DevOps Roadmap 2024: Learn to Become a DevOps Engineer

Anshuman Singh
23 Min Read

DevOps represents a paradigm shift in the software delivery process, revolutionizing how applications are deployed and managed. Gone are the days of lengthy deployment cycles; with DevOps, the journey from planning to deployment is seamless and continuous. In this DevOps Roadmap article, we dive into the dynamic strategies and essential tools necessary to excel in this modern approach to software development and delivery.

What is a DevOps Engineer?

A DevOps Engineer’s daily tasks encompass infrastructure management, automation scripting, and system monitoring. Junior roles typically involve resource setup and basic system administration, while senior positions focus on strategic planning, team collaboration, and incident handling. While responsibilities vary by organization and team size, these core duties remain consistent. Despite organizational differences, DevOps Engineers predominantly engage in these tasks, ensuring the smooth operation of software delivery pipelines.

DevOps Engineer Prerequisites and Qualifications

As someone wise said, “You cannot build a great building with weak foundations”. So, if you want to excel and build a career as a DevOps Engineer, you must first understand the fundamentals of computer science and how everything works.

It’s better if you enrolled in any BE/Btech, BCA, or BSc in Computer Science, IT, or a major in Maths. If you are a self-taught developer or someone switching to IT you should focus on some technical subjects as

  1. Operating System
  2. Data Structures and Algorithms
  3. Computer Networks
  4. Distributed Systems (Advanced)

For anyone starting, having knowledge in these subjects will help you understand complex topics and build a good starting foundation.

DevOps Roadmap: How to Become a DevOps Engineer

As a DevOps Engineer, understanding the overview of the DevOps lifecycle is crucial, with a particular focus on automation and monitoring. This roadmap aims to provide a structured approach to learning essential topics, empowering individuals to acquire the knowledge and skills necessary to excel in the role.

This DevOps roadmap plays a crucial role as it offers a clear path for skill development, typically taking learners from beginner to proficient or advanced levels within a specific timeframe. By following this roadmap, you can expect to gain proficiency in key DevOps concepts and tools, enabling you to transition into a highly skilled DevOps Engineer role within a typical learning duration. Let us begin!

Step 1: Select a Programming Language

As a DevOps Engineer learning a programming language is very skillful because you will need to automate, integrate, and customize, or sometimes while automation you may encounter some complex issues. So having some knowledge about programming languages will surely help. Based on the project and requirements language may change but the idea remains the same in every language. Here are some top programming languages to choose from –

  1. Python
  2. Go

Step 2: Basics of Operating System (OS)

Operating systems are the foundation of computing environments, acting as the link between hardware and software. To effectively manage the applications and optimize infrastructure and deployment pipelines DevOps Engineers must be well-versed with Operating Systems before moving to any other technology.

  1. Windows
  2. Linux
  3. Ubuntu / Debian
    • RHEL / Derivatives: It is widely used in enterprises and derivatives like CentOS and Fedora offering similar features and compatibility.
    • SUSE Linux: SUSE Linux is favored for the enterprise-grade support it provides.
  4. Unix
    • FreeBSD: FreeBSD is good with performance 
    • OpenBSD: OpenBSD is good with security
    • NetBSD: NetBSD is good with portability

Step 3: Command-line Interface

Having knowledge of Command Line Interface (CLI) is very important for a DevOps Engineer as it provides more advanced features that are hidden in the graphical user interface and gives you precise controls of the system or tool. CLI is common across different environments and OS while giving you remote access to the Infrastructure and System from any location.

Using CLI gives you a deeper understanding of the underlying systems, improving troubleshooting and problem-solving skills, which is an important skill when working on servers & managing Infrastructure. Some of the important things you should learn or become good at are

  • Scripting
  • Editors
  • Networking Tools
  • Process Monitoring
  • Performance Monitoring
  • Text Manipulation

Step 4: Version Control System and Hosting

Including version control and hosting in your DevOps roadmap is important because it helps facilitate collaborations, code management & version tracking which is essential for the DevOps lifecycle or wanting to go for the GitOps approach.

  • Version Control System – GIT
    Git is the most renowned distributed version control system. Key features include making repositories, branching, making commits and merges, allowing developers to track changes, and collaborating on projects.
  • Hosting (Github, Bitbucket, Gitlab)
    Now that we have our code base being tracked using Git (version control system) we want to host it to make it either available to the public or to the organization we are working in. Some of the hosting providers are Github, BitBucket, Gitlab, etc.

