As tough as Rhodium

Spotlight on: RhodeCode, enterprise-grade source control management

Elliot Bentley

The open source GitHub alternative goes commercial with an “invincible” managed hosting service.

With Google Code and Sourceforge having conceded the crown to GitHub, surprisingly few new challengers have risen to counter the Octocat’s dominance.

One alternative gaining traction in the enterprise world is RhodeCode, a Git and Mercurial-based source control management software package from Berlin-based developers Sebastian Kreutzberger and Marcin Kuzminski.

Having released the first version 2010, the pair only recognised the phenomenal success of their open-source software when they began to receive support requests from companies as large as Bank of America and game engine developers Unity.

RhodeCode began as a purely self-hosted, open source product like GitLab, but stood out by appealing to an audience beyond developers. “In interviewing we learned whole departments are using RhodeCode,” Kreutzberger told GigaOM. “Especially legal departments, because they could work on the files with versioning, comments on changes and so on.”

Having now racked up over 150,000 installations in three years, RhodeCode has recently been relaunched as a managed hosting service, with an optional self-hosted version called RhodeCode Enterprise.

Unlike GitHub, which has thrived with a “social” culture of openness and public pull requests, RhodeCode is aimed squarely at the enterprise market and marketed as having “invincible privacy” – helped by the fact that the company’s servers are in Germany.

Another difference is that the managed hosting solution doesn’t even have a free tier – your only choice is to self-host RhodeCode Enterprise, and even then more than 20 users will cost $29/month (although this is waived for public open source projects) .

While it may never quite match GitHub’s success, RhodeCode at least proves there’s still plenty of space for an alternative.

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