without - gitignore not working

How to make Git “forget” about a file that was tracked but is now in.gitignore? (14)

There is a file that was being tracked by git, but now the file is on the .gitignore list.

However, that file keeps showing up in git status after it's edited. How do you force git to completely forget about it?

Use this when:

1. You want to untrack a lot of files, or

2. You updated your gitignore file

Source link: http://www.codeblocq.com/2016/01/Untrack-files-already-added-to-git-repository-based-on-gitignore/

Let’s say you have already added/committed some files to your git repository and you then add them to your .gitignore; these files will still be present in your repository index. This article we will see how to get rid of them.

Step 1: Commit all your changes

Before proceeding, make sure all your changes are committed, including your .gitignore file.

Step 2: Remove everything from the repository

To clear your repo, use:

git rm -r --cached .
  • rm is the remove command
  • -r will allow recursive removal
  • –cached will only remove files from the index. Your files will still be there.

The rm command can be unforgiving. If you wish to try what it does beforehand, add the -n or --dry-run flag to test things out.

Step 3: Re add everything

git add .

Step 4: Commit

git commit -m ".gitignore fix"

Your repository is clean :)

Push the changes to your remote to see the changes effective there as well.

What didn't work for me

(Under Linux), I wanted to use the posts here suggesting the ls-files --ignored --exclude-standard | xargs git rm -r --cached approach. However, (some of) the files to be removed had an embedded newline/LF/\n in their names. Neither of the solutions:

git ls-files --ignored --exclude-standard | xargs -d"\n" git rm --cached
git ls-files --ignored --exclude-standard | sed 's/.*/"&"/' | xargs git rm -r --cached

cope with this situation (get errors about files not found).

So I offer

git ls-files -z --ignored --exclude-standard | xargs -0 git rm -r --cached

This uses the -z argument to ls-files, and the -0 argument to xargs to cater safely/correctly for "nasty" characters in filenames.

In the manual page git-ls-files(1), it states:

When -z option is not used, TAB, LF, and backslash characters in pathnames are represented as \t, \n, and \\, respectively.

so I think my solution is needed if filenames have any of these characters in them.

EDIT: I have been asked to add that --- like any git rm command --- this must be followed by a commit to make the removals permanent, e.g. git commit -am "Remove ignored files".

.gitignore will prevent untracked files from being added (without an add -f) to the set of files tracked by git, however git will continue to track any files that are already being tracked.

To stop tracking a file you need to remove it from the index. This can be achieved with this command.

git rm --cached <file>

The removal of the file from the head revision will happen on the next commit.

This is no longer an issue in the latest git (v2.17.1 at the time of writing).

The .gitignore finally ignores tracked-but-deleted files. You can test this for yourself by running the following script. The final git status statement should report "nothing to commit".

# Create empty repo
mkdir gitignore-test
cd gitignore-test
git init

# Create a file and commit it
echo "hello" > file
git add file
git commit -m initial

# Add the file to gitignore and commit
echo "file" > .gitignore
git add .gitignore
git commit -m gitignore

# Remove the file and commit
git rm file
git commit -m "removed file"

# Reintroduce the file and check status.
# .gitignore is now respected - status reports "nothing to commit".
echo "hello" > file
git status

Do the following steps serially,you will be fine.

1.remove the mistakenly added files from the directory/storage. You can use "rm -r"(for linux) command or delete them by browsing the directories.

2.add the files / directories to gitignore file now and save it.

3.now remove them from git cache by using these commands (if there are more than one directory, remove them one by one by repeatedly issuing this command)

git rm -r --cached path-to-those-files

4.now do a commit and push, use these commands. This will remove those files from git remote and make git stop tracking those files.

git add .
git commit -m "removed unnecessary files from git"
git push origin

I accomplished this by using git filter-branch. The exact command I used was taken from the man page:

WARNING: this will delete the file from your entire history

git filter-branch --index-filter 'git rm --cached --ignore-unmatch filename' HEAD

This command will recreate the entire commit history, executing git rm before each commit and so will get rid of the specified file. Don't forget to back it up before running the command as it will be lost.

