Featured Image: please let me hold your hand by pippimuckel is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 3.0

In the previous post we went through some concepts and terminology in git.

Some basic git commands

Create a repository

Let us take a look at how we can create a local repository.

    git init
screenshot of a git init command run

What does it do?

  • Initialises a repository for a project
  • Creates a .git folder for your repository
  • Used by Git to track changes that happen in that repository folder
  • Git stores repository specific settings to that folder
  • It tracks the latest change in a branch in that folder
  • Also stores configuration for the repository in there

A new repository, needs some configuration. Let us go ahead and configure it.


  • Configuration can be
    • Local (repo specific) or global (system wide)
    • Stores information about
      • Your name, email etc.
      • Remotes (talk about that soon)
      • Aliases (talk about that soon)

Status check - Where’s my local at?

    git status
screenshot of a git status

Untracked files

A file that is not yet in the repository

screenshot of untracked files

Modified files

Are those that were already committed to the git repository and have been changed since.

Staging changes to commit

git add . – Stage all files in this directory that have changed for commit

screenshot of a git add
  • Or if you want to be specific and stage only one or two files among several, then
    • git add filename.extension
  • When you run git commit, staged files are picked to be committed
  • Your GUI for GIT might offer to automatically stage any unstaged files for you

So what does a commit do?

  • Record changes to your local git database
    • choose files you want to be part of the commit
    • then make the commit with a description that is comprehendable by your collaborators
  • running the commit command will open up the editor you configured while setting up git
    git commit
screenshot of git commit

git commit opened up vscode which is my default git editor. it might open another editor for you, depending on which one you chose as your default editor when installing Git.

As you finish your commit message and close your editor, you get the status of it in your git bash session.

screenshot of a after a successful commit

That’s cool but where do I see all commits?

a log of wood to represent git log
    git log

There are many ways to display your history of commits

Let us explore branching in the next post