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Updated: July 2014

git-merge-file (1)


git-merge-file - way file merge


git merge-file [-L <current-name> [-L <base-name> [-L <other-name>]]]
[--ours|--theirs|--union] [-p|--stdout] [-q|--quiet] [--marker-size=<n>]
<current-file> <base-file> <other-file>


Git Manual                                      GIT-MERGE-FILE(1)

     git-merge-file - Run a three-way file merge

     git merge-file [-L <current-name> [-L <base-name> [-L <other-name>]]]
             [--ours|--theirs|--union] [-p|--stdout] [-q|--quiet] [--marker-size=<n>]
             <current-file> <base-file> <other-file>

     git merge-file incorporates all changes that lead from the
     <base-file> to <other-file> into <current-file>. The result
     ordinarily goes into <current-file>. git merge-file is
     useful for combining separate changes to an original.
     Suppose <base-file> is the original, and both <current-file>
     and <other-file> are modifications of <base-file>, then git
     merge-file combines both changes.

     A conflict occurs if both <current-file> and <other-file>
     have changes in a common segment of lines. If a conflict is
     found, git merge-file normally outputs a warning and
     brackets the conflict with lines containing <<<<<<< and
     >>>>>>> markers. A typical conflict will look like this:

         <<<<<<< A
         lines in file A
         lines in file B
         >>>>>>> B

     If there are conflicts, the user should edit the result and
     delete one of the alternatives. When --ours, --theirs, or
     --union option is in effect, however, these conflicts are
     resolved favouring lines from <current-file>, lines from
     <other-file>, or lines from both respectively. The length of
     the conflict markers can be given with the --marker-size

     The exit value of this program is negative on error, and the
     number of conflicts otherwise. If the merge was clean, the
     exit value is 0.

     git merge-file is designed to be a minimal clone of RCS
     merge; that is, it implements all of RCS merge's
     functionality which is needed by git(1).

     -L <label>
         This option may be given up to three times, and
         specifies labels to be used in place of the
         corresponding file names in conflict reports. That is,
         git merge-file -L x -L y -L z a b c generates output

Git          Last change: 02/22/2012                    1

Git Manual                                      GIT-MERGE-FILE(1)

         that looks like it came from files x, y and z instead of
         from files a, b and c.

         Send results to standard output instead of overwriting

         Quiet; do not warn about conflicts.

     --ours, --theirs, --union
         Instead of leaving conflicts in the file, resolve
         conflicts favouring our (or their or both) side of the

     git merge-file README README.upstream
         combines the changes of and README.upstream
         since README, tries to merge them and writes the result

     git merge-file -L a -L b -L c tmp/a123 tmp/b234 tmp/c345
         merges tmp/a123 and tmp/c345 with the base tmp/b234, but
         uses labels a and c instead of tmp/a123 and tmp/c345.

     Part of the git(1) suite

     See attributes(5) for descriptions of the following

     |Availability   | developer/versioning/git |
     |Stability      | Uncommitted              |
     This software was built from source available at  The original
     community source was downloaded from  http://git-

     Further information about this software can be found on the
     open source community website at

Git          Last change: 02/22/2012                    2