DevOps unifies software development and operations in cross-functional teams to improve software delivery and operations (SDO) performance. Ideally, cross-functional DevOps teams independently deploy their services, but the correct operation of a service often demands other services, requiring coordination to ensure the correct deployment order. This issue is currently solved either with a central deployment or manual out-of-band communication across teams, e.g., via phone, chat, or email. Unfortunately, both contradict the independence of teams, hindering SDO performance – the reason why DevOps is adopted in the first place.
In this work, we conduct a study on 73 IT professionals, showing that, in practice, they resort to manual coordination for correct deployments even if they expect better SDO performance with fully automated approaches. To address this issue, we propose μs ([mju:z] “muse”), a novel IaC system automating deployment coordination in a fully decentralized fashion, still retaining compatibility with DevOps practice – in contrast to today’s solutions. We implement µs, demonstrate that it effectively enables automated coordination, introduces negligible definition overhead, has no performance overhead, and is broadly applicable, as shown by the migration of 64 third-party IaC projects.