Continuous Integration and Continuous Deployment (CI/CD) for Smart Contracts

The development workflow is a critical feature in the software development lifecycle that makes great developers exceptional. Failing to get the development workflow in order leads to a significant reduction in productivity,...

Continuous Integration and Continuous Deployment (CI/CD) for Smart Contracts

Introduction

The development workflow is a critical feature in the software development lifecycle that makes great developers exceptional. Failing to get the development workflow in order leads to a significant reduction in productivity, regardless of how good the developer is. Continuous Integration (CI) and Continuous Deployment (CD) are the two best practices that have gained traction over the last few years.

Continuous Integration: The automated testing of the codebase periodically to ensure that defects are identified as early as possible.

Continuous Deployment: Post the testing, the code changes are continuously pushed to the production system to ensure the accessibility of a particular version of code at all times.

Need for CI/CD in Blockchain Space

Blockchain harnesses the power of decentralization to combine various economic and computational concepts, providing an intermediaries-free transactional ecosystem. Blockchain is so far the best fraud-free way for efficient transactions between two parties. Blockchains are powered by smart contracts. Smart contracts are magical lines of code that digitally verify, facilitate, and ensure the execution of these transactions and block formation. When the pre-defined arbitrary terms are met, the smart contract carries out the specified operation, be it transaction or validation. The odd thing about smart contracts is they do not support traditional DevOps operations like Web 2.0, where a new code version can fix bugs or add features. Thus, software quality and reliability play a crucial role when it comes to smart contracts development.

The traditional web 2.0 services failed to meet the expectations of blockchain developers. To address the thin convoluted line between traditional software life cycle and blockchain development, Blockpulsar is changing the game with CI/CD for smart contracts. Blockpulsar has done extensive research based on ground theory techniques to extract the common web 2.0 practices that can be fruitful to smart contract developers. The reinvention of CI/CD from Web 2.0 to Web 3.0 for blockchain space will be a game-changing aspect.

Blockpulsar Enhances Smart Contract Development

A blockchain developer spends ~12hrs/week just deploying and testing smart contracts. When it comes to extensive testing, it takes a bit longer than this. This proves to be costly both in time and money, a lot of money. Blockpulsar revolutionizes the smart contract deployment and testing process through CI/CD. It allows for seamless integration of smart contracts with Github, making it easy for developers to manage key management and continuous deployment.

The core DevOps concepts in blockchain development do not deviate more from the traditional software development lifecycle. Blockpulsar allows blockchain developers who work in a local branch of their smart contracts and decentralized applications to apply code corrections or add new features, test those code modifications, and commit their work to a source control management system (Github). From Github, the smart contracts can be tested and versioned and then deployed on the blockchain network. The smart contract deployment is done on one or more system environments through release pipelines.

Continuous Integration of Smart Contracts

Blockpulsar, through continuous integration of smart contracts, allows the developers to frequently integrate changes into Github, from where the changes are validated by running builds and tests to capture the integration errors. Continuous integration of smart contracts ensures faster fixing of bugs. Furthermore, it drastically reduces the time required to validate and deploy smart contracts on blockchain networks. The integration involves a dedicated CI environment to monitor the smart contract repository and perform automated actions to check the changes in a shell environment. As a result, Blockpulsar turns out to be the best smart contract development framework that supports seamless key management and Continuous Integration.

Blockpulsar's CI for smart contracts places a tremendous emphasis on testing automation to check the changes made in smart contracts. This constantly checks for code breaks whenever new commits are integrated into Github. In Layman's terms, Blockpulsar runs automatically whenever a particular event (code change) occurs in the Github repository of your smart contracts. And it triggers customizable actions like testing in the blockchain development life cycle.

Continuous Deployment of Smart Contracts

The developers need to ensure proper deployment while deploying smart contracts into the test and main networks, respectively, requiring automated solutions. Depending on the deployment environment, the smart contracts need to be initialized in a certain order with certain parameters to possibly put to a certain state. To deploy a smart contract, the relevant libraries and dependent contracts must be deployed first. Performing these deployment dependencies manually is not only time-consuming, but the probability of error is high. Fortunately, Blockpulsar can be used to automate these deployment prerequisites reliably. After Continuous Integration of smart contracts, Blockpulsar proceeds with Continuous deployment, the final stage in the pipeline responsible for the automatic release of changes from the Github repository to the Blockchain networks.

Blockpulsar with Continuous Deployment speeds up the deployment of smart contracts by eliminating the need for human intervention. The changes in the smart contracts are tested and passed through the stages of production before it is deployed. Only the failure of test cases will stop the deployment of new changes. In all other cases, the changes are deployed seamlessly.

Conclusion

Blockpulsar becomes the cornerstone of a blockchain development workflow by enabling CI/CD for smart contracts. Blockpulsar helps smart contract engineers automate them, resulting in more time to focus on development rather than testing, analyzing and deploying. Blockpulsar, with its modern features (many more are coming), will empower the developers with confidence to break milestones, implement new smart contracts and ship/deploy them quickly.

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With the help of Blockpulsar experts, you can deploy a successful workflow solution faster. Our consultants use agile and waterfall project methodologies, as well as a variety of automation technologies, to ensure a flexible and user-friendly workflow solution.

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