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DevOpsGroup Blog WinOps Preview #4 – Tech Track #2 aka The Data Track!

WinOps Preview #4 – Tech Track #2 aka The Data Track!

WinOps, the world’s only dedicated “DevOps on Windows” conference, returns to London for its 3rd year on the 20th & 21st of September at CodeNode.

This year we have a workshop day on the Wed 20th Sept and then the main conference on the Thursday 21st.

We have 4 tracks overall:

  1. “The Microsoft Track” – featuring speakers direct from Microsoft talking both Tech & Culture including Steve Murawski and Ken Hansen
  2. “The Case Study Track” – real-world case studies from organisations that have implemented DevOps in a Window world including Facebook, ASOS, Callcredit and more
  3. Tech Track #1 – featuring great talks on ARM, Terraform, Ansible, Chocolatey (direct from @FerventCoder!) and more
  4. Tech Track #2 – focusing on Data Devops as many people are struggling with DevOps & Data!

Our final track, Tech Track #2, will largely focus in Data-related DevOps topics as this was a topic area specifically requested by the WinOps meetup community. With a slight detour into Open Source and Linux from Peter Mounce at the start!

Simon Sabin will cover a big picture overview of the current state of Data Devops, Ed’s will talk about DSC (both in general and with a database-specific focus), Alex will talk about making sure we’re integrating testing into our database CI/CD pipelines, and finally Ed will take us through an end-to-end database deployment pipeline.

Get your WinOps tickets now!

Lesson’s from 12 Months on Linux | Peter Mounce

Talk Description

Peter gave one of our highest rated talks at Winops 2015 talking about his experiences in implementing DevOps on Windows at Since then he’s moved to the Linux dark side and spent a year building CD platforms for Improbable, who help you build worlds via SpatialOS world simulation platform. In this session Peter will share the lessons he’s learnt from 12 months of living in a Linux oriented world, and how you can use this lessons to make yourself a better DevOps engineer.

Speaker Bio

Peter is a Build & Release Engineer at Improbable. Generalist engineer. Capable on a wide range of fronts – product delivery, continuous delivery, operating in production, leading other engineers, monitoring, logging, test automation, build & deploy automation, systems engineering.

Defies being pigeonholed.

Why Data DevOps? How to make it work | Simon Sabin

Talk Description

DevOps for the Data platform is often seen as the ugly sister in the room and left until last. We’ve been doing continuous integration of databases for 20 years and want you to have the confidence to do it yourselves.

In this session we will look at

  • the reasons Data DevOps is seen as hard
  • the options for managing change to your data platform
  • responsibilities involved site for deciding who and where data DevOps is
  • the common failings of trying to data DevOps
  • overcoming hurdles such as reluctant DBAs and developers not wanting responsibility

At the end of the session you should have ideas as to how you can make data a first class citizen in your DevOps process.

Speaker Bio

Simon is focused on driving DevOps into the Data Platform

He founded with the view of enabling companies to make the most of the data they have and drive the DevOps message.

He has worked with data for all his career and with companies across all industry sectors including online retail, insurance, finance, motor sport.

He works with companies to help them:

  • Improve their data development practices including implementation of devops, agile methodologies and continuous integration/delivery.
  • Understand and define a cloud data platform strategy.
  • Optimise their data platform, including performance, scalability, security and certification.

Education of people is at the heart of what Simon and his company stand for. It is epitomised by SQLBits, which Simon founded in 2007. It’s the largest SQL Server conference outside of Europe and many view as the best in the world, always maintaining a free element and ensuring education for everyone.

Practical DSC in Azure | Ed Elliott

Talk Description

Powershell DSC is the future of configuration management on Windows but it can be very frustrating when it fails, especially in Azure.

In this session we will explore how to deploy configurations to windows servers using Azure Automation and DSC.

We will go over the concepts involved and have a walk through of getting a DSC configuration to apply to a set of virtual machines. We will take a demo configuration with multiple dependencies and deploy that to a Windows Virtual Machine in Azure – we will examine what happens at each step and show you how to troubleshoot it if and when your deployment fails.

Speaker Bio

Ed has worked with SQL Server for 10 years and is a SQL developer who uses his skills gained as a DBA, Developer and Support Engineer to build continuous integration and continuous delivery processes.

Ed is passionate about getting SQL databases under source control, under test and deploy-able whether they want it or not.

Ed is always happy to talk development processes and databases any time (except tea time)

Testing SQL Server with tSQLt and VSTS | Alex Yates

Talk Description

So you’ve put your databases in source control and you’re figuring out how to deploy them with VSTS or Octopus Deploy etc. That’s great, but DevOps is about more than just the continuous delivery of software updates. If your new code is broken all you’ve managed to do is ship bugs to your users more quickly than before.

When writing applications we use test frameworks like xUnit or JUnit to create unit tests that can be run on a developers machine or as part of a CI process. That helps us to catch regressions. We should be applying the same diligence to our stored procedures and functions to help us to spot when we accidentally break the database too.

In this session I’ll use tSQLt to create a suite of automated tests and I’ll run them as part of a VSTS build. I’ll share all my scripts on GitHub so you can recreate my demo afterwards on your own machine.

Speaker Bio

Alex is a Microsoft Data Platform MVP with a passion for DevOps.

Alex has been helping data professionals apply DevOps principles to relational database development and deployment since 2010. He’s most proud of helping Skyscanner develop the ability to deploy 95 times a day. Originally for Redgate, later for DLM Consultants, Alex has worked with clients on every continent except Antarctica – so he’s keen to meet anyone who researches penguins.

A keen community member, he co-organises the London Continuous Delivery meetup and SQL Relay. He blogs at, speaks wherever they’ll let him and manages the DLM Digest quarterly email: a report on the latest database DevOps news/tutorials.
He’s quite fond of nutella. And otters. (Not together.)

Deployment pipeline for databases (Azure SQL Database, SQL Server) | Eduardo Piairo

Talk Description

The database development should not be handled differently from application development. Concepts like source control, continuous integration and continuous delivery in order not only to improve the database deployment process but also to narrow down the gap between applications and databases.

In this session will explore the different ways how to set up a deployment pipeline for databases. The database can be an Azure SQL Database or a database hosted in a SQL Server, the same concepts should be applied to both.

I will explore the different challenges of the deployment pipeline steps: source control, continuous integration, continuous delivery, and how the decisions (migrations vs state approach for example) in each step influences the next steps.

The deployment pipeline can be built only for databases, or to include applications in the different steps (can even include infrastructure). I will explore the different/possible configurations of the deployment pipeline while articulating databases and applications.

Speaker Bio

Deployment pipeline craftsman always ready to learn new ways to implement Source Control, Continuous Integration and Continuous Delivery for applications, databases and infrastructure.

Operations engineer, DevOps prosecutor with automation, collaboration and communication as priorities. Database administrator with special interest in database changes and data modeling.

The deployment pipeline it’s my favorite cultural tool. My mission is to relieve the delivery pain inflicted by the agile process, in other words, try to achieve the balance between business and business materialization.

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