gitcredentials manpage

Search topic Section


       gitcredentials - Providing usernames and passwords to Git

       git config credential.https://example.com.username myusername
       git config credential.helper "$helper $options"

       Git will sometimes need credentials from the user in order to perform
       operations; for example, it may need to ask for a username and password
       in order to access a remote repository over HTTP. This manual describes
       the mechanisms Git uses to request these credentials, as well as some
       features to avoid inputting these credentials repeatedly.

       Without any credential helpers defined, Git will try the following
       strategies to ask the user for usernames and passwords:

	1. If the GIT_ASKPASS environment variable is set, the program
	   specified by the variable is invoked. A suitable prompt is provided
	   to the program on the command line, and the user's input is read
	   from its standard output.

	2. Otherwise, if the core.askPass configuration variable is set, its
	   value is used as above.

	3. Otherwise, if the SSH_ASKPASS environment variable is set, its
	   value is used as above.

	4. Otherwise, the user is prompted on the terminal.

       It can be cumbersome to input the same credentials over and over. Git
       provides two methods to reduce this annoyance:

	1. Static configuration of usernames for a given authentication

	2. Credential helpers to cache or store passwords, or to interact with
	   a system password wallet or keychain.

       The first is simple and appropriate if you do not have secure storage
       available for a password. It is generally configured by adding this to
       your config:

	   [credential "https://example.com"]
		   username = me

       Credential helpers, on the other hand, are external programs from which
       Git can request both usernames and passwords; they typically interface
       with secure storage provided by the OS or other programs.

       To use a helper, you must first select one to use. Git currently
       includes the following helpers:

	   Cache credentials in memory for a short period of time. See git-
	   credential-cache(1) for details.

	   Store credentials indefinitely on disk. See git-credential-store(1)
	   for details.

       You may also have third-party helpers installed; search for
       credential-* in the output of git help -a, and consult the
       documentation of individual helpers. Once you have selected a helper,
       you can tell Git to use it by putting its name into the
       credential.helper variable.

	1. Find a helper.

	       $ git help -a | grep credential-

	2. Read its description.

	       $ git help credential-foo

	3. Tell Git to use it.

	       $ git config --global credential.helper foo

       Git considers each credential to have a context defined by a URL. This
       context is used to look up context-specific configuration, and is
       passed to any helpers, which may use it as an index into secure

       For instance, imagine we are accessing https://example.com/foo.git.
       When Git looks into a config file to see if a section matches this
       context, it will consider the two a match if the context is a
       more-specific subset of the pattern in the config file. For example, if
       you have this in your config file:

	   [credential "https://example.com"]
		   username = foo

       then we will match: both protocols are the same, both hosts are the
       same, and the "pattern" URL does not care about the path component at
       all. However, this context would not match:

	   [credential "https://kernel.org"]
		   username = foo

       because the hostnames differ. Nor would it match foo.example.com; Git
       compares hostnames exactly, without considering whether two hosts are
       part of the same domain. Likewise, a config entry for
       http://example.com would not match: Git compares the protocols exactly.
       However, you may use wildcards in the domain name and other pattern
       matching techniques as with the http.<URL>.* options.

       If the "pattern" URL does include a path component, then this too must
       match exactly: the context https://example.com/bar/baz.git will match a
       config entry for https://example.com/bar/baz.git (in addition to
       matching the config entry for https://example.com) but will not match a
       config entry for https://example.com/bar.

       Options for a credential context can be configured either in
       credential.* (which applies to all credentials), or credential.<URL>.*,
       where <URL> matches the context as described above.

       The following options are available in either location:

	   The name of an external credential helper, and any associated
	   options. If the helper name is not an absolute path, then the
	   string git credential- is prepended. The resulting string is
	   executed by the shell (so, for example, setting this to foo
	   --option=bar will execute git credential-foo --option=bar via the
	   shell. See the manual of specific helpers for examples of their

	   If there are multiple instances of the credential.helper
	   configuration variable, each helper will be tried in turn, and may
	   provide a username, password, or nothing. Once Git has acquired
	   both a username and a password, no more helpers will be tried.

