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ThoughtWorks Releases Cruise: Continuous Integration and Release Management System

by Chris Sims on Jul 28, 2008 |

Continuous integration is an agile practice in which each code change committed is automatically built and tested, reducing the cost of bugs by catching many of them as soon as they are introduced. Today, ThoughtWorks released Cruise, extending continuous integration to application testing and deployment. Cruise runs on Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux, and includes support for .NET, Java, and Ruby.

Cruise was announced in April of this year, as a product of the CruiseControl Enterprise project, which was announced about a year prior. Cruise is a commercial product that can trace its roots back to CruiseControl, the open-source continuous integration tool, which had its 1.0 release back in 2001. When Jez Humble, Cruise product manager, initially announced the product in April, he said:

So why the name Cruise? It is important for us to acknowledge the debt that we owe to CruiseControl, both in terms of its spearheading of the practice of continuous integration and the fact that we have used parts of the code in our new product. We want people to see the name "Cruise", recognize that it's related to CruiseControl, and ask, "what's the difference?" We want people to choose CruiseControl or Cruise based on their needs, and see mutual benefit for both products in recognizing the existence of the other. We have linked to the CruiseControl site from our website, and will continue to do so.

A key feature of Cruise is the build and release pipeline. This concept was described in a paper by Dave Farley, 'The Deployment Pipeline (Extending the range of Continuous Integration)' in 2007. Cruise allows monitoring of changes to an application as they progress from initial check-in to functional testing, performance testing, user acceptance testing, staging, and release. The process of moving a build through these various stages is often manual and error-prone. Bringing this under automated control promises to reduce errors, speed deployment time, and increase visibility into the process.

ThoughtWorks is offering a free 30-day trial of Cruise. The product remains free for teams requiring two or fewer software agents. Additionally, Cruise will be available at reduced or no cost for most open source projects, academic institutions and non-profit organizations.

ThoughtWorks provided the following tables summarizing features and pricing:

Feature Benefit
Pipelines Watch the application progress from "commit" through functional testing, performance testing, and User Acceptance Test to staging and even production.
Central artifact repository Keeps the application's binaries, test data and log files in a central location so that team members can get information and metrics in a snap.
LDAP and ActiveDirectory integration Get end-to-end security. Agent-server communication is secured using SSL and public key infrastructure, with all agents requiring approval to join the grid.
Zero-configuration build grid Simply install Cruise agents, and they will update themselves automatically, fetch their configuration and any source code they need, and start building.
Parallelization Split long builds into separate units of work and Cruise will run them simultaneously on multiple agents to bring your build time down.
Multi-platform testing Create stages in a pipeline to test an application on multiple combinations of hardware and software. Cruise runs all build plans within a specified stage simultaneously.
Scalable dashboard Get all information you need at a glance, whether you're a tester working on a single development stream, a program manager monitoring many projects or an operations manager in charge of hundreds of machines.

Annual Subscription Pricing

Edition --> Free Team Professional Premium
#Agents 2 6 15 35
Support Forums Email Email Email
(Dev Team)
Pricing $0 $1,800 $3,900 $6,500

Perpetual Licenses Pricing

Edition --> Free Team Professional Premium
#Agents 2 6 15 35
Support Forums Email* Email* Email*
(Dev Team)
Pricing $0 $2,900 $5,900 $10,900

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