GIT(7)                                                                  GIT(7)

       git - the stupid content tracker

          git [--version] [--exec-path[=GIT_EXEC_PATH]] [-p|--paginate]
              [--bare] [--git-dir=GIT_DIR] [--help] COMMAND [ARGS]

       Git is a fast, scalable, distributed revision control system with an
       unusually rich command set that provides both high-level operations and
       full access to internals.

       See this [1]tutorial to get started, then see [2]Everyday Git for a
       useful minimum set of commands, and "man git-commandname" for
       documentation of each command. CVS users may also want to read [3]CVS

       The COMMAND is either a name of a Git command (see below) or an alias
       as defined in the configuration file (see git-repo-config(1)).

          Prints the git suite version that the git program came from.

          Prints the synopsis and a list of the most commonly used commands.
          If a git command is named this option will bring up the man-page for
          that command. If the option --all or -a is given then all available
          commands are printed.

          Path to wherever your core git programs are installed. This can also
          be controlled by setting the GIT_EXEC_PATH environment variable. If
          no path is given git will print the current setting and then exit.

          Pipe all output into less (or if set, $PAGER).

          Set the path to the repository. This can also be controlled by
          setting the GIT_DIR environment variable.

          Same as --git-dir=pwd.

       See the references above to get started using git. The following is
       probably more detail than necessary for a first-time user.

       The Discussion section below and the [4]Core tutorial both provide
       introductions to the underlying git architecture.

       See also the [5]howto documents for some useful examples.

       We divide git into high level ("porcelain") commands and low level
       ("plumbing") commands.

       We separate the porcelain commands into the main commands and some
       ancillary user utilities.

   Main porcelain commands
          Add paths to the index.

          Apply patches from a mailbox, but cooler.

          Apply patches from a mailbox, original version by Linus.

          Creates an archive of files from a named tree.

          Find the change that introduced a bug by binary search.

          Create and Show branches.

          Checkout and switch to a branch.

          Cherry-pick the effect of an existing commit.

          Remove untracked files from the working tree.

          Clones a repository into a new directory.

          Record changes to the repository.

          Show changes between commits, commit and working tree, etc.

          Download from a remote repository via various protocols.

          Prepare patches for e-mail submission.

          Print lines matching a pattern.

          The git repository browser.

          Shows commit logs.

          Shows references in a remote or local repository.

          Grand unified merge driver.

          Move or rename a file, a directory, or a symlink.

          Pack heads and tags for efficient repository access.

          Fetch from and merge with a remote repository or a local branch.

          Update remote refs along with associated objects.

          Rebase local commits to the updated upstream head.

          Pack unpacked objects in a repository.

          Reuse recorded resolution of conflicted merges.

          Reset current HEAD to the specified state.

          Merge two commits.

          Revert an existing commit.

          Remove files from the working tree and from the index.

          Summarizes git log output.

          Show one commit log and its diff.

          Show branches and their commits.

          Shows the working tree status.

          Check the GPG signature of tag.

          Shows commit logs and differences they introduce.

   Ancillary Commands

          Apply one patch extracted from an e-mail.

          Import an arch repository into git.

          Converts old-style git repository.

          Salvage your data out of another SCM people love to hate.

          Export a single commit to a CVS checkout.

          A CVS server emulator for git.

          Recover lost refs that luckily have not yet been pruned.

          The standard helper program to use with git-merge-index.

          Prunes all unreachable objects from the object database.

          Applies a quilt patchset onto the current branch.

          Hardlink common objects in local repositories.

          Bidirectional operation between a single Subversion branch and git.

          Import a SVN repository into git.

          Common git shell script setup code.

          Read and modify symbolic refs.

          An example script to create a tag object signed with GPG.

          Update the object name stored in a ref safely.

          Annotate file lines with commit info.

          Find out where each line in a file came from.

          Make sure ref name is well formed.

          Find commits not merged upstream.

          Count unpacked number of objects and their disk consumption.

          A really simple server for git repositories.

          Produce a merge commit message.

          Extract commit ID from an archive created using git-tar-tree.

          Dump a mailbox from stdin into an imap folder.

          Instantly browse your working repository in gitweb.

          Extracts patch and authorship information from a single e-mail
          message, optionally transliterating the commit message into utf-8.

          A stupid program to split UNIX mbox format mailbox into individual
          pieces of e-mail.

