Git is version control software. You can think of git to be the equivalent of saving a document in a program like Word that keeps track of every version of your work, and allows you to share those versions with other people and collaborate in a way that won’t have you overwriting each other’s changes.

There are many alternatives to git, but it has become a standard for developers in large part because of, a service for hosting code using git.

The best way to start learning git (and GitHub) is to visit You should also try githug, a game for learning git.

Project website:


download / install:

If you are using a Mac, you can install using homebrew:

brew install git

For more information about homebrew, check out the project’s homepage:

On Debian/Ubuntu, install using apt-get:

apt-get install git

For Windows machines, download git from the git website:




Here are some basics of using git:

Create a git repository:

cd name-of-folder
git init

Add files:

git add name-of-file

// or add all files in directory:

git add .

When you add files to a git repository they are “staged” and ready to be committed.

Remove files:

git rm name-of-file

// force removal of files:

git rm -rf name-of-file-or-directory

Commit files and add a message using the -m option:

git commit -m 'a message describing the commit'

Create a branch:

git branch name-of-branch

Checkout a branch:

git checkout name-of-branch

Shortcut for creating a new branch and checking it out:

git checkout -b name-of-branch

Merge a branch into the master branch:

git checkout master
git merge name-of-branch

Add a remote repository:

git remote add origin

List associated repositories:

git remote -v

Pull changes from a remote repository:

git pull origin master

Push changes to a remote repository

git push origin master

Checkout a remote branch:

git checkout -t origin/haml


Official documentation

The official git documentation has an API reference, a book about git, videos instructing on basic usage of git, and a page of links to useful resources.

This interactive tutorial is a great introduction to both git and GitHub. Highly recommended.

I often refer to for various tips and tricks for using git.

The help section of GitHub’s site has instructions for using, but it also has some great documentation for using git.

Guides about Git

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