Ben Gorman

Ben Gorman

Life's a garden. Dig it.


  1. Run this code. It initializes a new git repo inside a directory named yolo/
mkdir yolo
cd yolo
git init 

Don't forget to cd to the parent directory where you want the yolo/ directory to reside, before running the above code.

  1. Insert a text file named foo.txt inside yolo/

  2. Commit your changes with the message "first commit"

How do I create a text file from the command line?

Create an empty file using touch

touch foo.txt

Create a file with some text using echo

echo "Hello World" > foo.txt


git add .
git commit -m "first commit"


Working Directory

The explanation below assumes that your working directory is the root of the repo. In other words, if you run

bill@gates:~$ pwd

it should return

bill@gates:~$ pwd

Otherwise, you need to

bill@gates:~$ cd /path/to/yolo


Before we stage and commit the changes, let's review the state of our git repo using git status.

bill@gates:~$ git status
On branch main
No commits yet
Untracked files:
  (use "git add <file>..." to include in what will be committed)
nothing added to commit but untracked files present (use "git add" to track)

git status tells us that we have an untracked file - foo.txt.

Untracked Files

Untracked files are files that have been created within your repo's working directory but have not yet been added to therepository's tracking index using git add


Before we can commit our changes, we need to stage them with git add.

bill@gates:~$ git add foo.txt
bill@gates:~$ git add .

Let's run git status again..

bill@gates:~$ git status
On branch main
No commits yet
Changes to be committed:
  (use "git rm --cached <file>..." to unstage)
	new file:   foo.txt

Now, instead of "Untracked files:" we see "Changes to be committed:"


To commit our staged changes, we can use git commit.

bill@gates:~$ git commit -m "first commit" # (1)!
[main (root-commit) 88d8887] first commit
 1 file changed, 1 insertion(+)
 create mode 100644 foo.txt
  1. -m is an alias for the --message argument to git commit. It should be a meaningful message regarding your changes in the commit.

What if I don't want to specify a message?

Shame! 🔔 You should always provide a commit message!


Finally, let's check our commit history with git log.

bill@gates:~$ git log
commit 88d8887beaad2cfd37d04fb00f38c05077581057 (HEAD -> main)
Author: bill123 <[email protected]>
Date:   Sun Sep 11 13:09:50 2022 -0500
    first commit