What Is Git Bash And How To Use It?
What Is Git Bash And How To Use It?
Git Bash is a tool aimed at Windows users, it comes with the power of the Unix shell and built-in support for Git. In this post, we will discuss what Git Bash is and how to use it?
Every Windows PC is equipped with a Command Prompt (cmd) or command-line textual interface on the operating system. Using the Command Prompt, we can install programs, create new users, and run scripts.
The Windows Command Prompt is almost similar or equivalent to the Unix Command Prompt, namely Bash. Bash is often considered superior because of its powerful features. This includes arithmetic, array variables, loops, and branches. Git Bash gives Windows users access to Bash and its powerful features.
What is Git?
Git is a version control system. It keeps track of the changes you make to a set of files using commits. Commits allow you to capture the status of a project at a certain point in time. And Git allows you to go back to a previous commit whenever you want.
You can install and run Git locally or use one of their online hosts (such as GitHub or Bitbucket). But Git is basically a Unix-style command-line utility. It even comes preinstalled on some macOS and Linux systems.
Git is probably the most popular version control system in the world today. This is due to its collaborative features. Branching allows you to create independent local versions of your codebase that you can later merge with others. This is one of the main reasons why programmers use Git to share their contributions to source code development. Git is also open source, free to use, and easy to learn.
What Is Bash?
Bash stands for Bourne Again Shell. The name is a play on the Bourne shell it replaces. Bash has all the core Bourne shell features such as grammar and variable expansion. Git can install Bash, some common Bash utilities as well as Git on Windows OS. Here are some of Git Bash's features, including:
* Multi-character summon option
* Command-line editing
* Timestamped command-line history
* One-dimensional array variables
* For loop expressions
* Job controls
What is Git Bash?
Even though Git is a collection of command-line utility programs, you can use it on Windows through its GUI-based applications. Bash is only available on Unix-like operating systems, such as macOS and Linux. Git Bash is only for Microsoft Windows users. It provides both Git and Bash command-line environment emulation. Installing Git Bash on a Windows machine will give you access to a native shell environment for macOS and Linux users.
Popular Git Bash Commands
Before you start using Git Bash, you should pay attention that the Bash commands that you can use in the command-line interface are case-sensitive. This differs from the Windows Command Prompt, many parts of which are not case sensitive.
CD stands for "change directory". This allows Git Bash users to navigate from one directory to another. All you need to provide is the path to the destination directory:
If you don't provide the directory path after the cd command, it will take you to the home directory. You can also easily navigate or go back one level to the previous directory from where you are currently:
The mkdir command stands for “make directory” and as the name suggests, it allows you to create new directories. All you need to provide is the desired directory name:
This will create a new subdirectory of your current directory.
The rmdir (remove directory) command removes empty directories. The rmdir command can remove one or more directories at once, the only requirement is that they must be empty. If you want to delete lots of separate empty directories, the order can be important.
Make sure you delete the child directory before the parent one, or the parent directory won't be empty when rmdir tries to remove it:
rmdir [main_directory/sub_directory] [main_directory]
The rm (remove) command allows you to remove specific files from a directory. All it takes is the path to the file you want to delete:
It also allows you to delete filled directories using certain options. To do this, use one of the following options:
All of these options are equivalent and they will delete files recursively. This means that rm will delete the given directory, and all files under it, including any subdirectories.
The mv command allows you to move files or folders to any directory. It takes two arguments: the file name (or directory name) and the directory path.
mv [file.txt] [directory_path]
You can also use mv to rename files as that operation is a special case of moving them:
mv file1.txt file2.txt
The ls command allows you to list all the files and folders in a directory:
You can use the echo command to print a string to the Git Bash terminal:
The cat (concatenate) command uses several options and has three main functions. This allows you to create and add data to files:
After you run the above command, Git Bash will stay in the newly created file and allow you to add to it. If you want to exit the file, press Ctrl + C. cat also allows you to see the contents of the file:
You must always include the extension of the file you want to read, or Git Bash will not find the file. Lastly, cat allows you to append one file to the end of another:
cat [file1.txt >> file2.txt]
In this example, Git Bash appends the contents of file1.txt to the end of file2.txt. It's important to include the extension of both files you want to write to. If you don't include the extension for the first file, Git Bash won't find it. If you forget the extension for the second file, Git Bash will create a new file.
So what is Git Bash? Simply put, Git Bash is a special application for Microsoft Windows that provides emulation or mock screens for the Git command line. Git for Windows has a Bash emulation that will be used to run Git from the command line. However, advanced Bash features aren't the only things you get access to when you install Git Bash. You will also get access to Git and all of its features.
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