Jenkins

A open-source CI tool that builds pipelines for DevOps projects

Jenkins is an open-source Continuous Integration (CI) tool. It’s based on java, and it allows you to easily add modules to your product. Features such as pipeline building and build testing make it a very popular development tool. It currently has 300k+ downloads and 1,600 active plugins that can help with coding, resource management, and testing.

Jenkins is a server tool that typically requires a server container like Tomcat. Through it, you can catch the errors generated in early development and build stages and perform reporting and printing. 


Jenkins can take various stages of DevOps and integrate them into its build through the use of plugins. You can also integrate automation testing frameworks such as selenium, Pytest, and Robot, for detailed examination.

Who created Jenkins?

Sun Microsystems’ Kawaguchi was the chief engineer who built Jenkins. He realized that he had to continuously build and commit his code to the repository, even when the code had errors. To avoid that, he built an automation server in 2004 that could build and test his work and named it Hudson.

When Oracle acquired Sun Microsystem, they forked the project and named it Jenkins. For a time, both Hudson and Jenkins were used by developers. Sometime later, Oracle stopped maintaining Hudson and Jenkins gained the top position due to its remarkable features and the development community’s own interests.

Why is Jenkins such a Good CI/CD tool?

Automated CI tools have made profound changes in SDLC. Using them is more cost-effective and efficient than employing just traditional processes. After implementing one of these tools, build management, source code management, analysis, UI (User Interface), administration, and platform-specific tasks can all be done from a centralized place.

So what makes Jenkins so much better than other tools?

  • It’s easy to install, as you can deploy it through its web interface.

  • It continuously runs debugging and deployment tests for the base repository. If the test is successful, it automatically updates the production library and deploys the module. Otherwise, it will report to the developer. You can also use it to develop large-scale projects with ease.

  • It also has many automation features and plugins which can automatically add new code to the repository, build and test it, saving your time and allowing the developers to focus on the business logic instead of testing. This reduces project complexity, which in turn reduces project costs. This minimizes build time, and you can also easily understand the point of failure.

  • It’s open-source and free to use. It also has enormous community support for its extensive environment. The community releases updates and patches frequently.

  • You can easily integrate Jenkins into the cloud. It can be integrated with popular cloud platforms such as Amazon EC2, Google Cloud, VMWare vSphere, Digital Ocean, and more.

How does Jenkins work?

  • The engineer creates the code and submits it to his repository. You can edit the source file or create a new file for the project.

  • The Jenkins server does a continuous check to see if there are any changes in the code repository. Once it detects one, it pushes those specific changes into the server.

  • The Build server creates a new build for the project and starts testing it. If the build is successful, it goes through. Otherwise, logs, file details, and snapshots are sent to the concerned team and stakeholders.

  • Once the server confirms that the build is successful, the build goes through to the test server, where it’s subjected to the tests set by the testing team. A feedback loop runs for the system that continuously updates the logs regarding which tests are failing. The snapshots for failed tests are taken, and logs are again sent to the concerned teams.

  • Once the test server confines that the build is successful, it’s pushed onto the production server.

Jenkins continuously checks the user repository for newer updates. The system automatically iterates the whole process as soon as it detects a change. This process is also called a continuous delivery pipeline.

What is the Jenkins pipeline?

Jenkins pipelines are the set of plugins that organizations can use to improve their DevOps functionality. They allow developers to implement the continuous delivery pipeline. 

The concept is called pipeline as a code, and the Domain-specific language (DSL) is used to define the project. The code is written into Jenkinsfile, and it’s attached to the code repository. Declarative and scripted are the 2 ways companies define Jenkins pipelines for a particular project. 

Through the Jenkins pipeline, you can create forks, modules, and loops for your project. You can also use it to create an audit trail. It improves collaboration, helps to view a single point of failure, and improves code durability. 

What are the Top plugins for Jenkins which programmers
use every day?

Dashboard View

This plugin allows you to create a customized dashboard for your Jenkins program. Through this, you can decide the jobs you want to monitor, and track their status and completion.

Monitoring

This plugin allows you to analyze metrics such as CPU Time, memory, security issues, and bugs. It also captures log information, data dumps, and HTTP responses.

Kubernetes

Developers use this plugin for adding Kubernetes cluster features to their Jenkins build. It helps to scale the Jenkins agents through Kubernetes. It also adds an additional layer of automation to Jenkins and makes sure that the infrastructure defined by the developer is managed effectively.

Build Pipeline

This plugin allows you to check the job flow for that particular build. You can check the triggers and successors for a particular job or set up reporting for triggered jobs. It’s important for DevOps applications that require you to check on different elements of the job structure simultaneously.

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