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Git Guide

Git is the most commonly used distributed version control system for anyone working with a code repository. Git allows the user to create a local copy of the remote repository and sync changes onto the server.

Git is available as a set of CLI tools on different platforms to perform operations such as initialize, add, commit, pull and push on the repository and more advanced operations such as branch, merge and rebase. Git works with GitHub, GitLab and Gerrit workflows.


  1. Install Git.

    For Debian based systems:

    sudo apt-get install git -y

    For rpm based systems:

    sudo dnf install git -y

    For MacOS systems, install homebrew and install Git

    brew install git

Setup Git config

To change the author name or email used to sign off a commit use the command.

git config --local "Your Name"
git config --local

To change the Git commit editor to vim run the command.

git config --global core.editor "vim"

To always sign a commit by default.

git config --global gpg.gpgsign true

To set the default gpg2 program:

git config --global gpg.program $(which gpg2)

Sample .gitconfig

Sample $HOME/.gitconfig with other useful settings.

  name = <User Name>
  email =
  editor = vim
  pager = less -R
  helper = cache --timeout=3600
  username = askb
  ui = auto
  enabled = true
  gpgsign = true
  program = /usr/bin/gpg2
  sign = if-asked
  submoduleSummary = false
  co = checkout

Clone a repository

To clone a Git repository.

git clone ssh://<user_name><repository>.git


Use the --recursive-submodule option if repository has Git submodules.

Auto Generate Change IDs

To generate change-id’s automatically.

      git clone ssh://
      scp -p -P 29418 docs/.git/hooks/

Pull Down New Source

To pull updates from the remote repository and rebase changes on your local branch.

git pull --rebase

Repository status

To check the status of the repository.

git status

Create a branch

To create a local branch from master.

git branch -b <branch-name> origin/master

Switching between branches

To switch between a branch and the master within your repository.

git checkout <branch-name>
git checkout master

Add a file

To stage a file modified in your local repository.

git add <path/to/file>

Commit a change

To commit a change to your local repository.

git add <path/to/file>
git commit --signoff --gpg-sign


The –signoff (or -s) adds a “Signed-off-by” line in the commit footer. The –gpg-sign (or -S) signs the commit with the GPG key.

Amend a change

To amend a change in your local repository.

git add <path/to/file>
git commit --amend


The –signoff (or -s) adds a “Signed-off-by” line in the commit footer. The –gpg-sign (or -S) signs the commit with the GPG key.

Discard a change

To discard changes introduced in the last commit.

git reset --hard HEAD~1

Cherry-pick a commit

To copy a commit from between branches use the git cherry-pick command.

git checkout <from-branch>
git log                        # note <commit-id> from the output
git checkout <to-branch>
git cherry-pick <commit-id>    # use the <commit-id> noted earlier

Stash changes

To stash your work temporarily and move between branches.

git stash                      # stash the modified files temporarily
git checkout <new-branch>
git stash pop                  # pop the modified changes

Log of recent changes

To view a log of the recent changes.

git log

To revert change partially in a commit

To revert changes to one or more files in a commit.

git log    # note the <commit-id>
git show <commit-id> -- <file> | git apply -R # Revert the <file> in <commit-id>
git add <file>
git commit --signoff --gpg-sign --amend