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The Redmine Guide

Redmine is the most popular open-source project management tool. You'll find out about the common use cases, why people use Redmine, approaches to issue tracking and project management features.

It's perfect for giving you or your team members a quick introduction to Redmine and what it can do for your team.

1. What Is Redmine?

Redmine helps teams work together.

Redmine is primarily an issue tracker. An issue tracker is a to-do list that's focused on accountability and forward progress on issues, which can be tasks, bugs or requests.

Redmine also includes project management aspects. You can plan out milestones on Gantt charts. You can also use Agile project management techniques such as Scrum or Kanban via Redmine plugins.

A third aspect of Redmine is how you can share ideas. There's a blog for project updates. You can discuss ideas in a forum. You can create a wiki to store knowledge and document projects.

2. Who Makes Redmine?

Redmine is an open-source project. Jean-Philippe Lang released the first version of Redmine in 2006. Since then, a community of open-source developers have expanded and improved upon Redmine. Every day people from around the world work to make Redmine even better.

Open source means you can download, use and re-write the source code. If you see something that is broken, you can contribute a fix or patch to solve the problem.

All of the developers at Planio have contributed to the Redmine core. You'll find more about the project at Redmine.org.

3. What's the Link Between Planio and Redmine?

Planio is based on Redmine with many enhancements. For instance, Planio adds a Helpdesk & CRM, Agile project management features, Git hosting and Team Chat. In addition, many organizations choose Planio for significant cost savings over hosting Redmine themselves. You can read more here about Redmine, Planio, and Open Source.

4. Who Uses Redmine?

Hundreds of thousands of organizations worldwide use Redmine to get more done ranging from Fortune 500 organizations right down to individual freelancers.

Agencies

Redmine and email work well together. That means your clients can continue using email, but you can manage the emails as issues inside of Redmine. You can also create custom roles for your clients, so they can get involved in the discussions in Redmine. This involvement will help reduce conflict and help you work more efficiently with them. We've written more about how you can improve client relationship management with Redmine: Client Relationship Management: Avoiding the Black Box Problem

Startups

It’s very chaotic trying to start a business out of nothing. That’s why many startups use Redmine to organize their efforts. Redmine is a good choice because you can use it to handle software development and you can also handle incoming customer support tickets.

Software Developers

Redmine is uniquely suited for software development. It’s highly integrated with Git and Subversion. The wiki is often used to document software projects. You can even update Redmine issues from the command line using Git commit messages if you set up Redmine correctly or use Planio.

Open Source Projects

You’ll find that open source projects often use Redmine as a way to organize the project. The Ruby programming language is one very high profile project that uses Redmine as its bug tracker.

Universities

Redmine is a favorite for universities as a way of letting students and researchers organize their projects. Examples include The Philipp University of Marburg, which uses Planio as hosted Redmine to organize research projects.

Redmine lets you make certain aspects of your projects public, while keeping other aspects private, which is great for universities that want to involve the public in research projects.

5. Why Do People Use Redmine?

Get in Control

To-do lists get out of hand, and they’re hard to share with others. Issue tracking in Redmine brings teamwork to to-do lists. Redmine lets you have a powerful workflow for getting tasks done and reviewing work. You can discuss problems and find solutions with others.

Keep Information in One Place

The wiki lets you create documentation for software, work practices and more. You can store important files in one place.

Collaborate Through Discussion

You have an idea? The forums let you discuss it publicly with your team members. You make announcements via the blog.

Accessible from Anywhere

Redmine is accessible anywhere you have an Internet connection.

6. Issue Tracking

Issue tracking is core to Redmine. Most of your day-to-day work in Redmine will revolve around creating, updating and closing issues. You'll find more about issues here: Issue Tracking in Redmine

  1. Creating Issues
  2. Updating Issues
  3. Creating Issues from Email
  4. The Issue List
  5. Custom Queries
  6. How Do You Use Issues?

7. Project Management with Redmine

Redmine offers much more than just issue tracking. It also lets you track the progress of your projects, monitor how much time tasks are taking and visualize the end date.

There’s three different ways to track and manage projects in Redmine.

The Roadmap

You can divide up your project into various milestones. You can then see how far along each chunk is. You can also dig down into which tasks are holding up reaching a particular milestone, and you can also see the time spent on the milestone.

Gantt Chart

This will let you visualize the different aspects. An issue will only appear on the Gantt chart if you enter a start and finish date for that issue.

Agile Project Management

This doesn’t come with Redmine core, but you can add it via plugins. A good example is the Redmine Agile plugin. We include this plugin by default at Planio. It lets you use agile techniques or the scrum framework. The issues will then appear on a Kanban-style board. You can drag-n-drop the issues around depending on their status. You'll find more in this guide on agile project management.

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