gitrevisions(7) — Linux manual page


GITREVISIONS(7)                Git Manual                GITREVISIONS(7)

NAME         top

       gitrevisions - Specifying revisions and ranges for Git

SYNOPSIS         top


DESCRIPTION         top

       Many Git commands take revision parameters as arguments.
       Depending on the command, they denote a specific commit or, for
       commands which walk the revision graph (such as git-log(1)), all
       commits which are reachable from that commit. For commands that
       walk the revision graph one can also specify a range of revisions

       In addition, some Git commands (such as git-show(1) and
       git-push(1)) can also take revision parameters which denote other
       objects than commits, e.g. blobs ("files") or trees ("directories
       of files").


       A revision parameter <rev> typically, but not necessarily, names
       a commit object. It uses what is called an extended SHA-1 syntax.
       Here are various ways to spell object names. The ones listed near
       the end of this list name trees and blobs contained in a commit.


           This document shows the "raw" syntax as seen by git. The
           shell and other UIs might require additional quoting to
           protect special characters and to avoid word splitting.

       <sha1>, e.g. dae86e1950b1277e545cee180551750029cfe735, dae86e
           The full SHA-1 object name (40-byte hexadecimal string), or a
           leading substring that is unique within the repository. E.g.
           dae86e1950b1277e545cee180551750029cfe735 and dae86e both name
           the same commit object if there is no other object in your
           repository whose object name starts with dae86e.

       <describeOutput>, e.g. v1.7.4.2-679-g3bee7fb
           Output from git describe; i.e. a closest tag, optionally
           followed by a dash and a number of commits, followed by a
           dash, a g, and an abbreviated object name.

       <refname>, e.g. master, heads/master, refs/heads/master
           A symbolic ref name. E.g.  master typically means the commit
           object referenced by refs/heads/master. If you happen to have
           both heads/master and tags/master, you can explicitly say
           heads/master to tell Git which one you mean. When ambiguous,
           a <refname> is disambiguated by taking the first match in the
           following rules:

            1. If $GIT_DIR/<refname> exists, that is what you mean (this
               is usually useful only for HEAD, FETCH_HEAD, ORIG_HEAD,
               BISECT_HEAD and AUTO_MERGE);

            2. otherwise, refs/<refname> if it exists;

            3. otherwise, refs/tags/<refname> if it exists;

            4. otherwise, refs/heads/<refname> if it exists;

            5. otherwise, refs/remotes/<refname> if it exists;

            6. otherwise, refs/remotes/<refname>/HEAD if it exists.

               names the commit on which you based the changes in the
               working tree.

               records the branch which you fetched from a remote
               repository with your last git fetch invocation.

               is created by commands that move your HEAD in a drastic
               way (git am, git merge, git rebase, git reset), to record
               the position of the HEAD before their operation, so that
               you can easily change the tip of the branch back to the
               state before you ran them.

               records the commit(s) which you are merging into your
               branch when you run git merge.

               during a rebase, records the commit at which the
               operation is currently stopped, either because of
               conflicts or an edit command in an interactive rebase.

               records the commit which you are reverting when you run
               git revert.

               records the commit which you are cherry-picking when you
               run git cherry-pick.

               records the current commit to be tested when you run git
               bisect --no-checkout.

               records a tree object corresponding to the state the ort
               merge strategy wrote to the working tree when a merge
               operation resulted in conflicts.

           Note that any of the refs/* cases above may come either from
           the $GIT_DIR/refs directory or from the $GIT_DIR/packed-refs
           file. While the ref name encoding is unspecified, UTF-8 is
           preferred as some output processing may assume ref names in

           @ alone is a shortcut for HEAD.

       [<refname>]@{<date>}, e.g. master@{yesterday}, HEAD@{5 minutes
           A ref followed by the suffix @ with a date specification
           enclosed in a brace pair (e.g.  {yesterday}, {1 month 2 weeks
           3 days 1 hour 1 second ago} or {1979-02-26 18:30:00})
           specifies the value of the ref at a prior point in time. This
           suffix may only be used immediately following a ref name and
           the ref must have an existing log ($GIT_DIR/logs/<ref>). Note
           that this looks up the state of your local ref at a given
           time; e.g., what was in your local master branch last week.
           If you want to look at commits made during certain times, see
           --since and --until.

