Backing up GitHub organisation with gitcellar

rOpenSci package or resource used*

What did you do?

I replicated the back-up infrastructure from rOpenSci in our GitHub organisation: epiverse-trace · GitHub.

Migration archives are created with gitcellar and are then uploaded to a DigitalOcean S3-compatible space with the aws.s3 R package.

This is automated via GitHub Actions and runs on a weekly basis (each Saturday in the night).

For increased security, I have created a dedicated GitHub account, @epiverse-trace-bot, which hosts the repository with the automation and also provides a Personal Access Token (PAT) with minimal permissions.

URL or code snippet for your use case*




Field(s) of application

devops, epidemiology


Thank you for open-sourcing a part of your internal infrastructure! And double thank you for sharing it in an easily re-usable format, as an R package!

Twitter handle



One current point that I’m not completely satisfied with at the moment is how to test that it’s possible to restore backups.

This goes slightly beyond the scope of the work you presented in the blog post and packaged in gitcellar but I’d be very happy to hear your thoughts on this :smile:


Right, I haven’t tested that part myself either. A possible test would be to create a new GitLab repository based on the GitHub archive? Please report back if you do that. :wink:

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I’ve dug a little into the restoration process and I believe one of the limitations would be restoring comments and PRs because AFAIK, you can not create an issue or comment as someone else.

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