Tuesday, 31 March 2009

Continuous Integration - Moving beyond the build

So everyone (well I really hope everyone) is now using Continuous Integration of some form or other. However a lot of CI I have seen is purely build, or build and unit-test. This is really under utilising a potentially great resource.

These days developer time is expensive compared to processor cycles. So we need to maximise developer time spent on productive things. Automation can help us do this, and automation starts with CI.

So what can we do to make this a reality?

Firstly consider what tasks do you do repetitively that take up time? Deployments, Integration Tests, Acceptance Tests? What tasks would you do more often but they take too much time? Static Analysis, Performance Tests, Endurance Tests?

But, I hear you say, this takes too much time, we cannot spare that right now.

Well I disagree - the time that you spend now
will pay you back later.

In anything from a few minutes to a few hours you can set up a nightly build, analysis, test cycle could save a whole lot of trouble and which can be incrementally improved to make life easier.

I plan to write some blog posts on how to do this, just need to find the time.

No comments: