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Keeping Your Code Organized: Repository Management in DevOps

In the software development world, there are two main types of repositories: code repositories and artifact repositories.

A code repository is a collection of source code files organized in a specific way, while an artifact repository, like the Helm repository by JFrog, is a collection of binary files, such as JARs (Java ARchive files) or WARs (Web application ARchives).

Most modern DevOps toolchains include both types of repositories. In this article, we’ll discuss deeper what they are, and how you can use them to organize your code.

Code Repository in Software Development

A code repository is a cloud-based storage location for your code. It’s used by developers to track changes to their code, share it with others, and submit it for review before it’s deployed to production.

The most popular code repositories are GitHub and Bitbucket, but there are many others, such as GitLab, Azure DevOps, and Amazon CodeCommit.

Code repositories usually use the Git version control system, which is a decentralized system that allows developers to work on their own copies of the code and then merge their changes back into the main branch when they’re ready.

Git has become the de facto standard for code repositories, but there are also other version control systems in use, such as Mercurial and Subversion.

Types and Versions

Code repositories can be public or private. Public repositories are open to anyone, while private repositories are only accessible to invited users.

Most code repositories offer both free and paid plans. Free plans usually have some limitations, such as the number of private repositories or the size of the repositories.

Artifact Depository in Software Development

An artifact repository, on the other hand, is a cloud-based storage location for binary files, such as JARs (Java ARchive files) or WARs (Web application ARchives).

Artifact repositories are used by developers to share compiled code with other members of their team and to manage dependencies between different projects.

JFrog’s Artifactory is the most popular artifact repository, but there are also other options, such as Apache Archiva and Sonatype Nexus.

Why Use a Code Repository?

There are several reasons why you might want to use a code repository:

  • If you’re working on a project with other people, a code repository is a great way to share your code and collaborate.
  • Code repositories make it easy to track changes to your code over time. You can see who made each change, and when it was made, which helps if you need to roll back to a previous version of your code.
  • Code repositories can help you manage dependencies between different projects. If you have a library that’s used by multiple projects, you can store it in a code repository and then reference it from each project. This makes it easy to update the library in one place and have the changes propagate to all of the projects that use it.
  • Before your code is deployed to production, it’s usually reviewed by someone else. Code repositories make it easy to submit your code for review and track the feedback.

Why Use an Artifact Repository?

Artifact repositories are used for similar reasons as code repositories. In particular, they’re useful for sharing compiled code with others and for managing dependencies between different projects.

Artifact repositories can also help you automate your build process. For instance, you can configure your build system to automatically fetch the latest versions of your dependencies from the artifact repository, and then build and deploy your code.

When using a repository, you must check its security. There are many reasons why you should consider code obfuscation or encryption during development, but the main purpose here is to make sure unauthorized people don’t get a hold of what you’re storing.

How To Use a Code or Artifact Repository?

The steps involved in using both the code repository and artifact repository are the same, except for the difference in the tool you may be using. GitHub is the most popular code repository, so we’ll use it as an example.

To use an artifact repository, you can use these same steps on the artifact repository service you’re using.

  • First, you need to create a GitHub account and then sign in.
  • Once you’re signed in, you can either create a new repository or clone an existing one.
  • If you’re starting from scratch, you can create a new repository by clicking the “Create a new repository” button on the homepage.
  • You’ll need to enter a name for your repository, and then select whether it will be public or private.
  • If you’re cloning an existing repository, you can do so by clicking the “Clone or download” button on the repository page.
  • This will give you a URL that you can use to clone the repository.
  • Once you’ve cloned the repository, you can add files to it and commit your changes.
  • To push your changes back to GitHub, you can use the git push command.


That’s everything you need to know about code repositories and artifact repositories! Code repositories are used to store and share your source code, while artifact repositories are used to store and share your compiled code.

Both types of repositories can be used to collaborate with others, track changes over time, and manage dependencies between different projects. If you’re just getting started with repositories, GitHub is a good option.

For artifact repositories, JFrog’s Artifactory is the most popular option. But there are many other choices available, so be sure to check out what’s out there and see what works best for you. Thanks for reading!


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