	   If credential.helper is configured to the empty string, this resets
	   the helper list to empty (so you may override a helper set by a
	   lower-priority config file by configuring the empty-string helper,
	   followed by whatever set of helpers you would like).

	   A default username, if one is not provided in the URL.

	   By default, Git does not consider the "path" component of an http
	   URL to be worth matching via external helpers. This means that a
	   credential stored for https://example.com/foo.git will also be used
	   for https://example.com/bar.git. If you do want to distinguish
	   these cases, set this option to true.

       You can write your own custom helpers to interface with any system in
       which you keep credentials.

       Credential helpers are programs executed by Git to fetch or save
       credentials from and to long-term storage (where "long-term" is simply
       longer than a single Git process; e.g., credentials may be stored
       in-memory for a few minutes, or indefinitely on disk).

       Each helper is specified by a single string in the configuration
       variable credential.helper (and others, see git-config(1)). The string
       is transformed by Git into a command to be executed using these rules:

	1. If the helper string begins with "!", it is considered a shell
	   snippet, and everything after the "!" becomes the command.

	2. Otherwise, if the helper string begins with an absolute path, the
	   verbatim helper string becomes the command.

	3. Otherwise, the string "git credential-" is prepended to the helper
	   string, and the result becomes the command.

       The resulting command then has an "operation" argument appended to it
       (see below for details), and the result is executed by the shell.

       Here are some example specifications:

	   # run "git credential-foo"
		   helper = foo

	   # same as above, but pass an argument to the helper
		   helper = "foo --bar=baz"

	   # the arguments are parsed by the shell, so use shell
	   # quoting if necessary
		   helper = "foo --bar='whitespace arg'"

	   # you can also use an absolute path, which will not use the git wrapper
		   helper = "/path/to/my/helper --with-arguments"

	   # or you can specify your own shell snippet
	   [credential "https://example.com"]
		   username = your_user
		   helper = "!f() { test \"$1\" = get && echo \"password=$(cat $HOME/.secret)\"; }; f"

       Generally speaking, rule (3) above is the simplest for users to
       specify. Authors of credential helpers should make an effort to assist
       their users by naming their program "git-credential-$NAME", and putting
       it in the $PATH or $GIT_EXEC_PATH during installation, which will allow
       a user to enable it with git config credential.helper $NAME.

       When a helper is executed, it will have one "operation" argument
       appended to its command line, which is one of:

	   Return a matching credential, if any exists.

	   Store the credential, if applicable to the helper.

	   Remove a matching credential, if any, from the helper's storage.

       The details of the credential will be provided on the helper's stdin
       stream. The exact format is the same as the input/output format of the
       git credential plumbing command (see the section INPUT/OUTPUT FORMAT in
       git-credential(1) for a detailed specification).

       For a get operation, the helper should produce a list of attributes on
       stdout in the same format (see git-credential(1) for common
       attributes). A helper is free to produce a subset, or even no values at
       all if it has nothing useful to provide. Any provided attributes will
       overwrite those already known about by Git's credential subsystem.

       While it is possible to override all attributes, well behaving helpers
       should refrain from doing so for any attribute other than username and

       If a helper outputs a quit attribute with a value of true or 1, no
       further helpers will be consulted, nor will the user be prompted (if no
       credential has been provided, the operation will then fail).

       Similarly, no more helpers will be consulted once both username and
       password had been provided.

       For a store or erase operation, the helper's output is ignored.

       If a helper fails to perform the requested operation or needs to notify
       the user of a potential issue, it may write to stderr.

       If it does not support the requested operation (e.g., a read-only
       store), it should silently ignore the request.

       If a helper receives any other operation, it should silently ignore the
       request. This leaves room for future operations to be added (older
       helpers will just ignore the new requests).

       Part of the git(1) suite

Git 2.38.4			  05/16/2024		     GITCREDENTIALS(7)