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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great coverage of Git
I've been using Git for my side projects for nearly a year now, based primarily on knowledge I scraped together through conference sessions, screen-casts and cheat sheets. This is how a lot of people seem to get started with Git, but at some point it becomes necessary to really understand how it's working and what some of the more advanced commands are for...
Published on March 19, 2010 by Kevin Rohrbaugh

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91 of 97 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Dives into the weeds and never manages to rise again
This book jumped into the weeds way too fast. Which is good and bad. The label "power user" is appealing and I see the merit in knowing internals. But not with source control. It's a tool. I want to be able to use it productively and quickly and not have to remember MORE THAN two dozen commands. I'm not afraid of branching or merging, but then again, I don't care...
Published on June 2, 2010 by I Feel Fine


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91 of 97 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Dives into the weeds and never manages to rise again, June 2, 2010
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This review is from: Version Control with Git: Powerful tools and techniques for collaborative software development (Paperback)
This book jumped into the weeds way too fast. Which is good and bad. The label "power user" is appealing and I see the merit in knowing internals. But not with source control. It's a tool. I want to be able to use it productively and quickly and not have to remember MORE THAN two dozen commands. I'm not afraid of branching or merging, but then again, I don't care how these branches and merges are represented as objects on the filesystem.

And that's the problem. This book starts with the assumption that you're interested in the details and will cherish an under-the-hood look. Actually, for me, I really don't care. The details are certain to change. I'm convinced I'll be throwing this book out in a few years because it's outdated. I wouldn't be surprised if Git's hyphenated low level command structure disappears in a few years making this book nearly unusable - these commands are more developer tools than user tools.

With all the negative stuff out of the way, the book does contain a lot of good information. It's easy to read. It hits on a few interesting ideas on managing git. I found no issue following along with the examples - all of them worked fine for me.
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45 of 47 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars I just want to get work done..., October 27, 2010
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This review is from: Version Control with Git: Powerful tools and techniques for collaborative software development (Paperback)
The author really knows his stuff. There's a lot of information on how git works. My problem is that I need to get work done. The book tells you how to create a git repository and add files to it. It doesn't do a good job explaining how to put a file back. That's the information I need.

I wish books like this would give you the basics first. Here's how you create a repository. Here's how you add files. Here's how you put a file back if you change or delete it.

That's my two cents.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great coverage of Git, March 19, 2010
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This review is from: Version Control with Git: Powerful tools and techniques for collaborative software development (Paperback)
I've been using Git for my side projects for nearly a year now, based primarily on knowledge I scraped together through conference sessions, screen-casts and cheat sheets. This is how a lot of people seem to get started with Git, but at some point it becomes necessary to really understand how it's working and what some of the more advanced commands are for.

This book was exactly the right next step for me, moving me from stumbling around in Git to really understanding it. The author accomplishes this by taking the time to cover Git internals and to build on your knowledge as the book progresses. At first, I resisted all the plumbing explanations, since I doubt I'll be contributing to Git itself, but after a chapter or two it becomes obvious that understanding what Git is doing internally is pretty important to understanding how to interact with it. Additionally, the internals are always explained from a layman's perspective and never get so nuanced that they distract from the topic area being covered.

The book is organized so that you slowly build up knowledge of how Git works, with many topic areas sort of split into a basic and advanced chapter. This was a bit annoying at first, but since the more advanced topics require you to understand other aspects of the tool first, it's necessary. As an example, you need to understand diffs, branching and merges before you can worry about patches, and you need to understand branching and merging before you can worry about remotes.

The book also ends with a decent overview of how to use Git with SVN, which is still pretty important given that a lot of organizations will be relying on SVN for quite some time. Unfortunately, this is one of the few areas that could have used a bit more coverage and seemed to lack the basic and advanced topic setup that worked so well for the rest of the book.

It also doesn't provide much in the way of best practices for employing Git, although I don't see this as a weakness. The closest it comes to recommending a strategy to use it with your team is to kind of sketch out how some very high-profile open source projects work with the tool, which is unlikely to directly apply. Fortunately, there's a lot of content on the Web that covers use cases, branching strategies and best practices, so you won't have trouble finding this information elsewhere. The author doesn't take an opinion on such topics, instead focusing on how to make Git do what you want once you've decided on how you want to use it.

In the end, I recommend this book to anybody who has decided that Git is going to be their DVCS and intends to read the book sequentially, cover to cover. If you're still trying to decide between Mercurial, Bazaar and Git, this is probably a lot more information than you want or require. If you're looking for a quick reference, then the progressive structure may leave you scratching your head when jumping around topic areas.

Once you settle on Git, and want to invest the time to build up the conceptual framework you'll need to succeed with it, this book won't disappoint.
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33 of 40 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent for all experience levels, September 9, 2009
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This review is from: Version Control with Git: Powerful tools and techniques for collaborative software development (Paperback)
Out of the current crop of distributed version control systems, Git is by far my least favorite. Unfortunately for me, out of the current crop of distributed version control systems, Git is the only one that I don't have to spend an hour chasing bizarre, nonsensical uncaught Python exceptions every time I upgrade, so it's the one I've been stuck gravitating toward.

