Life of a Workspace

Gitpod makes creating fresh workspaces as easy as clicking a button on a GitHub page. Gitpod’s continuous dev environments encourages you to create fresh workspaces rather than restarting older ones. This ensures that you are starting from a clean slate with proper configuration.


Any running workspace will automatically stop after some time of inactivity. Normally, this timeout is 30 minutes but is extended to 60 minutes if you have the Unlimited plan. Furthermore, Unlimited users can manually boost the timeout of a workspace to 180 minutes. This comes in handy, e.g. in case you want to go out for a longer lunch or meeting and don’t like restarting your workspace when coming back.

The timeout will always be reset to the full 30 minutes (or other applicable timeout depending on your subscription) by any activity — mouse move or keystroke — in the IDE. If the IDE is still open but the corresponding workspace has stopped, a dialog will pop up that lets you start the workspace again. Alternatively, you can just reload the browser or go to your workspaces and restart the workspace.

For convenience, closing the browser window/tab containing the IDE reduces the timeout to 3 minutes.

Garbage Collection

Old, unused workspaces are automatically deleted. To prevent a workspace from being deleted, you can pin it in your list of workspaces. Pinned workspaces are kept forever. A message at the top of the workspaces list indicates after how many days unused and unpinned workspaces will get collected (the exact number of days may change in the future). Restarting a workspace resets the day counter for this particular workspace. Workspaces that are about to be deleted are shown with a corresponding status message in the workspaces list.

Changes are Saved

Gitpod backs up the state of the /workspace/ folder between workspace starts, so that you can revisit them later. Attention: Files in other locations will not be saved!