Meet the Orka-Tekton Integration: Futuristic CI/CD on macOS

By Spike Burton|

February 23, 2022

We are continually working to expand the Orka ecosystem through the development of integrations with leading CI/CD tools and platforms. Orka-Tekton is one of our more forward-looking integrations, in that it leverages Orka’s Kubernetes (K8s) functionality to interact with the Orka API to manage the macOS compute resources required for the execution of Tekton tasks and pipelines on the macOS nodes in your Orka cluster.

What's Tekton, and why is the community excited about it?

Tekton is a modern, powerful, open-source framework for automating all sorts of things. It is especially well-loved for its ability to simplify inherently complex automation efforts, such as those found in CI/CD pipelines. It runs on top of Kubernetes, and so the various resources that you will create when using Tekton will be very familiar to K8s users.

The power and versatility of K8s is the driver of excitement in the industry around Tekton for CI/CD in particular. These factors allow Tekton to provide functionality familiar to Jenkins users in a modern tool that is YAML-based, and that can be controlled by kubectl.

How can I use Tekton with my Orka cluster for macOS and iOS CI/CD?

The Orka-Tekton integration makes it simple to associate your Orka cluster to your existing Tekton deployment so that you can run CI/CD for macOS and iOS, which require builds to be executed on certified Mac hardware.

There are a few prerequisites to get squared away before you’ll be ready to deploy the integration. Namely, you’ll need to have the following in place:

#1: A Kubernetes cluster with Tekton Pipelines v0.16.0 or later configured.

#2: An Orka environment with the following components: - Orka 1.4.1 or later.

- An Orka service endpoint (IP or custom domain). Usually, http://10.221.188.100, http://10.10.10.100 or https://<custom-domain>.

- A dedicated Orka user with valid credentials (email and password). Create a new user or request one from your Orka administrator.

- An SSH-enabled base image and the respective SSH credentials (email and password OR SSH key). Use an existing base image or create your own.

#3: An active VPN connection between your Kubernetes cluster and Orka. Use a VPN client for temporary access or create a site-to-site VPN tunnel for permanent access.

With these pieces in place, you’ll be in excellent hands with the integration’s documentation as you move to install the Orka-Tekton resources, and as you begin to put them to use.

Orka-Tekton in action

Once you’ve associated your Orka cluster with your Tekton deployment, there are two primary ways in which this integration can be put into production. You can either employ it as a mechanism for spinning up a single macOS VM per workflow execution, or as one for spinning up multiple macOS VMs per workflow run in order to execute independent portions of your workflow in parallel, and thus dramatically reduce time for execution.

Additionally, in the integration’s repository, you will find a variety of sample YAML definitions meant as guides for such cases as creating a fundamental build pipeline, a parallel deployment, and more.

TL;DR

At MacStadium we are continually working to improve the Orka ecosystem through the continued development of diverse and powerful integrations that make easy work of connecting leading CI/CD tools and platforms with your Orka cluster for industry-leading macOS and iOS CI/CD.

To this end, we’ve developed Orka-Tekton, an enormously powerful and modern, K8s-based integration that will allow teams currently using Tekton to execute non-Mac CI/CD processes to extend this functionality to support macOS and iOS CI/CD processes as well.

Want to learn more about Orka? Check out all of the great things in our latest release in our Orka 2.0 release notes. Not a current Orka user? You can give Orka a try with a free two-hour Orka demo environment.

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