Questions tagged [github]

GitHub is a web-based Git repository hosting service, which offers free accounts for FLOSS software projects. Use this tag for questions about how working with GitHub affects open source projects.

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86
votes
2answers
18k views

What can I assume if a publicly published project has no license?

There is some code on GitHub that I would like to use. The repository has no public declaration of license that I can find. But this particular project has over 200 forks and is a pretty active ...
63
votes
4answers
11k views

How does GitHub's “forking right” cope with an “All rights reserved” project?

The GitHub FAQ states (emphasis mine): You're under no obligation to choose a license. It's your right not to include one with your code or project, but please be aware of the implications. ...
49
votes
4answers
5k views

Security of Github.com

Recently some non-technical managers where I work found out that Github has a repository with code from "Hidden Tear" which is a ransomware application. The immediate reaction was to ban GitHub, which ...
43
votes
2answers
3k views

What's the right way to ask if a GitHub project is maintained?

It happens all the time. You come across a useful-looking project that has few or no recent commits, many long-open issues and pull requests, and nothing is changing. How do you usually ask if the ...
40
votes
3answers
7k views

Is it socially acceptable to star your own repositories on GitHub?

While I'm searching for a new project to start contributing to, I often check the daily email I get from GitHub that lists the most popular repositories of the day and also the repositories starred by ...
31
votes
2answers
2k views

Report a security issue to a project hosted at GitHub

If I find a security issue in a Github project should I raise it in the project's issue tracker (where it's open to public scrutiny) or try to find private means to contact the repo's maintainer so ...
28
votes
9answers
17k views

If someone else uploads my GPL'd code to Github without my permission, do they not put it at risk of being stolen by Microsoft?

I was alarmed to see that someone uploaded one of my old GPL'd projects to Github. Github has refused to remove it however, and suggests I contact the uploader who is completely anonymous and cannot ...
25
votes
5answers
361 views

How do I stop people from opening questions in the issue tracker?

I'm a collaborator in a pretty popular open source project hosted on GitHub. We have a problem where people constantly show up in the issue tracker and post questions about the library. Dealing with ...
20
votes
3answers
8k views

Can I ignore an open source license if I checkout a version that was released prior to the code having any license?

There's a package on Github that was released fully without any license and it stayed this way for close to a year. Then just recently after no updates since the initial commit, a License was added. ...
19
votes
5answers
17k views

“GitHub Stars” is a very useful metric. But for *what*?

Users on the GitHub website are able to "star" other people's repositories, thereby saving them in their list of Starred Repos. Some people use "stars" to indicate that they like a project, other ...
18
votes
3answers
2k views

Are the new GitHub Terms of service a kiss of death for open source projects?

This recent post tends to say that the new GitHub TOS make most open source projects at odds to comply with both their FOSS licensing and the TOS. Is this right? Anything copyleft (GPL, AGPL, LGPL,...
18
votes
2answers
13k views

Does the owner of the github repository own the copyright to the code?

Say I'm the only one uploading code to someone's private repository, do they own the copyright to the code? Or do I own the copyright to the code since I wrote it? Would adding a license stating ...
17
votes
2answers
193 views

How to handle a pattern of GitHub volunteers wanting to work on an issue then disappearing

Since I registered my project on Up For Grabs, I get a lot of novice volunteers, which is great as I like both the ideas of 1) improving the app 2) introducing novices to open source collaboration. ...
16
votes
3answers
741 views

What tools on GitHub can help me do quality assurance for my projects?

I run a moderately successful open source project on GitHub (it is a privacy enhancing tool for public websites, based upon some PETs I developed for my thesis). I am getting quite a few feature ...
15
votes
1answer
1k views

How to license software that implements a well-documented algorithm, but which does not borrow source from the official library?

I have implemented an RSYNC library based on the technical report by Andrew Tridgell and Paul Mackerras. The library implementation does not borrow code from the official RSYNC library and does not ...
15
votes
2answers
274 views

Starting (not forking) a new project based on a seemingly dead one

I recently forked a small github project to work on an open issue regarding the program's execution speed. I've achieved a substantial speedup, and I'm ready to submit a pull request. However, the ...
15
votes
1answer
2k views

Forking GitHub repository (MIT): what references to the original author should remain intact?

