Top 10 Open Source Web-Based Project Management Software

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This is a user contributed article.

Project management software is not just for managing software based project. It can be used for variety of other tasks too. The web-based software must provide tools for planning, organizing and managing resources to achieve project goals and objectives. A web-based project management software can be accessed through an intranet or WAN / LAN using a web browser. You don’t have to install any other software on the system. The software can be easy of use with access control features (multi-user). I use project management software for all of our projects (for e.g. building a new cluster farm) for issue / bug-tracking, calender, gantt charts, email notification and much more.

Obviously I’m not the only user, the following open source software is used by some of the biggest research organizations and companies world wild. For example, NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory uses track software or open source project such as lighttpd / phpbb use redmine software to keep track of their projects.

You use the following top 10 software for personal or business use. Keep track of all your projects in one place and finish them successfully on time.

#1: Codendi

Codendi is an open-source collaborative development platform offered by Xerox. From only one interface, it gathers, all the needed tools for software development teams: management and versioning of code, bugs, requirements, documents, reporting, tests etc. It is mainly used for managing software project processes.

#2: Redmine

Redmine is a flexible project management web application. Written using Ruby on Rails framework, it is cross-platform and cross-database. It includes calendar and gantt charts to aid visual representation of projects and their deadlines.

#3: ProjectPier

ProjectPier is a Free, Open-Source, self-hosted PHP application for managing tasks, projects and teams through an intuitive web interface. ProjectPier will help your organization communicate, collaborate and get things done Its function is similar to commercial groupware/project management products, but allows the freedom and scalability of self-hosting.

#4: Trac

Trac is an open source, web-based project management and bug-tracking tool. Trac allows hyperlinking information between a computer bug database, revision control and wiki content. It also serves as a web interface to a version control system like Subversion, Git, Mercurial, Bazaar and Darcs.

#5: Project HQ

Project HQ is a collaborative open source project management tool, similar to Basecamp and activeCollab. Project HQ is built on open source technologies like Python, Pylons and SQLAlchemy and is fully database independent. Project HQ uses a structured workflow to assist you in managing your projects.

#6: Collabtive

Collabtive is a web-based project management software that is being published as Open Source software. The project was started in November 2007. It strives to provide an Open Source alternative to proprietary tools like Basecamp or ActiveCollab.

#7: eGroupWare

eGroupWare is a free open source groupware software intended for businesses from small to enterprises. Its primary functions allow users to manage contacts, appointments, projects and to-do lists.

It is used either via its native web-interface, making access platform-independent, or by using different supported groupware clients, such as Kontact, Novell Evolution, or Microsoft Outlook. It can also be used by mobile phone or PDA via SyncML.

#8: KForge

KForge is an open-source (GPL) system for managing software and knowledge projects. It re-uses existing best-of-breed tools such as a versioned storage (subversion), a tracker (trac), and wiki (trac or moinmoin), integrating them with the system’s own facilities (projects, users, permissions etc). KForge also provides a complete web interface for project administration as well a fully-developed plugin system so that new services and features can be easily added.

#9: OpenGoo

It is a complete online solution focused on improving productivity, collaboration, communication and management of your teams. OpenGoo main features include document management, contact management, e-mail, project management, and time management. Text documents and presentations can be created and edited online. Files can be uploaded, organized and shared, independent of file formats.

#10: ClockingIT

ClockingIT is a free Project Management solution, which helps your team stay focused and on top of things.

Ed: The following two paragraphs added by Vivek Gite:

I also use project management software to keep track of how much time I spent per client and project.

My Personal Choice

redmine is my personal choice because I like to use ruby on rails and I often work with small teams. We track networking issues, data center issues, capacity planning, trouble tickets and much more using redmine. I can track multiple projects and its flexible role-based access control make sure only authorized eyes can view the details.

Other FOSS Project Management Software Projects

  1. JotBug
  2. Bugzilla (only bug tracking)
  3. OpenProj (desktop app – replacement for MS-project)

How do you manage your IT / software and other projects? Are you using a better option? Let us know in the comments.

About the author: Rocky Jr., is an engineer with VSNL – a leading ISP / global telecom company and a good friend of nixCraft.

85 comment

  1. We’re currently using Assembla, which supports remote svn/git repositories (including github integration), integrated ticket tracking, collaborative wikis and more. We’ve been very happy with it so far, and best of all it’s free for open source projects! One of the best parts is that they offer RSS feeds for almost everything. So we’ve been able to integrate commit notices into our local IRC channel. I can’t speak for many of the other options (although I’m not a big fan of Trac). But I think Assembla is definitely worth a look.

  2. @Vivek Gite

    Hah, that’s what I get for skimming the article!

    Our team is pretty small (~4 people) but we’ve had a lot of luck with just a local install of MediaWiki and a private IRC channel.

