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Copilot Lvl 2
Message 1 of 4

Github Actions workspace is empty

Solved! Go to Solution.

According to the documentation for the GITHUB_WORKSPACE environment variable here:, the Github workspace patch should contain a copy of the source code.


However, this appears to not be the case. The directory is empty when I use it as the working directory and run `ls`.


My workflow looks like this:


name: Publish the website

- test-site

name: Publish site
runs-on: ubuntu-latest
- name: Build site assets
working-directory: ${{ github.workspace }}
run: ls -la
- name: Publish site to calcite-site repository
working-directory: site
run: echo Publishing..  


Is Github Actions suppose to include a copy of the repository in the working directory or should I use the checkout action to check a copy out?

3 Replies
Copilot Lvl 3
Message 2 of 4

Re: Github Actions workspace is empty

Coming from the "old" (HCL-based) GitHub Actions, I ran into this problem, too.


I think you do have to use the checkout action first, though. That solved my problem.


Like so:


      - uses: actions/checkout@v1


I verified that without it `ls github/workspace` is completely empty.


I think they might have just copied the part of the docs from the old version. Will send an email to support.


Ps.: can't believe these forums don't support GitHub markdown syntax :( 


Copilot Lvl 3
Message 3 of 4

Re: Github Actions workspace is empty

wrote this to support:


Hi octocats,


This is about the new, YML-based GitHub actions.


As per the new docs, I understand that I always need to run a checkout action to use my repo content.

Also in the docs, there's still this part:


> The GitHub workspace directory path. The workspace directory contains a subdirectory with a copy of your repository.


I think this might be in error, perhaps copy/pasted from the old HCL-based GitHub actions.

If I understand correctly, the new GitHub actions always creates `GITHUB_WORKSPACE`, maps it, but leaves it empty by default.



Copilot Lvl 2
Message 4 of 4

Re: Github Actions workspace is empty

Thanks for confirming @maxheld83! It looks like the documentation just needs to be updated.