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Continuous integration and delivery for app development and deployment

Continuous integration and delivery for app development and deployment

With IBM Cloud and other open source tools, you can set up continuous integration and delivery (CI/CD), version control, tool chains, and more to help automate app development and deployment.

Continuous integration (CI) can help you detect errors early, ensure early system integration, and improve collaboration in your development process. Continuous delivery (CD) is a practice by which you build and deploy your software so that it can be released into production at any time. By automating your continuous integration and delivery processes through setting up CI/CD pipelines, you can achieve repeatability in code releases and greater predictability in delivery schedules.

Adopt a DevOps approach by using IBM® Continuous Delivery Pipeline for IBM Cloud®, which includes open toolchains that automate the building and deployment of containerized apps.

Before you begin

Before you begin, make sure that you have at least the following permissions in IBM Cloud IAM.

  • Editor platform access role and Writer service access role to the Kubernetes Service cluster. For more information, see User access permissions.
  • Viewer platform access role to the resource group of the cluster where you want to create the toolchain.
  • Editor platform access role to the Toolchain service (note that this service is separate than Continuous Delivery).

Creating a toolchain with Delivery Pipeline

Follow these steps to create a CI/CD pipeline with a toolchain. A toolchain is a set of tool integrations that support development, deployment, and operations tasks. When configuring the toolchain you can include and configure a Delivery Pipeline that is automatically created and triggered after the toolchain is created.

  1. From the Red Hat OpenShift clusters console, select the cluster for which you want to set up a continuous delivery pipeline.
  2. Select the DevOps tab.
  3. Click Create a toolchain.
  4. Review the available toolchains. IBM provides pre-defined toolchains that you can use to deploy, test, and monitor Kubernetes-native apps or Helm charts. You can expand each toolchain to find an overview of the tools that are set up for you and to find the scripts in GitHub that are used to configure the toolchain in your cluster. If you know what tools you want to use, you can create your own toolchain.
  5. Select the toolchain that you want to use and click Create.
  6. Follow the directions in the console to configure your toolchain. Make sure to include the name of your cluster in your toolchain name so that you can easily find the toolchain that is associated with your cluster later. For more information, see Creating toolchains.
  7. Select Delivery Pipeline to review the stages of your continuous integration and continuous delivery pipeline. After you create your toolchain, your pipeline is automatically kicked off and runs through the stages that you configured. Make sure that your stages run successfully and correct any errors.
  8. Modify your toolchain. You can add more tools to your toolchain or change the stages of your delivery pipeline.
    1. From the Red Hat OpenShift clusters console, select the cluster for which you want to set up a continuous delivery pipeline.
    2. Select the DevOps tab.
    3. Select the toolchain that you want to modify.

Other resources for automating your pipeline

Check out the following integrations and tools that you can use to automate your CI/CD pipeline.

You can use Codeship for the continuous integration and delivery of containers.
Grafeas is an open source CI/CD service that provides a common way for how to retrieve, store, and exchange metadata during the software supply chain process. For example, if you integrate Grafeas into your app build process, Grafeas can store information about the initiator of the build request, vulnerability scan results, and quality assurance sign-off so that you can make an informed decision if an app can be deployed to production. You can use this metadata in audits or to prove compliance for your software supply chain.
IBM® Continuous Delivery Pipeline for IBM Cloud®
With your app configuration files organized in a source control management system such as Git, you can build your pipeline to test and deploy code to different environments, such as test and prod. IBM Cloud® Continuous Delivery allows you to automate your app builds and container deployments to Kubernetes clusters by using a toolchain. You can also check out this tutorial on Continuous Deployment to Kubernetes.
Razee is an open-source project that automates and manages the deployment of Kubernetes resources across clusters, environments, and cloud providers, and helps you to visualize deployment information for your resources so that you can monitor the rollout process and find deployment issues more quickly. For more information about Razee and how to set up Razee in your cluster to automate your deployment process, see the Razee documentation.
Use the Kubernetes project Kustomize to package your apps by both standardizing and customizing your deployments across multiple environments. Kustomize helps you write, customize, and reuse your Kubernetes resource YAML configurations. To get started, see Packaging apps for reuse in multiple environments with Kustomize.
With operators, you can manage the lifecycle of the apps in your cluster, including third-party software and services that you integrate into your cluster from the OperatorHub. You can consistently install, update, and monitor system components by using operators or by making operators available to developers that work in specific projects or across projects. To set up operators, see Using Operators in clusters.