Building with workflows - Amazon CodeCatalyst

Building with workflows

Using CodeCatalyst workflows, you can build applications and other resources.

How do I build an application?

To build an application or resource in CodeCatalyst, you first create a workflow, and then specify a build action inside it.

A build action is a workflow building block that compiles your source code, runs unit tests, and produces artifacts that are ready to deploy.

You add a build action to your workflow using the CodeCatalyst console's visual editor or YAML editor.

The high-level steps to build an application or resource are as follows.

To build an application (high-level tasks)
  1. In CodeCatalyst, you add source code for an application you want to build. For more information, see Storing source code in repositories for a project in CodeCatalyst.

  2. In CodeCatalyst, you create a workflow. The workflow is where you define how to build, test, and deploy your application. For more information, see Getting started with workflows.

  3. (Optional) In the workflow, you add a trigger that indicates the events that will cause the workflow to start automatically. For more information, see Starting a workflow run automatically

  4. In the workflow, you add a build action that compiles and packages your application or resource source code. Optionally, you can also have the build action run unit tests, generate reports, and deploy your application if you don't want to use a test or deploy action for these purposes. For more on the test and deploy actions, see Adding the build action.

  5. (Optional) In the workflow, you add a test action and a deploy action to test and deploy your application or resource. You can choose from several pre-configured actions to deploy your application to different targets, such as Amazon ECS. For more information, see Testing with workflows, and Deploying with workflows.

  6. You start the workflow either manually or automatically through a trigger. The workflow runs the build, test, and deploy actions in sequence to build, test, and deploy your application and resources to the target. For more information, see Starting a workflow run manually.

Benefits of the build action

Using the build action within a workflow has the following benefits:

  • Fully managed – The build action eliminates the need to set up, patch, update, and manage your own build servers.

  • On demand – The build action scales on demand to meet your build needs. You pay only for the number of build minutes you consume. For more information, see Configuring compute and runtime images.

  • Out of the box – CodeCatalyst includes prepackaged runtime environment Docker images that are used to run all your workflow actions, including build actions. These images come preconfigured with useful tools for building applications such as the AWS CLI and Node.js. You can configure CodeCatalyst to use a build image that you supply from a public or private registry. For more information, see Specifying runtime environment images.

Alternatives to the build action

If you're using a build action to deploy your application, consider using a CodeCatalyst deploy action instead. Deploy actions perform behind-the-scenes configuration that you would otherwise have to write manually if you're using a build action. For more information on the available deploy actions, see List of deploy actions.

You can also use AWS CodeBuild to build your applications. For more information, see What is CodeBuild?.