I liked JonBrave's answer but I have messy enough working directories that commit -a scares me a bit, so here's what I've done:

git config --global alias.exclude-ignored '!git ls-files -z --ignored --exclude-standard | xargs -0 git rm -r --cached && git ls-files -z --ignored --exclude-standard | xargs -0 git stage && git stage .gitignore && git commit -m "new gitignore and remove ignored files from index"'

breaking it down:

git ls-files -z --ignored --exclude-standard | xargs -0 git rm -r --cached 
git ls-files -z --ignored --exclude-standard | xargs -0 git stage 
git stage .gitignore 
git commit -m "new gitignore and remove ignored files from index"
  • remove ignored files from index
  • stage .gitignore and the files you just removed
  • commit

I think, that maybe git can't totally forget about file because of its conception (section "Snapshots, Not Differences").

This problem is absent, for example, when using CVS. CVS stores information as a list of file-based changes. Information for CVS is a set of files and the changes made to each file over time.

But in Git every time you commit, or save the state of your project, it basically takes a picture of what all your files look like at that moment and stores a reference to that snapshot. So, if you added file once, it will always be present in that snapshot.

These 2 articles were helpful for me:

git assume-unchanged vs skip-worktree and How to ignore changes in tracked files with Git

Basing on it I do the following, if file is already tracked:

git update-index --skip-worktree <file>

From this moment all local changes in this file will be ignored and will not go to remote. If file is changed on remote, conflict will occure, when git pull. Stash won't work. To resolve it, copy file content to the safe place and follow these steps:

git update-index --no-skip-worktree <file>
git stash
git pull 

File content will be replaced by the remote content. Paste your changes from safe place to file and perform again:

git update-index --skip-worktree <file>

If everyone, who works with project, will perform git update-index --skip-worktree <file>, problems with pull should be absent. This solution is OK for configurations files, when every developer has their own project configuration.

It is not very convenient to do this every time, when file has been changed on remote, but can protect it from overwriting by remote content.

If you don't want to use the CLI and are working on Windows, a very simple solution is to use TortoiseGit, it has the "Delete (keep local)" Action in the menu which works fine.

In case of already committed DS_Store:

find . -name .DS_Store -print0 | xargs -0 git rm --ignore-unmatch

Ignore them by:

echo ".DS_Store" >> ~/.gitignore_global
echo "._.DS_Store" >> ~/.gitignore_global
echo "**/.DS_Store" >> ~/.gitignore_global
echo "**/._.DS_Store" >> ~/.gitignore_global
git config --global core.excludesfile ~/.gitignore_global

Finally, make a commit!

The BFG is specifically designed for removing unwanted data like big files or passwords from Git repos, so it has a simple flag that will remove any large historical (not-in-your-current-commit) files: '--strip-blobs-bigger-than'

$ java -jar bfg.jar --strip-blobs-bigger-than 100M

If you'd like to specify files by name, you can do that too:

$ java -jar bfg.jar --delete-files *.mp4

The BFG is 10-1000x faster than git filter-branch, and generally much easier to use - check the full usage instructions and examples for more details.

Source: https://confluence.atlassian.com/bitbucket/reduce-repository-size-321848262.html

The answer from Matt Fear was the most effective IMHO. The following is just a PowerShell script for those in windows to only remove files from their git repo that matches their exclusion list.

# Get files matching exclusionsfrom .gitignore
# Excluding comments and empty lines
$ignoreFiles =  gc .gitignore | ?{$_ -notmatch  "#"} |  ?{$_ -match  "\S"} | % {
                    $ignore = "*" + $_ + "*"
                    (gci -r -i $ignore).FullName
$ignoreFiles = $ignoreFiles| ?{$_ -match  "\S"}

# Remove each of these file from Git 
$ignoreFiles | % { git rm $_}

git add .

move it out, commit, then move it back in. This has worked for me in the past. There is probably a 'gittier' way to accomplish this.

git ls-files --ignored --exclude-standard -z | xargs -0 git rm --cached
git commit -am "Remove ignored files"

This takes the list of the ignored files and removes them from the index, then commits the changes.