GitHub is a great source control management platform with good CI and integrated, community-oriented collaboration. When it comes to securely managing the lifecycle of software artifacts at scale, across the entire software development lifecycle, most enterprise-grade organizations that are concerned with trusted software supply chains will not be able to solely use GitHub. JFrog is thus a great GitHub alternative for companies looking for end-to-end software supply chain management.
The JFrog Platform, with Artifactory at its core, is focused on managing the flow of software artifacts and the metadata relationships between them, and serves as a single system of record for the entire organization’s software inventory. Key capabilities of the Platform include proxying and caching 3rd party components for consistent, reliable access even across remote locations, as well as comprehensive security scanning that covers both source code and binaries. Moreover, GitHub Packages compared to JFrog Artifactory supports only a fraction of JFrog’s 30 package types with enterprise-grade support. For many organizations, this will inevitably mean setting up separate tools.
Given GitHub’s focus on source control management, their implementation of package management seems like a late add-on after the fact, with limited access control (per-package or per-repository), and no cross-repository artifact sharing between major repository types, which are blockers for many organizations. The JFrog Platform was built to track and store package workflow, approval, and usage metadata; and provide shared visibility with a structure that defines how, who, and where packages can be used.
Despite its similar name, GitHub Advanced Security isn’t all that advanced when compared to JFrog Advanced Security, and offers the most basic of security capabilities. If you’re looking for an alternative to GitHub Advanced Security, it’s likely because GitHub is focused exclusively on scanning dependency manifests in the source code repository, lacking crucial features like context into the finished artifact, prioritization of long lists of vulnerabilities and actionable policies on the artifact workflow, like blocking its download or its release.