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Last active March 28, 2023 13:35
What would you like to do?
Create a private fork of a public repository

The repository for the assignment is public and Github does not allow the creation of private forks for public repositories.

The correct way of creating a private frok by duplicating the repo is documented here.

For this assignment the commands are:

  1. Create a bare clone of the repository. (This is temporary and will be removed so just do it wherever.)

    git clone --bare
  2. Create a new private repository on Github and name it easytrace.

    If you are unable to create a private repo, you can request unlimited private repos as a studant by getting the student pack from Github.

  3. Mirror-push your bare clone to your new easytrace repository.

    Replace <your_username> with your actual Github username in the url below.

    cd easytrace.git
    git push --mirror<your_username>/easytrace.git
  4. Remove the temporary local repository you created in step 1.

    cd ..
    rm -rf easytrace.git
  5. You can now clone your easytrace repository on your machine (in my case in the code folder).

    cd ~/code
    git clone<your_username>/easytrace.git
  6. If you want, add the original repo as remote to fetch (potential) future changes. Make sure you also disable push on the remote (as you are not allowed to push to it anyway).

    git remote add upstream
    git remote set-url --push upstream DISABLE

    You can list all your remotes with git remote -v. You should see:

    origin<your_username>/easytrace.git (fetch)
    origin<your_username>/easytrace.git (push)
    upstream (fetch)
    upstream	DISABLE (push)

    When you push, do so on origin with git push origin.

    When you want to pull changes from upstream you can just fetch the remote and rebase on top of your work.

      git fetch upstream
      git rebase upstream/master

    And solve the conflicts if any

  7. Make your easytrace repo available in your Vagrant VM by adding the following to your Vagrantfile

    Replace "~/code/easytrace" with your local path to the easytrace repo.

    config.vm.synced_folder "~/code/easytrace", "/easytrace"
  8. Reload your VM to enable the synced folder (in the folder containing your Vagrant file).

    vagrant reload 
  9. The easytrace repo is available at /easytrace once you ssh into the machine.

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very helpful! Thanks!

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Nowadays you should be able to just use the Import a Repository feature. Not sure if you can import someone's repo straight away, but I first did a public fork and then imported that as private.


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gartisk commented Jul 4, 2021

Thanks for the explanation! Before I had noticed the github import repo solution, I made a bash script using your instructions and publish it here

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nftgeek commented Jul 20, 2021


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Thank you!

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If you use the "import" feature, can you then pull from the public repo and merge it into the private repo fork?

I tried with my own personal project, yes you can still pull from the public repo. What I did was after I import the repo, I used these two commands:

git remote add upstream
git remote set-url --push upstream DISABLE

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Thanks - just found this gist very useful!

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nkrsic commented Sep 22, 2021


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Well written. Thanks

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erdoukki commented Feb 9, 2022


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Even though I do not use this repo, the process of making a private fork helped a lot, thank you!

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Thx a lot.

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Thank you!

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Thank you. Step 6 should contain cd easytrace ;-)

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Thank you. very helpful 💡💡

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Thank you!

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the one thing - it is not forking but duplicating, it means - you wouldn't be able to create a pull request

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Very useful, thank you a lot! 👍

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PabloC commented Aug 18, 2022

Thank you, this is great!

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nestvor commented Sep 23, 2022

Very nice, thank you!

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Thank you very much for this useful guide.
Is it possible to make a pull request to the remote public repo from your private fork/mirror?
If so, how would you do it?
Thank you
Best regards


It's a useful guide. But it's not up to date for this case: "Mirroring a repository that contains Git Large File Storage objects"
Better to check the GitHub Documentation.

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machist commented Jan 15, 2023

Thank you very much for this.
Is it possible to create a mirror of specific branch ?

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marwand commented Jan 22, 2023

Thank you, sir!

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Grato! :)

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iocmet commented Mar 23, 2023


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