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Git 2.8 Release Notes
Backward compatibility note
The rsync:// transport has been removed.
Updates since v2.7
UI, Workflows & Features
* It turns out "git clone" over rsync transport has been broken when
the source repository has packed references for a long time, and
nobody noticed nor complained about it.
* "push" learned that its "--delete" option can be shortened to
"-d", just like "branch --delete" and "branch -d" are the same
* "git blame" learned to produce the progress eye-candy when it takes
too much time before emitting the first line of the result.
* "git grep" can now be configured (or told from the command line)
how many threads to use when searching in the working tree files.
* Some "git notes" operations, e.g. "git log --notes=<note>", should
be able to read notes from any tree-ish that is shaped like a notes
tree, but the notes infrastructure required that the argument must
be a ref under refs/notes/. Loosen it to require a valid ref only
when the operation would update the notes (in which case we must
have a place to store the updated notes tree, iow, a ref).
* "git grep" by default does not fall back to its "--no-index"
behavior outside a directory under Git's control (otherwise the
user may by mistake end up running a huge recursive search); with a
new configuration (set in $HOME/.gitconfig--by definition this
cannot be set in the config file per project), this safety can be
* "git pull --rebase" has been extended to allow invoking
"rebase -i".
* "git p4" learned to cope with the type of a file getting changed.
* "git format-patch" learned to notice format.outputDirectory
configuration variable. This allows "-o <dir>" option to be
omitted on the command line if you always use the same directory in
your workflow.
* "interpret-trailers" has been taught to optionally update a file in
place, instead of always writing the result to the standard output.
* Many commands that read files that are expected to contain text
that is generated (or can be edited) by the end user to control
their behavior (e.g. "git grep -f <filename>") have been updated
to be more tolerant to lines that are terminated with CRLF (they
used to treat such a line to contain payload that ends with CR,
which is usually not what the users expect).
* "git notes merge" used to limit the source of the merged notes tree
to somewhere under refs/notes/ hierarchy, which was too limiting
when inventing a workflow to exchange notes with remote
repositories using remote-tracking notes trees (located in e.g.
refs/remote-notes/ or somesuch).
* "git ls-files" learned a new "--eol" option to help diagnose
end-of-line problems.
* "ls-remote" learned an option to show which branch the remote
repository advertises as its primary by pointing its HEAD at.
* New http.proxyAuthMethod configuration variable can be used to
specify what authentication method to use, as a way to work around
proxies that do not give error response expected by libcurl when
CURLAUTH_ANY is used. Also, the codepath for proxy authentication
has been taught to use credential API to store the authentication
material in user's keyrings.
* Update the untracked cache subsystem and change its primary UI from
"git update-index" to "git config".
* There were a few "now I am doing this thing" progress messages in
the TCP connection code that can be triggered by setting a verbose
option internally in the code, but "git fetch -v" and friends never
passed the verbose option down to that codepath.
* Clean/smudge filters defined in a configuration file of lower
precedence can now be overridden to be a pass-through no-op by
setting the variable to an empty string.
* A new "<branch>^{/!-<pattern>}" notation can be used to name a
commit that is reachable from <branch> that does not match the
given <pattern>.
* The "user.useConfigOnly" configuration variable can be used to
force the user to always set & configuration
variables, serving as a reminder for those who work on multiple
projects and do not want to put these in their $HOME/.gitconfig.
* "git fetch" and friends that make network connections can now be
told to only use ipv4 (or ipv6).
* Some authentication methods do not need username or password, but
libcurl needs some hint that it needs to perform authentication.
Supplying an empty username and password string is a valid way to
do so, but you can set the http.[<url>.]emptyAuth configuration
variable to achieve the same, if you find it cleaner.
* You can now set http.[<url>.]pinnedpubkey to specify the pinned
public key when building with recent enough versions of libcURL.
* The configuration system has been taught to phrase where it found a
bad configuration variable in a better way in its error messages.
"git config" learnt a new "--show-origin" option to indicate where
the values come from.
* The "credential-cache" daemon process used to run in whatever
directory it happened to start in, but this made umount(2)ing the
filesystem that houses the repository harder; now the process
chdir()s to the directory that house its own socket on startup.
* When "git submodule update" did not result in fetching the commit
object in the submodule that is referenced by the superproject, the
command learned to retry another fetch, specifically asking for
that commit that may not be connected to the refs it usually
* "git merge-recursive" learned "--no-renames" option to disable its
rename detection logic.
* Across the transition at around Git version 2.0, the user used to
get a pretty loud warning when running "git push" without setting
push.default configuration variable. We no longer warn because the
transition was completed a long time ago.
* README has been renamed to and its contents got tweaked
slightly to make it easier on the eyes.
Performance, Internal Implementation, Development Support etc.
* Add a framework to spawn a group of processes in parallel, and use
it to run "git fetch --recurse-submodules" in parallel.
* A slight update to the Makefile to mark ".PHONY" targets as such
* In-core storage of the reverse index for .pack files (which lets
you go from a pack offset to an object name) has been streamlined.
* d95138e6 (setup: set env $GIT_WORK_TREE when work tree is set, like
$GIT_DIR, 2015-06-26) attempted to work around a glitch in alias
handling by overwriting GIT_WORK_TREE environment variable to
affect subprocesses when set_git_work_tree() gets called, which
resulted in a rather unpleasant regression to "clone" and "init".
Try to address the same issue by always restoring the environment
and respawning the real underlying command when handling alias.
* The low-level code that is used to create symbolic references has
been updated to share more code with the code that deals with
normal references.
* strbuf_getline() and friends have been redefined to make it easier
to identify which callsite of (new) strbuf_getline_lf() should
allow and silently ignore carriage-return at the end of the line to
help users on DOSsy systems.
* "git shortlog" used to accumulate various pieces of information
regardless of what was asked to be shown in the final output. It
has been optimized by noticing what need not to be collected
(e.g. there is no need to collect the log messages when showing
only the number of changes).
* "git checkout $branch" (and other operations that share the same
underlying machinery) has been optimized.
* Automated tests in Travis CI environment has been optimized by
persisting runtime statistics of previous "prove" run, executing
tests that take longer before other ones; this reduces the total
wallclock time.
* Test scripts have been updated to remove assumptions that are not
portable between Git for POSIX and Git for Windows, or to skip ones
with expectations that are not satisfiable on Git for Windows.
* Some calls to strcpy(3) triggers a false warning from static
analyzers that are less intelligent than humans, and reducing the
number of these false hits helps us notice real issues. A few
calls to strcpy(3) in a couple of programs that are already safe
has been rewritten to avoid false warnings.
* The "name_path" API was an attempt to reduce the need to construct
the full path out of a series of path components while walking a
tree hierarchy, but over time made less efficient because the path
needs to be flattened, e.g. to be compared with another path that
is already flat. The API has been removed and its users have been
rewritten to simplify the overall code complexity.
* Help those who debug http(s) part of the system.
(merge 0054045 sp/remote-curl-ssl-strerror later to maint).
* The internal API to interact with "remote.*" configuration
variables has been streamlined.
* The ref-filter's format-parsing code has been refactored, in
preparation for "branch --format" and friends.
* Traditionally, the tests that try commands that work on the
contents in the working tree were named with "worktree" in their
filenames, but with the recent addition of "git worktree"
subcommand, whose tests are also named similarly, it has become
harder to tell them apart. The traditional tests have been renamed
to use "work-tree" instead in an attempt to differentiate them.
(merge 5549029 mg/work-tree-tests later to maint).
* Many codepaths forget to check return value from git_config_set();
the function is made to die() to make sure we do not proceed when
setting a configuration variable failed.
(merge 3d18064 ps/config-error later to maint).
* Handling of errors while writing into our internal asynchronous
process has been made more robust, which reduces flakiness in our
(merge 43f3afc jk/epipe-in-async later to maint).
* There is a new DEVELOPER knob that enables many compiler warning
options in the Makefile.
