Getting Started

Welcome to the guided tour of Semaphore! In this guide we help you get up and running with Semaphore and introduce you to its key features. If you're new to Semaphore or have limited Semaphore experience, then this is the best place to start.

What is Semaphore?

Semaphore is a cloud-based automation service for building, testing and deploying software.

Developers use Semaphore to implement continuous integration (CI) and continuous delivery (CD) pipelines, which help get software from version control right to users in a safe and automated way.

Semaphore is built for developer productivity, guided by two principles:

  1. Speed: Developers must work in a fast feedback loop, so CI/CD processes must be fast.
  2. Ease of use: CI/CD tool needs to support developers in everything they need to build, at any scale, and shouldn't get in the way.

Configuration files describe to Semaphore the CI/CD pipelines which need to run based on Git repositories. Semaphore executes pipelines on every change in code. As the configuration changes, Semaphore is able to determine what changed and adapt the workflow accordingly.

In the background, Semaphore manages the hardware resources needed to run CI/CD jobs just-in-time. It also maintains the base software environment in which your code runs in secure isolation. With Semaphore, there is no software to install or infrastructure to maintain in order to implement continuous delivery in your organization.

What sets Semaphore apart?

A combination of features make Semaphore a strong fit for teams that optimize for getting things done:

  • Pipelines as code: traditionally associated with tools that require costly self-hosting and detailed customization, infinitely configurable CD pipelines are now available in an easy to use package.
  • It's fastest there is: Semaphore provides the best out of the box CI/CD performance on the market, which means shorter development cycles and faster innovation. Moving to Semaphore usually saves hours of precious time per week per developer.
  • There's nothing to maintain: with no resources to manage, scale and pay for separately, developers can focus on building products. Semaphore has a track record of providing a reliable CI/CD service since 2012.
  • No vendor lock-in: Semaphore is committed to supporting all major code hosting and cloud providers, leaving you freedom to choose optimal solutions.

Next steps

It's time to create your first project using an example Semaphore configuration file. You will be able to see Semaphore in action first before customizing it for your use case.

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