Spotlight: Release Visibility

Spotlight: Release Visibility

May 11, 2023

We are excited to introduce new features that increase visibility and add insights into your release cycle.

At Tramline, our focus is to balance automating manual work, adding integrations to cover as much ground as possible, and providing a high degree of visibility to people across the board responsible for making a successful release — testers, engineers, designers, and managers.

This is the first in this month’s edition of our product updates focused entirely on release visibility. We hope you like it!

🔮 Your app in the store at a glance

While you're busy shipping a new release, making it stable, and getting it out to different distribution channels, it's helpful to have a quick summary and make sure everything looks great on the storefront.

As soon as you connect your app, we start periodically pulling the current status of the app on the App Store or Play Store. This data is fetched and updated regardless of an active release cycle on Tramline.

🔔 Keep your entire team informed on Slack

Tramline will actively (and sometimes proactively) inform the team about important highlights during a release. You can connect Slack as a notification provider and pick a channel to send updates, such as:

A new release has been kicked off (and a release branch has been cut)

A release version has been rolled out to a percentage of users

A release was fully rolled out to all users

…and a whole lot more.

Refer to the docs on how to get set up with Slack notifications.

We are actively working on improving notifications and are also exploring other providers like Microsoft Teams and plain old e-mail for the near future.

👀 Find the pesky build that one user is complaining about

Your CI/CD workflow happily generates all the build artifacts. And then what? How does your team end up finding stuff when they actually need it?

Tramline treats a release as first-class, so we have a view into all the builds you have ever created. You can search builds by their number or name, figure out what release cycle the build belonged to, the specific CI workflow responsible for its creation, the various distribution channels it was sent to, and a direct download link for the build artifact.

Here’s the All Builds page in action, you can find it on your App page.

🕵️ Who did what and when

If you look under the covers, there’s actually a surprising amount of context and information created during a release cycle that is perhaps not self-evident. The point of shipping a release, of course, is to make forward progress, but it can be super helpful to take a look back at what all goes into a release and who is responsible for what. This isn’t just useful for auditing, but also for improving bottlenecks in the release process.

For every release, we maintain a detailed event log of all the important events. These are broadly divided into categories of — neutral notices, successful operations, and notable failures.

What else?

Get started today on Tramline, or book a call with us and we’ll help you automate and streamline your app releases. If you need support, find us here!

That’s all for this week, until the next train! 🚃

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