Signed, sealed, delivered

“GitHub of packages” Bintray opens public beta

Elliot Bentley

Creators of binary management tool Artifactory unveil new online binary database incorporating GitHub’s social aspects.

The creators of binary management tool Artifactory have opened
the public beta of a new online binary database incorporating
GitHub’s social aspects. Having been in private beta for three
weeks, the unfortunately-named Bintray will today open its doors to the
general public.

Bintray is part software distribution platform and part social
network, jFrog Chief Architect Fred Simon and CTO Yoav Landman told
JAXenter. It promises not only an easy way to publish and discover
useful software, but also another important aspect of developers’
digital profiles to go alongside Twitter, Google+ and GitHub

Each package uploaded has a profile page, listing standard
information such as available downloads and relevant websites and
bug trackers, but also reviews from the community and the option to
watch for future updates. User profiles are standard listings of
active projects and external web presences, but the addition of
organisations as a separate profile type makes far more sense than
GitHub’s one-size-fits-all approach.

Speaking of GitHub: while its influence on Bintray is obvious,
the two are not competing for identical markets. Bintray is
designed for stable, packaged software, its social aspects in
sharing and reviewing packages rather than creating them.

“While GitHub manages source control, Bintray is the only platform
that directly deals with software releases and provides a complete
solution for managing, publishing and delivering binaries of new
software versions all the way to end users,” says Landman.

“In fact, Bintray integrates with your GitHub projects and allows
you to create software packages in Bintray from your existing
GitHub repositories, including linking to release notes managed in

Simon says that existing directories lack information about the
people and projects behind them, and that Bintray introduces a new
human aspect that Artifactory hopes will plug an obvious gap in the

Another key feature of Bintray is its automated index generation of
Maven, Debian and RPM packages. “Bintray takes care of the tedious
parts of publishing it, making your binaries easily available to
end users,” says Landman. “Automation and good integration with
tools that developers are already using, together with an easy to
use management web interface support this very streamlined

As you might expect, Bintray integrates well with jFrog’s flagship
binary management software Artifactory, allowing artifacts to be
published directly to Bintray “in just a push of a button”. Bintray
will be free for open source projects, but Simon says that
commercial software will require a yet-undetermined fee.

As the public beta opens, it will be interesting to see if Bintray
fills a viable niche. Landman says existing feedback has been
positive: “People are telling us they have been waiting for
this type of solution for a long time.”

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