Blue Ocean vs CircleCI

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Blue Ocean vs CircleCI: What are the differences?

What is Blue Ocean? A reboot of the Jenkins CI/CD User Experience. Designed from the ground up for Jenkins Pipeline and compatible with Freestyle jobs, Blue Ocean reduces clutter and increases clarity for every member of your team.

What is CircleCI? Automate your development process quickly, safely, and at scale. Continuous integration and delivery platform helps software teams rapidly release code with confidence by automating the build, test, and deploy process. Offers a modern software development platform that lets teams ramp.

Blue Ocean and CircleCI can be primarily classified as "Continuous Integration" tools.

Some of the features offered by Blue Ocean are:

  • Sophisticated visualizations of CD pipelines, allowing for fast and intuitive comprehension of software pipeline status.
  • Pipeline editor (In Development) that makes automating CD pipelines approachable by guiding the user through an intuitive and visual process to create a pipeline.
  • Personalization of the Jenkins UI to suit the role-based needs of each member of the DevOps team.

On the other hand, CircleCI provides the following key features:

  • Language-Inclusive Support
  • Custom Environments
  • Flexible Resource Allocation

"Beautiful interface" is the top reason why over 4 developers like Blue Ocean, while over 218 developers mention "Github integration" as the leading cause for choosing CircleCI.

Blue Ocean is an open source tool with 2.49K GitHub stars and 435 GitHub forks. Here's a link to Blue Ocean's open source repository on GitHub.

Instacart, Lyft, and StackShare are some of the popular companies that use CircleCI, whereas Blue Ocean is used by CityLiv, Nexus National Security Network, and iCodeBetter. CircleCI has a broader approval, being mentioned in 943 company stacks & 388 developers stacks; compared to Blue Ocean, which is listed in 4 company stacks and 10 developer stacks.

Advice on Blue Ocean and CircleCI
Needs advice
CircleCICircleCIGitLab CIGitLab CI
Jenkins XJenkins X

We are a mid-size startup running Scala apps. Moving from Jenkins/EC2 to Spinnaker/EKS and looking for a tool to cover our CI/CD needs. Our code lives on GitHub, artifacts in nexus, images in ECR.

Drone is out, GitHub actions are being considered along with Circle CI and GitLab CI.

We primarily need:

  • Fast SBT builds (caching)
  • Low maintenance overhead (ideally serverless)
  • Everything as code
  • Ease of use
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Replies (3)
Glenn Gillen

I think I've tried most of the CI tools out there at some point. It took me a while to get around to Buildkite because at first I didn't see much point given it seemed like you had to run the agent yourself. Eventually it dawned on me why this approach was more ingenious than I realised:

Running my app in a production (or production-like) environment was already a solved problem, because everything was already in some form of "everything as code". Having a test environment where the only difference was adding the Buildkite agent was a trivial addition.

It means that dev/test/prod parity is simple to achieve and maintain. It's also proven to be much easier to support than trying to deal with the problems that come with trying to force an app to fit into the nuances and constraints that are imposed by the containers/runtime of a CI service. When you completely control all of the environment the tests are running in you define those constraints too. It's been a great balance between a managed service and the flexibility of running it yourself.

And while none of my needs have hit the scale of Shopify (I saw one of their engineers speak about it at a conference once, I can't find the video now though 😞) it's good to know I can scale out my worker nodes to hundreds of thousands of workers to reduce the time it takes for my tests to run.

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I would recommend you to consider the JFrog Platform that includes JFrog Pipelines - it will allow you to manage the full artifact life cycle for your sbt, docker and other technologies, and automate all of your CI and CD using cloud native declarative yaml pipelines. Will integrate smoothly with all your other toolset.

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Estu Fardani
GitLab CIGitLab CI

more configurable to setup ci/cd: * It can provide caching when build sbt, just add this section to yml file * Easy to use, many documentation

Weakness: * Need use gitlab as repository to bring more powerful configuration

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Needs advice
JenkinsJenkinsTravis CITravis CI

From a StackShare Community member: "Currently we use Travis CI and have optimized it as much as we can so our builds are fairly quick. Our boss is all about redundancy so we are looking for another solution to fall back on in case Travis goes down and/or jacks prices way up (they were recently acquired). Could someone recommend which CI we should go with and if they have time, an explanation of how they're different?"

