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Nestor – A Faster And Simpler CLI For Jenkins

It all started because at one point I was using a rather resource-challenged machine running Windows and an Ubuntu VM at the same time, and Firefox froze every so often, rendering Jenkins BuildMonitor and Jenkins web interface useless most of the time. So I looked for an alternative and gave Jenkins CLI a go.

Like most Java applications, Jenkins built-in CLI also suffers from slow start up time (flame suit: ON) due to core Java libraries loading (Kohsuke later told me on #jenkins that there’s also a handshaking process involved). This led me to try Jenkins Remote Access API with curl, which performed significantly faster than Jenkins CLI.

So that’s great, but I have another issue with the fact that Jenkins CLI’s commands start with “java -jar jenkins-cli.jar …”, that’s a finger twister right there, and lengthy curl + URL obviously doesn’t help.

Enter Nestor, a Jenkins CLI written in Node.js that aims to be a faster and simpler alternative to the existing solutions. The catch? Node.js and npm support on Windows is not there yet, so if you managed to run Nestor on Windows please let me know about it. Nestor has been tested and used daily on OS X and Linux.

Simple setup

Install Nestor using npm install -g nestor

Configure the Jenkins instance you want to use using export JENKINS_URL=http://user:pass@host:port/path

Simple usage

Nestor commands are simple, it’s always nestor <action> <param>

To trigger a build

> nestor build studio-bob
Job was started successfully

To view a job status

> nestor job studio-bob
Status: OK
No xml report files found for checkstyle
Build stability: 3 out of the last 5 builds failed.

To list the executors

> nestor executor
* master
idle
39%	studio-bob

To view the queue

> nestor queue
Queue is empty

To view all jobs status on the dashboard

> nestor dashboard
WARN	blojsom-bloojm
OK	jenkins-buildmonitor
FAIL	studio-ae86
OK	studio-bob

Check out Nestor’s GitHub README page for more commands available.

Hopefully that’s simple enough.

Note: The name Nestor was inspired by Captain Haddock’s butler at Marlinspike Hall, not the Argonaut one.

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2 Comments

    • Cliffano Subagio

      Great to hear that :). Thanks for letting me know!

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