together as a team with the same duties. DevOps and SRE consider that keeping everything functioning is the responsibility of all. Ownership is shared – from initial code writing to software builds to deployment to production and maintenance. In both SRE and DevOps, engineers write code and optimize it before deployment in production.

In summarizing, DevOps and SRE should collaborate toward the same goal.

Read more: The Importance of DevOps in Mobile App Development

What is the way SRE support DevOps principles & philosophies?

DevOps vs SRE aren’t competing for methods. This is because SRE is a practical method to address most DevOps issues.

In this section, we’ll look at how teams can use SRE to carry out the philosophies and concepts of DevOps:

Eliminating organizational silos

DevOps is a way to ensure that various departments/software teams aren’t isolated from one another and ensure that they all have a common objective.

SRE helps in this process by establishing the sharing of project responsibility between teams. With SRE, each team is using the same tools as well as techniques and codebase to help:

  • Uniformity
  • Continuous collaboration

Implementing gradual change

DevOps is a system that embraces slow, gradual change to allow for continuous improvements. SRE will enable teams to carry out regular, small updates that minimize the impact of changes on the availability of applications and stability.

Furthermore, SRE teams use CI/CD tools for change management and continuous testing to ensure effective deployment of changes to code.

Accepting the failure as normal

Both SRE and DevOps concepts consider failures and errors as inevitable occurrences. While DevOps’s goal is to manage runtime errors and enable groups to learn from these, SRE enforces error management through Service Level Commitments (SLx) to ensure that all failures are dealt with.

SRE also provides a cost of risk, which lets teams test failure limits for reevaluation and innovation.

Making use of tools and automation

Both DevOps vs SRE utilize automation to improve processes and delivery of services. SRE allows teams to use the same tools and services via flexible application programming interfaces (APIs). While DevOps encourages the use of technology that automates processes, SRE makes sure that every team member can access the updated automation tools and technologies.

Measure everything

Since both DevOps and SRE support automation, you’ll need to continuously monitor the developed systems to ensure every process runs as planned.

DevOps collects metrics via a feedback loop. However, SRE enforces measurement by offering SLIs, SLOs, and SLAs for measuring. Because Ops are defined by software, SRE monitors toil and reliability, ensuring consistent service delivery.

Read more: Top 10 DevOps Trends to Watch 2022

Summing up DevOps vs SRE

DevOps vs SRE are frequently referred to as two sides of the same coin, with SRE tools and techniques supporting DevOps philosophies and practices. SRE involves the use of principles of software engineering to automate and improve ITOps functions, for example:

  • Disaster response
  • Capacity planning
  • Monitoring

However, a DevOps model allows the quick release of software products through collaboration between operations and development teams.

Over the years, of all the companies that have implemented DevOps, 50% of enterprises have already implemented SRE to increase reliability. One reason is that SRE principles provide better monitoring and control of dynamic applications that depend on automation.

In the end, both methodologies aim to improve the end-to final cycle of an IT ecosystem, namely the lifecycle of an application by implementing DevOps and the management of operations lifecycle by using SRE.

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