Version Control with Git

Setting Up Git

Learning Objectives

  • Configure git the first time is used on a computer.
  • Understand the meaning of the --global configuration flag.

When we use Git on a new computer for the first time, we need to configure a few things. Here’s how Dracula sets up his new laptop:

$ git config --global "Vlad Dracula"
$ git config --global "vlad@tran.sylvan.ia"
$ git config --global color.ui "auto"

(Please use your own name and email address instead of Dracula’s.)

He also has to set his favorite text editor, following this table:

Editor Configuration command
nano $ git config --global core.editor "nano -w"
Text Wrangler $ git config --global core.editor "edit -w"
Sublime Text (Mac) $ git config --global core.editor "subl -n -w"
Sublime Text (Win) $ git config --global core.editor "'c:/program files/sublime text 2/sublime_text.exe' -w"
Notepad++ (Win) $ git config --global core.editor "'c:/program files (x86)/Notepad++/notepad++.exe' -multiInst -notabbar -nosession -noPlugin"
Kate (Linux) $ git config --global core.editor "kate"
Gedit (Linux) $ git config --global core.editor "gedit -s"

Git commands are written git verb, where verb is what we actually want it to do. In this case, we’re telling Git:

  • our name and email address,
  • to colorize output,
  • what our favorite text editor is, and
  • that we want to use these settings globally (i.e., for every project),

The four commands above only need to be run once: the flag --global tells Git to use the settings for every project on this computer.

You can check your settings at any time:

$ git config --list

You can change your configuration as many times as you want: just use the same commands to choose another editor or update your email address.