Create and manage a new GitLab project


You can use this code to create all your new projects with a specific template. For instance, you can have a first issue to welcome all collaborators, explain them how your repository works and ask them to answer with a comment. This will make sure all collaborators know how to find issues and how to interact with you.

Given you have a account, this code can also be run to contribute to ‘gitlabr’ and set a testing environment (See

Set up GitLab connection

# GitLab con
  gitlab_url = "",
  private_token = Sys.getenv("GITLAB_COM_TOKEN")

Define the project

test_project_name <- "testor.main"
main_branch <- "main"

Create a project called testor.main, owned by the user

Project is initialized with a README file.

project_info <- gl_new_project(
  name = test_project_name,
  default_branch = main_branch,
  initialize_with_readme = TRUE

Check created branch (depending on GitLab, main branch may still be “master”)

gl_list_branches(project = project_info$id)

Open the URL of the project


Add/modify and commit the

# Content of the README
content_md <- paste("
# testor.main

Repository to test R package ['gitlabr'](

# Push file with a commit
  project = project_info$id,
  file_path = "",
  content = content_md,
  commit_message = "Update README",
  branch = main_branch,
  overwrite = TRUE

Create a new branch named “for-tests”

# Create the new branch
gl_create_branch(project = project_info$id, branch = "for-tests", ref = main_branch)

# List branches to see if it was created
# Note that branch creation can take a while, wait a little before using `gl_list_branches()`
# gl_list_branches(project = project_info$id)

Add and commit a CI file (“.gitlab-ci.yml”)

The “.gitlab-ci.yml” below is a simple example of CI with artifact. If you want a proper CI for your R package or bookdown project, you may want to look at gitlabr::use_gitlab_ci() and run it once you cloned your project locally.

content_ci <- paste("
  script: echo 'test 1 2 1 2' > 'test.txt'
      - test.txt

  project = project_info$id,
  file_path = ".gitlab-ci.yml",
  content = content_ci,
  commit_message = "Add CI to the main branch",
  branch = main_branch,
  overwrite = TRUE

Use the commit created above and add a follow-up comment

# Get list of commits in default branch
commits_in_main <- gl_get_commits(project = project_info$id, ref_name = main_branch)
# Add a comment to this commmit
  project = project_info$id,
  id = commits_in_main$id[1],
  text = "Write a comment"

Create a first issue (#1) with a follow-up comment

# Create an issue
issue_info <- gl_create_issue(
  project = project_info$id,
  title = "Dont close issue 1",
  description = "An example issue to not close for tests"

# Create a comment to the issue
  project = project_info$id,
  id = issue_info$iid,
  text = "A comment on issue to not close"

Delete project