Big? GitHub Enterprise 2.5 thinks massive

GitHub is focusing on enterprises with the biggest dev teams to ward off challenges from GitLab and Bitbucket

Big? GitHub Enterprise 2.5 thinks massive

Keeping up its push to be an enterprise presence, GitHub has announced the latest version of the for-pay, enterprise edition of its code-hosting platform.

The company says GitHub Enterprise 2.5's focus is "companies operating at massive scale" -- enterprises with more than 10,000 developers and exponential year-over-year growth. The new toolset for GitHub Enterprise 2.5 helps large teams add new users, collaborate safely on large projects, and deal with GitHub-related performance issues that can crop up around such large projects.

Taming the thundering herds

The most prominent new feature for scale, clustering, allows GitHub Enterprise services to be deployed across multiple nodes. The various services that make up a GitHub deployment -- MySQL, Redis, ElasticSearch, Git, and so on -- can be scaled to meet enterprise-level demand. However, the documentation notes that "setting up a redundant and scalable cluster can be complex and requires careful planning," so this feature has to be set up with a GitHub Enterprise account representative.

GitHub also tackled the performance issues that can be experienced by teams at scale. Operations that cause major RAM and CPU loads, such as when many team members attempt to pull a branch at the same time, are now cached, which takes the sting out of what GitHub calls the "thundering herd" problem.

Enterprise 2.5 now has protected branches -- a feature that regular GitHub users already have. Repository administrators can disable code pushes to specific branches as a way to keep from being accidentally overwritten. The protected branches API is being rolled out as a preview and requires configuration on a per-repository basis.

Unrelenting demand

This release comes at a moment when GitHub is allegedly being pressured from within to deliver more enterprise-friendly products as long-standing competitors continue to up their game.

Open source alternative GitLab has raised its feature ante with performance-monitoring tools and a better search system. Atlassian has upgraded its Bitbucket code-hosting site to include many new enterprise-level features as well.

The loudest demand for certain features hasn't come from the enterprise side, but has been broadcast out in the open, as many A-list open source projects are pressuring GitHub to provide long-requested features.

A GitHub spokesperson told InfoWorld, "We are working on several of the initiatives discussed, and will look for proactive ways to engage with open source maintainers to continue to make GitHub a great experience for their communities."

Copyright © 2016 IDG Communications, Inc.

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