Posted in Undependable Support

Google shutting down Google Code

Woe to those who chose Google Code as the host of their open source projects. From the Monster’s mouth:

When we started the Google Code project hosting service in 2006, the world of project hosting was limited. We were worried about reliability and stagnation, so we took action by giving the open source community another option to choose from. Since then, we’ve seen a wide variety of better project hosting services such as GitHub and Bitbucket bloom. Many projects moved away from Google Code to those other systems. To meet developers where they are, we ourselves migrated nearly a thousand of our own open source projects from Google Code to GitHub.

As developers migrated away from Google Code, a growing share of the remaining projects were spam or abuse. Lately, the administrative load has consisted almost exclusively of abuse management. After profiling non-abusive activity on Google Code, it has become clear to us that the service simply isn’t needed anymore.

Beginning today, we have disabled new project creation on Google Code. We will be shutting down the service about 10 months from now on January 25th, 2016. Below, we provide links to migration tools designed to help you move your projects off of Google Code. We will also make ourselves available over the next three months to those projects that need help migrating from Google Code to other hosts.

TechCrunch’s Natasha Lomas notes:

In comments on Google’s blog post, some Google Code users express disappointment the company is not intending to continue hosting those projects that aren’t migrated — maybe because their maintainer has gone AWOL or passed away — in a read-only format, given that they will otherwise be entirely lost come final shutdown.

“Wouldn’t it be more responsible for Google to just host the projects that don’t move over indefinitely in a read only mode? I can’t imagine that it’s resource intensive and it’d instill more faith in Google products. It’s like watching GeoCities go away,” writes one.

“A complete copy of all projects should be handed over to so that we don’t lose history and important projects that are no longer maintained,” adds another.

Google’s plans in regard to Google Code demonstrate that Google doesn’t archive for the sake of history, it archives for profit. That’s why it will spend large sums of money maintaining vast quantities of user data in its data centers, but won’t keep open to the public read-only archives of a nearly ten year old project hosting service it has decided it’s no longer interested in.