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Git for Shared Development Environments

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Server-side Git source control hooks for shared dev environments

What's new in this version


  • Support for git submodules in package manager-aware setting (#305)
  • Web UI's 'More ...' view shows longer branch names (#294)
  • Deletion of files in locked environment is now suppressed (#302)
  • Failed to import file VS Code popup no longer shows up after overwriting file on server once (#264)
  • Don't automatically stage files added to source control (#303)
  • Performance improvements (#269, #315)
  • Checkout of branches whose names contain slashes via Web UI no longer fails (#295)
  • Display other developer's username in Web UI's Workspace when hovering over the name of a file they changed (#304)
  • Incremental load PullEventHandler now handles file deletion (#299)
  • Incremental load PullEventHandler no longer returns a Success Status if an error was thrown during the pull process (#300)
  • CSP applications can now be added to Git successfully (#308)


Server-side source control extension for Git on InterSystems’ platforms


Installation and Setup

  1. Load this repository into IRIS from the community package registry.
    zpm "install git-source-control"
    To install on an environment without access to the internet, download the tar.gz file from the releases page. Copy the archive onto a file system the IRIS instance has access to and extract it. Use the package manager to load the release from that directory.
    tar -xf /path/to/archive/git-source-control-release.tar.gz
    zpm "load /path/to/archive/git-source-control-release"
  2. Configure settings by running the following method and answering the prompts:
    d ##class(SourceControl.Git.API).Configure()
    This will also allow you to generate an SSH key for use as (e.g.) a deploy key and to initialize or clone a git repo.
  3. If using VSCode: Set up isfs server-side editing. First, save your current workspace in which you have the code open. Then, open the .code-workspace file generated by VS Code and add the following to the list of folders:
        "name": "<whatever you want the folder to show up as in the project explorer view>",
        "uri": "isfs://<instance_name>:<namespace_name>/"

Basic Use


Add a file for tracking by right-clicking on it in the workspace/project view and choosing Git > Add.
This same menu also has options to remove (stop tracking the file), discard changes (revert to the index), or commit changes.

You can browse file history and commit changes through a user interface launched from the top level Git > “Launch Git UI” menu item. There is also a page for configuring settings.


The same right click menus as in Studio live under “Server Source Control…” when right-clicking in a file (in the editor) or on a file when exploring an isfs folder. The top level “source control” menu is accessible through the command palette or the source control icon in the top right of the editor.


Menu Options

Documentation for the various git-source-control menu options can be found here.

Mapping Configuration

To specify where files should go relative to your repository root, add mappings via the “Settings” menu item. A mapping has three parts:

  • The file extension to use: e.g., CLS, MAC. As a special case for web application files, use “/CSP/” as the mapping.
  • A filter on the files of that type (e.g., a package name or web application folder)
  • The folder relative to the repo root that contains the item. This controls behavior for import and export.

This might look like:

Example of mapping configuration

Pull Event Handlers

The ##class(SourceControl.Git.PullEventHandler) is a base class that can be extended in order to develop functionality that should be run when the repository pulls from remote. The code placed inside the subclass’ OnPull() method will be executed any time a pull occurs.

A recommended way to implement CI/CD would be to use one of the pre-defined subclasses of PullEventHandler that are placed inside the PullEventHandler package. Additionally, custom load logic can be placed in that package following the model of the existing subclasses.


Unsecured (http) connections

You really should be connecting to IRIS over a secured (https) connection. If you’re not, web pages in this extension will launch in an external browser, because constraints around session cookies keep them from working properly in VSCode.

Dubious Ownership

Newer git versions may produce output like:

fatal: detected dubious ownership in repository at 'C:/Your/Repo/Root'
To add an exception for this directory, call:

git config --global --add safe.directory C:/Your/Repo/Root

Set the environment variable GIT_TEST_DEBUG_UNSAFE_DIRECTORIES=true and run
again for more information.

It is important for the namespace temp folder to be owned by the user IRIS runs as. (On Unix, commonly irisusr; on Windows, generally a designated service account or SYSTEM.) Setting this config flag is unlikely to actually help; just make sure the ownership is correct.

Interacting with Remotes

If you want to interact with remotes from VSCode/Studio directly (e.g., to push/pull), you must use ssh (rather than https), create a public/private key pair to identify the instance (not yourself), configure the private key file for use in Settings, and configure the public key as a deploy key in the remote(s).

IRIS Privileges

For developers to be able to run this extension, they’ll need the USE privilege on %System_Callout.

Setting up multiple GitHub deploy keys on one machine

Assuming you have the local and remote repositories created,

  1. Create your key pair using ssh-keygen.
  2. Add the public key to GitHub.
  3. You can try setting remotes with the URL your remote repository provides, but sometimes your firewall might cause issues and refuse the SSH connection. In that case, I’ve found that changing the remote URL to the following is helpful:
  4. Copy the private key into 2 locations
    1. <path to IRIS Instance storage>\mgr\<private key>
    2. ~/.ssh/<private key>
  5. Make sure to set the owner and permissions for the private key correctly. For Windows, go to where the private key is stored in IRIS and edit the owner to be the admin, disable inheritance and remove all access to the key to every user except the admin.
  6. In git source control settings, set the path to the private key as the one in IRIS.
  7. Change the default ssh command in the git config for your repository as:
    git config core.sshCommand 'ssh -i ~/.ssh/<private key name>'
  8. Test the refresh button for the remote branches on the WebUI, fetch from the source control menu in Studio or VS Code, and git fetch in Git Bash. All 3 should work without any issues.

During Development

:warning: Whenever any code in this project is updated outside the server (e.g. after every git pull), you have to run zpm "load <absolute path to git-source-control>". Otherwise, the changes won’t be reflected on the server. However, if you load git-source-control via the InterSystems package manager and run git pull via the extension itself with the default pull event handler configured, it’ll just work.

Made with
zpm install git-source-control download archive
2.3.130 Apr, 2024
Developer Environment
Works with
InterSystems IRIS
First published
25 Oct, 2021