What is ChatOps?
ChatOps, sometimes known as conversation-driven collaboration or conversation-driven DevOps, is the use of chat clients, chatbots and other real-time communication tools to facilitate software development and IT operations tasks. GitHub is typically credited with originating the term ChatOps.
How does ChatOps work?
In a ChatOps environment, the chat client serves as the primary channel for communication about ongoing work. Tools that software developers and operations managers already use are integrated into a collaborative communication environment to improve ticket tracking and automated incident response.
There are many ways to deploy a ChatOps environment. For example, a notification system sends an alert that an incident has occurred, and the chat client responds by using a plugin or custom script to execute a preprogrammed command.
There are three main categories of tools for deploying a ChatOps working environment:
- notification systems, offered by vendors such as PagerDuty and Splunk On-Call;
- chatbots, such as AWS Chatbot and Hubot; and
- chatroom integration tools, such as Slack and Mattermost.
Automating repetitive tasks can reduce human error, and the collaborative nature of a ChatOps environment provides instant visibility and documentation. By supplying a real-time historical log of activities in an IT environment, the ChatOps approach also supports regulatory compliance and security efforts.