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Top 11 GitHub Alternatives for Hosting Projects


July 28, 2023


March 27th, 2024


A very popular and commonly known platform, GitHub is leveraged for collaboration, sharing, and project management. It is a well-known platform for central storage and management of code that is shared by all team members in a synchronized manner.

Though GitHub has its own fan base globally, there are certain hitches that cause users to look for GitHub alternatives. Whether you are a startup, small, medium, or large organization, there are many alternatives to GitHub available that can help you achieve your requirements and goals.

This article focuses on leading GitHub alternatives and the key features that have become prevalent worldwide. Before that, let us quickly glance through GitHub and its features.

What is GitHub?

GitHub is a leading version control system source code management tool. As an open-source platform, it facilitates developers’ sharing and maintaining their code centrally. It manages all types of files and stores their versions accurately. Now a subsidiary of Microsoft, GitHub helps developers collaborate on projects with different tools accessible on GitHub.

What is GitHub used for?

It mainly empowers developers to work simultaneously on multiple projects. It is characterized by three powerful terminologies: Repository for storing the entire code, Fork for copying the code from one repository to another, and upstream for marking the party that owns the code from where you have taken it.

Some of its salient features are its strong and robust community, simple version control mechanism, centralization for open-source projects, diverse integration preferences, and cloud storage for easy usage. Its limitations include a confusing user interface, difficulty for novices to learn, and the need to pay for certain features. Possibly, these restrictions lead to exploring GitHub alternatives, those which could overcome these limitations.

Top 11 GitHub Alternatives Popular Today

  • GitLab
  • Bitbucket
  • Beanstalk
  • SourceForge
  • Gitea
  • CloudBees
  • Launchpad
  • GitBucket
  • AWS CodeCommit
  • Apache Allura
  • Codegiant

1. GitLab

GitLab is an ideal alternative to GitHub since it is free, open-source, and has a user-friendly interface that is smooth and efficient. Considered a DevOps tool, it is highly secure, accurate, and fast, and multiple users support it. There is an internal security notification dashboard through email/Slack for high-priority security notifications. There are private repositories with appropriate user control depending on their roles, along with CI/CD and audit management.

Key Features

  • Easy collaboration with team members
  • Workflow automation and codebase management
  • Backlog management, portfolio management, risk management
  • Complete inbuilt integration that favors own CI tools
  • Authentication and authorization with relevant permissions
  • Robust DevOps competencies with better collaboration
  • Supports larger files in a better manner with multimedia elements
  • Issue tracking, charts and graphs, project, and portfolio planning tools

2. Bitbucket

Owned by Atlassian, Bitbucket is a Git-based alternative to GitHub that empowers project management teams to plan their project lifecycle and simultaneously engage in reliable collaboration with private code repositories. It offers secure workflows with CI/CD competencies along with effective version control management. It is written in Python and created with the Django framework.

It was created for teams to integrate with Atlassian tools like Jira and Trello. It is ideal for smaller projects who want to keep their code private without paying extra.

Key Features:

  • Storage of large files and media files in Git Large File Storage
  • Inserting files with the Git command line
  • Effective Trello and Jira integration
  • Third-party integration with build integration
  • Inbuilt continuous delivery and issue tracking
  • Integrated test automation, security scan, and code monitoring
  • Support for Mercurial, Git, CodePlex, SourceForge etc.
  • Customizable permission settings
  • CI/CD competencies through pipelines

3. Beanstalk

Beanstalk is a popular cloud-driven and browser-based code management tool. It is a robust, secure, and accurate GitHub alternative. It manages source code repositories with ease and enhances the development workflow. Since it can operate through the browser, it is accessible from anywhere in the world.

It offers seamless integration with online messaging programs and emails for better team collaboration. It offers enhanced security features like two-factor encryption, bank-level encryption and password protection.

Key Features:

  • Creation and management of repositories
  • Multiple environment utilization for faster code deployment
  • Management of feedback on issues and discussions
  • Personalized deployment configuration for different environments
  • Simple to use with an attractive user interface

4. SourceForge

SourceForge is a known GitHub alternative that is free and open-source and meant to lead projects to success. It is developer-friendly, and developers are comfortable developing, reviewing, and distributing open-source projects. SourceForge is hosted on Apache and Allura and supports other projects.

Projects can also be transferred to this platform from GitHub for better performance, lower costs, and faster delivery. It offers integrated issue tracking with a wide mirror network that can showcase your content online at any desired geographic location.

Key Features:

  • Accessible analytics based on parameters like region, location, platform, etc.
  • Open-source directory facilitating project categorization, video generation, and sharing on social media
  • Browser-based code browsing
  • Supports blogs, forums, mailing lists
  • Free hosting for open-source projects
  • Easy tracking of bugs, user feedback
  • Strong community support
  • Support for distributed version control systems like SVN, Git, Mercurial, etc.

5. Gitea

Gitea is one of the best alternatives to GitHub. It can be executed anywhere on varied platforms with minimal requirements. The entire community is created and managed for a lightweight code hosting solution written in the Go language. As a self-hosting Git service, it is perfect for small business units since it is easy to use, simple, customizable, and demands minimal resources with an easy upgrade process.