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Replies (6)
Dustin Falgout
Senior Developer at Elegant Themes · | 13 upvotes · 434.6K views

We use CircleCI because of the better value it provides in its plans. I'm sure we could have used Travis just as easily but we found CircleCI's pricing to be more reasonable. In the two years since we signed up, the service has improved. CircleCI is always innovating and iterating on their platform. We have been very satisfied.

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Peter Thomas
Distinguished Engineer at Intuit · | 9 upvotes · 471.4K views
Travis CITravis CI

As the maintainer of the Karate DSL open-source project - I found Travis CI very easy to integrate into the GitHub workflow and it has been steady sailing for more than 2 years now ! It works well for Java / Apache Maven projects and we were able to configure it to use the latest Oracle JDK as per our needs. Thanks to the Travis CI team for this service to the open-source community !

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I use Google Cloud Build because it's my first foray into the CICD world(loving it so far), and I wanted to work with something GCP native to avoid giving permissions to other SaaS tools like CircleCI and Travis CI.

I really like it because it's free for the first 120 minutes, and it's one of the few CICD tools that enterprises are open to using since it's contained within GCP.

One of the unique things is that it has the Kaniko cache, which speeds up builds by creating intermediate layers within the docker image vs. pushing the full thing from the start. Helpful when you're installing just a few additional dependencies.

Feel free to checkout an example: Cloudbuild Example

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Travis CITravis CI

I use Travis CI because of various reasons - 1. Cloud based system so no dedicated server required, and you do not need to administrate it. 2. Easy YAML configuration. 3. Supports Major Programming Languages. 4. Support of build matrix 6. Supports AWS, Azure, Docker, Heroku, Google Cloud, Github Pages, PyPi and lot more. 7. Slack Notifications.

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Oded Arbel
GitLab CIGitLab CI

You are probably looking at another hosted solution: Jenkins is a good tool but it way too work intensive to be used as just a backup solution.

I have good experience with Circle-CI, Codeship, and Travis (as well as problematic experiences with all of them), but my go-to tool is Gitlab CI: simple, powerful and if you have problems with their limitations or pricing, you can always install runners somewhere and use Gitlab just for scheduling and management. Even if you don't host your git repository at Gitlab, you can have Gitlab pull changes automatically from wherever you repo lives.

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If you are considering Jenkins I would recommend at least checking out Buildkite. The agents are self-hosted (like Jenkins) but the interface is hosted for you. It meshes up some of the things I like about hosted services (pipeline definitions in YAML, managed interface and authentication) with things I like about Jenkins (local customizable agent images, secrets only on own instances, custom agent level scripts, sizing instances to your needs).

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Decisions about Blue Ocean and CircleCI
Vladyslav Holubiev
Sr. Directory of Technology at Shelf · | 3 upvotes · 30K views

We migrated all our CI/CD pipelines to CircleCI back in 2017 and are particularly happy about it since!

Our top loved feature is unlimited parallelism. We can run as many builds concurrently as we want.

We also use orbs, pipeline parameters, reusable commands, build cache, test insights.

For some of the heavier repos, we use a larger resource class and mount RAMdisk to a file system to speed up builds.

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Phillip Manwaring
Developer at Coach Align · | 6 upvotes · 27.2K views

The introduction of Orbs a few years ago has really streamlined CircleCI configuration files and made them really easy to work with. Haven't tried GitHub Actions and decided to go with what was familiar instead of trying something new. Tried to make AWS Codepipeline work a few years back on different projects and found it to be incredibly frustrating, lacking support for some of the most basic features and use cases.

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Kirill Mikhailov

Jenkins is a friend of mine. 😀

There are not much space for Jenkins competitors for now from my point of view. With declarative pipelines now in place, its super easy to maintain them and create new ones(altho I prefer scripted still). Self-hosted, free, huge community makes it the top choice so honestly for me it was an easy pick.

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My website is brand new and one of the few requirements of testings I had to implement was code coverage. Never though it was so hard to implement using a #docker container. Given my lack of experience, every attempt I tried on making a simple code coverage test using the 4 combinations of #TravisCI, #CircleCi with #Coveralls, #Codecov I failed. The main problem was I was generating the .coverage file within the docker container and couldn't access it with #TravisCi or #CircleCi, every attempt to solve this problem seems to be very hacky and this was not the kind of complexity I want to introduce to my newborn website. This problem was solved using a specific action for #GitHubActions, it was a 3 line solution I had to put in my github workflow file and I was able to access the .coverage file from my docker container and get the coverage report with #Codecov.

