Introducing the CloudBees DevOptics Visual Editor

Written by: Karan Malhi
4 min read
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Last month, we launched CloudBees DevOptics Deliver, a new solution which aggregates data from jobs and pipelines to connect your teams, applications and existing tools through Value Streams. In this blog, we will discuss how you can quickly map your delivery process as Value Streams using the simple yet powerful Visual Editor. If Value Streams are an unfamiliar concept to you in, take a read of this blog for an introduction.

Value Streams in the Context of Continuous Delivery

Many teams contribute value into a final business deliverable. Ideas, code, tests, security scans, deployments are examples of such value. Given that Jenkins processes a lot of this value, this translates to hundreds of Jenkins jobs and pipelines in Jenkins controllers across an organization.

CloudBees DevOptics Deliver enables you to stitch these jobs together to visualize Value Streams. By doing so, the following information is surfaced:

  • The amount of value (stories and commits) flowing through the system at a given moment

  • Blockers in rapid delivery of that value

  • Potential areas for efficiency optimization

Value Stream mapping is not a one-shot exercise.

You start with what you know today of the system and map out the jobs in a Value Stream. You then do a deeper dive to discover more jobs and pipelines. Finally, you add them to your Value Stream. This is then repeated until you have fully mapped out the Value Stream.

Simplified Value Stream Creation with the Visual Editor

The new visual editor allows you to:

  • Edit in place

  • Evolve your Value Stream without losing visual context

  • Search your Jenkins jobs throughout your Jenkins infrastructure

  • Set relationships between jobs

  • Reduce the likelihood of manual errors

The whole experience is driven by drag and drop combined with drop targets, search and modal dialogs. The option to use the JSON editor remains for those that prefer that approach.

Creating a New Value Stream

To create a new Value Stream, click on "Create Value Stream" (Figure 1).

Figure 1 - Create a new Value Stream

Next, enter a name for the Value Stream and pick a job. We recommend that you start mapping the Value Stream from right to left.

Pick the job which deploys to production and start working your way to the left (Figure 2).

Figure 2 - Choose a name and a Jenkins job

Once done, you can now proceed to use the visual editor to add more jobs and phases (Figure 3).

Figure 3 - A single gate appears and now you are ready to add more

Now we can start adding more jobs (a.k.a gates). Hover your mouse over the gate and click on the + sign. Now drag your mouse to the left till you see a drop target (dashed circle). Drag the mouse closer to the drop target till it snaps in place (Figure 4).

Figure 4 - Select the handle and add a new gate

In the modal dialog (Figure 5):

  • Enter the name of the gate

  • Search and select the controller

  • Search and select the relevant job

  • Change the phase name

Figure 5 - Give it a name and choose the controller, job and phase name

Click Save. The new gate appears and feeds into the existing gate on the far right (Figure 6).

Figure 6 - The Value Stream now has a new gate in the Staging phase

Repeat the above steps until you have mapped out the Value Stream, and finally save your changes.

You can see just how easy it is to create and evolve a Value Stream definition with the visual editor. Here is the final result of repeating the above exercise. You now get a live Value Stream of your continuous delivery flow (Figure 7).

Figure 7 - A complete Value Stream

Take It for a Spin

Try out the visual editor and give us feedback. We believe that taking the time to create your Value Streams is a critical step in ensuring a successful DevOps transformation initiative. Reach out to us and we will enable you to test drive this powerful solution.

Karan Malhi
Product Manager, CloudBees DevOptics

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