Configuring Git for GitHub#

Like any other computer, you need to configure Git before you can begin developing software and collaborating on GitHub. This page will get you started.

Setting up Git#

At a minimum, configure your name and email. Open a terminal and run:

git config --global "Your Name"
git config --global ""

You can configure many more aspects of Git. The LSST DM Developer guide has some ideas to get you started. If you’ve already customized a ~/.gitconfig file on your local computer, you might want to copy that over to the ~/.gitconfig on the Notebook Aspect.

Storing GitHub credentials#

You can cache your GitHub credentials in the Notebook Aspect so that you don’t have to type in your password each time you git push or work with a private repository.

Open a terminal and run:

git config --global credential.helper store

The next time Git asks for your credentials, it will store them in a ~/.git-credentials file. You can read more about the “store” credential helper in the Git documentation.


If you’ve enabled two-factor authentication for GitHub, you need to use a personal access token instead of your GitHub password.

Follow GitHub’s documentation to create a personal access token.


Even if you haven’t turned on two-factor authentication, we recommend using a personal access token instead of your password as a security best-practice. That way you can monitor how your token is used and revoke it quickly if necessary.

Git LFS for LSST#

The Notebook Aspect includes the Git LFS client.

Git LFS is preconfigured to allow anonymous access to LSST’s Git LFS-backed data repositories (such as lsst/afwdata). Members of the lsst organization on GitHub can set up authenticated Git LFS access to push to LSST’s Git LFS repositories. See the LSST DM Developer Guide for details.