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Git Cheat Sheet

Git is the free and open source distributed version control system that’s responsible for everything GitHub related that happens locally on your computer. This cheat sheet features the most important and commonly used Git commands for easy reference.


With platform specific installers for Git, GitHub also provides the ease of staying up-to-date with the latest releases of the command line tool while providing a graphical user interface for day-to-day interaction, review, and repository synchronization.

GitHub for Windows


GitHub for Mac

https://mac.github.com For Linux and Solaris platforms, the latest release is available on the official Git web site.

Git for All Platforms



Configuring user information used across all local repositories

git config –global user.name “[firstname lastname]”set a name that is identifiable for credit when review version history
git config –global user.email “[valid-email]”set an email address that will be associated with each history marker
git config –global color.ui autoset automatic command line coloring for Git for easy reviewing
git config –system core.editor [editor]Set text editor used by commands for all users on the machine. [editor] arg should be the command that launches the desired editor (e.g., vi).
git config –global –editOpen the global configuration file in a text editor for manual editing.


Configuring user information, initializing and cloning repositories

git initinitialize an existing directory as a Git repository
git init [directory]create empty Git repo in specified directory.
git clone [url]retrieve an entire repository from a hosted location via URL


Working with snapshots and the Git staging area

git statusshow modified files in working directory, staged for your next commit
git add [file]add a file as it looks now to your next commit (stage)
git reset [file]unstage a file while retaining the changes in working directory
git diffdiff of what is changed but not staged
git diff HEADshow difference between working directory and last commit
git diff –cachedshow difference between staged changes and last commit
git diff –stageddiff of what is staged but not yet committed
git commit -m “[descriptive message]”commit your staged content as a new commit snapshot


Isolating work in branches, changing context, and integrating changes

git branchlist your branches. a * will appear next to the currently active branch
git branch [branch-name]create a new branch at the current commit
git checkoutswitch to another branch and check it out into your working directory
git checkout -b [branch]create and check out a new branch named [branch]. drop the -b flag to checkout an existing branch.
git merge [branch]merge the specified branch’s history into the current one
git logshow all commits in the current branch’s history


Examining logs, diffs and object information

git logshow the commit history for the currently active branch
git log -[limit]show limit number of commites by [limit]
git log –onelinecondense each commit to a single line
git log -pshow the full diff of each commit
git log –statinclude which files were altered and the relative number of lines that were added or deleted from each of them
git log –author=”[pattern]”search for commits by a particular author
git log –grep=”[pattern]”search for commits with a commit message that matches [pattern]
git log –graph –decorate–graph flag draws a text based graph of commits on left side of commit message. –decorate adds names of branches or tags of commits shown
git log branchB..branchAshow the commits on branchA that are not on branchB
git log –follow [file]show the commits that changed file, even across renames
git diff branchB…branchAshow the diff of what is in branchA that is not in branchB
git show [SHA]show any object in Git in human-readable format


Versioning file removes and path changes

git rm [file]delete the file from project and stage the removal for commit
git mv [existing-path] [new-path]change an existing file path and stage the move
git log –stat -Mshow all commit logs with indication of any paths that moved


Preventing unintentional staging or commiting of files

save a file with desired patterns as .gitignore with either direct string matches or wildcard globs.
git config –global core.excludesfile [file]system wide ignore pattern for all local repositories


Retrieving updates from another repository and updating local repos

git remote add [alias] [url]add a git URL as an alias
git fetch [alias]fetch down all the branches from that Git remote
git merge [alias]/[branch]merge a remote branch into your current branch to bring it up to date
git push [alias] [branch]Transmit local branch commits to the remote repository branch
git push [remote] –forceforces the git push even if it results in a non-fast-forward merge. do not use the –force flag unless you’re absolutely sure you know what you’re doing
git push [remote] –allpush all of your local branches to the specified remote
git push [remote] –tagstags aren’t automatically pushed when you push a branch or use the –all flag. the –tags flag sends all of your local tags to the remote repo
git pullfetch and merge any commits from the tracking remote branch
git pull –rebase [remote]fetch the remote’s copy of current branch and rebases it into the local copy. uses git rebase instead of merge to integrate the branches


Rewriting branches, updating commits and clearing history

git revert [commit]]create new commit that undoes all of the changes made in [commit], then apply it to the current branch.
git rebase [branch]apply any commits of current branch ahead of specified one
git rebase -i [branch]interactively rebase current branch onto [branch]. launches editor to enter commands for how each commit will be transferred to the new base
git resetreset staging area to match most recent commit, but leave the working directory unchanged
git reset –hardreset staging area and working directory to match most recent commit and overwrites all changes in the working directory
git reset [commit]move the current branch tip backward to [commit], reset the staging area to match, but leave the working directory alone
git reset –hard [commit]clear staging area, rewrite working tree from specified commit
git clean -nshows which files would be removed from working directory. use the -f flag in place of the -n flag to execute the clean.
git commit –amendreplace the last commit with the staged changes and last commit combined. use with nothing staged to edit the last commit’s message
git reflogshow a log of changes to the local repository’s HEAD. add –relative-date flag to show date info or –all to show all refs.


Temporarily store modified, tracked files in order to change branches

git stashSave modified and staged changes
git stash listlist stack-order of stashed file changes
git stash popwrite working from top of stash stack
git stash dropdiscard the changes from top of stash stack


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