git_remote_branch 0.3 - Awesomeness for the masses

Awesomeness for the masses

git_remote_branch 0.3 has been released!

Previous releases were pretty much only usable by rubyists on OS X.

Works on my machine logo

No more. This release is mostly focused on making sure git_remote_branch works on a broader range of platforms. A few actual features squeaked in, but nothing big like introducing new commands.

If you don’t care about the details just type the following at your command-line.

sudo gem install git_remote_branch

And check the help

grb --help

If you encounter installation problems, refer to the readme.


git_remote_branch 0.3 has been tested with the following configurations:

  • OS X Leopard / Ruby 1.8.6 / Git and
  • OS X Leopard / Ruby 1.9.1 / Git and
  • Ubuntu Intrepid Ibex / Ruby 1.8.7 / Git
  • Windows XP / Ruby 1.8.6 / Git (the msys version)


Better track

Track now works even if you already have a local branch of the same name. It uses git config instead of branch —track in that case. The subtlety can be observed by running (from a git repository):

grb explain track master
grb explain track non_existent_branch

Force the use of a specific git executable

Set the environment variable GRB_GIT to point to it and grb will use this one for all its operations.


I’ve also worked quite a bit on the actual documentation. I used to be ashamed at the quality and availability of the documentation of git_remote_branch. At last I’ll be able to sleep at night :-)

git_remote_branch in a nutshell

I’ve rewritten the intro of the readme to be (hopefully) a bit clearer.

git_remote_branch is a simple command-line tool that makes it very easy to manipulate branches published in shared repositories.

It achieves this goal by sticking to a few principles:

  • keep grb’s commands extremely regular (they all look alike)
  • support aliases for commands
  • print all commands it runs on your behalf in red, so you eventually learn them

Another nice thing about git_remote_branch is that it can simply explain a command (print out all the corresponding git commands) instead of running them on your behalf.

Note: git_remote_branch assumes that the local and remote branches have the same name. Multiple remote repositories (or origins) are supported.

Documentation availability

The main readme is now available on the main grb page on rubyforge.

Documentation quality

I’ve added clearer information on getting grb to run in different kinds of situation, due to helpful feedback from Axelson and Glenn Rempe.

I’ve also added some information for playing with the code for git_remote_branch (test dependencies and so on). See the end of the readme.

Finally, I’ve updated the links section quite a bit:

News /category/git/git_remote_branch/
Bug tracker Lighthouse
Mailing list


I dare you to find a platform on which git_remote_branch doesn’t work :-)

If you do, please send me feedback through GitHub or via email. I’m using gmail and, as usual, I go by the handle of webmat.

Last note: the git_remote_branch gem on GitHub

Excerpt from the readme:

Note that the only stable version of the gem you should trust is the one from Rubyforge. The GitHub gem is a development gem. The GitHub gem WILL be rebuilt with the same version number, and other horrible things like that. If you use the GitHub version of git_remote_branch, children will die!

You’ve been warned.