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From Benson Margulies <bimargul...@gmail.com>
Subject preflight idea
Date Tue, 28 Sep 2010 00:43:36 GMT
In some 'day job' environments I've worked in, the infrastructure
included a 'pre-flight' automated build option. I think it would be
valuable to add this to the ASF infrastructure, at least for the Java
side of the Universe (where I see a relatively easy way to do it).

What's that?

A way to ask a build server to apply a patch and run a full build.

The most extreme version of this scheme is one in which a patch must
pass a pre-flight test before it is committed to source control.
That's not my proposal. Rather, I'm looking for a way to use shared
servers to run lengthy test suites before the commit.

Why would someone like to do this?

As soon as I commit to the trunk, other developers are prone to pull
down my changes and be inconvenienced if I made a mistake. On the
other hand, I've only got so much computer available for testing ASF
changes, so I'd like to be able to do more extensive testing on an ASF
hudson instance. Also, some things have to be qualified against
multiple JVMs. My personal macbook, for example, can't easily test
with 1.5, since Apple flushed the 1.5 JVM from SnowLeopard.

Could I do something like this with existing facilities?

Yes, I could. I could make a sandbox branch, and a hudson job to build
it. However, that does not scale so well to many other people doing
the same thing, and I personally find it inelegant.

What 'infra' would it take to make this fly?

The existing infrastructure is actually very close to this. Consider
the git mirrors at git.apache.org. If committers were permitted to
create branches on there, and if committers were permitted to use the
hudson web service API to create one-time jobs, and if the hudson git
plugin were installed, then any committer (or any committer filtered
by their PMC) could push a change to a git server and start a hudson
job to build it.

The purpose of this email is to measure interest / sympathy in this
idea. If everyone else things it's pointless, I'm not about to go on a
campaign to drum up support.

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