Want to know more about CruiseControl, Hudson, and other CI tools? Meet the creators, contributers and users at the next CITCON conference in Melbourne, June 27th & 28th. Cannot make it to Melbourne? Then CITCON Amsterdam, October 3 & 4 is for you (I know I‘ll be there). Or CITCON Minneapolis, April 17 & 18, 2009.
First, a warning: these data are not reliable. The sources have several disclaimers, so please take them with an healthy pinch of salt. Also, the oldest data for Hudson were from the beginning of the year, while those for CruiseControl were not available with the same details for all periods of time. This explains why the two graphs below do not span the same periods of time.
Those stats do not include plugins for Hudson nor CruiseControl.
The weekly downloads are interesting because the are made of constant chunks of 7 days. This graph, spanning only 2 months, suggests that CruiseControl has 2 to 3 times the number of downloads that Hudson has. However, its lead is getting smaller.
The monthly downloads data are available from the beginning of year 2008 which is not bad. However, keep in mind that all months do not have the same number of days (I considered dividing by the number of days per month, but then I’d also have to control for the number of WE days in a month, which is too hard for me). The trend is even clearer than for the monthly graph: the CC stats hardly make any increase, while Hudson gains almost 50% more downloads.
It is tempting to conclude that CruiseControl is losing its lead to Hudson. However, you need to take in account a few more facts:
- Hudson has 2 or 3 releases per week, prompting many fans like me to download it very often, increasing artificially the popularity of the tool. CruiseControl has around 4 releases a year, making it much more stable (it also means that the releases contain much bigger changes). I speculate that recent Hudson users will be less tempted to update to the very last version as often as older users.
- Hudson is still hot and new, while CruiseControl is old news. A number of users want to be the first to talk about it, which explains why it has a disproportionate number of fans in some conferences. The novelty effect will decline in time.
- CruiseControl has a strong organization that keeps putting more money behind it, while Hudson is still very much controlled by its creator; Kohsuke’s employer has yet to define a clearer strategy for it — if they ever do so. So it is still very much possible for CruiseControl to eventually catch up technologically with Hudson.
- The statistics for CruiseControl only take in account CruiseControl Java. The .NET and Ruby versions, though distinct, add to the mindshare of the tool.