WANdisco CEO: Git not fit for enterprise

WANdisco CEO David Richards has challenged the rise of Git by saying it's no threat to the open source Subversion in the enterprise space. Providing commercially supported services to Apache Subversion, this is not the first time that the company has ruffled feathers among the developer community.

In a Q&A running on the Business Computing World website, Richards states, “Git has its uses but probably not in the enterprise. OK please listen, I know that statement will upset a bunch of senior developers who think that Git solves everything but it really doesn't. If you think about it, Git actually promotes anti-social software development; development in small, disconnected silos is not how software is developed in the real world.”

Richards continues, “Most software is developed by teams whose members have a variety of skills who need to see what each other is doing and that's the fundamental reason why Git is not a threat to Subversion in the enterprise. It's fine for the development of the Linux kernel but that model doesn't work for most companies.”

WANdisco is somewhat predictably taking this line in light of the company’s recent release of its uberSVN tool. A free Twitter and Facebook style social collaboration and communication tool for team-based development projects, uberSVN has (according to WANdisco) already enjoyed considerable downloads.

After the publication of Richards’ piece on the aforementioned website, users replied with a variety of comments. Karl Laurentius Roos wrote, “That wasn’t a very objective statement about Git. I can agree upon that Git is much better suited for open source projects of all scales, everything from the Linux kernel to smaller projects. However, on the enterprise side I’m sure that it all depends on the developers, as much as it does with subversion.”

B. K. Oxley followed up by commenting, “This is an offbeat perspective. Git is preferred over Subversion in the corporate environments I’ve been in for purely technical reasons. I’ve not encountered any social differences in actual use between the two in business.”

Among twenty other comments at the time of writing, James McKay writes, “Git doesn’t promote anti-social software development any more than Subversion does. What Git does promote is much more fine-grained check-ins that are easier to describe and easier to understand. A merge between branches in git/hg is roughly equivalent in your workflow to an update/commit in Subversion. It also gives you the concept of source control as a project-wide, persistent undo button with offline commits and local history -- and that is very useful.”

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