          Show three-way merge without touching index.

          Compute unique ID for a patch.

          Routines to help parsing $GIT_DIR/remotes/ files.


          Pick out and massage parameters.

          A helper for git-status and git-commit.

          Send patch e-mails out of "format-patch --mbox" output.

          Read and modify symbolic refs.

          Filter out empty lines.

       Although git includes its own porcelain layer, its low-level commands
       are sufficient to support development of alternative porcelains.
       Developers of such porcelains might start by reading about
       git-update-index(1) and git-read-tree(1).

       We divide the low-level commands into commands that manipulate objects
       (in the repository, index, and working tree), commands that interrogate
       and compare objects, and commands that move objects and references
       between repositories.

   Manipulation commands
          Reads a "diff -up1" or git generated patch file and applies it to
          the working tree.

          Copy files from the index to the working tree.

          Creates a new commit object.

          Computes the object ID from a file.

          Build pack idx file for an existing packed archive.

          Creates an empty git object database, or reinitialize an existing

          Runs a merge for files needing merging.

          Creates a tag object.

          Build a tree-object from ls-tree formatted text.

          Creates a packed archive of objects.

          Remove extra objects that are already in pack files.

          Reads tree information into the index.

          Get and set options in .git/config.

          Unpacks objects out of a packed archive.

          Registers files in the working tree to the index.

          Creates a tree from the index.

   Interrogation commands
          Provide content or type/size information for repository objects.

          Show the most recent tag that is reachable from a commit.

          Compares content and mode of blobs between the index and repository.

          Compares files in the working tree and the index.

          Compares two "merge stages" in the index.

          Compares the content and mode of blobs found via two tree objects.

          Output information on each ref.

          Verifies the connectivity and validity of the objects in the

          Information about files in the index and the working tree.

          Displays a tree object in human readable form.

          Finds as good common ancestors as possible for a merge.

          Find symbolic names for given revs.

          Find redundant pack files.

          Lists commit objects in reverse chronological order.

          Displays contents of a pack idx file.

          List references in a local repository.

          Creates a tar archive of the files in the named tree object.

          Creates a temporary file with a blob's contents.

          Displays a git logical variable.

          Validates packed git archive files.
       In general, the interrogate commands do not touch the files in the
       working tree.

   Synching repositories
          Updates from a remote repository (engine for ssh and local

          Downloads a remote git repository via HTTP by walking commit chain.

          Duplicates another git repository on a local system by walking
          commit chain.

          Lists references on a remote repository using upload-pack protocol
          (engine for ssh and local transport).

          Invoked by git-send-pack to receive what is pushed to it.

          Pushes to a remote repository, intelligently.

          Push missing objects using HTTP/DAV.

          Restricted shell for GIT-only SSH access.

          Pulls from a remote repository over ssh connection by walking commit

          Helper "server-side" program used by git-ssh-fetch.

          Updates auxiliary information on a dumb server to help clients
          discover references and packs on it.

          Invoked by git-archive to send a generated archive.

          Invoked by git-fetch-pack to push what are asked for.

       Starting from 0.99.9 (actually mid 0.99.8.GIT), .git/config file is
       used to hold per-repository configuration options. It is a simple text
       file modeled after .ini format familiar to some people. Here is an

          # A '#' or ';' character indicates a comment.

          ; core variables
                  ; Don't trust file modes
                  filemode = false

          ; user identity
                  name = "Junio C Hamano"
                  email = ""
       Various commands read from the configuration file and adjust their
       operation accordingly.

          Indicates the object name for any type of object.

          Indicates a blob object name.

          Indicates a tree object name.

          Indicates a commit object name.

          Indicates a tree, commit or tag object name. A command that takes a
          <tree-ish> argument ultimately wants to operate on a <tree> object
          but automatically dereferences <commit> and <tag> objects that point
          at a <tree>.

          Indicates that an object type is required. Currently one of: blob,
          tree, commit, or tag.

          Indicates a filename - almost always relative to the root of the
          tree structure GIT_INDEX_FILE describes.

       Any git command accepting any <object> can also use the following
       symbolic notation:

          indicates the head of the current branch (i.e. the contents of

          a valid tag name (i.e. the contents of $GIT_DIR/refs/tags/<tag>).

          a valid head name (i.e. the contents of $GIT_DIR/refs/heads/<head>).
       For a more complete list of ways to spell object names, see "SPECIFYING
       REVISIONS" section in git-rev-parse(1).

