How to resolve a binary file conflict with Git

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Some of these settings can also be specified for a path, so that Git applies those settings only for a subdirectory or subset of files. These path-specific settings binary files differ in git called Git attributes and are set either in a. Using attributes, you can do things like specify separate merge strategies for individual files or directories in your project, tell Git how to diff non-text files, or have Git filter content before you check it into or out of Git.

One cool trick for which you can use Git attributes is telling Git binary files differ in git files are binary in cases it otherwise may not be able to figure out and giving Git special instructions about how to handle those files.

For instance, some text files may be machine generated and not diffable, whereas some binary files can be diffed. Some files look like text files but for all intents and purposes are to be treated as binary data. For instance, Xcode projects on the Mac contain a file that ends in. The file is meant to be consumed by a machine. In essence, you want to treat it like a binary file. To tell Git to treat all pbxproj files as binary data, add the following line to your. You can also use the Git attributes functionality to effectively diff binary files.

You do this by telling Git how to convert your binary data to a text format that can be compared via the normal diff. Everyone knows that Word is the most horrific editor around, but oddly, everyone still uses it. If you want to version-control Word documents, you can stick them in a Git repository and commit every once in a while; but what good does that do?

If you run git diff normally, you only see something like this:. It turns out you can do this fairly well using Git attributes. Put the following line in your. This tells Git that any file that matches this pattern. You have to set it up. Finally, you can configure Git to use this script:. Now Git knows that if it tries to do a diff between two snapshots, and any of the files end in.

This effectively makes nice text-based versions of your Word files before attempting to diff them. Chapter 1 of this book was converted to Word format and committed in a Git repository. Then a new paragraph was added. Another interesting problem you can solve this way involves diffing image files.

One way to do this is to run image files through a filter that extracts their EXIF information — metadata that is recorded with most image formats. If you download and install the exiftool program, you can use it to convert your images into text about the metadata, so at least the diff will show you a textual representation of any changes that happened. If you replace an image in your project and run git diffyou see something like this:. Git attributes offers you two ways to do this.

If you set this attribute on a file or set of files, then the next time you check out that branch, Git will replace that field with the SHA-1 binary files differ in git the blob.

However, that result is of limited use. These filters can be set to do all sorts of fun things. The original commit message for this feature gives a simple example of running all your C source code through the indent program before committing. You can set it binary files differ in git by setting the filter attribute in your. The cat program does essentially nothing: This combination effectively filters all C source code files through indent before committing.

To do this properly, you need a small script that takes a filename, figures out the last commit date for this project, and inserts the date into the file. Here is a small Ruby script that does that:. If you commit those changes and check out the file again, you see the keyword properly substituted:. You can see how powerful this technique can be for customized applications.

You have to be careful, though, because the. When you design these filters, they should be able to fail gracefully and have the project still work properly.

Git attribute data also allows you to do some interesting things when exporting an archive of your project. You can tell Git not to export certain files or directories when generating an archive.

You can add the following binary files differ in git to your Git attributes file:. When binary files differ in git files for deployment you can apply git log 's formatting and keyword-expansion processing to selected portions of files marked with the export-subst attribute.

The substitutions can include for example the commit message and any git notesand git log can do simple word wrapping:. You can also use Git attributes to tell Git to use different merge strategies for specific files in your project.

This is helpful if a branch in your project has diverged or is specialized, but you want to be able to merge changes back in from it, and you want to ignore certain files. Say you have a database settings binary files differ in git called database. You can set up an attribute like this:. If you merge in the other branch, instead of having merge conflicts with the database. Git on the Server 4.

Git and Other Systems 9. Git in Other Environments A1. Embedding Git in your Applications A2. Binary Files One cool trick for which binary files differ in git can use Git attributes is telling Git which files are binary in cases it otherwise may not be able to figure out and giving Git special instructions about how to binary files differ in git those files.

Identifying Binary Files Some files look like text files but for all intents and purposes are to be treated as binary data.

Binary files differ in git Binary Files You can also use the Git attributes functionality binary files differ in git effectively diff binary files. If you run git diff normally, you only see something like this: Finally, you can configure Git to use this script: We will begin at the beginning by explaining some background on version control tools, then move on to how to get Git running on your system and finally how to get it setup to start working binary files differ in git.

At the end of this chapter you should understand why Git is around, why you should use it and you should be all setup to do so. About Version Control What is "version control", and why should you care? Version control is a system that records changes to a file or set of files over time so that you can recall specific versions later. For the examples in this book you will use software source binary files differ in git as the files being version controlled, though in reality you can do this with nearly any type of file on a computer.