* The way the test scripts configure the Apache web server has been
updated to work also for Apache 2.4 running on RedHat derived
* Out of maintenance gcc on OSX 10.6 fails to compile the code in
'master'; work it around by using clang by default on the platform.
* The "name_path" API was an attempt to reduce the need to construct
the full path out of a series of path components while walking a
tree hierarchy, but over time made less efficient because the path
needs to be flattened, e.g. to be compared with another path that
is already flat, in many cases. The API has been removed and its
users have been rewritten to simplify the overall code complexity.
This incidentally also closes some heap-corruption holes.
* Recent versions of GNU grep is pickier than before to decide if a
file is "binary" and refuse to give line-oriented hits when we
expect it to, unless explicitly told with "-a" option. As our
scripted Porcelains use sane_grep wrapper for line-oriented data,
even when the line may contain non-ASCII payload we took from
end-user data, use "grep -a" to implement sane_grep wrapper when
using an implementation of "grep" that takes the "-a" option.
Also contains various documentation updates and code clean-ups.
Fixes since v2.7
Unless otherwise noted, all the fixes since v2.7 in the maintenance
track are contained in this release (see the maintenance releases'
notes for details).
* An earlier change in 2.5.x-era broke users' hooks and aliases by
exporting GIT_WORK_TREE to point at the root of the working tree,
interfering when they tried to use a different working tree without
setting GIT_WORK_TREE environment themselves.
* The "exclude_list" structure has the usual "alloc, nr" pair of
fields to be used by ALLOC_GROW(), but clear_pattern_list() forgot
to reset 'alloc' to 0 when it cleared 'nr' to discard the managed
* Paths that have been told the index about with "add -N" are not
quite yet in the index, but a few commands behaved as if they
already are in a harmful way.
* "git send-email" was confused by escaped quotes stored in the alias
files saved by "mutt", which has been corrected.
* A few non-portable C construct have been spotted by clang compiler
and have been fixed.
* The documentation has been updated to hint the connection between
the '--signoff' option and DCO.
* "git reflog" incorrectly assumed that all objects that used to be
at the tip of a ref must be commits, which caused it to segfault.
* The ignore mechanism saw a few regressions around untracked file
listing and sparse checkout selection areas in 2.7.0; the change
that is responsible for the regression has been reverted.
* Some codepaths used fopen(3) when opening a fixed path in $GIT_DIR
(e.g. COMMIT_EDITMSG) that is meant to be left after the command is
done. This however did not work well if the repository is set to
be shared with core.sharedRepository and the umask of the previous
user is tighter. They have been made to work better by calling
unlink(2) and retrying after fopen(3) fails with EPERM.
* Asking gitweb for a nonexistent commit left a warning in the server
Somebody may want to follow this up with an additional test, perhaps?
IIRC, we do test that no Perl warnings are given to the server log,
so this should have been caught if our test coverage were good.
* "git rebase", unlike all other callers of "gc --auto", did not
ignore the exit code from "gc --auto".
* Many codepaths that run "gc --auto" before exiting kept packfiles
mapped and left the file descriptors to them open, which was not
friendly to systems that cannot remove files that are open. They
now close the packs before doing so.
* A recent optimization to filter-branch in v2.7.0 introduced a
regression when --prune-empty filter is used, which has been
* The description for SANITY prerequisite the test suite uses has
been clarified both in the comment and in the implementation.
* "git tag" started listing a tag "foo" as "tags/foo" when a branch
named "foo" exists in the same repository; remove this unnecessary
disambiguation, which is a regression introduced in v2.7.0.
* The way "git svn" uses auth parameter was broken by Subversion
1.9.0 and later.
* The "split" subcommand of "git subtree" (in contrib/) incorrectly
skipped merges when it shouldn't, which was corrected.
* A few options of "git diff" did not work well when the command was
run from a subdirectory.
* The command line completion learned a handful of additional options
and command specific syntax.
* dirname() emulation has been added, as Msys2 lacks it.
