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Grit gives you object oriented read/write access to Git repositories via Ruby. Patched for GitLab
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Grit. GitLab fork

Code status

build status build status Gem Version Code Climate Coverage Status

Fork changes

We patched existing grit library to use it inside GitLab

  • Added grep method to look for files
  • Fixed commits parsing for signed commits
  • Encoding fixes
  • Cleanup and improve code style
  • Handle filenames with spaces
  • Fixes symlinks omission from diff
  • Added Gemfile
  • Ruby 2.0 support
  • Automatically set the --work-tree= option for Git
  • Remove chdir: option from Grit::Git#native
  • and much more small fixes


Grit gives you object oriented read/write access to Git repositories via Ruby. The main goals are stability and performance. To this end, some of the interactions with Git repositories are done by shelling out to the system's git command, and other interactions are done with pure Ruby reimplementations of core Git functionality. This choice, however, is transparent to end users, and you need not know which method is being used.

This software was developed to power GitHub, and should be considered production ready. An extensive test suite is provided to verify its correctness.

Original Grit is maintained by Tom Preston-Werner, Scott Chacon, Chris Wanstrath, and PJ Hyett.

This fork is maintained by

This documentation is accurate as of Grit 2.3.



Easiest install is via RubyGems:

$ gem install grit


Grit's Git repo is available on GitHub, which can be browsed at:

and cloned with:

git clone git://

If you're installing from source, you can use Bundler to pick up all the gems:

$ bundle install


If you'd like to hack on Grit, follow these instructions. To get all of the dependencies, install the gem first.

  1. Fork the project to your own account
  2. Clone down your fork
  3. Create a thoughtfully named topic branch to contain your change
  4. Hack away
  5. Add tests and make sure everything still passes by running rake
  6. If you are adding new functionality, document it in
  7. Do not change the version number, I will do that on my end
  8. If necessary, rebase your commits into logical chunks, without errors
  9. Push the branch up to GitHub
  10. Send a pull request for your branch


Grit gives you object model access to your Git repositories. Once you have created a Repo object, you can traverse it to find parent commits, trees, blobs, etc.

Initialize a Repo object

The first step is to create a Grit::Repo object to represent your repo. In this documentation I include the Grit module to reduce typing.

require 'grit'
repo ="/Users/tom/dev/grit")

In the above example, the directory /Users/tom/dev/grit is my working directory and contains the .git directory. You can also initialize Grit with a bare repo.

repo ="/var/git/grit.git")

Getting a list of commits

From the Repo object, you can get a list of commits as an array of Commit objects.

# => [#<Grit::Commit "e80bbd2ce67651aa18e57fb0b43618ad4baf7750">,
      #<Grit::Commit "91169e1f5fa4de2eaea3f176461f5dc784796769">,
      #<Grit::Commit "038af8c329ef7c1bae4568b98bd5c58510465493">,
      #<Grit::Commit "40d3057d09a7a4d61059bca9dca5ae698de58cbe">,
      #<Grit::Commit "4ea50f4754937bf19461af58ce3b3d24c77311d9">]

Called without arguments, Repo#commits returns a list of up to ten commits reachable by the master branch (starting at the latest commit). You can ask for commits beginning at a different branch, commit, tag, etc.


You can specify the maximum number of commits to return.

repo.commits('master', 100)

If you need paging, you can specify a number of commits to skip.

repo.commits('master', 10, 20)

The above will return commits 21-30 from the commit list.

The Commit object

Commit objects contain information about that commit.

head = repo.commits.first
# => "e80bbd2ce67651aa18e57fb0b43618ad4baf7750"

# => [#<Grit::Commit "91169e1f5fa4de2eaea3f176461f5dc784796769">]

# => #<Grit::Tree "3536eb9abac69c3e4db583ad38f3d30f8db4771f">
# => #<Grit::Actor "Tom Preston-Werner <>">

# => Wed Oct 24 22:02:31 -0700 2007

# => #<Grit::Actor "Tom Preston-Werner <>">

# => Wed Oct 24 22:02:31 -0700 2007

# => "add Actor inspect"

You can traverse a commit's ancestry by chaining calls to #parents.


The above corresponds to master^^^ or master~3 in Git parlance.

The Tree object

A tree records pointers to the contents of a directory. Let's say you want the root tree of the latest commit on the master branch.

tree = repo.commits.first.tree
# => #<Grit::Tree "3536eb9abac69c3e4db583ad38f3d30f8db4771f">
# => "3536eb9abac69c3e4db583ad38f3d30f8db4771f"

Once you have a tree, you can get the contents.

contents = tree.contents
# => [#<Grit::Blob "4ebc8aea50e0a67e000ba29a30809d0a7b9b2666">,
      #<Grit::Blob "81d2c27608b352814cbe979a6acd678d30219678">,
      #<Grit::Tree "c3d07b0083f01a6e1ac969a0f32b8d06f20c62e5">,
      #<Grit::Tree "4d00fe177a8407dbbc64a24dbfc564762c0922d8">]

This tree contains two Blob objects and two Tree objects. The trees are subdirectories and the blobs are files. Trees below the root have additional attributes.
# => "lib"

# => "040000"

There is a convenience method that allows you to get a named sub-object from a tree.

tree / "lib"
# => #<Grit::Tree "e74893a3d8a25cbb1367cf241cc741bfd503c4b2">

You can also get a tree directly from the repo if you know its name.

# => #<Grit::Tree "master">

# => #<Grit::Tree "91169e1f5fa4de2eaea3f176461f5dc784796769">

The Blob object

A blob represents a file. Trees often contain blobs.

blob = tree.contents.first
# => #<Grit::Blob "4ebc8aea50e0a67e000ba29a30809d0a7b9b2666">

A blob has certain attributes.
# => "4ebc8aea50e0a67e000ba29a30809d0a7b9b2666"
# => "README.txt"

# => "100644"

# => 7726

You can get the data of a blob as a string.
# => "Grit is a library to ..."

You can also get a blob directly from the repo if you know its name.

# => #<Grit::Blob "4ebc8aea50e0a67e000ba29a30809d0a7b9b2666">


There are many more API methods available that are not documented here. Please reference the code for more functionality.


Copyright (c) 2010 Tom Preston-Werner. See LICENSE for details.

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