GitLab asks customers to help it open source a raft of features

Gitlab Logo
Gitlab Logo

GitLab is open sourcing 18 features that were previously only available to its paying users, after CEO Sid Sijbrandij apparently personally audited all the Dev-X-Ops platform’s pricing tiers.

The newly opened up features range across the development lifecycle, from Plan and Create, through Verify, Package, Release, Configure and Defend.

But if you’re itching to get your hands on the features, there’s a catch – the company would like you to help out with the hands-on labour of actually delivering them.

Announcing the move in a blog, Sijbrandij said feature bonanza was prompted by its “Buyer-Based Open Core” model, under which “the likely type of buyer determines what features go in what tier”. The vendor has four tiers – core/free, starter/bronze, premium/silver and ultimate/gold –  and takes the position that “if a feature can be moved down, do it quickly”.

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Unfortunately, according to Sijbrandij, “somewhere along the way, we failed to do an audit of many existing features.”

So, in case you were wondering where Sijbrandij, has been recently, he explains, “That’s what I did last month, and now I’m excited to share that after personally reviewing all features in each of our tiers we are open sourcing an unprecedented number of GitLab features.”

These would “empower the community to collaborate more robustly and to take our single tool for the DevOps lifecycle to the next level.”

And the first thing the community can collaborate on is actually delivering the newly open sourced features

As Sijbrandij wrote, “The work to move the actual code to the open source part of the codebase is defined in issues that are linked from this blog post. These issues will go into the backlog for each of the respective product development teams and will be prioritized against new feature development”.

So, he continued, “If having this functionality in Core/Free is important to you, we invite you to contribute yourself to speed up the process. We’re not just giving you permission to help us move this code – we’re asking you to help us move it.”

As Sijbrandij said, the targeted features range across the platform. There are four in the Plan category, including service desk, and three in Create, including design management. One feature, code quality, is being open sourced in Verify.

GitLab’s package managers for Conan, Maven, NPM and NuGet are all on the open source to -do list.

The release category has four features going open source, including canary deployments, incremental rollout, feature flags and deploy boards, all of which should give release managers plenty more to play with.

In Configure, support for multiple Kubernetes clusters is set to be opened up, while the same applies for network policies for container network security in Defend.

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