       Please see [6]repository layout document.

       Read [7]hooks for more details about each hook.

       Higher level SCMs may provide and manage additional information in the

       Please see [8]glossary document.

       Various git commands use the following environment variables:

   The git Repository
       These environment variables apply to all core git commands. Nb: it is
       worth noting that they may be used/overridden by SCMS sitting above git
       so take care if using Cogito etc.

          This environment allows the specification of an alternate index
          file. If not specified, the default of $GIT_DIR/index is used.

          If the object storage directory is specified via this environment
          variable then the sha1 directories are created underneath -
          otherwise the default $GIT_DIR/objects directory is used.

          Due to the immutable nature of git objects, old objects can be
          archived into shared, read-only directories. This variable specifies
          a ":" separated list of git object directories which can be used to
          search for git objects. New objects will not be written to these

          If the GIT_DIR environment variable is set then it specifies a path
          to use instead of the default .git for the base of the repository.

   git Commits
          see git-commit-tree(1)

   git Diffs
          see the "generating patches" section in : git-diff-index(1);
          git-diff-files(1); git-diff-tree(1)

          This environment variable overrides $PAGER.

          If this variable is set to "1", "2" or "true" (comparison is case
          insensitive), git will print trace: messages on stderr telling about
          alias expansion, built-in command execution and external command
          execution. If this variable is set to an integer value greater than
          1 and lower than 10 (strictly) then git will interpret this value as
          an open file descriptor and will try to write the trace messages
          into this file descriptor. Alternatively, if this variable is set to
          an absolute path (starting with a / character), git will interpret
          this as a file path and will try to write the trace messages into

       "git" can mean anything, depending on your mood.

       ·  random three-letter combination that is pronounceable, and not
          actually used by any common UNIX command. The fact that it is a
          mispronunciation of "get" may or may not be relevant.

       ·  stupid. contemptible and despicable. simple. Take your pick from the
          dictionary of slang.

       ·  "global information tracker": you're in a good mood, and it actually
          works for you. Angels sing, and a light suddenly fills the room.

       ·  "goddamn idiotic truckload of sh*t": when it breaks

          This is a stupid (but extremely fast) directory content manager. It
          doesn't do a whole lot, but what it does do is track directory
          contents efficiently.

          There are two object abstractions: the "object database", and the
          "current directory cache" aka "index".

   The Object Database
       The object database is literally just a content-addressable collection
       of objects. All objects are named by their content, which is
       approximated by the SHA1 hash of the object itself. Objects may refer
       to other objects (by referencing their SHA1 hash), and so you can build
       up a hierarchy of objects.

       All objects have a statically determined "type" aka "tag", which is
       determined at object creation time, and which identifies the format of
       the object (i.e. how it is used, and how it can refer to other
       objects). There are currently four different object types: "blob",
       "tree", "commit" and "tag".

       A "blob" object cannot refer to any other object, and is, like the type
       implies, a pure storage object containing some user data. It is used to
       actually store the file data, i.e. a blob object is associated with
       some particular version of some file.

       A "tree" object is an object that ties one or more "blob" objects into
       a directory structure. In addition, a tree object can refer to other
       tree objects, thus creating a directory hierarchy.

       A "commit" object ties such directory hierarchies together into a DAG
       of revisions - each "commit" is associated with exactly one tree (the
       directory hierarchy at the time of the commit). In addition, a "commit"
       refers to one or more "parent" commit objects that describe the history
       of how we arrived at that directory hierarchy.

       As a special case, a commit object with no parents is called the "root"
       object, and is the point of an initial project commit. Each project
       must have at least one root, and while you can tie several different
       root objects together into one project by creating a commit object
       which has two or more separate roots as its ultimate parents, that's
       probably just going to confuse people. So aim for the notion of "one
       root object per project", even if git itself does not enforce that.

       A "tag" object symbolically identifies and can be used to sign other
       objects. It contains the identifier and type of another object, a
       symbolic name (of course!) and, optionally, a signature.

       Regardless of object type, all objects share the following
       characteristics: they are all deflated with zlib, and have a header
       that not only specifies their type, but also provides size information
       about the data in the object. It's worth noting that the SHA1 hash that
       is used to name the object is the hash of the original data plus this
       header, so sha1sum file does not match the object name for file.
       (Historical note: in the dawn of the age of git the hash was the sha1
       of the compressed object.)