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Buddy is one of the most easy-to-use tools for CI I ever met. When I needed to set up the pipeline I was really impressed with how easy it is to create it with Buddy with only a few moments. It's literally like: 1. Add repo 2. Click - Click - Click 3. You're done and your app is on prod :D The top feature that I've found is a simple integration with different notification channels - not only Slack (which is the one by default), but Telegram and Discord. The support is also neat - guys respond pretty quickly on even a small issue.

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We were long time users of TravisCI, but switched to CircleCI because of the better user interface and pricing. Version 2.0 has had a couple of trips and hiccups; but overall we've been very happy with the continuous integration it provides. Continuous Integration is a must-have for building software, and CircleCI continues to surprise as they roll out ideas and features. It's leading the industry in terms of innovation and new ideas, and it's exciting to see what new things they keep rolling out.

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Jenkins is a pretty flexible, complete tool. Especially I love the possibility to configure jobs as a code with Jenkins pipelines.

CircleCI is well suited for small projects where the main task is to run continuous integration as quickly as possible. Travis CI is recommended primarily for open-source projects that need to be tested in different environments.

And for something a bit larger I prefer to use Jenkins because it is possible to make serious system configuration thereby different plugins. In Jenkins, I can change almost anything. But if you want to start the CI chain as soon as possible, Jenkins may not be the right choice.

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Pros of Blue Ocean
Pros of CircleCI
  • 7
    Beautiful interface
  • 224
    Github integration
  • 176
    Easy setup
  • 152
    Fast builds
  • 94
    Competitively priced
  • 74
    Slack integration
  • 54
    Docker support
  • 44
    Awesome UI
  • 33
    Great customer support
  • 18
    Ios support
  • 14
    Hipchat integration
  • 13
    SSH debug access
  • 11
    Free for Open Source
  • 5
    Bitbucket integration
  • 5
    Mobile support
  • 4
    Nodejs support
  • 4
    AWS CodeDeploy integration
  • 3
    Great support
  • 3
    Free for Github private repo
  • 3
    YAML configuration
  • 2
  • 2
    OSX support
  • 2
    Continuous Deployment
  • 2
    Simple, clean UI
  • 2
  • 1
  • 1
  • 1
    Helpful documentation
  • 1
  • 1
    Extremely configurable
  • 1
  • 1
    Android support
  • 1
    Fair pricing
  • 1
    All inclusive testing
  • 1
    Japanese in rspec comment appears OK
  • 1
    Build PR Branch Only
  • 1
    So circular
  • 1
    Easy setup, easy to understand, fast and reliable
  • 1
    Parallel builds for slow test suites
  • 1
    Easy setup. 2.0 is fast!
  • 1
  • 1
    Easy to deploy to private servers
  • 1
    Really easy to use
  • 0

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Cons of Blue Ocean
Cons of CircleCI
    Be the first to leave a con
    • 12
    • 6
      Scammy pricing structure
    • 0
      Aggressive Github permissions

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    - No public GitHub repository available -

    What is Blue Ocean?

    Designed from the ground up for Jenkins Pipeline and compatible with Freestyle jobs, Blue Ocean reduces clutter and increases clarity for every member of your team.

    What is CircleCI?

    Continuous integration and delivery platform helps software teams rapidly release code with confidence by automating the build, test, and deploy process. Offers a modern software development platform that lets teams ramp.

    Need advice about which tool to choose?Ask the StackShare community!

    What companies use Blue Ocean?
    What companies use CircleCI?
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    Blog Posts

    What are some alternatives to Blue Ocean and CircleCI?
    It is both an imperative and functional programming language. Its syntax and general usage overlaps that of the interpreted Rebol language.
    In a nutshell Jenkins CI is the leading open-source continuous integration server. Built with Java, it provides over 300 plugins to support building and testing virtually any project.
    Jenkins X
    Jenkins X is a CI/CD solution for modern cloud applications on Kubernetes
    Travis CI
    Free for open source projects, our CI environment provides multiple runtimes (e.g. Node.js or PHP versions), data stores and so on. Because of this, hosting your project on means you can effortlessly test your library or applications against multiple runtimes and data stores without even having all of them installed locally.
    GitHub Actions
    It makes it easy to automate all your software workflows, now with world-class CI/CD. Build, test, and deploy your code right from GitHub. Make code reviews, branch management, and issue triaging work the way you want.
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