topic branch

Git error: Your local changes to the following files would be overwritten by checkout

When you get the Git checkout error, “Your local changes to the following files would be overwritten by checkout,” one likely cause is that files in the master branch are indeed newer than the files in your feature branch.

But another possibility that I just learned about is that you did a git add, but forgot to do a git commit before trying to switch branches. My current wrong/accidental workflow looks like this:

The Git “topic branch” workflow (pattern)

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.