Jekyll on Github - Quick guide

May 10, 2015

Jekyll is a simple static site generator, open source and written in Ruby by Github’s co-founder Tom Preston-Werner.

Github fully support Jekyll, allowing for a great workflow and UX. This make the jekyll + github combo a good candidate for blogging. Some added benefits:

  • Don’t worry about hosting anymore thanks to Github pages.
  • Write and work on your blog offline thanks to GIT.
  • Take advantage of GIT Versioning + GITHUB PullReqiests.
  • Use markdown and the editor of your choice to write your posts.
  • Reduce switching costs thanks to a future proof Open Source Stack.

To set up your blog using jekyll and github pages just follow the next steps. You’ll be up and running in seconds.

Step 1: Fork a theme

Many great and free themes can be found on

  • Kactus - A port of Cactus’s default theme. The one I use for this site.
  • Mediator - A medium inspired Jekyll blog theme.
  • Pixyll - A simple Jekyll theme that emphasizes content
  • Kasper - A port of Ghost’s Casper default theme.

    Just pick the theme you prefere and fork it.

Step 2: Rename your repository

Rename the repository you just forked as where username is your username on GitHub.

Step 3 - Enjoy

There is no step 3, your new blog is now live and reachable at the following address:

To setup your blog, edit the _config.yml file. You can also customize your theme by modifing any of the _layouts or _includes files.


To publish a new article just add a new markdown file in the _posts directory, is that simple.

Testing locally

First make sure to have Jekyll installed.

$ gem install jekyll

and then you can simply run it from the terminal

jekyll serve

For more details check the documentation. Alternatively, you could install Jekyll via Github’s own bundle. This will allow you to ensure that your computer most closely matches the GitHub Pages settings.

Check out the Jekyll docs for more info on how to get the most out of Jekyll. File all bugs/feature requests at Jekyll’s GitHub repo.

For more informations also check Github Pages.

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