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Configure git

Overview

Your personal git configurations are saved in the .gitconfig file in your home directory. Here is an example .gitconfig file:

[user]
        name = Your Name
        email = you@yourdomain.example.com

[alias]
        ci = commit -a
        co = checkout
        st = status -a
        stat = status -a
        br = branch
        wdiff = diff --color-words

[core]
        editor = vim

[merge]
        summary = true

[apply]
        whitespace = fix

[core]
        autocrlf = input

You can edit this file directly or you can use the git config --global command:

git config --global user.name "Your Name"
git config --global user.email you@yourdomain.example.com
git config --global alias.ci "commit -a"
git config --global alias.co checkout
git config --global alias.st "status -a"
git config --global alias.stat "status -a"
git config --global alias.br branch
git config --global alias.wdiff "diff --color-words"
git config --global core.editor vim
git config --global merge.summary true

To set up on another computer, you can copy your ~/.gitconfig file, or run the commands above.

In detail

user.name and user.email

It is good practice to tell git who you are, for labeling any changes you make to the code. The simplest way to do this is from the command line:

git config --global user.name "Your Name"
git config --global user.email you@yourdomain.example.com

This will write the settings into your git configuration file, which should now contain a user section with your name and email:

[user]
      name = Your Name
      email = you@yourdomain.example.com

Of course you’ll need to replace Your Name and you@yourdomain.example.com with your actual name and email address.

Aliases

You might well benefit from some aliases to common commands.

For example, you might well want to be able to shorten git checkout to git co. Or you may want to alias git diff --color-words (which gives a nicely formatted output of the diff) to git wdiff

The following git config --global commands:

git config --global alias.ci "commit -a"
git config --global alias.co checkout
git config --global alias.st "status -a"
git config --global alias.stat "status -a"
git config --global alias.br branch
git config --global alias.wdiff "diff --color-words"

will create an alias section in your .gitconfig file with contents like this:

[alias]
        ci = commit -a
        co = checkout
        st = status -a
        stat = status -a
        br = branch
        wdiff = diff --color-words

Editor

You may also want to make sure that your editor of choice is used

git config --global core.editor vim

Merging

To enforce summaries when doing merges (~/.gitconfig file again):

[merge]
   log = true

Or from the command line:

git config --global merge.log true