Handling thorny Ruby dependency updates


Since launching Dependabot for Ruby six months ago, we've had a guilty secret: Dependabot couldn't handle the most difficult updates. Specifically, it couldn't hack updates where multiple dependencies needed to be updated at the same time.

Now it can.

Want an example? Check out this pull request. Here, the Gemfile specified both bootstrap and popper_js and bootstrap also relied on popper_js as a sub-dependency. All the specifications had tight version requirements, so the only way to update was to bump both gems at the same time.

Don't think it's that common? Well, we see lots of Gemfiles specifying both rspec and rspec-rails, for example.

There used to be a name for difficult updates like these - it was "dependency hell". With it's new multi-dependency updating powers, Dependabot should be able to make that a thing of the past.

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