    I’ll have to look into some of the other solutions you mentioned. I haven’t heard of half of them.

  3. I’ve been using Trac for a few years now… I wouldn’t say its the best but it works for me. I like it similarly to why you selected redmine… I like Python. At the same time, I really like the community… I’m on the IRC channel quite often and anytime I ask a question, I typically receive the help I need in a short time.

  4. I dislike rails and ruby, but redMine is plain awesome and I use it to run the Gnucap+ project (http://www.gnucapplus.org/) as well as a lot of commercial software. Best project management for software out there.

    I wonder why it doesn’t seem to get much press or use? It makes thi trac, mantis, and bugzilla look ancient.

  5. @Tristan, heh

    yeah, that makes sense. Lots of people who works from home (just an example) use one of those web based hosted project for a small amount of monthly fee.

    @nick, community makes real difference with open source software.

  6. We’re using wrike.com. It’s not open source, but we don’t need open source. We’re quite happy with wrike, as it has several really cool features like gantt charts with drag and drop support and email engine, that lets you create tasks with attachements from emails and sends you interactive to-do lists. One more cool thing, it charges per user, not per project.

  7. One of the best I’ve found (and I try a lot) is DotProject (http://www.dotproject.net) it’s FOSS and built for PHP/MySQL without stringent prerequisites. We’re using it to manage a network infrastructure upgrade project for a large school system (2 years – 18 million) and it performs very well and there’s a wonderful community behind it. There has been a recent fork – web2Project that I am very interested in since it improves a great deal on some of the most useful components of the original project. I recommend either application for anyone needing a serious web based project management system.

    1. dotproject is really good and I use it for many kinds of projects :
      software development
      procurement
      civil engineering
      electronics design

      And a good desktop project management software is openproj.

  8. Many businesses consider project tracking as part of each project plan where management reviews staffing requirements, status on key milestones and cost overruns for one project.

    I think its the wrong approach; it should be all projects for the business should use the same Project Tracking process to monitor all projects. (as standalone project and in comparison to other projects within the business).

    What is the best Project Tracking/Time Reporting system?

  9. I see James’ point – there are many different ways to accomplish project management goals and lots of different applications to support the effort. Although not free or open source LiquidPlanner (http://www.liquidplanner.com) is worth a look because of the innovative and dynamic way in balances task loads.

    As for consolidation of all of the projects into one system; I believe that an ERP application would better fit the overall management needs of a business. We split our projects up because our clients have access to their information and use the collaborative features of the system.

    DotProject allows task level tracking, human resource allocation, and timed task logs – as does web2Project.

  10. I work with Codendi and I have to say it is a powerful software with a strong tracker. There was a lack of project management tools but with the 3.6 and 4.0 releases it offers services as graphs and dashboards. It is a good point. It is not a famous software but I encourage you to keep an eye on it.

  11. Although shared hosting is a less expensive way for businesses to create a Web presence, it is usually not sufficient for Web sites with high traffic. These sites need a dedicated Web server, either provided by a Web hosting service or maintained in-house. With shared hosting, numerous web sites are sharing a single server.

  12. If you’d like a tool for managing your time and projects, you can use this application inspired by David Allen’s GTD:

    http://www.Gtdagenda.com

    You can use it to manage and prioritize your goals, projects and tasks, set next actions and contexts, use checklists, schedules and a calendar.
    A mobile version is available too.

  13. This sounds right on!. Quality knowledge work is more about decentralized decision making . The better project management tools are web based and collaborative.

  14. OpenWorkbench (http://www.openworkbench.org/) is another great candidate, and much superior to OpenProj, in my experience. OpenWorkbench is descended from Project Workbench, which was a real competitor to MS Project back in the ’90s.

    Open Workbench is still being developed; OpenProj is pretty much dead in the water: no source code available and nothing happening/supported by the new owners, Serena.

    Open Workbench will automatically level your tasks; OpenProj will not, and that one issue is the difference that makes the difference.

  15. A number of valuable web based software solutions are available online; which can improve the operation of a busy office or practice.

    To combat the loss in revenues, resulting from missed meetings and appointments (to both clients and practioners), some professionals have utilized a web based room scheduling software or appointment scheduling software; to monitor client meetings and appointments.

    Email reminders will reduce no-shows and self-scheduling clients can book their own meetings or appointments online.

    In addition, it frees up time for Professionals to concentrate on other areas of their workload; online or in the office.

    Thank you for sharing your knowledge and insight.

    Best wishes.

  16. So many project management softwares on a single blog. I am really amazed to see the list of such great project management softwares. Really great stuff posted by the author.

  17. I really like your information about Top 10 Open Source Web-Based Project Management Software. We know that every company has their own way of managing work flow and projects, with their own objectives and desired results. Now a days people are used online project management software to make their work flow easy and systematic.

