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10 Sep 2021

Introduction to Coder

Overview

As a developer contributing to a project for the first time, it may take days, or even weeks to set up your environment properly.

But with Coder, it's as simple as clicking a button to spin up an environment with everything you need to make your first contribution.

Transcript Highlights

As a developer contributing to a project for the first time, it may take days, or even weeks to set up their environment properly.

But with Coder, it's as simple as clicking a button to spin up an environment with everything you need to make your first contribution.

Now, how is all of this possible?

While this workspace spins up, let's take a look at the workspace template the DevOps and Coder admin teams have set up for us.

Coder centralizes the creation and orchestration of developer workspaces, in a secure and repeatable way, inspired by GitOps and Infrastructure as Code.

With Dockerfiles and Workspace templates, the DevOps team and admins are able to codify the developer's environment for a project, be it a mono-repo or a set of micro-services.

This leads to better traceability, adds audit controls, and reduces the configuration drift between developers.

Now let's check back in on our developer workspace.

Our app is running, and we want to make a quick change to the front end. Coder supports a variety of IDEs. Let's open up VS Code, and implement our feature.

In this case, I'll just make a simple change like modifying the background color.

Now, let's see what that looks like in our app.

That looks good to me.

So now I'll continue with my normal process of committing and pushing my changes, then submitting a pull request for code review, and for our CI to run.

Coder is great for mono-repos, but it can also work with more complex projects, like legacy Java apps, or projects with many micro-services spread across repositories.

Typically, developers spend a lot of time managing their environments, and often need to switch between local versions of languages using tools like RVM, NVM, pyenv, and so on.

With Coder, switching workspaces is quick, and avoids the conflicts you'd otherwise have switching back and forth on your local machine.

Coder brings the power and convenience of the cloud to the development environment, without interrupting the developer's preferred tools and workflow.