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Git tips

Tips for Windows users

On Windows, use Git Bash (in Windows Explorer, right click and Git Bash Here) to run git commands.

If you try to create a .gitignore file using Windows Explorer, Windows will get angry with you. Instead, open Git Bash in your project directory and enter

touch .gitignore

If you are really, really want to use Windows Explorer, there are reports you can specify .gitignore. as the file name (with a trailing period) to fool Windows into accepting it. But who knows for how long. Whichever way you do it, be sure the file you create is called .gitignore (and not e.g., .gitignore.txt) and be sure you add .gitignore to the repository.

Note that touch .gitignore will work in other OSes that use the bash shell (i.e., most Linux and Mac systems).

Initial configuration

The first time you run git, it may get angry with you because you haven't configured your email and name. Just do what it says, or if you want to be proactive, open a command line interface and enter:

git config --global "Your Name"
git config --global ""

The –global option will add the information to your global git profile so all new projects will use that information. You don't have to set a global and, but things are a lot simpler if you do.

There are more settings you can configure documented here.


To make git ignore a specific file:


To make git ignore all files with a .exe extension:


To make git ignore all files in a directory called foo:


Comments begin with a #

# Ignore all files in directory foo

You can use as many entries as you need:

# Ignore specific files
# Ignore compiled file(s)
# Ignore all files in directory foo

Bash tips

To change directories in bash:

cd {path-to-directory-using-forward-slashes}

~ is a shortcut to your home (User) directory. So you could for example:

cd ~/Documents/Dev/MyProject

To navigate up one level:

cd ../

To list all the files (including hidden files) in a directory:

ls -la

To create a new file

touch {filename}
version_control/git_tips.txt · Last modified: 2016/04/21 03:46 by mithat