If you are a graphic or web designer and want to keep every binary files differ in git of an image or layout which you would most certainly want toa Version Control System VCS is a very wise thing to use.

It allows you to revert files back to a previous state, revert the entire project back to a previous state, compare changes over time, see who last modified something that might be causing a problem, who introduced an issue and when, and more.

Using a VCS also generally means that if you screw things up or lose files, you can easily recover. In addition, you get all this for very little overhead. Local Version Control Systems Many people's version-control method of choice is to copy files into another directory perhaps a time-stamped directory, if they're clever.

This approach is very common because it is so simple, but it is also incredibly error prone. It is easy to forget which directory you're in and accidentally write to the wrong file or copy over files you don't mean to. If you replace an image in your project and run git diffyou see something like this: You can easily see that the file size and image dimensions have both changed. The next time you check out this file, Git injects the SHA-1 of the blob: Here is a small Ruby script that does that: If you commit those changes and check out the file again, you see the keyword properly substituted: Tue Apr 21 Exporting Your Repository Git attribute data also allows you to do some interesting things when exporting an archive of your project.

You binary files differ in git add the following line to your Git attributes file: When you run git archivethe contents of the archived file will look like this: The substitutions can include for example the commit message and any git notesand git log can do simple word wrapping: Merge Strategies You can also use Git attributes to tell Git to use different merge strategies for specific files in your project.

You can set up an attribute like this: In this case, database.

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A gitattributes file is a simple text file that gives attributes to pathnames. That is, a pattern followed by an attributes list, separated by whitespaces. Leading and trailing whitespaces are ignored. Lines that begin with are ignored. Patterns that begin with a double quote are quoted in C style. When the pattern matches the path in question, the attributes listed on the line are given to the path.

The path has the attribute with special value "true"; this is specified by listing only the name of the attribute in the attribute list. The path has the attribute with special value "false"; this is specified by listing the name of the attribute prefixed with a dash - in the attribute list. No pattern matches the path, and nothing says if the path has or does not have the attribute, the attribute for the path is said to be Unspecified.

When more than one pattern matches the path, a later line overrides an earlier line. This overriding is done per attribute. The rules by which the pattern matches paths are the same as in. Finally global and system-wide files are considered they have the lowest precedence. If you wish to affect only a single repository i. Attributes which should be version-controlled and distributed to other repositories i.

Attributes that should affect all repositories for a single user should be placed in a file specified by the core. Sometimes you would need to override a setting of an attribute for a path to Unspecified state. This can be done by listing the name of the attribute prefixed with an exclamation point! Certain operations by Git can be influenced by assigning particular attributes to a path. Currently, the following operations are attributes-aware. These attributes affect how the contents stored in the repository are copied to the working tree files when commands such as git checkout and git merge run.

They also affect how Git stores the contents you prepare in the working tree in the repository upon git add and git commit. This attribute enables and controls end-of-line normalization. When a text file is normalized, its line endings are converted to LF in the repository. To control what line ending style is used in the working directory, use the eol attribute for a single file and the core.

Setting the text attribute on a path enables end-of-line normalization and marks the path as a text file. End-of-line conversion takes place without guessing the content type. Unsetting the text attribute on a path tells Git not to attempt any end-of-line conversion upon checkin or checkout. When text is set to "auto", the path is marked for automatic end-of-line conversion. If Git decides that the content is text, its line endings are converted to LF on checkin.

When the file has been committed with CRLF, no conversion is done. If the text attribute is unspecified, Git uses the core. This attribute sets a specific line-ending style to be used in the working directory.

It enables end-of-line conversion without any content checks, effectively setting the text attribute. Note that setting this attribute on paths which are in the index with CRLF line endings may make the paths to be considered dirty. Adding the path to the index again will normalize the line endings in the index. This setting forces Git to normalize line endings for this file on checkin and convert them to CRLF when the file is checked out.

While Git normally leaves file contents alone, it can be configured to normalize line endings to LF in the repository and, optionally, to convert them to CRLF when files are checked out.

If you simply want to have CRLF line endings in your working directory regardless of the repository you are working with, you can set the config variable "core.

This does not force normalization of text files, but does ensure that text files that you introduce to the repository have their line endings normalized to LF when they are added, and that files that are already normalized in the repository stay normalized. If you want to ensure that text files that any contributor introduces to the repository have their line endings normalized, you can set the text attribute to "auto" for all files.

