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Continuous Integration Pipelines with GitHub Actions for (React) Developers (incl screencast)


Should you don’t have expertise working with knowledgeable dev crew but, you in all probability don’t understand how collaboration amongst builders sometimes works. One of the crucial essential elements is the Git workflow.

A quite common workflow amongst skilled groups is Trunk-Based mostly Improvement. In a nutshell, it really works like this:

  1. You’re employed on a separate Git department and push it to GitHub.
  2. You create a Pull Request the place automated scripts examine your code and your teammates assessment it.
  3. You merge the Pull Request to the principle department as soon as it’s authorized.

We coated this workflow intimately in a previous article. So if something is unclear, I’d advocate studying it first (or take a look at my free course where you can learn and practice this workflow).

On this web page, we’ll deal with the automated scripts within the second step. That is known as the Steady Integration pipeline and sometimes runs instruments like a linter (e.g. ESLint), code formatter (e.g. Prettier), or assessments.

If that is all seems like Gibberish, no worries. Take a look at my free course where you can learn and practice this workflow.

Within the video under I stroll via the setup of a GitHub repository for a Subsequent.js app that I created in a previous blog post. You’ll find a abstract under the video. In a nutshell, you’ll be taught

  • Tips on how to arrange a Steady Integration pipeline with GitHub Actions to robotically run ESLint, Prettier, and assessments in every Pull Request.
  • Tips on how to stop code from being merged to the principle department if it doesn’t move the pipeline.
  • Tips on how to use pre-commit hooks to run checks even earlier than you’ll be able to create a commit.

The appliance is a part of the upcoming React Job Simulator the place you’ll be able to work on an present codebase utilizing this and different skilled workflows and instruments. Similar to you’d in an actual job.




Desk of Contents

  1. Continuous Integration with GitHub Actions
  2. Status Checks: Prevent merges of Pull Requests that don’t pass the CI pipeline
  3. Pre-commit hooks: validate your code before a commit



Steady Integration with GitHub Actions

In the previous article, we set up the GitHub repository to use branch protection. This manner we will implement branches can solely be merged to the principle department by way of a Pull Request that’s authorized by one other teammate.

The approval course of will be very beneficial. However particularly code evaluations are additionally time-consuming. You don’t wish to waste time complaining about particulars like code formatting. On prime of that, it’s not possible to check all of the code by hand to make sure that the remainder of the applying nonetheless works as anticipated.

As , we’ve got instruments to help us: TypeScript and ESLint to catch bugs, Prettier to format our code, and assessments to be sure that our app works.

With the assistance of a Steady Integration pipeline, we will run all these instruments inside our Pull Requests. This manner we lower the hassle spent on code evaluations and scale back the danger of introducing bugs. And that once more helps to merge Pull Requests continuously (which is the whole meaning of Continuous Integration by the way).

There are lots of instruments to construct CI pipelines. The best possibility for repositories on GitHub might be GitHub Actions. It’s as simple as making a file known as .github/workflows/foremost.yml in your repo.

For my mission, the file appears to be like like this:

title: CI

on:
  # runs on pushes to the principle department
  push:
    branches: [main]
  # additionally runs inside pull requests that concentrate on the principle department
  pull_request:
    branches: [main]

jobs:
  construct:
    # makes use of a Ubuntu Docker picture (like a digital machine)
    runs-on: ubuntu-latest

    steps:
      - makes use of: actions/checkout@v2
      - makes use of: actions/setup-node@v2
        with:
          node-version: "14"
          cache: "npm"
      # set up dependencies
      - run: npm ci
      # run ESLint & Prettier
      - run: npm run lint
      - run: npm run prettier
      # confirm that there aren't any construct errors
      - run: npm run construct
      # run assessments with Cypress
      - title: Cypress run
        makes use of: cypress-io/github-action@v2
        with:
          begin: npm begin
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The next occurs each time a commit is pushed to the principle department or to a pull request that targets the principle department:

  • A Ubuntu machine is spun up, the code from the repo checked out, and Node.js put in.
  • ESLint and Prettier are run to examine for bugs and proper code format.
  • The mission is constructed to confirm that there aren’t any TypeScript and construct errors.
  • The Cypress assessments are run to confirm that the app behaves as anticipated.

In our Pull Request, we now have standing checks (one to be exact).

Pull Request - CI status check

In case one thing goes unsuitable and the CI pipeline fails we will examine the small print. You simply click on on the “Particulars” hyperlink on the very proper of the standing examine.

Right here is an instance the place I dedicated code that wasn’t formatted appropriately. This appears to be like similar to the output of a standard terminal.

CI details



Standing Checks: Stop merges of Pull Requests that don’t move the CI pipeline

At this level, we pressure everybody on the crew to make use of Pull Requests and we’ve got a CI pipeline that robotically checks our code. Sadly, a developer can nonetheless resolve to merge a PR though it didn’t move the CI pipeline. Wouldn’t or not it’s superior if we might stop that?

That’s the place our branch protection rules from the previous article are available once more. You’ll find an possibility “Require standing checks to move earlier than merging” that we didn’t choose earlier than. As soon as our CI pipeline has run no less than one time we will allow it and choose the required CI jobs.

You merely edit the present guidelines for the principle department, examine the choice, and choose the job from the workflow file (on this case “construct”).

require status checks in branch protection rules

Now the merge button inside a Pull Request is disabled each time the CI pipeline fails.

pull request - merge button disabled when ci fails



Pre-commit hooks: validate your code earlier than a commit

When you begin working with CI pipelines you understand that it takes some time to run them. It may be annoying to come back again to a Pull Request after a couple of minutes solely to understand that the CI failed due to a dumb ESLint error.

That is the place pre-commit hooks turn out to be useful. They can help you robotically run scripts once you create a commit. If one of many scripts fails the commit is stopped.

Because the objective is to commit continuously I wouldn’t advocate operating complicated duties in pre-commit hooks. For instance, operating a complete check suite on each commit rapidly will get annoying. Pre-commit hooks are greatest suited to quick scripts like npm run lint or npm run prettier. Particularly after they solely examine the staged information and never the entire repository.

The simplest option to arrange pre-commit hooks that solely run on staged information is by utilizing lint-staged.

npx mrm@2 lint-staged
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It will set up Husky beneath the hood and arrange some scripts to run earlier than a commit. You’ll find them within the lint-staged part in your package deal.json file.

That is the package deal.json file for my mission. I already tailored it to run on JavaScript and TypeScript information.

{
  "scripts": { ... },
  "dependencies": { ... },
  "devDependencies": { ... },
  "lint-staged": {
    "*.{js,jsx,ts,tsx}": "eslint --cache --fix",
    "*.{js,jsx,ts,tsx,css,md}": "prettier --write"
  }
} 
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Whenever you attempt to commit code that accommodates an ESLint error the pre-commit hook will complain now.

pre-commit hooks with husky prevent a commit

Notice that it’s simple to skip the pre-commit hooks by utilizing the git commit --no-verify possibility. So you’ll be able to examine our setup to kind validation in net apps:

  • The pre-commit hooks are the validation on the frontend. They provide fast suggestions however you’ll be able to simply hack them.
  • The CI pipeline is the backend validation: It takes a bit longer to understand that one thing went unsuitable however you’ll be able to’t merely work round them.

Bootcamp for Self-Taught React devs

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