I'll pick one of the most popular React boilerplates as an example here. Assume I've forked it (the commits history till the fork date remains intact). According to the text of MIT license, the only ...
15
votes
3answers
4k views

Common practice on GitHub and license/copyright

I have been searching the web for quite some time now, but the plethora of opinions/comments/articles about licensing questions make it difficult to verify how trustworthy the various sources are. ...
14
votes
2answers
3k views

Is my code FLOSS just because it is published it on GitHub?

Does publishing my code on GitHub make it FLOSS automatically? Is there some license automatically assigned to it? Is it "technically or say literally, open source"?
14
votes
3answers
2k views

Rules/Guidelines about forking a project vs. creating a new one?

After reading these lines: make a new github project (not a fork). merge in the original repository. In this Answer, I was wondering if there are any rules or guidelines when to fork a ...
14
votes
2answers
2k views

When folks send me pull-requests on GitHub, what are their copyright/licensing terms by default?

Say I'm maintaining a GPLv3 project on GitHub with a LICENSE file, code headers and all. Now, a few folks made some code enhancements and sent me a pull-request. Does that automatically mean that they ...
13
votes
2answers
670 views

Should I require that new issues be written in English?

English is considered by most to be a lingua franca for the developer community. From time to time issues written in another language are opened on GitHub projects that I manage, which I personally ...
12
votes
2answers
2k views

Who is responsible on resolving conflicts on different PRs?

I'm the owner of the code in github and responsible of merging PRs in the main upper stream. I have two different PRs from different two contributers which have conflicts in some files. Who is ...
12
votes
2answers
365 views

What should I do if maintainers are unresponsive/how can I become a maintainer?

I have just a couple years of experience in software development and in the past few months have been dipping my toes in the water of making open source contributions. It was very exciting when my ...
12
votes
1answer
2k views

How to deal with copyright infringement on GitHub

I have a public repository on GitHub. Some of the code was copy-and-pasted into another repository without keeping Licence headers and without any other back-linking to the original repository. How ...
12
votes
1answer
202 views

Can I resubmit someone else's pull request if he does not sign CLA?

Someone helped with progress upstream at an open source project I really rely on. He basically did what I was not capable of and now I am waiting for his pull request to be merged and included in ...
11
votes
2answers
184 views

Github etiquette: Is it polite to help for issue triage?

I have been wandering in the issues of a particular open-source project hosted on Github for a few months, as well as related projects. I'm not a contributor myself (except for some typos in the ...
11
votes
2answers
7k views

How to apply MIT license in the GitHub repo for fully free project?

I have a public repository for an open source project on GitHub. It's main goal is to make this code available to anybody (including myself) who may what to use it, for free, for all the time, with ...
10
votes
4answers
253 views

How to indicate that I also have an issue on github?

On GitHub issue page, there doesn't seem to be a place to show that I also share this problem (e.g. upvote, +1) to let the developers prioritize this issue. Is there a way to do this? If know, how do ...
10
votes
3answers
4k views

What if somebody removed my name from MIT license

Case: I developed a software and uploaded it to Github with MIT license. To apply the license, I created a LICENSE file with MIT license preamble (as mentioned in choosealicense.com) Somebody cloned(...
10
votes
1answer
386 views

Can a GitHub Organization assert copyright?

I started an OSS project with a fellow coding enthusiast in 2014 (that has since pretty much left the project, although as far as I can tell he's still following everything that's going on). Since the ...
10
votes
1answer
129 views

How to stop/mitigate damage from abuses of the Collective Code Construction Contract (C4)

What defenses does an Open Source project utilizing the Collective Code Construction Contract (C4) have against unknown developers who may have intentions to merge malicious (but not immediately ...
9
votes
2answers
4k views

Must author's name be included in GNU GPL v3?