       As a result, the general consistency of an object can always be tested
       independently of the contents or the type of the object: all objects
       can be validated by verifying that (a) their hashes match the content
       of the file and (b) the object successfully inflates to a stream of
       bytes that forms a sequence of <ascii type without space> + <space> +
       <ascii decimal size> + <byte\0> + <binary object data>.

       The structured objects can further have their structure and
       connectivity to other objects verified. This is generally done with the
       git-fsck-objects program, which generates a full dependency graph of
       all objects, and verifies their internal consistency (in addition to
       just verifying their superficial consistency through the hash).

       The object types in some more detail:

   Blob Object
       A "blob" object is nothing but a binary blob of data, and doesn't refer
       to anything else. There is no signature or any other verification of
       the data, so while the object is consistent (it is indexed by its sha1
       hash, so the data itself is certainly correct), it has absolutely no
       other attributes. No name associations, no permissions. It is purely a
       blob of data (i.e. normally "file contents").

       In particular, since the blob is entirely defined by its data, if two
       files in a directory tree (or in multiple different versions of the
       repository) have the same contents, they will share the same blob
       object. The object is totally independent of its location in the
       directory tree, and renaming a file does not change the object that
       file is associated with in any way.

       A blob is typically created when git-update-index(1) is run, and its
       data can be accessed by git-cat-file(1).

   Tree Object
       The next hierarchical object type is the "tree" object. A tree object
       is a list of mode/name/blob data, sorted by name. Alternatively, the
       mode data may specify a directory mode, in which case instead of naming
       a blob, that name is associated with another TREE object.

       Like the "blob" object, a tree object is uniquely determined by the set
       contents, and so two separate but identical trees will always share the
       exact same object. This is true at all levels, i.e. it's true for a
       "leaf" tree (which does not refer to any other trees, only blobs) as
       well as for a whole subdirectory.

       For that reason a "tree" object is just a pure data abstraction: it has
       no history, no signatures, no verification of validity, except that
       since the contents are again protected by the hash itself, we can trust
       that the tree is immutable and its contents never change.

       So you can trust the contents of a tree to be valid, the same way you
       can trust the contents of a blob, but you don't know where those
       contents came from.

       Side note on trees: since a "tree" object is a sorted list of
       "filename+content", you can create a diff between two trees without
       actually having to unpack two trees. Just ignore all common parts, and
       your diff will look right. In other words, you can effectively (and
       efficiently) tell the difference between any two random trees by O(n)
       where "n" is the size of the difference, rather than the size of the

       Side note 2 on trees: since the name of a "blob" depends entirely and
       exclusively on its contents (i.e. there are no names or permissions
       involved), you can see trivial renames or permission changes by
       noticing that the blob stayed the same. However, renames with data
       changes need a smarter "diff" implementation.

       A tree is created with git-write-tree(1) and its data can be accessed
       by git-ls-tree(1). Two trees can be compared with git-diff-tree(1).

   Commit Object
       The "commit" object is an object that introduces the notion of history
       into the picture. In contrast to the other objects, it doesn't just
       describe the physical state of a tree, it describes how we got there,
       and why.

       A "commit" is defined by the tree-object that it results in, the parent
       commits (zero, one or more) that led up to that point, and a comment on
       what happened. Again, a commit is not trusted per se: the contents are
       well-defined and "safe" due to the cryptographically strong signatures
       at all levels, but there is no reason to believe that the tree is
       "good" or that the merge information makes sense. The parents do not
       have to actually have any relationship with the result, for example.

       Note on commits: unlike real SCM's, commits do not contain rename
       information or file mode change information. All of that is implicit in
       the trees involved (the result tree, and the result trees of the
       parents), and describing that makes no sense in this idiotic file

       A commit is created with git-commit-tree(1) and its data can be
       accessed by git-cat-file(1).

       An aside on the notion of "trust". Trust is really outside the scope of
       "git", but it's worth noting a few things. First off, since everything
       is hashed with SHA1, you can trust that an object is intact and has not
       been messed with by external sources. So the name of an object uniquely
       identifies a known state - just not a state that you may want to trust.

