A few weeks ago, I assisted a team of developers that my friend had hired to work on a project—let’s call them Team Goldilocks (obviously not the real name of the team). Team Goldilocks had been struggling with deploying their software to production, encountering warnings, the app refusing to run, and experiencing problems with databases. Although I am not affiliated with Generation Bleu or the Gekkostate organization, I couldn’t help but feel a little responsible since I recommended the hosting provider they used.
Initially, my friend notified me that the team was having problems with their project. After discussions, we decided to have a call to address the issues directly with a representative from Team Goldilocks. Following a lengthy discussion and trial and error, it finally ran. I explained to the representative the problem, the fix, the reason why we implemented the fix, and provided him with the list of workarounds that he requested to keep as they were while we were experimenting with things. The problem was evident: they didn’t know how to properly deploy their software to production!
So here’s my suggestion for all developers: When you have time, please try to learn how to deploy your product to production! It doesn’t matter what your seniority level is; in the end, you will need to deploy your app to production anyway.
Learn how to deploy your stuff on your stack or use shared hosting and learn how to deploy on their platform. Understand the pros and cons of each solution you come up with. Trust me; it will increase your productivity, both when you need to discuss the deployment with your Infra and SRE team in your professional work, and when you are doing it all by yourself.
Team Goldilocks didn’t understand that there are certain standards when deploying to productions or certain reasons why they need to do certain things a certain way. All they thought was that it was because their stack wasn’t supported on the machine, or maybe it was a bug in their software, which is not true! Their tooling properly gave them warnings, but their code ran perfectly as expected! The developers are not wrong; they did a great job! It’s just that they may need to learn how to deploy so that they know where to check the problem and ask the right questions, haha.
I recommend that all developers learn how to deploy their products; you will eventually ship your code to prod anyway! Gaining experience in this will help you in the long run, especially when dealing with complex software that requires a whole department to deploy and maintain.