The attributes allow a fine-grained control, how the line endings are converted. Here is an example that will make Git normalize.

If any files that should not be normalized show up in git status , unset their text attribute before running git add -u. For "true", Git rejects irreversible conversions; for "warn", Git only prints a warning but accepts an irreversible conversion. The safety triggers to prevent such a conversion done to the files in the work tree, but there are a few exceptions. To catch potential problems early, safety triggers. A filter attribute can be set to a string value that names a filter driver specified in the configuration.

A filter driver consists of a clean command and a smudge command, either of which can be left unspecified. Upon checkout, when the smudge command is specified, the command is fed the blob object from its standard input, and its standard output is used to update the worktree file. Similarly, the clean command is used to convert the contents of worktree file upon checkin.

By default these commands process only a single blob and terminate. If a long running process filter is configured then it always takes precedence over a configured single blob filter. See section below for the description of the protocol used to communicate with a process filter. One use of the content filtering is to massage the content into a shape that is more convenient for the platform, filesystem, and the user to use.

For this mode of operation, the key phrase here is "more convenient" and not "turning something unusable into usable". In other words, the intent is that if someone unsets the filter driver definition, or does not have the appropriate filter program, the project should still be usable.

Another use of the content filtering is to store the content that cannot be directly used in the repository e. These two filters behave differently, and by default, a filter is taken as the former, massaging the contents into more convenient shape. A missing filter driver definition in the config, or a filter driver that exits with a non-zero status, is not an error but makes the filter a no-op passthru. You can declare that a filter turns a content that by itself is unusable into a usable content by setting the filter.

Whenever the clean filter is changed, the repo should be renormalized: Then you would define a "filter. See the section on merging below. The "indent" filter is well-behaved in this regard: In this case, the lack of a smudge filter means that the clean filter must accept its own output without modifying it. If a filter must succeed in order to make the stored contents usable, you can declare that the filter is required , in the configuration:.

A filter might use this in keyword substitution. Depending on the version that is being filtered, the corresponding file on disk may not exist, or may have different contents. So, smudge and clean commands should not try to access the file on disk, but only act as filters on the content provided to them on standard input. If the filter command a string value is defined via filter. When Git encounters the first file that needs to be cleaned or smudged, it starts the filter and performs the handshake.

In the handshake, the welcome message sent by Git is "git-filter-client", only version 2 is suppported, and the supported capabilities are "clean", "smudge", and "delay".

The list will contain at least the filter command based on the supported capabilities and the pathname of the file to filter relative to the repository root. Right after the flush packet Git sends the content split in zero or more pkt-line packets and a flush packet to terminate content. Please note, that the filter must not send any response before it received the content and the final flush packet. If the filter does not experience problems then the list must contain a "success" status.

Right after these packets the filter is expected to send the content in zero or more pkt-line packets and a flush packet at the end. The filter can change the status in the second list or keep the status as is with an empty list.

Please note that the empty list must be terminated with a flush packet regardless. If the result content is empty then the filter is expected to respond with a "success" status and a flush packet to signal the empty content.

In case the filter cannot or does not want to process the content, it is expected to respond with an "error" status. If the filter experiences an error during processing, then it can send the status "error" after the content was partially or completely sent. In case the filter cannot or does not want to process the content as well as any future content for the lifetime of the Git process, then it is expected to respond with an "abort" status at any point in the protocol.

However, Git sets its exit code according to the filter. If the filter dies during the communication or does not adhere to the protocol then Git will stop the filter process and restart it with the next file that needs to be processed.

Depending on the filter. If the filter supports the "delay" capability, then Git can send the flag "can-delay" after the filter command and pathname. This flag denotes that the filter can delay filtering the current blob e.

If Git sends this command, then the filter is expected to return a list of pathnames representing blobs that have been delayed earlier and are now available. The list must be terminated with a flush packet followed by a "success" status that is also terminated with a flush packet.

If no blobs for the delayed paths are available, yet, then the filter is expected to block the response until at least one blob becomes available. The filter can tell Git that it has no more delayed blobs by sending an empty list. As soon as the filter responds with an empty list, Git stops asking. All blobs that Git has not received at this point are considered missing and will result in an error. After Git received the pathnames, it will request the corresponding blobs again.

These requests contain a pathname and an empty content section. The filter is expected to respond with the smudged content in the usual way as explained above. Please note that you cannot use an existing filter.