Git v1.8.2-rc3

A release candidate Git v1.8.2-rc3 is now available for testing
at the usual places.

The release tarballs are found at:

and their SHA-1 checksums are:

3fe30d85cea78a388d61ba79fe3a106fca41cfbe  git-1.8.2.rc3.tar.gz
4b378cf6129fa4c9355436b93a698dde2ed4ce7a  git-htmldocs-1.8.2.rc3.tar.gz
b18a1f2e70920b5028f1179cc4b362ad78a6f34c  git-manpages-1.8.2.rc3.tar.gz

Also the following public repositories all have a copy of the v1.8.2-rc3
tag and the master branch that the tag points at:

url = git://
url =
url = git://
url = git://
url =

Git v1.8.2 Release Notes (draft)

Backward compatibility notes

In the next major release Git 2.0 (not this one), we will change the
behavior of the “git push” command.

When “git push [$there]” does not say what to push, we have used the
traditional “matching” semantics so far (all your branches were sent
to the remote as long as there already are branches of the same name
over there). We will use the “simple” semantics that pushes the
current branch to the branch with the same name, only when the current
branch is set to integrate with that remote branch. There is a user
preference configuration variable “push.default” to change this.

“git push $there tag v1.2.3” used to allow replacing a tag v1.2.3
that already exists in the repository $there, if the rewritten tag
you are pushing points at a commit that is a descendant of a commit
that the old tag v1.2.3 points at. This was found to be error prone
and starting with this release, any attempt to update an existing
ref under refs/tags/ hierarchy will fail, without “–force”.

When “git add -u” and “git add -A”, that does not specify what paths
to add on the command line, is run from inside a subdirectory, the
scope of the operation has always been limited to the subdirectory.
Many users found this counter-intuitive, given that “git commit -a”
and other commands operate on the entire tree regardless of where you
are. In this release, these commands give warning in such a case and
encourage the user to say “git add -u/-A .” instead when restricting
the scope to the current directory.

At Git 2.0 (not this one), we plan to change these commands without
pathspec to operate on the entire tree. Forming a habit to type “.”
when you mean to limit the command to the current working directory
will protect you against the planned future change, and that is the
whole point of the new message (there will be no configuration
variable to squelch this warning—it goes against the “habit forming”

Updates since v1.8.1

UI, Workflows & Features

  • Initial ports to QNX and z/OS UNIX System Services have started.

  • Output from the tests is coloured using “green is okay, yellow is
    questionable, red is bad and blue is informative” scheme.

  • Mention of “GIT/Git/git” in the documentation have been updated to
    be more uniform and consistent. The name of the system and the
    concept it embodies is “Git”; the command the users type is “git”.
    All-caps “GIT” was merely a way to imitate “Git” typeset in small
    caps in our ASCII text only documentation and to be avoided.

  • The completion script (in contrib/completion) used to let the
    default completer to suggest pathnames, which gave too many
    irrelevant choices (e.g. “git add” would not want to add an
    unmodified path). It learnt to use a more git-aware logic to
    enumerate only relevant ones.

  • In bare repositories, “git shortlog” and other commands now read
    mailmap files from the tip of the history, to help running these
    tools in server settings.

  • Color specifiers, e.g. “%C(blue)Hello%C(reset)”, used in the
    “–format=” option of “git log” and friends can be disabled when
    the output is not sent to a terminal by prefixing them with
    “auto,”, e.g. “%C(auto,blue)Hello%C(auto,reset)”.

  • Scripts can ask Git that wildcard patterns in pathspecs they give do
    not have any significance, i.e. take them as literal strings.

  • The patterns in .gitignore and .gitattributes files can have /,
    as a pattern that matches 0 or more levels of subdirectory.
    E.g. “foo/
    /bar” matches “bar” in “foo” itself or in a
    subdirectory of “foo”.

  • When giving arguments without “–” disambiguation, object names
    that come earlier on the command line must not be interpretable as
    pathspecs and pathspecs that come later on the command line must
    not be interpretable as object names. This disambiguation rule has
    been tweaked so that “:/” (no other string before or after) is
    always interpreted as a pathspec; “git cmd — :/” is no longer
    needed, you can just say “git cmd :/”.

