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Using git to work on a project across OS and machines

If you're working for a company/team that develops a product that can be used on Windows, OS X and Linux, then you will have to test the changes you make on all three platforms to see if things are working the way you intend them to.

I presume that you're using version control, I personally use git, to manage the code base for the project. Say you make changes to the code base on an OSX machine and everything looks fine so you push the changes to a branch. Now, you will want to look at the changes on a different OS to make sure that the changes are behaving well, which you can do using

 git checkout --track <remote>/<branch-name>

I hope you're familiar with  git checkout, which can be used to change to a different working branch or it can be used to remove changes made on a file on the current branch. The additional --track argument tells git to create a new branch from a remote branch, where the remote is usually set as origin. You're probably familiar with the -b argument which is used to create a new branch and move to it.

The above command might not work a 100% of the time. I'm still iffy on why it doesn't. I tried

 git pull origin master

before running the first command, thinking that I'll have to tell git that upstream branches have been updated. But it didn't work. Instead, this command did the trick

 git fetch origin

which seems to update all of the remote branches and tags.

Note : I used to create the code blocks but sadly, they aren't highlighted the way I expected them to be. And here are two references. If you're interested in exploring git further, I strongly recommend the first of the two references.

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