What does a friendless third grader with a magnifying glass have in common with a software developer? They both spend way too much time tracking down bugs.
Much like living bugs, programming bugs are a ubiquitous and annoyingly persistent fact of life for developers. It’s crucial for devs to track and manage bugs as they’re found, or doom themselves to comb through lines and lines of messy code.
|TIP: Sound like fun? Check out why you should learn to code even if you’re not a developer.|
Luckily, there are myriad bug tracking software solutions available, and plenty are available for free! For solo projects and smaller teams, the free software on the market alleviates the stress of keeping bugs organized and fixes on schedule—without requiring a huge monetary investment. Keep in mind that larger teams may want to look into the paid options we’ve laid out, which tend to offer more robust task assignment and workflow features.
Picking out and constantly utilizing the right bug tracking software can make or break your app’s success on the market. Unhandled errors mean bad user reviews—so even if you figure out how to get your app featured on the App Store or Google Play Store, the negative attention will impact your attach rate for the worse. Make sure to check out the products listed below to give your work its best chance to shine.
For each qualifying product, we created a profile to give a snapshot of what it is and what it does, as well as offer some insight into the product features. To help you narrow down bug tracking offerings, we have covered a variety of solutions ranked by user Satisfaction score as of July 23, 2019. These products represent a small portion of the many development-related software offerings listed on G2.
What are the top free bug tracking software in 2019?
- AWS X-Ray
- Zoho Bugtracker
For each product we provide:
- An overview
- Free and paid options details
- Highlighted features
- What users like and dislike*
Product reviews and G2 Crowd star ratings were updated as of August 22, 2019
Product Name: Bugsee
Bugsee is a bug and crash reporting tool for iOS and Android apps. It locally records everything that your app is doing—that way, when a bug occurs, the circumstances that led to it have already been recorded. The recording includes video of users’ actions and touches, all network traffic, console logs, and more.
- The Lite Version retains all tracking data for three days and runs on up to five unique devices per month for free.
- The Pro Version grants priority support, retains all tracking data for 30 days, and runs on up to 100 unique devices per month for $99/month (paid annually).
- The Custom option grants premium support, unlimited data retention and a custom amount of supported devices. Custom pricing is available on contact.
- In-app video-recorded bug reporting
- No limit on number of apps and team members
- Bug tracking and chat integrations
- Crash reporting and analytics
- Custom traces/attachments
Image courtesy of Bugsee
What users say
“The video recording is the best feature, our team loves the fact that this 60-second video tells you exactly what happened. iOS integration, design is awesome, reporting is fast and accurate and customer support is great.”
— Bugsee review by Ana T.
“Bugsee is an awesome product that every member of our team liked so much. It saves us a huge amount of time for recording and reproducing any issues, extra communication routine. Now a recording of any issue and posting it to our tracking system take only two seconds, it is done directly from the application. Great integrations level! Now we have even more time to create great mobile apps! Bugsee made us and our clients happier!”
— Bugsee review by Vadim P.
Product Name: Instabug
Instabug gives mobile devs instant access to user feedback and generates detailed, in-depth bug and crash reports for your apps. Instabug presents the conditions surrounding a bug or crash in a straightforward, transparent way. This makes Instabug an attractive choice for devs who would prefer to read crash data and user feedback as opposed to watching video.
- Instabug’s free plan grants basic bug feedback and reporting to one member and one app, with a month of data retention and up to a million sessions per month.
- The Essential plan adds crash reporting, debugging logs, and basic integrations for four members and two apps, with three months of data retention for $124/month.
- The Team plan adds in-app chats and surveys, feature requests, analytics, and advanced integrations for four members and two apps, with six months of data retention for $249/month.
- The Business plan adds assisted onboarding, API access, and custom reports for four members and two apps, with 12 months of data retention for $499/month.
- The Enterprise plan is custom-priced upon contact, and includes the full feature set for an unlimited number of members and apps, with unlimited data retention and unlimited sessions.
- In-app user feedback
- One month default data retention
- Detailed bug and crash reports
Image courtesy of Instabug
What users say
“Instabug does a phenomenal job allowing product managers to sift through feedback in a phenomenally targeted way. I can easily set up sorting and search criteria as well as user-selected categories to see the impact of a diverse range of different release issues. Bug search and sorting is by far one of the most useful tools of gauging and prioritizing problems to solve for my mobile user base.”
