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Download a single file from a private GitHub repo. You'll need an access token as described in this GitHub Help article: https://help.github.com/articles/creating-an-access-token-for-command-line-use
curl -H 'Authorization: token INSERTACCESSTOKENHERE' -H 'Accept: application/vnd.github.v3.raw' -O -L https://api.github.com/repos/owner/repo/contents/path
@ksridhar
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ksridhar commented Jan 23, 2019

thanks to
@peteratticusberg commented on Aug 9, 2015
would like to add that if you want to retrieve a file stored in a specific tag (say: my_unit_test) you would specify the curl command as follows (as in a bash script):

USER="me"
PASSWD="mypasswd"
OUTPUT_FILEPATH="./foo"
OWNER="mycompany"
REPOSITORY="boo"
RESOURCE_PATH="project-x/a/b/c.py"
TAG="my_unit_test"
curl \
    -u "$USER:$PASSWD" \
    -H 'Accept: application/vnd.github.v4.raw' \
    -o "$OUTPUT_FILEPATH" \
    -L "https://api.github.com/repos/$OWNER/$REPOSITORY/contents/$RESOURCE_PATH?ref=$TAG"

@emmahsax
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emmahsax commented Nov 22, 2019

Does anyone else run into the issue where when they get the zipped or tarred file, they cannot unzip it (or untar it)?

$ curl -H 'Authorization: token my-oauth-token-here' -H 'Accept: application/vnd.github.v3.raw' -O -L https://api.github.com/repos/owner-name/repo-name/releases/assets/v1.1.0.tar.gz
% Total    % Received % Xferd  Average Speed   Time    Time     Time  Current
                                 Dload  Upload   Total   Spent    Left  Speed
100   130  100   130    0     0    473      0 --:--:-- --:--:-- --:--:--   474
$ ls
v1.1.0.tar.gz
$ tar xvzf v1.1.0.tar.gz 
tar: Unrecognized archive format
tar: Error exit delayed from previous errors.

Somehow, using the command line doesn't get the full zipped/tarred file. when I click the link in the UI, I can successful unzip/untar the file via the command line after it downloads to my machine.

@emmahsax
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emmahsax commented Nov 22, 2019

Ah I figured it out. This works!

ACCESS_TOKEN='1234567890abcdefghijk'
REPO_DOWNLOAD_URL=$(curl -u "${ACCESS_TOKEN}:" -s https://api.github.com/repos/owner-name/repo-name/releases/latest | \
  awk '/tag_name/ {print "https://api.github.com/repos/owner-name/repo-name/tarball/" substr($2, 2, length($2)-3) ""}'
)

curl -u "${ACCESS_TOKEN}:" -LkSs "{$REPO_DOWNLOAD_URL}" -o - | tar xzf -

This finds the latest release for repository owner-name/repo-name, and then grabs the tar of it and opens it up in the current directory. A user just needs an Oauth access token!

@jakeonfire
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jakeonfire commented Dec 24, 2020

when using -O to save a file with the same name, it includes request params in the file name. so i prefer setting ref via -d like this:

curl -GLOf -H "Authorization: token ${GITHUB_TOKEN?not set}" -H "Accept: application/vnd.github.v4.raw" \
  "https://api.github.com/repos/$ORG/$REPO/contents/$FILEPATH" -d ref="$REVISION"

-G causes data (specified by -d) to be added as URL request params, but not the saved filename. -f ensures if there is an issue, like 401 bad auth, the command returns an error instead of just saving the file with the error response.

@porthunt
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porthunt commented Aug 6, 2021

I've created this simple gist in case someone needs to download a json file from a private repository and use it as a dictionary: https://gist.github.com/porthunt/b994154c054deeab7ab4073273aa75bc

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