Tools and Resources

Streamline Scientific Collaboration with TotallyScience GitLab

Streamline Scientific Collaboration with TotallyScience GitLab

Effective collaboration and project management have become essential for scientific research in today’s digital world. While numerous tools exist, researchers need a unified platform that streamlines their workflow from ideation to publication. TotallyScience GitLab is a platform that is purpose-built for scientific and technical teams. This comprehensive guide will explore how TotallyScience GitLab enhances research through powerful yet easy-to-use features.

What is TotallyScience GitLab?

TotallyScience GitLab is a web-based platform specifically designed to meet the unique needs of scientists, researchers, and other technical professionals. As the name suggests, it is a customized version of the popular GitLab platform optimized for scientific and technical use cases. 

Key Features

Some key things to note about TotallyScience GitLab:

  • Like a regular GitLab instance, it provides version control and source code management capabilities. However, the interface and features are tailor-made for scientific workflows.
  • In addition to code, it allows hosting various research assets like documents, datasets, scripts, models, and more in an organized manner.
  • Advanced collaboration tools enable global scientific communities to work together seamlessly on projects.
  • Integrations with popular lab tools and cloud services facilitate an end-to-end research cycle within the platform.
  • Robust security, privacy, and compliance features make it suitable for handling sensitive research materials.
  • Both self-hosted and SaaS options are available to suit different organizational needs.

Project Management with TotallyScience GitLab

One of the primary purposes of TotallyScience GitLab is to facilitate efficient project management. Some of the key features that help with this include:

Project Boards for Visual Task Management

The Kanban-style project boards allow dividing work into to-do, in-progress, and completed columns similar to physical boards. Tasks can be seamlessly assigned, discussed, tracked and rearranged here to maintain full visibility of project status.

Milestones to Decompose Large Projects

Goals are broken into smaller, time-boxed milestones to help stay on schedule. Progress against each milestone’s issues and merge requests can be efficiently reviewed through the dashboard to keep stakeholders informed.

Issues for Comprehensive Task Tracking

Bugs, enhancements, questions or any other items are created as searchable, filterable issues complete with assignees, labels, dependencies and other metadata. Powerful subscription options further aid issue management.

Merge Requests for Structured Code/Document Review

Proposed changes utilize merge requests like pull requests for thorough peer evaluation prior to code/document merges. This ensures high quality through a vetted process before codebase updates.

Activity Feeds for a Holistic Project View

The centralized activity feed provides a “single source of truth” by surfacing all project events from commits to comments, approvals and more, keeping teams on the same page.

Discussions for In-Depth Conversations

Long-form discussions facilitate aligned collaboration without separate mediums, helping distributed teams effectively resolve challenges.

Wiki for Intuitive Documentation

Projects benefit from a simple yet powerful wiki using lightweight markup for documentation, preserving institutional knowledge.

With these features, TotallyScience GitLab brings much-needed structure, visibility, and accountability to research projects of any size.

Collaboration Tools in TotallyScience GitLab

Collaboration Tools in TotallyScience GitLab

Science is all about collaboration, so it’s no surprise that collaboration lies at the core of TotallyScience GitLab’s design. Here are some of its powerful collaboration tools:

User Groups for Granular Access Management

Organizing users into logical groups based on roles aids flexible access control. This is ideal for large, multi-department collaborations needing division of permissions. Notifications also target relevant groups.

Inline Comments for Focused Code Discussions

Comments directly on code, documents or issues facilitate pinpointed conversations around specific lines or sections without losing context. This streamlines feedback.

Snippets for Reusable Code Sharing

Sharable snippets allow reusing code privately or publicly, benefiting others working on similar issues. Well-organized snippets improve discoverability.

Real-time Build Monitoring

The integrated continuous integration system automatically tests commits and merge requests, surfacing failures instantly. This catches errors quickly before they propagate.

Visual Pipelines for Streamlined Delivery

Defining CI/CD workflows visually with reusable, declarative configurations ensures seamless integration. Pipelines are easily maintained as code.

ChatOps for Quick Operations

Interacting with GitLab via chat commands in collaborative tools like Slack and Mattermost provides a convenient interface for queries and actions without switching tools.

Customizable Alerts

Subscribing to and customizing notifications via email, web, mobile and other channels keeps relevant parties informed based on their preferences and timelines.

Security Compliance

Integrated vulnerability scanning and license compliance enforcement help follow best practices for secure, approved use of tools and code.

With these powerful tools, geographically distributed research teams can seamlessly collaborate as if working under one roof.

