GitHub Pages vs Read the Docs: What are the differences?
GitHub Pages: Public webpages freely hosted and easily published. Public webpages hosted directly from your GitHub repository. Just edit, push, and your changes are live; Read the Docs: Create, host, and browse documentation. Read the Docs hosts documentation, making it fully searchable and easy to find. You can import your docs using any major version control system, including Mercurial, Git, Subversion, and Bazaar. We support webhooks so your docs get built when you commit code. There's also support for versioning so you can build docs from tags and branches of your code in your repository.
GitHub Pages can be classified as a tool in the "Static Web Hosting" category, while Read the Docs is grouped under "Documentation as a Service & Tools".
Some of the features offered by GitHub Pages are:
- Blogging with Jekyll
- Custom URLs
- Automatic Page Generator
On the other hand, Read the Docs provides the following key features:
- Github and Bitbucket Integration
"Free" is the top reason why over 283 developers like GitHub Pages, while over 10 developers mention "GitHub integration" as the leading cause for choosing Read the Docs.
Read the Docs is an open source tool with 5.25K GitHub stars and 2.87K GitHub forks. Here's a link to Read the Docs's open source repository on GitHub.
According to the StackShare community, GitHub Pages has a broader approval, being mentioned in 576 company stacks & 683 developers stacks; compared to Read the Docs, which is listed in 9 company stacks and 4 developer stacks.
What is GitHub Pages?
What is Read the Docs?
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We recently needed to rebuild our documentation site, currently built using Jekyll hosted on GitHub Pages. We wanted to update the content and refresh the style to make it easier to find answers.
We considered hosted services that could accept our markdown content, like ReadMe.io and Read the Docs, however both seemed expensive for essentially hosting the same platform we already had for free.
I also looked at the Gatsby Static Site generator to modernize Jekyll. I don't think this is a fit, as our documentation is relatively simple and relies heavily on Markdown. Jekyll excels at Markdown, while Gatsby seemed to struggle with it.
When my SSL cert MaxCDN was expiring on my personal site I decided it was a good time to revamp some things. Since GitHub Services is depreciated I can no longer have #CDN cache purges automated among other things. So I decided on the following: GitHub Pages, Netlify, Let's Encrypt and Jekyll. Staying the same was Bootstrap, jQuery, Grunt & #GoogleFonts.
What's awesome about GitHub Pages is that it has a #CDN (Fastly) built-in and anytime you push to master, it purges the cache instantaneously without you have to do anything special. Netlify is magic, I highly recommend it to anyone using #StaticSiteGenerators.
For the most part, everything went smoothly. The only things I had issues with were the following:
- If you want to point
wwwto GitHub Pages you need to rename the repo to
- If you edit something in the
_config.ymlyou need to restart
bundle exec jekyll sor changes won't show
- I had to disable the Grunt
htmlminmodule. I replaced it with Jekyll layout that compresses HTML for #webperf
Last but certainly not least, I made a donation to Let's Encrypt. If you use their service consider doing it too: https://letsencrypt.org/donate/
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t is integrated with the Jekyll software for static web site and blog generation. The Jekyll source pages for a web site can be stored on GitHub as a Git repository, and when the repository is updated the GitHub Pages servers will automatically regenerate the site.
Our main purpose for GitHub pages is inspecting open source code for the purpose of finding out if someone else has already solved a solution to a problem we're working on and whether or not it fits into our plan.
We take advantage of Githubs very lightweight, but powerful static file hosting for our front-end static files. But we have a CDN in front of this to ensure best performance for users anywhere.