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Thanks for visiting this direction page on the Runner Fleet category at GitLab. This page belongs to the Runner Group within the Verify Stage and is maintained by Darren Eastman.
Our vision is that GitLab Runner Fleet is the best-in-class solution for managing CI/CD build agents and environments at scale. In FY24 the primary focus is on creating a consolidated (single-pane-of glass) solution to manage the fleet of Runners connected to a GitLab instance.
Runner Fleet is an enabler for the Ultimate Adoption FY24 product strategy.
The primary FY 2024 Runner Fleet goals are as follows:
In the next three months (March to May 2023) we plan to work on the following:
In February 2023, our primary focus is on the design and front-end development to deliver the new runner creation workflow to enable the Next Runner Token architecture.
In the past three months, we have shipped the following key features:
In the near term, we are not focused on design or development efforts to improve Runners usability in CI/CD settings at the project level. While improvements in this view could be valuable to the software developer persona, our primary target persona for Runner Fleet in FY24 is the infrastructure operations persona.
BIC (Best In Class) is an indicator of forecasted near-term market performance based on a combination of factors, including analyst views, market news, and feedback from the sales and product teams. It is critical that we understand where GitLab appears in the BIC landscape.
At GitLab, a critical challenge is simplifying the administration and management of a CI/CD build fleet at an enterprise scale. This effort is one foundational pillar to realizing the vision of AI-optimized DevOps. Competitors are also investing in this general category. Earlier this year GitHub announced a new management experience that provides a summary view of GitHub-hosted runners. This is a signal that there will be a focus on reducing maintenance and configuration overhead for managing a CI/CD build environment at scale across the industry.
We also now see additional features on the GitLab public roadmap signaling an increased investment in the category we coined here at GitLab, 'Runner Fleet'. These features suggest that GitHub's goals are to provide a first-class experience for managing GitHub Actions runners and include features in the UI to simplify runner queue management and resolve performance bottlenecks. With this level of planned investment, it is clear that there is recognition in the market that simplifying the administrative maintenance and overhead of the CI build fleet is critical for large customers and will help enable deeper product adoption.
To ensure that our GitLab customers can fully realize the value of GitLab's product vision, we must provide solutions that eliminate the complexities, manual tasks, and operational overhead and reduce the costs of delivering a CI build environment at scale.
The key capabilities that we hear from customers describing fleet management pain points are as follows:
In FY 2024, the critical focus area for achieving best-in-class is delivering the new Fleet management experience, including Runner queue and performance metrics.
Runner Fleet is still a nascent category - however, we are noticing competitors like GitHub begin to invest in this area. In Q2 2023 (APR-JUN), GitHub plans to introduce seamless management of GitHub-hosted and self-hosted runners. This feature aims to deliver a "single management plane to manage all runners for a team using GitHub."