* The underlying machinery used by "ls-files -o" and other commands
has been taught not to create empty submodule ref cache for a
directory that is not a submodule. This removes a ton of wasted
CPU cycles.
* "git worktree" had a broken code that attempted to auto-fix
possible inconsistency that results from end-users moving a
worktree to different places without telling Git (the original
repository needs to maintain back-pointers to its worktrees,
but "mv" run by end-users who are not familiar with that fact
will obviously not adjust them), which actually made things
worse when triggered.
* The low-level merge machinery has been taught to use CRLF line
termination when inserting conflict markers to merged contents that
are themselves CRLF line-terminated.
* "git push --force-with-lease" has been taught to report if the push
needed to force (or fast-forwarded).
* The emulated "yes" command used in our test scripts has been
tweaked not to spend too much time generating unnecessary output
that is not used, to help those who test on Windows where it would
not stop until it fills the pipe buffer due to lack of SIGPIPE.
* The documentation for "git clean" has been corrected; it mentioned
that .git/modules/* are removed by giving two "-f", which has never
been the case.
* The vimdiff backend for "git mergetool" has been tweaked to arrange
and number buffers in the order that would match the expectation of
majority of people who read left to right, then top down and assign
buffers 1 2 3 4 "mentally" to local base remote merge windows based
on that order.
* "git show 'HEAD:Foo[BAR]Baz'" did not interpret the argument as a
rev, i.e. the object named by the pathname with wildcard
characters in a tree object.
(merge aac4fac nd/dwim-wildcards-as-pathspecs later to maint).
* "git rev-parse --git-common-dir" used in the worktree feature
misbehaved when run from a subdirectory.
(merge 17f1365 nd/git-common-dir-fix later to maint).
* "git worktree add -B <branchname>" did not work.
* The "v(iew)" subcommand of the interactive "git am -i" command was
broken in 2.6.0 timeframe when the command was rewritten in C.
(merge 708b8cc jc/am-i-v-fix later to maint).
* "git merge-tree" used to mishandle "both sides added" conflict with
its own "create a fake ancestor file that has the common parts of
what both sides have added and do a 3-way merge" logic; this has
been updated to use the usual "3-way merge with an empty blob as
the fake common ancestor file" approach used in the rest of the
(merge 907681e jk/no-diff-emit-common later to maint).
* The memory ownership rule of fill_textconv() API, which was a bit
tricky, has been documented a bit better.
(merge a64e6a4 jk/more-comments-on-textconv later to maint).
* Update various codepaths to avoid manually-counted malloc().
(merge 08c95df jk/tighten-alloc later to maint).
* The documentation did not clearly state that the 'simple' mode is
now the default for "git push" when push.default configuration is
not set.
(merge f6b1fb3 mm/push-simple-doc later to maint).
* Recent versions of GNU grep are pickier when their input contains
arbitrary binary data, which some of our tests uses. Rewrite the
tests to sidestep the problem.
(merge 3b1442d jk/grep-binary-workaround-in-test later to maint).
* A helper function "git submodule" uses since v2.7.0 to list the
modules that match the pathspec argument given to its subcommands
(e.g. "submodule add <repo> <path>") has been fixed.
(merge 2b56bb7 sb/submodule-module-list-fix later to maint).
* "git config section.var value" to set a value in per-repository
configuration file failed when it was run outside any repository,
but didn't say the reason correctly.
(merge 638fa62 js/config-set-in-non-repository later to maint).
* The code to read the pack data using the offsets stored in the pack
idx file has been made more carefully check the validity of the
data in the idx.
(merge 7465feb jk/pack-idx-corruption-safety later to maint).
* Other minor clean-ups and documentation updates
(merge f459823 ak/extract-argv0-last-dir-sep later to maint).
(merge 63ca1c0 ak/git-strip-extension-from-dashed-command later to maint).
(merge 4867f11 ps/plug-xdl-merge-leak later to maint).
(merge 4938686 dt/initial-ref-xn-commit-doc later to maint).
(merge 9537f21 ma/update-hooks-sample-typofix later to maint).