  • Various “hint” lines Git gives when it asks the user to edit
    messages in the editor are commented out with by default. The
    core.commentchar configuration variable can be used to customize
    this to a different character.

  • “git add -u” and “git add -A” without pathspec issues warning to
    make users aware that they are only operating on paths inside the
    subdirectory they are in. Use “:/” (everything from the top) or
    “.” (everything from the $cwd) to disambiguate.

  • “git blame” (and “git diff”) learned the “–no-follow” option.

  • “git branch” now rejects some nonsense combinations of command line
    arguments (e.g. giving more than one branch name to rename) with
    more case-specific error messages.

  • “git check-ignore” command to help debugging .gitignore files has
    been added.

  • “git cherry-pick” can be used to replay a root commit to an unborn

  • “git commit” can be told to use –cleanup=whitespace by setting the
    configuration variable commit.cleanup to whitespace.

  • “git diff” and other Porcelain commands can be told to use a
    non-standard algorithm by setting diff.algorithm configuration

  • “git fetch –mirror” and fetch that uses other forms of refspec
    with wildcard used to attempt to update a symbolic ref that match
    the wildcard on the receiving end, which made little sense (the
    real ref that is pointed at by the symbolic ref would be updated
    anyway). Symbolic refs no longer are affected by such a fetch.

  • “git format-patch” now detects more cases in which a whole branch
    is being exported, and uses the description for the branch, when
    asked to write a cover letter for the series.

  • “git format-patch” learned “-v $count” option, and prepends a
    string “v$count-” to the names of its output files, and also
    automatically sets the subject prefix to “PATCH v$count”. This
    allows patches from rerolled series to be stored under different
    names and makes it easier to reuse cover letter messages.

  • “git log” and friends can be told with –use-mailmap option to
    rewrite the names and email addresses of people using the mailmap

  • “git log –cc –graph” now shows the combined diff output with the
    ancestry graph.

  • “git log –grep=<pattern>” honors i18n.logoutputencoding to look
    for the pattern after fixing the log message to the specified

  • “git mergetool” and “git difftool” learned to list the available
    tool backends in a more consistent manner.

  • “git mergetool” is aware of TortoiseGitMerge now and uses it over
    TortoiseMerge when available.

  • “git push” now requires “-f” to update a tag, even if it is a
    fast-forward, as tags are meant to be fixed points.

  • Error messages from “git push” when it stops to prevent remote refs
    from getting overwritten by mistake have been improved to explain
    various situations separately.

  • “git push” will stop without doing anything if the new “pre-push”
    hook exists and exits with a failure.

  • When “git rebase” fails to generate patches to be applied (e.g. due
    to oom), it failed to detect the failure and instead behaved as if
    there were nothing to do. A workaround to use a temporary file has
    been applied, but we probably would want to revisit this later, as
    it hurts the common case of not failing at all.

  • Input and preconditions to “git reset” has been loosened where
    appropriate. “git reset $fromtree Makefile” requires $fromtree to
    be any tree (it used to require it to be a commit), for example.
    “git reset” (without options or parameters) used to error out when
    you do not have any commits in your history, but it now gives you
    an empty index (to match non-existent commit you are not even on).

  • “git status” says what branch is being bisected or rebased when
    able, not just “bisecting” or “rebasing”.

  • “git submodule” started learning a new mode to integrate with the
    tip of the remote branch (as opposed to integrating with the commit
    recorded in the superproject’s gitlink).

  • “git upload-pack” which implements the service “ls-remote” and
    “fetch” talk to can be told to hide ref hierarchies the server
    side internally uses (and that clients have no business learning
    about) with transfer.hiderefs configuration.

Foreign Interface

  • “git fast-export” has been updated for its use in the context of
    the remote helper interface.

  • A new remote helper to interact with bzr has been added to contrib/.

