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Everything You Need to Know About Jenkins Configuration and Installation

Everything You Need to Know About Jenkins Configuration and Installation

Must have heard about DevOps? Well, it is a methodology that we use to increase the development speed of an organization. What we do in DevOps is we try to automate all the manners of development and deployment of the product, which reduces the time of production, and then the delivery is also automated.

There are two parts of the DevOps. One is CI, continuous integration, and the other is CD, continuous delivery. Continuous integration is one major part of the DevOps methodology by which we automate different stages of production together. Right after the continuous integration part comes the continuous delivery part. In CD, the delivery process gets faster by implementing the DevOps techniques. There are different tools that we use to ensure the process of continuous integration and continuous delivery.

Jenkins, a Continuous Integration Tool

As we know how important continuous integration is for the seamless working of the organization, using a tool that is suitable for CI is as essential as CI itself. That is where Jenkins comes in. Jenkins is a java based tool that is open-source, and the Plug-ins are built for the continuous integration process. Jenkins makes the process of building and testing automatic, so it keeps working and that will make it easier for developers to integrate all the changes. The continuous delivery of the project is only possible when there is continuous integration.

Jenkins utilizes its plug-ins to automate different stages of the DevOps process to ensure continuous integration. The building, testing, packaging, deployment, and all other stages are included in this process.

Installation of Jenkins

As we know, Jenkins is a java based tool, so we need to have java installed in the system if we want to install Jenkins. A java with version 8 can work for Jenkins with JRE or JDK.

  • You will have to download the latest version of Jenkins from a reliable site, preferably the Jenkins official site.
  • After downloading it, you will have to run the .exe file that will start the installation process.
  • On the next window, select the destination folder for Jenkins installation.
  • Just click next after the folder selection, and it will start the installation.
  • After the installation, click on done. Jenkins is now installed in your system.

 There should be a long term support system (LTS) with the latest version. You can now host the local host at 8080 port and add some initialization parameters, and you will have to do it every time you need to run Jenkins. Here now, you are on the page to unlock Jenkins.

Now it will suggest you the most suitable available plugins right now. You will get all of its details in another session and you can even change it later. But for now, it will install the suggested plugins in your system so that Jenkins can have everything it needs to process. There are some essential things to understand when installing Jenkins.

  • Location

We can consider Jenkins as the database, and we do take care of our database, so the same way we will have to take care of Jenkins's home directory. As this directory has all the information about whatever you do in Jenkins, from a simple job to a complex automation job everything is there, and that defines the importance it has. It is a recommendation from experts to create a backup of everything this folder contains.

  • Installation of Dockers

Docker is an essential tool for Jenkins as it helps Jenkins to work well with its pipeline. If you do not have a docker installed, you will need a lot of other tools and agents to work well with the pipeline to ensure the continuous integration process. As we know, a docker container copies a complete process and pastes it at any other location that can be very helpful in the CI process.

  • Suggested Plugins

Plugins are the essential part of Jenkins as only these plugins make Jenkins what it is today. These plugins are flexible and fulfill almost all the needs of the continuous integration process. But there is something more important and that is to decide which plugins are for you as per your needs. This process of selections can be made easy by taking Jenkins training. It could either be online or in an institute.

It is because of these plugins why professionals prefer Jenkins over other tools as they can find the plugin of their choice and install it.

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Jenkins Configuration

We have installed Jenkins in our system, yes, but it is still not ready to use and build your projects on it. It will need some configuration to process. Although we can configure it according to each of the projects we will do on it, but there is some initial configuration that we need to do. It is not a hard job to configure Jenkins as the management screen is user-friendly. We will look into everything step by step to understand it better.

The Dashboard Configuration

If you want to manage Jenkins, you need to understand the dashboard screen of Jenkins. You can easily manage everything in Jenkins using this screen. In the management screen, you get to see content according to the plugins you have installed and you can access the dashboard screen anytime by just typing manage in the search bar on Jenkins. On this page, you can see multiple aspects of Jenkins that you can manage individually. We will be discussing some of the prominent ones on this page that concern us almost in every project we do.

  • Configure System

The configure system is the place where you can manage tools for a project. It includes email servers, security options, JDK, or any other tool. You can also manage the plugins here in this one, as Jenkins adds all the plugin details here.

  • Reload Configuration from a Disk

As we know, all the project details and system configurations are saved in the home directory of Jenkins as an XML file. These files will come handy when you need to migrate from an instance of Jenkins to another instance. All you need to do is to use reload configurations from the disc option and it will restore every necessary file at its place. Your home directory of Jenkins defines the speed of processing. It should not be overcrowded with files, otherwise, it slows down the process.

  • Manage Plugins

Now it comes to managing the plugins, the reason it has become the priority for the world. It provides an open-source environment, so you add any third-party plugin, anything that can make Jenkins perform better. On this page, you can access any of the plugins, install new ones, or remove the existing ones.

  • Load Statistics

With this feature, you can manage your statistics. It has all the data about all the builds that you have done or are currently running. It provides you with the idea if you need any extra capacity or the current one will be sufficient.

  • Manage Nodes

As we know that Jenkins is very good at handling multiple builds in parallel, it is now on us to configure how many builds we want it to run. You will need to configure nodes if you want to work with distributed builds.  

  • Prepare for Shutdown

It is a crucial thing to shut down Jenkins or its server as there could be a build running. Prepare for the shutdown is an option you can use if you want to shut it down. It stops any new builds from running if enabled.

Configuration of System Environment

It is an essential page that lets you configure the system. All the necessary tools of Jenkins are configured here. Many sections on this page are specified for different tools to configure them. Your newly installed plugins are also here for configuration. On this page, you can define some general parameters for the system. There is a shortcut to the home directory of Jenkins as well, so you can check ongoing builds within no time.

You will find a message board kind of thing on this page that you can use however you want. The most common purpose is to give out a message to all the users. There is a quiet period that is a useful thing when it comes to committing changes one by one and not in a grouped manner. Usually what Jenkins does is it commits as soon as it finds out about any changes made, but when we are using SCM tools such as CVS, we do not want Jenkins to commit as soon as there is a change. 

There we have all the basic installation and configuration settings of Jenkins anyone would need to know. Jenkins is an essential tool for the continuous integration process as it makes a pipeline of all the stages and keeps them running continuously. That was all from us, until next time. Thank you!

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