Github, Gitlab, or something else?

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Re: Github, Gitlab, or something else?

Post by athenian200 » 2020-07-02, 13:25

New Tobin Paradigm wrote:
2020-07-02, 09:36
I think whatever is offered should be the best solution available. The absolute junk offered as possibilities in this thread shows a real lack of the practical experence in project management and requirements needed to start transitioning to independent infrastructure. I also think that dumping github completely is a mistake and merely the sole reliance is what should be changed.

Github should be retained as a mirror (and bitbucket and gitlab dot com should also be setup for redundancy) but work should be shifted to a local solution. Something good and supported and most of all exploitable for our needs ie bending whatever it is to support our collective needs.

As I indicated, I am also searching for just a solution for BinOC's needs and if successful in the endevor maybe it will be what is needed collectively and maybe not but what shouldn't happen is a rush job to scramble to change to something unsustainable.

We shall see.
Multiple mirrors sounds like a good idea. I'll be the first one to admit that I don't have enough experience in project management and requirements to pick an alternative and say "I'm 100% sure that's what we should go with." The approach I'm hoping we take with this is staying on GitHub (and possibly mirroring to GitLab and SourceForge) while we test various alternatives and see what works out best for us. I don't think we're in a position now to know ahead of time what the best solution is, and I am hoping we don't have to rush this.

I mean, I've taken a serious look at the most likely alternative everyone is considering, a self-hosted GitLab instance, and if I'm being honest I think it's bad enough that I'm hoping we stay on GitHub if that's our only other choice. GitHub does have a desktop client of some kind (though it is Electron), and besides, one could easily take the perspective that if it comes down to us using Firefox or Chromium to do development because we're missing critical web features, then we have bigger problems than the indignity of using an alternate browser to access GitHub.

This decision absolutely will affect our project for a long time to come, and we shouldn't rush into anything or make a hasty decision given that we have never worked with self-hosted forge software before. This is new territory for us all. One reason why I keep saying "if we switch from GitHub," is because I'm not yet convinced we have a better plan than just using GitHub. It's also why I was saying I think we should choose the best alternative, kept suggesting alternatives, and linked an article discussing forge software as a concept to get people researching the topic and debating alternatives rather than trying to settle on one thing.

The only thing I can offer is that possibly we're looking at this the wrong way. So far we've been trying to find one suite that offers everything via a web interface because that's what we've been accustomed to. But we could also shift to a different workflow, and just move our issue and tracking system off GitHub. We could turn off the ability to make issues/comments on our repo, continue using GitHub for other functions, and move all our existing issues into an independent bug tracking system. We have all the issues separate from the PRs for a good reason, and that fact might come in handy now. Maybe we could make the move in stages, focusing on migrating our issues and bug tracking to a different system first (which is a big job in and of itself), but continue using GitHub as usual for everything else as we replace pieces of what we use it for with more robust alternatives.

Another idea would be to spend some time researching the workflow and software used by other projects of our size and trying to make a list of best practices and features we want our solution to have so we can narrow things down. We kinda started this discussion with no clear parameters, and we all came at it from different directions. Some people think we just need something self-hosted and it doesn't matter what it is, some people think we need a self-hosted clone of GitHub that isn't GitHub, and some of us are worried about long-term maintainability and how far we can scale the infrastructure. We know what we don't want, but the question is, what is it we DO want?
Last edited by athenian200 on 2020-07-02, 13:34, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Github, Gitlab, or something else?

Post by Lunokhod » 2020-07-02, 13:29

Sourceforge was an alternative I considered too, but it also wanted to publish your email address online for the repo owner - probably not an issue here though. The advantage of Gitlab (not as a self hosted instance) was that US sites like GitHub and Sourceforge aren't available in countries on the US sanction list, which you may not care about observing if you aren't in the US. The Artix repos are on Gitea. There are some differences between the Arch repos, whether that is down to how they are set up or some intrinsic limitation. Firstly the Arch repos are a git repo tree in their entirety, while the Artix repos are a bunch of individual repos one per package. Also there is no support for Savannah (svn) which is available on GitHub. There are a few things you can do with svn to clone single files or directories that you can't do with git. I remain generally happy with GitHub for my use, the outdated browser warning is a bit odd for a browser developed on there though! Surely it would benefit both GitHub and Pale Moon if the two remained compatible, regardless of where the code is hosted.

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Re: Github, Gitlab, or something else?

