My Adventures in Coding

July 31, 2009

TeamCity – Using Personal Builds to help improve cycle time

Filed under: TeamCity — Brian @ 1:35 pm
Tags: ,

So you are working on a large project, many developers committing regularly to the same code base, you run all the unit tests, commit and you break the build. Now everyone on your team is angry (As they should be!). How could this have happened when you ran all of the tests? The reason is that you did not update before running tests locally and committing. The problem is that constantly updating and building can waste a lot of time. Even if you do update, run all tests, then commit, there is still a chance another developer made a commit during that cycle. The solution: Team City Personal Builds.

Personal Builds

The great people at JetBrains have a feature in TeamCity that allows you to use your build server build agents for “Personal Builds”. More great news is that TeamCity plugins that make use of this interesting TeamCity feature are available for IDEs such as IntelliJ and Visual Studio.

So now when you use your IDE tool with the TeamCity plugin you would use the “Remote Run” option to make your commit. TeamCity will then spin up a personal build, apply your code changes to a fresh checkout of the repository, build, and run all unit tests. If your “Personal Build” passes, your code changes will be committed. Now, here is the great part, if it fails, your code changes will NOT be committed, and you will be notified of the failure.

This feature of TeamCity allows developers to get out of the update, run all tests, and commit cycle and offload some of that work to their TeamCity server.

IntelliJ Plugin Setup

  • File->Settings->Plugins
  • Click on the “Available” tab
  • In the search box enter “TeamCity” (The option JetBrians TeamCity Plugin should show up in the list)
  • Right click on the plugin and select “Download and install”
  • You should see a TeamCity option on your IntelliJ toolbar
  • Enter your TeamCity credentials, setup your notifications

So now, when you commit use TeamCity – > Remote Run rather than using the Version Control menu. You will be notified if your commit is accepted or rejected.

Visual Studio Plugin Setup

To download the Plugin, login to your TeamCity server, go to the “My Settings & Tools” page. You will find a download link for the plugin in the “TeamCity Tools” panel on the righthand side of the page.


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