Jekyll with GitHub pages is an awesome way to build a developer blog or project site (find out how). However, one day after updating my local environment with the latest GitHub Pages gems (as GitHub tells us to do), I started to get errors about GitHub Metadata and GitHub API authentication anytime I made edits while serving the site locally. WTF?!?! This post will tell you how to fix it.


Here is the full error that I was getting in the console:

Regenerating: 1 file(s) changed at 2016-09-13 13:10:58    GitHub Metadata: No GitHub API authentication could be found. Some fields may be missing or have incorrect data.
    Error: SSL_connect returned=1 errno=0 state=SSLv3 read server certificate B: certificate verify failed
    Error: Run jekyll build --trace for more information.

Initially the site would generate and be served successfully, but if I made any edits I would get the error in my terminal and my edits wouldn’t be served. This means every time I made a change and wanted to see what it looked like, I would have to terminate the Jekyll process and have it regenerate the site all over again. So annoying!

Fix It!

Alas, after much searching I found a fix. Just follow these steps:

  1. Create a personal access token in GitHub. This takes just a second, see GitHub’s documentation. When picking the scope(s) that you want to grant to the token, just select the repo checkbox.
  2. Add a new system environment variable on your machine named JEKYLL_GITHUB_TOKEN and set the value equal to the personal access token you generated.
  3. Go here, copy all the text in the page, and save it as a file named cacert.pem somewhere on your local machine.
  4. Add a new system environment variable on your machine named SSL_CERT_FILE and set the value equal to the full file path of where you saved the cacert.pem file.
  5. If you are on Windows then you must restart your machine.

You are now on your merry way to being able to make edits while the Jekyll site is being served.