Integrations with Popular Lab Tools

TotallyScience GitLab is designed to integrate seamlessly with the various tools scientists already use in their day-to-day work:

  • Jupyter: Connect Jupyter notebooks directly to GitLab repositories for versioning workbooks and sharing insights.
  • RStudio Server: Deploy the RStudio Server as a GitLab application and manage R projects, packages, and Shiny apps together.
  • Python: Python packages, environments, and data science workflows packaged and deployed from GitLab.
  • Julia: Julia packages and workflows are first-class citizens on GitLab via native support for the language.
  • MATLAB: Connect MATLAB & Simulink projects to GitLab via integrations for automated deployments.
  • Nextflow: Visualize, scale, and reproduce Nextflow pipelines/workflows using GitLab CI/CD.
  • Docker: Build, test, and deploy Docker images as part of CI/CD pipelines alongside code.
  • Kubernetes: Deploy Dockerized workflows to Kubernetes or OpenShift clusters from GitLab.
  • AWS/GCP: Seamlessly deploy to the cloud via integrations for services like ECS, EKS, GKE, Cloud Run, Dataproc, etc.

This extensive library of integrations lets researchers utilize GitLab as a unified platform spanning their entire software development life cycle.

Advanced Security and Compliance

Advanced Security and Compliance

Handling sensitive data is paramount in scientific research. TotallyScience GitLab ensures robust security and privacy with features like:

Secure Communications

GitLab uses HTTPS by default with optional TLS client authentication for added transport security. Encrypted connections protect data in transit.

Granular File-Level Permissions

Access control lists grant meticulous permissions down to individual files and directories for both users and groups. Fine-grained control is possible.

Network Protection with IP Filtering

Whitelisting only approved, trusted IP addresses limits which machines can access the GitLab instance, strengthening network security posture.

Secret Scanning for Accidental Leaks

Commits and merge requests are automatically analyzed to detect unwitting additions of sensitive credentials, tokens or confidential information.

Dependency Vulnerability Monitoring

Integrated scanners continuously review dependencies for known vulnerabilities, simplifying maintenance of a secure software supply chain.

License Compliance at the Group Level

Enforcing approved licenses at the group level helps catch violations of software policies during code reviews before merges.

Audit Logging of All User Actions

Comprehensive logs of changes to issues, merge requests and more facilitate auditing and eDiscovery for regulatory compliance requirements.

Data Protection with Encryption at Rest

Even if the database is compromised, server-side encryption transparently safeguards sensitive information like secrets, passwords and personal data.

Flexible Identity Federation

SAML, OAuth and other SSO options integrate GitLab seamlessly into existing identity infrastructures for secure, scalable user authentication.

These robust security features help research organizations satisfy stringent compliance and privacy requirements.

Self-Hosted and SaaS Deployment Options

TotallyScience GitLab offers the flexibility to deploy either as:

  • Self-hosted on-premises: Download the community or premium edition to deploy on your servers behind a firewall. Enjoy complete control and customization.
  • SaaS/hosted: Sign up for the fully managed hosted service: no maintenance overhead but less control over infrastructure.
  • GitLab Managed: For large enterprises, GitLab offers dedicated managed instances on AWS/Azure with 24/7 support.
  • Omnibus packages: Install via single-command Omnibus packages on Linux for an automated setup.
  • Docker images: Alternatively, deploy the lightweight GitLab Runner as a container for dynamic scalability.
  • Kubernetes: Seamlessly deploy to any Kubernetes cluster, including GKE with Helm charts.

This array of deployment options lets organizations choose the right fit based on their infrastructure, budget, and operational needs.

Read More: Mosa Mack Science Review for Teachers


TotallyScience GitLab provides a feature-rich DevOps-inspired platform explicitly tailored for scientific and technical workflows. Its extensive library of integrations, robust security controls, and flexible deployment options make it suitable for various research contexts. TotallyScience GitLab aims to boost productivity, enhance reproducibility, and futureproof research processes by facilitating seamless collaboration and end-to-end visibility. Whether self-hosted or SaaS, it can streamline labs, core facilities, consortiums, and more operations.


Nayab Kiran

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I'm Nayab Kiran, a seasoned WordPress developer and education content specialist. With extensive experience in crafting captivating websites, my technical expertise ensures functionality and visual appeal. Over the years, I've honed my content creation skills, contributing unique, globally recognized work. Dedicated to enhancing educational tools and trends, my passion is driving professional growth and success.

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