Getting "fatal: Authentication failed for..." error

bbrewder August 14, 2017

In SourceTree, I'm getting the "fatal: Authentication failed for..." error when I try to Push/Pull from origin. 

The Git terminal from SourceTree asks for my username/password and, when I enter it, it works correctly (I'm able to do a push/pull anyway). However, nothing I've tried will allow me to use the push/pull buttons in SourceTree. I've updated my Git username every place I've been able to see something that resembles a username, I've gone to Tools > Options > Authentication > [My Account] and set the password (which is a private access token).

I saw a similar question that mentioned "There is a SourceTree Application password stored in the login keychain." But I have no idea what the login keychain is or how I can fix it in SourceTree.


- SourceTree version

- Git version 2.7.0

- Windows 10 Pro, 64 bit

- origin server is Visual Studio Team Services

I'm not sure why it stopped working (I haven't changed my VSTS password and all my private access tokens are still valid), but I seem to recall an odd password box that popped up a week or so ago that I believe came from SourceTree. I might have entered the wrong password, but didn't see any problems at that time (I haven't pushed/pulled since then, so wouldn't have seen any problems until today).

What am I missing?

15 answers

1 accepted

177 votes
Answer accepted
bbrewder August 14, 2017

David's answer to this question worked for me...

The only thing that worked for me was navigating to C:\Users\USERNAME\AppData\Local\Atlassian\SourceTree and removing the passwd file.

Once that file was deleted, I just did a "Push" and it finally asked for my password. 

A note to Atlassian, there should be a much simpler way to do this than spending hours searching the Internet looking for an answer. If getting the Authentication page to work as expected is not possible, then perhaps just a button that users that are having trouble can press on the Authentication page that would reset all the passwords (basically just delete this file for us). 

Mariano Gomez Bidondo August 23, 2017

Thanks a lot! I was speending 2 days touching options in the sourcetree. This answerd save my day!

Like # people like this
Aiuursrage2k August 28, 2017

yeah it worked for me as well. I cant believe that source tree would be so lazy, this is a software thats used by millions of devs.

Like # people like this
Akul Bhatnagar September 3, 2017


Marcin Radomski September 13, 2017

OMG thanks, It was driving me crazy

Dheeraj Sampath September 13, 2017

I resorted to git bash since source tree stopped working. Thanks for the fix. Sourcetree! \,,/

Like Mahieu Pointecouteau likes this
Sargis1991 September 14, 2017

For some retarded reason the field to type in your email adress is greyed out and it has an email adress in it that doesn't even have an atlassian account. I can not change my email adress whatsoever. I've deleted the account file and restarted it. I've checked the tools bar into the authentication and removed everything there. I've even reinstalled source tree and it still won't let me change the email adress. Holy shit I regret updating to this horrible version. I'm stuck not being able to fetch or pull anything. Even the crash report pop up crashes when I submit this shit.

Like # people like this
Sargis1991 September 14, 2017

Fix: I removed everything from sourcetree and downloaded an older version. 

Like verhoog_s2 likes this
Joel Dennis September 27, 2017

Removing the passwd file worked for me. This was driving me crazy for the past few weeks. Thanks for the solution! I was actually looking for other options to use instead of Sourcetree until finding this fix. It would really helpful if there were an easier way to force the password prompt.

Like David John Brown likes this
Steven Jaszkowiak October 3, 2017

Does anyone know what the password file is called?

Eric Wolfe October 17, 2017

thanks! This helped a lot.  It is a pity that such a simple thing is broken.  

Like David John Brown likes this
Ramon Ramoss November 14, 2017


Pavan Kumar November 29, 2017

It worked. Now I'm able to do all the operations in source tree tool. Thank you

Alex King January 3, 2018

Still working in 2018. Just solved my problem- next clone prompted for me to enter a password, and all went smoothly.

Radek Marik January 10, 2018

I updated the SourceTree and the authentications failed. I wiped out the SourceTree (uninstall and the directory deleted) and installed SourceTree. I had the same problem: after asking the password to the local GIT server the session failed because of SSH_ASKPASS. I wiped out the SourceTree again and installed version. It works normally.

SourceTree is a great tool if it works. The obvious recent modifications to the authentification code do not work.

Arien Shibani January 18, 2018


Gerardo Lopez January 30, 2018

It worked for me too. Stuff like this is why I down vote SourceTree when asked if I would recommend it. It actually prompts an email to my manager to go back to TFS.