       Furthermore, since the SHA1 signature of a commit refers to the SHA1
       signatures of the tree it is associated with and the signatures of the
       parent, a single named commit specifies uniquely a whole set of
       history, with full contents. You can't later fake any step of the way
       once you have the name of a commit.

       So to introduce some real trust in the system, the only thing you need
       to do is to digitally sign just one special note, which includes the
       name of a top-level commit. Your digital signature shows others that
       you trust that commit, and the immutability of the history of commits
       tells others that they can trust the whole history.

       In other words, you can easily validate a whole archive by just sending
       out a single email that tells the people the name (SHA1 hash) of the
       top commit, and digitally sign that email using something like GPG/PGP.

       To assist in this, git also provides the tag object...

   Tag Object
       Git provides the "tag" object to simplify creating, managing and
       exchanging symbolic and signed tokens. The "tag" object at its simplest
       simply symbolically identifies another object by containing the sha1,
       type and symbolic name.

       However it can optionally contain additional signature information
       (which git doesn't care about as long as there's less than 8k of it).
       This can then be verified externally to git.

       Note that despite the tag features, "git" itself only handles content
       integrity; the trust framework (and signature provision and
       verification) has to come from outside.

       A tag is created with git-mktag(1), its data can be accessed by
       git-cat-file(1), and the signature can be verified by

       The index is a simple binary file, which contains an efficient
       representation of a virtual directory content at some random time. It
       does so by a simple array that associates a set of names, dates,
       permissions and content (aka "blob") objects together. The cache is
       always kept ordered by name, and names are unique (with a few very
       specific rules) at any point in time, but the cache has no long-term
       meaning, and can be partially updated at any time.

       In particular, the index certainly does not need to be consistent with
       the current directory contents (in fact, most operations will depend on
       different ways to make the index not be consistent with the directory
       hierarchy), but it has three very important attributes:

       (a) it can re-generate the full state it caches (not just the directory
       structure: it contains pointers to the "blob" objects so that it can
       regenerate the data too)

       As a special case, there is a clear and unambiguous one-way mapping
       from a current directory cache to a "tree object", which can be
       efficiently created from just the current directory cache without
       actually looking at any other data. So a directory cache at any one
       time uniquely specifies one and only one "tree" object (but has
       additional data to make it easy to match up that tree object with what
       has happened in the directory)

       (b) it has efficient methods for finding inconsistencies between that
       cached state ("tree object waiting to be instantiated") and the current

       (c) it can additionally efficiently represent information about merge
       conflicts between different tree objects, allowing each pathname to be
       associated with sufficient information about the trees involved that
       you can create a three-way merge between them.

       Those are the three ONLY things that the directory cache does. It's a
       cache, and the normal operation is to re-generate it completely from a
       known tree object, or update/compare it with a live tree that is being
       developed. If you blow the directory cache away entirely, you generally
       haven't lost any information as long as you have the name of the tree
       that it described.

       At the same time, the index is at the same time also the staging area
       for creating new trees, and creating a new tree always involves a
       controlled modification of the index file. In particular, the index
       file can have the representation of an intermediate tree that has not
       yet been instantiated. So the index can be thought of as a write-back
       cache, which can contain dirty information that has not yet been
       written back to the backing store.

       Generally, all "git" operations work on the index file. Some operations
       work purely on the index file (showing the current state of the index),
       but most operations move data to and from the index file. Either from
       the database or from the working directory. Thus there are four main

   1) working directory -> index
       You update the index with information from the working directory with
       the git-update-index(1) command. You generally update the index
       information by just specifying the filename you want to update, like

          git-update-index filename
       but to avoid common mistakes with filename globbing etc, the command
       will not normally add totally new entries or remove old entries, i.e.
       it will normally just update existing cache entries.

       To tell git that yes, you really do realize that certain files no
       longer exist, or that new files should be added, you should use the
       --remove and --add flags respectively.

       NOTE! A --remove flag does not mean that subsequent filenames will
       necessarily be removed: if the files still exist in your directory
       structure, the index will be updated with their new status, not
       removed. The only thing --remove means is that update-cache will be
       considering a removed file to be a valid thing, and if the file really
       does not exist any more, it will update the index accordingly.

       As a special case, you can also do git-update-index --refresh, which
       will refresh the "stat" information of each index to match the current
       stat information. It will not update the object status itself, and it
       will only update the fields that are used to quickly test whether an
       object still matches its old backing store object.