Step 5: Learn About Cloud Providers

In the DevOps roadmap, cloud computing is an important skill to have, because in the end all our applications will be hosted on a server and it could either be on a cloud or on-premise. Some major cloud providers in 2024 are:

  • AWS (Amazon Web Services)
    It provides many services like EC2, and S3 for storage, lambda for serverless, EKS for Kubernetes, and many other services that can help in deploying your software.
  • AZURE
    Azure is provided by Microsoft. It has many services that it offers like AWS but the main aspect for us is the Azure DevOps tools, which are suite-integrated CICD tools, version control & project management tools.
  • GCP (Google Cloud Platform)
    Google Cloud provides the same services as many other cloud providers and is provided by Google.

Although most of the cloud service providers provide the same services, the key difference is the prices they offer on the resources and some key services that are native to that provider.

Step 6: Containerization – Docker

Docker is an important tool to have in your skill set for any DevOps Engineer. Earlier while deploying any application you had to package the app, and then download the dependencies onto the server for running your application, and it was not easy to scale either. In the current scenario, every organization uses Docker to package and deploy the application because of its simplicity and effortless application packaging in writing a simple Dockerfile.

Things you should know:

  • Run containers
  • Inspect active containers
  • Docker Networking
  • Persist data with Docker Volumes
  • Dockerize apps using Dockerfiles
  • Run multiple containers using Docker-Compose
  • Work with Docker Repository

Step 7: CI/CD Tools

In today’s landscape where development is quick, using Agile methodology doing tasks manually would be a waste of time, money, and resources. As a DevOps Engineer, you should know how to automate and streamline the workflow using various CICD tools and services provided to run tests and deploy apps faster.

Some important things you should learn:

  • Writing Automation Scripts for testing and deployment
  • Setting up monitoring & feedback cycle
  • Best Practices
  • Setup notifications to channels (For e.g. slack, discord, etc)

Tools to learn:

  • GitLab CI
  • Jenkins
  • GitHub Actions
  • Circle CI

Step 8: Container Orchestration

We have learned about containers earlier and how they could be scaled easily. It is because of the Container Orchestration tool. Using a container orchestrator we can create several replicas of our containers. The popular ones are Kubernetes and Docker Swarm.

Kubernetes
It is an open-source container orchestration platform developed by Google. It helps automate the scaling, creation of replicas, and management of containerized applications.

Step 9: Networking and Security, Protocols

Networking and Security protocols are fundamental aspects of DevOps practice, as most of the work is on servers & production environments. Learning Networking concepts will help you in effectively managing and troubleshooting infrastructure, deploying and managing microservices and containerized applications, automating network tasks, and managing cloud-based deployments.

This helps to bridge the gap between the Developers and Operations and helps you to streamline the process and ensure smooth delivery.

Some concepts you should learn are:

  • FTP / SFTP
  • HTTP / HTTPS
  • SSL / TLS
  • DNS
  • SSH
  • Protocols

Step 10: Setting Up Firewalls, Proxy and Servers

Learning how to set up Firewalls, proxies, and servers will help you enhance the security and performance of the infrastructure via firewalls and controlling unauthorized access to the servers. Knowing how to set up proxy servers, and load balancers and how to install certs will be a crucial part to know for anyone becoming a DevOps Engineer. Some of the key concepts one should learn are:

  • Firewall
  • Proxy
  • Web Servers

Step 11: Understand Serverless

Moving ahead in this DevOps roadmap, next is learning serverless computing. It is a cloud computing model where the resources are dynamically allocated and provisioned on servers, allowing developers to focus on code rather than worrying about resource allocation or server management.

Being a DevOps engineer, here are some important topics to learn –

  • Cloudflare
  • AWS Lambda
  • Azure Functions
  • Vercel

Step 12: Infrastructure Provisioning

As a DevOps Engineer, you need to manage and set up infrastructure but using the old methods of using ClickOps would take time and be very hard to replicate if you want to scale. Infrastructure provisioning has now become easier. Since as a DevOps engineer your task is to automate and scale resources on demand learning Infrastructure provisioning using scripts would be an add-on to your resume.

Some popular tools you should focus on:

  • Terraform
  • Pulumi
  • CloudFormation
  • AWS CDK

Step 13: Configuration Management

Configuration Management is a process of monitoring and controlling the Infrastructure component, software, and systems. In an organization, you might need to configure more than 1 server. Imagine manually doing it to thousands or hundreds of servers; it would be time-consuming and dealing with errors constantly. So as a DevOps engineer, you can automate repetitive tasks using a Configuration management tool.

