Bleacher Report’s Continuous Integration & Delivery Methodology: Creating an Integration Testing Server

Posted by Bill McGee in Guest Blog Posts

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This is the second of a three part series highlighting Bleacher Report’s continuous integration and delivery methodology by Felix Rodriguez.  

Last week we discussed how to continuously deliver the latest version of your application to a staging server using Elastic Beanstalk. This week we will be discussing how Bleacher Report continuously runs integration tests immediately after the new version of our app has been deployed. When our deploy is complete, we use a gem called Slackr to post a message in our #deploys chat room. This is simple enough and just about any chat software can do this. We chose to use Slack because of the built-in integration functionality. We created an outgoing webhook that submits any posts to our #deploys channel as a post to our Cukebot server. The Chukebot server searches the text, checks for a "completed a deploy" message, then parses the message as a Json object that includes the deploy_id, user, repo, environment, branch, and Github hash.

class Parser
  ##################################################
  ## Sample Input:
  # OGUXYCDI: Dan has completed a deploy of nikse/master-15551-the-web-frontpage-redux to stag_br5. Github Hash is 96dd307. Took 5 mins and 25 secs
  ##################################################
  def self.slack(params)
    text = (params["text"])
    params["deploy_id"] = text.match(/^(.*):/)[1]
    params["branch"] = text.match(/of\s(.*)\sto/)[1]
    params["repo"] = text.match(/to.*_(.*?)\d\./)[1]
    params["cluster"] = text.match(/to(.*?)_.*\d\./)[1]
    params["env"] = text.match(/to\s.*_.*?(\d)\./)[1]
    params["suite"] = set_suite(params["repo"]) 
    params["hash"] = text.match(/is\s(.*?)\./)[1]
    puts params.inspect
    return params
  end
end

Once parsed, we have all the information we need to submit and initiate a test suite run. A test suite and its contained tests are then recorded into our postgresql database.

Here is an example of what this suite would look like:

{
  id: 113,
  suite: "sanity",
  deploy_id: "FJBETJTY",
  status: "running",
  branch: "master",
  repo: "br",
  env: "4",
  all_passed: null,
  cluster: " stag",
  failure_log: null,
  last_hash: "0de4790"
}

Each test for that suite is stored in relation to the suite like so:

{
  id: 1151,
  name: "Live Blog - Has no 500s",
  url: "http://www.saucelabs.com/tests/20b9a64d66ad4f00b21bcab574783d73",
  session_id: "20b9a64d66ad4f00b21bcab574783d73",
  passed: true,
  suite_id: 113
},
{
  id: 1152,
  name: "Writer HQ - All Article Types Shown",
  url: "http://www.saucelabs.com/tests/4edbe941fdd8461ab6d6332ab8618208",
  session_id: "4edbe941fdd8461ab6d6332ab8618208",
  passed: true,
  suite_id: 113
}

This allows us to keep a record over time of every single test that was run and to which suite and deploy it belongs. We can get as granular as the exact code change using the Github hash and later include screenshots of the run. We also have a couple of different endpoints we can check for failed tests in a suite only, tests that have passed only, or the last test suite to run on an environment. We wanted to record everything in order to analyze our test data and create even more integrations. This helps us automatically listen for those completed deploy messages we talked about earlier, as well as to have a way of tracking those tests runs later. After every test suite run we then post the permalink of the suite back into our #cukes chat room so that we have visibility across the company. Another added benefit is that it allowed us to build a front end for non tech savvy people to initiate a test suite run on any environment. Check it out for yourself; we just open sourced it.

Stay tuned next week for part two of this mini series! You can follow Felix on Twitter at .

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