I noticed the GNU GPL v3 license created by Github is very different than the one created by Netbeans. One of the differences is the first line in Netbean's is Copyright (C) 2016 hotwisp Must the GPL ...
9
votes
1answer
1k views

License to use for smaller GitHub repos

I frequently create programs to process my local files in some fashion. About half of them are Bash shell scripts under 100 lines, others may be longer, include multiple files, or even be in other ...
9
votes
1answer
2k views

How to license website hosted on GitHub?

Assuming the following situation: I am having a GitHub open-source repository, licensed under the MIT license I want to document the software on a website with a logo and usage examples, hosted open-...
8
votes
2answers
162 views

Where do I put documentation? How much is necessary?

I'm creating a program in python that simulates an ideal quantum computer. It is on GitHub, and while it is not anywhere near complete yet, I don't know how much documentation I need to include, and ...
8
votes
2answers
240 views

How can i grow my open source project?

I have recently started my first open source project. I want people to contribute their ideas and to help grow this project. I don't know how I should spread it. I have a guide on how to contribute, a ...
8
votes
1answer
1k views

I want to make my private GitHub repo public; can I put part of it under MIT license, and keep the rest protected?

I have been working on a project that is hosted on GitHub in a private repository. The repo has three directories, call them frame, private1, private2. The frame directory is framework code used by ...
8
votes
4answers
774 views

Can a team be the copyright holder (MIT)?

I'm developing in a team of OSS developers and currently my name is specified in all LICENSE files or copyright headers. But, as it's a teamwork instead of writing "Copyright (c) 2017 MY Name" I would ...
8
votes
1answer
882 views

If I translate/port a repository from one programming language to another, do I need to use the license file (Github) from that original project?

If I translate/port a repository from one programming language to another, do I need to use the license file (Github) from that original project? Or can I use my own license file. I intend to use the ...
8
votes
1answer
205 views

Licensing code on GitHub in a valid way

I'm currently developing something on GitHub. I would like to keep it open source; however I want to make sure in no way am I liable for any issues, and that my code cannot simply be copied and ...
8
votes
2answers
275 views

Required works to put existing GPLv3 source code on GitHub, with respect to modification dates

I was looking at the GPLv3 License. It states that when I modify the Program and distribute it, I need to meet the condition of: a) The work must carry prominent notices stating that you modified it,...
8
votes
1answer
83 views

What should I do about code style if a GitHub project is missing CONTRIBUTING.md?

I want to contribute to a C# project on GitHub, but the repository is missing a CONTRIBUTING.md file. I've already noticed a few code style inconsistencies, but I don't want to assume the project is ...
7
votes
2answers
3k views

What is the correct way to add license information to source code?

I have recently released some projects on GitHub and its catching people's attention(I had released earlier too but they were just for learning and didn't carry much weight). But I think I made a ...
7
votes
2answers
267 views

How to store our own fork of a project to ensure pulling fixes and contributing back is as easy as possible

I work at a small company in a small IT department. We use Visual Studio Online (the Team Foundation Server flavor of VSO) to store our source code. We're interested in deploying an open source (GPL ...
7
votes
2answers
593 views

How do Open Source projects manage continuous delivery credentials?

If one has an open source project that is deployed somewhere in the cloud via a continuous delivery pipeline, how can the programmatic credentials needed for the CI/CD to deploy the application ...
7
votes
2answers
839 views

Is a license bound to a commit?

Lets say there is some software hosted in a public github git repository under some license A. The owner and copyright-holder now decides to relicense the source-code to another license B. If i would ...
7
votes
1answer
166 views

Is having a repository on GitHub considered distribution?

TL;DR Is having a repository on GitHub considered distribution in the sense of a license? Description I have some repositories on GitHub. Now I modified a file for a project. The file was licensed ...
7
votes
2answers
586 views

How to structure git repository for a new project based on an existing one?

I am looking to write a new open source library (at github.com/me/my_lib, say). Rather than starting from scratch I would like to begin with a copy of the code from an existing project (github.com/...
7
votes
1answer
600 views

GitHub's “Help wanted” label: What if I want help on all issues?

I have a project with 200 open issues (many more closed), and I want to encourage more people to join and fix issues. Recently GitHub is showing me this: Label issues and pull requests for new ...