  18. I persoanlly checked out some of these tools for my projects and they worked just fine and I did not have to face any difficulties using any one of them.

  19. Hi Vivek

    We are the people behind ]project-open[, an open-source project management application/ PSA (Professional Services Automation) ranked around #100-200 on SourceForge.

    The main difference between your Top 10 and our application is financial functionality including controlling and invoicing, that is included in ]po[.

    May I ask if you: Would you consider ]po[ as a candidate for your list, or would you see it in a different category?

    Cheers!
    Frank

  20. For software project management please consider:

    Endeavour Software Project Management is an Open Source solution to manage the creation of large-scale enterprise systems in an iterative and incremental development process. It features support for Use Case management, Iterations, Project Plan, Change Requests, Defect Tracking, Test Cases, Tasks, Document management and many other process artifacts.

    http://endeavour-mgmt.sourceforge.net

    1. Thanks for the info. From the demo I can say endeavour is the best software project management software which sticks to the core and only the needed process chain of a software development life-cycle, when compared to others which has many unwanted stuffs. Report generations are really simple and great.

      But I’m struggling to install endeavour on my linux server as ‘m new to web site installation. I couldn’t get any proper directions. Any help is appreciated. Thanks again.

  21. Thanks for this list. I’m so tired of all the forced upgrade “options” a lot of the top web-based products have. Developers should just build software that everyone can use for one price and support it. That’s all we need.

  22. Which is the Open source PM tool for onsite offsite software project management.
    It should be web based and bug free

    Thanks
    Anoop

  23. Subject: Ease of Installation

    Soo, I’m not a developer, but I am a project manager. During my last position, the lead developer set up trac for me and it was very easy to use. I do enjoy the minimalistic approach (I don’t like Basecamp, for instance – not “intuitive” and too gadgety). I’ve been hired for a position managing a few websites, and the rest of the team is remote. I tried installing trac on my mac (10.6) and ran into problems with some of the add ons that I need (installing the upgrades, etc. My question is – what is the best (minimalistic – and by this i mean let me do the intuitive work, I don’t want my software guessing how my intuition works and trying to plan ahead for me. I like things simple and have a deductive brain – software). I want free (ideally) and something that someone ignorant of programming languages (yes, I know it’s time for me to learn) can install and instruct others how to install remotely.

    Thank you!

  24. I’m surprised that your list doesn’t include OpenProj, which uses MS Project file formats.
    http://www.openproj.org/openproj
    The project is managed on the SourceForge site at
    http://sourceforge.net/projects/openproj/files/
    In addition to the source code, there are installers for Windows, MacOS, RedHat/Fedora (rpm), and Debian/Ubuntu (deb).

    OpenProj was developed by Projity, acquired in 2008 by Serena Software. So you can use the open source version (CPAL license) or elect to pay for commercial support and/or the on-demand (cloud) version.

    I have no business connection or financial interest in this project, but think that it deserves to be considered by those looking for an open source project management solution.

  25. please consider: netOffice Dwins

    netOffice Dwins is a free web based time tracking, timesheet, and project management environment. Use netOffice Dwins for employee timesheets, time tracking, and project management. netOffice Dwins allows managing and sharing information about teams, projects, tasks, deadlines. It also allows anyone with an internet connection to enter time and submit it for approval. Approval requests can be routed to managers, project managers, and HR members electronically.

  26. Tine2.0 (www.tine20.org) is another promising product which features a CRM, ERP, task manager, calendar, addressbook and a time tracker.. I like the cleanness of UI and perceived usability of the interface.

  27. qdPM is an emerging player to watch. https://sourceforge.net/projects/qdpm/

    It is ideal for web based projects and handles remote client/remote team easily.

    It is not attempting to be scheduler a la MS Project (at present) so your WBS is not set up with dependencies. You can however set up Phases/Stages etc. based on whatever methodology you are using.

  28. I’m wondering why Chandler and Tracks are not mentioned here. I’m adding this page to my “to-investigate” list. I need to check some of these out. Thx.

  29. I am suprised that nobody has mentioned InDefero – its an open source PHP clone of Google Code, with support for SVN, git, and Mercurial. I have been using it for a couple of months with excellent results. Very easy to set up and use, very simple interface. It doesn’t have a full fledged wiki, but it works great as a web front end to your SCM.

  30. Good choices. My previous company used Jumptree project management, works great but not free. This list provides a good alternative, thanks

  31. I know ProofHub isn’t open source, but does provide a free account type with some of those must-have tools that me and my company always wanted in the PM systems we ever used. The list includes in browser real-time chat with history, proofing tool to help our customers review the designs, graphics without having to download them and put comments in photoshop or mspaint, etc.