   2) index -> object database
       You write your current index file to a "tree" object with the program

       that doesn't come with any options - it will just write out the current
       index into the set of tree objects that describe that state, and it
       will return the name of the resulting top-level tree. You can use that
       tree to re-generate the index at any time by going in the other

   3) object database -> index
       You read a "tree" file from the object database, and use that to
       populate (and overwrite - don't do this if your index contains any
       unsaved state that you might want to restore later!) your current
       index. Normal operation is just

          git-read-tree <sha1 of tree>
       and your index file will now be equivalent to the tree that you saved
       earlier. However, that is only your index file: your working directory
       contents have not been modified.

   4) index -> working directory
       You update your working directory from the index by "checking out"
       files. This is not a very common operation, since normally you'd just
       keep your files updated, and rather than write to your working
       directory, you'd tell the index files about the changes in your working
       directory (i.e. git-update-index).

       However, if you decide to jump to a new version, or check out somebody
       else's version, or just restore a previous tree, you'd populate your
       index file with read-tree, and then you need to check out the result

          git-checkout-index filename
       or, if you want to check out all of the index, use -a.

       NOTE! git-checkout-index normally refuses to overwrite old files, so if
       you have an old version of the tree already checked out, you will need
       to use the "-f" flag (before the "-a" flag or the filename) to force
       the checkout.

       Finally, there are a few odds and ends which are not purely moving from
       one representation to the other:

   5) Tying it all together
       To commit a tree you have instantiated with "git-write-tree", you'd
       create a "commit" object that refers to that tree and the history
       behind it - most notably the "parent" commits that preceded it in

       Normally a "commit" has one parent: the previous state of the tree
       before a certain change was made. However, sometimes it can have two or
       more parent commits, in which case we call it a "merge", due to the
       fact that such a commit brings together ("merges") two or more previous
       states represented by other commits.

       In other words, while a "tree" represents a particular directory state
       of a working directory, a "commit" represents that state in "time", and
       explains how we got there.

       You create a commit object by giving it the tree that describes the
       state at the time of the commit, and a list of parents:

          git-commit-tree <tree> -p <parent> [-p <parent2> ..]
       and then giving the reason for the commit on stdin (either through
       redirection from a pipe or file, or by just typing it at the tty).

       git-commit-tree will return the name of the object that represents that
       commit, and you should save it away for later use. Normally, you'd
       commit a new HEAD state, and while git doesn't care where you save the
       note about that state, in practice we tend to just write the result to
       the file pointed at by .git/HEAD, so that we can always see what the
       last committed state was.

       Here is an ASCII art by Jon Loeliger that illustrates how various
       pieces fit together.

                                commit obj
                                 |    |
                                 |    |
                                 V    V
                              | Object DB |
                              |  Backing  |
                              |   Store   |
                     write-tree  |     |
                       tree obj  |     |
                                 |     |  read-tree
                                 |     |  tree obj
                              |   Index   |
                              |  "cache"  |
                   update-index  ^
                       blob obj  |     |
                                 |     |
              checkout-index -u  |     |  checkout-index
                       stat      |     |  blob obj
                              |  Working  |
                              | Directory |

   6) Examining the data
       You can examine the data represented in the object database and the
       index with various helper tools. For every object, you can use
       git-cat-file(1) to examine details about the object:

          git-cat-file -t <objectname>
       shows the type of the object, and once you have the type (which is
       usually implicit in where you find the object), you can use

          git-cat-file blob|tree|commit|tag <objectname>
       to show its contents. NOTE! Trees have binary content, and as a result
       there is a special helper for showing that content, called git-ls-tree,
       which turns the binary content into a more easily readable form.

       It's especially instructive to look at "commit" objects, since those
       tend to be small and fairly self-explanatory. In particular, if you
       follow the convention of having the top commit name in .git/HEAD, you
       can do

          git-cat-file commit HEAD
       to see what the top commit was.

   7) Merging multiple trees
       Git helps you do a three-way merge, which you can expand to n-way by
       repeating the merge procedure arbitrary times until you finally
       "commit" the state. The normal situation is that you'd only do one
       three-way merge (two parents), and commit it, but if you like to, you
       can do multiple parents in one go.

       To do a three-way merge, you need the two sets of "commit" objects that
       you want to merge, use those to find the closest common parent (a third
       "commit" object), and then use those commit objects to find the state
       of the directory ("tree" object) at these points.

