GIT CHEAT SHEET – Important Git commands

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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 git 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

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 “[firstname lastname]”
set a name that is identifiable for credit when review version history

git config --global “[valid-email]”
set an email address that will be associated with each history marker

git config --global color.ui auto
set automatic command line coloring for Git for easy reviewing


Configuring user information, initializing and cloning repositories

git init
initialize an existing directory as a Git repository

git clone [url]
retrieve an entire repository from a hosted location via URL


Working with snapshots and the Git staging area

git status
show 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 diff
diff of what is changed but not staged

git diff --staged
diff of what is staged but not yet commited

git commit -m “[descriptive message]”
commit your staged content as a new commit snapshot


Isolating work in branches, changing context, and integrating changes

git branch
list your branches. a * will appear next to the currently active branch

git branch [branch-name]
create a new branch at the current commit

git checkout
switch to another branch and check it out into your working directory

git merge [branch]
merge the specified branch’s history into the current one

git log
show all commits in the current branch’s history


Examining logs, diffs and object information

git log
show the commit history for the currently active branch

git log branchB..branchA
show 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...branchA
show the diff of what is in branchA that is not in branchB

git show [SHA]
show any object in Git in human-readable format

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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 -M
show all commit logs with indication of any paths that moved


Preventing unintentional staging or committing of files

Save a file with desired paterns as .gitignore with either direct string matches or wildcard globs.

git config --global core.excludesfile [file]
system wide ignore patern 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 pull
fetch and merge any commits from the tracking remote branch


Rewriting branches, updating commits and clearing history

git rebase [branch]
apply any commits of current branch ahead of specified one

git reset --hard [commit]
clear staging area, rewrite working tree from specified commit


Temporarily store modified, tracked files in order to change branches

git stash
Save modified and staged changes

git stash list
list stack-order of stashed file changes

git stash pop
write working from top of stash stack

git stash drop
discard the changes from top of stash stack


Here is the GIT CHEAT SHEET – Important and commonly used Git commands. If you like it, then spread free knowledge among everyone. Help everyone to know and learn. See you in a later post. Happy coding.

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