  32. Hello,
    Great article. I’ve installed 3 open source collaboration suites but I can not find one that project centric where you can attached everthing including emails to the project. Goal being to have the ability to see everthing that went on in a project including note’s, emails, to-do’s, files, contacts, etc all in a timeline. Any ideas of one that can do this?

    Thanks

  33. Hi Ed, with ]project-open[ you can attach files, notes, to-do’s and contacts to projects. They are currently working on an improved email integration that should be available this summer.

  34. Hi Peter,

    Thank you for the reply. I installed Egroupware, PHPProjekt, and VTiger these are the three I thought would be close to what I was looking for. The UI for Vtiger beats them all, Egroupware coming in second, and last but it accomplishes attaching everything to a project is PHPProjekt, foreign language and slow development. My opinion if you took ProjectPier and merged with Vtiger it would be the perfect system. The ProjectPier has the right concept and Vtiger has the balance of a suite that’s needed and a UI that any employee could figure out.

    My best,
    Ed

  35. Can anyone advise me with a open source program where i can edit and copy project tempplates (like tabels in excel).

    Ive been looking for it for 2 days now and i just cant find anything.

    Thanks

  36. For an Open Source Software Project Management alternative please try

    Endeavour Software Project Management which is an Open Source solution to manage the creation of large-scale enterprise systems in an iterative and incremental development process.

    Currently on 1.5 version. More info at, also provided as On-Demand service.

    http://endeavour-mgmt.sourceforge.net

  37. What software do you guys use to manage clients and all their usernames, FTP details, Server Details, DB details etc. We currently using keepass, but I want something web based.

    1. @Johan: I have read, you can put the keepass data file on a dropbox account and you can access from anywhere. The data file is cross compatible with different OS versions of keepass. You can even access it on a networked WindowsMobile phone or a portable usb version of keepass.

  38. thanks for this,

    I would ideal want something I can download and install on our web server. I am a bit wiery about saving highly secure information on a 3rd party server.

  39. Thanks for sharing. After looking at all provided sites, I just downloaded and installed Feng Office (http://fengoffice.com), aka OpenGoo in your list. The open source community edition can be downloaded for free, is php/mysql based and is running superb with https on my server. Wow I love it, it’s really prefect for me as we working as affiliate webmaster having hundreds of domains to control, to get content and links for and to promote via online partner and banners. Getting all tasks linked to emails, links and documents, it is really great to organize all stuff stuff. Thank you very much – this info made my day!

  40. This is a great list of resources – thanks for putting it together! These types of resources can really help those in need of a strong business organization structure. I wanted to add OnePlace to the list of project management software. Run on ruby on rails, OnePlace integrates project management and team collaboration to increase the success of the individual using it, as well as their business.

  41. Okay, how does one install Redmine on a shared hosting server at HostMonster???
    This is the problem with RoR apps…not as easy to setup compared to PHP apps. Ever heard of the famous 5 minute WordPress install?? Well it’s true!!

  42. I just checked out the video tour of Basecamp and really like its user-friendly interface but would like to find something I can own instead of paying monthly fee’s. I have also worked with ActiveCollab and don’t like its confusing interface.

    I have some questions and would greatly appreciate your input please…

    1) Is there an open source alternative to Basecamp that has a similar user-friendly interface?

    2) And if something exists with a user-friendly interface (like Basecamp); can I install it as easily as I can install a self-hosted WordPress site on my Hostgator account?

    Thank you very much.

    Steve

  43. Thanks for all the work. I am hoping you can point me to a web based project program that has interoperability with Quickbooks Online or another accounting program that is web based. if we have to pay, so be it.

    many thanks!
    M

  44. What a great and informative article. This must have been a lot of work for you. It took me nearly a day to look at each of the possibilities you provided. I can imagine how long it must have taken you to do the initial research.

    Thank you

    Joe

  45. As far as I am concerned, clocking IT was by far the best pick for our small business.
    It is absolutely straightforward AND FREE. It has no extra-flourish, and the interface is pretty nice and very convenient. Just what we needed. Reports, schedules, planning, tasks, team management. All is there not more, nor less.

    If you need a plain team/task manager that is efficient and ergonomic this is the right choice for you. Just create a login and account and start using it right away for your projects/business.

  46. We have been looking for quite some time now for a piece of software that can help us keep track of things. We are three consultants who on a daily basis help our clients. Most of the time there is no scheduling involved – pure ad hoc.

    All the software I can find is either headed towards Project Management – with a lot of tools and controle possibilities – or extremely simple with no time registration.

    Basically what we need is a web-based interface where we can report what we do – for whom and for how long – and a reporting function that makes it easy to bill the clients at the end of the month.

    How come it is so difficult to find a solution?

  47. I am really impressed with the list. It has proved to be very useful. For now i have downloaded all the listed softwares. Will try them and I am sure I will get what I was looking for.
    Thanks to Vivek for putting up this amazing post.

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