List of pro's - JIRA vs Redmine

Added by Stefan H Singer almost 4 years ago

I'm not REALLY comfortable posting this for some reason, but I was asked and it's somehow the least I can do.

I got asked at work to compile a list of pro's of the two products when compared with each other. This is just from personal experience and nothing official in any way, but feel free to chime in, especially with more pro's for JIRA. This is what I wrote, and keep in mind, this is aimed at the people making the decisions. And oh, I've used JIRA on and off even this year (when working in projects where they already used it), but I forgot to write that when composing my work e-mail :)


I've used JIRA extensively for a few years, on fairly large projects involving up to 40 c++ developers and 18-24 months completion time. I will here try to explain what the pro's and con's, from my point of view, with JIRA and Redmine are and why I think Redmine is the better choice.

Of course, it's been about two years since I stopped using Jira, so it might've changed, for better or worse :)

There's not really much of a point in going into what features they have compared to each other, because really, you can usually do the same thing in JIRA as you can in Redmine.

Redmine pro's
  • It's open source and completely free to use.
  • Wiki for each project out of the box.
  • Per project user forums.
  • Better performance when properly deployed (in my experience).
  • Fewer clicks to get stuff done (mind you, Redmine isn't great at this, but I find JIRA being much worse).
  • Better UI (JIRA is fairly confusing compared to other issue trackers, bugzilla excluded, in my opinion).
  • SCM integration out of the box. Easy to set up (SVN, CVS, Git, Mercurial, Bazaar and Darcs). Back when I used JIRA, the SCM integration often broke down for some reason and we had to wait for Atlassian (or the plug-in vendor) to fix it.
  • Easier, but still far from perfect, time logging in issues.
  • If you need new functionality, you can implement it yourself or ask a paid developer to make a plugin for you. Several in the core development team also take on projects from Redmine users.
  • Same goes for bugfixing. As far as I can tell, you can get a bug fixed really quickly, if you just pay someone to do it.
  • It integrates with all our different AD's (our install authenticates GBG, MIA and BLD users), not sure if Jira does this.
  • E-mail integration (creating issues, getting notified of issues and issue changes, commenting on and updating issues) is easy to set up.
  • Clean support for sub-projects (we usually have each client as a project, then different projects as sub-projects, and sometimes, even sub-projects there, if the project is big).
  • Possible to do budgeting and in-voice reports if we want to.
  • Possible to do resource (people) planning / scheduling if we want to.
JIRA pro's
  • Backed up by a big company (though, in my experience, they're really slow at fixing bugs when you really need them fixed :)) which delivers support for their product.
  • IDE integration if someone needs that, I've never used it so I really don't know how good it is.

Replies (23)

RE: List of pro's - JIRA vs Redmine - Added by Nils Linde almost 4 years ago

No way JIRA has so few pro's! My boss wants me to set up JIRA as it is used by many large companies in my country, and she has worked with JIRA at previous job, that is why she thinks JIRA is the THING. Additionally, she states "Any commerical and licensed product will get more support and will be more polished and tuned, more affected by user experience etc, just beacuse it is commerical product. No free-software can be like that.". It is hard to disagree with any boss statement, but now, I am trying to set up Redmine, to try it first, before implementing JIRA in my company (we have now self-made problem/issue/project system, that I need to update). I don't like JIRA, eaven from first looks, not mentioning that it is closed-source, so no improvments can be made, if needed...

RE: List of pro's - JIRA vs Redmine - Added by Stefan H Singer almost 4 years ago

Feel free to add more pro's.

JIRA is, imho, less polished/has a worse user experience, and a few years back, the support was worse. It might've changed, but I wouldn't count on it.

Just compare the different themes for Redmine with how JIRA looks. It doesn't exactly favor JIRA.

RE: List of pro's - JIRA vs Redmine - Added by Nils Linde almost 4 years ago

BTW, It looks like, that lowest price for starter pack is for 10 concurrent users, there is no limit to user quantity of accounts.

RE: List of pro's - JIRA vs Redmine - Added by Stefan H Singer almost 4 years ago

Nils Linde wrote:

BTW, It looks like, that lowest price for starter pack is for 10 concurrent users, there is no limit to user quantity of accounts.

How so? The Licensing & Pricing page states that "Licensing fees are quoted per number of 'active users'. An active user in JIRA is by definition any user account in the system with the "JIRA Users" global permission, i.e. anyone who can log in. Unlimited 'anonymous users' are permitted on all licenses."

And, for what it's worth, if you'd compare anything but the fully featured version of JIRA with Redmine, the number of Pro's for Redmine would increas a LOT.