       To get the "base" for the merge, you first look up the common parent of
       two commits with

          git-merge-base <commit1> <commit2>
       which will return you the commit they are both based on. You should now
       look up the "tree" objects of those commits, which you can easily do
       with (for example)

          git-cat-file commit <commitname> | head -1
       since the tree object information is always the first line in a commit

       Once you know the three trees you are going to merge (the one
       "original" tree, aka the common case, and the two "result" trees, aka
       the branches you want to merge), you do a "merge" read into the index.
       This will complain if it has to throw away your old index contents, so
       you should make sure that you've committed those - in fact you would
       normally always do a merge against your last commit (which should thus
       match what you have in your current index anyway).

       To do the merge, do

          git-read-tree -m -u <origtree> <yourtree> <targettree>
       which will do all trivial merge operations for you directly in the
       index file, and you can just write the result out with git-write-tree.

       Historical note. We did not have -u facility when this section was
       first written, so we used to warn that the merge is done in the index
       file, not in your working tree, and your working tree will not match
       your index after this step. This is no longer true. The above command,
       thanks to -u option, updates your working tree with the merge results
       for paths that have been trivially merged.

   8) Merging multiple trees, continued
       Sadly, many merges aren't trivial. If there are files that have been
       added.moved or removed, or if both branches have modified the same
       file, you will be left with an index tree that contains "merge entries"
       in it. Such an index tree can NOT be written out to a tree object, and
       you will have to resolve any such merge clashes using other tools
       before you can write out the result.

       You can examine such index state with git-ls-files --unmerged command.
       An example:

          $ git-read-tree -m $orig HEAD $target
          $ git-ls-files --unmerged
          100644 263414f423d0e4d70dae8fe53fa34614ff3e2860 1       hello.c
          100644 06fa6a24256dc7e560efa5687fa84b51f0263c3a 2       hello.c
          100644 cc44c73eb783565da5831b4d820c962954019b69 3       hello.c
       Each line of the git-ls-files --unmerged output begins with the blob
       mode bits, blob SHA1, stage number, and the filename. The stage number
       is git's way to say which tree it came from: stage 1 corresponds to
       $orig tree, stage 2 HEAD tree, and stage3 $target tree.

       Earlier we said that trivial merges are done inside git-read-tree -m.
       For example, if the file did not change from $orig to HEAD nor $target,
       or if the file changed from $orig to HEAD and $orig to $target the same
       way, obviously the final outcome is what is in HEAD. What the above
       example shows is that file hello.c was changed from $orig to HEAD and
       $orig to $target in a different way. You could resolve this by running
       your favorite 3-way merge program, e.g. diff3 or merge, on the blob
       objects from these three stages yourself, like this:

          $ git-cat-file blob 263414f... >hello.c~1
          $ git-cat-file blob 06fa6a2... >hello.c~2
          $ git-cat-file blob cc44c73... >hello.c~3
          $ merge hello.c~2 hello.c~1 hello.c~3
       This would leave the merge result in hello.c~2 file, along with
       conflict markers if there are conflicts. After verifying the merge
       result makes sense, you can tell git what the final merge result for
       this file is by:

          mv -f hello.c~2 hello.c
          git-update-index hello.c
       When a path is in unmerged state, running git-update-index for that
       path tells git to mark the path resolved.

       The above is the description of a git merge at the lowest level, to
       help you understand what conceptually happens under the hood. In
       practice, nobody, not even git itself, uses three git-cat-file for
       this. There is git-merge-index program that extracts the stages to
       temporary files and calls a "merge" script on it:

          git-merge-index git-merge-one-file hello.c
       and that is what higher level git resolve is implemented with.

       ·  git's founding father is Linus Torvalds <>.

       ·  The current git nurse is Junio C Hamano <>.

       ·  The git potty was written by Andres Ericsson <>.

       ·  General upbringing is handled by the git-list <>.

       The documentation for git suite was started by David Greaves
       <>, and later enhanced greatly by the contributors on
       the git-list <>.

       Part of the git(7) suite

       1. tutorial

       2. Everyday Git

       3. CVS migration

       4. Core tutorial

       5. howto

       6. repository layout

       7. hooks

       8. glossary

                                  01/26/2010                            GIT(7)