How DevOps Should Use DBaaS (Database-as-a-Service) To Optimize Their Application Development​

This post was written by Wendy Dessler of The Blog Frog.


Database-as-a-Service (DBaaS) is quickly gaining in popularity across the tech world. These software platform solutions helps users easily manage their database operations without having to really understand any of the abstractions. This allows developers, DBA’s and DevOps engineers to quickly automate their backups, create new SQL and NoSQL clusters, and monitor the performance of their databases for their application without requiring any internal database expertise.

DBaaS falls under the umbrella of Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) where the platform itself is actually a database or several databases. This is a great choice for DevOps in particular because it allows for more developer agility, productivity, and also security.

Flexibility and scalability are becoming more important in the world of DevOps and technology in general, and we all know how fast this world moves. Businesses need new ways to keep up with the competition, and developers are looking for an easy, self-service model for managing their databases in order to optimize their app development. Let’s break down the individual benefits so you can decide if DBaaS is right for your DevOps team.

1. Outsourced Security and Administration

How DevOps Should Use DBaaS - Security AdministrationIn this day and age, outsourcing is increasingly common. In 2017, 64 percent of the revenue earned in outsourcing is from information technology (IT) outsourcing. Developers are taking advantage of this as well in order to focus on productivity and new projects.

Maintaining a database is a big task. You need to handle backups, recovery, optimization, upgrading, creating, and patching problems. If you don’t have a dedicated team to maintain your database, this can be quite overwhelming. Monitoring alone can take an entire team’s effort if you don’t have the right tools. Check out this post to learn more about crucial database monitoring metrics to watch. Even if you do have a dedicated team, you might be scaling your growth faster than you expected and you need extra hands on deck. All of this can be automated through a fully managed DBaaS platform.

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In addition to admin duties, outsourcing your database management will also help with security measures. Today, security is essential in your app development process as we increasingly hear of new companies and applications being hacked by cybercriminals. Needless to say, this can have a detrimental impact on your brand reputation which is why it’s crucial you take every measure available to fortify the security around your application. Most DBaaS platforms have great security features available to help you immediately boost your defenses, like SSL encryption, local SSD support, and IP whitelists to manage your access control. It’s also important to check for Virtual Private Cloud (VPC/VNET) support to protect your data from the internet, Security Group support, and full database super user access so you always have the administrative control over your clusters.

Security and admin outsourcing is an effective way to focus more on what matters to your company and less on these daily tasks that take time away from new product innovations. You can’t afford to overlook security and administrative tasks, so that’s one of the many reasons DBaaS is so successful.

2. Save Money in the Cloud

How DevOps Should Use DBaaS - Save MoneyUnmanaged cloud-based services can become expensive if you need to scale your database and storage quickly. Similarly, purchasing expensive on-premise hardware is expensive, bulky, and requires serious internal expertise. The only way to keep your software future-proof is to be ready to grow as needed.

With DBaaS, you only need to invest the resources you need at the time when you actually require it. Gone are the days where businesses are prematurely scaling and losing thousands on new software, hardware, or capacity that you’re not ready for or could quickly outgrow. DBaaS is something that scales with your company, no matter how large or small. Plus, you don’t have to worry about investing in maintenance for your database which can save on employee personnel costs.

3. Track Your Data and Usage

How DevOps Should Use DBaaS - Track UsageDatabase as a Service also provides incredible insight into the performance of your deployments. By hosting your databases in the cloud, you can quickly access all of the information about your performance, usage, space, and resource consumption, even extract data anytime from one single management console. Most DBaaS providers offer a dashboard view of your cluster performance along with real-time alerts to keep you informed on the health of your deployments.

This is an easy way to keep your usage more effective and efficient. While you no longer hold the heavy responsibility of managing all of the databases at your organization, you’re still in complete control which is important for DevOps teams that who are optimizing for space, services, and plugins, etc.

4. Build Your Scalability and Availability

How DevOps Should Use DBaaS - ScalabilityOnce again, scalability is everything in today’s development world. You need on-demand scalability and that’s what DBaaS is at its most essential level. When you outgrow your database capacity, it’s easy to expand without any complex processes or downtime. Scaling your database servers manually to add more CPU, memory, or disk space is a time-consuming process, and that’s time that many DevOps teams do not have when they’re quickly producing new apps. With a DBaaS partner, you can seamlessly scale your servers in a single click and the platform will automatically take care of the tedious follow-up to ensure a smooth upgrade across your entire deployment.

Another aspect of preparing a healthy production deployment is ensuring high availability in the cloud. This is a crucial configuration to protect your data against any potential failures so your application stays online and available to your users. As always, managing and maintaining a high availability framework takes careful planning and design which is a complex undertaking for someone lacking this expertise. DevOps love DBaaS for this reason, because you can distribute your data through replica sets with nodes in different availability zones of your cloud region. So, if one node goes down, your replica set with automatically take over keeping your application online without any downtime.

The Rise of DBaaS

In the next few years, DBaaS is expected to become more common across DevOps teams. As organizations continue to require more database types, such as MongoDB, Redis, MySQL, and PostgreSQL, and stronger pushes towards innovation to establish their positions in the market, outsourcing your database management to a DBaaS solution becomes an easy decision. Having specialists on your side when things go wrong (and when they go right) will only help you grow.

Consider your organization’s tech system. If you’re planning to grow your tech stack in the future, it’s time to outsource your database hosting and management to ensure the continuity and compatibility of your infrastructure. You have a lot of options to choose from with DBaaS, and like most of this industry, there’s no one-size-fits-all. Make the switch today to get an edge on the competition.

Learn More About DBaaS


Kristi is the Marketing Manager at ScaleGrid. She has over 10 years of experience working with high-tech startups, with a background in marketing, finance, operations, and product management.


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