Git Merge

Traditional Git Merge


You will be using py-demo-web-logs-continued as the github repository for this walkthrough.

Using the git merge command is the traditional way to merge development branches into your master branch of development.

The main benefits of git merge is that you will keep the original history of the master branch in tact. The downside is that you will be working directly on the master branch and any mistakes or unwanted changes will cause problems.

  • Fork the repository:[your-github-username]/py-demo-web-logs-continued to you your personal github account if you have not done so already.

  • Clone the forked repository:[your-github-username]/py-demo-web-logs-continued onto your personal machine.


In the example below we are cloning the github repo into the home/student/Desktop directory.


Run the command: git clone[your-github-username]/py-demo-web-logs-continued in the directory you cloned your repository.

git merge

The git merge joins two or more development histories together. When you perform a merge you are merging the target branch into the currently checked out branch.

The command to merge the target-branch into the currently checked out branch would be:

git merge [target-branch].

Merge new-feature Branch into master

Open up the py-demo-web-logs-continued project directory inside of your terminal.

Check the existing branches:


Run the command git branch -a

You are going to merge the new-feature branch and the new-function branch into master.

Actual Merge

Lets start with by merging new-feature branch into the master branch:


Make sure the currently checked out branch is master before running the next command.


While on the master branch run the command: git merge origin/new-feature


Notice that the above example uses the remote name origin when merging. The remote branches had not yet existed on the local machine when I ran this command. If you already had checked out these remote branches you could have left off the remote name origin and simply run: git merge new-feature.

The merge was successful! Remember to update your remote master branch:


Run the command git push origin master.

Merge new-function Branch

Now that you have merged the new-feature branch into master its time to merge the new-function branch. Since both of these branches made edits to the same files you are going to have a merge conflict.


Run the command git merge origin/new-function.


Remember that if you already have the new-function branch existing locally you can leave off the remote name origin and run the command git merge new-function!

Now would be a great time for you to run a git status command to see what is going on:


What Changes to Keep?

Paul and John both made changes to the file. We need to decide which ones to keep and which to throw away.

The changes that we want to keep in this walkthrough include the following:

  • function created from John’s solution
  • name of file used in Paul’s solution (web.log)

Resolve conflicts in

Open up the file with vim (or nano or the file editor of your choice) so that you can make the necessary changes and fix the conflicts inside of the file:


Make the below changes:


After making the required changes to the file it should look similar to the above image. Write the changes and exit vim.


Make sure to write the changes to the file before exiting vim!

Now that the conflicts have been resolved inside of the file you need to resolve the conflicts inside of the .gitignore file.

Resolve Conflicts in .gitignore

Open the .gitignore file with vim.


Knowing that web.log is the name of the file preferred you can remove everything else from the .gitignore file so that there are no conflicts.


Write the file and exit vim so that you are back inside of the py-web-logs-continued directory.

Staging, Committing and Pushing Conflict Resolution

Now that all conflicts have been resolved you will need to add the changes to staging so that you can continue the merge.

Add the files to staging and commit changes:


Run the following commands:

  • git add .: Add changes to staging
  • git status: Check status
  • git commit -m "your commit message: Commit changes to complete merge
  • git push origin master: Push changes to remote repo

Both the new-feature branch and the new-function branch can now be deleted safely!


  • Traditional git merge command: Merge development branches into master branch using the git merge command
    • Merged the new-feature branch into master without conflict
    • Merged new-function branch into master while resolving conflicts Staging:
    • Pushed updated files into remote master branch