[llvm-dev] RFC: Using GitHub Actions for CI testing on the release/* branches

John Byrd via llvm-dev llvm-dev at lists.llvm.org
Wed Dec 11 23:42:50 PST 2019

Please forgive the incorrect threading on this reply to Tom Stellard's RFC.

> I would like to start using GitHub Actions[1] for CI testing on the
> branches.  As far as I know we don't have any buildbots listening to the
> release branches, and I think GitHub Actions are a good way for us to
> quickly bring-up some CI jobs there.

Personally, I feel that Tom's proof of concept, is more important than we
seem to be giving him credit for.

As of this writing, the Github actions system permits all comers, six hours
of CPU time per build platform.  Due to this long CPU allotment, AFAIK,
Github is one of the few CIs in town that lets anyone build and smoke llvm
for free.

Consider the workflow of someone who has never worked on llvm before.  They
will probably fork the monorepo on Github, in order to fix bugs or add a
feature or such.  At the moment they do this, they get a built-in workflow
that will sanity-check their builds on several important targets.  Zero
braining involved.

Giving Joe Programmer a CI system that magically smoke tests llvm, out of
the box, after he forks the repo, is a compelling reason to make something
like Tom's system a standard part of llvm master.

Concerns might be raised that llvm is "preferring" one CI system over
another.  Some thoughts about that.  First, because the monorepo's on
Github, you'll end up going to github.com anyway to get your first pull.
Second, nothing about Github actions precludes supporting other CI systems
in the future.

Thanks for your kind consideration.


John Byrd
Gigantic Software
2321 E 4th Street
Suite C #429
Santa Ana, CA  92705-3862
T: (949) 892-3526 F: (206) 309-0850
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