git-branch - List, create, or delete branches


   git branch [--color[=<when>] | --no-color] [-r | -a]
           [--list] [-v [--abbrev=<length> | --no-abbrev]]
           [--column[=<options>] | --no-column]
           [(--merged | --no-merged | --contains) [<commit>]] [--sort=<key>]
           [--points-at <object>] [<pattern>...]
   git branch [--set-upstream | --track | --no-track] [-l] [-f] <branchname> [<start-point>]
   git branch (--set-upstream-to=<upstream> | -u <upstream>) [<branchname>]
   git branch --unset-upstream [<branchname>]
   git branch (-m | -M) [<oldbranch>] <newbranch>
   git branch (-d | -D) [-r] <branchname>...
   git branch --edit-description [<branchname>]


   If --list is given, or if there are no non-option arguments, existing
   branches are listed; the current branch will be highlighted with an
   asterisk. Option -r causes the remote-tracking branches to be listed,
   and option -a shows both local and remote branches. If a <pattern> is
   given, it is used as a shell wildcard to restrict the output to
   matching branches. If multiple patterns are given, a branch is shown if
   it matches any of the patterns. Note that when providing a <pattern>,
   you must use --list; otherwise the command is interpreted as branch

   With --contains, shows only the branches that contain the named commit
   (in other words, the branches whose tip commits are descendants of the
   named commit). With --merged, only branches merged into the named
   commit (i.e. the branches whose tip commits are reachable from the
   named commit) will be listed. With --no-merged only branches not merged
   into the named commit will be listed. If the <commit> argument is
   missing it defaults to HEAD (i.e. the tip of the current branch).

   The command's second form creates a new branch head named <branchname>
   which points to the current HEAD, or <start-point> if given.

   Note that this will create the new branch, but it will not switch the
   working tree to it; use "git checkout <newbranch>" to switch to the new

   When a local branch is started off a remote-tracking branch, Git sets
   up the branch (specifically the branch.<name>.remote and
   branch.<name>.merge configuration entries) so that git pull will
   appropriately merge from the remote-tracking branch. This behavior may
   be changed via the global branch.autoSetupMerge configuration flag.
   That setting can be overridden by using the --track and --no-track
   options, and changed later using git branch --set-upstream-to.

   With a -m or -M option, <oldbranch> will be renamed to <newbranch>. If
   <oldbranch> had a corresponding reflog, it is renamed to match
   <newbranch>, and a reflog entry is created to remember the branch
   renaming. If <newbranch> exists, -M must be used to force the rename to

   With a -d or -D option, <branchname> will be deleted. You may specify
   more than one branch for deletion. If the branch currently has a reflog
   then the reflog will also be deleted.

   Use -r together with -d to delete remote-tracking branches. Note, that
   it only makes sense to delete remote-tracking branches if they no
   longer exist in the remote repository or if git fetch was configured
   not to fetch them again. See also the prune subcommand of git-remote(1)
   for a way to clean up all obsolete remote-tracking branches.


   -d, --delete
       Delete a branch. The branch must be fully merged in its upstream
       branch, or in HEAD if no upstream was set with --track or

       Shortcut for --delete --force.

   -l, --create-reflog
       Create the branch's reflog. This activates recording of all changes
       made to the branch ref, enabling use of date based sha1 expressions
       such as "<branchname>@{yesterday}". Note that in non-bare
       repositories, reflogs are usually enabled by default by the
       core.logallrefupdates config option.

   -f, --force
       Reset <branchname> to <startpoint> if <branchname> exists already.
       Without -f git branch refuses to change an existing branch. In
       combination with -d (or --delete), allow deleting the branch
       irrespective of its merged status. In combination with -m (or
       --move), allow renaming the branch even if the new branch name
       already exists.

   -m, --move
       Move/rename a branch and the corresponding reflog.

       Shortcut for --move --force.

       Color branches to highlight current, local, and remote-tracking
       branches. The value must be always (the default), never, or auto.

       Turn off branch colors, even when the configuration file gives the
       default to color output. Same as --color=never.

   --column[=<options>], --no-column
       Display branch listing in columns. See configuration variable
       column.branch for option syntax.--column and --no-column without
       options are equivalent to always and never respectively.

       This option is only applicable in non-verbose mode.

   -r, --remotes
       List or delete (if used with -d) the remote-tracking branches.

   -a, --all
       List both remote-tracking branches and local branches.

       Activate the list mode.  git branch <pattern> would try to create a
       branch, use git branch --list <pattern> to list matching branches.

