Why you should use Devver

For good reason, developers share concern over not only a well-tested application, but also a regularly tested application. If you are managing a group of developers and are responsible for the outcome, wouldn't you first find a solution to allow your developers to run the test suite whenever they want? If your team members are running tests whenever they want on your massive application it'll probably slow them down, so of course you'll implement a continuous integration server. But then you're left with the requirement that they checkin their code. That could be a painful situation if they checkin some feature breaking hack. Enter Devver.

I'm participating in the Devver beta. When I got my invitation I immediately starting testing out the RadiantCMS source. While the code base is relatively simple, Radiant has some great test coverage including Cucumber features.

Radiant is a bit of a strange bird when it comes to Rails apps since it has it's own Radiant::Initializer rather than a Rails::Initializer. Devver wasn't quite expecting this, but Dan, Ben, and Avdi were extremely quick to respond to my requests.

There's been a good deal of development around the problem of running a massive test suite for an application. There's CruiseControl or CruiseControl.rb, and Integrity or Inotegration, or RunCodeRun and plenty of others that I'm missing. It seems to me that the problem with those approaches is that you need to checkin your code. In some respects, it's too late to run your tests when you've already checked in the code.

Of course you can use things like ZenTest with autotest. And there's spork for speeding up your tests as well. But a massive test suite that takes a while to run is something you might like to avoid running locally. Offload that to a server! Run rake devver:spec or rake devver:test. It's a very simple process.

You could, of course use testjour if it's a viable option in your development environment, but Devver is still probably much simpler to setup.

Installation is simple.

  1. Download and install the Devver gem
  2. Download and install the Devver Rakefile
  3. Configure Devver to use your API key
  4. Declare your gem dependencies
  5. Run it!

I've not been compensated in any way by Devver. They've taken a great idea (run tests before a code checkin) and made it easy and fast; and I thought you should know about it.