19 Free Open-source Bug and Issues tracking and management solutions

19 Free Open-source Bug and Issues tracking and management solutions

Bug management or issue tracking software packages are a crucial development tool for software testing. It helps them to keep track or software bugs and issues, prioritize them and deliver fixes for issues.

A large software may have hundreds or even thousands of bugs which require active monitoring, debugging, reporting and resolving.

In this article we collected a useful batch of open-source bug and issue tracking software which work for teams, software companies and solo developers.

The software packages we collected share some similar features, but some come with different management paradigm and unique features that we will highlight.

Some may say, this type of projects is old and obsolete, mainly because they have been around for more than a decade, but the truth is: many project management software are already packed with bugs management and issues tracking features. You can check it in the following article.

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Open-source bug and issue tracking software

1- MantisBT

MantisBT (Mantis Bug Tracker) is one of the oldest open-source bugs tracking and management solution out there.  MantisBT comes with dozens of features that promote collaboration among software developers, testers, project managers and clients.

It features email notifications, advanced access management, Excel and CSV exports, reporting, report print, anonymous mode, RSS feed, bug classification and filtering (Severity, Category, Status), forum view, attachments, comments, permalink, road map and quick bug reporting.

MantisBT is built with PHP and uses MySQL as a database backend.

2- Lavagna  

Lavagna is  a simple Kanban-style task management system that promote team collaboration and boost productivity. It is an open-source equivalent for Trello which is popular among  software development teams and companies.

Lavagna features multi-project setup, multiple login providers (Twitter, GitHub, GitLab), LDAP support and custom OAuth provider. The multi-OAuth provider makes it ideal for enterprise that require software to be integrated with their IAM system.

3- Flyspray


Flyspray is an open-source self-hosted web system for bug tracking and issues management. It is built using PHP and supports MySQL and PostreSQL databases.

Flyspray or as its developer describe it: The bug killer, is packed with a rich set of features that starts with an easy install, multiple projects support, multi-channel notification systems, file attachments, comments, advanced search system, reporting, history and backlog, built-in voting system, custom status configuration, roadmap, activity bars, RSS/ Atom feeds and more.

Furthermore, Flyspray offers an optional Single Sign-on support using OAuth which makes it a top choice for enterprise that require such feature.

Flyspray : Flyspray: The bug killer!
The bug killer!

4- Bugzilla

Bugzilla is a free open-source software development package for software development teams. It helps teams to improve their communication, production flow, customer satisfaction, product quality and boost productive.

The system features a rich ecosystem which contain dozens of add-ons and utilities. You can find desktop clients, browser integrations, mail clients integrations, IDE integration  dozens of other server-side tools like chatbots, case management systems and extensions.

Bugzilla started back in 1998 and still used by many developers and teams around the world.

5-  The Bug Genie https://thebuggenie.com/

The Bug Genie

The Bug Genie is yet another bug management system for teams. It supports different agile processes like Scrum and Kanban, offers an integrated source control system, multiple custom workflows, project wiki, custom dashboards and one-click bug reporting.

Additionally, The Bug Genie offers a rich modular system with a developer-friendly API and command-line tools.

Another unique feature this cool software has is its ability to support multiple hosted installations on a single setup.

It is also enterprise-ready solutions because its features, built-in LDAP support,  external authentication support for 3rd-party services and other OAuth2-supported services.

6- Fossil

Fossil is an open-source full-featured software development management package for teams. Bug tracking and management is one feature of many for this cool software as it is primarily focused on project management, distributed version control integration (Git and Mercurial),  and communication among team members with several options.

Fossil is formed of a command-line app, and a web-based self-hosted system that can be installed using a single standalone executable binary for Linux and macOS.

The project is licensed under BSD license.

7- Trac


Trac is a wiki-based system that also being popular for issue tracking and management among developers for about two decades now (started 2003). It offers an interface with Subversion and Git. It uses Wiki markup syntax to describe issues, bugs and create links.

I used Trac on multiple occasions which proven to be a reliable and useful solution especially for software production.


Redmine in Issues Management

If you have been online over a decade ago, you must recognize Redmine, a wiki-style project management built with Ruby on Rails.

It features multiple-project setup, role-based access control, issue tracking system, charts, calendar, documents and file attachments, forums, time tracking, a rich  software version control integration (SVN, CVS, Git, Mercurial and Bazaar), RSS feeds, email notification, multi-lingual support and multiple database support.

