CircleCI is a "continuous integration" (CI) cloud service. It is useful for Open SDG in a way that is typical of open-source projects: it "listens" for certain events in your GitHub repository, and then provides temporary virtual machines to perform various server-side tasks. Open SDG needs a CI tool to accomplish these things:
- Run each new proposed change through certain tests, to prevent regression bugs
- Build and deploy the platform to a "staging" environment whenever changes are made
- Build and deploy the platform to a "production" environment whenever a new release is made
- Although there are paid plans, the free tier is sufficient for Open SDG implementations
- Built-in integrations with Github repositories
- Requires the creation of SSH keys to communicate with version control (eg, GitHub)
CircleCI's tight integration with Github repositories makes it relatively simple to set up.
Using CircleCI involves putting a configuration file (
.circleci/config.yml) in your repository.