Installing Git and Configuring it for Local Repositories

Hands-On Lab


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Terrence Cox

Senior Vice President of Content





Although installing the git source control package on any distribution is trivial, there is more to using it for source control on your local system than that. In this activity, the student will install Git, but will also set a few key parameters that will allow any changes to be identified with the user making them. At the end of this exercise, the student will understand the key global and local values that can be set in your Git configuration.

What are Hands-On Labs?

Hands-On Labs are scenario-based learning environments where learners can practice without consequences. Don't compromise a system or waste money on expensive downloads. Practice real-world skills without the real-world risk, no assembly required.

Installing Git and Configuring for Local Use

Hello there. Come on in, and let's get set up to use Git. We've got a development team that's grown to the point where they feel the need to use a source control and versioning repository. They've chosen Git, and we need to set it up for them. We've got the credentials and access to their intended source control server, and they've asked us to set the default global configuration keys for it. We may tie this to a remote repository at some point, but for now this will remain local.

We need to configure all settings globally for now, including the user (cloud_user) and email (

Install the Client Source Control Package

First, we've got to install the 'git' package on the provisioned CentOS 7 system, which is done using the 'yum' package management system and the default configured repositories.

Let's get logged in to the CentOS server. Git may already be installed, but it won't hurt anything to run this yum command:

sudo yum -y install git

Create the Global Configuration File for Git

The dev team wants any settings we configure to be global, which requires the existence of a file called /home/cloud_user/.gitconfig for storing them. These commands modify that file. Since it isn't there to begin with, this one also creates it:

git config --global "cloud_user"
git config --global ""
git config --global core.editor "/usr/bin/vi"

Note: We're setting vi here as a default editor, but if the dev team decides on emacs or nano, it's easy enough to change.

Check Global Settings

There are a couple ways to check whether or not our settings are configured. We can run:

git config --list

This outputs each setting on a line:

Instead, we could run:

cat ~/.gitconfig

This just reads and outputs the file itself:

        name = cloud_user
        email =
        editor = /usr/bin/vi


This is all we needed to do. It's safe to hand the server back to the dev team. Congratulations!