  • “git p4” got various bugfixes around its branch handling. It is
    also made usable with Python 2.4/2.5. In addition, its various
    portability issues for Cygwin have been addressed.

  • The remote helper to interact with Hg in contrib/ has seen a few

Performance, Internal Implementation, etc.

  • “git fsck” has been taught to be pickier about entries in tree
    objects that should not be there, e.g. “.”, “.git”, and “..”.

  • Matching paths with common forms of pathspecs that contain wildcard
    characters has been optimized further.

  • We stopped paying attention to $GIT_CONFIG environment that points
    at a single configuration file from any command other than “git config”
    quite a while ago, but “git clone” internally set, exported, and
    then unexported the variable during its operation unnecessarily.

  • “git reset” internals has been reworked and should be faster in
    general. We tried to be careful not to break any behaviour but
    there could be corner cases, especially when running the command
    from a conflicted state, that we may have missed.

  • The implementation of “imap-send” has been updated to reuse xml
    quoting code from http-push codepath, and lost a lot of unused

  • There is a simple-minded checker for the test scripts in t/
    directory to catch most common mistakes (it is not enabled by

  • You can build with USE_WILDMATCH=YesPlease to use a replacement
    implementation of pattern matching logic used for pathname-like
    things, e.g. refnames and paths in the repository. This new
    implementation is not expected change the existing behaviour of Git
    in this release, except for “git for-each-ref” where you can now
    say “refs//master” and match with both refs/heads/master and
    refs/remotes/origin/master. We plan to use this new implementation
    in wider places (e.g. “git ls-files
    /Makefile may find Makefile
    at the top-level, and “git log */” may find commits that
    touch a shell script whose name begins with “t” at any level) in
    future versions of Git, but we are not there yet. By building with
    USE_WILDMATCH, using the resulting Git daily and reporting when you
    find breakages, you can help us get closer to that goal.

  • Some reimplementations of Git do not write all the stat info back
    to the index due to their implementation limitations (e.g. jgit).
    A configuration option can tell Git to ignore changes to most of
    the stat fields and only pay attention to mtime and size, which
    these implementations can reliably update. This can be used to
    avoid excessive revalidation of contents.

  • Some platforms ship with old version of expat where xmlparse.h
    needs to be included instead of expat.h; the build procedure has
    been taught about this.

  • “make clean” on platforms that cannot compute header dependencies
    on the fly did not work with implementations of “rm” that do not
    like an empty argument list.

Also contains minor documentation updates and code clean-ups.

Fixes since v1.8.1

Unless otherwise noted, all the fixes since v1.8.1 in the maintenance
track are contained in this release (see release notes to them for

  • An element on GIT_CEILING_DIRECTORIES list that does not name the
    real path to a directory (i.e. a symbolic link) could have caused
    the GIT_DIR discovery logic to escape the ceiling.

  • When attempting to read the XDG-style $HOME/.config/git/config and
    finding that $HOME/.config/git is a file, we gave a wrong error
    message, instead of treating the case as “a custom config file does
    not exist there” and moving on.

  • The behaviour visible to the end users was confusing, when they
    attempt to kill a process spawned in the editor that was in turn
    launched by Git with SIGINT (or SIGQUIT), as Git would catch that
    signal and die. We ignore these signals now.
    (merge 0398fc34 pf/editor-ignore-sigint later to maint).

  • A child process that was killed by a signal (e.g. SIGINT) was
    reported in an inconsistent way depending on how the process was
    spawned by us, with or without a shell in between.

  • After failing to create a temporary file using mkstemp(), failing
    pathname was not reported correctly on some platforms.

  • We used to stuff “user@” and then append what we read from
    /etc/mailname to come up with a default e-mail ident, but a bug
    lost the “user@” part.

  • The attribute mechanism didn’t allow limiting attributes to be
    applied to only a single directory itself with “path/” like the
    exclude mechanism does. The initial implementation of this that
    was merged to maint and was with a severe performance
    degradations and needs to merge a fix-up topic.

  • The smart HTTP clients forgot to verify the content-type that comes
    back from the server side to make sure that the request is being
    handled properly.

