Skip to content
Switch branches/tags

Latest commit


Git stats


Failed to load latest commit information.
Latest commit message
Commit time

changelog-maker Build Status

A git log to tool

npm npm


changelog-maker is a formalisation of the Node.js entry process but flexible enough to be used on other repositories.

changelog-maker will look at the git log of the current directory, pulling entries since the last tag. Commits with just a version number in the summary are removed, as are commits prior to, and including summaries that say working on <version> (this is an io.js / Node ism).

After collecting the list of commits, any that have PR-URL: <url> in them are looked up on GitHub and the labels of the pull request are collected, specifically looking for labels that start with semver (the assumption is that semver-minor, semver-major labels are used to indicate non-patch version bumps).

Finally, the list is formatted as Markdown and printed to stdout.

Each commit will come out something like this (on one line):

* [[`20f8e7f17a`](] -
  **test**: remove flaky test functionality (Rod Vagg)


  • When running changelog-maker on the command-line, the default GitHub repo is computed from the package.json that exists on cwd, otherwise fallback to nodejs/node, you can change this by supplying the user/org as the first argument and project as the second. e.g changelog-maker joyent node.
  • Commit links will go to the assumed repo (default: nodejs/node)
  • If a commit summary starts with a word, followed by a :, this is treated as a special label and rendered in bold
  • Commits that have semver* labels on the pull request referred to in their PR-URL have those labels printed out at the start of the summary, in bold, upper cased.
  • Pull request URLs come from the PR-URL data, if it matches the assumed repo (default: nodejs/node) then just a # followed by the number, if another repo then a full user/project#number.

When printing to a console some special behaviours are invoked:

  • Commits with a summary that starts with doc: are rendered in grey
  • Commits that have a semver* label on the pull request referred to in their PR-URL are rendered in bold green


npm i changelog-maker -g


changelog-maker [--simple] [--group] [--commit-url=<url/with/{ref}>] [--start-ref=<ref>] [--end-ref=<ref>] [github-user[, github-project]]

github-user and github-project should point to the GitHub repository that can be used to find the PR-URL data if just an issue number is provided and will also impact how the PR-URL issue numbers are displayed

  • --simple: print a simple form, without additional Markdown cruft
  • --group: reorder commits so that they are listed in groups where the xyz: prefix of the commit message defines the group. Commits are listed in original order within group.
  • --commit-url: pass in a url template which will be used to generate commit URLs for a repository not hosted in Github. {ref} is the placeholder that will be replaced with the commit, i.e. --commit-url={ref}
  • --start-ref=<ref>: use the given git <ref> as a starting point rather than the last tag. The <ref> can be anything commit-ish including a commit sha, tag, branch name. If you specify a --start-ref argument the commit log will not be pruned so that version commits and working on <version> commits are left in the list.
  • --end-ref=<ref>: use the given git <ref> as a end-point rather than the now. The <ref> can be anything commit-ish including a commit sha, tag, branch name.
  • --filter-release: exclude Node-style release commits from the list. e.g. "Working on v1.0.0" or "2015-10-21 Version 2.0.0" and also "npm version X" style commits containing only an x.y.z semver designator.
  • --quiet or -q: do not print to process.stdout
  • --all or -a: process all commits since beginning, instead of last tag.
  • --help or -h: show usage and help.


Tests require GitHub authentication in order to fetch pull request metadata. ghauth will generate, store and load a personal access token in your local user configuration when changelog-maker is run during normal operation. To run the tests, you will need to ensure that you have a token in place. There are two ways to do this:

  1. Run node ./changelog-maker.js -a to cause changelog-maker to fetch metadata on a commit with a PR-URL.

  2. Manually generate a personal access token with public_repo scope. Then create a config.json file:

      "user": "MY_GITHUB_USERNAME",
      "token": "MY_SECRET_TOKEN"

    user is your username, and token is the token you generated above. The location of config.json depends on the OS, please see


changelog-maker is Copyright (c) 2015 Rod Vagg @rvagg and licenced under the MIT licence. All rights not explicitly granted in the MIT license are reserved. See the included file for more details.