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InfoQ Homepage News GitLab Adopts CLI Project to Bring GitLab to the Terminal

GitLab Adopts CLI Project to Bring GitLab to the Terminal

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Open-core DevOps tool vendor GitLab has announced their adoption of glab - a command-line interface (CLI) tool for interacting with GitLab. This furthers GitLab's reach into all stages of the code writing process.

Written in Go, glab was created in July 2020 by Ghanaian software engineer Clement Sam, and has been worked on by over 80 contributors since. Its goal is to deliver similar functionality to the GitHub CLI tool 'gh'. This includes working with GitLab issues and merge requests, and watching pipelines running directly from the CLI. glab works with both the SaaS product, and with self-hosted GitLab installations. The GitLab CLI uses commands structured like glab <command> <subcommand> [flags] to perform many of the tasks normally actioned from the GitLab user interface.

GitLab's stated aim is to support developers closer to where they do their meaningful work, and the adoption of glab adds to earlier work to support developers using popular editor VS Code with a GitLab Workflow plugin. With the CLI integration for GitLab now being available and officially adopted, developers no longer need to switch frequently between their Web browser and Terminal. Previously there was a need to work with the git command-line for file commits, pushes and pulls, but with the Web browser to create associated merge requests and run pipelines.

With the adoption process taking place over the past few months, access to the wider GitLab organization has improved security around glab, as GitLab's application security team have reviewed the project to ensure it is safe and secure for users. glab uses a Personal Access Token (PAT) from GitLab for authentication, similar to other CLI and GUI tools for interacting with source code.

Now renamed as the GitLab CLI, and moved to GitLab's own hosting, version 1.24.1 of the tool has recently been released. The community has been retained after the transition - with nearly 40 contributions coming from the community since the adoption, including from the founder Clement himself. Future releases are expected to address some of the backlog of issues from the project, and GitLab has indicated a willingness to learn what the community wants from such a CLI tool, and how it can be enhanced to further improve developers' workflows.

The glab CLI is now available from its new repo on GitLab, and can be installed on macOS, Windows and Linux.

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