In this short article, I’ll demonstrate the typical workflow for using a Git topic branch. If you’ve never heard of a topic branch, here’s a description from the excellent book, Pro Git:
“A topic branch is a short-lived branch that you create and use for a single particular feature or related work.
This is something you’ve likely never done with a VCS before because it’s generally too expensive to create and merge branches. But in Git it’s common to create, work on, merge, and delete branches several times a day.”
The basic Git topic branch workflow pattern looks like this:
create a new branch (our 'topic branch')
$ git branch bug1945
switch to the new branch
$ git checkout bug1945
do your work on the branch ...
commit your changes
$ git commit -a -m 'fixed bug 1945'
merge the changes back to the master
$ git checkout master
$ get merge bug1945
delete your topic branch
$ git branch -d bug1945
create another topic branch ...
That’s all there is to the basic Git topic branch workflow/pattern. Here’s a quick review:
- Create a new topic branch to work on your next feature
- Make your changes to the code
- Merge the changes back to the master
- Delete your branch
Related Git branch commands
Here’s a short list of Git commands related to the concept of topic branches:
create a branch and check it out in one step
$ git checkout -b bug1945
list your current branches
$ git branch
a little more information about the current branches
$ git branch -v
use the gui merge tool to see your merges
$ git mergetool
Git topic branch workflow: Summary
In summary, I hope this short tutorial on the concept of the Git topic branch workflow has been helpful.
Reporting live from Boulder, Colorado, this is Alvin Alexander.