Git Aliases - What Are They And How To Use Them?
Being a developer, we work a lot with Git. We tend to write the same commands countless times in a day. Thus, repeating the same long Git commands over and over can become a tedious task.
As a result, in this article, you are going to see how to set up Git aliases for any Git command you want. The aliases are going to improve your experience significantly, and it is going to save you time as well.
What are Git Aliases
Git Aliases are shorter commands that map to longer commands. In simpler words, they act as a shortcut. For instance, instead of typing
git commit -m "message here" every time you want to commit some changes, you can use an alias such as
git cm "message".
At first glance, it might not seem like a significant improvement, but once you repeat the same command a dozen times, you can see the benefit. Also, it saves you a lot of time when you are pushing changes and use various commands.
Therefore, let us see how to set up the Git aliases.
How to setup aliases
To set up an alias for a command, you need to run a one-line configuration in the terminal. All the commands start with
git config --global alias., and you add the alias and Git command after the dot. For example, to create an alias for
git status, we can run the following command in the terminal
git config --global alias.st status.
The template for adding aliases is as follows
git config --global alias.[insertYourShortcut] [gitCommand]. Below, you can see the Git aliases I am using for guidance:
git config --global alias.c checkout git config --global alias.st status git config --global alias.cm 'checkout master' git config --global alias.b branch git config --global alias.c checkout git config --global alias.cmm 'commit -m' git config --global alias.p pull git config --global alias.cb 'checkout -b' git config --global alias.sc 'switch -c'
However, you can modify in any way you like it. Besides that, you can also add new, more complex commands.
How to run the commands
You run the commands the way you run any other Git command. For instance, if you want to checkout master, you run
git cm instead of
git checkout master.
I would suggest using descriptive aliases for your commands. Otherwise, you can get confused. For example, looking at
git.cm, you can understand easier what their purpose is. On the other side, using something like
git cm for
git rebase <base>, it can confuse you.
To easily display your git aliases run the following command in your terminal
git config --global alias.alias "! git config --get-regexp ^alias\. | sed -e s/^alias\.// -e s/\ /\ =\ /".
Now you can use
git alias to list all the aliases you have created.
In conclusion, you will appreciate the aliases after using them. They help you to save time, to make fewer mistakes, and they speed up the development.
If you have other aliases, you can reply in the comments. I am curious to see them!
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