Coders spooked by a Microsoft-owned Github

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Coders spooked by a Microsoft-owned Github

As deal talk firms.

Developers are re-examining their open source code repository options as the prospect of Microsoft acquiring Github firmed overnight.

News that Microsoft was circling Github first emerged on Saturday but gathered considerable weight as Bloomberg reported Monday that an agreement between the two companies had been reached.

The last valuation of Github was US$2 billion but that was three years ago, Bloomberg noted.

The code repository is yet to turn a profit, but could be worth as much as US$5 billion now, based on some of the numbers being thrown around.

Talk of the takeover has stoked fears among developers about how it might impact Github, which is popularly used in the open source community, as well as by large corporates.

Major Australian corporate users include Telstra, Westpac and CBA.

A Twitter poll run by open source podcaster Bryan Lunduke found 68 percent of people with a Github account would move if the service was bought out by Microsoft.

A larger poll run by The Verge suggested the largest proportion of developers (44 percent) were neutral to the buyout and would adopt a wait-and-see approach; however, a further 32 percent in that poll were negative on the idea.

Some were worried about how Github might be commercialised.

“I hope they don't pull a Skype and create ‘GitHub for Business’ by rebranding Visual Studio Team Services,” tweeted Joe Beda, a co-founder and CTO of Kubernetes subscription service provider Heptio.

Alternative repositories reported large amounts of traffic and code transfers.

Gitlab said it is “seeing 10x the normal daily amount of repositories. We're scaling our fleet to try to stay up."

Atlassian’s Bitbucket code hosting service was also being touted by some developers as an alternative, while others still looked more broadly.

“I got an email from one my client who is @Github private repo business customer,” open source forum NixCraft said in a tweet.

“They want to move out of Github to a personal GIT server hosted either in AWS or Google Cloud.

“They fear that Microsoft might get insight into their codebase. Small startups/business do not trust MS.”

Not all developers were against the prospect of a Microsoft-run Github.

“Am I the only one that is kind of excited about the MS / GitHub talks?” Android software engineer Leland Richardson said.

“I know that we're all supposed to hate them and all... but VS Code and TypeScript are two of the best maintained OSS [open source software] projects i've ever seen. MS is not the old MS anymore.”

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