Sunday, October 29, 2006

TFS Checkin Policy for CI

I just read Buck Hodges blog about a great idea! One that I wish I had thought of. Clark Sell created this custom policy for TFS that checks the CI process via a web service to interrogate the status of the most recent build attempt.  If it is red then you can not check in your code. I've got to have this!

My team is still trying to come to grips with moving our CI process to retrieve code from TFS instead of VSS.  Steve St. Jean, one of my former team members, talks a lot about some of the obstacles of moving from VSS to TFS that our team has hit, among other things, here.  One thing we have struggled with is knowing when CI is Red.  CCNet is great but it is so small in tray and sometimes (often times) gets over looked.  We've talked about creating a web page that would interrogate TFS and turn the whole background of the page what ever color indicates the status of the build.  We would put this on a huge monitor in the middle of the team room for all to see.

But would something like that stop a dev team from continuing their work and checking in their code?  More than likely not.  Enter said checkin policy. It seems to me the devs would get so ticked off about not being able to check in code that they would make sure everyone on the team would know they couldn't.  This might lead to faster build fixes.  On the other hand, how could you check in code that would fix the build??? hmm.. just override the polcy right..  OK, maybe my theory about the devs getting upset is not really that realistic. But you get the idea of how good this checkin policy could be.

I sure do!