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03 June 2011, 12:32

Report: GitHub more popular than SourceForge and Google Code

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GitHub Logo GitHub has announced that it is now the most popular open source software forge, surpassing Google Code, SourceForge and Microsoft's CodePlex. According to a post on the GitHub blog, the latest numbers come from Stephen O'Grady of tech analyst firm RedMonk working with open source specialist Black Duck Software.

O'Grady says that RedMonk and Black Duck Software examined the total number of commits from January through May 2011 and found that GitHub had over a million commits (1,153,059) followed by SourceForge (624,989), Google Code (287,901) and CodePlex (49,839).

The analyst also looked at the popularity of languages based on the commits made across forges in each language. C++ came out top with 362,077 commits, followed by Java (335,992), Python (296,896), C (264,468), JavaScript (251,557), Ruby (234,980), PHP (154,250), C# (125,848) and Perl (89,720).

Broken down by forge, the language statistics reveal how some forges attract users of particular languages.

Zoom Language popularity by forge
Source: RedMonk

GitHub is most popular for Ruby, Python and JavaScript users, while SourceForge tends to attract C++, Java and C users. GoogleCode sits in the middle, with Java, C++ and Python, and Codeplex, unsurprisingly as it is a Microsoft-run forge, attracts C# developers along with those using JavaScript and C.

Further information can be found in a blog post by O'Grady and in the presentation slides provided on SlideShare. GitHub is a client of RedMonk.

Founded in 2007 and launched in February 2008, San Francisco-based GitHub provides hosted repositories for Git, the distributed revision control system developed by Linus Torvalds, enhanced with its own web front-end and tools. GitHub has become one of the most active venues for open source developers to share, discuss and develop their code, and has built on Git's ability to allow developers to clone a code repository and work with the code without having to coordinate pushing changes back.

The site makes its money from paid plans for individuals and organisations that want their repositories hosted privately. The service is free for open source projects which will have access to unlimited public repositories and public collaborators. GitHub also hosts the CodeConf conference, which took place in April of this year and focused on social coding, as well as the recently announced PyCodeConf 2011 conference focused on the Python programming language.

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