GitHub’s Free Users Will Now Be Able to Make Private Repositories

Posted on January 7, 2019 by Mehedi Hassan in Dev with 13 Comments

Microsoft-owned GitHub is making a major change to its service. To date, private repositories on the service required users to pay $7 a month for a personal developer account. And if you were a regular user who isn’t willing to pay $7 a month for private repositories, you wouldn’t have any options than to pay for the subscription service.

Until this week.

GitHub is expected to roll out a change to its free service tomorrow, introducing the ability to create private repositories without actually paying anything. The change will allow developers to create unlimited private repositories without needing to pay for the paid accounts. Unlimited private repositories were already available for free via GitHub’s Education program to students and teachers, by the way.

There’s a catch: if you do create private repositories using the free service, you will only be able to have up to 3 collaborators. This means if you are working on a project with other developers and need more than 3 collaborators, you would have to get a paid account, which is now called GitHub Pro.

And that’s not too much of a problem, to be honest. If you are an independent developer who has a ton of side projects and similar things, you can create private repositories for free without having to pay anything with the change. And truth is, most of the independent projects on GitHub are mostly personal projects that are either not fully developed or left behind by the developer. The majority of the developer community will definitely love this change.

GitHub is also unifying its enterprise plans into a single plan: GitHub Enterprise, compromising of GitHub Business Cloud and GitHub Enterprise.

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Comments (13)

13 responses to “GitHub’s Free Users Will Now Be Able to Make Private Repositories”

  1. dcdevito

    This is great.

  2. skane2600

    It's an improvement but bitbucket's limit of 5 users for free is better.

  3. j_c

    Awesome news. I get my $7 a month back!

  4. shmuelie

    So... merging in VSO features?

  5. JacobTheDev

    This is awesome! I've been using GitLab for private repos, but I'll consider switching now ☺️

  6. bennett_cg

    Usage and diction error in the last paragraph, should read: GitHub Enterprise, comprising GitHub Business Cloud and GitHub Enterprise.

  7. NoFlames

    This was one of the reasons I used bitbucket for personal use. With this change, I will start using GitHub since it will meet my needs and it's one less service to manage.

  8. Trickyd

    Great news and brings it into line with Azure Devops Git repos (formerly Visual Studio online) which have always had a free tier for private repos.

  9. dontbe evil

    but but ms is going to kill github /s

    anyway I'm still using azure devops (ex visual studio online), that always gave free private repos and offers many more tools

  10. SRLRacing

    Is this where we cry about how Microsoft is ruining GitHub?