RE: List of pro's - JIRA vs Redmine - Added by Nils Linde almost 4 years ago

I am now going through JIRA, as I have reached limits of understanding Redmine possibilities... As I am newbie to both solutions, I will give things, that is unconvinient for me, as I have not used to anything and have not worked with any of solutions for more than couple weeks.

Redmine CONS:
  • Building of reports is limited to filtering options. Redmine is concentrating more on issues and projects, than employees and users. It is hard for managers to get reports about user/employee load, job done, graphs and charts about work progress, and other sorts of reports.
  • No notification Schemes. Only possible to notify about changes, no escalation. Only plugin adds possiblity to notify assigned users, which is poorly configurable.
  • No issue Security Schemes. Not possible to define, which issue trackers can be seen for each role.
  • Not possible to start issue from project and select subproject to which issue is related. You need to browse to specified project, only then, start an issue.
  • Estimated time for issue has poor functionallity. JIRA allows to write eaven in 3w 4d 12h format.
  • Most of fields in Redmine have no autofill/Ajax based.
  • Custom fields have only 7 types. JIRA allows 23 types, including possibility to create "User Picker" and many multi-level fields.
  • Activity logs have no filters/tabs, you can't see all activity on current issue in one page
  • Can't comment on issues
  • Not possible to set conditions to control who can perform a issue status change, and under what circumstances
  • No screen configuration, that can be used to select which fields will appear when this screen is displayed, and how the fields are split between tabs. Each issue status can have different screen at JIRA.
Redmine CONS that are secondary:
  • Look and feel is not optimized. Most of stuff could be created using less space in page.
  • Cant set issue reporter manually
  • No multilanguage issue types, althou JIRA only gives chanse to choose from pre-defined languages, that are not many (not my native language included).
  • No issue icons, that increases readability.
  • No keyboard shortcuts
  • Redmine documentation is pretty weak, not everything is described, althou, most of everything is easy understandable, but for some specific tasks, there is no documentation and community is not so active to respond on requests.
JIRA CONS:
  • Hard to understand user interface, workflow creation process, customization is possible, but need to go through many steps. So many options that you can get easely confused.
  • Modifications made is not showing up stright away. You cant edit active workflow, e.g. the workflow that is assigned to any project, that makes customization harder. Overall customization, althou is done only at system productions state, is pretty hard and time consuming.
  • Not possible to create sub-projects, only components, that only shares part of main-project functionallity
JIRA CONS that are secondary:
  • Closed source, you only depend on existing functions and possibility, that company will include functionallity, that you lack
  • JIRA is pretty slow and massive. Most of functionallity, that is not needed for user of system, cant be disabled, you need dig through all unnessesary stuff, if there is such.
  • Althou JIRA documentation is vast and strong, filled with tutorials, you realy need docs, to use JIRA, the system is so complex that you need to read docs almost for every customization task and eaven then, some views are hard to understand.

Most of them are minior cons, but still, if you need to work with system every day, that small stuff can make life lot easier or harder...

To be continued...

RE: List of pro's - JIRA vs Redmine - Added by Stefan H Singer almost 4 years ago

I'm gonna comment on a few, the rest I agree with :)

Building of reports is limited to filtering options. Redmine is concentrating more on issues and projects, than employees and users. It is hard for managers to get reports about user/employee load, job done, graphs and charts about work progress, and other sorts of reports.

Looked at the different reporting plugins? There's "reports", "graphs" and a few others. If you use the "reports" plugin together with "schedules", "graphs" and the "time tracker" plugin I think you'll get a lot of the features you're after.

Not possible to start issue from project and select subproject to which issue is related. You need to browse to specified project, only then, start an issue.

How do you mean? If you're at the issue list of a project, that list includes the issues from sub-projects and you can just right-click an issue to change its status.

No issue Security Schemes. Not possible to define, which issue trackers can be seen for each role.

Agreed. For me, this is very minor, since we just use different sub-projects instead. Comparing to JIRA is hard, since JIRA doesn't at all have the same sub-project functionality.

Activity logs have no filters/tabs, you can't see all activity on current issue in one page

http://www.redmine.org/issues/6843 <- how do you mean? what activity is missing? time log entries?

Can't comment on issues

Huh? Just choose 'update' on an issue and enter a comment?

Not possible to set conditions to control who can perform a issue status change, and under what circumstances

Isn't that what you do when you edit the workflow?

No screen configuration, that can be used to select which fields will appear when this screen is displayed, and how the fields are split between tabs. Each issue status can have different screen at JIRA.

Not sure I get this. You can store global issue queries, doesn't that kind of solve the same problem, but in a different way?

Look and feel is not optimized. Most of stuff could be created using less space in page.

Use a different theme.

No issue icons, that increases readability.

Just a matter of using the right theme as far as I know. I've seen themes with issue icons.