Post by Moonchild » 2020-07-02, 14:04

athenian200 wrote:
2020-07-02, 13:25
if it comes down to us using Firefox or Chromium to do development because we're missing critical web features, then we have bigger problems than the indignity of using an alternate browser to access GitHub.
That's totally the wrong way to look at it. "critical web features" aren't measured by what one company decides to do on one website, no matter how big or important it is. If you reason that way then we may as well pack up and leave yesterday, because we will never meet ALL web applications' requirements ALL the time, EVERYWHERE. Oh but hey guess what, neither does Chrome.
The problem is that GitHub is rapidly becoming something you can only use (1) from Chrome, on (2) a mid-high end machine, using (3) a privacy-nightmare SSO.
For a forge application that is ridiculous. It is supposed to be an organizational tool, not some complex entangled SaaS mess.

So far I'm looking at self-hosted GitLab Enterprise of a version WE control with feature requirements WE control as a prime alternative.
My other research so far:
  • Phabricator: Fails to meet our needs. Isn't a forge. FAIL
  • GitPrep: Wholly incomplete, had barely any development to fix outstanding issues for years, can't be secured (wiki is open to the world, etc.), and is written in a language none of us know (perl), so can't be maintained ourselves. Oh and it can only use sqlite as a db :P FAIL
  • Apache's Allura: A pythonic mess running on gunicorn and only really suitable to run on Ubuntu or as a Docker image. Serious concerns about stability there, and very unlikely to be scaleable. UNLIKELY
  • Sourcehut: alpha stage. Misses web-based submission/review of patches, misses organizations/groups, doesn't allow anything but SSH-pubkey auth... FAIL
  • Gitea: Looks promising at first glance. the demo is fast and seems to be a complete-ish Github-alike. Same problem as GitPrep in terms of being written in a language we don't know, but at least what we get seems to be complete. POTENTIAL
  • Gitlab: Is a full Github alternative including full importing of what is on GitHub, but seems to have the exact same focus issues as GitHub in what they aim for and remain a moving target re: browser support, so at the very least the hosted solution at the whim of their devs is definitely out. POTENTIAL
  • Trac: I'm not sure if their set way of dealing with patches and issues is flexible enough for our use. It seems extremely rigid. UNLIKELY
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Re: Github, Gitlab, or something else?

Post by athenian200 » 2020-07-02, 15:55

Moonchild wrote:
2020-07-02, 14:04
So far I'm looking at self-hosted GitLab Enterprise of a version WE control with feature requirements WE control as a prime alternative.
If paid options are on the table, then I guess we could look at RhodeCode as well...

https://code.rhodecode.com/

And the only other option I can think of beyond that is Redmine.

https://www.redmine.org/

GitHub itself has a self-hosted enterprise option as well, though it's not the cheapest and you probably considered that already.
[*]Gitea: Looks promising at first glance. the demo is fast and seems to be a complete-ish Github-alike. Same problem as GitPrep in terms of being written in a language we don't know, but at least what we get seems to be complete. POTENTIAL
[*]Gitlab: Is a full Github alternative including full importing of what is on GitHub, but seems to have the exact same focus issues as GitHub in what they aim for and remain a moving target re: browser support, so at the very least the hosted solution at the whim of their devs is definitely out. POTENTIAL
I was afraid it would come down to those two.

If we have to choose between those two then... Gitea. At least with Gitea there's no learning curve migrating from GitHub, and if we have to go with a fairly popular option to get something fleshed out enough to have all the features we need, I want it to be as fast as possible and as similar to GitHub as possible. That means Gitea. At least we're talking fast and familiar with that. Plus, seems like it's logical to avoid a paid option if Gitea is free and good enough.
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Re: Github, Gitlab, or something else?

Post by New Tobin Paradigm » 2020-07-02, 16:44

What I am looking at is called Pagure.
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Re: Github, Gitlab, or something else?

Post by athenian200 » 2020-07-02, 22:10

New Tobin Paradigm wrote:
2020-07-02, 16:44
What I am looking at is called Pagure.
I've never heard of this, but I tried looking up some more info about it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=29Ed9OOxkhU

If everything I'm hearing in this video is true, then you've done a great job hunting this down.

1. It's already being used by Fedora and CentOS, and the FSF has plans to switch from Savannah to Pagure. That means it will be actively developed by people who basically make the standards in the open source/free software community.