Trivikram Godse February 18, 2018

Same here it worked for me after installing Version. I hope atlassian is taking notes. GIT+SSH with username password does not work on Please fix it.

duodvk March 6, 2018

I've reinstalled sourcetree and git (without credential manager and with it), generated several github acess tokens and without success.... and your solution helps! So THANK YOU ! I think that it should be in the docs or in the bug tracker :)

Immanuel Comer March 12, 2018

It seems that deleting (or perhaps renaming) a file worked for me as well. Thanks @bbrewder!

Of course, I had to find the path for MacOS.

For anyone else looking for that path it is ~/Library/Application Support/SourceTree and then look for a file similar to username\

I simply appended the filename (just in case it didn't work). Afterward, I did a fetch (I'd imagine any server command would work) and I was prompted for a new password. 

Like # people like this
JB Rolland March 27, 2018

Seriously?! a dev tool having such basic issue... I can't imagine amount of time lost by anyone using it including me

Thanks for the tips Brian

Like David John Brown likes this
Thao Bui-Bond April 4, 2018

I had the same error and I saw this post, but deleting the password file did not work for me.  it turned out that my VSO personal access token was expired.  I had to renew it.  Just FYI for anybody who use visual studio online.

Sushmitha Hiremath May 16, 2018

Thank you, this worked for me as well :-)

Krzysztof Gałązka August 8, 2018

Thanks a million!

James Dougan August 11, 2018

Thanks sooo much. i have looked for hours for this. 

K Hendrawan August 12, 2018

Thank you so much... the tip still works today!

James Dougan August 12, 2018

So before a fancy login box came up but my password never worked in it. But then when I detest this. The fancy login box didn't come up but a not so fancy box replaced it. The only difference is that my password worked on this one. So thanks for this :)

Robert Pal September 11, 2018

Thanks a lot! That was the problem!

Satheesh Davidson September 22, 2018

Thanks a lot

cramirez_ntst October 10, 2018

Thank you!  This was exactly the answer I was looking for.

James Boswell October 29, 2018

Just hit this same problem. Deleting the pwd file worked.

This bug needs fixing! How many thousands of dev hours are wasted on this stupid bug!

Like Aleksandr likes this
yemkadel November 9, 2018

Thanks a lot. it worked seamlessly

noldish November 19, 2018

Still working. Thx a lot

AndreyNekrash November 26, 2018

It's a pity, we have to do such things manually after a year...

paolo_gianfelici December 1, 2018

Thanks a lot.
After 1 year this bug is still present and it almost led me to use gitkraken.
Please do better with sourcetree.

frankitox December 3, 2018

Still valid! Thank you so much! I was getting crazy! 

Martin Karachorov December 5, 2018

Thanks for the solution 
not so fancy box accept my pass :D

DE JONCKHEERE Vincent December 11, 2018

Thanks a lot !!! 

A week of research for this bug...

Deleting the password file of attlasian does the work !

Imar Toledo December 11, 2018

I do not know what to expect to fix this bug, thank you very much!

cjdennis December 18, 2018

If you have multiple accounts set up, it's not necessary to delete the whole passwd file.

  1. Make a copy of the passwd file just in case something goes wrong
  2. Edit the original file
    • You'll see a pair of lines for each set of login credentials. The first line is the username such as The line immediately under it is the encrypted password.
  3. Delete both lines for only the account you're having trouble with
  4. Save the file
  5. Sourcetree will prompt you for the password the next time you try to use that account, and as long as you enter it correctly, it will work and be saved
Levin Purba December 19, 2018

Almost the end of 2018 and this problem still persist. Deleting the passwd file was the only way to get around.

Till O'Rrly February 4, 2019

It's 2019 already, but still not all heroes wear capes.

AtronSeige March 5, 2019

Thank you! After 3 hours of struggling, I can finally START the introduction on bitbucket.

piercop March 24, 2019

Delete of password file worked for me. THANKS

Richard Peller May 21, 2019

After hours of searching..... This finally worked!!!!

This is a flaw, and should be fixed!. Come on!

scott-garner August 20, 2019

also after hours and hours of searching lol.. cmon guys..

Vlad November 6, 2019

It helps, thank you!

dot2globe February 11, 2020

Thanks for this answer. This helped me as well.

Thomas_Hertz_Orre April 6, 2020

Ha thanks, lost 30 min of my life there.

