Harness

Continuous Integration

VS

Jenkins

Continuous Integration

Harness CI is an enterprise–grade, cloud native CI product. It’s designed for developer self-service while enabling DevOps and Platform engineers to extend granular and customized governance at scale.

Company size
Company size

500-1000

Founded
Founded

2016

Funding
Funding

195m

Harness is categorized as:
Continuous Integration
Continuous Delivery
Cloud Cost Management
Cloud Cost Optimization
Feature Flags

Free TrialFree TrialFree TrialFree Trial

Jenkins

Jenkins is an open source automation server with an unparalleled plugin ecosystem to support practically every tool as part of your delivery pipelines.

Company size
Company size

1-50

Founded
Founded

2012

Funding
Funding

Jenkins is categorized as:
Continuous Integration

We’re The Best Continuous Integration Solution, See For Yourself.

Harness DevOps Tools Vs. Jenkins

Updated

February 1, 2022

Free & Paid

24800

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Vault/KMS/3rd

<yes><yes> Lightweight

<yes><yes> .25 FTE

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<yes><yes> Per User

Free

17000

<no><no> Scripting TOIL

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<no><no> Heavy Weight

<no><no> 2-5 FTE

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<yes><yes> Free

Open-Source:

Harness DevOps tools Vs. Jenkins

Open source vs. Open core:

Jenkins was created in 2012 as open-source software, so there is no associated software price. Drone is also open-source. There is, however, a paid version of Drone that provides access to enterprise support and more integrations and features. Additional features include secrets management options, autoscaling, custom plugins, and more.

Self-Service (Simple):

Jenkins does it all – but at a cost. That cost is a large investment of time and effort (and FTEs). We’ll give credit where it’s due: Jenkins is quite customizable and flexible – both important things. But, it also has a high learning curve. To configure Jenkins, you’ll most likely need to depend on plugins and scripts, both of which require maintenance and can open engineers up to dependency hell. Drone is built upon three pillars that enable engineers to build and test code quickly and accurately: simple, scalable, self-service. Drone installs in under 5 minutes, scales on demand, and all plugins run in containers on their latest version. This means less person hours spent by engineers maintaining the tool, and more time on what matters: getting that code to artifact.

Requires Scripting:

As mentioned above, Jenkins Scripting will require Java, Groovy, Javascript, Golang, Ruby or Shell knowledge. The more complex the setup, the more scripts/plugins needed. Drone is much more intuitive.

Container & Cloud-Native:

Jenkins wasn’t designed to be cloud-native, but developers and DevOps teams have been making it work for years. There is a group of contributors and collaborators focusing on improving Jenkins’ cloud capabilities. For instance, they’ve created a Jenkins Kubernetes operator. While it’s definitely progress, albeit slow, we frankly don’t believe that CI/CD should be that hard. Jenkins’ architecture has a clear audience in mind. From their docs: “The audience is Java developers familiar with Jenkins (as users) who want to understand how Jenkins works internally.” Not that Java architectures can’t be cloud native but it’s an architecture that wasn’t designed with that in mind.

GitOps:

For GitOps on Jenkins, we’d recommend evaluating Jenkins X because it has built-in GitOps. It’s possible to do it on Jenkins, but harder to set up. Drone comes with built-in GitOps functionality.

Containerized Plugins:

Jenkins’ plugin index boasts almost 1800 plugins – with many being abandoned by their authors, unmaintained, or duplicated (ie, 10 plugins that do the same thing). Drone’s 150 plugins are much more manageable. All plugins are containerized and maintained to their latest version. No dependency hell, no updating – only simplicity and portability. Treat your Drone plugins as cattle. Scale them elasticity at will, kill idle ones as easily.

Secrets Management:

Jenkins does not offer native secrets management capabilities. There are many ways to do it through a third party, such as HashiCorp Vault or Helm Secrets. Drone offers encryption on its open-source version. Meanwhile, the enterprise version offers these alternatives: encrypted, native, or externally, through third-party providers such as AWS Secret Manager, Kubernetes Secrets, and HashiCorp Vault. No matter how you want your secrets to be handled, Drone can rise to the occasion.

Scalability:

Jenkins is less scalable than Drone, and here’s why. Jenkins instances have to be manually spun up, while Drone has autoscalers (through Amazon EC2, Digital Ocean, Google Computer, Hetzner, Open Stack, and Packet). Jenkins also takes up more server space than Drone. Jenkins, in and of itself (and compared to other tools), may not be heavyweight – but when compared specifically to Drone, it is.

Admin & Maintenance:

Jenkins is one of the most maintenance-intensive CI tools on the market, which is expected from a ten year old product. From our clients’ data, we’ve extrapolated that Jenkins requires between 2-5 FTEs to maintain and administer every year. That time is spent writing scripts, doing research on plugins, maintaining and updating plugins, etc. Drone stamps out maintenance issues at a whopping .25 FTEs needed (that’s not a typo). It’s an extremely portable solution without scripting, plugin maintenance, or dependency hell – or much else in terms of maintenance, for that matter. The plug-and-play nature of Drone ensures the only work you have to perform, other than the initial setup and configuration of course, is administration – such as adding and removing users, permissions, etc.

Total Cost of Ownership:

Free doesn’t always mean free. While Jenkins itself doesn’t cost a cent, it does cost a pretty penny in terms of employee need and time. As mentioned above, our clients have stated it requires between 2-5 FTEs to keep Jenkins up and running. Let’s say your average engineer costs you $180,000, that’s almost a million dollars per year dedicated to a single piece of software. Drone, however, only “costs” .25 FTEs, which on our $180,000 example, results in $45,000. A bit of a difference in total cost of ownership.

Pricing:

Jenkins is open-source – there is no pricing. Drone is free and available for download. It also has an enterprise version that is extremely feature-rich, but does have pricing attached to it. To familiarize yourself with enterprise pricing, please contact sales.

*Please note: Our competitors, just like us, release updates to their products on a regular cadence. We keep these pages updated to the best of our ability, but there are bound to be discrepancies. For the most up-to-date information on competitor features, browsing the competitor’s new release pages and communities are your best bet.

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Harness CD

Interested in seeing whats under the hood? Browse through the Harness Continuous Delivery (CD) Product.

Don’t Believe Us? Check Out What These Beautiful People Have To Say.

Don’t just take our word for it, see why customers love Harness Continuous Delivery (CD) as compared to our competition.

When we started using containers, Drone was the obvious choice. We moved from Jenkins CI/CD to Drone.

Source G2 Crowd

Its flexible yet standardized nature enables our teams to unify on a plugin-extensible, ready-to-use CI/CD pipeline that supports any custom build environment.

Source The New York Times

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