2. It looks very close to GitHub in terms of interface.

3. It's written in Python, but it's not as slow as something like Allura.

4. It supports themes and customization.

5. It can accept pull requests from GitHub and other sources, and it generally supports decentralized/federated development.

6. Multiple Linux distributions will be adding it to their repos soon, which may be the point at which people start noticing it.

My impression is that if you're looking for a GitLab alternative that's aligned with a more open source development philosophy, this could very well be it. This is basically what I was looking for, but I thought it didn't exist and the closest I could find was stuff like Allura and Redmine. It seems like for whatever reason this is a very well-kept secret because it was really only talked about in Fedora Magazine or something, and no one reads that. They haven't really gotten the word out yet, and this video looks like an attempt to make people more aware of it from just a few months ago.

Somehow I kinda figured you would be the one to find the best solution. If it were up to me, I probably would have wound up spending a month or two messing around with a Redmine instance and associated plugins until I got something usable, since I probably would have quickly gotten frustrated with how disjointed Phabricator is and found Allura to be too sluggish after evaluating them closer, and wound up using something self-hosted with a lot of documentation that potentially includes everything but the kitchen sink.
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Re: Github, Gitlab, or something else?

Post by New Tobin Paradigm » 2020-07-03, 01:12

We will see how much I can abuse it.. Likely can get it down to very little javascript in the themes if Kudo is correct. Also, a feature is being planned that will allow one Pagure instance to "subscribe" to repos from other Pagure instances. If they pull it off it could be VERY handy for the future.
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Re: Github, Gitlab, or something else?

Post by Moonchild » 2020-07-03, 11:17

athenian200 wrote:
2020-07-02, 15:55
I was afraid it would come down to those two.
I did say that was my personal research SO FAR. It's those two from the list I have put time in to check out (aside from the other stuff I'm doing and probably looking at another shoulder treatment of some kind, so yeah, fun fun)
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Re: Github, Gitlab, or something else?

Post by Free Bird » 2020-07-03, 22:02

Azure DevOps is not an acceptable option either, is it? I'm just asking to be sure.

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Re: Github, Gitlab, or something else?

Post by bgstack15 » 2020-07-04, 03:07

And paid options: Have you looked at Bitbucket? I personally don't like it, but maybe it will fit your needs.

Gitlab certainly powers some large projects, larger than this UXP set of projects: think Debian, KDE, Gnome, and soon to be Fedora. (More listed at https://frontpagelinux.com/news/linux-p ... -issue-13/)

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Re: Github, Gitlab, or something else?

Post by New Tobin Paradigm » 2020-07-04, 03:11

You guys really are missing the damned point aren't you. Gitlab doesn't even FULLY FUNCTION in our browsers. Might as well stay on GitHub at that rate. Same goes with Bitbucket (which has a terrible UX) and we ain't gonna pay money for these centralized Google-allied or Google-catered services that don't even run properly in the browser or in the case of gitlab some horseshit ruby on rails abomination that requires essentially bare metal server specs if not using the main hosted service.

Also, some other useless suggestions like trac or whatever else this thread has produced. Really seems like you guys are either functionally retarded or just talking out of your ass regurgitating results from a Google Search.

MAYBE what you should do is sit back and see what we (or I) can come up with.
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Re: Github, Gitlab, or something else?

Post by athenian200 » 2020-07-04, 04:03

Free Bird wrote:
2020-07-03, 22:02
Azure DevOps is not an acceptable option either, is it? I'm just asking to be sure.
That was actually the first one that came to mind for me. My Dad is pushing me to learn Azure and he's been talking about giving me a setup where I can have all the tools for that, including DevOps. That's still Microsoft's Cadillac option for people hosting stuff on-premises that want more control, but it's the most expensive software package for this kind of thing you can get, and I didn't suggest it because their stuff is a bit pricey for non-profits, so I figured it was off the table. But yeah, it's probably one of the best options out there if you have money to throw at the problem and you're comfortable working with Microsoft. If GitLab didn't offer an on-premises option, I can imagine MC and a lot of others in the same boat grudgingly considering GitHub Enterprise and/or Azure DevOps as the primary choice. Whatever the software is, once you have it on premises, you can block updates and make sure new features never enter into the mix. Maybe even modify the HTML it serves up to rip out the new web stuff if it got in there, or at the very least freeze the version of web stuff it uses as a stationary target that we can ensure compatibility with. That's the appeal of on-premises for us. We need something that's in our hands and not able to randomly demand new browser capabilities one day.