       <refname>@{<n>}, e.g. master@{1}
           A ref followed by the suffix @ with an ordinal specification
           enclosed in a brace pair (e.g.  {1}, {15}) specifies the n-th
           prior value of that ref. For example master@{1} is the
           immediate prior value of master while master@{5} is the 5th
           prior value of master. This suffix may only be used
           immediately following a ref name and the ref must have an
           existing log ($GIT_DIR/logs/<refname>).

       @{<n>}, e.g. @{1}
           You can use the @ construct with an empty ref part to get at
           a reflog entry of the current branch. For example, if you are
           on branch blabla then @{1} means the same as blabla@{1}.

       @{-<n>}, e.g. @{-1}
           The construct @{-<n>} means the <n>th branch/commit checked
           out before the current one.

       [<branchname>]@{upstream}, e.g. master@{upstream}, @{u}
           A branch B may be set up to build on top of a branch X
           (configured with branch.<name>.merge) at a remote R
           (configured with the branch X taken from remote R, typically
           found at refs/remotes/R/X.

       [<branchname>]@{push}, e.g. master@{push}, @{push}
           The suffix @{push} reports the branch "where we would push
           to" if git push were run while branchname was checked out (or
           the current HEAD if no branchname is specified). Like for
           @{upstream}, we report the remote-tracking branch that
           corresponds to that branch at the remote.

           Here’s an example to make it more clear:

               $ git config push.default current
               $ git config remote.pushdefault myfork
               $ git switch -c mybranch origin/master

               $ git rev-parse --symbolic-full-name @{upstream}

               $ git rev-parse --symbolic-full-name @{push}

           Note in the example that we set up a triangular workflow,
           where we pull from one location and push to another. In a
           non-triangular workflow, @{push} is the same as @{upstream},
           and there is no need for it.

           This suffix is also accepted when spelled in uppercase, and
           means the same thing no matter the case.

       <rev>^[<n>], e.g. HEAD^, v1.5.1^0
           A suffix ^ to a revision parameter means the first parent of
           that commit object.  ^<n> means the <n>th parent (i.e.
           <rev>^ is equivalent to <rev>^1). As a special rule, <rev>^0
           means the commit itself and is used when <rev> is the object
           name of a tag object that refers to a commit object.

       <rev>~[<n>], e.g. HEAD~, master~3
           A suffix ~ to a revision parameter means the first parent of
           that commit object. A suffix ~<n> to a revision parameter
           means the commit object that is the <n>th generation ancestor
           of the named commit object, following only the first parents.
           I.e.  <rev>~3 is equivalent to <rev>^^^ which is equivalent
           to <rev>^1^1^1. See below for an illustration of the usage of
           this form.

       <rev>^{<type>}, e.g. v0.99.8^{commit}
           A suffix ^ followed by an object type name enclosed in brace
           pair means dereference the object at <rev> recursively until
           an object of type <type> is found or the object cannot be
           dereferenced anymore (in which case, barf). For example, if
           <rev> is a commit-ish, <rev>^{commit} describes the
           corresponding commit object. Similarly, if <rev> is a
           tree-ish, <rev>^{tree} describes the corresponding tree
           object.  <rev>^0 is a short-hand for <rev>^{commit}.

           <rev>^{object} can be used to make sure <rev> names an object
           that exists, without requiring <rev> to be a tag, and without
           dereferencing <rev>; because a tag is already an object, it
           does not have to be dereferenced even once to get to an

           <rev>^{tag} can be used to ensure that <rev> identifies an
           existing tag object.

       <rev>^{}, e.g. v0.99.8^{}
           A suffix ^ followed by an empty brace pair means the object
           could be a tag, and dereference the tag recursively until a
           non-tag object is found.

       <rev>^{/<text>}, e.g. HEAD^{/fix nasty bug}
           A suffix ^ to a revision parameter, followed by a brace pair
           that contains a text led by a slash, is the same as the :/fix
           nasty bug syntax below except that it returns the youngest
           matching commit which is reachable from the <rev> before ^.

