Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Developer tools

BalaBit has grown quite a lot in the last 9 years since it was founded, these days there are about 60 employees and more than 50% of that is working in the development field (give or take a couple, I've lost count some time ago). As we currently work on 4 products, support 5-6 CPU architectures and a host of different Operating Systems, automation in development is a must.

We try to automate everything and that means a lot. Some examples:
  • preparing the development workstation for development/testing work in 15 minutes for any of our products
  • building source code for tens of CPU/OS combinations by issuing a single command
  • creating bundles of intermediate components when generating setup packages
  • doing releases
  • test automation
  • and a host of other things
Some of these solutions are completely our own development, others are derived from public projects, and as BalaBit tries hard to be a good friend of Free, Libre and Open Source Software (FLOSS) we try to contribute back to projects that we use.

A couple of weeks ago, I published our modified version of dogtail, a test automation framework for AT-SPI based applications. We maintain our own dogtail in-house and since our patches were not accepted, we published our changes in a public git repository.

Earlier, one of our developers contributed to WAF to support building with Microsoft Visual C++, we've been using his work in two of our internal projects.

And this time, we published cccl a wrapper for MSVC to make it compatible with the gcc command line, in order to compile autoconf based projects under MSVC.

LinkAs you could guess, BalaBit is primarily a UNIX/Linux shop, but we need to support products aimed at Microsoft Windows, however with some heavylifting combining the best of both worlds is possible. And we've never been afraid of challenges. :)

Hopefully you can use some of these results, maybe even contribute back.

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