Redmine comes with some unique features for a project manager like custom fields for issues, time entries, projects and users,  the ability for users to create issues using their emails, and multiple LDAP authentication support.

Redmine has a large community that supply its vast ecosystem with themes, extensions, plugins and third-party tools.

9- Issue Tracker

Issue Tracker is a new emerging issue and bug tracking and management solution for teams. It is built using Go programming language and offers similar functionalities to Jira bugs management and a useful informative dashboard.

10- WebIssues


WebIssues is a simple web-based issue tracking system for teams. It features, multiple projects setup, folder management, multi-view support, multiple issue attributes, comments, file attachments, reporting, import and export and email notifications.

WebIssues follows the concept of Bugzilla and offers a desktop client version as well as a web version which is a beneficial for developers who favor the desktop client over web interfaces.

WebIssues is released under GNU Affero GPL v3 license and offers packages for Windows, macOS and Linux.  

The system requires PHP5.6  and supports MySQL, MariaDB, PostgreSQL or SQL server database.

Git-based Issue management system

11- Gitblit

Gitlit activity dashboard

Gitlit is an open-source cross-platform Java-based system built to manage, view, and serve Git repositories.  It is considered as an advanced GIT manager with more rich features.

Gitlit allows system admins to manage repos, user accounts, teams through a web user interface. It offers email notification, issue tracking system, markdown support and multi-languages support.

Gitlit comes with several authentication mechanisms which include:  LDAP, Redmine authentication, Windows authentication, RSS feed and rich JSON-API.

It aims for heavy-duty projects and for enterprise developers.

12- TrackDown

TrackDown is a lightweight issue tracking system that uses plain markdown files with Git and Mercurial.  It works seamlessly with GitHub, Gitlab, Bitbucket.

It follows a simple yet a unique workflow that utilize GIT post-commit hook to read and update the issues. It is compatible with Fossil another popular bug tracking management software which you will find in this list.

The main downside for this package is it requires sometime to setup and use. It is also not recommended for inexperienced developers or developers who like everything visualized.

13- Git-issue

Git-issue is a minimal decentralized issues management system which utilize GitHub itself and does not require any backend or dependencies to run and install.  It uses a simple text file format and offers a decentralized asynchronous management system for its users.

14- HuBoard

HuBoard utilizes GitHub issues into a rich productive platform. It features a Kanban board, tags and filters, issues priorities, milestones, and integration support for several services like Slack, Gitter and HipCjat.

HuBoard uses GitHub public API to track, modify and manage GitHub issues.

More Bug Management and Issue Tracking Systems

15- Omega Tracker

Omega Tracker is a simple real-time issue tracker and bug management system. It built with Node.js and features browser notification system, interactive synchronized updates, tags, multiple projects support, and more.

16- Eventum

Eventum is a Symfony built Issue Tracking system for teams. It is fairly a new system with about two dozen developers working on it.

It features issue tracking and management system, multi-language support, email notification, and more.

Unfortunately, there is no enough documentation or demo for it yet, as the developers are busy implementing new features every day.

17- PHPBugTracker

PHPBugTracker a legacy web ibug tracking and management system built as its name suggestes with PHP. It offers multiple project support, email notification, public/ private views, file attachments, history and easy install wizard.

The system requires PHP5.2 or late and MySQL server.

18- SimpleBugs

SimpleBugs is  simple bug tracker built with CodeIgniter the PHP framework. Though, the source is available, and it is easy to install and use, the developer didn't update the project for 9 years.

19- zenTrack


zenTack is an open-source issue tracker system which is no longer maintained or supported. But thanks to Sourceforge.net, we can still download and install it. We listed it here as a reference and an example as well as a piece of history.

Closing Thoughts

As our post came to an end, We hope it will be useful for teams and developers who are looking for such solutions, However, many project management systems which aim for software development have a built-in issue tracking system. So, we advise you to look for the following articles:

12 Open-source free Agile and SCRUM project management solutions
What is Agile project management? Agile project management is a project management approach that values andprioritizes human communication and feedback to deliver a quality product. The project is done in sprints, each sprint is aiming to improve the workflowand productivity by learning from …
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If you know of any other project which is not listed here, please add it in the comments below.

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