This site runs on GitHub Pages. In redesigning it to use its fancy TI-99/4A theme, I made use of the jekyll-menus plugin. Unfortunately, GitHub Pages (GHP) doesn’t support that plugin, so I needed a work-around.

Conceptually what we’re doing is quite simple: we’re just going to configure GitHub Pages to treat our site as a static site and set up our GHP site to point to Jekyll’s output directory, _site. We’ll track our changes to our Jekyll source files in a brand new repository, and just use the GHP repository for the compiled output to be served to the world.

In what follows, the repository is a new repository that will now contain Jekyll source files. is the old repository, and will now contain only the static output produced when we run jekyll build in the root of the repository.

It’s worth noting that the below is a reconstruction of what I did to set up this site with jekyll-menus. It’s possible that it has a typo or something that’ll accidentally ruin your day, so take that into account before pasting things into your command prompt.

  1. Set up the relevant repository names (I didn’t actually do this, but if you’re copy-pasting it will help)
    export GH_USER=ffleming
  2. Copy the old repository to a new directory and remove the .git directory
    cp -r "$OLD_REPO" "$NEW_REPO"
    rm -r "$NEW_REPO"/.git
  3. Initialize a new repository, set the remote. You should also make NEW_REPO on your remote
    cd $NEW_REPO
    git init
    git remote add origin"$GH_USER"/"$NEW_REPO".git
    cd ..
  4. Make sure that NEW_REPO ignores _site (don’t do this if its .gitignore already contains the entry)
    echo _site >> "$NEW_REPO"/.gitignore
  5. Migrate the old repo’s history to the _site directory.
    mv "$OLD_REPO"/.git "$NEW_REPO"/_site
  6. Build
    cd "$NEW_REPO"
    bundle exec jekyll build
  7. Ensure that GitHub Pages will treat your GHP site as static
    touch _site/.nojekyll
  8. Ensure that your CNAME file exists in the GHP site (jekyll build doesn’t copy it over)
    cp CNAME _site
  9. Push your work
    git add -m 'migration' .
    git push origin master
    cd _site
    git add -m 'migration'
    git push origin master
    cd ..

That should’ve done it. Unfortunately, every time you run jekyll build, Jekyll will remove the important .nojekyll and CNAME files. To deal with that, made a little bash script to build and deploy the static site to GitHub Pages when I’m done previewing it locally.

Note that the script will not commit changes to your actual source files in NEW_REPO. That’s on you to version appropriately - this is just a deploy script.

set -euo pipefail


bundle exec jekyll build
cp CNAME _site/
touch _site/.nojekyll
pushd _site
git add .
git commit -m "automated build"
git push origin
echo done