  • “git am” did not parse datestamp correctly from Hg generated patch,
    when it is run in a locale outside C (or en).

  • “git apply” misbehaved when fixing whitespace breakages by removing
    excess trailing blank lines.

  • “git apply –summary” has been taught to make sure the similarity
    value shown in its output is sensible, even when the input had a
    bogus value.

  • A tar archive created by “git archive” recorded a directory in a
    way that made NetBSD’s implementation of “tar” sometimes unhappy.

  • “git archive” did not record uncompressed size in the header when
    streaming a zip archive, which confused some implementations of unzip.

  • “git archive” did not parse configuration values in tar.* namespace
    (merge b3873c3 jk/config-parsing-cleanup later to maint).

  • Attempt to “branch –edit-description” an existing branch, while
    being on a detached HEAD, errored out.

  • “git clean” showed what it was going to do, but sometimes end up
    finding that it was not allowed to do so, which resulted in a
    confusing output (e.g. after saying that it will remove an
    untracked directory, it found an embedded git repository there
    which it is not allowed to remove). It now performs the actions
    and then reports the outcome more faithfully.

  • When “git clone –separate-git-dir=$over_there” is interrupted, it
    failed to remove the real location of the $GIT_DIR it created.
    This was most visible when interrupting a submodule update.

  • “git cvsimport” mishandled timestamps at DST boundary.

  • We used to have an arbitrary 32 limit for combined diff input,
    resulting in incorrect number of leading colons shown when showing
    the “–raw –cc” output.

  • “git fetch –depth” was broken in at least three ways. The
    resulting history was deeper than specified by one commit, it was
    unclear how to wipe the shallowness of the repository with the
    command, and documentation was misleading.
    (merge cfb70e1 nd/fetch-depth-is-broken later to maint).

  • “git log –all -p” that walked refs/notes/textconv/ ref can later
    try to use the textconv data incorrectly after it gets freed.

  • We forgot to close the file descriptor reading from “gpg” output,
    killing “git log –show-signature” on a long history.

  • The way “git svn” asked for password using SSH_ASKPASS and
    GIT_ASKPASS was not in line with the rest of the system.

  • The –graph code fell into infinite loop when asked to do what the
    code did not expect.

  • http transport was wrong to ask for the username when the
    authentication is done by certificate identity.

  • “git pack-refs” that ran in parallel to another process that
    created new refs had a nasty race.

  • Rebasing the history of superproject with change in the submodule
    has been broken since v1.7.12.

  • After “git add -N” and then writing a tree object out of the
    index, the cache-tree data structure got corrupted.

  • “git clone” used to allow –bare and –separate-git-dir=$there
    options at the same time, which was nonsensical.

  • “git rebase –preserve-merges” lost empty merges in recent versions
    of Git.

  • “git merge –no-edit” computed who were involved in the work done
    on the side branch, even though that information is to be discarded
    without getting seen in the editor.

  • “git merge” started calling prepare-commit-msg hook like “git
    commit” does some time ago, but forgot to pay attention to the exit
    status of the hook.

  • A failure to push due to non-ff while on an unborn branch
    dereferenced a NULL pointer when showing an error message.

  • When users spell “cc:” in lowercase in the fake “header” in the
    trailer part, “git send-email” failed to pick up the addresses from
    there. As e-mail headers field names are case insensitive, this
    script should follow suit and treat “cc:” and “Cc:” the same way.

  • Output from “git status –ignored” showed an unexpected interaction
    with “–untracked”.

  • “gitweb”, when sorting by age to show repositories with new
    activities first, used to sort repositories with absolutely
    nothing in it early, which was not very useful.

  • “gitweb”‘s code to sanitize control characters before passing it to
    “highlight” filter lost known-to-be-safe control characters by

  • “gitweb” pages served over HTTPS, when configured to show picon or
    gravatar, referred to these external resources to be fetched via
    HTTP, resulting in mixed contents warning in browsers.

  • When a line to be wrapped has a solid run of non space characters
    whose length exactly is the wrap width, “git shortlog -w” failed
    to add a newline after such a line.

