GitLab 15 sets course for artificial intelligence

The new version of the platform was unveiled by the San Francisco publisher. Combining in particular MLOps, DataOps and observability, its functionalities will be gradually launched in the coming months.

[Mise à jour le mercredi 25 mai à 17h04] GitLab has officially lifted the veil on version 15 of its DevOps platform. The novelties of this new version will be gradually launched in the coming months (see thea roadmap on the publisher’s website). A large part of them are centered on artificial intelligence. In the program : the integration of the concept of MLOps with the management of the entire chain of machine learning (ML), from the training of the models to their deployment through their testing. To build the training datasets, GitLab will implement an infrastructure for extracting, loading and transforming data. Downstream, a monitoring console will be delivered to drive the ML life cycle, as well as a traceability system integrating source code security, model version management, as well as access control management and collaboration of data scientists. GitLab also insists on improvements to its platform in terms of observability. In this area, he plans in particular “to unify error tracking, metrics, logs and traces within a single code monitoring solution”. Other developments in sight : a series of new security features, notably around zero-trust, source scans, software supply chain management, access policies…

GitLab, what is it?

GitLab is an open source collaborative development platform published by the American company of the same name. It covers all the steps of DevOps. Based on the functionalities of the Git software, it allows you to control source code repositories and manage their different versions. Its use is particularly indicated for developers who wish to have a reactive and accessible tool.

GitLab claims more than 100,000 organizations using its platform around the world. Which represents a total of more than 30 million registered users.

Open source, the application is the subject of community development. According to the GitLab company, 3,000 contributors collaborate in its evolution. In France, the San Francisco company claims several customer references. This is the case of the aircraft manufacturer Airbusof the’European Space Agencyof the ESN Sopra Steriae-merchant VeePee or the payment expert Worldline.

The interface of GitLab remains very similar to that from GitHub. However, GitLab offers options that are less practical:

  • Project management
  • Planning / prioritization
  • Build
  • Software testing
  • Application Security
  • Configuration Management
  • Monitoring
  • Continuous integration and deployment, etc.

For ergonomic use, GitLab is located on a virtual machine, itself hosted on a web server. This collaborative platform tool is based on a database. The administration interface, in particular for the creation of user accounts, requires an online configuration.

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GitLab aims to cover all stages of DevOps: project management, task prioritization, build, software testing, configuration management, CI/CD, monitoring… © JDN / Capture

What is GitLab CI?

GitLab CI/CD is a GitLab tool designed to manage the continuous integration and deployment of application code and revisions. GitLab CI/CD goes through the configuration of a file called .gitlab-ci.yml placed in the root directory. A file that generates a pipeline executing code changes within the code repository.

What is a GitLab Runner?

Gitlab-runner is the application for running tasks in a GitLab CI/CD pipeline. If installing Gitlab-runner locally, it is recommended to deploy it on a separate machine from the one hosting the GitLab instance, both for performance and security reasons. Each must be equipped with its own software stack: OS, Kubernetes, Docker…

What are GitLab Pages used for?

GitLab Pages allow you to publish static websites directly from a GitLab repository. Usable with any static site generator, they can be used to present development projects managed through GitLab.

Available from the free offer, GitLab Pages can be hosted on GitLab.com or on a dedicated GitLab instance. It is possible to associate your own domain name and assign them a TLS encryption certificate.

Is GitLab free?

GitLab is free for open source development projects (under MIT license). In this configuration, the service can run up to 400 minutes of continuous integration and delivery (CI/CD) pipelines per month, and drives all DevOps steps.

What is the price of GitLab?

Alongside its free offer, GitLab offers two paid plans: GitLab Premium for $19 per user per month, and GitLab Ultimate for $99 per user per month. The first includes advanced CI/CD features: control dashboard, GitLab agent for Kubernetes, multi-project management… The second includes additional compliance management and security testing features. While GitLab Premium allows running up to 10,000 minutes of CI/CD pipelines per month, GitLab Ultimate bumps that level up to 50,000 minutes.

It is possible to subscribe to additional capacities if necessary. GitLab prices 1000 extra CI/CD minutes at $10, and $60 per year for 10 GB of storage.

GitLab presents itself as an alternative to GitHub. Its installation can be done locally or via a web server. It is even possible to go through a virtual machine, itself based on an online server.

GitLab vs. GitHub

If GitHub can come close toa social network specialized, GitLab presents itself more as free software. The two collaborative platforms are distinguished by their respective services and functionalities. GitLab makes it possible to maintain a certain independence vis-à-vis the structure and tends to increase its offer. GitHub benefits from a larger community and more flexible plans for private directory subscriptions.

Does GitLab integrate with GitHub?

Not only does GitLab integrate with GitHub, but it provides the ability to run its continuous integration and continuous delivery pipelines from any external Git repository from any vendor.

To facilitate its integration with GitHub, GitLab has developed GitLab CI/CD for GitHub. This brick allows you to directly connect a CI/CD project created in GitLab to a GitHub code repository. It automatically configures repository synchronization (via pull mirroring), webhook push to GitLab CI/CD triggers as soon as code is committed, and GitHub update in return.

GitLab API

To benefit from the documentation of API of GitLab, the company offers a online documentationas well as’search engine to unearth answers to more specific technical questions.

Redmine vs. GitLab

GitLab is a built software platform based on Git. Developed by GitLab Inc, it covers bug tracking, continuous integration and continuous delivery (IC/CD). Domains on which Redmine is not present. Just to manage access management to source code repositories, the latter must use third-party tools.

On the other hand, Redmine allows you to create, customize and orchestrate allocation and event management processes (bugs, defects, etc.) via a console called trackers. Via its problem management systemGitLab does not currently offer the same degree of customization.

GitLab and Docker

Free software Docker launches applications in software containers. For the use of GitLab, its integration makes it possible to automate certain functionalities when sending your source code. For example, it can perform unit tests, send notifications and install “npm install” type dependencies.

GitLab also has a GitLab agent for the Kubernetes container orchestrator, which allows it to apply its CI/CD pipeline to Kubernetes clusters.

Tutorials: some links

In order to take advantage of the many features of GitLab, discover the following tutorials:

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GitLab 15 sets course for artificial intelligence


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