Iconscout: Developing on Mac mini for Windows Developers

By Jason Michaud|

October 19, 2020

We have thousands of customers using dedicated Mac minis in the cloud for a variety of projects - from large household brands to innovative startups to hobbyists and individual developers. We wanted to highlight the unique ways customers are leveraging these powerful and flexible machines. If you’d like your project to be featured, let us know.

About Iconscout

Iconscout is a stock photography and design marketplace with more than 2 million assets and 1,200 contributors. Founded in 2016, Iconscout provides design resources and management tools for creative professionals around the world.

Iconscout maintains a Mac and Windows application and plugins for popular design software like Sketch, Photoshop, and Illustrator.

Team and Workflow

The Mac and Windows app is based on Electron. In addition, the team also manages the website using PHP Laravel. The team has been practicing CI/CD for the past two years, using primarily GitLab CI.

Their day-to-day looks like most development teams, performing bug fixes, developing new features, and pushing code updates twice a day.

Developing on Mac mini for Windows Developers

When Iconscout started with MacStadium, all of the developers were running Windows machines. They wanted to develop a plugin for the popular Mac design tool, Sketch. When looking for a hosted Mac provider, they found MacStadium.

Because having Sketch installed on the host machine is required to build a Sketch plugin, using a traditional CI service was not an option. Once Iconscout’s co-founder and chief technology officer, Tarun Mangukiya, finished developing the app remotely at MacStadium, he was able to keep the machine in service to build and test updates to the plugin. The Mac mini is now integrated into his CI pipeline hosted at GitLab, which triggers new builds at MacStadium.

Working with MacStadium

“I was familiar with developing on Windows, so I didn’t know how to use the macOS GUI at first, but that’s something I figured out. Support helped me with how to login the first time and after that, everything was good,” said Mangukiya.

In Good Company

Iconscout, like many of our cloud customers, has development teams using a Windows environment but also needs to support customers using a Mac. The Iconscout team quickly iterated through the early phase of building the app through VNC into the more advanced use case of using their Mac mini as a remote CI build and test machine. Have a good story about building for both Mac and Windows? Let us know!

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