Private Git hosting services FAQ: What companies offer Git hosting, in particular private Git hosting services?
I recently started looking for a private Git hosting service, and the obvious first place to look is GitHub. They provide free Git hosting for open source projects, and their service has been excellent. But when I looked at their private Git hosting service, I was really surprised by the cost of their plans. Their lowest price private Git hosting plan is $7/month, and that allows only five Git projects, and relatively little disk space. Since I want a private Git hosting service to store all my projects, I'd immediately need to go to one of their paid Git hosting plans, and their Git hosting prices go up quickly from there.
Update: Github has changed their policies significantly since I first wrote this article.
Private Git hosting with A2 Hosting
As I began to dig around, a company named A2 Hosting seems to offer a very viable private Git hosting service, whether they mean to or not. They seem to be more in the web hosting business, but they have this Git hosting page, which describes their Git hosting service. After looking at that page, this next page details all of their hosting services, and you will indeed find Git hosting on that page, along with CVS and SVN hosting.
Here's a blurb from their Git hosting page about their Git hosting service:
"Git Hosting is pre-installed on all of our servers and is available via SSH. All of our web or reseller packages that include SSH shell access will allow you to take full advantage of version control using Git."
Their "StartUp" plan offers SSH and Git access, so out of curiosity I made up a domain name, filled out their forms, and sure enough, it looks like I can have my own private Git hosting service on their servers for less than $6/month -- $67.95, to be exact. Part of that is because they're currently offering a 30% discount, but even without that, their Git hosting service would cost only $96.35 per year, much cheaper than the GitHub hosting plans.
I haven't ordered a Git hosting server with A2 yet (changed: see below for update), but at the moment this seems like the most cost-effective option. Well, I guess the most cost-effective option is to set up a Git server on a Linux server here at the devdaily.com international headquarters, but in this case I like the idea of having my Git hosting service off site. Frankly, this helps to serve as an off-site backup option as well as a Git hosting service, so it fills several needs for me.
Git hosting with PrivateLocker
Another company named PrivateLocker.com offers private Git hosting at prices that are lower than GitHub, so if you're not interested in setting up a domain name and Git hosting service with A2, they may be another viable alternative. As of this moment, they offer a plan for 15 users, 10 GB data storage, and unlimited projects for $119/year. Again, this price is much better than what GitHub currently offers.
Free and private Git hosting services
If you Google "git hosting" or "private Git hosting" you'll find a few other Git hosting services, but at the moment this seems like the three most viable Git hosting options. If everything works out with A2 Hosting, they look like the cheapest private Git hosting option, and offer other services as well. PrivateLocker looks like the second-cheapest alternative, and they offer other services like Trac with their plans. Finally, GitHub, which has made a name for themselves in offering free Git repositories for open source projects is also available, with plans ranging from $7/month to $200/month. For my needs, having my own server with SSH access for less than $6/month sounds pretty nice, so I expect to give A2 Hosting a try for my private Git hosting service.
Followup: Since writing this article I have created my own private Git hosting server with A2 Hosting, and I'm very pleased with everything so far. I've written an A2 Hosting review, and I've also written in detail about my A2 Hosting private Git service setup.