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Created March 10, 2014 23:34
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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:
curl -H 'Authorization: token INSERTACCESSTOKENHERE' -H 'Accept: application/vnd.github.v3.raw' -O -L
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emmahsax commented Nov 22, 2019

Ah I figured it out. This works!

REPO_DOWNLOAD_URL=$(curl -u "${ACCESS_TOKEN}:" -s | \
  awk '/tag_name/ {print "" 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!

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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 ${GITHUB_TOKEN?not set}" -H "Accept: application/vnd.github.v4.raw" \
  "$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.

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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:

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W1BTR commented Jun 13, 2024

I get:

curl: (6) Could not resolve host: application
  "message": "Not Found",
  "documentation_url": "",
  "status": "404"

I'm on windows, if that makes a difference.

My command is structured as follow:
curl -H 'Fine_Grain_Auth_Token_With_Readonly_permissions' -H 'Accept: application/vnd.github.v4.raw' -L

I am able to access the file with a url like this (when signed in)
I have also tried having the /main in the url in the command with no change.

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