Here are some useful recipes for Doctr.

Deploy docs from any branch

By default, Doctr only deploys docs from the master branch, but it can be useful to deploy docs from other branches, to test them out.

The branch name on Travis is stored in the $TRAVIS_BRANCH environment variable. One suggestion would be to deploy the docs to a special directory for each branch. The following will deploy the docs to docs on master and docs-branch on branch.

- if [[ "${TRAVIS_BRANCH}" == "master" ]]; then
    doctr deploy docs;
    doctr deploy --no-require-master "docs-$TRAVIS_BRANCH";

This will not remove the docs after the branch is merged. You will need to do that manually.

Note: It is only possible to deploy docs from branches on the same repo. For security purposes, it is not possible to deploy from branches on forks (Travis does not allow access to encrypted environment variables on pull requests from forks). If you want to deploy the docs for a branch from a pull request, you will need to push it up to the main repository.

Deploy docs from a non-master branch

If you want to deploy docs from only specific branches other than just master, you can use the --branch-whitelist flag. This is useful if your default branch is named something other than master. The default --branch-whitelist is master. --branch-whitelist can take any number of arguments, so it should generally go last in your doctr deploy call.

- doctr deploy --built-docs build/ . --branch-whitelist develop

Deploy docs from git tags

Travis CI runs separate builds for git tags that are pushed to your repo. By default, doctr does not deploy on these builds, but it can be enabled with the --build-tags flag to doctr deploy. This is useful if you want to use doctr to deploy versioned docs for releases, for example.

On Travis CI, the tag is set to the environment variable $TRAVIS_TAG, which is empty otherwise. The following will deploy the docs to dev for normal master builds, and version-<TAG NAME> for tag builds:

- if [[ -z "$TRAVIS_TAG" ]]; then
- doctr deploy --build-tags --built-docs build/ $DEPLOY_DIR

If you want to deploy only on a tag, use --branch-whitelist with no arguments to tell doctr to not deploy from any branch. For instance, to deploy only tags to latest:

- doctr deploy latest --built-docs build/ --build-tags --branch-whitelist

Deploy to a separate repo

By default, Doctr deploys to the gh-pages branch of the same repository it is run from, but you can deploy to the gh-pages branch of any repository.

To do this, specify a separate deploy and build repository when running doctr configure (it will ask you for the two separately). You will need admin access to the deploy repository to upload the deploy key (doctr configure will prompt you for your GitHub credentials). If you do not have access, you can run doctr configure --no-upload-key. This will print out the public deploy key, which you can then give to someone who has admin access to add to the form on GitHub (doctr configure will print the public key and the url of the form for someone with admin access to paste it in).

In your .travis.yml, specify the deploy repository with

- doctr deploy --deploy-repo <deploy repo> deploy_dir

The instructions from doctr configure will also give you the correct command to run.

Setting up Doctr for a repo you don’t have admin access to

doctr configure by default asks for your GitHub credentials so that it can upload the deploy key it creates. However, if you do not have admin access to the repository you are deploying to, you cannot upload the deploy key.

No worries, you can still help. Run

doctr configure --no-upload-key

This will set up doctr, but not require any GitHub credentials. Follow the instructions on screen. Create a new branch, commit the github_deploy_key_org_repo.enc file, and edit .travis.yml to include the encrypted environment variable and the call to doctr deploy.

Then, create a pull request to the repository. Tell the owner of the repository to add the public key which Doctr has printed as a deploy key for the repo (Doctr will also print the url where they can add this). Don’t worry, the key is a public SSH key, so it’s OK to post it publicly in the pull request.

Post-processing the docs on gh-pages

Sometimes you may want to post-process your docs on the gh-pages branch. For example, you may want to add some links to other versions in your index.html.

You can run any command on the gh-pages branch with the doctr deploy --command flag. This is run after the docs are synced to gh-pages but before they are committed and uploaded.

For example, if you have a script in gh-pages called, you can run

doctr deploy --command '' deploy_dir

Using a separate command to deploy to gh-pages

If you already have an existing tool to deploy to gh-pages, you can still use Doctr to manage your deploy key. Use

doctr deploy --no-sync --command 'command to deploy' deploy_dir

The command to deploy should add any files that you want committed to the index.

Deploying to a GitHub wiki

Doctr supports deploying to GitHub wikis. Just use org/ when as the deploy repo running doctr configure. When deploying, use

doctr deploy --deploy-repo org/ .

The deploy key for pushing to a wiki is the same as for pushing to the repo itself, so if you are pushing to both, you will not need more than one deploy key.

Using doctr with * pages

Github allows users to create pages at the root URL of users’ or organizations’ pages. For example, an organization coolteam can setup a repository at and the html files in the master branch of this repository will be served to

With doctr, it is necessary to separate the website source files, e.g. input to a static site generator, from the output HTML files into two different branches. The output files must be stored in the master branch, as per Github’s specification. The source files can be stored in another custom branch of your choosing, below the name source is chosen.

To do this:

  1. Create a new branch for the source files, e.g. named source, and push this to Github.
  2. Set this branch as the default branch in the Github settings for the repository.
  3. Run the doctr configure command in the source branch. The source and output repositories should both be set to coolteam/ in the configuration options.
  4. Commit the generated encryption key and the .travis.yml file to the source branch. Do not commit a .travis.yml file to both the master and source branches, as this will also cause and infinite loop of Travis builds.
  5. Lastly, in .travis.yml make sure that the doctr deploy command white lists the source branch, like so:
doctr deploy --branch-whitelist source  --built-docs output-directory/ .

The source files should only be pushed to the source branch and all output files will be pushed to the master branch during the Travis builds.