Setting up Git on EC2 to pull from GitHub repo

I’m kind of new to both EC2 and Git, and I have just set up my first instance of EC2, using a clean Amazon Linux AMI. I also installed MySQL, Apache and PHP and opened some ports to make it work as a normal web server, responding to an elastic IP as well.

Now, my code is on a private repo on GitHub, and I would like to perform simple deployments by doing git pull or something like that. Git is also installed on the server already. I know I could set up my git repo on the server using my personal ssh key, but it seems odd. I guess another solution would be to create a new GitHub user and use it on the server, but it doesn’t seem right either.

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  • 2 Solutions collect form web for “Setting up Git on EC2 to pull from GitHub repo”

    To avoid having to keep an SSH private key on your EC2 instance, people often use a workflow that involves pushing to that remote server in order to deploy. Essentially, you set up a bare git repository there with a pre-receive hook that deploys to another directory. There is a simple example of doing this in this tutorial. Then you only need to have your SSH public key in ~/.ssh/authorized_keys on the server. However, with this workflow, you couldn’t deploy directly from your GitHub repository – you would need to pull it locally and then push to the EC2 machine.

    An alternative is to use GitHub’s deploy keys mechanism. This would involve creating a new SSH key-pair on your EC2 instance, and adding the public key as a deploy key into your private repository on GitHub. Then you can pull directly from your private GitHub repository to your EC2 instance.

    I just solved such situation by following the tutorial that Mark Longair pointed before. The only problem I got was in the creation of the bare git repository. So let me resume how I solved it.

    1. I already have my github private repository.
    2. I created the EC2 Linux AMI (Ubuntu for practical procedures)
    3. I’ve installed git, mysql, php, apache and ssh at the EC2 instance, and added my public ssh key to the /home/ubuntu/.ssh/authorized_keys file.
    4. Once at the EC2 instance I created two folders, the first one to hold the repository (I just named it as I’ve named my github repository), and the second one to hold the site(s): mkdir sitesrepo.git websites.
    5. Then I went to the folder that was going to hold the repository and initialized the bare repository: cd sitesrepo.git && git init --bare
    6. I created the hook file via vim with the following content in a file named post-receive and then I made it executable via chmod +x post-receive (just as the tutorial stated). That file must be placed at /home/ubuntu/sitesrepo.git/hooks

      GIT_WORK_TREE=/home/ubuntu/websites git checkout -f
    7. Here’s where my steps differ from the tutorial mentioned before: A bare git repository has a conflict where it can’t hold the worktree being a bare repository (It doesn’t make sense since it’s a bare repository. Non-bare repositories are intended to have a working space, i.e. a worktree). Fortunately you can manually set up the repository config file. So by editing the file /home/ubuntu/sitesrepo.git/config you must guarantee to have something like this:

          repositoryformatversion = 0
          filemode = true
          bare = false
          worktree = /home/ubuntu/websites
          denycurrentbranch = ignore
    8. Now, at your own machine, at your git local repository working folder, the idea is to add a new remote repository. Currently you have configured by default origin which tells your repository to push your content into github’s repository. The tutorial calls such remote repository web. So you have to run once: git remote add web ssh:// && git push web +master:refs/heads/master. The subsequent pushes can be done via a simple git push web

    9. Depending on how many sites you are planning to hold, you must configure your apache sites-enabled hosts. Also, since you’re using apache, don’t forget to change the web folder to point to /home/ubuntu/websites, because by default it points to /var/www But you’re ready to go, just don’t forget to restart the apache service after defining the new web folder.

    Hope this helps with your question.

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