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We have already studied how you can use Git to manage versions of your software project. We have also shown you how you can use your InMotion Hosting server to host your own Git repository. Now, we will discuss why or why not use GitHub to host your remote repositories.

Reasons Why You Might Consider Using GitHub

Aside from providing a colorful, user-friendly history of your project, Github offers some extra benefits that may be important for some developers such as:

  • Community building
  • Free hosting
  • Project management features

We will discuss these in more detail below.

Community Building

A lot has been said about building communities around open-source software. GitHub is designed to encourage and support collaboration between developers, designers, and end users alike. An individual can even request help on their code from other members of the community.

It's Free

GitHub provides a great deal of services to you at no cost. You can open a personal plan for free and create as many repositories as you need. Essentially, this is free hosting for your code which you can share with others.

Though GitHub is free, you can upgrade if you want more options. For example, premium members get access to private repositories. This means no one can see your code as you're working on it.

Project Management

GitHub provides a wide variety of project management features for free. Once your project is hosted at GitHub, users can submit Issues which you can resolve and close. You can also set Milestones for your project. Though these features are all optional, they may help you plan and meet important deadlines for your project.

Reasons Why You Might Not Use GitHub

It's possible that GitHub is not a necessary tool for your project, especially if you already have space you can use on your hosting account. When choosing whether or not to use any tool, it's best to consider whether or not the tool adds significant value to your work. Even though GitHub is free to use, it would be a waste of time to set up an account and repositories if you're not going to use them.

Repositories are Public by Default

This means the default, free, personal account cannot create a private repository. Everything about your project, including log messages, commit history, and the code itself, will be publicly available to anyone. This also means that proprietary information or security-sensitive data cannot be shared safely. Private repositories are available, but they come at higher cost.

If your project meets any of the criteria above, and you are interested in using GitHub to host your code, proceed to our next article about creating your free GitHub account.

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