       :/<text>, e.g. :/fix nasty bug
           A colon, followed by a slash, followed by a text, names a
           commit whose commit message matches the specified regular
           expression. This name returns the youngest matching commit
           which is reachable from any ref, including HEAD. The regular
           expression can match any part of the commit message. To match
           messages starting with a string, one can use e.g.  :/^foo.
           The special sequence :/!  is reserved for modifiers to what
           is matched.  :/!-foo performs a negative match, while :/!!foo
           matches a literal !  character, followed by foo. Any other
           sequence beginning with :/!  is reserved for now. Depending
           on the given text, the shell’s word splitting rules might
           require additional quoting.

       <rev>:<path>, e.g. HEAD:README, master:./README
           A suffix : followed by a path names the blob or tree at the
           given path in the tree-ish object named by the part before
           the colon. A path starting with ./ or ../ is relative to the
           current working directory. The given path will be converted
           to be relative to the working tree’s root directory. This is
           most useful to address a blob or tree from a commit or tree
           that has the same tree structure as the working tree.

       :[<n>:]<path>, e.g. :0:README, :README
           A colon, optionally followed by a stage number (0 to 3) and a
           colon, followed by a path, names a blob object in the index
           at the given path. A missing stage number (and the colon that
           follows it) names a stage 0 entry. During a merge, stage 1 is
           the common ancestor, stage 2 is the target branch’s version
           (typically the current branch), and stage 3 is the version
           from the branch which is being merged.

       Here is an illustration, by Jon Loeliger. Both commit nodes B and
       C are parents of commit node A. Parent commits are ordered

           G   H   I   J
            \ /     \ /
             D   E   F
              \  |  / \
               \ | /   |
                \|/    |
                 B     C
                  \   /
                   \ /

           A =      = A^0
           B = A^   = A^1     = A~1
           C =      = A^2
           D = A^^  = A^1^1   = A~2
           E = B^2  = A^^2
           F = B^3  = A^^3
           G = A^^^ = A^1^1^1 = A~3
           H = D^2  = B^^2    = A^^^2  = A~2^2
           I = F^   = B^3^    = A^^3^
           J = F^2  = B^3^2   = A^^3^2


       History traversing commands such as git log operate on a set of
       commits, not just a single commit.

       For these commands, specifying a single revision, using the
       notation described in the previous section, means the set of
       commits reachable from the given commit.

       Specifying several revisions means the set of commits reachable
       from any of the given commits.

       A commit’s reachable set is the commit itself and the commits in
       its ancestry chain.

       There are several notations to specify a set of connected commits
       (called a "revision range"), illustrated below.

   Commit Exclusions
       ^<rev> (caret) Notation
           To exclude commits reachable from a commit, a prefix ^
           notation is used. E.g.  ^r1 r2 means commits reachable from
           r2 but exclude the ones reachable from r1 (i.e.  r1 and its

   Dotted Range Notations
       The .. (two-dot) Range Notation
           The ^r1 r2 set operation appears so often that there is a
           shorthand for it. When you have two commits r1 and r2 (named
           according to the syntax explained in SPECIFYING REVISIONS
           above), you can ask for commits that are reachable from r2
           excluding those that are reachable from r1 by ^r1 r2 and it
           can be written as r1..r2.

       The ... (three-dot) Symmetric Difference Notation
           A similar notation r1...r2 is called symmetric difference of
           r1 and r2 and is defined as r1 r2 --not $(git merge-base
           --all r1 r2). It is the set of commits that are reachable
           from either one of r1 (left side) or r2 (right side) but not
           from both.

       In these two shorthand notations, you can omit one end and let it
       default to HEAD. For example, origin.. is a shorthand for
       origin..HEAD and asks "What did I do since I forked from the
       origin branch?" Similarly, ..origin is a shorthand for
       HEAD..origin and asks "What did the origin do since I forked from
       them?" Note that .. would mean HEAD..HEAD which is an empty range
       that is both reachable and unreachable from HEAD.