Geoffrey Falade May 6, 2020

This was a killer... Glad to see I'm not the only one :)

Bartłomiej Jeżewski November 24, 2020

2020, it's still working. Thanks! :)

fluxdigital April 29, 2021

Same here, 2021 and still an issue. I'd tried removing my accounts in sourcetree in the options menu and re-authing with the pat token and still no joy. I did this though as cjdennis mentioned instead (so I didn't loose passwords set for my other accounts):

cjdennis Dec 18, 2018

If you have multiple accounts set up, it's not necessary to delete the whole passwd file.

  1. Make a copy of the passwd file just in case something goes wrong
  2. Edit the original file
    • You'll see a pair of lines for each set of login credentials. The first line is the username such as The line immediately under it is the encrypted password.
  3. Delete both lines for only the account you're having trouble with
  4. Save the file
  5. Sourcetree will prompt you for the password the next time you try to use that account, and as long as you enter it correctly, it will work and be saved
Fiaz Mohammed Raffi May 27, 2021

Despite all saved account under Tools > Options > Authentication, this password file is not getting deleted. Only after manual deletion is when SourceTree prompted for login and things worked fine then

Thanks for this DAY SAVER TIP !!!

David John Brown November 8, 2021

And here I am - a git newbie four years on and still tripping over this. Wasted time and got severely demoralised when stuck at such a basic point with such a simple solution (simple when you know how!).

alluziion March 3, 2022

2022 running v3.3.8 and I'm still routinely having to use this fix. Poor effort by Atlassian. Bitbucket's UX isn't great as it is but furthermore it's riddled with bugs. Thanks for the tip.

Andreas Adam March 9, 2022

Wow - that helped!

Genesis Tabuena March 15, 2022

Worked like a charm! Thanks!

Andrew March 16, 2022

Very good. Thanks. I quit using SourceTree for yet another git GUI because of this problem...then hit the same problem there and realised it wasn't a SourceTree thing.

Back to SourceTree now.

Igor S September 13, 2023

Thank you! Same today 13.09.2023. on Sourcetree version 3.4.14 .

Command: git -c diff.mnemonicprefix=false -c core.quotepath=false --no-optional-locks ls-remote 'https://*******'


Error: fatal: Authentication failed for 'https://*******'

Issue was solved for me as described upper with:
going into path C:\Users\USERNAME\AppData\Local\Atlassian\SourceTree and removing the passwd file.

Starting again source tree, going to clone, and prompted me for password.

Before I had authentication failure, even in tools -> options -> authentication, user was OK authenticated. 

This was making confusion, like why was authentication failure, if user is successfully authenticated in settings now we know that there is additional file with authentication parameters.
Thank you. 

7 votes
Mandar Godse May 22, 2019

Somebody at Atlassian needs to write a blog with clear steps to resolve this issue, this continues to be an issue for many people. I had originally reported my problem in 2017 and we are in 2019 and people still seem to be struggling with basic functionality such as login.

I run into these errors every time my password is changed. Recently I had to uninstall and reinstall the software to get authenticated. Is this really a solution ? I hope somebody at atlassian takes this seriously and write a clear documentation about this issue. When done please post the link to this issue.

5 votes
Deleted user November 2, 2018

Go to Tools -> Options in SourceTree and then go to the Authentication tab on the Options popup. Delete all of the stored passwords. Try again, you should have another opportunity to enter authentication credentials. I'm using 3.0.8 and that worked for me.

Vincent Simonin December 11, 2018

That did the job for me, thanks.

Narendra Kekane January 24, 2019

Great it's work for me as well. My Source tree version was 3.0.12

Megan Moore April 22, 2019

This worked for me.  I had just updated my DI2E (Bitbucket) password, and even though I tried updating the password with the edit button in SourceTree, that didn't work.  Removing all the passwords worked.  I am using 3.0.17.

DEEPA June 24, 2019

Thank you.

This worked for me.

5 votes
euan brown December 12, 2017

If you are using sourcetree with bitbucket, I had to go in and change the Username to an email address in the file location below. I believe bitbucket swapped the log in from using usernames to email addresses but source tree wouldn't take it on it's normal login pop up screen. 


Eric Wolfe December 13, 2017

Thanks for menting this, though I had to switch the Username back to our network user from the email address.  

3 votes
Advait Deshpande February 22, 2018

I am putting all the steps I tried in the sequence and finally one thing worked. The solutions are suggested by other Stash/Sourcetree Users.

Solution A,  Didn't work. Might work for others. Good Luck!

  1. Make sure SourceTree is closed
  2. Make sure the files are backed up in the following folders before removing the files
  3. Remove files "bookmarks.xml", "opentabs.xml", "userhosts" in C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Local\Atlassian\SourceTree\
  4. Remove file in C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Local\Atlassian\SourceTree.exe<random_string>\<version_number>\user.config
  5. Open SourceTree again to test if it worked or not.

