I am the DevOps engineer and a software engineer in a team where months back, the developers moved from having a central Oracle DB to having the DB on a CentOS VM on their individual laptops. The move from a central DB was to reduce dependency on the DBAs and also to eliminate issues that stemmed from inconsistent data.
The plan for sharing and ensuring synchronization of the Database with everyone on the team was that each person will share change scripts with everyone. The problem is that we use Skype for communication (we just setup slack but are yet to start using it fully), and although people sometimes post the text of DB change scripts, it could be missed by some. The other problem is that some developers miss posting the changes. Further, new releases are deployed in Production without being deployed on the Test and Demo environments.
This has posed a serious challenge for us, especially myself who of recent, became responsible for ensuring that our Demo deployments were in sync with the Production deployments. Most of the synchronization issues border on the lack of sync of the Database due to missing change scripts or missing DB objects. Oracle is our DB of preference.
A typical deployment in the Demo environment is a very painful process that involves testing an application and as issues occur due to missing DB table columns, functions, stored procs, we have to look for the missing DB objects, apply them to the DB and then continue until all issues are resolved.
How can I solve this problem to ensure smooth, painless and less time-consuming deployments? Can migrating our applications to Docker help with the DB synchronization issues and the associated lack of discipline of the developers? What process can we put into place to improve in this area?