You may never need to clone (download) a copy of a repository at all. As we’ve seen in this book, you can use the GitHub web interface to view the state of a project, edit content, collaborate with your team, and set up and configure a repository. However, sometimes it’s necessary to clone a repository. In this chapter we’ll look at why you might want to clone a repo and how you would do so using GitHub Desktop. If you’re running Linux, though there are web interfaces out there, you’ll probably be better off just installing Git directly and learning the command-line interface for working with Git repositories—but that’s outside of the scope of this book.
There are a number of reasons why you might decide to clone a repository. Some of the most common ones include the following: