Use gist-paste to Save Text Files as GitHub Gists From the Command Line

March 03, 2021

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Illustration by my buddy Loor Nicolas


THE PROBLEM

You are saving Github Gists often but you spend too much time on their UI.

A SOLUTION

Let’s do it from our CLI!

  1. Install Gist following the instructions for your system. In my case is Ubuntu so:
sudo apt install gist
  1. Go to the tokens section in GitHub and press on “Generate new token”. Input your password in the next screen:

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  1. Set a name for your token and make sure to check the gist and user:email permissions:

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Set a name for your token like gist.

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Check gist and user:email permissions.

  1. Copy your generated token:

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  1. Save the token in ~/.gist. The umask ensures that the file is only accessible from your user account:
(umask 0077 && echo MY_SECRET_TOKEN > ~/.gist)
  1. Check that it has been saved correctly:
cat ~/.gist
  1. Now we can create gists from the command line!

Note that in Ubuntu/Debian the gist command is renamed to gist-paste to avoid conflicts, if you are using a different system like MacOS just replace gist-paste for gist in the next snippet.

echo "hello gist" >> gist.txt
gist-paste gist.txt
# Returns URL of newly created gist https://gist.github.com/eb36806673aca3c63686078d584e2a2e

Jon Portella

Written by Jon Portella.