Open Source Project Hosting Options- Should we move?

Currently the source code repository and file downloads for mojoPortal are hosted on Novell Forge. Several years ago I chose Novell Forge because they were offering Subversion aka svn repositories and at the time SourceForge was limited to cvs. Over time my satisfaction with Novell Forge has declined and now I am considering whether to move the project to a different provider. The current options to consider are:

1. Stay with Novell Forge, its been fairly reliable but there was a week long outage last year and currently I am not able to add a user to the project due to some issue in their system and when I send a message to the mailing list I get nothing but crickets chirping. Novell Forge seems almost abandonded and certainly a very low priority effort by Novell though I'm a big fan of Novell and their work with Mono and openSuse. I don't really blame Novell as it seems like providing this kind of infrastructure is a cost center with little if any benefit to their bottom line. The whole Novell Forge plan seems to be in flux maybe it will eventually settle down but if you look at the 2 newest news items on the old Novell Forge, they migrated everything to Media Wiki in 2006, so that site is here and now they seem to be in the throws of moving to yet another wiki engine here which you can only get to with a Novell login. Presumably there will be some benefit to it but it looks a lot like the current wiki and there wasn't much response on the mailing list when the new beta site was announced so it makes the impression on me that the Novell Forge community is not exactly a thriving one. Staying with Novell Forge would be the easiest choice in terms of effort but I don't seem to be getting any help adding a user to my project so staying may not be a viable option.

2. Google Code - I'm a big fan of Google and I wish it were an option but unfortunately the company that would do no evil has an agenda when it comes to open source licenses and does not offer Common Public License as an option so moving there would require a license change which is not something I'm inclined to do as it would require permission from all previous contributors. It also rubs me wrong that they have this agenda which would coerce me into changing my chosen license. I understand their goal of reducing the proliferation of open source licenses but their list is too short and leaves out established OSI approved licenses. No-one should have to change their license just to get project hosting.

3. CodePlex - Microsoft is putting a lot of effort into hosting open source projects and CodePlex seems to be gaining popularity in the .NET world. There might be some benefits to mojoPortal if it were a member of the CodePlex community, we are still very unknown compared to things like DotNetNuke which everyone knows about. I'd like to be able to consider Codeplex but they use Team Foundation I believe for source code. They have a client side utility called svnbridge that allows users to access the repository using svn and they are working on a server side svn bridge so no client bridge is needed. If that were ready today I'd seriously consider going with Codeplex but I'm less inclined at the moment because I don't want any difficulty checking out the code on linux and I really like svn and not sure I would like it as much if its not working the same in the back end as svn.

4. SourceForge - the first major player in open source project hosting and probably still the biggest. They have long since added svn to their list of services. They seem very committed to what they are doing and they seem to have a thriving community. This is the option I'm leaning towards. It would be a bit of work moving the code but it would probably be worth it in the long run.

Any thoughts or opinions?


UPDATE: Since posting this I did get a response from Cory Aitchison from Novell on the Novell Forge mailing list and he is helping me with the immediate problem of adding a user so for now I think we will stay with Novell Forge and see how things look after the new migration. In hindsight my comment about no reply except crickets chirping was probably not fair. I did get a response to the message I sent today and I fear it may have been my own fault that I did not get a response yesterday because I sent it from gmail but my message may have bounced because I'm registered on the list with my yahoo mail account. It all forwards to my gmail but I think I forgot yesterday that I needed to specify my Yahoo account in the from box. I applogise for that and thank Cory for his help.


A. Samarian

re: Open Source Project Hosting Options- Should we move?

Friday, August 31, 2007 12:39:17 PM

Hi Joe

Please forget Google because not access to IRAN and I have to migrate to another country and this is very hard for me.seems Google code seems that depened on politic sitiuations.CodePlex is not matured is a good for choose.


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