   -v, -vv, --verbose
       When in list mode, show sha1 and commit subject line for each head,
       along with relationship to upstream branch (if any). If given
       twice, print the name of the upstream branch, as well (see also git
       remote show <remote>).

   -q, --quiet
       Be more quiet when creating or deleting a branch, suppressing
       non-error messages.

       Alter the sha1's minimum display length in the output listing. The
       default value is 7 and can be overridden by the core.abbrev config

       Display the full sha1s in the output listing rather than
       abbreviating them.

   -t, --track
       When creating a new branch, set up branch.<name>.remote and
       branch.<name>.merge configuration entries to mark the start-point
       branch as "upstream" from the new branch. This configuration will
       tell git to show the relationship between the two branches in git
       status and git branch -v. Furthermore, it directs git pull without
       arguments to pull from the upstream when the new branch is checked

       This behavior is the default when the start point is a
       remote-tracking branch. Set the branch.autoSetupMerge configuration
       variable to false if you want git checkout and git branch to always
       behave as if --no-track were given. Set it to always if you want
       this behavior when the start-point is either a local or
       remote-tracking branch.

       Do not set up "upstream" configuration, even if the
       branch.autoSetupMerge configuration variable is true.

       If specified branch does not exist yet or if --force has been
       given, acts exactly like --track. Otherwise sets up configuration
       like --track would when creating the branch, except that where
       branch points to is not changed.

   -u <upstream>, --set-upstream-to=<upstream>
       Set up <branchname>'s tracking information so <upstream> is
       considered <branchname>'s upstream branch. If no <branchname> is
       specified, then it defaults to the current branch.

       Remove the upstream information for <branchname>. If no branch is
       specified it defaults to the current branch.

       Open an editor and edit the text to explain what the branch is for,
       to be used by various other commands (e.g.  format-patch,
       request-pull, and merge (if enabled)). Multi-line explanations may
       be used.

   --contains [<commit>]
       Only list branches which contain the specified commit (HEAD if not
       specified). Implies --list.

   --merged [<commit>]
       Only list branches whose tips are reachable from the specified
       commit (HEAD if not specified). Implies --list.

   --no-merged [<commit>]
       Only list branches whose tips are not reachable from the specified
       commit (HEAD if not specified). Implies --list.

       The name of the branch to create or delete. The new branch name
       must pass all checks defined by git-check-ref-format(1). Some of
       these checks may restrict the characters allowed in a branch name.

       The new branch head will point to this commit. It may be given as a
       branch name, a commit-id, or a tag. If this option is omitted, the
       current HEAD will be used instead.

       The name of an existing branch to rename.

       The new name for an existing branch. The same restrictions as for
       <branchname> apply.

       Sort based on the key given. Prefix - to sort in descending order
       of the value. You may use the --sort=<key> option multiple times,
       in which case the last key becomes the primary key. The keys
       supported are the same as those in git for-each-ref. Sort order
       defaults to sorting based on the full refname (including refs/...
       prefix). This lists detached HEAD (if present) first, then local
       branches and finally remote-tracking branches.

   --points-at <object>
       Only list branches of the given object.


   Start development from a known tag

           $ git clone git:// my2.6
           $ cd my2.6
           $ git branch my2.6.14 v2.6.14   (1)
           $ git checkout my2.6.14

       1. This step and the next one could be combined into a single step
       with "checkout -b my2.6.14 v2.6.14".

   Delete an unneeded branch

           $ git clone git:// my.git
           $ cd my.git
           $ git branch -d -r origin/todo origin/html origin/man   (1)
           $ git branch -D test                                    (2)

       1. Delete the remote-tracking branches "todo", "html" and "man".
       The next fetch or pull will create them again unless you configure
       them not to. See git-fetch(1).
       2. Delete the "test" branch even if the "master" branch (or
       whichever branch is currently checked out) does not have all
       commits from the test branch.


   If you are creating a branch that you want to checkout immediately, it
   is easier to use the git checkout command with its -b option to create
   a branch and check it out with a single command.

   The options --contains, --merged and --no-merged serve three related
   but different purposes:

   *   --contains <commit> is used to find all branches which will need
       special attention if <commit> were to be rebased or amended, since
       those branches contain the specified <commit>.

   *   --merged is used to find all branches which can be safely deleted,
       since those branches are fully contained by HEAD.

   *   --no-merged is used to find branches which are candidates for
       merging into HEAD, since those branches are not fully contained by


   git-check-ref-format(1), git-fetch(1), git-remote(1), "Understanding
   history: What is a branch?"[1] in the Git User's Manual.


   Part of the git(1) suite


    1. "Understanding history: What is a branch?"


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