3.4.5 Working with remote branches

Fetching new branches from git.sv.gnu.org

To fetch and check out a new branch named branch on git.sv.gnu.org, run from top of the Git repository

git config --add remote.origin.fetch \
  +refs/heads/branch:refs/remotes/origin/branch

git checkout --track -b branch origin/branch

After this, you can pull branch from git.sv.gnu.org with:

git pull

Note that this command generally fetches all branches you added with git remote add (when you initialized the repository) or git config --add, i.e. it updates all remote branches from remote origin, then it merges the remote branch tracked by the current branch into the current branch. For example, if your current branch is master, origin/master will be merged into master.

Local clones, or having several working trees

If you play with several Git branches, e.g. master, translation, stable/2.12), you may want to have one source and build tree for each branch; this is possible with subdirectories of your local Git repository, used as local cloned subrepositories. To create a local clone for the branch named branch, run

git checkout branch
git clone -lsn . subdir
cd subdir
git reset --hard

Note that subdir must be a directory name which does not already exist. In subdir, you can use all Git commands to browse revisions history, commit and uncommit changes; to update the cloned subrepository with changes made on the main repository, cd into subdir and run git pull; to send changes made on the subrepository back to the main repository, run git push from subdir. Note that only one branch (the currently checked out branch) is created in the subrepository by default; it is possible to have several branches in a subrepository and do usual operations (checkout, merge, create, delete...) on these branches, but this possibility is not detailed here.

When you push branch from subdir to the main repository, and branch is checked out in the main repository, you must save uncommitted changes (see git stash) and do git reset --hard in the main repository in order to apply pushed changes in the working tree of the main repository.


LilyPond — Contributor’s Guide v2.19.13 (development-branch).