Some tools you should learn:

  • Ansible
  • Chef
  • Puppet

Step 14: Infrastructure Monitoring

Infrastructure monitoring is a process of analyzing the performance, availability, and health of the infrastructure components. Infrastructure collects data from various sources including system logs, metrics, and streams. Using it you could monitor the application and view metrics more easily for a detailed graph of what could go wrong in the future and avoid it. Some tools you should learn:

  • Grafana
  • Datadog
  • Prometheus
  • Zabbix

Step 15: Application Monitoring

Application monitoring is important as with new deployments pushed to the main branch there is a chance that with some bug fix or changes made our application goes down to avoid any such circumstances it’s better to continuously track, measure, and analyze the metrics. With the data collected the Devs and managers get some insights into their performance insights.

  • Datadog
    Datadog is an analytical and monitoring tool that offers crucial real-time visibility into the infrastructure, performance, and logs.
  • New Relic
    New Relic is a cloud-based observability tool that helps organizations monitor and optimize their application.
  • Jaeger
    Jaeger is a monitoring tool designed for end-to-end distributed microservices architectures using Jaeger it provides deep insights into different microservices across services and components.
  • OpenTelemetry
    Open Telemetry is an open-source framework that provides standardized instrumentation, API and libraries for collecting and monitoring.
  • AppDynamic
    AppDynamics is an application performance monitoring (APM) solution that can be used to monitor, analyze and optimize the performance of the application in real-time.

Step 16: Other DevOps Roadmap Topics to Learn

  1. Logs Management
    It involves collecting, storing, analyzing, and visualizing log data generated by applications, systems, and infrastructure components.
  2. Artifact Management
    It is the practice of managing and versioning software artifacts, including binaries, libraries, dependencies, and configuration files. Artifact management tools provide repositories for storing and sharing artifacts, ensuring consistency, traceability, and reproducibility in software builds and deployments.
  3. Artifactory
    Artifactory is a universal artifact repository manager developed by JFrog, designed to support artifact management and distribution for various package formats and technologies
  4. Nexus
    Nexus Repository Manager is an open-source artifact repository manager provided by Sonatype, offering support for storing and managing software artifacts in Maven, npm, Docker, and other formats.
  5. Service Mesh
    In a microservice architecture or a distributed system, we can use a service mesh that sits in the infrastructure layer. Service mesh helps the different services and components in the stack talk.
  6. Cloud Design Patterns
    Cloud design patterns are reusable architectural patterns and best practices for designing and implementing cloud-native applications and services. Cloud design patterns address common challenges such as scalability, availability, fault tolerance, and data management in cloud environments, helping organizations build resilient and efficient cloud solutions.

Exploring Career Opportunities with DevOps Skills

Learning a bunch of tools will give you an upper hand because of your diverse knowledge and can help you get many other roles including the core DevOps Engineer role.

  1. DevOps Engineer
    DevOps Engineer As a DevOps engineer, you’ll play a crucial role in automating and optimizing the software development lifecycle. You’ll collaborate with development, operations, and quality assurance teams to implement continuous integration, continuous delivery, and infrastructure as code practices. DevOps Engineer salary in India ranges between ₹6 – 10 Lakhs per annum.
  2. ​​Site Reliability Engineer (SRE)
    SREs focus on ensuring the reliability, scalability, and performance of large-scale distributed systems. They use DevOps principles and practices to design resilient and highly available systems, monitor system health and performance, and automate incident response and resolution processes. Site Reliability Engineer salary in India ranges between ₹7 – 19 Lakhs per annum.
  3. Cloud Engineer
    Cloud engineers specialize in designing, implementing, and managing cloud infrastructure and services. With DevOps skills, you’ll be well-equipped to leverage cloud platforms such as AWS, Azure, and Google Cloud to build scalable and resilient applications. Cloud Engineer salary in India ranges between ₹5 – 8 Lakhs per annum.
  4. System Administration
    DevOps Engineer is proficient in system administration and excels in managing and maintaining IT infrastructure, including servers, networks, and storage systems. System Administration salary in India ranges between ₹4.5 – 6.5 Lakhs per annum.
  5. Software Developer
    As you have the knowledge of DevOps Engineer and know how to code you will have leverage as you know how to automate the development to deployment into production. Software Developer salary in India ranges between ₹5 – 8 Lakhs per annum.
  6. Test Automation Engineer
    Writing scripts to automate application testing procedures would be the main responsibility of a test automation engineer. Test Automation Engineer salary in India ranges between ₹4 – 6 Lakhs per annum.
  7. Network Engineer
    A Network Engineer specializes in designing, implementing, and managing resilient and scalable network architectures to support modern cloud-native applications. Network Engineer salary in India ranges between ₹4 – 5.5 Lakhs per annum.

