Install abc-classroom & Setup GitHub Authentication

Installation Instructions

To install the release version of abc-classroom:

pip install abc-classroom

If you want the development version, you can install directly from GitHub:

$ pip install git+git://

Setup git and GitHub

abc-classroom uses git locally, and also interacts with GitHub (to create template repositories or push to student repositories). For local git actions, abc-classroom uses your local git settings. For GitHub actions, it requires that you authenticate through GitHub to generate an access token for the GitHub API.

Follow the steps below to set up git and create your GitHub token.

1. Install git and setup ssh keys

If you aren’t already using git, use the instructions below to install and setup git:


We link to the GitHub documentation for setting up git, but git is not limited to GitHub, and there are many other sets of instructions out there.

abc-classroom uses git + GitHub via SSH rather than https, so you need to setup ssh keys for passwordless access. There are three steps to setup ssh on your computer:

  1. Check to see if you already have an ssh key installed on your computer locally

  2. Generate a new key -

  3. Add the key to GitHub -

2. Authenticate to GitHub for abc-classroom

abc-classroom needs to be able to create repositories and push to student repositories in the course organization. To do this, we need to setup an access token for the GitHub API.

  1. Run abc-init at the command line. If you don’t already have a token, abc-classroom will prompt you to authenticate through GitHub.

  2. Open a web browser, go to, log in to GitHub (if you aren’t already) and enter the temporary code provided by abc-classroom:


    When you git Continue on the web page, you will see the permissions that the abc-classroom app requests. Accept the request to authenticate the app.

  3. Return to the command line and press <RETURN>. abc-classroom will verify your access token, print a success message, and save the token locally in a file called .abc-classroom.tokens.yml in your home directory.

If after running abc-init, you instead see the message Access token is present and valid; successfully authenticated as user <your-username, then you already have a token.


If you installed and used abc-classroom prior to November 2020, you probably have both a local tokens file and a personal access token stored on GitHub. Due to changes in GitHub authentication, we recommend that you delete the local .abc-classroom.tokens.yml file and also the ABC-classroom workflow helper token from GitHub ( and run abc-init again to generate a new, more secure, token.

Un-authenticating abc-classroom

If you want to remove the abc-classroom access to your account, visit and revoke authorization to abc-classroom-bot.

If you want to authenticate to abc-classroom with a different GitHub account, remove the local .abc-classroom.tokens.yml file, re-run abc-init and log into GitHub with the alternate credentials to grant access.

Installing the abc-classroom-bot on the organization

The abc-classroom-bot is a GitHub App that must be installed on the organization(s) where you want to create template and student repositories. At this time, the app is not yet available on the public GitHub Marketplace. Please contact the abc-classroom developers if you want to install the app.