Microsoft Is Said to Have Agreed to Acquire Coding Site GitHub


As Nadella increasingly moves the company away from complete dependence on the Windows operating system to more in-house development on Linux, the company needs new ways to connect with the broader developer community.

GitHub supplies coding tools for developers and calls itself the world's largest code host with more than 28 million developers using its platform. That said, the price seems right for what GitHub is, so it wouldn't surprise me if that was what Microsoft paid.

In 2017, Microsoft had about 1,300 employees actively pushing code to 825 top repositories on GitHub, officials said, compared to Google with 900 employees contributing to about 1,100 repositories, and Amazon with 134 employees pushing code to 158 top projects.

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In August, GitHub announced that it was looking for a CEO to replace Chris Wanstrath, one of the company's co-founders.

Microsoft past year shut down CodePlex, its own rival for GitHub, saying the latter was the dominant location for open source sharing and that most such projects had already migrated there. One thing that will definitely happen if this acquisition goes through is GitHub's infrastructure moving to Microsoft's Azure cloud computing service. "But even before Steve left, Microsoft had already embraced the [open-source] concept and Satya Nadella is a big believer, so today, those concerns are largely unfounded". Microsoft says that the service will continue to run independently, and will retain its "developer ethos". GitHub is critical for developers as it's the primary vehicle for them to collaborate and share ideas. The price of the acquisition was $7.5 billion in Microsoft stock. The news comes after days of speculation about the deal. "For Microsoft it means that it now owns an asset which matters to most developers". The site stores valuable code for thousands of developers and companies, and also can track major trends in the software industry.

"In other words, not only should sceptics not be anxious about Microsoft unduly favouring their own platforms, they should also be excited that, more than any other potential acquirer, Microsoft is likely to push the individual and community aspects that make GitHub so unique". We don't want that.