Continuous Integration is a main part of DevOps. A DevOps has already turned out to be one of the most meaningful and useful techniques for the software development process, therefore, focus on CI tools has increased a lot as well. Basically, as the name suggests, CI is all about integration. Integration of the modification in a source repository and testing of the software. It aims to make the process of preparing a release both quick and easy. Mostly, a continuous Integration server or a hosted tool is used to implement CI. However, CI needs the self-testing code. Sometimes, Continuous Integration is also referred to as a feedback loop which basically helps the development experts to improve. CI even helps them to verify their code.CI mainly focuses on testing automation. It empowers the software developers to verify if the app is not broken every time new commits are incorporated in the key branch.
How does Continuous Integration work?
The software development teams mostly practice CI to merge the changes to the key branch. Their modifications are authenticated by performing the automated tests against the build. The teams would not have to really wait for the release day. They can easily merge all the modifications into the release branch even before the release. However, software development teams mostly need advanced Continuous Integration tools.
Top 5 Continuous Integration tools for DevOps
One of the favorite source code management tools, Git is perfect for CI. Being an open-source tool, it is already a top preference for software development teams. Git is one of those tools that can be used to manage both small and large projects without any hassle. It boosts the efficiency of the software development process. If you want to track changes in the source code, then Git should be your top preference. Also, it even empowers the development teams to work with each other on non-linear development. Since its inception in the year 2005, Git has been evolved impressively.
Reasons to choose Git
The biggest advantage of using Git is that it delivers a distributed development environment. Though, other tools offer a single central repository. Every software developer gets its own local repository. Every repository contains a history of commits. Therefore, the process of tracking history becomes a piece of cake with Git. The tools support non-linear development and it even allows the developers to create the backups. Git is preferred by most of the developers as it is scalable, and it even aids collaboration. If you are using Git for CI, then the process of branching is much more efficient and quicker. Git’s feature that supports branching workflow allows the software development teams to make an isolated environment for each modification to the codebase. Therefore, as a result, the master branch is not at all affected by the feature branches that are made for definite purposes.
Reasons for not using Git
Though there are tons of advantages of using Git, there are a couple of shortcomings as well. Sometimes the complexity of the workflow can be a concern for the software developers along with the complications related to the build/version number generation.
A Python-based CI tool, Buildbot is a cutting-edge automating tool. It is used to improve the process of building and testing the software. The tool also helps to enhance the release processes. It is used in various projects, to validate the code changes. As the tool offers efficiently distributed execution of the tasks. It is a cross-platform tool.
Reasons to choose Buildbot
BuildBot is one of the most preferred open-source tools. It allows the software development teams to easily maintain a single source repository. Also, with the help of this tool, the developers can manage the automating builds along with the deployment. The tool supports the testing process as well. One of the biggest advantages of using this tool is that it quickly reports hosts whenever there is any kernel crash.
Reasons for not using Buildbot
Though Buildbot is an efficient tool, however, it is not very reliable. The link between BuildBot slaves and master is a bit erratic. Also, at times, the build logs are lost spasmodically without any known reasons. And, there are a couple of performance issues as well. But overall it is a superb CI tool for DevOps.
Most often, Jenkins is regarded as the best open-source tool. The tool is perfect for automating the projects. Jenkins offers a wide range of plugins. Therefore, the tool helps the software development teams to automate the jobs. Therefore, all the jobs that may be very time-consuming are completed in less time. Jenkins is used for developing projects and perform various tests for debugging.
Reasons to choose Jenkins
Jenkins is one of the most valuable tools for CI in DevOps. The tool is used extensively for bug detection. Also, it eases the process of code analysis. Jenkins is used for project deployment as well. Jenkins acts as a standalone Continuous Integration server. In fact, software developers can even mold it into a continuous delivery platform. So, for any of your software development projects, the tool can be used as a CI or a CD tool as well. It even contains an in-built package for MacOS, Linux and even Windows. The installation process of Jenkins is quite easy and convenient.
Reasons for not using Jenkins
Though Jenkins is free, the unpredictable cost of the server can be a concern. Sometimes Jenkins slows the deployment process and causes issues for the release manager. Lack of analytics and tracking can be an issue with Jenkins too; the test results usually show several bugs.
Buddy is an efficient continuous integration tool for web development teams, it specializes in continuous deployment. The tool is developed to reduce the entry threshold to DevOps. The tool uses the delivery pipelines to develop and test a product. Also, it eases the deployment of the software. The builds are run in different containers along with the cached dependencies. Also, Buddy supports a host of different languages and task managers. It even contains a specific roster of the Docker or the Kubernetes actions. Buddy can be integrated easily with Google, Azure, and AWS.
Reasons to choose Buddy
One of the biggest advantages of using Buddy is that the speed of deployments is extremely high. As the speed is centered on changesets, the process is very fast. Buddy is absolutely customer-focused and it is easy to use as well. Additionally, the tool offers commendable speed. It is one of the most preferred tools as it aids parallelism as well as the YAML configuration.
Reasons for not using Buddy
Buddy might make it a bit difficult to keep all the documentation updated. Also, the makers can work on improving the UI too. A few of the reasons to not use Buddy might be the fact that it has some serious competitors. Because of the speed and performance, developers might prefer Jenkins or Git over Buddy.
A multi-tier application model created by IBM, Urbancode deploy is used extensively for CI in DevOps. It paves the way for continuous integration and it even eases continuous delivery. Also, the tool is known for quick feedbacks as well as self-service. Software development teams can also roll back the apps if required. Some of the top features of Urbancode include the fact that it can offer versioning as well as the audit trails.
Reasons to choose Urbancode
DevOps consulting services to choose it is the clear visibility feature. It helps the software development teams to clearly see what is being deployed. Not just that, you are able to see the place where it is deployed along with the people who are doing it. The tool eases the process of integrating with the middleware projects. Also, it offers server virtualization.
Reasons for not using Urbancode
The speed of Urbancode might be a matter of concern for some. Also, some of the users have talked about the process of passing information. They would want the process to be smooth and quick. Passing the information between deployment steps needs to be simplified, rest it seems to be an impressive tool.
A continuous integration tool for DevOps, Bamboo was made by Atlassian. Bamboo enables software development teams to automatically build and integrate the product. Also, the tool is used to test and deploy the source code. It is available in two versions, both cloud and server. It is linked to Jira; therefore, the process of project management is simplified. And, the tool is even connected with HipChat. This, the tool makes team interactions easy.
Reasons to choose Bamboo
Bamboo is an advanced, free automation testing tool. It is connected to other tools like BitBucket and Jira. Bamboo even supports several different languages. Bamboo contains improved workflows. Additionally, the tool makes it easy to sync the workflow to stay on track always.
Reasons for not using Bamboo
The tool needs a specific machine, therefore Bamboo might need some processing power which is reliant on the agent that the developer is running. Overall, it is a very strong tool.
Listed above are a few of the continuous integration tools for DevOps. DevOps is becoming more and more popular as it is turning out to be quite useful. Therefore, the need of the DevOps related tools will be higher in the coming years. You can refer to the list above to select the best CI tool as per your needs.