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[cross-project-issues-dev] Sunsetting Mattermost

A bit over 6 years ago, we started a test of Mattermost at the Eclipse Foundation [1]. The idea was to offer a modern, open source chat service to Eclipse Foundation projects. Just recall, at that time IRC was the cool stuff.

It is running up until today and I continue to lurk in some channels. Posting questions/answers myself from time to time. The instance has ~3000 users, ~200 channels, and ~50 active users a day. So it looks like people do use it.

Now the problem, from the beginning, was that Mattermost used an “open-core model”. Yes, Mattermost is open source, but things like OAuth2 were not. The reason why we could never pair this with the Eclipse Foundation SSO service. It also gets harder to maintain the instance itself. Mattermost upgrades had always been super trivial. But it feels like the focus is more an “as a service” experience now. And, updating to the most recent “open source version” got trickier over time.

That led to the situation that the instance isn’t up-to-date anymore. Sure, that is something that could be fixed. But the situation also is that a lot of Eclipse projects did adopt services like Slack or Gitter. Which provide a service that projects need and like. And while the “open core” part of Mattermost feels stagnating, other open source communication projects seem to thrive. Most notably Matrix, which supports a federated approach, just like IRC.

The question now is, what is the point in maintaining a communication platform that is practically a silo? If you want a web based service, I think it is fine to just adopt a service the Eclipse Foundation supports, like Slack or Gitter.

And if you are a fan of open source, decentralized services too, maybe check out GitLab issue #1558 [2], because the Eclipse Foundation is looking at Matrix too.

TL;DR – We are sunsetting Mattermost at Eclipse. The goal is to shut down the service mid 2023. As communication is essential, we will not just pull the plug! But we also need to find a way to migrate workload (channels) off the server.

If this causes trouble for you, I apologize. It also causes trouble for me 🙂 Feel free to reach out to me directly (e.g. on Matrix: @ctron@xxxxxxxxxxxx) or comment on GitLab issue #2223 [3]. Of course, you can also reach out to the Eclipse Foundation.

It was the right thing back then, things have changed, let’s adapt.



Jens Reimann
Principal Software Engineer / R&D Product Middleware

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