Archive for October, 2012

POTD: submit a patch to Jenkins, and let him test it for you

October 8th, 2012

Here’s my 2nd after-JavaOne “project of the day” Jenkins plugin. This has been in the back of my mind for quite some time, but it took this gentleman to grill me on this feature during JavaOne for me to finally put it together — so thank YOU for doing that. although I didn’t catch your name.

The plugin is called the “patch parameter” plugin. This plugin lets you submit a patch when scheduling a build, and that gets applied to the checked out source tree before a build would commence. Any failure to apply a patch will result in a build failure.

This plugin can be used for a “pre-tested commit” workflow. You can work on a change locally, have the diff tested on the server, then if you are satisfied, you can commit it. I can imagine this would be also an interesting building block for integration with code review tools.

I should also note that we have the Subversion Merge plugin for a different approach to a similar problem, and distributed VCS can generally do this better (for example I do one for Git in CloudBees Validated Merge plugin.)

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POTD: iOS device connector plugin (cont’d)

October 7th, 2012

Today, I wrapped up the project I started Friday and released iOS device connector plugin.

In addition to listing all iOS devices, this plugin lets you deploy IPA files from anywhere (in Jenkins build via a build step or outside via CLI) to any of the connected iOS devices.

There are still some loose-ends that I’d like to get some feedback on:

  • You should be able to select a device without electing a specific UDID, and I’m curious what kind of criteria people needs here. Do you need to be able to say “deploy my app on iPad2 with 16GB memory”, or is “deploy my app to an available iPad” suffice?
  • For this to be useful for automated test execution. I think we need to be able to launch the app (and I assume the tests embedded in the app itself will run and shuts itself down in the end?) How do people do it?
  • Don’t we need to inject the coordinates of the actual device the app was deployed to, so that your build can do more stuff with it?
  • What are other interesting operations to devices. File access? Screenshot?

Anyway, the plugin is already released. I hope you find it useful.

jenkins, potd

POTD: iOS device detection in Jenkins

October 5th, 2012

I was talking to my colleague Mark Prichard about mobile development with Jenkins, and I came up with this idea.

If you are doing iOS app testing with real devices, you need to tether the device with a computer so that you can push the app-to-be-tested to the device. In a local development environment, you’d naturally do this by hooking up a device to your laptop.

But in the CI environment, we can do better. Imagine if you have a Jenkins master connected to a dozen Mac minis, where each Mac mini is then connected to various iOS devices. There’s nothing stopping Jenkins from listing up all the devices connected to all the slaves. Then based on this information, Jenkins can lease devices to builds.

Say someone wants to run a test somewhere. Jenkins can find an unused device and push it, then inject the coordinate of that device to the build. Or how about the axis in a matrix project that allows you to say “I need this test to run with iPhone 3GS,4,5 and iPad 2,3″ then Jenkins will run 5 runs of the tests in parallel?

To that end, as a post-JavaOne fun project, I developed a plugin that lists up all the iOS devices connected to Jenkins.

And just to show that we can list up various properties of this device:

I should be able to combine this with something like fruitstrap so that you can deploy apps from anywhere to any device connected to your Jenkins build farm.

What do you think? Shouldn’t this be interesting? Any thoughts?

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