Top GitHub Apps You Should Know About

The ability to find and integrate the right GitHub apps in your workflow is key to DevOps success. For this reason I gathered few apps that are extremely effective when working on GitHub projects.

Ever since its inception, GitHub has been providing innovative solutions for effective software development. At its core, GitHub helps eliminate process bottlenecks while streamlining collaboration among development teams. However, one challenge that prevalently stands on the way for most developers is picking the right automation tools.

There are hundreds of GitHub tools designed to add or extend functionality to your workflow. Although each tool is unique and serves a different purpose; they are all centered on improving the development process. Whether its code review, continuous integration, localization, dependency management, deployment, monitoring, code quality, security, or project management - there’s a custom-developed app for every task. This depicts how the ability to find and integrate the right GitHub apps in your workflow is key to DevOps success. For this reason, I put together seven apps that will ease away your pain points when working on GitHub projects.

  1. WhiteSource Renovate

WhiteSource Renovate is a free, open-source dependency update tool that automatically resolves outdated dependencies and integrates the updates into your DevOps workflow. This not only saves time and effort for software developers but also helps mitigate risks and security vulnerabilities. One thing you’ll love about Whitesource Renovate is that it’s highly configurable, which allows you to set up customizable workflows. Additionally, the multi-language platform supports over ten languages including Java, JavaScript, PHP, Python, Ruby, Docker, Cargo, Go, Elixir, and more.

If you’re looking to enhance code quality and security, then you have to stay up to date with your dependencies. This is exactly what WhiteSource Renovate does for you- it automatically updates dependencies in your repositories using convenient pull requests.

  1. ImgBot

Optimizing images can be very difficult and time-consuming. However, you can automate the process using ImgBot rather than doing it yourself. Web pages with optimized images load faster. Faster pages have higher conversion rates, lower bounce rates, and happier users. And of course, smaller images reduce bandwidth costs for you and your visitors.

ImgBot crawls your GitHub files and applies a lossless compression on all your images. This reduces the file size but does not affect the dimensions and quality of your images. After compression, ImgBot submits pull requests for you to review and merge. It provides such an easy way to solve image optimization problems and ensure your web pages load faster.

  1. Bolt

Designed to close the gap between code development and security, Bolt helps GitHub developers create more secure products. It detects and alerts you on vulnerable open source components in your repository. It lets you scan unlimited repositories up to a maximum of five times a day. It then generates comprehensive reports of all scanned repositories on the GitHub ‘Issues’ section. Other than letting you discover vulnerabilities in real-time, Bolt also provides actionable and validated recommendations for quicker resolution of security issues.  

Bolt supports over 200 programming languages, making it one of the most sophisticated vulnerability management tools you’ll ever come across. What’s more? It’s powered by WhiteSource's extensive open source vulnerabilities database. This database is continuously updated with data from the NVD, security advisories, and other popular CVE/open source issue trackers. 

  1. Codecov

One of the best development practices is maintaining a smooth code review workflow. Codecov serves this purpose by providing a set of highly integrated tools for grouping, merging, archiving, and comparing code coverage reports. The tool supports multiple languages including PHP, Perl, Java, C, C++, Bash, FORTRAN, Haskell, Elixir, JavaScript, Python, Ruby, and many more. It merges all builds and languages in your project into a single elegant coverage report. Through Codecov, you get customizable commit statuses and detailed pull request comments to enhance your team’s workflow.

Codecov’s awesome browser plugin ensures seamless integration as users can overlay their coverage reports directly in GitHub. It is completely free for all open source repositories. Using it in your development processes will improve the quality of your code and workflow significantly.

  1. Atom

According to GitHub, code review is "a social, emotional, and logistical process" in which pull requests provide "a particularly vulnerable moment" for developers to learn how others view their work.  This means that a platform that integrates code and comments while providing seamless navigation between the two would come in handy for every GitHub developer. From this perspective, Atom -a lightweight, yet solid, cross-platform editor- leads the pack. This open-source text editor can be customized to do almost everything. It also comes bundled with a powerful GitHub package.

GitHub for Atom allows developers to create and switch branches. With it, you can stage, pull, push, and commit changes. Its integration also allows you to resolve merge conflicts and view pull requests right from the editor.  

According to Stack Overflow’s 2019 developer survey, the Atom Editor made it to the top 10 popular developer environments. With the incredibly enhanced features that Atom offers, this GitHub tool is definitely worth your time.

  1. CodeTree

Most people have trouble managing their development workflow, especially when working on multi-repo projects. This can impact the overall efficiency of the project teams significantly. However, development teams can mitigate this challenge by integrating the right project management suite in their workflow. Codetree is an easy solution for project management that allows GitHub users to keep track of their development processes.

With Codetree, you can view and manage issues across multiple repositories from a single dashboard.  It allows you to visualize tasks in a compact list view format or Kanban task board. This tool helps you track dependencies as well as group issues. You can define rules to alter stages, or drag and drop to prioritize tasks. CodeTree works perfectly in every browser, making it an ideal workflow management tool for your GitHub projects.

  1. Moesif API Insights

Moesif is an advanced AI-powered analytics and debugging tool for APIs. It helps you understand user-behavior by providing customer-centric insights. Moesif, through the API analytics feature, provides real-time visibility into your API platform and product usage. On the other hand, the Moesif API debugging feature helps in debugging product and functional issues within your API, so minor issues are addressed before major outages spring up.

Another super-helpful functionality by Moesif is API monitoring, which allows you to monitor API issues that affect customer adoption and retention. You can also set up automatic alerts for API problems by integrating Slack and PagerDuty. With Moesif API Insights, you get to understand how customers use your API, how to build a winning API platform, and how to drive long-term adoption. 

Wrap-up

With all these tools and integrations available in the GitHub Marketplace, DevOps teams can make their processes less-complicated, smoother and more efficient. The right tools and technology provide an easier way to build better software while saving on time, money, and effort. So, If you’re looking to take your software development game a notch higher, then consider implementing these GitHub tools.

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