GitLab vs CircleCI – What’s the Difference ? (Pros and Cons)

GitLab vs CircleCI – What’s the Difference ? (Pros and Cons). In this article, I will write  about using GitLab and CircleCI. You will initially get to know what these two hosting servers are and how they work. In addition, you will learn what are the benefits of using them. Then I will present you their advantages and disadvantages. At the end I will try to explain the differences between them. Shall we start GitLab vs CircleCI?

What is a GitLab server?

GitLab is a Git repository and lifecycle engine. It is a complete DevOps platform that allows professionals to manage and perform a wide variety of project tasks.

Thanks to the Gitlab platform, professionals involved in the project can seamlessly collaborate on planning, coding, management and monitoring. Together, teams aim to develop better software that reduces cycle times and deliver value to customers on time.

With GitLab it enables teams to collaborate on project tasks, from the early stages. 

 Use of GitLab is increasing day by day. Due to the extensive functions and availability of the code.

The GitLab projects are private and public and are designed as open source so that everyone has the opportunity to access for free. The public repository on GitLab enjoys use in wiki, documentation and issue tracking. It is designed to store information and many trusted objects with multiple references to them. Worth adding that it acts as the central hub where beginners and developers alike are used to create, host, test, share and collaborate on all of their web projects.

Benefits and Features of GitLab platform

We can say that GitLab have features that enable great continuous integration and well integrated continuous development pipelines. When using GitLab, you may prefer to pay and use of the schema for manual external integrations such as CI services.

Integrated monitoring is supported by GitLab to collect all performance metrics for applications and servers. It allows the user to determine the impact of combining industrial and production systems. Fast actions are only possible with it to keep your coding neat and fast.

Benefits of using GitLab Server

  • Array of deployment options.
  • No need for integrations.
  • Scalable platform.
  • Improves quality of content.
  • Enables collaboration to share content and best practices.
  • Built with Enterprise Grade Security Capabilities.
  • Comprehensively Handles the whole lifecycle of applications.
  • Open source.
  • It is built on Git.

Features of GitLab

Pros of GitLab Server

  • Allows us to collaborate, review code, manage projects and monitor issues.
  • Outstanding pipeline capabilities.
  • Community based environment.
  • Built with enterprise grade security capabilities.
  • Properly manages the Entire Lifecycle of Applications.
  • Easy to add jobs and manage conflict issues.
  • Robust CI with awesome Docker support.
  • Simple configuration.

Cons of GitLab Server

  • Advance security and portfolio management is available in Ultimate plan only.
  • No analytics for pipeline tracking.
  • Its interface may be somewhat slower than the competition.
  • There are some common problems with repositories.

What is a CircleCI?

CircleCI is a platform that is used for continuous integration and delivery. It also helps development teams to efficiently release code and automate development, testing and deployment.

With CircleCI it is a cloud hosted platform that provides continuous integration, deployment, and testing hosted on a GitHub repository.

This platform is very easily configurable to efficiently run tightly complex pipelines using docker caching, resource classes and much more.

Also CircleCI has unique access to data on the work of engineering teams and the operation of their code. Companies like Spotify, Coinbase use our services to improve the productivity of the engineering team. Helps to release better products and significantly leads to faster time to market.

Benefits and Features of CircleCI platform

Organizations use CircleCI because their tasks are very fast and their builds can be optimized for speed of delivery.

Benefits of using CircleCI Server

  • Uses a reusable configuration package for integration with other companies.
  • Sets up caching with two simple keys so you can reuse data from previous tasks in your workflow.
  • A self service set up for exceptional platform support.
  • Gets stable test detection with test visibility.
  • Uses ready to use Docker images in multiple languages.

Features of CircleCI

Pros of CircleCI

  • The generous free tier will get development teams quite far before spending any money.
  • The have very customizable platform, with intelligent pricing as you scale.
  • Great customer service and it is easy to use. There are also constant product updates based on reviews, which is not common with most other products.
  • It offers a lot of useful features, most of which can be used with the free plan. Customer service is also excellent.
  • GitHub integration.
  • Easy to setup.
  • Provides fast builds.

Cons of CircleCI

  • The config is probably the worst of the cloud CI software.
  • Alternatives like Strider gave CircleCi a bad name due to much more features.
  • Does not cache docker images.
  • Changes the environment without warning.

GitLab vs CircleCI What's the Difference?

Gitlab and CircleCI Comparison

Interestingly CircleCI was awarded “Automate your Development Process Fast, Safe and on Large Scale”. The platform is continuously integrated.  Delivers and helps a software development company to release code quickly and reliably. They automate the development, testing and deployment process.  

It also has a modern software development platform that allows the company to grow on a large scale.

GitLab, on the other hand, is described as “open source Git self-management software.” Gives you a way to manage a git repository, code reviews, problem tracking, checking activity feeds and wiki.

GitLab vs CircleCI Differences

  • GitLab provides out of the box and inbuilt Git VCS, but it can also be used with GitHub for 400 free CI pipeline minutes.
  • Plus, it works with 160+ other tools and platforms, including Lambda Test.

CircleCI vs Gitlab Differences

  • CircleCI works with any version control system (VCS) such as GitHub or Bitbucket.
  • Interestingly CircleCI can be integrated with much less tools about 50 tools and services, including Slack and LambdaTest.

Security & performance in GitLab Server

  • Automatic scaling, parallel builds and container registry features are designed to improve the performance of GitLab CI / CD.
  • Also GitLab provides SAST, DAST, dependency analysis, secret feature detection and license compliance to deliver highly secure applications.

Security & performance in CircleCI Server

  • It uses caching quickly enough to speed up builds.
  • With CircleCI, you have application level security and isolated runtime security.
  • Has a SOC II certified CircleCI and FedRamp certification.

Integrations with GitLab

  • More benefits with GitLab CI is that it can be used with GitHub, BitBucket, or any other GIT based server.
  • Platform of GitLab can be used with Jenkins CI too.
  • HipChat, Slack, Auth0, SAML, Bitbucket and several other integrations are available to streamline project lifecycle management.

Integrations with CircleCI

  • For testing, you can integrate CircleCI with platforms like LambdaTest.
  • Integrations of CircleCI are AWS cloud ecosystem, Azure, Google Cloud, OpenShift, Serverless, and several other environments/platforms to deploy your application.

Custom build environments and language support with GitLab

  • Another benefit of GitLab CI/CD is that it can be used to execute your build scripts on any platform that supports GO, including Windows, macOS, Unix, etc. It works with any language of your choice, including PHP, Python, Java, C, Ruby.

Custom build environments and language support with CircleCI

  • You can use a pre built docker image provided by CircleCI, or you may choose your own Docker Hub image as the runtime environment.
  • It supports a wide range of languages, including PHP, Python, Java, Javascript.

GitLab vs CircleCI - What’s the Difference Conclusion

Thank you so much for reading about GitLab vs CircleCI – What’s the Difference ? I hope I have helped

We can say that CircleCI and Gitlab server offer many great features that are recommended when choosing the right tool for your business needs. We know that GitLab has a lot of features but it’s more expensive than CircleCI. On the other hand CircleCI has a modern user interface but it is not as secure as GitlabCI. It is also possible to integrate these two tools with BrowserStack.

In conclusion, all the two CI / CD tools perform very well with the main functions assigned to them. The main differences are their specific features, which have been described above. There are many different solutions, but these specific characteristics set them apart. Makes each of the tools perfect for specific use cases, depending on your own needs.

Avatar for Kamil Wisniowski
Kamil Wisniowski

I love technology. I have been working with Cloud and Security technology for 5 years. I love writing about new IT tools.

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