Meta Stack Exchange is where users like you discuss bugs, features, and support issues that affect the software powering all 158 Stack Exchange communities.

What is meta?
Here's how it works:
  1. Any Stack Exchange user can ask a question
  2. The community provides support, votes on ideas, and reports bugs
  3. Your voice helps shape the way Stack Exchange operates

There is some amount of questions about Jenkins/Hudson, and how to use them to achieve something. I have not paid attention to other CI systems, but I assume they have similar questions.

These are very much software development tools of course, but these questions are in essence, "Is there a plugin to do this? How should I configure it using a web form based UI".

Are these on topic now? Should they remain on topic?

Then there are also actual programming questions related to these, since they allow easy plugin development, and this is obviously on-topic. Though currently tags do not separate "how to use" and "how to develop for" Jenkins/Hudson, which IMO is a bit unfortunate.

I suppose this is very similar to, is "How to configure Visual Studio" question on topic, when "I have a problem with this Visual Studio plugin I'm developing" certainly is?

Note: I'm definitely not complaining about this, and there isn't any flood of these questions so it doesn't matter much one way or another. I suppose the other programming-related SE sites were started only after there started to be so many questions, that getting them to a dedicated site and out of SO was necessary?

Edit: Motivation for asking: I personally am interested in the development questions, not so much in the usage questions, but currently there is no way to tell these apart. There are actually 4 tags (jenkins, hudson, jenkins-plugins, hudson-plugins), which contain a mix of "how to use" and "how to program" questions.

share|improve this question
up vote 9 down vote accepted

CI systems are software tools (and not really used outside of software circles).

Questions about software tools are on-topic.

share|improve this answer
But arguably shell scrips are also programming tool, as well as programming in their own right. Yet there are and and probably others, which similarily cover programming topics. Also, quite often (in larger organizations), the CI system is a bit separate from actual hands-on SW development, and maintaining it is more a system adminstrator type job. – hyde Mar 18 '13 at 13:10
@hyde - There is some overlap, yes. And when it comes to shell scripts, topicality depends on the question - if the question is about developing a shell script, it can be on topic on either of these. If it is strictly about usage of existing ones, it wouldn't be on topic for SO. – Oded Mar 18 '13 at 13:11
...except if the existing ones were actually programming scripts, I suppose ;). – hyde Mar 18 '13 at 13:18
I don't know if this is a sign of the moderation line shifting, or just random variation:… – hyde Mar 20 '13 at 7:21
@hyde - it isn't shifting. The question isn't about the tool in a programming capacity, but sys admin capacity. If the question was about usage rather than system issues... – Oded Mar 20 '13 at 8:42
I guess I have very programming-centric point of view, but I fail to see a significant distinction between that (problem with running programming tool), and questions found with search like "how to configure jenkins to send mail" (problem with configuring programming tool). But this is hardly worth debating further, I'll do my best to be in line and consistent with my own voting. – hyde Mar 20 '13 at 9:06

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .