If the idea of 500 Mb of free Subversion, Trac (with XML-RPC access for things like Mylyn), Wiki, and a whole lot more sounds like a good thing to you, check out Assembla.com. I signed up last night and am really quite floored.

This thing has virtually everything one could want in a project management, source code, ticket tracking, and team collaboration setup. And again, it's free for up to 500 Mb of stuff. And after that it is a paltry $12.50 per month for 5 Gb of storage, plus a few extras like https access.

I've been hosting my own SVN locally but have increasingly been thinking about moving it to an external service so that I can get to it from anywhere. This seals the deal. So far, Assembla has been very impressive, and if it keeps up, I'll be springing for the $12 commercial account and be done with it.

Have a look if you have been thinking about jumping on the Subversion or Trac bandwagon but don't have the time or inclination to set up your own server. And if anyone else has been using Assembla, please share! Thanks.

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  • # Posted By João Fernandes | 4/22/08 10:47 AM

    Oh my, if I only knew about this 1 week sooner I would have spared few hours to setup something that doesn't even have the half of those features.

    Thank you Brian for sharing this, this is awesome.

  • # Posted By Jeff Coughlin | 4/22/08 12:13 PM

    Interesting.

    I wonder how it compares (feature-wise) to something like http://unfuddle.com/

  • # Posted By Jeff Gladnick | 4/22/08 1:13 PM

    Brian,

    Another good one is http://www.DevjaVu.com, which is what I use. They have a free version too, and its been great so far.

  • # Posted By Kyle Hayes | 4/22/08 2:42 PM

    Despite what everyone was saying to use CVSDude and DreamHost when I was shopping for SVN about a month ago, I was on Snook's blog and comment mentioned Assembla. I decided to go with them to the relatively large space allocation and so many features.

  • # Posted By Terry Schmitt | 4/22/08 5:18 PM

    I've been using http://svnrepository.com/ for a couple of years now. You may find them competitive.
    Although their web site is not as flashy as Assembla, they offer rock-solid SVN/Git and TRAC hosting. You can edit your own trac.ini file, so Mylyn connectivity is no problem.
    Being a sole developer, the last thing I want is to maintain a SVN server. I also consider my off-site SVN service crucial to my disaster recovery plan.

  • # Posted By Bruno 'Shine' Figueiredo | 4/23/08 11:08 AM

    I've been using Assembla for almost one year and I must say I'm very pleased.
    It's fast and reliable.
    The only less good aspect is the integration between the Assembla portal and the Trac. Assembla itself has a milestone and bug report but it dosen't integrates easly with Trac, although they are working on it.

    It a 5 star service for 0 bucks. I recommend it fully.

  • # Posted By Brian Kotek | 4/23/08 11:50 AM

    @Bruno - A non-negotiable part of my search for a SVN and Trac system was that it allow XML-RPC access so that I can use Mylyn. So for me, I don't care at all how the portal shows Trac-related stuff since I'll never look at it there. I interact with Trac through Mylyn almost exclusively. You might have a peek at Mylyn since it causes such a shift in the way you think about dealing with tasks and tickets, as all of this is built directly into the IDE instead of having to deal with some external Trac site.

  • # Posted By Boyan Kostadinov | 4/23/08 12:05 PM

    I went through a long PM evaluation a while ago and could not find a better solution than Assembla. You can check out my post and screenshots of their service at http://blog.tech-cats.com/2008/01/kick-butt-projec....

    We are now paying the $13/month which also includes the ability to backup your workspace to Amazon S3. The whole service is pretty nice.

  • # Posted By Bob Silverberg | 4/23/08 9:53 PM

    I've been using Assembla (mostly just for SVN) for a few months now and have been very pleased. I also sprung for the commercial account so my files would be automatically backed up to S3.

  • # Posted By Gabriel Ciuloaica | 4/24/08 2:37 AM

    Here is another good one: http://www.codespaces.com/

  • # Posted By Brian FitzGerald | 5/22/08 11:27 AM

    Hey Brian, first off, thanks for the "Assembla" tip! I have in fact been thinking about "jumping on the Subversion bandwagon", and I set up my free account and already have my first couple repositories set up. Man, that feels great :)

    Anyway, I'm pretty new at using Subversion and now that I have the repository up and kicking I was just curious about how you personally actually deploy code into staging or production environments from there. Do you just do a commit from your local machine when everything is working how you want it and then move those files into staging? If so, should the files on staging be another repository themselves in case you need to roll back the deployment? Then, should the production environment be yet another repository? I guess what I'm trying to figure out is if one actually needs to have a repository for each environment.... or if the one repository is everything you need and you just do commits and updates from there before moving from one environment to another.

    Thanks in advance for any thoughts on this.

  • # Posted By Brian Kotek | 5/22/08 12:11 PM

    No, you want to look into branches and tags in Subversion. This is how you create "snapshots" of the state of the repository. So you could create a "production" branch that is the one you use for production, and a "development" branch that is for development. You can merge changes or fixes from development into production for interim fixes, and create a new version branch when you're ready to create a whole new production snapshot.

    I deploy using ANT so that the whole process is automated. This includes things like getting a particular branch from SVN, zipping and archiving the old site, clearing the code, deploying the targeted branch, executing an HTTP request to trigger a reload of the application, etc. ANT is a whole separate topic but getting familiar with it is well worth the effort.

  • # Posted By Boyan Kostadinov | 5/22/08 1:02 PM

    As Brian said, using branches would be your best option for storing development and production code. My best practice is to keep the current development in SVN "trunk" and create a branch for the production release. On the point of deployment, I use CruiseControl (which integrated with Ant or NAnt) and automatically rebuilds your staging/production environment when there are changes in SVN branch.

  • # Posted By Brian FitzGerald | 5/28/08 12:55 PM

    Ahh..... so that's where all this talk about branches comes in to play :) Thanks for the input guys, I am going to dig in on this and see what I can find out. I also came across the SubVersion book, which should prove totally valuable as well.

    Here is the link in case any other SubVersion noob's find it handy:
    http://svnbook.red-bean.com/

  • # Posted By Matt Quackenbush | 5/30/08 5:32 PM

    @ Brian - Thanks for the tip about assembla. For the first time ever I've now got SVN running. I've never "needed" to since I'm a freelancer and typically develop alone, but I've been wanting to do it. The learning curve of setting up and running my own SVN server was a major barrier-to-entry for me, but thanks to your little tidbit, that's no longer an issue! :-)