Ben d'état

Ben Scott


~/GitHub branches and pull request workflow

30 Nov 2012

This is a workflow for contributing a pull request (PR) to a project on GitHub using feature branches:

  1. Open an issue on the target project through GitHub.
  2. Make a note of the issue number.
  3. Make sure your local copy is up to date via git pull upstream master.
    • If you are pushing to a branch, such as the target’s gh-pages branch, make sure you’re on the correct branch (git checkout -b gh-pages) and pull from the upstream branch (git pull upstream gh-pages).
  4. Create a new branch: git checkout -b issue123_name_of_branch.
  5. Make changes, make commits, etc. Commits should reference the issue by including the issue number: git com -m "#123 fixes some issue".
  6. Push to a new branch on your GH fork: git push -u origin issue123_name_of_branch.
  7. Open the new branch on GitHub and create a pull request.
  8. Checkout local master to return to the master branch, before your feature branch: git checkout master.
  9. Once the PR has been accepted pull from upstream (git pull upstream master) and push back to your master (git push).

If you are pushing to a branch when creating the pull request (for example to gh-pages) you have to select the source branch to compare to. The branch name has to be typed manually. The branch selection screen is also a bit dodgy with text selection (for me in any case).

Branch selection

Choose a ref to start at


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