Using Obsidian in conjunction with GitHub offers a powerful solution for teams to create, manage, and maintain their documentation collaboratively. This post guides you through setting up an Obsidian vault with a GitHub repository to enable seamless documentation workflow for your team.

Setting Up Your GitHub Repository

  1. Create a New GitHub Repository: Start by creating a new repository on GitHub. Include an `.md` (Markdown) file to serve as the starting point of your documentation.

  2. Generate a Personal Access Token: Follow GitHub’s guide to create a personal access token. This token will allow you to clone and push changes to your repository securely.

  3. Install Git: Ensure Git is installed on your machine. This is necessary for cloning the repository and managing versions of your documentation.

  4. Clone the Repository: Use your personal access token to clone the repository to your local machine. Replace <PERSONAL_ACCESS_TOKEN>, <USERNAME>, and <REPO> with your information:


Integrating Obsidian

  1. Install Obsidian: If you haven’t already, you can download and install Obsidian from the official website or use Homebrew, a package manager for macOS, to install it. To install Obsidian using Homebrew, open your terminal and run the following command:

    brew install --cask obsidian

    After installation, open the cloned repository folder as your vault.

  2. Install the Git Community Plugin: Inside Obsidian, navigate to the community plugins section and install the Git plugin. This plugin will enable you to commit and push changes directly from Obsidian.

Enhancing Your Workflow

To ensure a smooth workflow and keep your vault clean, consider the following enhancements:

  • Exclude Unnecessary Files: Create a `.gitignore` file in your vault’s root directory. Add configurations to exclude cache files, system-specific files, and Obsidian’s settings that you don’t want to track. For example:

    # to exclude Obsidian's settings (including plugin and hotkey configurations)
    # Add below lines to exclude OS settings and caches
  • Automatic Backups: Enable automatic backups to periodically save your work without manual intervention. You can set up the plugin to commit changes at specified intervals, ensuring your documentation is always up-to-date.

  • Pull Changes on Startup: Enable the “Pull updates on startup” option in the Git plugin’s settings to configure the plugin to pull changes from the remote repository each time you start Obsidian. This setting, found under the “Backup” section, ensures that your local vault is always synchronized with the latest changes made by your team.

  • Hotkeys for Common Git Actions: Assign hotkeys to frequent Git operations like commit, push, and pull. This streamlines your workflow by allowing you to quickly perform version control tasks without leaving Obsidian.

Source Control and History Views

  • Using the Source Control View: Access the Source Control View by using the command palette (Ctrl+P or Cmd+P) and searching for “Open Source Control View”. This view lets you stage changes, commit them, and push to your remote repository, all from within Obsidian.

  • Using the History View: Access the History View by using the command palette (Ctrl+P or Cmd+P) and searching for “Open History View”. The History View displays a list of commits with their messages, authors, and timestamps. Clicking on a commit shows the changes made, offering insights into the documentation’s evolution.

Configuring these features enhances your documentation process, making it more efficient and collaborative. It also helps in maintaining a detailed history of changes, which is invaluable for tracking progress and resolving any issues that may arise.

Collaborative Documentation Best Practices

  • Commit Messages: Encourage clear and concise commit messages that accurately describe the changes made.
  • Documentation Structure: Organize your documentation in a way that’s easy for all team members to navigate and contribute to.
  • Regular Pulls: To avoid conflicts, pull changes frequently, especially before starting a new editing session.


By integrating Obsidian with GitHub, teams can leverage the flexibility and power of markdown-based documentation with the version control and collaboration features of GitHub. This setup not only enhances the documentation process but also fosters a collaborative environment for team members to contribute their knowledge and expertise.

For a deeper dive into the Git plugin’s features and setup, especially for mobile users and advanced configurations, check out the official documentation or the Github page.

Remember, effective documentation is a continuous effort that requires the collaboration and contributions of all team members. Happy documenting!