Publishing a Local Branch
A local branch that you create on your machine remains private to you until you choose to publish it. Now, let's share that branch with the world!
Publishing a Local Branch featured image

Publishing a Local Branch

A local branch that you create on your machine is kept private to you until you explicitly decide to publish it. This means that it's perfectly possible to keep some of your work private while sharing only certain other branches with the world.

Let's share our "contact-form" branch (which hasn't been published until now) on the "origin" remote:

$ git checkout contact-form
Switched to branch 'contact-form'

$ git push -u origin contact-form
Counting objects: 36, done.
Delta compression using up to 4 threads.
Compressing objects: 100% (31/31), done.
Writing objects: 100% (36/36), 90.67 KiB, done.
Total 36 (delta 12), reused 0 (delta 0)
Unpacking objects: 100% (36/36), done.
To file://Users/tobidobi/Desktop/GitCrashkurs/remote-test.git
 * [new branch]    contact-form -> contact-form
Branch contact-form set up to track remote branch contact-form from origin.

This command tells Git to publish our current local HEAD branch on the "origin" remote under the name "contact-form" (it makes sense to keep names between local branches and their remote counterparts the same).
The "-u" flag establishes a tracking connection between that newly created branch on the remote and our local "contact-form" branch. Performing the "git branch" command with a special set of options also shows us the tracking relationships in square brackets:

$ git branch -vva
* contact-form           56eddd1 [origin/contact-form] Add new contact..
  faq-content            814927a [crash-course-remote/faq-content: ahead
                                    1] Add new question
  master                 2dfe283 Implement the new login box
  remotes/crash-course-remote/faq-content e29fb3f Add FAQ questions
  remotes/crash-course-remote/master      2b504be Change headlines f...
  remotes/origin/contact-form             56eddd1 Add new contact fo...
  remotes/origin/master  56eddd1 Add new contact form page

After having created that new remote branch like this, updating it with new local commits that you create in the future is easy: simply call the "git push" command with no options as we did in our earlier example.

Anyone with access to your remote repository can now also start working on "contact-form": he can create a local branch on his machine that tracks this remote branch and also push changes to it.

About Us

As the makers of Tower, the best Git client for Mac and Windows, we help over 100,000 users in companies like Apple, Google, Amazon, Twitter, and Ebay get the most out of Git.

Just like with Tower, our mission with this platform is to help people become better professionals.

That's why we provide our guides, videos, and cheat sheets (about version control with Git and lots of other topics) for free.