What is CI/CD?

CI or Continuous Integration is the practice of automating the integration of code adjustments from more than one builders into a single codebase. It is a software program development practice where the developers commit their work often into the central code repository (Github or Stash). Then there are computerized equipment that construct the newly committed code and do a code review, and many others as required upon integration.

The key dreams of Continuous Integration are to discover and address bugs quicker, make the procedure of integrating code across a group of builders easier, enhance software pleasant and decrease the time it takes to release new feature updates. Some famous CI tools are Jenkins, TeamCity, and Bamboo.

Why CI?
There should be scenarios when builders in a team, work in isolation for an extended length of time and only merge their modifications to the grasp branch as soon as their work was once completed. This now not only makes the merging of code very difficult, inclined to conflicts, and time-consuming however also results in bugs amassing for a long time which are solely recognized in later levels of development. These factors make it tougher to deliver updates to clients quickly.

With Continuous Integration, builders frequently commit to a shared common repository the usage of a version manage machine such as Git. A non-stop integration pipeline can robotically run builds, save the artifacts, run unit assessments and even habits code reviews using equipment like Sonar. We can configure the CI pipeline to be brought on every time there is a commit/merge in the codebase.

How CI Works?
Below is a pictorial illustration of a CI pipeline- the workflow from builders checking in their code to its automatic build, test, and closing notification of the construct status.

Once the developer commits their code to a version manipulate gadget like Git, it triggers the CI pipeline which fetches the changes and runs automated construct and unit tests. Based on the popularity of the step, the server then notifies the concerned developer whether or not the integration of the new code to the present code base was once a success or a failure.

This helps in finding and addressing the bugs a great deal quickly, makes the team extra productive by means of freeing the developers from manual tasks, and helps groups deliver updates to their clients more frequently. It has been observed that integrating the whole improvement cycle can minimize the developer’s time involved by means of ~25 – 30%.

CD or Continuous Delivery
CD or Continuous Delivery is carried out after Continuous Integration to make sure that we can launch new modifications to our customers shortly in an error-free way. This consists of walking integration and regression exams in the staging vicinity (similar to the manufacturing environment) so that the last release is not damaged in production. It ensures to automate the launch process so that we have a release-ready product at all times and we can set up our application at any factor in time.

Continuous Delivery automates the entire software program release process. The final choice to install to a live production environment can be precipitated by way of the developer/project lead as required. Some popular CD tools are AWS CodeDeploy, Jenkins, and GitLab.

Why CD?
Continuous shipping helps builders check their code in a production-similar environment, consequently preventing any last moment or post-production surprises. These checks may additionally consist of UI testing, load testing, integration testing, etc. It helps builders find out and unravel bugs preemptively.

By automating the software release process, CD contributes to low-risk releases, decrease costs, better software quality, accelerated productivity levels, and most importantly, it helps us deliver updates to clients quicker and extra frequently. If Continuous Delivery is implemented properly, we will constantly have a deployment-ready code that has surpassed thru a standardized check process.

How CI and CD work together?
The below image describes how Continuous Integration combined with Continuous Delivery helps quicken the software transport procedure with decrease risks and improved quality.

CI / CD workflow

We have seen how Continuous Integration automates the process of building, testing, and packaging the source code as quickly as it is dedicated to the code repository through the developers. Once the CI step is completed, the code is deployed to the staging surroundings where it undergoes similarly computerized checking out (like Acceptance testing, Regression testing, etc.). Finally, it is deployed to the manufacturing environment for the closing launch of the product.

If the deployment to production is a guide step, the process is called Continuous Delivery whereas if the technique of deployment to the manufacturing environment is automated, it is referred to as Continuous Deployment.

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