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Creating a Happy Git Environment on OS X

Creating a Happy Git Environment on OS X

Step 1: Install Git

brew install git bash-completion

Configure things:

git config --global "Your Name"
git config --global ""
git config --global checkout
git config --global apply.whitespace nowarn

Setup an SSH key


Hit return a couple of times -- leave password blank if you want.

cat ~/.ssh/ | pbcopy

Paste that code into your settings page on your repository host(s).

Get happy Git colors. Paste the following into your ~/.gitconfig file:

	branch = auto
	diff = auto
	status = auto
[color "branch"]
	current = yellow reverse
	local = yellow
	remote = green
[color "diff"]
	meta = yellow bold
	frag = magenta bold
	old = red bold
	new = green bold
[color "status"]
	added = yellow
	changed = green
	untracked = cyan

Create a ~/.gitexcludes file and paste in this:


There, now you don't have to ignore that every time.

Bash Fanciness

Add the following to your ~/.bash_profile or ~/.bashrc:

source /usr/local/git/contrib/completion/git-completion.bash
export PS1='[\u@mbp \w$(__git_ps1)]\$ '

That will add tab auto-completion for Git branches, display the current branch on your prompt, and show a '*' after the branch name if there are unstaged changes in the repository, and a '+' if there are staged (but uncommitted) changes. It will look something like this:

[user@computer ~/Sites/ (master*)]$ 


If you want to have a different email address for a particular project (a personal project on your work computer, perhaps?), just run this command inside that project's folder:

git config ""

It's the same command as before, this time just omitting the --global.



trey commented May 18, 2012

former location

This is a Solutions Log post.

I'm not sure these bits are still needed:

git config --global github.user [your_username]
git config --global github.token [your_token]

Mine works fine without them. Also see ("Set your GitHub token").


trey commented May 19, 2012

Thanks, @geoffalday! I removed that bit.

The checkout appears to be unnecessary, at least on my install of via Homebrew (brew install git). It's the only alias that's there by default.

Also, thanks for this! It has been a big help and I've used it a bunch of times while setting up new systems.

Oh, also, when installing git via Homebrew (brew install git) and using the git in /usr/local/bin, the bash completion line in the Bash Fanciness section should be changed from:

source /usr/local/git/contrib/completion/git-completion.bash


source /usr/local/etc/bash_completion.d/git-completion.bash

pkshiu commented Jul 9, 2013

I am on OSX 10.8.2
I needed to source to get the "show branch" to work, i.e. add this to your .bashrc or .bash_profile:

source /usr/local/git/contrib/completion/

On 10.9 / Xcode 5.0.1, Xcode's git has moved to inside So if you're using that:

source /Applications/
source /Applications/
export PS1='\u@\h:\w$(__git_ps1)$ '

dacook commented May 2, 2014

Might need to tell Git to use your .gitexcludes file, like this
git config --global core.excludesfile ~/.gitexcludes

Should be
export PS1='[\u@\h \w$(__git_ps1)]$ '

If you get an error like this:

-bash: __git_ps1: command not found

replace the following source /usr/local/etc/bash_completion.d/git-completion.bash
with source /usr/local/etc/bash_completion.d/

That fixed the issue for me (mac yosemite 10.10.2)

My version of git seemed to be missing git-completion.bash entirely. Here's the direct link to the contents of that file, you can place it anywhere

Lanik42 commented Jul 3, 2015

to find the location of the git-prompt or git-completion (none of the paths listed here were correct for me), use locate git-completion and locate git-prompt - locate may not be configured at first, but it tells you how to do so.

this is also nice: brew install bash-git-prompt to setup a clever prompt.

for mac 10.10.5 add aboce code to ~/.profile

@funkyfuture good suggestion. For the install, brew install is not enough. See for the complete install procedure.


My version of git seemed to be missing git-completion.bash entirely. Here's the direct link to the contents of that file, you can place it anywhere

this file have no __git_ps1 function too.

I could not set up this thing.

forgive me for imposing, however, I'm running into difficulties. currently running 10.11.5 el captain

in terminal:

-bash: /Users/CheezeDigital/.git_completion: No such file or directory
-bash: /Users/CheezeDigital/.git-completion.bash: No such file or directory

though in .bash_profile:

source ~/.git_completion
source ~/
export PS1='\W$(__git_ps1 "(%s)")$'

if you have a minute, mind shedding some lite?

again, forgive me for imposing on this thread..

