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GitHub Fork and Pull Workflow – Finxter

In case you are unfamiliar with git and/or GitHub, it may be overwhelming navigating all of the totally different workflow fashions you should utilize so as to add code to a repository. I do know this sense properly, because it took me some time to get used to new workflows after getting used to the basic SVN (years in the past in College).

This publish will give attention to the widespread fork and pull workflow mannequin that’s utilized by many GitHub repositories. It can present the mandatory git instructions and a brief description for every step of the workflow, particularly for Git freshmen who could also be hesitant to contribute to GitHub.

💡 Definition: A repository is a central location that holds information. It’s principally used to retailer and handle code, paperwork, photographs, movies, and different information varieties. Repositories could be both public or non-public and are sometimes utilized by software program builders to retailer and collaborate on tasks.

Fork and Pull Workflow In a Nutshell

The “Fork & Pull” workflow is a solution to contribute modifications to an unique repository utilizing three simple steps:

  • Step 1: create a private copy (fork) of the repository,
  • Step 2: edit the fork, and
  • Step 3: submit a request (pull request) to the proprietor of the unique repository to merge your modifications.

Step 1: Create a Fork

💡 Definition: A fork is a replica of a repository. Forking a repository lets you freely experiment with modifications with out affecting the unique challenge. Forks are generally used to both suggest modifications to another person’s challenge or to make use of another person’s challenge as a place to begin to your personal thought.

Making a fork on GitHub is simple – simply click on the “Fork” button on the repository web page.

Right here’s how forking the TensorFlow repository appears to be like like — simple:

Step 2: Clone and Edit Fork

Upon getting your fork, you’ll be able to clone it to your native machine and edit it.

Right here’s the place you truly change or add code recordsdata, discover and take away bugs, write feedback for the code, or refactor every part.

💡 Definition: When you clone a Git repository, you basically create an similar copy. You clone to work by yourself native copy of the repository and sync modifications again to the unique repository. That is helpful for retaining your native copy updated with the most recent modifications and for contributing modifications again to the unique repository.

Step 3: Push Modifications to Fork and Carry out Pull Request

When you’re finished, you push your modifications again to the fork on GitHub.

💡 Definition: A Git push operation is the method of sending modifications from an area repository to a distant repository. The modifications are utilized to the distant repository. And your native repository is synchronized with the distant repository.

Lastly, you submit a pull request to the proprietor of the unique repository.

💡 Definition: A pull request is a request to merge a department into the principle department of a repository. It’s used to suggest modifications and request suggestions from different contributors, who can settle for or reject the modifications primarily based on their evaluate.

If there aren’t any merge conflicts, the proprietor can merely click on the “merge” button to simply accept your modifications.

Six Steps to Pull Request

To create a pull request, it’s essential to:

  1. Fork the repository on GitHub.
  2. Clone your fork to your workspace with the git clone command.
  3. Modify the code and commit the modifications to your native clone.
  4. Push your modifications to your distant fork on GitHub.
  5. Create a pull request on GitHub and anticipate the proprietor to merge or remark your modifications.
  6. If the proprietor suggests modifications, push them to your fork, and the pull request shall be up to date routinely.

What If A number of Devs Work In Parallel?

If a number of builders work in parallel on the identical repository, it could occur that they work on step 3 in parallel and attempt to push modifications to the distant fork on the identical time.

Right here’s my drawing of this state of affairs. 😆

Add the unique repository as a distant repository referred to as “upstream”:

git distant add upstream

Fetch all modifications from the upstream repository:

git fetch upstream

Change to the grasp department of your fork:

git checkout grasp

Merge modifications from the upstream repository into your fork:

git merge upstream/grasp

In case you are engaged on a number of options, you must isolate them from one another. To do that, create a separate department for every function.

  • Use the command git checkout -b BRANCHNAME to create and swap to a brand new department.
  • Add the department to the distant fork with git push --set-upstream origin BRANCHNAME.
  • To change between branches, use git checkout BRANCHNAME.
  • To create a pull request from a department, go to the GitHub web page of that department and click on the “pull request” button.

To replace a function department:

  1. Change to the function department: git checkout my-feature-branch
  2. Commit all modifications: git commit -m MESSAGE
  3. Replace the function department by rebasing it from the grasp department: git rebase grasp

Why I Wrote This

I wrote this brief tutorial to assist contributors to our real-world sensible challenge to construct a P2P social community for data dissemination that’s structured like a giant mind. Customers are neurons. Connections are synapses. Info Impulses unfold via neurons “firing” and journey over synapses in a decentralized method:

👉 Really useful: Peer Mind – A Decentralized P2P Social Community App

When you just like the tutorial and also you need to contribute to this open-source social community app, be at liberty to check out this workflow your self on this GitHub repository! ⤴️


The Fork and Pull Workflow is a well-liked collaboration mannequin used throughout software program growth.

On this workflow, a person forks a repository from an unique (=upstream) repository, then develops and maintains a separate copy of the codebase on their very own fork.

Customers can then make modifications to their very own model of the repository, commit them, and push them as much as their very own fork. If the person needs to contribute their modifications again to the upstream repository, they’ll then create a pull request. This permits the upstream maintainer to evaluate the modifications and decide if they need to be merged into the principle codebase.

The Fork and Pull Workflow is so well-liked for collaboration on a standard code base as a result of builders can work independently on the code and synchronize on the upstream repos in a well-structured and arranged method.

This workflow additionally advantages upstream maintainers, as they don’t should handle a number of contributions coming in from a number of sources.

👉 Really useful: Peer Mind – A Decentralized P2P Social Community App



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