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Visualize your repos: Navigate the myriad of Gource configuration options

Various Gource configuration options and how to tweak them to make Gource work better for your repo.

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About Dawn Foster

Getting Started

Install Gource and run it on your repo with the default options

gource /path/to/your/repo


Run Gource with many more configuration options (see details below).

Small Repository with Light Activity

gource -f --logo images/bitergia_logo_sm.png --title "MailingListStats AKA mlstats" 
--key --start-date '2014-01-01' --user-image-dir images -a 1 -s .05 --path ../MailingListStats

Gource Configuration Options


  • --path /path/to/repo (or omit and run Gource from the top level of the repo dir)

Display options:

  • -f show full screen
  • --logo images/bitergia_logo_sm.png
  • --title "MailingListStats AKA mlstats"
  • --key (shows color key for file types)
  • --start-date '2014-05-01'
  • --user-image-dir images (Directory with .jpg or .png images of users 'Full Name.png' for avatars)

Speed up repos with less activity:

  • -a 1 (auto skip to next entry if nothing happens in x seconds - default 3)
  • -s .05 (speed in seconds per day - default 10)

While Gource is running:

  • Space bar to pause
  • Ctrl + / - to speed up or slow down
  • Use arrow keys to move camera
  • Mouse over timeline widget at the bottom and click on a date to move in time.

Recording Gource Videos

For large repos, Gource can take a while to start the visualization while it parses the logs. In this case, you might want to record it as a video to show people or upload online. There are instructions and examples on the Gource wiki. Keep in mind that recording the video can take a long time. I didn't time it, but it took 5-10 minutes on my MacBook Air to record a 31 second video.

The Gource video for this demo was generated using this command:

gource -f --logo images/bitergia_logo_sm.png --title "MailingListStats AKA mlstats" 
--key --start-date '2014-01-01' --user-image-dir images -a 1 -s .05 
--path ../MailingListStats -o - | ffmpeg -y -r 60 -f image2pipe -vcodec ppm -i - -vcodec 
libx264 -preset ultrafast -pix_fmt yuv420p -crf 1 -threads 0 -bf 0 gource.mp4

More Info about Gource

More info about Gource, including downloads and information about installation. You can also look at the presentation I did about Gource at the FLOSS Community Metrics Meeting in Portland in July 2015 on using the Gource custom log format option.

I recommend playing around with the different controls to speed things up / slow down or show / hide things to get something that looks good with your data. Most of this information can be found using gource -H, but the control page on the wiki and the Gource README has more details about the controls. You might also check out these [templates] ( with recommended configurations for different types of data (large projects, long-lived projects, etc.)

You can also check out Gourciferous for visualizing multiple repos in a single visualization using the custom log format.


Gource Demo for the January 2016 FLOSS Community Metrics meeting in Brussels


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