Microsoft-owned GitHub has announced new abilities that brings support to developers who want to make their code available faster. New tools on the code hosting website are called continuous integration, continuous delivery, and continuous deployment. Collectively the suite of features are called CI/CD.
By leveraging these features, developers can automatically test and release code more quickly. Debugging is simpler thanks to live logs that show how an app is performing.
CI can help developers by automatically testing code one it is placed in a code base. Once the code has been tested, CD will automatically release it. Combined, the two tools give dev's means to send out new app updates automatically.
GitHub is talking these features up as a major step forward. The site is the world's leading host of open source projects and CI/CD allows developers more time to write code and spend less time testing and rolling it out.
“Since we introduced GitHub Actions last year, the response has been phenomenal, and developers have created thousands of inspired workflows,” says GitHub CEO Nat Friedman. “But we've also heard clear feedback from almost everyone: you want CI/CD! And that's what we're announcing today.”
CI/CD features are available to all users. GitHub says they work across platforms, including Windows, Linux, macOS, and in the cloud. Furthermore, the tools support any programming language.
In many ways, CI/CD features are an extension of GitHub's Actions feature. Launched late last year, Actions is a workflow automation tool on the site that allows developers to automatically trigger actions into their projects.
By leveraging Docker code containers, developers will be able to set a schedule of events. Projects can have event triggers ranging from an introduction of new code to testing channels that trigger Actions.
“GitHub Actions is the democratization of CI/CD and software automation. Developers can write workflows reacting to any GitHub platform event and reference open-source GitHub Actions — reusable pieces of code — to supercharge their software lifecycle the same way they are used to writing application code,” said Max Schoening, GitHub's senior director of Product Design.
“It truly is community-powered CI/CD with a pricing model that works for everyone.”