1.1.2 • Public • Published

Probot: Stale

WARNING fork of probot/stale, which is severly out-of-date. patches and issues are present in their repo, waiting to be updated. this package should be removed when probot/stale updates their dep stack and is first-class library compatible. https://github.com/probot/stale/issues/253 is the major gate

A GitHub App built with Probot that closes abandoned Issues and Pull Requests after a period of inactivity.

Inspired by @parkr's auto-reply bot that runs @jekyllbot.


  1. Configure the GitHub App
  2. Create .github/stale.yml based on the following template.
  3. It will start scanning for stale issues and/or pull requests within an hour.

A .github/stale.yml file is required to enable the plugin. The file can be empty, or it can override any of these default settings:

# Configuration for probot-stale - https://github.com/probot/stale

# Number of days of inactivity before an Issue or Pull Request becomes stale
daysUntilStale: 60

# Number of days of inactivity before an Issue or Pull Request with the stale label is closed.
# Set to false to disable. If disabled, issues still need to be closed manually, but will remain marked as stale.
daysUntilClose: 7

# Only issues or pull requests with all of these labels are check if stale. Defaults to `[]` (disabled)
onlyLabels: []

# Issues or Pull Requests with these labels will never be considered stale. Set to `[]` to disable
  - pinned
  - security
  - "[Status] Maybe Later"

# Set to true to ignore issues in a project (defaults to false)
exemptProjects: false

# Set to true to ignore issues in a milestone (defaults to false)
exemptMilestones: false

# Set to true to ignore issues with an assignee (defaults to false)
exemptAssignees: false

# Label to use when marking as stale
staleLabel: wontfix

# Comment to post when marking as stale. Set to `false` to disable
markComment: >
  This issue has been automatically marked as stale because it has not had
  recent activity. It will be closed if no further activity occurs. Thank you
  for your contributions.

# Comment to post when removing the stale label.
# unmarkComment: >
#   Your comment here.

# Comment to post when closing a stale Issue or Pull Request.
# closeComment: >
#   Your comment here.

# Limit the number of actions per hour, from 1-30. Default is 30
limitPerRun: 30

# Limit to only `issues` or `pulls`
# only: issues

# Optionally, specify configuration settings that are specific to just 'issues' or 'pulls':
# pulls:
#   daysUntilStale: 30
#   markComment: >
#     This pull request has been automatically marked as stale because it has not had
#     recent activity. It will be closed if no further activity occurs. Thank you
#     for your contributions.

# issues:
#   exemptLabels:
#     - confirmed

How are issues and pull requests considered stale?

The app uses GitHub's updated search qualifier to determine staleness. Any change to an issue or pull request is considered an update, including comments, changing labels, applying or removing milestones, or pushing commits.

An easy way to check and see which issues or pull requests will initially be marked as stale is to add the updated search qualifier to either the issue or pull request page filter for your repository: updated:<2017-07-01. Adjust the date to be 60 days ago (or whatever you set for daysUntilStale) to see which issues or pull requests will be marked.

Why did only some issues and pull requests get marked stale?

To avoid triggering abuse prevention mechanisms on GitHub, only 30 issues and pull requests will be marked or closed per hour. If your repository has more than that, it will just take a few hours or days to mark them all.

How long will it take?

The app runs on a scheduled basis and in batches in order to avoid hitting rate limit ceilings.

This means that even after you initially install the GitHub configuration and add the stale.yml file, you may not see it act immediately.

If the bot doesn't run within 24 hours of initial setup, feel free to open an issue and we can investigate further.

Is closing stale issues really a good idea?

In an ideal world with infinite resources, there would be no need for this app.

But in any successful software project, there's always more work to do than people to do it. As more and more work piles up, it becomes paralyzing. Just making decisions about what work should and shouldn't get done can exhaust all available resources. In the experience of the maintainers of this app—and the hundreds of other projects and organizations that use it—focusing on issues that are actively affecting humans is an effective method for prioritizing work.

To some, a robot trying to close stale issues may seem inhospitable or offensive to contributors. But the alternative is to disrespect them by setting false expectations and implicitly ignoring their work. This app makes it explicit: if work is not progressing, then it's stale. A comment is all it takes to keep the conversation alive.


See docs/deploy.md if you would like to run your own instance of this plugin.


If you have suggestions for how Stale could be improved, or want to report a bug, open an issue! We'd love all and any contributions.

Note that all interactions fall under the Probot Code of Conduct.


ISC Copyright © 2017-2018 Brandon Keepers


npm i @dino-dna/probot-stale

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