— Instabug review by Stephen H.
“Instabug is quite simply the best in-app feedback and bug tracking tool available on the market. We would not be in business right now without Instabug due to the fickle nature of our customers. Since adopting Instabug, we’ve increased our app rating to 4.5 stars and headed off potential catastrophes by detecting and resolving major issues quickly.”
— Instabug review by Louis U.
Product Name: Sentry
Sentry is an open-source, multi-language bug tracking tool that generally avoids the use of user reports in favor of comprehensive full stack monitoring. It touts itself as the antithesis to vague, unhelpful, and slow user feedback. While front-end user reports are still included as an optional feature, Sentry insists on its ability to help devs find and fix bugs before users notice a problem.
- The free Developer option for personal projects and early-stage applications features real-time bug tracking, intelligent deduplication, and support for every language.
- The Team option allows for unlimited users and projects, starting at $26/month billed annually for monthly event volumes of 100,000.
- The Business option grants more control over resolution workflow and deeper insight into relevant events, starting at $80/month billed annually for monthly event volumes of 100,000.
- Enhanced stack tracing
- Custom queries
- Full stack error monitoring
- Data visualization
Image courtesy of Sentry
What users say
“As for me, I can just use a few lines of code to set up this system and it takes only a few minutes. I’m glad that system works fast and I can save my productive time. Also I have the ability to have notifications via my email or push messages as part of an existing workflow when mistakes happen.”
— Sentry review by Alfred A.
“Sentry by far is my favorite exception tracker that can provide lots of powerful debugging information including raw data payloads, exception, tags, git release etc., making it easy to know if this bug is happening across multiple environments and how common it is happening.”
— Sentry review by Alvin S.
Product Name: Rollbar
Rollbar offers bug tracking software with real-time visibility and proactive triaging. Rollbar downplays user feedback in favor of extensive error alert and management systems that give devs efficient information on bugs as soon as they pop up.
- The free option grants all features found in the Essentials option (detailed below) without on-demand events and allows 5,000 error events per month.
- The Essentials option grants real-time feed and alerts, intelligent error grouping, stack traces, telemetry, and more starting at $41/month for 100,000 error events per month.
- The Advanced option grants an enhanced account dashboard, multi-project feed, and versions starting at $83/month for 100,000 error events per month.
- Stack tracing
- Real-time feed
- Error grouping
Image courtesy of Rollbar
What users say
“I really like the interface, it’s very balanced and gives me all the information I need. I can easily filter notifications by type, source and more to support and enhance my workflow. I love how easy it is to integrate with my projects. Rollbar is easy to set up, just a few lines of code.”
— Rollbar review by Ariel C.
“I can get a sort notice by error type, and more to support and increase our workflow. I have the ability to use telemetry to see the timeline of fact leading up to a mistake. Also, I can overlook error trends by entry, browser, OS, position, user, and host. Great way to sort out our errors.”
— Rollbar review by Logan S.
Product Name: Phabricator
Phabricator offers a wide range of tools for dev projects, including task management, source code auditing, documentation, chat channels, and—the reason we’re all here—bug tracking. While its bug tracking functionality may be less specialized than some of the other products on this list, the benefits and ease of working within one seamless ecosystem can’t be overlooked.
- The local install is completely free and open source, with everything included.
- The Hosted Option includes support for $20/month per user, with no additional cost after 50 users.
- Full development platform
- Pre-commit code review
- Source code auditing
- Customizable task management
- Standard bug tracking
Image courtesy of Phabricator
What users say
“Fully integrated set of tools for development: task tracker, pre- and post-commit code review, repository management, CI integration, chat, scheduling tools, wiki, project management tools, paste, graphics review tools, and many other helpful features. While all the features may look overwhelming at first, the Dashboard tool and extensive setting controls allow you to select, integrate, and display only those features you need.”
— Phabricator review by Jason M.
6. AWS X-Ray
Product Name: AWS X-Ray
AWS X-Ray offers analysis and debugging functionality through Amazon’s AWS Cloud. It is specifically designed to help devs debug and analyze the behavior of production, distributed applications.
- As part of the AWS Free Tier, AWS X-Ray grants 100,000 traces recorded and 1 million traces retrieved or scanned.
- Beyond the free tier, traces recorded cost $5 per 1 million traces recorded. Traces retrieved or scanned beyond the free tier cost $0.50 per 1 million traces.