@cheezedigital You'll need to download the git completion file from here: and install it to the location your script is looking for it.

derwiki commented Jun 16, 2016

@cheezedigital or, if you have Xcode installed, you can add these two lines to your ~/.bash_profile:

. /Applications/
. /Applications/

niderhoff commented Jun 30, 2016 edited

On El Capitan the git-completion/prompt files might be in /Library/Developer/CommandLineTools/usr/share/git-core/

RE: sourcing git-completion.bash, I used a more elegant solution (IMHO)

if [ -f `brew --prefix`/etc/bash_completion ]; then
  . `brew --prefix`/etc/bash_completion

macjules commented Jul 24, 2016 edited

@FrontendFed even more slightly elegant:

if [ -f $(brew --prefix)/etc/bash_completion ]; then
   . $(brew --prefix)/etc/bash_completion

veganista commented Jul 27, 2016 edited

Add a bit of colour to the prompt

screen-shot-2016-07-27-at-10 03 42

YELLOW="\[$(tput setaf 3)\]"
RESET="\[$(tput sgr0)\]"

PS1="\h:\W \u\$(__git_ps1 \" ${YELLOW}(%s)${RESET} \")\$ "

I've gone for yellow here but you can change the number here YELLOW="\[$(tput setaf 3)\]" from 0 - 6.

Hi ,

I am getting an extra "[" at the start of each line in terminal. Please see below.

[Harerams-MacBook-Air:demoapp hareramrai (master *) $ 
[Harerams-MacBook-Air:demoapp hareramrai (master *) $

Please help me to remove it .

Another way to incorporate bash_completion and git-prompt

if [ -f $(brew --prefix)/etc/bash_completion ]; then
    source $(brew --prefix)/etc/bash_completion.d/git-completion.bash
    source $(brew --prefix)/etc/bash_completion.d/
export PS1='[\u@mbp \w$(__git_ps1)]\$ '

vklogin commented Oct 17, 2016

Above comments were very useful to get this working. In addition, the colors show up properly on the command line once I read the comments and used below:
PROMPT_COMMAND='__git_ps1 "\u@\h:\w" "\$ "'

@twodayslate your solution works on Sierra. thanks

onpaws commented Feb 8, 2017 edited

Thanks @trey and @twodayslate and others.

I was additionally able to setup a color bash prompt by adding
GIT_PS1_SHOWCOLORHINTS=true to .bash_profile
and exporting PROMPT_COMMAND instead of PS1

This is my preferred PS1: PS1='\n\[\033[32m\]\u@\h\[\033[00m\]:\[\033[34m\]\w\[\033[31m\]$(__git_ps1)\[\033[00m\]\n\$ '

hos4m commented Feb 17, 2017

Thanks for this.

thdatnguyen commented Feb 28, 2017 edited

so the best solution for me to add color is in .bash_proflie, I add:

if which rbenv > /dev/null; then eval "$(rbenv init -)"; fi
if which rbenv > /dev/null; then eval "$(rbenv init -)"; fi

source /Applications/
source /Applications/


export PS1='\n[\033[32m]\u@\h[\033[00m]:[\033[34m]\w[\033[31m]$(__git_ps1)[\033[00m]\n$ '

Thanks for all of advise!

prkirby commented Mar 4, 2017

You rock.

nuboat commented Mar 14, 2017


lazlyhu commented May 8, 2017

@trey, you should use \h instead hardcoded hostname on bash config :)

export PS1='[\u@\h \w$(__git_ps1)]\$ '

Thank you all! @fightbulc's answer worked for me (OS X 10.11.6).

nicregez commented Jul 7, 2017

brew bash-completion-1.3_2.sierra.bottle.tar.gz says:

Add the following line to your ~/.bash_profile:
  [ -f /usr/local/etc/bash_completion ] && . /usr/local/etc/bash_completion

You might want to replace the line

source /usr/local/git/contrib/completion/git-completion.bash

with the above.

@niderhoff Thanks! I found them in /Library/Developer/CommandLineTools/usr/share/git-core/ as well. I'm on MacOS Sierra.

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