Intro to Helix Swarm – 

Code Review for Helix Core



Code review is a critical part of any developer workflow.

Helix Swarm — the free code review tool used with Helix Core — helps Helix Core users deliver higher quality products, on time.

Create reviews. Comment. Vote. Suggest tasks on your peers’ work. Plus, you can tailor Swarm to match your code review process and development strategy.

Swarm is tightly integrated with Helix Core. It works with the command-line (P4) and Helix Visual Client (P4V), as well as Visual Studio, Eclipse, and your CI/CD solution.

One of the best ways to use Swarm is to automate developer and testing workflows, ensuring changes don’t get stuck in review.


Automate Developer Workflows

Using Helix Swarm can boost your quality and productivity. With Swarm you can manage:

  • Timing (When is the right time to do a review?)
    • Drive stability by enforcing a review before code is built or committed. Or make your codeline move faster by allowing reviews after builds and commits.
  • Policy (What constraints do you have?)
    • Follow code review policies in your organization. For example, at least two peers need to approve something before it can move to your mainline.
  • Automation (When do you trigger automatic tests?):
    • Run a set of automatic tests first. And capture as many issues as possible before peer review.
  • Notifications (When would you like to be informed?):
    • Get updates as soon as reviews need attention. And ensure changes are not stuck waiting for a review.

With Helix Swarm you can automate workflows and be as productive as possible without sacrificing quality. Here’s how it works in practice for different team members.


Steve, Developer

Steve is a new developer who recently joined the team. He requests a review in P4V — the Helix Visual Client. A code review is initiated in Swarm and triggers a set of automatic tests. His teammates receive an email notification that the code is ready for review.

In Helix Swarm, Steve can see all of the reviews associated with his project and their status. He sees what needs to be worked on, and what code is still waiting for a test or review.

Here, he sees it’s in code review but all tests have passed. Steve’s teammates go in and review. They request a change. Steve makes that quick change after their review, and then he can resubmit. Once the team has reviewed and upvoted, his change is automatically approved, and the tests are run again to incorporate the changes that were made. When the test passes, Steve’s change is committed to the development branch automatically. 


Claire, Development Manager

As a development manager, Claire is in charge of keeping her team moving. Implementing workflow rules guides his teams, keeps codelines stable, and helps onboard new developers, like Steve.

Automation helps Claire enforce rules for each branch. Steve was able to make a change to the development branch quickly because Claire set up the following rules:

  • Cannot commit without an approved review.
  • Minimum number of three upvotes to automatically approve.
  • Add tests to workflow to run on update.

Using workflow rules allows Claire to gate changes, like Steve’s, to make sure they are reviewed. Claire can add and update workflows for each branch and easily view how code is evolving and the status of builds and tests.

Here, Claire implements policies for her team’s projects and branches. But you can also set global policies.


Allison, Development Director

As a Development Director, Allison wants to create consistency across all of the teams.  


Helix Swarm’s global dashboards allow Allison to give developers working across multiple Helix Core servers a single place to find their reviews. This makes it easier to share resources across teams. And with advanced replication, Swarm can deliver feedback to teams quickly, no matter where they are located around the globe.

In the Swarm UI, Allison sets a global workflow rule that requires all changelists to have a code review to be committed. By requiring a review, Allison ensures that only reviewed code is committed to the codebase.

For our developer Steve, all of this is going on behind the scenes. Claire and Allison can adjust code review workflow rules as necessary.


Automate More With Helix Core + Helix Swarm

Using Helix Core with Helix Swarm helps developers, development managers, and development directors automate workflows.

Start automating your development workflows with Helix Swarm, the free code review tool for Helix Core! Try Helix Core + Helix Swarm for free today.