git add - Difference between "git add -A" and "git add ."

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Top 5 Answer for git add - Difference between "git add -A" and "git add ."

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96

This answer only applies to Git version 1.x. For Git version 2.x, see other answers.


Summary:

  • git add -A stages all changes

  • git add . stages new files and modifications, without deletions (on the current directory and its subdirectories).

  • git add -u stages modifications and deletions, without new files


Detail:

git add -A is equivalent to git add .; git add -u.

The important point about git add . is that it looks at the working tree and adds all those paths to the staged changes if they are either changed or are new and not ignored, it does not stage any 'rm' actions.

git add -u looks at all the already tracked files and stages the changes to those files if they are different or if they have been removed. It does not add any new files, it only stages changes to already tracked files.

git add -A is a handy shortcut for doing both of those.

You can test the differences out with something like this (note that for Git version 2.x your output for git add . git status will be different):

git init echo Change me > change-me echo Delete me > delete-me git add change-me delete-me git commit -m initial  echo OK >> change-me rm delete-me echo Add me > add-me  git status # Changed but not updated: #   modified:   change-me #   deleted:    delete-me # Untracked files: #   add-me  git add . git status  # Changes to be committed: #   new file:   add-me #   modified:   change-me # Changed but not updated: #   deleted:    delete-me  git reset  git add -u git status  # Changes to be committed: #   modified:   change-me #   deleted:    delete-me # Untracked files: #   add-me  git reset  git add -A git status  # Changes to be committed: #   new file:   add-me #   modified:   change-me #   deleted:    delete-me 
vote vote

80

Git Version 1.x

Command New Files Modified Files Deleted Files Description
git add -A ✔️ ✔️ ✔️ Stage all (new, modified, deleted) files
git add . ✔️ ✔️ Stage new and modified files only in current folder
git add -u ✔️ ✔️ Stage modified and deleted files only

Git Version 2.x

Command New Files Modified Files Deleted Files Description
git add -A ✔️ ✔️ ✔️ Stage all (new, modified, deleted) files
git add . ✔️ ✔️ ✔️ Stage all (new, modified, deleted) files in current folder
git add --ignore-removal . ✔️ ✔️ Stage new and modified files only
git add -u ✔️ ✔️ Stage modified and deleted files only

Long-form flags:

  • git add -A is equivalent to git add --all
  • git add -u is equivalent to git add --update

Further reading:

vote vote

73

With Git 2.0, git add -A is default: git add . equals git add -A ..

git add <path> is the same as "git add -A <path>" now, so that "git add dir/" will notice paths you removed from the directory and record the removal.
In older versions of Git, "git add <path>" ignored removals.

You can say "git add --ignore-removal <path>" to add only added or modified paths in <path>, if you really want to.

git add -A is like git add :/ (add everything from top git repo folder).
Note that git 2.7 (Nov. 2015) will allow you to add a folder named ":"!
See commit 29abb33 (25 Oct 2015) by Junio C Hamano (gitster).


Note that starting git 2.0 (Q1 or Q2 2014), when talking about git add . (current path within the working tree), you must use '.' in the other git add commands as well.

That means:

"git add -A ." is equivalent to "git add .; git add -u ."

(Note the extra '.' for git add -A and git add -u)

Because git add -A or git add -u would operate (starting git 2.0 only) on the entire working tree, and not just on the current path.

Those commands will operate on the entire tree in Git 2.0 for consistency with "git commit -a" and other commands. Because there will be no mechanism to make "git add -u" behave as if "git add -u .", it is important for those who are used to "git add -u" (without pathspec) updating the index only for paths in the current subdirectory to start training their fingers to explicitly say "git add -u ." when they mean it before Git 2.0 comes.

A warning is issued when these commands are run without a pathspec and when you have local changes outside the current directory, because the behaviour in Git 2.0 will be different from today's version in such a situation.

vote vote

61

From Charles' instructions, after testing my proposed understanding would be as follows:

# For the next commit $ git add .   # Add only files created/modified to the index and not those deleted $ git add -u  # Add only files deleted/modified to the index and not those created $ git add -A  # Do both operations at once, add to all files to the index 

This blog post might also be helpful to understand in what situation those commands may be applied: Removing Deleted Files from your Git Working Directory.

vote vote

60

Things changed with Git 2.0 (2014-05-28):

  • -A is now the default
  • The old behavior is now available with --ignore-removal.
  • git add -u and git add -A in a subdirectory without paths on the command line operate on the entire tree.

So for Git 2 the answer is:

  • git add . and git add -A . add new/modified/deleted files in the current directory
  • git add --ignore-removal . adds new/modified files in the current directory
  • git add -u . adds modified/deleted files in the current directory
  • Without the dot, add all files in the project regardless of the current directory.

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