Jenkins vs Salt: What are the differences?
What is Jenkins? An extendable open source continuous integration server. 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.
What is Salt? Fast, scalable and flexible software for data center automation. Salt is a new approach to infrastructure management. Easy enough to get running in minutes, scalable enough to manage tens of thousands of servers, and fast enough to communicate with them in seconds Salt delivers a dynamic communication bus for infrastructures that can be used for orchestration, remote execution, configuration management and much more..
Jenkins belongs to "Continuous Integration" category of the tech stack, while Salt can be primarily classified under "Server Configuration and Automation".
Some of the features offered by Jenkins are:
- Easy installation
- Easy configuration
- Change set support
On the other hand, Salt provides the following key features:
- Remote execution is the core function of Salt. Running pre-defined or arbitrary commands on remote hosts.
- Salt modules are the core of remote execution. They provide functionality such as installing packages, restarting a service, running a remote command, transferring files, and infinitely more
- Building on the remote execution core is a robust and flexible configuration management framework. Execution happens on the minions allowing effortless, simultaneous configuration of tens of thousands of hosts.
"Hosted internally" is the primary reason why developers consider Jenkins over the competitors, whereas "Flexible" was stated as the key factor in picking Salt.
Jenkins and Salt are both open source tools. Jenkins with 13.3K GitHub stars and 5.48K forks on GitHub appears to be more popular than Salt with 10.1K GitHub stars and 4.59K GitHub forks.
According to the StackShare community, Jenkins has a broader approval, being mentioned in 1774 company stacks & 1526 developers stacks; compared to Salt, which is listed in 110 company stacks and 20 developer stacks.
What is Jenkins?
What is Salt?
Need advice about which tool to choose?Ask the StackShare community!
Sign up to add, upvote and see more prosMake informed product decisions
What are the cons of using Salt?
Sign up to add, upvote and see more consMake informed product decisions
Sign up to get full access to all the companiesMake informed product decisions
Sign up to get full access to all the tool integrationsMake informed product decisions
For automating deployment or system admin tasks, Shell/Perl are more than enough. Specially Perl one liners, that I use heavily, even to make changes in xml files. But quite often the need is to just check the state of system and run scripts without fear. Thats where I actually needed some scripting language with "state mechanism" associated with it. Salt provided me above similar kind of experience. I tested salt first on a small scenario. Installation of 60 RPMS on a machine. I was pleased that I could achieve that in around 25 lines of code using salt. And eventually I was also able to keep data and code separate. This was another plus point. henceforth I was able to use salt to deploy a large potion Datacenter (apps deployment). I am still working towards orchestration and finding it quite promising. The use of pure python whenever needed to deal with more complex scenario is awesome.
All of our pull requests are automatically tested using Jenkins' integration with GitHub, and we provision and deploy our servers using Jenkins' interface. This is integrated with HipChat, immediately notifying us if anything goes wrong with a deployment.
When it comes to provisioning tens to hundreds of servers, you need a tool that can handle the load, as well as being extremely customisable. Fortunately, Salt has held that gauntlet for us consistently through any kind of issue you can throw at it.
Jenkins is our go-to devops automation tool. We use it for automated test builds, all the way up to server updates and deploys. It really helps maintain our homegrown continuous-integration suite. It even does our blue/green deploys.
- Continuous Deploy
- Dev stage: autodeploy by trigger push request from 'develop' branch of Gitlab
- Staging and production stages: Build and rollback quicly with Ansistrano playbook
- Sending messages of job results to Chatwork.
Currently serves as the location that our QA team builds various automated testing jobs.
At one point we were using it for builds, but we ended up migrating away from them to Code Pipelines.
We use Jenkins to schedule our Browser and API Based regression and acceptance tests on a regular bases. We use additionally to Jenkins GitlabCI for unit and component testing.
We've built something using SaltStack and Debian Linux to help us deploy and administer at scale the servers we provide for our part- and fully-managed hosting customers.