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RBE with GitHub Actions

Using BuildBuddy with Github Actions is an easy way to get started using BuildBuddy with a CI system. For an even easier way to get started, see the BuildBuddy Workflows Setup Guide.

Setup instructions

There are three steps:

  1. Create a workflow file
  2. Update your .bazelrc
  3. Set up a GitHub Secret containing your BuildBuddy API key

Workflow file

All you have to do is create a file .github/workflows/main.yaml

name: CI

- master

runs-on: ubuntu-latest

- name: Checkout
uses: actions/checkout@v3

- name: Install bazelisk
run: |
curl -LO ""
mkdir -p "${GITHUB_WORKSPACE}/bin/"
mv bazelisk-linux-amd64 "${GITHUB_WORKSPACE}/bin/bazel"
chmod +x "${GITHUB_WORKSPACE}/bin/bazel"
- name: Build
run: |
"${GITHUB_WORKSPACE}/bin/bazel" build \
--config=ci \
--remote_header=x-buildbuddy-api-key=${{ secrets.BUILDBUDDY_ORG_API_KEY }} \
- name: Test
run: |
"${GITHUB_WORKSPACE}/bin/bazel" test \
--config=ci \
--remote_header=x-buildbuddy-api-key=${{ secrets.BUILDBUDDY_ORG_API_KEY }} \

Updating your .bazelrc

You'll then need to add the following configuration to your .bazelrc

build:ci --build_metadata=ROLE=CI
build:ci --bes_results_url=
build:ci --bes_backend=grpcs://

Github secrets

Finally, you'll need to create a GitHub Secret containing your BuildBuddy API Key.

You can get your BuildBuddy API key by logging in to your BuildBuddy account and visiting your Quickstart page.

Add your BuildBuddy API Key as GitHub Secret named BUILDBUDDY_ORG_API_KEY. For more information on setting up Github Secrets, click here.


Github commit statuses

If you'd like BuildBuddy to publish commit statuses to your repo, you can do so by logging in and clicking Link Github Account in the user menu in the top right.


By default, authenticated builds are only visible to members of your BuildBuddy organization. If you'd like your BuildBuddy results pages to be visible to members outside of your organization, you can add the following line to your .bazelrc:

build:ci --build_metadata=VISIBILITY=PUBLIC

Remote build execution

If you'd like to use BuildBuddy's Remote Build Execution capabilities in your CI workflow, you can add the following lines to your .bazelrc:

build:remote --remote_cache=grpcs://
build:remote --remote_executor=grpcs://
build:remote --remote_upload_local_results
build:remote --host_platform=@buildbuddy_toolchain//:platform
build:remote --platforms=@buildbuddy_toolchain//:platform
build:remote --crosstool_top=@buildbuddy_toolchain//:toolchain
build:remote --jobs=100

build:ci --config=remote

And the following lines to your WORKSPACE file:

name = "io_buildbuddy_buildbuddy_toolchain",
sha256 = "b12273608db627eb14051eb75f8a2134590172cd69392086d392e25f3954ea6e",
strip_prefix = "buildbuddy-toolchain-8d5d18373adfca9d8e33b4812915abc9b132f1ee",
urls = [""],

load("@io_buildbuddy_buildbuddy_toolchain//:deps.bzl", "buildbuddy_deps")


load("@io_buildbuddy_buildbuddy_toolchain//:rules.bzl", "buildbuddy")

buildbuddy(name = "buildbuddy_toolchain")

If you're using Java, or have a complex project - you'll likely need to configure the toolchain flags a bit. For more information, see our Remote Build Execution guide.