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git-dude is a simple git desktop notifier. It monitors git repositories in current directory for new commits/branches/tags and shows desktop notification if anything new arrived.

How it works

It simply uses git fetch and parses its output to see what has changed. Then it formats new commit messages with git log and shows desktop notification with notify-send / kdialog (Linux) or growlnotify (OSX). All of this in infinite loop.

How does it look


git-dude on Fedora


git-dude on Ubuntu


git-dude on Mac OSX


git-dude on Haiku


On Linux:

  • notify-send on Gnome (Fedora: libnotify package, Ubuntu: libnotify-bin package)
  • kdialog on KDE (included in KDE)


  • growlnotify, from Growl Extras (Homebrew: growlnotify package)


$ curl -skL >~/bin/git-dude
$ chmod +x ~/bin/git-dude

* Make sure ~/bin is in your $PATH or put git-dude script somewhere else on your $PATH.


Git-dude can be installed with the following command:

$ brew install --HEAD

The homebrew formula lives here.


git-dude iterates over repositories that live inside the dude directory. This directory is nothing more than container for cloned repositories of projects you want to watch. Name it like you want, here for example we use ~/.git-dude:

$ mkdir ~/.git-dude
$ cd ~/.git-dude

Clone some repositories:

$ git clone --mirror
$ git clone --mirror git://

I recommend git clone --mirror - it doesn't checkout working directory so it saves some disk space for bigger projects.

Symlinked repositories work too. This way you can monitor already cloned projects:

$ ln -s ~/code/tmuxinator .

Now run this to monitor pwd:

$ git dude

You can also pass directory name as first argument to specify which directory to monitor instead of pwd.

$ git dude ~/watched-repos

This way you can have multiple dude directories each being monitored by separate git-dude process.



Set how often git-dude should check for changes (in seconds, default: 60):

$ git config --global dude.interval 30

Set path to icon used by desktop notifications (default: none):

$ git config --global dude.icon ~/.git-dude/github_32.png

Set custom notification command ($TITLE, $DESCRIPTION and $ICON_PATH environment variables are set when invoking notification command):

$ git config --global dude.notify-command 'gntp-send "$TITLE" "$DESCRIPTION" "$ICON_PATH"'
$ git config --global dude.notify-command 'echo -e "$TITLE\n\n\n$DESCRIPTION" | espeak --stdin -k20 -ven+12'


Set path to icon used by desktop notifications for this repository (default: taken from global setting):

$ git config dude.icon ~/.git-dude/dm-core/datamapper.png

Tell git-dude to ignore specific repository (if you want to unmonitor it):

$ git config dude.ignore true

Custom upstream remote

When you have forked a repository you are likely to be more interested in what changes happen in the upstream repository rather than your own fork. Therefore it is possible to specify a custom remote:

$ git config dude.remote upstream

With a Git remote configuration like below, it will monitor the upstream repo instead of your fork:

$ git remote -v
origin  [email protected]:holmboe/git-dude.git (fetch)
origin  [email protected]:holmboe/git-dude.git (push)
upstream        git:// (fetch)
upstream        git:// (push)


Marcin Kulik ( | @sickill)

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