Basically, with Microsoft, here's how I think it all fits together, as of right now...

GitHub (free)
GitHub Enterprise (mid tier)
Azure DevOps Server (high tier)

So GitHub isn't supposed to be their best offering, it's just supposed to be the free offering that gives you a taste of what you can get if you actually start getting into Azure and eventually their on-premises options when you need real security. Sort of like how Skype is the free offering that's supposed to get people into Teams later. These services are not meant to be the best they have, they constitute a free tier compared with their enterprise offerings which are a lot better.
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Re: Github, Gitlab, or something else?

Post by Moonchild » 2020-07-04, 10:28

New Tobin Paradigm wrote:
2020-07-04, 03:11
Also, some other useless suggestions like trac or whatever else this thread has produced. Really seems like you guys are
Dude, calm down.
New Tobin Paradigm wrote:
2020-07-04, 03:11
MAYBE what you should do is sit back and see what we (or I) can come up with.
Then you're missing the whole point of me starting this topic. I want to have a look at ALL the options, not just what you've apparently set your mind to and already decided is going to be "the" solution to our growing problem. I want options; this will impact our project in a major way. Before yesterday I'd never even heard of what you're looking into...
New Tobin Paradigm wrote:
2020-07-04, 03:11
Gitlab doesn't even FULLY FUNCTION in our browsers.
I haven't seen any broken functionality when I looked at gitlab-ee 13.1.1 in a VM a couple days back. We had some issues before, but that functionality it relied on has since been added to UXP.
Can you let me know what's broken?
Free Bird wrote:
2020-07-03, 22:02
Azure DevOps is not an acceptable option either, is it?
Azure DevOps is enterprise services wrapping around core development organisation. We don't need it, and probably can't afford it, anyway.

Paid options are fine to look at but keep in mind it needs to fit in a small budget. Self-hosting anything will also cost money for a server, after all. Paid services however MUST have the promise, because of that, that they aren't going to fuck us over a year or maybe 2 down the line by switching to some Google-centric client requirements.
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Re: Github, Gitlab, or something else?

Post by moonbat » 2020-07-04, 10:58

Moonchild wrote:
2020-07-04, 10:28
Paid services however MUST have the promise, because of that, that they aren't going to fuck us over a year or maybe 2 down the line by switching to some Google-centric client requirements.
That's really the gamble, isn't it :(
A few years ago no one could imagine Microsoft buying an open source hosting company like Github. In that sense a self hosted version may be better since it is something under your control.
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Re: Github, Gitlab, or something else?

Post by bgstack15 » 2020-07-04, 12:55

New Tobin Paradigm wrote:
2020-07-04, 03:11
Same goes with Bitbucket (which has a terrible UX)
I agree with you there. And have you ever tried to administer users in the "Cloud" instance of it?! It's very weak. But maybe it had features that would work for a small team.
Huh, Bitbucket's UX is probably the "Material design" that people don't like. That would explain a lot...

Choosing a forge is not easy, indeed. I'm sorry things have gotten so bad you feel that you now have to do it to protect yourself and your projects. I remember when Github because too distasteful for me (when M$ bought them 2 years ago now). I was willing to just move to gitlab, but none of my works are as substantial as UXP+suite.

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Re: Github, Gitlab, or something else?

Post by Moonchild » 2020-07-04, 13:22

I think bitbucket even as a backup is a non-starter. Atlassian has proven time and again they are not listening to their clients, let alone FOSS developers (see also: SourceTree's redesign) who actualy have to -work with- what they create.
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Re: Github, Gitlab, or something else?

Post by New Tobin Paradigm » 2020-07-04, 13:30

It is just that this has been in the back of my mind for months now ever since Polymer v1 escaped YouTube.

It came forward for me in the past month and a half when GitHub just became broken as hell for me and I had to start using Chrome Edge to use Issues and PR parts of it and now this redesign breaking my muscle memory.

I am so sick of these Google-allied mega-corperations or Google them selves eating every site and service I use then crapping then back out onto the web as these inferior things with the same name.

The alternitive options being extremely limited is frustrating as all hell because while many started out with a lot of potential they all fell by the wayside in the past decade and the few that didn't are wholey not what is needed or just followed suit.

So it just becomes harder.

