Packagecloud Private Repositories on the Free Plan

Packagecloud is announcing an update: Free plan users who do not upgrade to a plan enabling private repository use will have restricted access to their existing private repositories, including all packages contained within them. 
This is to ensure our users’ capabilities are adequately reflected by the features available in their current subscription.

This update went live on Thursday, September 07th 2023.

Our team has assessed this will primarily impact only a small group of users that have already been notified via the email registered with their Packagecloud account.

What does this mean for affected users?

For any of their private repos, the repo owner, collaborator/s and any end-users will NOT be able to:

  • Download packages. Attempts to do so will result in a 402 error.
  • View the packages or package details from the Packagecloud UI.

A repo owners’ access to their private repos will be limited to:

  • Updating the repo’s settings in the UI (name, collaborators, or deleting the repo etc.)
  • Promoting the packages to a public repo using the Packagecloud API or CLI.
  • Making requests for package/repo details using our API only.

We recommend one of three options:

1. Upgrade your plan to regain private repo access

If you need help on finding the best plan for your use case, please reach out to our friendly support team for assistance.

2. Promote your packages to a public repository
This can be done via the UI, using our CLI or API. 

3. Download your packages and delete the private repo/s
Until July 31st, the packages will still be available for download:

  • Via the UI by clicking the ‘Download’ button located on the package’s details page, or
  • By installing the repo and downloading the package via the appropriate command/s.

Once the data is backed up, the repo together with its contents can be deleted via the repo’s Settings page in the UI.

Please ensure all end-users are notified accordingly to prevent any disruptions.
If no reasonable action is taken for a substantial amount of time, the restricted data may be considered forfeited and removed to conserve on our hosting costs.

Creating private repositories on the free trial

Upon signing up to Packagecloud with a 14 day trial, users can have unlimited enjoyment of all features under Packagecloud’s paid plans (Starter, Pro, Enterprise) to test which option best suits their use case.

This includes creating private repositories (NPM, Debian, Maven, RPM, RubyGem, Python, Alpine, Helm and more) to securely store and distribute packages with the use of automatically generated tokens. To continue using and creating private repos, users must be subscribed to a paid plan.

About our decision

Our team has noticed several users previously subscribed to a paid plan or the free 14 day trial have, for reasons now identified, been able to continue using their private repos upon switching to the Free plan - despite this being a feature exclusive to the Starter, Pro and Enterprise plans. 

We trust this was likely by pure accident hence Packagecloud does not plan to seek any back payment for the accidental enjoyment of our paid features.

Packagecloud will however, make appropriate amendments: 
Free plan users with private repos will no longer be able to access them from Thursday, 07th September 2023, until they upgrade to a plan which enables this feature.

Thank you for your attention, and if you have any questions please let us know by reaching out to our team at

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