  • Command line completion leaked an unnecessary error message while
    looking for possible matches with paths in <tree-ish>.

  • Command line completion for “tcsh” emitted an unwanted space
    after completing a single directory name.

  • Command line completion code was inadvertently made incompatible with
    older versions of bash by using a newer array notation.

  • “git push” was taught to refuse updating the branch that is
    currently checked out long time ago, but the user manual was left
    (merge 50995ed wk/man-deny-current-branch-is-default-these-days later to maint).

  • Some shells do not behave correctly when IFS is unset; work it
    around by explicitly setting it to the default value.

  • Some scripted programs written in Python did not get updated when
    PYTHON_PATH changed.
    (cherry-pick 96a4647fca54031974cd6ad1 later to maint).

  • When autoconf is used, any build on a different commit always ran
    “config.status –recheck” even when unnecessary.

  • A fix was added to the build procedure to work around buggy
    versions of ccache broke the auto-generation of dependencies, which
    unfortunately is still relevant because some people use ancient

  • The autoconf subsystem passed –mandir down to generated
    config.mak.autogen but forgot to do the same for –htmldir.
    (merge 55d9bf0 ct/autoconf-htmldir later to maint).

  • A change made on v1.8.1.x maintenance track had a nasty regression
    to break the build when autoconf is used.
    (merge 7f1b697 jn/less-reconfigure later to maint).

  • We have been carrying a translated and long-unmaintained copy of an
    old version of the tutorial; removed.

  • t0050 had tests expecting failures from a bug that was fixed some
    time ago.

  • t4014, t9502 and t0200 tests had various portability issues that
    broke on OpenBSD.

  • t9020 and t3600 tests had various portability issues.

  • t9200 runs “cvs init” on a directory that already exists, but a
    platform can configure this fail for the current user (e.g. you
    need to be in the cvsadmin group on NetBSD 6.0).

  • t9020 and t9810 had a few non-portable shell script construct.

  • Scripts to test bash completion was inherently flaky as it was
    affected by whatever random things the user may have on $PATH.

  • An element on GIT_CEILING_DIRECTORIES could be a “logical” pathname
    that uses a symbolic link to point at somewhere else (e.g. /home/me
    that points at /net/host/export/home/me, and the latter directory
    is automounted). Earlier when Git saw such a pathname e.g. /home/me
    on this environment variable, the “ceiling” mechanism did not take
    effect. With this release (the fix has also been merged to the
    v1.8.1.x maintenance series), elements on GIT_CEILING_DIRECTORIES
    are by default checked for such aliasing coming from symbolic
    links. As this needs to actually resolve symbolic links for each
    element on the GIT_CEILING_DIRECTORIES, you can disable this
    mechanism for some elements by listing them after an empty element
    on the GIT_CEILING_DIRECTORIES. e.g. Setting /home/me::/home/him to
    GIT_CEILING_DIRECTORIES makes Git resolve symbolic links in
    /home/me when checking if the current directory is under /home/me,
    but does not do so for /home/him.
    (merge 7ec30aa mh/maint-ceil-absolute later to maint).

Changes since v1.8.2-rc2 are as follows:

Fredrik Gustafsson (1):
      gitweb/README: remove reference to

Jiang Xin (2):
      l10n: git.pot: v1.8.2 round 4 (1 changed)
      l10n: zh_CN.po: translate 1 new message

Junio C Hamano (1):
      Git 1.8.2-rc3

Matthieu Moy (1):
      git-completion.zsh: define __gitcomp_file compatibility function

Peter Krefting (1):
      l10n: Update Swedish translation (2009t0f0u)

Ralf Thielow (4):
      l10n: de.po: translate 35 new messages
      l10n: de.po: translate 5 new messages
      l10n: de.po: correct translation of "bisect" messages
      l10n: de.po: translate 1 new message

Tran Ngoc Quan (1):
      l10n: vi.po: Update translation (2009t0f0u)

Junio C Hamano wrote on 07 Mar 2013