Solution B.  Didn't work. Might work for others. Good Luck!

Navigating to C:\Users\USERNAME\AppData\Local\Atlassian\SourceTree and removing the passwd file.


Solution C. Worked. Might be due to above steps performed above.

Sourcetree > Tools > Authentication > Deleted my Stash account > Added it again.

I hope the above post helps!

Ales Svoboda September 6, 2018

Thanks for summarization. Solution A worked for me.

Anton December 7, 2018

Solution B works perfectly

Like Eswari likes this
Amol B Pawar August 29, 2019

B & C option works together

Pedro Henriques December 21, 2021

B worked for me, thanks

2 votes
gmmaduro November 25, 2017





Alan Rasmussen January 31, 2018

That was easy.  Worked for me with Window 7.  Thanks.

Like aamir likes this
Chris Schiebel October 8, 2018

this was the only thing that worked for me on a mac, thank you!

1 vote
Linus Bårström November 21, 2019

For anyone still having this issue, you can go in Repository>Refresh Remote Repository. This seem to re-enable the authentication form .

0 votes
Martin Kužela October 31, 2023


Removing the passwd file.

For 3 years I had to put username and password into URL as an workaround before finding this answer!!!

0 votes
samsunoh22 May 17, 2023

The "fatal: Authentication failed" error in SourceTree typically occurs when there is an issue with the stored credentials or authentication settings.

samsunoh22 May 17, 2023

You can do the following things 

  • Update SourceTree
  • Clear Stored Credentials
  • Check Git Configurations

Open a Git terminal from SourceTree and verify your Git configurations by running the following commands

git config --global
git config --global
git config -l

Take small steps and try these things, make sure to backup any local changes or repositories.  

0 votes
Hercules January 28, 2022

So here we are in 2022, and these problem are still present!

Driving me NUTS.

I suddenly had authentication problems while contacting a remote git repository from Sourcetree, possible initiated by a password change on Windows.

Contacting over a web interface and from Visual Studio did WORK.
So I was sure of my credentials.

But trying all sorts things within Sourcetree did NOT change a damn thing.

  • Editing the credentials. Resulting in a bunch of saved passwords with different names. Why are there 2 right away with a single repository anyway?
  • Removing all of them. After which they SEEMED to be copied from the ones checked in Visual Studio. Yet still no success.
  • I was thinking of reinstalling an old version of Sourcetree, assuming some automatic update had messed things up. But I did not have other installation files.

Finally I found this post which saved my day, after hours of frustration.

I renamed the file C:\Users\USER\AppData\Local\Atlassian\SourceTree\passwd.

Then I asked my credentials and it all suddenly worked again, creating a new passwd file.

Come on Atlassian!

0 votes
binla March 30, 2021

Awesome!! it's work fined for me. 

0 votes
Alan Wasem November 26, 2018
On my Mac for the past 3 or 4 weeks I have had to reset my .ssh key once or twice a week. The way I do this is by searching for a folder in finder (shift + command + g) ~/.ssh/ and delete the bitbucket files .pub and all others. Then in sourcree accounts it reverts to another .ssh key I have in the folder. Hold option to change the button (where copy to clipboard usually is) to show generate new bit bucket key, with option held click that new button. It will ask for a pass phrase which can be whatever and will never ask for it again and then sometimes brings up another window where you’ll have to type your atlassian password. Once source tree has generated a new key the save option is still greyed out. You have to click the drop down menu for ssh or https and then either toggle it from https or just click ssh again and you’ll see the save button enable. At this point you can copy the new ssh key and add a new key on the bitbucket settings page. I hope this helps someone it’s crazy frustrating.
imampriyanto May 18, 2019

Yes, it absolutely helped me

0 votes
chaowangplaytech November 10, 2018

I delete password file and it works, soure tree is terrible

0 votes
daniel_foster August 10, 2018

Nothing is working for me. This is so frustrating, I have lost days messing about with this and two of my team are also having the same issue. Its not like I have an urgent build for 100,000 users that I need to get out the door or anything. I think its time to take my business elsewhere

Alan Wasem October 30, 2018


0 votes
omaracrystal August 9, 2018

I solved the issue by looking up Keychain Access with spotlight then deleted the Application password for that particular git url. I then opened the repository through SourceTree and it prompted me for a new password. The Keychain Access was then updated and worked after that

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