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Why use continuous integration

Again and again I see myself in annoying long discussions about putting up a CI for projects or not. I guess many people already wrote about exactly the same thing, but i want to sum up all the pros and cons here for myself.

Pro:

  • The CI builds on a dedicated system
    • Not checked in files lead to a failing build
    • The build server usually is building and running its test on a system that is very similar to the production system. This can prevent you from very nasty bugs that appear while you are trying to depoly your software on a production machine
  • Statistics and history
    • One can see how stable a certain test is
    • Which developer causes the most trouble by not properbly checking in its code
  • Nightly stage
    • A customer or product owner can see the software evolving in almost real time

Con:

  • The CI server needs some hardware and someone to set everything up and keep the CI running

In my optinion a CI server is not only for teams. Even if the development team consists of a single person a CI gives you a lot of benefits as listed above.


Date published:
Date modified: 2010-07-12
Keywords: CI, Continuous Integration