Cheatsheet - Git

Commonly used git commands


  • initialize a git repo:
    1. cd to the directory where we want git to track Changes
    2. initialize the repo: git init
  • check the contents of a repository: git status
  • remove git from current directory: rm -rf .git
  • clone a repository: git clone repository_URL


  • add file/folder to staging area: git add file_name

  • remove a file that is not ready for a commit, a.k.a., undo add: git reset file_name

  • commit change: git commit -m "commit message"

  • list all the files being tracked: git ls-tree -r master --name-only

  • rename a file in git: git mv old_file_name new_file_name git commit -m 'rename file' git push origin master

  • check git history, visualize branches :

    • Viewing git log: git log
    • Exiting git log: press q (for quit)
    • Viewing git log in graph form git log --graph --abbrev-commit --pretty=oneline git log --oneline --graph

    where: --graph give visualization of branches, --oneline allows tighter and tidier presentation

    with --oneline:

    sh * | 7d7ee90 update |/ * 2d26671 update

    without --oneline:

    sh * | commit 7d7ee90df266f08201275427623d78d316e5b959 |/ Author: Xiaoyue<> | Date: Fri Mar 20 18:52:23 2020 -0700 | | update | * commit 2d26671d93cfad488e18804f071d409b9dfa17ff | Author: Xiaoyue <> | Date: Fri Mar 20 18:35:16 2020 -0700

  • compare the difference between two versions: git diff first_id second_id

  • compare the difference between working directory and staging area: git diff

  • compare the difference between staging aread and most recent commit: git diff --staged

  • compare the difference between a commit and its parent: git show commit_id

  • restore to a commit temporarily: git checkout commit_id


  • add a remote repository: git remote add origin repository_url

  • update/sync remote repository with local repo: git push origin master

  • check remote repository status: git remote

  • get more information on remote: git remote show origin

  • update/sync local repo with remote repo: git pull origin master

  • rename a remote repository:

    • rename remote repo on github,
    • update local repo's remote url: git remote set-url origin new-rul
  • check remote repo url: git config --get remote.origin.url

  • remove a remote repository: git remote -v git remote rm origin git remote -v

  • comprare the difference between remote and local: git fetch + git diff ...origin/master


  • create a branch: git branch branch_name

  • check which branch is being worked on: git branch

  • delete a branch: git branch -d branch_name

  • merge a branch: git merge name If confict, make changes, then: git add file_name(where conflicts occur) git commit

  • push a branch to the remote: git push (to) remote_name branch_name


  • check the git version: git --version

  • get colored Output: git config --global color.ui auto

  • colors:

    • green="[\033[0;32m]"
    • blue="[\033[0;34m]"
    • purple="[\033[0;35m]"
    • reset="[\033[0m]"
  • Change command prompt source ~/ export GIT_PS1_SHOWDIRTYSTATE=1 export PS1="$purple\u$green\$(__git_ps1)$blue \W $ $reset"

    • \u adds the name of the current user to the prompt
    • \$(__git_ps1) adds git-related stuff
    • \W adds the name of the current directory