- End-to-end tracing
- Service map
- Server- and client-side latency detection
- Data annotation and filtering
Image courtesy of Amazon
What users say
“AWS X-Ray is a great service that allows the analysis and debugging of your applications through the AWS Cloud. It is compatible with microservices and server-based applications which can be difficult to debug by common methods.”
— AWS X-Ray review by Catleya Q.
Product Name: MantisBT
MantisBT is an open-source, web-based bug tracking system. It offers devs a balance of simplicity of use and power, and is completely free to download. MantisBT gives devs the opportunity to upgrade to a hosted version for access to MantisHub’s support team.
- MantisBT’s local download is completely free.
- Devs can access the MantisHub add-on featuring a dedicated support team starting at $4.95/month billed annually.
- Customizable issue fields
- Simple text presentation
- Task tracking and collaboration
- Open source
Image courtesy of MantisBT
What users say
“MantisBT is a very good bug tracking software. We’ve deployed it in our own server and worked perfectly. The best thing is that it is open source, so we forked it and brought it to our needs. Very nice UI, simple and efficient.”
— MantisBT review by Dimitris S.
“I like how you can search for a project by its project number or name and it will narrow down all of the submitted issues to just the information related to that project. It helps to see what tickets are open or closed for a particular project.”
— MantisBT review by a verified mid-market user
Product Name: YouTrack
YouTrack uses IDE-based intelligence software to help devs track and manage issues in real time. Featuring instant bug reporting and smart search functionality that cuts down on screen bloat, YouTrack touts innovative issue management. Features include sprint planning, project management, and more to give devs a full management platform for their projects.
- The InCloud option for one to three users is free.
- The InCloud option for 4–100 users is $4.16/month per user, billed annually.
- The InCloud option for 101-plus users offers a pricing discount dependent on the number of users.
- Robust dev management platform
- Smart search
- Instant reporting
- Innovative issue management
Image courtesy of YouTrack
What users say
“It’s a web-based product, which means that teams in different regions can use it very easily without the use of any VPN connection to a central location. Its Dashboard widgets and agile boards are super useful and easy to use. Many of the fields are super configurable to allow for a very personalized integration.”
— YouTrack review by Asher A.
“I like the clever search. Gives me the ability to find everything that I need in no time, using smart search request with perfection. I’m glad that I can accelerate the daily routine in a comfortable way. Much better to make multiple panels and share them with my employees or other user teams.”
— YouTrack review by Burton T.
9. Zoho Bugtracker
Product Name: Zoho Bugtracker
Zoho Bugtracker is a bug tracking and management application that allows devs to submit detailed reports, schedule milestones, and visualize workflow. Like many bug tracking products, it allows devs to organize issues based on prioritization and assign bugs to relevant team members.
- The free plan grants bug tracking to one project with five client users.
- The standard plan grants bug tracking and an increased feature set to 10 projects with 10 client users for $20/month.
- The premium plan grants bug tracking and the full feature set to an unlimited number of projects with 15 client users for $40/month, and an additional $3/month per additional user.
- Detailed bug management
- Customizable bug status and fields
- Collaboration and communication tools
Image courtesy of Zoho
What users say
“Zoho Bugtracker consists of several premium features and they [provide] these services for free…Bug documentation is very simple in the Zoho Bugtracker. It provides a simple user interface which is very nice looking. The image attachment feature for bug documentation is very useful.”
— Zoho Bugtracker review by Kavindra L.
“A straightforward, quick, and versatile bug tracking application that encourages you to oversee bugs effectively and convey extraordinary items on time. Send email notifications to clients for different occasions occurring amid the issue tracking life cycle inside a project. We can choose when to notify and who to advise. Also we can create custom workflows, statuses, and fields to tailor BugTracker to our needs.”
— Zoho Bugtracker review by Mahesh K.
When considering which bug tracking software product is right for you, it’s important to keep standout features in mind. Do you find user reports valuable, or prefer automated full stack error monitoring? Are you looking for a tool that goes beyond bug tracking to include a multitude of management features for your project, or would you prefer something more specialized? Make sure to consider these kinds of questions when deciding on the right software.
Interested in developing an app but don’t know much about coding? Explore low-code vs. no-code development.
*Reviews edited for spelling, grammar, punctuation, and clarity.
Jessica spends 12 hours a day on the internet managing security for web assets and loves her macha tea