       Commands that are specifically designed to take two distinct
       ranges (e.g. "git range-diff R1 R2" to compare two ranges) do
       exist, but they are exceptions. Unless otherwise noted, all "git"
       commands that operate on a set of commits work on a single
       revision range. In other words, writing two "two-dot range
       notation" next to each other, e.g.

           $ git log A..B C..D

       does not specify two revision ranges for most commands. Instead
       it will name a single connected set of commits, i.e. those that
       are reachable from either B or D but are reachable from neither A
       or C. In a linear history like this:


       because A and B are reachable from C, the revision range
       specified by these two dotted ranges is a single commit D.

   Other <rev>^ Parent Shorthand Notations
       Three other shorthands exist, particularly useful for merge
       commits, for naming a set that is formed by a commit and its
       parent commits.

       The r1^@ notation means all parents of r1.

       The r1^! notation includes commit r1 but excludes all of its
       parents. By itself, this notation denotes the single commit r1.

       The <rev>^-[<n>] notation includes <rev> but excludes the <n>th
       parent (i.e. a shorthand for <rev>^<n>..<rev>), with <n> = 1 if
       not given. This is typically useful for merge commits where you
       can just pass <commit>^- to get all the commits in the branch
       that was merged in merge commit <commit> (including <commit>

       While <rev>^<n> was about specifying a single commit parent,
       these three notations also consider its parents. For example you
       can say HEAD^2^@, however you cannot say HEAD^@^2.


           Include commits that are reachable from <rev> (i.e. <rev> and
           its ancestors).

           Exclude commits that are reachable from <rev> (i.e. <rev> and
           its ancestors).

           Include commits that are reachable from <rev2> but exclude
           those that are reachable from <rev1>. When either <rev1> or
           <rev2> is omitted, it defaults to HEAD.

           Include commits that are reachable from either <rev1> or
           <rev2> but exclude those that are reachable from both. When
           either <rev1> or <rev2> is omitted, it defaults to HEAD.

       <rev>^@, e.g. HEAD^@
           A suffix ^ followed by an at sign is the same as listing all
           parents of <rev> (meaning, include anything reachable from
           its parents, but not the commit itself).

       <rev>^!, e.g. HEAD^!
           A suffix ^ followed by an exclamation mark is the same as
           giving commit <rev> and all its parents prefixed with ^ to
           exclude them (and their ancestors).

       <rev>^-<n>, e.g. HEAD^-, HEAD^-2
           Equivalent to <rev>^<n>..<rev>, with <n> = 1 if not given.

       Here are a handful of examples using the Loeliger illustration
       above, with each step in the notation’s expansion and selection
       carefully spelt out:

              Args   Expanded arguments    Selected commits
              D                            G H D
              D F                          G H I J D F
              ^G D                         H D
              ^D B                         E I J F B
              ^D B C                       E I J F B C
              C                            I J F C
              B..C   = ^B C                C
              B...C  = B ^F C              G H D E B C
              B^-    = B^..B
                     = ^B^1 B              E I J F B
              C^@    = C^1
                     = F                   I J F
              B^@    = B^1 B^2 B^3
                     = D E F               D G H E F I J
              C^!    = C ^C^@
                     = C ^C^1
                     = C ^F                C
              B^!    = B ^B^@
                     = B ^B^1 ^B^2 ^B^3
                     = B ^D ^E ^F          B
              F^! D  = F ^I ^J D           G H D F

SEE ALSO         top


GIT         top

       Part of the git(1) suite

COLOPHON         top

       This page is part of the git (Git distributed version control
       system) project.  Information about the project can be found at
       ⟨⟩.  If you have a bug report for this manual
       page, see ⟨⟩.  This page was obtained
       from the project's upstream Git repository
       ⟨⟩ on 2023-12-22.  (At that time,
       the date of the most recent commit that was found in the
       repository was 2023-12-20.)  If you discover any rendering
       problems in this HTML version of the page, or you believe there
       is a better or more up-to-date source for the page, or you have
       corrections or improvements to the information in this COLOPHON
       (which is not part of the original manual page), send a mail to

Git         2023-12-20                GITREVISIONS(7)

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