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              software version control visualization

                Copyright (C) 2009 Andrew Caudwell



1. Description
2. Requirements
3. Installation
4. Using Gource
5. Building Gource
6. Copyright

1. Description

OpenGL-based 3D visualisation tool for source control repositories.

The repository is displayed as a tree where the root of the repository is the centre, directories are branches
and files are leaves. Contributors to the source code appear and disappear as they contribute to specific files
and directories.

2. Requirements

Gource's display is rendered using OpenGL and requires a 3D accelerated video card to run.

3. Installation

You can either build Gource from scratch or install a pre-compiled binary version from the homepage (recommended).

4. Using Gource

gource <options> <path>


    -f      Fullscreen

            Set the window size. If -f is also supplied, will attempt to set the video mode to this also.

    -p, --start-position POSITION
            Begin at some position in the log (between 0.0 and 1.0).

        --stop-position  POSITION
            Stop (exit) at some position in the log (does not work with STDIN).

            Stop on break in activity. May be combined with --stop-position.

            Stop (exit) at the end of the log / stream.

            Loop back to the start of the log when the end is reached.

    -a, --auto-skip-seconds SECONDS
            Automatically skip to next entry if nothing happens for a specified number of seconds.

    -s, --seconds-per-day SECONDS
            Speed of simulation in seconds per day.

            Realtime playback speed.

    -i, --file-idle-time SECONDS
            Time in seconds files remain idle before they are removed.

    -e, --elasticity FLOAT
            Elasticity of nodes.

    -b, --background FFFFFF
            Background colour in hex.

    --date-format FORMAT
            Specify display date string (strftime format).

    --log-format FORMAT
            Specify format of the log being read (git,cvs,custom). Required when reading STDIN.

            Get the git log of a branch other than the current one.

            Print the git log command used by gource.

            Print the hg log (Mercurial) command used by gource.

            Print the log command used by gource.

    --follow-user USER
            Have the camera automatically follow a particular user.

    --highlight-user USER
            Highlight the names of a particular user.

            Highlight the names of all users.

    --file-filter REGEX
            Filter out any files matching a specified regular expression.

    --user-image-dir DIRECTORY
            Directory containing .jpg or .png images of users (eg 'Full Name.png') to use as avatars.

    --default-user-image IMAGE
            Path of .jpg or .png to use as the default user image.

            Colourize user images.

    --crop AXIS
            Crop view on an axis (vertical,horizontal).

            Enable multi-sampling.

    --bloom-multiplier FLOAT
            Adjust the amount of bloom.

    --bloom-intensity FLOAT
            Adjust the intensity of the bloom.

            Disable progress bar.

            Disable bloom effect.

            Set the maximum number of files. Excess files will be discarded.

    --max-file-lag SECONDS
            Max time files of a commit can take to appear.

    --max-user-speed UNITS
            Max speed users can travel per second.

    --user-friction SECONDS
            Time users come to a complete hault.

    --user-scale SCALE
            Change scale of users.

            Hide users.

            Hide tree.

            Hide files.

            Hide usernames.

            Hide filenames.

            Hide directory names.

            Hide the date.

    --output-ppm-stream FILE
            Write frames as PPM to a file ('-' for STDOUT).

    --output-framerate FPS
            Framerate of output (used with --output-ppm-stream).

    path    Either a Git or Mercurial directory, a pre-generated log file (see --git-log-command, --hg-log-command or the custom
            log format) or '-' to read STDIN. If path is ommited gource will attempt to read a log from the current directory.

Git and Mercurial Examples:

View the log of the respository in the current path:


View the log of a project in the specified directory:

    gource my-project-dir

Save a copy of the log using in a special log format and play it back (example is for Git, Mercurial users see --hg-log-command):

    cd my-git-project
    `gource --git-log-command` > my-git-project.log
    gource my-git-project.log

NOTE: --git-log-command assumes you have a recent version git of that supports all the options. You may need to modify
the command line to work with an older version (changing %aN to %an for instance).

Other Version Control Systems:

Visit the Gource homepage for guides and examples of using Gource with other version control systems:

    CVS       -
    SVN       -

Custom Log Format:

If you want to use Gource with something other than the supported systems, there is a pipe ('|') delimited custom log format:

    timestamp - A unix timestamp of when the update occured.
    username  - The name of the user who made the update.
    type      - Single character for the update type - (A)dded, (M)odified or (D)eleted.
    file      - Path of the file updated.
    colour    - A colour for the file in hex (FFFFFF) format. Optional.

Recording Videos:

You can create a video of Gource using the --output-ppm-stream option. This creates an uncompressed sequence of
screenshots in PPM format which can then be processed by another program (such as ffmpeg) to produce a video file.

The below command line will create a video at 60fps in x264 format, stopping at the end of the log (assumes you have ffmpeg with x264 support):

    gource --stop-at-end --output-ppm-stream - | ffmpeg -y -b 3000K -r 60 -f image2pipe -vcodec ppm -i - -vcodec libx264 gource.mp4


The time shown in the top left of the screen is set initially from the first log entry read and is incremented
according to the simulation speed (--seconds-per-day).

Pressing SPACE at any time will pause/unpause the simulation. While paused you may use the mouse to inspect the
detail of individual files and users.

TAB cycles through selecting the current visible users.

The camera mode, either tracking activity, or showing the entire code tree, can be toggled using the V key.

Interactive keyboard commands:

    (V)   Toggle camera mode
    (C)   Displays Gource logo
    (N)   Jump forward in time to next log entry.
    (+-)  Adjust simulation speed.
    (<>)  Adjust time scale.
    (TAB) Cycle through visible users
    (ESC) Quit

5. Building Gource

The source code to Gource is available from the homepage.

Gource requires the following libraries to compile:

    SDL 1.2 (libsdl1.2-dev)
    SDL Image 1.2 (libsdl-image1.2-dev)
    PCRE3 (libpcre3-dev)
    FTGL 2.1.3~rc5-2 (libftgl-dev)
    PNG library (libpng12-dev)
    JPEG library (libjpeg62-dev)

Building on Linux:

    make install

If you are unfamilar with configure see the INSTALL file.

Building on Windows:

On Windows I recommend compiling the project gource.win32.cbp
with the Code Blocks IDE (

6. Copyright

Gource - software version control visualization
Copyright (C) 2009 Andrew Caudwell <>

This program is free software: you can redistribute it and/or modify
it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by
the Free Software Foundation, either version 3 of the License, or
(at your option) any later version.

This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful,
but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of
GNU General Public License for more details.

You should have received a copy of the GNU General Public License
along with this program. If not, see <>.