Functionality in this post is maintained in this Github Repo. PRs welcome!

I’m an idiot. And git is hard. A lot of places use a rebase-based Git workflow, and I’ve made git less hard with a set of handy aliases. Put these in your ~/.gitconfig and turn git into an actually less painful command line tool to use.

  # *********************
  # Rebase workflow
    mainbranch = "!git remote show origin | sed -n '/HEAD branch/s/.*: //p'"
    synced = "!git pull origin $(git mainbranch) --rebase"
    update = "!git pull origin $(git rev-parse --abbrev-ref HEAD) --rebase"
    squash = "!git rebase -v -i $(git mainbranch)"
    publish = push origin HEAD --force-with-lease
    pub = publish 

Here’s documentation for these idiot-proof git aliases.

Publish your branch’s changes to the world

The publish (abbrev pub) command publishes your changes to your branch Github. If other changes have been posted by another user to Github, then changes will be rejected. You should update first to incoroporate their changes and resolve any conflicts.

git publish
git pub

Under the hood this is a force push with lease to your branch at origin.

Sync your branch with main / master from Github

The synced command will get your local branch up to date with your main branch (main or master) at origin (ie Github).

git synced

Under the hood, this fetches main or master from origin and performs a rebase, replaying your commits on top of the tip of main or master.

Update your branch with Github’s copy of your branch

If your local branch gets out of date with origin’s version of your branch, then do an update. This would happen if you’re collaborating on the branch with a colleague and need to get up to date.

git update

Under the hood, this fetches origin/your-branch and performs a rebase.

Squash commits

Prior to merging, you likely want to shrink your branch’s many noisy commits to one or two meaningful ones. That’s what squash command does, giving you a chance to rewrite the branch’s history.

git squash

Under the hood, this is an interactive rebase.

Other useful commands

  • git pr -> Open this PR at
  • git hub -> Open this repo at
  • git amend -> Alias for git commit --amend
  • git ammend -> How I always misspell ‘amend’, also alias for git commit --amend
  # ********************
  # My dumbass typos
    ammend = commit --amend 
    amend = commit --amend 

  # *********************
  # Github
  # From -
    pr = "!f() { \
       open \"$(git ls-remote --get-url $(git config --get branch.$(git rev-parse --abbrev-ref HEAD).remote) \
       | sed 's|\\(.*\\)$|\\1|' \
       | sed 's|\\.git$||'; \
       git config --get branch.$(git rev-parse --abbrev-ref HEAD).merge | cut -d '/' -f 3- \
       )?expand=1\"; \
  }; f"
    hub = "!f() { \
       open \"$(git ls-remote --get-url \
       | sed 's|\\(.*\\)$|\\1|' \
       | sed 's|\\.git$||'; \
       )\"; \
  }; f"

For simplicity, I use “Github” here to refer to the origin remote, but replace whatever your Github with whatever your origin is. The exception being git pr and git hub commands. Similarly I use main as the trunk/main/master. But both main and master are supported.

Doug Turnbull

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