You may see security alerts on your repositories as dependency graph support rolls out. When there’s a published vulnerability on any of the Composer dependencies that your project lists in composer.json and composer.lock files, GitHub will send you an alert including email or web notifications, depending on your preferences.
These now work for both public and private repositories, and repository admins can enable or disable the features as needed.
PHP has one of the greatest, in my opinion, dependency managers – Composer. The tool works mostly with the public projects via the Packagist website (although it also supports private repositories).
There are over 200,000 packages available on the Packagist to choose from. However, the stats could be a lot better.
Today I came across a mind-blowing visualization of the composer packages and the dependencies between them. Have a look at Code Galaxies Visualization. You can find specific packages via the search, or interactively navigate the star map, like you are in the spaceship.
Dependency managers have scaled this open-source code reuse model down: now, developers can share code at the granularity of individual functions of tens of lines. This is a major technical accomplishment. There are myriad available packages, and writing code can involve such a large number of them, but the commercial, legal, and reputational support mechanisms for trusting the code have not carried over. We are trusting more code with less justification for doing so.
Not only it nicely describes the problem in simple terms, but also provides practical examples and solutions to it. In particular, I enjoyed the section that suggests how to improve dependency evaluation in terms of design, code quality, testing, debugging, maintenance, usage, security, and licensing.
#ProTip In your #PHP application add "composer show -mlDo –strict" to your build pipeline to let your build fail when there are outdated dependencies. You could for example only run it in feature branches to make sure your team keeps the dependencies up-to-date.
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