Privately share configuration across your organization: Private orbs now on CircleCI

Two years ago CircleCI launched open-source orbs. With these orbs, developers across the globe have been able to simplify their entire development process and shorten their time to production. In that time, over 2,000 orbs have been created, 10,000+ unique organizations are using them on a monthly basis, and they have been integrated into nearly 18 million CI/CD pipelines.

Not familiar with orbs? Orbs are reusable packages of YAML configuration that help developers automate repeated processes, speed up project setup, and make it easy to integrate with third-party tools.

Developers are leveraging a variety of orbs available on our public registry to help automate what would otherwise be manual, time-draining, repeated processes. For example, the following are a few of our most utilized orbs:

  • The Slack orb implements event-based notifications for a developer’s CI/CD pipelines
  • CircleCI partner Codecov’s orb provides test coverage across applications
  • Community-developed React Native orb builds and tests React Native projects

What’s next for orbs from CircleCI?

Many of our customers have asked the team at CircleCI to provide them with a way to privately share configuration across multiple projects, exclusive to their organization. We listened, and now, we are excited to announce our release of private orbs.

These organizations typically have many repos they must manage, so standardizing configuration and being able to privately share it across projects is a substantial priority. All CircleCI plans offer your organization access to an unlimited number of private orbs.

Where are CircleCI private orbs useful?

Private orbs provide developers with increased privacy, efficiency, and collaboration across teams. This is especially useful for teams working in healthcare, finance, and other industries with high governance and compliance standards.

How CircleCI private orbs work

Private orbs will not appear on the public registry, and only those within your organization can access them. Users with read or write permissions will only be able to see and manage private orbs if they are authenticated to do so in your organization.

Authenticated users can quickly and easily find and manage all existing orbs that your organization has created by viewing the dedicated “Orbs” page within the Organization Settings tab of CircleCI. Admins and orb authors can quickly repeat or update useful configurations directly from this page.

How to author a private orb

To author a new private orb, utilize the CircleCI local CLI tool. Administrators can fully control what orbs are available to their teams, since only admins have the privilege to create, publish, and update private orbs using the orb development kit or manual orb authoring process.

Check out the following video to learn how to author a private orb:

Get the best CI/CD experience

In addition to private orbs and Runner, Scale plan includes unlimited concurrency for running multiple builds at the same time and robust resources for executing compute-intensive applications. These features enable your team to build incredible application experiences for your end users.

Administrators on our paid plans can now create, publish, and maintain their private orbs. For more details on how to start privately sharing configuration across multiple projects within your organization, refer to our orbs documentation.

To learn more about how private orbs increase privacy, efficiency, and internal sharing across an organization, contact our customer success team or read our Discuss post.