Luckily, just about anything I don't like about Git can be customized out of existence, but up until now, figuring out how to go about doing this the right way has always been something of a guessing game. This book starts you off on the right foot and gives you the best practices you'll need to adopt in order to not make a fool of yourself, which is really all you can ever hope for.

Highly recommended to anyone who needs or wants to work with Git, even if you already know what you're doing.
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24 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars well written; easy to understand, July 14, 2009
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Richard Morin (San Bruno, CA, USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Version Control with Git: Powerful tools and techniques for collaborative software development (Paperback)
I found this book to be very well and carefully written. As a technical writer and editor, I'm extremely picky about copy errors, language usage, etc. I was pleasantly surprised to find almost no problems of this sort.

I also found the book remarkably easy to understand. Given the complex and esoteric nature of the topic matter, this is quite an accomplishment! In summary, I would recommend this book highly as an introduction and reference to Git.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best book available on git, almost perfect, December 31, 2009
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This review is from: Version Control with Git: Powerful tools and techniques for collaborative software development (Paperback)
This is absolutely the best book on git available, and even if you've used git before you'll learn something from it.

The first five chapters are perfect, and do an amazing job of explaining what the heck git is doing.

If there's anything wrong with the book, it starts to show up in chapter 6, which is where new concepts are referenced many chapters before they're explained (for example, all the sudden remote tracking branches show up 5 chapters before they're actually explained). Sometime's there's just no way around this - it's tough to untie all of the knots of git.

Expect to read chapters 6 (commits) and chapter 9 (merges) twice - ideally after you've read the whole book and have actually used git to manage a project with branches.

There's plenty to tighten up for a second edition, but it still gets five stars.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good read and overview of Git, March 11, 2010
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This review is from: Version Control with Git: Powerful tools and techniques for collaborative software development (Paperback)
I found the book easy to follow and feel that it gave me a complete view of the inner workings of Git. The graphs used throughout the book were also helpful in demonstrating Git concepts and behavior. After reading this book, I know enough to not only do some real damage, but perhaps repair a good portion as well.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Git Made Easy, January 29, 2011
This review is from: Version Control with Git: Powerful tools and techniques for collaborative software development (Paperback)
I've used many version control systems including SCCS, PVCS, CVS, SourceSafe and Subversion. A few years ago, I started using distributed version control, first with darcs, then Bazaar. I was never completely comfortable with either of them. Mercurial and Git on the other hand, just felt so much better, and after quite some time using both, I moved into the Git camp.

'Version Control with Git' takes you step by step through the basics of what Git is, how to install it, day-to-day use and on into more more complex topics. To me, one of Git's strong points is branching and merging. Detailed chapters on this subject help illuminate the process and make it as easy as possible.

Another great feature of Git is its ability to handle different types of workflow, including various approaches to repository management. Whether you choose to set up a centralized or distributed repository environment, or use multiple repositories, you'll find the how-to here.

For those still living with Subversion, a chapter describes how to set up Git to work with Subversion. This setup has come in handy for me as we use Subversion at the office and I can easily pull a git repository for work offsite. I can do whatever I want in the code and push my git repository changes back to the office without touching the centralized Subversion repository. This is extremely useful when the current state of my project would break the build upon Subversion checkin.

Whether you are just starting out with Git and would like lots of hands-on examples or you are already comfortable with Git and are looking for an excellent reference, get this Git book.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great for git users, March 3, 2011
This review is from: Version Control with Git: Powerful tools and techniques for collaborative software development (Paperback)
I have used git for quite a while and think it's a great tool that can do a lot for you. I frequently found myself wanting to do more complicated things than I new how to do, like write simple hooks and use branches effectively. This book is great for a user who is already somewhat familiar with git and wants to understand it better and take more advantage of the advanced capabilities that git offers. I found the description of the underlying object model really helpful in understanding what is going on when I run various commands. Knowing what your tool is doing and how it works helps you to use it more effectively, and this is a great book in that regard.

As other reviewers have mentioned, if you are brand new to git and just want to be able to run things, this may not be the book for you--a book like "Pragmatic Guide to Git" is probably better suited to your needs. This book, while giving examples like the simpler books, goes into more detail about the inner workings of git that you may not be interested in or may be over your head.

I also use this book as a reference when I forget how to use some of git's complicated functionality. It's certainly not a complete reference, but it's the closest I've seen outside of the man pages.

The one complaint I had about this book was that a significant percentage of the figures in the book were wrong. Some were obviously wrong to anyone reading the book, but others were more subtly wrong and could be confusing to one who doesn't realize that the figure is out of sync with the text. I would say that at least 20% and maybe as many as 40% of the figures have something wrong with them, at least in the printing that I have. But I still liked the book enough to give it 5 stars even with the problems with the figures (I probably would do 4.5 if I could).
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great overview of git, February 27, 2010
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This review is from: Version Control with Git: Powerful tools and techniques for collaborative software development (Paperback)
I've been using git for a few months, relying on co-workers' advice and web searches to find what I needed to know. I wanted a good book that could serve both as a textbook on git, as well as a reference manual for how to do common tasks. This book covers both. Reading the book teaches enough of how git operates to understand the "why" of what you do, and it's organized well enough to search for a command and read how to use it. It's taken residence on my desk at work close to my computer.

I'm glad I bought this one, and would do so again.
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