Assorted git-related scripts
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Latest commit f3e82e4 Oct 15, 2017 @MestreLion MestreLion Merge pull request #26 from gebailey/master
Process subprocess output as strings, not bytes

Git Tools

Assorted git-related scripts and tools


  • Git (duh!). Tested in v1.7.9.5 and prior versions since 2010
  • Python (for git-restore-mtime). Tested in Python 2.7.4, also works in Python 3
  • Bash (for all other tools). Tested in Bash 4, some may work in Bash 3 or even sh

Bash and Python are already installed by default in virtually all GNU/Linux distros. And you probably already have Git if you are interested in these tools. But if somehow you don't, the command to install dependencies for Debian-like distros (like Ubuntu/Mint) is:

sudo apt-get bash python git


Just clone the repository and add the install directory to your $PATH

cd ~/some/dir
git clone
echo 'PATH=$PATH:~/some/dir/git-tools' >> ~/.profile  # or ~/.bashrc


Just delete the directory! And, optionally, remove it from your $PATH

rm -rf ~/some/dir/git-tools
sed -i '/git-tools/d' ~/.profile


This is a brief description of the tools. For more detailed instructions, see --help of each tool.


Batch renames branches with a matching prefix to another prefix


$ git-rename-branches bug bugfix
bug/128  -> bugfix/128
bug_test -> bugfix_test

$ git-rename-branches ma backup/ma
master -> backup/master
main   -> backup/main


Clones a subset of a git repository

Uses git clone and git filter-branch to remove from the clone all files but the ones requested, along with their associated commit history.

Clones a repository into a destination directory and runs on the clone git filter-branch --prune-empty --tree-filter 'git rm ...' -- --all to prune from history all files except the ones matching a pattern, effectively creating a clone with a subset of files (and history) of the original repository.

Useful for creating a new repository out of a set of files from another repository, migrating (only) their associated history. Very similar to what git filter-branch --subdirectory-filter does, but for a file pattern instead of just a single directory.


Recursively list repos with uncommitted changes

Recursively finds all git repositories in the given directory(es), runs git status on them, and prints the location of repositories with uncommitted changes. The tool I definitely use the most.


Resolve rebase conflicts and failed cherry-picks by favoring 'theirs' version

When using git rebase, conflicts are usually wanted to be resolved by favoring the working branch version (the branch being rebased, 'theirs' side in a rebase), instead of the upstream version (the base branch, 'ours' side). But git rebase --strategy -X theirs is only available from git 1.7.3. For older versions, git-rebase-theirs is the solution. And despite the name, it's also useful for fixing failed cherry-picks


Restore original modification time of files based on the date of the most recent commit that modified them

Probably the most popular and useful tool.

Git, unlike other version control systems, does not preserve the original timestamp of committed files. Whenever repositories are cloned, or branches/files are checked out, file timestamps are reset to the current date. While this behavior has its justifications (notably when using make to compile software), sometimes it is desirable to restore the original modification date of a file (for example, when generating release tarballs). As git does not provide any way to do that, git-restore-mtime tries to workaround this limitation.

For more information and background, see


A git-merge wrapper that delete files on a "foreign" branch before merging

Answer for "How to setup a git driver to ignore a folder on merge?", see


$ git checkout master
$ git-strip-merge design photoshop/*.psd


Patches are welcome! Fork, hack, request pull!

If you find a bug or have any enhancement request, please open a new issue

Written by

Rodrigo Silva (MestreLion)

Licenses and Copyright

Copyright (C) 2012 Rodrigo Silva (MestreLion)

License GPLv3+: GNU GPL version 3 or later

This is free software: you are free to change and redistribute it.

There is NO WARRANTY, to the extent permitted by law.