Jenkins gets cloud native ambitions organised

The Jenkins community’s proposal for a Special Interest Group structure have barely reached draft phase but already spawned a place for cloud native enthusiasts to collaborate and recharged work on pluggable storage.

For users preferring to use the continuous integration project Jenkins deployed in one of the cloud providers or use cloud services in their operations, there is now a Cloud Native Special Interest Group (SIG) to advance developments. The work of the new group coincides with the resumption of discussions around pluggable storage, which date back to 2016.

First changes could be noticed in the core of the artifact storage, as described in Jenkins Enhancement Proposal (JEP) 202. The SIG also started moving on the issue of external logging and a new artifact manager for the plugin to keep artifacts and pipeline stashes in Amazon S3.

The JEP to establish Special Interest Groups, following the example set by the Kubernetes project for container orchestration, was presented in April 2018 by CloudBees’ R. Tyler Croy and is still in draft state. According to the JEP, the size of the Jenkins project has caused “contributor fatigue” and led to unproductive discussions in specialist areas, which the new structure should tackle.

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SIGs are meant as a way to accommodate the needs of the grown community and formalize nascent ad hoc groups, so that it is easier for new contributors to join and see progress in areas important to them. To make sure there’s a certain amount of efficiency and transparency in the groups, the plan is for them to have to meet regularly, keep meeting notes and announce their agendas beforehand.

They also have to report in the Governance Meetings, record their own meetings in either written or video format, archive conversations from mailing lists and chat channels as well as ensure related work happens in one of the project’s GitHub repositories with code and tests owned and supported by the SIG.

A rough grouping by focus areas already existed before the JEP, as there already have been groups for the Jenkins infrastructure, long term support releases and the people participating in Googles’ Summer of Code (GSoC) program, which is supposed to get students into open source development. It’s no surprise that this structure is represented by the first SIGs created by following the JEP draft, since besides cloud native, there are also special interest groups for the Platform and GSoC now.

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