Today i setup a private mirror of the busybox repository:

git init --bare busybox.git
cd busybox.git
git remote add origin git://
git config remote.origin.fetch 'refs/heads/*:refs/heads/*'

The last line is important, otherwise git remote update would only update the ref/remotes sections and not ref/heads. You can always check with git show-ref which refs are currently defined.

To update the git repo, you can schedule git remote update via cron.

Also, when updating the head refs this way, neither the post-receive nor the post-update hooks do fire. If you rely on those hooks for generating notifications et cetera, you might want to manually invoke them via hooks/post-update from cron.

Because git remote update overwrites refs without question, i want to protect myself from accidentally pushing to it (and loosing my commits afterwards). To achieve this, i added a hooks/pre-receive script blocking any push operation and reminding me of the state of the mirror:

echo "Read-only mirror of $(git config remote.origin.url)" 2>&1
exit 1