How to update or change author name or email in git or github

Under rare circumstances, your commits in github might show appear in github as if they were made by some one else. I was once the sole contributor in a personal repo and when I pushed a commit to github, I noticed that the in github the commit appeared to come from some other github member and that member was added as a contributor in my repo. The reason for this issue was in my local git config, I had my email address as “user@localhost.localdomain”. Apparently github links your commit to whoever setup that email address to their GitHub account.

Here is the steps and a script that you can run to fix this –

1. Clone your github repo to your local file system.
2. change to the cloned directory
3. Add below shell script to your repo directory and run it –
Make sure to update the first three variables OLD_EMAIL, CORRECT_NAME, and CORRECT_EMAIL to appropriate values.


git filter-branch --env-filter '
' --tag-name-filter cat -- --branches --tags

4. Run ‘git log’ to review the author information and if everything looks good –

git push --force --tags origin 'refs/heads/*'

5. delete the cloned directory from your local file system.

References –

git – add local files to a git repository in local file system (bare git repo).

In this blow, I will show you how you can turn your local files into a github style repository. In my case I had files in `/etc/puppet` that I wanted to version control, but I wanted to push to a bare repository in the same machine or localhost. Here are the steps I followed –

Files to version control : /etc/puppet
Bare git repository that we will push changes in /etc/puppet : /var/lib/puppet/gitrepo/

1. Create a github style git repository in /var/lib/puppet/gitrepo

root@linubuvmb:/# mkdir -p /var/lib/puppet/gitrepo && cd /var/lib/puppet/gitrepo
root@linubuvmb:/var/lib/puppet/gitrepo# git --bare init
Initialized empty Git repository in /var/lib/puppet/gitrepo/

2. Initialize files as git repository

root@linubuvmb:/# cd /etc/puppet
root@linubuvmb:/etc/puppet# git init
Initialized empty Git repository in /etc/puppet/.git/
root@linubuvmb:/etc/puppet# git add .
root@linubuvmb:/etc/puppet# git commit -m 'First commit'
[master (root-commit) b71ef42] First commit
 50 files changed, 3913 insertions(+)
 create mode 100644 auth.conf
 create mode 100644 environments/example_env/README.environment
 create mode 100755 etckeeper-commit-post
 create mode 100755 etckeeper-commit-pre
 create mode 100644 fileserver.conf
 create mode 100644 manifests/base.pp
 create mode 100644 manifests/nodes.pp
 create mode 100644 manifests/site.pp
 create mode 100644 modules/apache/manifests/init.pp

3. Add bare repo as remote

root@linubuvmb:/etc/puppet# git remote add origin file:///var/lib/puppet/gitrepo/

4. Push to local git repository

root@linubuvmb:/etc/puppet# git push -u origin master
Counting objects: 84, done.
Delta compression using up to 2 threads.
Compressing objects: 100% (70/70), done.
Writing objects: 100% (84/84), 129.33 KiB | 0 bytes/s, done.
Total 84 (delta 6), reused 0 (delta 0)
To file:///var/lib/puppet/gitrepo/
 * [new branch]      master -> master
Branch master set up to track remote branch master from origin.
root@linubuvmb:/etc/puppet# git status
On branch master
Your branch is up-to-date with 'origin/master'.

Changes not staged for commit:
  (use "git add <file>..." to update what will be committed)
  (use "git checkout -- <file>..." to discard changes in working directory)

        modified:   puppet.conf

no changes added to commit (use "git add" and/or "git commit -a")
root@linubuvmb:/etc/puppet# git commit -a
[master f57997d] test
 1 file changed, 1 deletion(-)
root@linubuvmb:/etc/puppet# git status
On branch master
Your branch is ahead of 'origin/master' by 1 commit.
  (use "git push" to publish your local commits)

nothing to commit, working directory clean

Reference –