Time to provision build agents

I’m experimenting with GitHub Actions as a replacement for Azure DevOps. A big issue we have with Azure DevOps is that we’re often queued for minutes and sometimes hours waiting for a build agent. We think Microsoft are not able to provision enough build agents.

Yesterday I created a sample project with GitHub Actions and the workflow (incl. wait time) was completed in 35 sec. Just to experiment I changed the README to triggered the workflow again. Now it took 2 min 41 sec. How long should we expect build agent provisioning to take?

This is just speculation on my side, but it seems like GitHub Actions and Azure DevOps share a lot of the same features. Is GitHub Actions a fork? And since GitHub was acquired by Microsoft are you sharing the build agent pool with Azure DevOps?

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The vast majority (90%+) of Actions have VMs assigned within 60s. We do not have public SLAs since we are still in Beta, but that may change with GA. There may have been an transient issue when you saw the delay since it appears the run times in your project have returned to normal.

Under the covers they are similar and share some core technologies, but GitHub Actions is run independently with its own team and build agent pools.

Thank you,


I need builds to finish as fast as possible. Preferably in under 2 minutes. 

I think I saw in an announcement video that it will be possible later this year to “run on your own hw for free”. What’s the ETA on that? Is there a public roadmap somewhere?

Self hosted runners should be available mid November. We’re testing them internally now.