Git file permissions on Windows

Cover Image for Git file permissions on Windows
Matheus Mello
Matheus Mello
published a few days ago. updated a few hours ago

📝 Git File Permissions on Windows: A Guide to Understanding and Resolving Issues 🖥🤔

Are you feeling confused about file permissions in Git? 🤔 Don't worry, you're not alone! Many developers encounter issues when dealing with Git file permissions on Windows. In this blog post, we will explore common problems, provide easy solutions, and empower you to overcome these challenges with confidence! Let's dive in! 💪💻

The Mystery of Mode Changes 😱

Let's start by examining the context that inspired this blog post. The code snippet you shared shows output from the git diff --summary command. It indicates a change in file modes, specifically from 100644 to 100755.

But what do these numbers mean? 🤷‍♀️ In Git, the file mode specifies the permissions for a file.

  • 100644: Represents normal files with read and write permissions for the owner and read-only permissions for others.

  • 100755: Represents executable files with read, write, and execute permissions for the owner, and read and execute permissions for others.

Understanding the Challenge 🔍

After forking a repository and performing a merge, you noticed the file mode changes in the output. However, attempts to modify file permissions do not seem to affect the git diff results. This raises the perplexing question: why aren't the file permissions updating as expected? 🤔

The Windows Factor 🪟

The issue you are facing is specific to Windows. Unlike Unix-based systems, Windows does not natively support executing files based on their file modes. Instead, Git on Windows uses a different approach to handle file permissions.

Git for Windows relies on the core.filemode configuration setting to determine whether to track file permissions. By default, this setting is enabled, meaning that Git will track and report changes in file modes.

Resolving the Issue 💡

To address the problem and ensure that file mode changes are considered by Git on Windows, follow these simple steps:

  1. Open the command prompt or Git Bash.

  2. Navigate to your repository by using the cd command.

  3. Run the following command to disable the core.filemode setting:

git config core.filemode false
  1. Verify that the setting has been disabled by running:

git config core.filemode

The output should display false, indicating that Git will no longer track file mode changes.

By disabling this setting, Git will no longer report file mode changes between branches, resulting in identical diffs for files with different modes.

🚨 Important Note: Disabling core.filemode may impact how Git handles file permission changes on other platforms. Consider this limitation if you work on a project that involves collaborators on different operating systems.

Engage and Share Your Experiences! 📣

We hope this guide has helped demystify Git file permissions on Windows and provided you with a solution to the issue you encountered. Now it's your turn to get involved! Share your experiences or ask any further questions in the comments section below. Let's build a supportive community and learn from one another! 👥📝

So go ahead, give it a try, and let us know how it worked for you! Happy coding! 💻💙

Disclaimer: The commands and instructions provided in this blog post are intended for educational purposes and assume you have a basic understanding of Git and the Windows operating system.

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