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Git helpers - Simplify your git workflow

Gyandeep Singh
Associate lead Software Engineer (@cerner) Web, JavaScript, NodeJs, automation, being human, Dad, communication s key 😎 #StriveForGreatness
Originally published at gyandeeps.com ・4 min read

This was originally posted here

Being a git lover, I got tired of typing same commands over and over again. This motivated me to build some alias for my git workflow I use every day. Most of the alias was inherited from Nicholas C. Zakas's gist. I took that a step further by creating more alias which I use every time I contribute to open source projects like Eslint.

Commands

Actual code for all the commands is here

Work on an issue

When you plan to work on an issue on an open source project, you will want to create a new branch on your project and then start work on it. For that you have to go through couple of steps. To stream line that process now on top of your project you can just run the command:

ws 34
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This command will update the master branch with the updates from the remote and then create a new branch on it with name issue34.

Remove a branch after work is done

Once you are done with your work on the branch. Then you can simply run the below command to delete the branch from local and remote git.

wd 34
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Update your branch (all changes commited) with master

let’s say after working on your branch, you want to update your branch with latest content from the master. This is important in scenarios where you want to rebase your branch with latest content from master branch.

update
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Update your branch (uncommited changes) with master

let’s say after working on your branch, you want to update your branch with latest content from the master. But at this time you have not commited your changes. Using updateD, it will stash your changes then update your branch from master and then pick the changes from stash and apply it back on the current branch.

updateD
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Squash your commits

I always prefer to keep my changes history clean by squashing my commits. Once you are working on a branch and you want to squash your commits, simple run the following command to rebase. You can pass in a parameter of how many commits you want to include in your rebase from the HEAD. By default it will run rebase on last 2 commits.

rebase 4 # This will rebase on last 4 commits, default is 2
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Push your changes to remote

After you have finished your work, you want to push your changes to remote. Here mostly you will be doing a regular push but if you have done some rebases on your branch then your only option is to force push. We use --force-with-lease flag for force ppush just to be little more safe.

Regular push:

push # This will push your branch changes but will not push on master
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Force push:

fpush # This will push your branch changes but will not push on master
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Both commands will not allow you to push it to master because it considered a good practice to always branch off your changes and then merge it to master using a PR. This is completely my view.

Pull changes from origin

Running this command will pull thhe changes from upstream and merge them into thhe current branch. It uses --rebase --prune flags.

pull
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Update fork

Quick way to update your fork from the upstream repo. It will go to the master branch, get thhe upstream master, merge that upstream master into local master and then push thhe master to origin master. Its a complete cycle.

uf
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It expects you to setup upstream before running this command.

Quick commit

Quick way to commit your changes by supplying the commit message. Itt will add the currently changed files using the -a flag.

c "<message>"
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Log commits

Quick and easy way to view your commit log in oneline. Its formatted in a way where you can see the commit message, date and author along with some other info.

log
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Git status

Get the current status of the branch.

s
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Setup

To use all these command, follow the steps below to setup:

  1. Go to your user directory, for windows user it will be C:\Users\<your user>.
  2. Create a .bashrc file, if you do not have that file.
  3. Add/append the content from the below gist to that file.
  4. Open bash window. If already open then close it and then reopen bash window.
  5. Run alias command and you should see the list of all the alias defined.

Note: Feel free to change the function based on your need.

Gist for all the above commands

Click here to see the gist

I hope this helps people to streamline their git workflows. Please share your suggestions.

Discussion (15)

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xavierartot profile image
Xavier Artot

with ZSH you have already set up alias for Git, and I installed example wiht mine:
plugins=(git bower osx colored-man-pages colorize brew npm)
here the alias set up
github.com/robbyrussell/oh-my-zsh/...

But I have Zplug to manage more plugin and on is very cool here:

zplug "plugins/git", from:oh-my-zsh

If you typing the same cmd, with zsh I just use the autocompletion?

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gyandeeps profile image
Gyandeep Singh Author

I guess it make sense to use ZSH but I am a windows user and I don't want to install more stuff. That's why this works for me.

Again, important part is the functions and how you call them (using bash, zsh, etc) is very personal to the user using it. They can be used anywhere. Even the alias names can be changed based on the user preference.

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xavierartot profile image
Xavier Artot • Edited

the important it's the consistency and stays DRY (don't repeat your self).
And the productivity is important too.
I can start to work slowly because Windows or other software, but my boss doesn't go to understand the purpose?

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lt0mm profile image
Tom

Maybe you would be even faster on windows who knows :)

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xavierartot profile image
Xavier Artot

I tried and I'm more productive on Mac osx, Windows with virus and co, I didn't go anywhere then Linux can be a good fit for me too, I'm working on Debian and Ubuntu sometimes.
It's really similar to mac osx.

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lt0mm profile image
Tom • Edited

Yeah by my opinion mac is more user-friendly for developers, but what I noticed for myself is that I really enjoy more working on it, and my mood can increase productivity not tools, you can find similar tools for windows, and something can be even better, I have friends who really don't like mac os, I'm sure that theirs productivity is much better on windows

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xavierartot profile image
Xavier Artot

I'm sure you're friends are very marginal.

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lt0mm profile image
Tom

I think someone has to say it to you, there are people with different opinions even with different tastes. You should know that it isn't called marginality

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sapirgolan profile image
Sapir Golan

Hi,

Did you manage to add the "git helpers"?
I'm also using oh-my-zsh on my mac with git plugin enabled.

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xavierartot profile image
Xavier Artot • Edited

to see the alias associate to git type:
alias | grep git

but again I'm using a plugin to help me to use the alias and force to remember it.
It's very helpfull when you have like me 390 alias:


alias | wc
390 1346 12969

git helpers is not a command in Git?

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sapirgolan profile image
Sapir Golan

I'm not using zplug, however i do use alias | grep to find the alias I'm looking for.

I have managed to create a plugin for zsh that is based on git helpers. I'm not sure how to share this plugin

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lt0mm profile image
Tom

nice, I can suggest only one of my favorite things to use

git merge-base master HEAD

as a default commit for rebasing, it's nearest common ancestors between current branch and master

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gyandeeps profile image
Gyandeep Singh Author

I have never heard of that... an you explain that a little bit as to when do you use and how it works...

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lt0mm profile image
Tom • Edited

yeah I found it somewhere as it usual happens, I use it for 2 aliases


rebase-branch => !git rebase -i `git merge-base master HEAD`
reset-branch => !git reset `git merge-base master HEAD`

first do interactive rebase of feature branch from first commit after master, second just reset all commits on feature branch leaves you with unstaged changes of all commits (you're loosing all commit messages of cause), so I thought that in your case maybe it would be good instead of default 2 commits back interactive rebase do rebase from the beginning of feature branch

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plutov profile image
Alex Pliutau

Nice, I recently came up with this tool, which simplifies opening repo in browser from terminal.

github.com/plutov/o