GitLab and GitHub are two of the most popular code repositories available today. They offer similar features but have different approaches to the services they provide. So, let’s compare GitLab and GitHub, looking at what they each offer, how they work, their best features, and what they’re best used for. 

If you’re torn between GitLab or GitHub, this guide will help you make an informed decision about which one will best suit your needs.

GitLab Vs. GitHub: What’s the Difference?

  • Fees.
  • Location.
  • Issue tracker.
  • Documentation.
  • Integration.
  • Authentication.
  • Community.
  • Workflow.
  • Backup.
  • Maintenance mode.
  • Installation.
  • Architecture and stability.

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GitLab Vs. GitHub: What Are They?

GitLab and GitHub are two of the most popular and widely used softwares for managing and sharing code. They’re both open-source, meaning anyone can use or modify either platform. 

Both GitLab and GitHub allow you to create repositories for your code, manage permissions, and collaborate with other developers on projects.


What Is GitLab?

GitLab adds plenty of depth to the DevOps process. You only need a single dashboard for everything you need to do. It is quickly becoming the platform of choice for huge organizations like Sony and NASA.


What Is GitHub?

While working on a project, developers may use GitHub to host their repositories online and interact with others on their teams. It just requires a desktop user interface or a web gateway for access.


GitLab vs. GitHub: What’s the Difference?

Despite the basic similarities, GitLab and GitHub are actually pretty different. Whereas GitLab is a complete solution for DevOps, GitHub is just one of many services that work together for the entire software to function.

Here’s how the two stack up, along with their free, premium, and ultimate plans



GitLab: GitLab limits its repository to its current web developers collaborating on the codes.

GitHub: GitHub is free to use and access through public codes on the internet.



GitLab: Despite the limits to the free plan, GitLab allows unlimited searches within your organization’s code repository, unlike GitHub.

GitHub: GitHub only allows internal repository location and searches with the premium plan.


Issue Tracker

GitLab: Users may link problems in the issue tracker to pull requests, which will be immediately closed.

GitHub: When one repository merges into another, the related issues in the issue tracker are closed.



GitLab: GitLab files are like language documentation in that they provide a handy search bar and a list of all documents necessary for the installation. The first thing you will see is a search box on the documents page. These documents provide documentation for GitLab, deployment tools, the GitLab installation tool, and integration. 

GitHub: On GitHub, guides are organized by platform, each addressing a different language or framework. There are also articles and how-to tutorials available for all users. You will also find an easily navigable help page and commonly asked questions.



GitLab: GitLab is completely integrated from the ground up using its own integration tools, which are constantly improving.

GitHub: GitHub doesn’t have an internal continuous integration tool. Instead, third-party platforms are necessary. Installing applications provides you the ease of access and control over the software. That way, you can have total control over your project.



GitLab: Any developer has the power to determine who has access to the repository.

GitHub: Access to the repository may be authorized and limited based on the user’s role.



GitLab: GitLab has a similarly vast community of developers. It holds community events that bring together contributors and open-source technologies to push innovation across industries.

GitHub: GitHubs large developer community is one of the biggest reasons it’s such a popular platform. It has millions of active users, making it an excellent resource for problem-solving and fresh ideas.



GitLab: GitLab enables internal repository management using DevOps over the web.

GitHub: GitHub boasts a platform for developing and storing projects. In addition, it offers practical features like task management, bug tracking, and others.



GitLab: GitLab provides better workflow tools. These methods differ in the increased functionality in feature lists, production results, development, environment, and release branches. 

Today, everyone uses GitLab Flow. Merge requests also help the GitLab process (MRS). Before code merged into the main project, MRS provided a mechanism for testing and evaluating it. GitLab Flow gives the user a broader overview of what the software can process at the moment.

GitHub: GitHub offers a simplified method for backups; pull requests improve the GitHub process 


Maintenance Mode

GitLab: GitLab features a maintenance mode that you can activate to prevent any external operations that might change its internal standing. The API, web UI, and Rails console are the three methods for activating maintenance mode.

Certain software does not have the ability to retain information when it’s undergoing maintenance. GitLab’s maintenance mode allows you to edit code without jeopardizing the project you’re working on.

GitHub: The GitHub Enterprise Server may be offline for maintenance and placed in a GitHub-supported maintenance mode. Luckily, if this happens, you can use the Administration Panel to continue working on your project.



GitHub: GitHub provides a virtual machine image and a collection of cloud computing instructions that fulfill all necessary resources and installs GitHub through GCP. The total installation takes around two-and-a-half hours.

GitLab: You can install GitLab on the vast majority of popular Linux distributions. There are many methods to get GitLab up and running. Helm charts for K8S installation, Omnibus installation on Linux, and Docker installation are some of the most well-known system configuration methods. It takes around two-and-a-half hours to install GitLab, including time to install Docker, GitLab, and the server.


Architecture and Stability

GitLab: The modular software comprises Nginx, GitLab Workhorse Redis, PostgreSQL, Italy, and other modules. They may cohabit with single nodes in the most basic configuration. To scale, however, they may distribute them among several nodes. Each component may allocate to a single or many nodes.

GitHub: Because GHES is a large enterprise, you cannot separate it into various components. As a result, you can only scale it by migrating to a bigger server (its vertical scaling requires downtime).

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GitLab vs. GitHub: Choosing the Right Platform

GitLab and GitHub have their strengths and weaknesses, and they can be incredibly beneficial when implemented for the right projects. When it comes down to it, the best choice for a given developer or team of developers will differ from project to project. So, the only way to know which platform is best for your next project is to try them out and see which one matches well with your workflow. In the end, both platforms are powerful options that are here to stay. 

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