It integrates well with other project management tools and tools like Docker, Vagrant, etc.

Key Features:

  • Executes anywhere on any platform, like Windows, Linux, macOS, etc.
  • CSV support, deploy tokens, third-party integration
  • Easy to install and light in weight
  • Inbuilt issue tracking through Pull Requests and Issues
  • Supports various authentication approaches, like OAuth2, LDAP
  • Squash merging, rebase merging, Pull-merge requests, etc.

6. CloudBees

As an enterprise software delivery platform, CloudBees is a renowned GitHub alternative that provides a complete set of DevOps solutions for streamlining development workflows. It helps you switch from a jumbled, disconnected DevOps to an accessible, repeatable production roadmap.

It offers self-service capabilities, which developers can use to showcase innovative results and release faster releases. It also provides easy and effective feature management with faster progression, delivery, and measurement.

Key Features:

  • Robust security and compliance administration
  • There is less need to rewrite scripts, create builds, and fix bugs
  • Effective monitoring and detailed analytics through integrated dashboards
  • Robust security management with audit logs and reports
  • Integrated CI/CD pipelines for faster and automated application deployment
  • Seamless collaboration between teams

7. Launchpad

As a free and open-source tool, Launchpad is one of the popular alternatives to GitHub. It is perfect for collaborating code and project management. It is a collaboration and hosting tool with practical bug-tracking competencies that facilitates accessible communication with a large developer community in different languages.

It becomes simpler for developers to share code, ideas, and translations within different projects. Developers can transmit bulk emails based on various criteria. It comes out as a comprehensive answer to all queries.

Key Features:

  • Link generation between team branches and bugs
  • Code hosting with Bazaar and Git
  • Security is achieved through private code branches, teams, PPAs, etc.
  • Widely leveraged by the Ubuntu community
  • Email notification, sharing of bug reports
  • Complete bug tracking system
  • Easy integration with bug-tracking tools like JIRA, Bugzilla, etc.
  • Support for multiple version control systems

8. GitBucket

GitBucket is an open-source Git platform on JVM that is ideal for hosting source code. It provides a great deal of extensibility, facilitating developers’ easy and better code management with fewer troubles. Installing it is easy. It is compatible with GitHub API and powered by Scala. It is accessible under Apache License version 2.0. It offers public/private Git repositories, and it has an activity timeline with email notifications.

Key Features:

  • Effective documentation and Wiki
  • Plug-in system
  • Pull Requests
  • Issue tracker
  • Repository Viewer

9. AWS CodeCommit

AWS CodeCommit is one of the key GitHub alternatives that offers a comprehensive version control system fit for AWS users and non-AWS users. It extends effective scalability and has no limits on cloud-based storage size capabilities. It hosts private code repositories of your projects securely with proper encryption policies.

It integrates seamlessly with AWS CLI, SDK, and management console, lessening the need to operate your own source control system.

Key Features:

  • Easy transfer of files with SSH or HTTPS
  • Promotes collaborative software development
  • Facility to create multiple repositories
  • Sending notifications and creation of HTTP webhooks
  • Security control with multi-factor authentication, AWS encryption, AWS CloudTrail
  • Competence in managing large repositories with huge files

10. Apache Allura

Apache Allura is a popular, open-source, free tool for source code repository management. As a self-hosted tool, it also looks at managing documents, discussions, blogs, and other reports of either a single or multiple projects. It is flexible and extensible since it simplifies the code implementation process with the help of syntaxes to avoid typing issues. There are forums through which experienced users can hear your queries and reply to them through emails.

Key Features:

  • Seamless management of multiple projects
  • Advanced search syntax for quicker availability
  • Distributed development model
  • Code reviews for better codebase quality
  • Offers Wiki for document management
  • Decentralized data storage architecture

11. Codegiant

Codegiant includes robust tools for agile project management. As a comprehensive platform, it is meant to be a single platform for project management that intuitively tracks issues. It makes the entire development platform simple with easy-to-use features. There is an inbuilt store that only the pipeline can access.

It includes robust and practical tools for agile project management that make the entire user experience memorable.

Key Features:

  • Issue tracking
  • Serverless architecture
  • Issue tracker with Kanban or Scrum boards
  • Active Sprint work boards
  • Easily navigable with faster UI/UX
  • Real-time logs to check for code failure

GitHub Alternatives: The Wrap-up

The continual advancement of technology has leveraged the usage of multiple GitHub alternatives, as detailed above. But there are certainly significant factors that must be kept in mind as you finalize your decision: project size, team requirements, timeline management, pricing structure, budgeted cost, community support, collaboration features, support for Git/SVN version control systems, ease of use, seamless third-party integration, robust security features, data visualization, and timeline management.

As you choose the best alternative to GitHub, you must be cautious about its features and adherence to your requirements since version control and source code management are critical project segments. Hence, a proper check must be made before finalization. It also depends on what you are looking for in a GitHub alternative.

If you need a user-friendly platform with smooth collaboration, GitLab is recommended. Bitbucket is a secure platform. SourceForge is a tool with good community support. If you work with Ubuntu-based projects, Launchpad is preferred.

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