Btw, I was on GitLab recently submitting a pr for Moonbat's extension he was working on and on the issues and pr parts bits weren't loading properly, the UX was garbage to use, and I didn't enjoy the experience at all. So all I can say on that front is it is total junk that doesn't work properly.

I have high hopes for Pagure tho it is just a matter of getting it functioning and trying to reskin it to be more GitHub-like. If it doesn't pan out though I dunno what I will do but I will tell you that I won't use GitLab period. I won't do it, I'll stay on GitHub via Edge until WebComponents are done and mirror before I use an even more inferior solution.

Also, there is a very good reason I haven't mentioned it until now and that is that I haven't yet tried to deploy or done any extensive proding of it but I have known about it for a while now because I have been looking for sometime for alternitives a lot longer.

It has been clear that Microsoft wouldn't be able to keep their hands off of GitHub forever and they would ruin it the same way they ruined Skype and all their products plus going Chrome + a web service, well no shocker there really.

As for why I hadn't brought this up specifically before well I thought I would have a bit more time before you got to the same point I did a few months ago and I'd already have had the time to come up with a replacement and had it all pretty much worked out. That was the plan anyway so there wouldn't be this scramble or this conflict. I didn't count on the fact that you'd be at this point right now or that I specifically would be bypassed in favor of this thread. Which is also why I watched for several posts before jumping in to see what they would suggest which turns out to be exactly what I expected them to suggest. Which are all the non-workable possibilities I already rejected in my search.

So I posted the one I been considering to head them off and hopefully prevent you from choosing something from their suggestions but they kept mindlessly suggesting anyway. So I posted what I did and you posted what you did and now there is this post. So I hope that answers your question.
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Re: Github, Gitlab, or something else?

Post by Moonchild » 2020-07-04, 21:30

New Tobin Paradigm wrote:
2020-07-04, 13:30
As for why I hadn't brought this up specifically before well I thought I would have a bit more time before you got to the same point I did a few months ago and I'd already have had the time to come up with a replacement and had it all pretty much worked out. That was the plan anyway so there wouldn't be this scramble or this conflict.
Well let's just say that it's good this happened because I really don't like being forced into one of several options because the one option has had prepwork done and having all ready and polished. Why? because I think that's not properly evaluating things, not making a fair comparison between options, and is pushing hard for an option that might be more polished but less fitting for what I would prefer or what fits the projects best. It's avoiding "conflict" (or rather weighing several options) by strong-arming one direction and one solution. It's introducing a "lazy option" because it's ready to be used; but I'd rather use the "best fitting option" instead.

I'm also surprised you're rooting for this while you've always said (and I agree with) that Python shouldn't be used for this kind of large application work... :|
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Re: Github, Gitlab, or something else?

Post by Moonchild » 2020-07-04, 23:24

I've had another look at gitlab-ee in a VM on the build server, and even compared to the public instance of gitlab.com (since I happen to have an account there from f-droid stuff 6 years ago), and there simply seems to be a serious problem with performance. Even tossing 16GB of ram and 8 cores at it, there's long delays between action and response for anything done. On their hosted infra there are similar delays. I'm guessing it has become too much of a behemoth @ 1.7 GB installed size and with all sorts of CI/CD integration and stuff built in we don't need. 4GB is the absolute minimum it wants for RAM on a bare-bones system, so that will cost if hosted in a VPS.

Functionality-wise, I haven't seen anything broken, at all -- in fact it has a few nice advancements over github like being able to mark sensitive bugs restricted to reported and devs, etc. The UI is something I could learn to use even if not pretty and subject to unnecessary BS like fading in comments and such, so not necessarily a write-off because of that for me. But that performance bottleneck is just... no.
I know very little about Ruby as a language; what is its prime usage target? Is it as much of a mismatch as I think it is?
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Re: Github, Gitlab, or something else?

Post by New Tobin Paradigm » 2020-07-05, 04:32

And that seems to be the best prospect I have found so far. The only upside to a python solution like this is it has largely first party support for a Fedora-based distro. All the dependencies are there and assuming I can get Kudo off his ass and show me how to set it up then take that and set it up properly and get in there and make it not look like a Fedora service.. It should be good. I just have high hopes for it and it seems like it doesn't try and do more than it needs to.

It may not pan out but if it does, it does. It doesn't require a virtualenv or vagrant or too crazy of a setup and it has switches to store data where I want it I am told. Deff better than the incomplete or impossible alternatives even if it is python.
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- Mars will never be free until the sands run red with Earther blood! -

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