Quick can you name a company that is 15 years old, never took a dime of venture money, has over 250 employees, over 10,000 customers and was widely profitable from day one? Until last week me neither. That was when I was briefed by Dhruv Gupta, Director, Product Marketing and Bob Dever, Director, Corporate Marketing for Perforce.
Perforce is a DevOps powerhouse. Take a look at the customer cloud to the right to get an idea of who some of the 10,000+ customers they have are. Perforce is all about version control. They do that and do it well. Whether you are talking about version control of your code, documents or analytics, Perforce has a solution for you.
When you think about it, you can see why Perforce is such a DevOps play. DevOps is all about continuous delivery or at least rapid release. How can you accelerate your releases without keeping track of the different versions? Without version control you quickly have a mess. Perforce has in some ways enabled continuous delivery and rapid iteration. They truly are the biggest, little secret in DevOps.
For many years Perforce was really the only choice in town for version control (there were others, but it became a leader in the space pretty quickly) but the rise of GIT, a distributed version control system (DVCS) gave some an alternative. But GIT lacked the enterprise features (read security and team management) that larger organizations needed. Its popularity among lone wolf and smaller dev teams though was unmistakable. It is easy.
Perforce has recognized this and has just released a new hybrid version of their solution. This hybrid version allows developers and dev team managers to use GIT and Perforce’s P4 in one hybrid version control platform. A best of both world solutions give DevOps teams the ability to move fast with GIT and have the security and enterprise functionality that P4 allows.
When you start thinking about DevOps Unicorns like Netflix for instance or Salesforce, the sheer magnitude of what Perforce is managing comes into clarity. In Salesforce for instance you have 3,000 Engineers making 4,000 – 9,000 Code Changes a day with 550,000 Tests / Hour. Keeping versions straight is not the kind of thing you do in a spread sheet.
It in a Continuous Delivery environment where Perforce really shines. They are making a big bet on enterprises adopting the Continuous Delivery model. However there are some fundamental questions to answer first. According to Perforce though you need to define what does Continuous Delivery mean to you? They conducted a survey:
According to Perforce they think of Continuous Delivery as this:
- Deliver working product to users as quickly as possible
- Every change (check-in) leads to a potential release
- Give business the option to release – what, when, to whom
- A change in process and culture
Most importantly though, Continuous Delivery is not just something Perforce thinks is crucial. Waterfall release models are obsolete and even Agile is just a way stop towards Continuous.
According to Perforce’s own survey they see Continous Delivery attaining critical mass:
Is this a case of when you are a hammer everything is a nail or are we at the dawn of the age of Continuous Delivery? Perforce is making a bet that it is. They are already very successful, any more and they may just lose their status as the biggest, little secret in DevOps.