Git amend previous commit

Rewriting commit history with git

Premature commits happen by accident more often than not. Sometimes you just missed adding a file or maybe you realized that you should have added a much more descriptive commit message. Either way, your intent is to edit your most recent commit. Thats where git commit --amend command comes to your rescue.

There are two major use cases of  git commit --amend.

  • To edit just the previous commit message without changing its snapshot.
  • To combine staged changes with the previous commit instead of committing it as an entirely new snapshot, without having to edit the commit message.

CAUTION : Never amend commits that have been shared with other developers. Because, amend removes the previous commit (SHA) from the history and creates a new commit(SHA). So, if other people have based their work off that commit, it will be a confusing for them.


Edit a previous commit message in Git

The simple command is the following.

git commit --amend -m "your new message"

Below example, shows an example usage for it.


Combine staged changes with the previous commit without creating a new snapshot

The simple command is the following.

git commit --amend --no-edit

Suppose, you added few files and committed the change. Now, you realize you want to add one more file to that previous commit itself. Below example, demonstrates how to do it. Another, use case would be after committing something you realize you want to make some more changes and amend it to the previous commit instead of creating a new snapshot.

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