How to setup your repo GIT and local instance (like for GitLab) and not to fall in despair

When it comes to recurring problems there is nothing better suited than a little reference tutorial to blaze the trail. So, let’s get started!

By Matias Herranz

While collaborating with several projects, I noticed issues when generating and setting up the public keys as well as configuring the access to GIT repositories. These usually gives people a bit of a harsh time.

When it comes to recurring problems there is nothing better suited than a little reference tutorial to blaze the trail. So, let’s get started!

#1: Generate your SSH key-pair and set it up

Step #1: Check if you don’t already have a key pair

Open a terminal and run the following command:

1
2
3

cd ~/.ssh
ls
# Lists the files in your .ssh directory

Check the directory listing to see if you have a file named either id_rsa.pub or id_dsa.pub. If you don’t have either of those files go to step 2. Otherwise, you already have an existing keypair, and you can skip to step 3.

Step #2: Generate new SSH keys

To generate a new SSH key, enter the code below in the terminal. We want the default settings so when asked to enter a file in which to save the key, just press enter.

1
2
3
4
5

$ ssh-keygen -t rsa -C “your_email@example.com”
# Creates a new ssh key, using the provided email as a label
# Generating public/private rsa key pair.
# Enter file in which to save the key (/Users/you/.ssh/id_rsa): [Press enter]
ssh-add id_rsa

Now you need to enter a passphrase.

1
2

Enter passphrase (empty for no passphrase): [Type a passphrase]
# Enter same passphrase again: [Type passphrase again]

Which should give you something like this:

1
2
3
4

Your identification has been saved in /Users/you/.ssh/id_rsa.
# Your public key has been saved in /Users/you/.ssh/id_rsa.pub.
# The key fingerprint is:
# 01:0f:f4:3b:ca:85:d6:17:a1:7d:f0:68:9d:f0:a2:db your_email@example.com

Step #3: Add your SSH key to GitLab

1. Go to your account settings:

2. Now go to the SSH keys section:

3. Click “Add SSH key”

4. Give it a title you like (in the “Title” field) and paste your public key in the bigger “Key” field:

5. Click “Add key” and we are done with loading the SSH public key in GitLab!

Step #4: Check everything worked

Now we should have the key pair generated and set up locally and the public key loaded in GitLab. Let’s now make sure this is the case and that everything went fine.

To achieve such a certainty, run the following command:

1

$ ssh -T git@git.santexgroup.com

If everything went well, you should see an output like this:

1
2

$ ssh -T git@git.santexgroup.com
Welcome to GitLab, <Your Username>!

#2: Some extra hints

Now we have the keys and our GitLab repo set up and ready to work. Now you should be able to clone, push/pull and do all sorts of thing with your GIT repos without being prompted for your username and password. If GIT, after making a command, asks you for your username or password, it means something at some point went wrong.

Go back and make sure you didn’t miss any steps or ask someone for help.

Done with this and want to learn some new tricks? Take a look at this link!

Hope this saves you time and frustrations in the near future!

Matias Herranz is as a Python Developer for Santex. He is a Computer Science and Open Source software enthusiast. He has professional experience on Python/Django web app development and also in mobile apps for iPhone/Android. He is a team player who enjoys and finds it rewarding to share the things he learns, either through conferences and lectures, or through day-to-day communication with his coworkers.

Leave a reply