RE: List of pro's - JIRA vs Redmine - Added by Nils Linde almost 4 years ago

That was more like comparison, than problems, that I encountered with...
The things that my company needs, are escalation (email notifications at specific conditions) and reports (havent dug so deep into plugins, just ran twice through plugin list, downloaded some, set up, tuned, now going to next test subject - JIRA).
If theese two things could be solved in no-time, I would push my boss, to use Redmine instead of JIRA... I dont realy like closed stuff, but I realy like stuff, that is optimized and tuned using user-experience, and sadly, most of such things are met only on commercial software... Redmine "does the job", but at first look, it is hard to notice, that developers have thought about look'n'feel of it... Althou, most of companies realy dont care how this stuff looks'n'feels, users do and some stupid analysts like me :P

RE: List of pro's - JIRA vs Redmine - Added by Stefan H Singer almost 4 years ago

Examples of at what e-mail notifications you'd need? I'm interested :)

Also you should consider looking at the themes available (for instance http://www.redmine.org/wiki/redmine/ThemeBasecamp http://www.pixel-cookers.com/2010/03/05/theme-redmine-pixel-cookers/ and http://www.modula.fi/2009/redmine-theme-modula-mojito/). I don't see how anyone can consider the JIRA user experience and "look'n'feel" better than Redmines.

RE: List of pro's - JIRA vs Redmine - Added by Nils Linde almost 4 years ago

X and Y ar workers at deparment, which manager is M and he has a boss B. And there is another department with workers G and H, with manager K, his boss too, is B.
If manager K gives an issue into system, sets assigned user X (technican, responsible for fixing/dealing bug/issue), then X gets a notification, that he has new issue in system, that needs to be dealt with.
For example, after a week, that issue still is not dealt with. System sends notification to X about that. No changes has been done to issue, after 3 more days, manager of issue dealing department M gets notification, that there is issue, that X is ignoring or have not dealt with for any other reason. Nothing happens for more 2 days. Boss B gets notification that X havent solved problem, manager M have not made any modifications to issue.
Depending on priority, tracker/issue type and other parameters, notifications, delays and other stuff should be changed.
That is what we call "escalation".
There is Whining plugin, that allows to send notifications to assigned user and days of incativity can be changed, depending on priorities. That is not enough... There is no possible way to create departments'n'managers system. Redmine lacks possibility to create hierarchy and set leader/manager for user groups. This stuff could be used in other applications too...

RE: List of pro's - JIRA vs Redmine - Added by Stefan H Singer almost 4 years ago

Ah yes, that would need a new plugin (which you of course could pay for and get developed if you wanted it for redmine). The Notification and Whining plugin would solve the problem partially, but not completely.

It should however be a plugin imho, and not a core functionality. So I guess that the "issue escalation notification" is the deal-breaker for you? Do the reports and graphs plugin solve that problem for you?

RE: List of pro's - JIRA vs Redmine - Added by Nils Linde almost 4 years ago

Yes, "issue escalation notification" is the deal-breaker.
Ah, and Reports too... Now I am searching for plugins you mentioned to test them. I found schedules, but not reports, can you give me a link?

BTW, pixel-cookers theme is quite nice, but it is incompleate and CSS needs much editing, before icons, that are included, can be seen. Thats not the problem for me (just time consuming), but I think, for others it would be... Additionally, there is no icons for main-menu items, that I need to search in net manually...

RE: List of pro's - JIRA vs Redmine - Added by Stefan H Singer almost 4 years ago

Now that I look around, the only place where I can find reports is in Eric Davis github repository :)

https://github.com/edavis10/redmine_reports

But since it's hosted there I guess it's ok to use it even if it's not "released" yet.

RE: List of pro's - JIRA vs Redmine - Added by Stefan H Singer almost 4 years ago

Another JIRA pro: The "dashboards" (kind of like having multiple "my page" pages) has better widgets and customizable layout. If there was Redmine a plugin that could give you good issue statistics graphs etc for projects you're involved in, your own issues etc, that would make up for a lot.

RE: List of pro's - JIRA vs Redmine - Added by Diego Felipe almost 4 years ago

Does 'Reports' and 'Graph' plugins are compatible with version 1.x.x? Because 'Schedule' is not.

The old plugin list is gone.
The new list does not include them, but it seems more updated than the old one.

RE: List of pro's - JIRA vs Redmine - Added by Diego Felipe almost 4 years ago

I forgot to mention.
Reports are very important to my company too.

I managed to create tons of custom trackers so I can generate some "reports" through custom queries.
However its pretty basic and far away from the ideal.

We are thinking about export the Redmine database in some kind of data warehouse and then build an OLAP application.
Doing this we can have unlimited reports possibilities.

