A modern alternative to Perforce

Keeping the things you like

Perforce was the industrial-strength solution used by leading global companies, especially in games.

Find out here if Plastic is the alternative you need.

The most productive teams

You still need locks and flexibility, don't you?

We have helped many teams find an alternative to Perforce. Chances are you need to modernize your tools, but there are things in P4 you still need, correct?

Locks for files you can't merge

Locks for files you can't merge

You know the Git ecosystem falls short here.

Simplicity for non-coders

Simplicity for non-coders

Just sync what you need with a simple GUI. We call it Gluon mode.

Huge depots and big files

Huge depots and big files

The alternatives shouldn't break when a repo goes past a few gigabytes.

Work centralized

Work centralized

Sometimes you just don't need the extra push.

But, of course, you need a few extras to switch

Switching to something just like Perforce wouldn't make sense. Here is why teams move to Plastic.

Stronger branches and merges

Stronger branches and merges

Streams improved a few things, but they are not as good as Git yet. Plastic is all about task branches and can deal with complex merges.

Implement DevOps

Implement DevOps

This is one of the key reasons behind the migration from Perforce. Mergebots are our DevOps orchestrator solution.

Cloud hosting

Cloud hosting

It is not easy to host P4 in the cloud. Plastic offers a native solution run directly by us.

And still, speed is a big thing, right?

Let us show you some numbers of how Plastic compares to Perforce and Git in terms of pure speed. Because a well-run P4 installation was super fast, and that's something you can't lose.

MEDIUM - 182,749 files 14,852 directories - 7.16GB

The code for the MEDIUM repo is created as follows: linux + mono + openoffice + alienarena + war.dat

Plastic is 5.2 times faster than Perforce Helix Core doing add + checkin.

Plastic is 5.3 times faster than Git consider that Git is checking in locally while Plastic is sending data through the network from client to server.

Performance comparison between Plastic SCM, Perforce and Git

Plastic is 5 times faster than Perforce and Git doing regular submit operations, and twice as fast in syncs.

Read more about performance and scalability here.

A few other improvements in Plastic compared to Perforce

Creating branches in Perforce is slow compared to Plastic

Creating branches in Perforce is slow compared to Plastic

Even with streams, branching large codebases is a problem. This is not an issue in Plastic.

Perforce doesn't version directories

Perforce doesn't version directories

Plastic tracks moves and renames precisely, and it is able to merge them correctly. This makes a huge difference.

Handling local changes is much easier in Plastic

Handling local changes is much easier in Plastic

You need P4 reconcile to find local changes, and it is slow and error prone.

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The concept of branches is radically different

Regular branches in P4 were just directories and that made them unmanageable. Streams impose too many restrictions and can't really show evolution through time. Check the Branch Explorer in Plastic to see how easy it is to understand the evolution.

Discover the reasons to move away from Perforce

Read online the guide to find an alternative to Perforce here

Or grab a copy of the guide in PDF. It is free!

Plastic compared to Perforce

Plastic Perforce Git Subversion
Flexibility
Good to work centralized
Just checkin, no push/pull
Yes Yes No Yes
Good to work distributed
Push/pull + local repo
Yes No Yes Can't do
Binaries
Good with huge repos
Yes Yes No Not really
Good with huge files
Yes Yes No Sometimes
Can lock files to avoid merging
Binaries, art, documents
Yes Yes No Yes
GUI
Visualizes your repos
So that you don't need a PhD in branching
Yes
It's our core strength
Nope Nope Nope
Comes with great GUIs
Yes Well Compare with ours Uh-oh Uh-oh
Special GUI & workflow for artists
And anyone not a coder
Gluon! No No No
Workflow
Can really do task branches
Thousands of branches, no matter what
Yes Nope Core could
Tools??? uh-oh
Nope
Merge
Very good at detecting merges between branches
Yes Not really Yes Painful
Comes with great diff and 3-way merge tools
Super Good
Our job
Yes
But compare with Plastic
No
Go grab one
No
Go grab one
Tools to help you understand the merge (a preview)
Yep Uh-oh What tools? Uh-oh
Good merging renames, moved files, directories, crazy refactors
Yes
My job
No Yes No
Cloud
Can host repos in the cloud
Yes
Plastic Cloud
Some
providers do
Superb
GitHub/Lab/etc.
Some
providers do
Cloud hosting is good with huge repos
Yes No No No
Diff
Can diff code moved across files
Yup No No No
Can show you the history of a method
Yup No No No
You can reach the engineers
Here we are No Try to reach Linus :-P No

Perforce merge capabilities vs Plastic

Plastic Perforce SVN TFS Hg Git
Score 85 55 0 40 40 60
Move/change Yes Issues Fail Yes Yes Yes Issue with complex cases
Change/delete Yes Yes Fail Fail With complex cases Yes Yes
Move/delete Yes Issues with
complex cases
Fail Issues when
directories
are involved
Fail When directories are involved Issues with
complex cases
Divergent move Yes Yes Fail Fail With directories Issue Issue
Cycle move Yes Yes Fail Fail Fail Fail
Move/add Yes Fail In complex, issues with simple Fail Fail In some cases Fail Issue
Added evil twin Issues Yes Fail Yes Yes Yes

How to migrate your Perforce depots to Plastic SCM

We provide full assistance during migration

We have an ad-hoc importer to move depots from Perforce to Plastic SCM. Very often Perforce depots are huge (something especially true for game studios, where gigabytes of data are not uncommon), so we prefer to provide full assistance.

It is very simple: you contact us and we help you with the process.

Gradual migration from Perforce to Plastic SCM is available

Our P4 exporter works in two directions: it can import from Perforce to Plastic, and export from Plastic to Perforce.

Very often teams need to migrate gradually. They move part of the project to Plastic while the rest of the team still stays in P4. Normally, they use a branch as the rendezvous point for this; they can checkin changes to this branch in P4 to deliver changes, pull it to Plastic, and vice-versa - make changes in Plastic and push them to the P4 "sync" branch.