7 Open Source Forge Platforms That Facilitate Collaborative Software Development

Collaborative software development is a model that is generally used in development of free software whose focus is on public availability. Though the model is well matured over the internet after the success of Linux kernel development, the model can be used in a closed intranet environment encouraging the culture collaborative software development in a IT company. The basic idea being the source code made available to everyone in a company and everyone is encouraged to contribute for the development of the software usually via the moderator.


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There are many forge platforms aggregates a set of applications with integrated Web interfaces and provide an ability to host multiple independent projects. Software developers in a company can register as contributors to the hosted projects can then use the various project management tools, and software development tools to contribute to the project. Here are the seven popular open source forge platforms available.

1. KForge

KForge is free and open source project hosting software. KForge integrates a variety of common applications with a flexible and robust project management and access control mechanism. Project services include version control systems (e.g. Git, Mercurial, Subversion); project frameworks with mechanisms to plan and track work (e.g. Trac); wikis and mailing lists (e.g. MoinMoin, Mailman); and content management systems and blogs (e.g. Joomla, WordPress).

More info here.

2. FusionForge

FusionForge is a free software descendant of the web-based project-management and collaboration software originally created for SourceForge and later distributed as Gforge. Fusionforge is the new name for the continuation of the free/opensource version of GForge. FusionForge has tools to help your team collaborate, like message forums and mailing lists; tools to create and control access to Source Code Management repositories like CVS and Subversion. FusionForge automatically creates a repository and controls access to it depending on the role settings of the project.

More info here.

3. LibreSource

LibreSource is an Open Source web portal, gathering in one place all the necessary tools to share and communicate within your project team.  Particularly adapted for software development, community management and web publishing, LibreSource aims at facilitating the coordination of collaborative projects and reducing their cost.

More info here.

4. Gitorious

Gitorious provides open source infrastructure for hosting open source projects that use Git. The central entity in Gitorious is the project, which contains one or more top-level repositories and any repositories managed by the project’s contributors.
This allows you, as a project administrator, to keep an eye on what people are working on in their individual clones of your repositories. It also lets you merge or provide feedback on their contributions.

More info here.

5. Savane

Savane is a Web-based Libre Software hosting system. It includes issue tracking (bugs, tasks, support, news and documentation), project member management by roles and individual account maintenance.

More info here.

6. Redmine

Redmine is a flexible project management web application. It is a Open Source forge platfform that help in  hosting multiple projects with flexible role based access control, issue tracking system, Gantt chart , news, documents & files management , feeds & email notifications, per project wiki and much more.

More info here.

7. Launchpad

Free open source project hosting collaborative platform that provide Bug tracking, Code hosting using Bazaar, Code reviews, Ubuntu package building and hosting, Translations, Mailing lists and many other features that are essential for collaborative software development.

More info here.

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  1. David says:

    To collaborate with my partners and share confidential infromation I use Sironta ( http://www.sironta.com ).

    It’s P2P, so confidential docs are only on my PC, not on an external server. It has Open Office embedded so you can work on the documents even if you are offline and synchronize with your partners once you reach the net.

    It’s the first software I have seen where I can share, edit or create files of any type and any size, without limitations, restrictions or information leakage.

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