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3 posts tagged with "reproducible builds"

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Package Management vs. Reproducible Builds... Or Complementary Approaches?

· 9 min read
Christopher McArthur
C++ DevOps Expert

Let's face it, in the land of C++ development, package management and reproducible builds can feel like oil and water. Package managers promise lightning-fast builds with pre-built libraries, while reproducible builds preach control and consistency by rebuilding everything. But here's the thing: they're not sworn enemies.

Think of it this way.

Let's start with the basic build system. Imagine you're spending hours compiling your code. You throw more cores at the problem, and the build time shrinks – but there's a limit. Eventually, adding more cores won't magically make it compile any faster. Now imagine you don't build at all. Poof! Your build time is divided by zero, because it's not happening at all, it's just not a factor anymore. The most reproducible builds are the ones you don't have to repeat endlessly. That's where package management comes in, saving you from endless build marathons. Yet there's even more benefits for reproducibility as well.

This post will explore how these two seemingly opposing forces can actually work together to create a streamlined and efficient development workflow. Despite being a new idea, there is evidence of this already being used along with potential new opportunities for future development in this space.

From Scratch to Scalable: Seamless CI for C++ Windows Build Infrastructure with Ansible and Terraform

· 10 min read
Christopher McArthur
C++ DevOps Expert

One of the biggest challenges in C++ is setting up CI from scratch and of that, the biggest pain point is the system administration which can be very disconnected from the development tools. In order to bridge this gap we can leverage Infrastructure as Code (IaC) targeting existing machines, locally in our network or in the cloud, is an excellent enhancement to ensure consistent reproducible builds. Having version controlled configuration management tied to the codebase is key, this will allow us to deterministically install all the tools required with confidence even in the far far future.

Let's walk through adding Ansible to handle configuring a Windows virtual machine. These ideas apply to Unix environments as well but we can tackle those in a future post. Once we've gained control over our build environments, we can tackle availability and scalability by introducing Terraform to help provision and initialize new Windows instances in Azure. This two prong solution enables both a path for migrating to the cloud and establishing a hybrid setup.

Revolutionizing C++ Development: A DevOps Odyssey

· 4 min read
Christopher McArthur
C++ DevOps Expert

In the ever-evolving landscape of C++ development, challenges abound, but the journey to overcome them has a powerful ally: DevOps. The annual ISO committee's survey paints a vivid picture of the hurdles faced by C++ developers, but within these challenges lie opportunities for transformation through DevOps principles and cutting-edge technologies like Artifact Management, Infrastructure as Code (IaC), and Platforms as a Service (PaaS).

Unveiling the Challenges

The 2023 ISOCPP Survey echoes the sentiments of C++ developers grappling with key issues:

  1. Managing libraries my application depends on: 83%
  2. Build times: 81%
  3. Setting up a continuous integration pipeline from scratch: 72%
  4. Managing CMake projects: 67% (MakeFiles MSBuild)
  5. Setting up a development environment from scratch: 67%