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Git Cheatsheet (survival level)

Here is a set of some of the most common things you’ll need to do in your day-to-day workflow with Git.

Pro Tip 1: you can get man pages for any git command by inserting a hyphen. As in: “man git-fetch” or “man git-merge”

Pro Tip 2: install the cheat gem for a really long cheat sheet available in your terminal.

What’s going on?

  • What branch am I on? Which files are modified, which are staged, which are untracked, etc?

    git status

Fetch, Pull, and Push

  • Get all new changes, and remote branch refs

    git fetch

  • Do a git fetch and (if possible) a merge on the current branch

    git pull

  • Push commits to the origin/master (like an SVN commit):

    git push origin master

  • Push commits on a non-master branch:

    git push origin your_branch_name


  • See a list of local branches

    git branch

  • Switch to an existing branch

    git checkout existing_branch_name

  • Create a new branch and switch to it:

    git checkout -b new_branch_name

Merging and Stashing

  • Merge my working branch into current branch:

    git merge working_branch_name

  • Temporarily clear my stage so I can switch to another branch (“stashing”):

    git stash

  • Get my stashed stuff back, leaving it in the list of stashes:

    git stash apply

  • Get my stashed stuff back, removing it from the list:

    git stash pop

History, Conflicts, and Fixing Mistakes

  • See the log of commits:

    git log

  • See what changes were made in a given commit:

    git show COMMIT_HASH

  • See more detailed log information:

    git whatchanged

  • Get rid of all the changes I’ve made since last commit:

    git reset --hard

  • Get rid of the changes for just one file:

    git checkout FILENAME

  • Make HEAD point to the state of the codebase as of 2 commits ago:

    git checkout HEAD^^

  • Fix a conflict (w/ system’s default graphical diff tool):

    git mergetool

  • Revert a commit (be careful with merges!):

    git revert <commit hash>

  • Revert a commit from a merge:

    git revert -m<number of commits back in the merge to revert> <hash of merge commit>

(e.g. git revert -m1 4f76f3bbb83ffe4de74a849ad9f68707e3568e16 will revert the first commit back in the merge performed at 4f76f3bbb83ffe4de74a849ad9f68707e3568e16)

Git in Bash

When using Git, it’s very handy (read: pretty much mandatory) to have an ambient cue in your shell telling you what branch you’re currently on. Use this function in your .profile/.bashrc/.bash_profile to enable you to place your Git branch in your prompt:

function parse_git_branch {
  git branch --no-color 2> /dev/null | sed -e '/^[^*]/d' -e 's/* \(.*\)/(\1)/'