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Different git config for different projects or clients


If only working on projects with one single git service you won’t have a problem with email addresses differ between accounts. All your commits will always use the same information. But say you are using one service for private projects, such as GitHub, and another service for work related projects, like GitHub Enterprise. If that’s the case you definitely don’t want to use the same configuration for both of them. One solution is to set these manually on every repository but that’s not very smooth in the long run. Fortunately we can set up conditional git configuration per directory.

Your current .gitconfig (or create one in your home dir if you don’t have one) might look something like this:

    name = Erik Samuelsson
    email =
    editor = vim

Your email will probably differ if you have one address for work and one for personal. Maybe even your name will be different if you lied about everything in your job application. The solution is to create one git config for each client or service you use.

First make sure you organize your personal and client directories in different locations. I organize them like this:

β”œβ”€β”€ work
β”‚   β”œβ”€β”€ client_a
β”‚   β”‚   └── repo_a1
β”‚   β”‚   └── repo_a2
β”‚   └── client_b
β”‚       └── repo_b1
β”‚       └── repo_b2
└── personal
    β”œβ”€β”€ repo_1
    └── repo_2

Now we need to add some conditionals to our ~/.gitconfig so it looks similar to this:

    name = Erik Samuelsson
    email =
    editor = vim

[includeIf "gitdir:~/Projects/work/client_a/**"]
    path = ~/.dotfiles/git/gitconfig-client_a
[includeIf "gitdir:~/Projects/work/client_b/**"]
    path = ~/.dotfiles/git/gitconfig-client_b

By having our personal information set as default every time we can create repos anywhere without worrying about the name and email. In the above example the paths are located in my dotfiles directory but they can be saved anywhere. Let’s create them and add different values inside.

# ~/.dotfiles/git/gitconfig-client_a

    name = Erik Samuelsson
    email =
# ~/.dotfiles/git/gitconfig-client_b

    name = Bob Anderson
    email =

Now we need to test everything to see if it works.

Navigate to your personal folder and type this in the terminal:

cd ~/Projects/personal/
mkdir test
cd test
git init
touch testfile
git config

The last command should output the correct email address for the current directory. Repeat for all directories and the addresses should be different.