Note: all the salary information was taken from Glassdoor.

Suggestions for Aspiring DevOps Engineers with Limited or No IT Background

Follow the roadmap for DevOps. If you are a fresher with limited or no IT background, at first you will be overwhelmed with all the things that are there to learn but take it step by step. Master the fundamentals & Linux as they are the stepping stones to becoming a good DevOps Engineer.

Documentations are your best friends, reading through documentation is a skill very few have. In the process of learning it’s easy to get stuck into “Tutorial hell”, practice what you learned, get into errors and try to solve them & make projects that will help you understand the technology more. Take help from seniors in the field, and join a community with other individuals on the path.

How Scaler can help you in your DevOps Journey?

Scaler DevOps course curriculum is an expert-designed course that will help you learn the DevOps concept in a structured and more efficient way and prepare you for a real-world job. As we know learning and actually implementing something are very different so in the course you will be working with a real-world sandbox environment and different DevOps projects for handling production issues, automating infrastructure creation, building CI/CD pipelines, microservice orchestration, building metrics dashboards etc.

In this course, you can choose your mentors, with 1:1 guidance from mentors, dedicated Assignments, and projects with training and placement support. This will take you way ahead of others in the field who are starting in DevOps.

Summary of DevOps Roadmap

  • Getting the prerequisites right: Before getting into DevOps, having a good in-depth knowledge of the prerequisites will set you apart from other DevOps Engineers. You should have enough knowledge about Networking concepts, Operating Systems and Data Structures, and Algorithms.
  • Automation: The delivery, testing, and deployment processes must all be automated, which makes automation a crucial component of the DevOps process.
  • Important concepts to focus on: Linux, Cloud, Docker, K8s, CI/CD, and Monitoring.
  • Keep Learning: In the world of DevOps, new tools emerge solving some problems in the ecosystem. As a DevOps Engineer, you must know what tool is to be used and how to be used. Documentations are your best friends.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is DevOps a good career?

As a Junior DevOps Engineer, most of the work includes managing infrastructures so if you’re someone who enjoys working with Linux or scripting and automating stuff, DevOps is a very good career.

How to become a DevOps engineer in India?

Following the roadmap given can help you become a DevOps Engineer in India. By following the roadmap you have acquired various tools and skill sets to become a good DevOps Engineer.

Can I become a DevOps engineer without experience?

Yes, you can. Just keep on learning and apply the stuff you learn by making projects or doing internships.

How long does it take to become a DevOps engineer?

Based upon your learning and how much you can grasp, learning would take around 8 months to a year for a person who doesn’t have a clue. But you always have new tools in the market to learn so, learning is never-ending.

What are the most important DevOps engineer skills?

Problem-solving and critical thinking are everyone’s best friends. In a lot of scenarios, you will face some problems during the deployment. At that time you must think logically and try to solve the problem.

What is the Future Scope of DevOps?

As per the case studies available and market reports, DevOps is going to evolve as the times come.

What does a DevOps engineer do?

As a DevOps Engineer, your day-to-day tasks involve managing infrastructures, automating pipelines and monitoring.

What are the Five Phases of DevOps?

The five phases of DevOps are plan, develop, build, test and deploy.

What is the DevOps lifecycle?

The DevOps lifecycle is an ongoing software development, deployment, and operations process that is powered by feedback, automation, and teamwork. In order to produce high-quality software quickly and consistently, it goes through several stages, including planning, coding, building, testing, deploying, operating, and monitoring.

SOURCES:Glassdoor
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Anshuman Singh, Co-Founder of Scaler, is on a mission to forge over a million world-class engineers. With his roots in engineering, having contributed to building Facebook's chat and messages and the revamped Messenger, Anshuman is deeply committed to elevating engineering education. His vision focuses on delivering the right learning outcomes to nurture a new generation of tech leaders. Anshuman's journey is defined by his dedication to unlocking the potential of aspiring engineers, guiding them toward achieving excellence in the tech world.
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