Lets say we have have a project A that works really well and serves our purpose. Then there is this new killer feature that we want to add to the project. Adding it directly to project A is not a really good thing as it might break whats working.
So what happens. We create a branch on which we start implementing this new feature. The branch is a copy of the code, that we can work with safely. The branch can be experimental features or just things we want to test to see if they are stable enough.
Branches are an important feature in git ahd here are the basic commands I use:
git branch #list all branches git branch <name> #creates branch called name git branch -m <name> #change branch name to name git branch -d <name> #deletes the branch. If changes havent been #merged an error message is shown. git branch -D <name> #force delete branch even with unmerged conflicts git checkout <existing-branch> #switch to this branch git checkout -b <name> #create branch name and switch to it
Sometimes you create a branch but it cannot push to the server. To fix this, you do:
git push --set-upstream origin <branch_name>
And when you clone from a server, the git branch command will only show the master branch. To view all the branches you do:
git branch -a
These are the branch commands I interact with most of the time. I'll add more over time as I get more familiar with branching.