RE: List of pro's - JIRA vs Redmine - Added by Stefan H Singer almost 4 years ago

Reports and Graphs work just fine here. But I'm on Redmine 1.0.2.

RE: List of pro's - JIRA vs Redmine - Added by Alex Last almost 4 years ago

Nils Linde wrote:

Redmine CONS:
  • Building of reports is limited to filtering options. Redmine is concentrating more on issues and projects, than employees and users. It is hard for managers to get reports about user/employee load, job done, graphs and charts about work progress, and other sorts of reports.

you can load Redmine tasks into Microsoft project using this open-source free product: http://code.google.com/p/redmine-connect
:) - and then see any kind of reports you want.

It also supports Jira (no subtasks, though - due to Jira's SOAP API limitations).

RE: List of pro's - JIRA vs Redmine - Added by Diego Felipe almost 4 years ago

Alexey Skor wrote:

Nils Linde wrote:

Redmine CONS:
  • Building of reports is limited to filtering options. Redmine is concentrating more on issues and projects, than employees and users. It is hard for managers to get reports about user/employee load, job done, graphs and charts about work progress, and other sorts of reports.

you can load Redmine tasks into Microsoft project using this open-source free product: http://code.google.com/p/redmine-connect
:) - and then see any kind of reports you want.

It also supports Jira (no subtasks, though - due to Jira's SOAP API limitations).

You still have to create tasks for things that you were not supposed to.
Like:
which users are members of a project?
what are the projects that a member is part of?
And so on...

RE: List of pro's - JIRA vs Redmine - Added by Xagyg Wulf over 3 years ago

JIRA doesn't handle multi-level projects, Redmine does. That was enough for us to decide on Redmine.

RE: List of pro's - JIRA vs Redmine - Added by Orcun Gok over 3 years ago

We are using Redmin for issue tracking we were not happy with the versions before 0.9 but after version 1.0 we really loved redmine.

Few week before, we have decided to give a try to Jira/Confluence/Crudible/FishEye/Crowd products of atlassian. (With 10 dollars goest to charity promotion) We bought them and started to deploy. However their installation, configuration and maintanance is a mess. We could not installed them properly. Each product have its own non-regular requirements. Some of the products can not work as windows service (becouse of a bug or something) and they are running in administrator account. But I have forgot that and logout from the server now. All of the user management system is not working right now. (So does jira, confluence and crudible) Products have many small problems like that and it became like configuring a very low level linux distro. (Google it. Find solution. Give it a try. Not working. Fing other solutins. Etc.) Each product consumes 256mb of ram. So 1 gb of server memory is allocated to those products which is a big waste. I can not figure out some thing that a simple issue tracker can consumes that amount of memory.

Out project manager is not happy with jira right now. He can not track time and user interface is very clumsy. Confluence is useles becouse its editor is problematic and it does not work on internet explorer 9.

To sum up we have decided to continue on redmine because it is really better product. It does not have fancy stuff (which are useless and hard to configure at jira) but it is a good and complete issue tracker. It works well and all of the major functionalily that our team need is build in available and working without a problem.

So in my oppinium redmine is better and more productive software for both it, development and project management teams.

RE: List of pro's - JIRA vs Redmine - Added by Matt Doar about 2 years ago

Disclosure: I've been part of the JIRA and Atlassian community for years and make my living consulting on Atlassian tools at CustomWare. I haven't used Redmine more than as a demo.

Atlassian haven't allowed JIRA to stagnate in the last two years - lots of features in each of the 3 or 4 releases per year.

So many options that you can get easely confused.

Tell me about it! I wrote a couple of O'Reilly books about JIRA to help with this, e.g. Practical JIRA Administration. But lots of people do set up JIRA and use it quite happily. The best bit for me is how configuration is preserved over updates without having to change source code.

Not possible to create sub-projects, only components, that only shares part of main-project functionallity

There is the Structure plugin that does this now

~Matt

RE: List of pro's - JIRA vs Redmine - Added by Alexander Tarasevich about 2 years ago

http://www.easyredmine.com
Very nice addon 4 redmine. Using Redmine more than two years, were going to move to JIRA. Fortunatly, found that product.
Now seriously considering buying it instead of JIRA.

RE: List of pro's - JIRA vs Redmine - Added by Daniel Felix 9 months ago

Well a good IDE support could be handled by TeamCity (http://www.jetbrains.com/teamcity/) which would be helpful.

I'm not a friend of the easyredmine stuff. It creates many incompatibility with other plugins. Mainly the system is just compatible with the easyredmine plugins which are in some cases just commercial plugins. This is not the best way for opensource software, to get a commercial overlay.

TeamCity is even something commercial, but it doesn't manipulate Redmine, it uses his API interface as expected.

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