Demystifying Git Fetch Everything You Need to Know - VaST ITES Inc
  • January 1, 2024
  • vastadmin
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Welcome to our guide on understanding the complexities of Git Fetch, a fundamental command for engineers working with Git. We will dig into the basic parts of Git Fetch, differentiate it from Git Pull, and how it integrates into Azure DevOps work processes. Whether you’re a seasoned engineer or new to version control systems, this post will upgrade how you might interpret how Git oversees remote and local data, guaranteeing effective collaboration and code management in your projects.

What is Git Fetch

The git fetch request downloads commit documents and refs from a local repository into your local repo. Fetch in Git means what you do when you want to see what every other individual has been managing. It also lets you perceive how the central history advanced, as in the svn update. However, it does not convince you to merge the changes into the repository. Git separates fetched content from local content that is already present thus it doesn’t influence your local improvement work. You can check the content that is fetched with the git checkout command. It is an exceptionally protected strategy to survey the commits before integrating them with the local repositories.

Git Fetch from Remote Branches - VaST ITES Inc

Git Fetch from remote branches

To understand how git fetch works, let’s understand the working of Git fetch from remote branches. In the background, in the repository’s ./.git/objects directory, Git stores all commits, local and remote. Git keeps remote and local branch commits unmistakably separate using branch refs. The git branch command will produce a list of the refs for the local branch, which are stored in the./.git/refs/heads/ directory. Coming up next is an illustration of git branch yield with some demo branch names.

git branch

Looking into the contents of the /.git/refs/heads/ the directory would show a similar output.

ls ./.git/refs/heads/

Remote branches are very much like local branches, with the exception of they map to commits from another person’s repository. Remote branches are prefixed by the remote they have a place with so you don’t stir them up with the local branches. Like local branches, Git additionally has refs for remote branches. Remote branch refs live in the ./.git/refs/controllers/ directory. The following example code shows the branches you could see after fetching a remote repo conveniently named remote-repo:

git branch -r
# origin/main
# origin/feature1
# origin/debug2
# remote-repo/main
# remote-repo/other-feature

Git Workflow: Fetch, Checkout, and Merge Remote Branches

The local branches we had previously examined are now prefixed with origin/. And the remote branches are now prefixed with remote-repo in this output. You can look at a remote branch very much like a local one, however this places you in a detached HEAD state (very much like checking out an old commit). You can consider them read-only branches. To see your remote branches pass the – r flag to the git branch command.

You can examine remote branches with the typical git checkout and git log commands. If you approve the changes a remote branch contains, you can merge it into a local branch with a typical git merge. Therefore, in contrast to SVN, synchronizing your local repository with a remote repository requires two steps: fetch, and then merge. The git pull command is a helpful shortcut for this cycle.

Git Fetch vs Pull: What is the difference between Git Fetch and Git Pull

Before we discuss the difference between Git Fetch and Git Pull, how about we look at their similarities? Both are utilized to download new information from a remote repository.

Because the remote data in your local repository is only a “snapshot,” downloading data is an essential step in your daily work. It’s simply basically as updated as the last time you expressly downloaded new data from the remote with “fetch” or “pull”. It’s imperative to remember this reality while investigating remote branches and commits!

Git Fetch

Git Fetch downloads new data from a remote repository. But it doesn’t integrate any of this new data into your working files. Fetch in Git is perfect for getting a new view of everything that occurred in a remote repository.

Because of it’s “harmless” nature, you can have confidence: fetch won’t ever manipulate, destroy, or screw up anything. This indicates that you can never have enough fetches.

Git Pull

Git pull is utilized in view of an alternate objective. For example, to refresh your current HEAD branch with the most recent changes from the remote server. This implies that pull not just downloads new data; it likewise straightforwardly integrates it into your ongoing working copy files. There are two effects of this:

A “merge conflict” can occur because “git pull” tries to combine your local changes with those from the remote server.

Like for the majority of different activities, it’s recommended to begin a “git pull” just with a clean working copy. This implies that you shouldn’t have any uncommitted local changes before you pull. Utilize Git’s Stash component to save your local changes temporarily.

Read more: Jenkins vs. Other CI/CD Tools: Making the Right Choice for your Project

Azure DevOps Fetch

Azure DevOps Fetch refers to a command or cycle inside Azure DevOps for retrieving or updating data, normally from a remote repository. With regards to DevOps, “fetch” has a connection with version control frameworks like Git, utilizing downloading content from a remote repository. In Azure DevOps, this could be essential for overseeing code repositories, automation scripts, or deployment.


In conclusion, any developer working with Git, particularly in a collaborative setting, should have the Git Fetch command as a fundamental tool in their arsenal. It is a safe and proficient method for remaining updated with changes in local repositories without modifying the local development work. Understanding the differentiation between Git Fetch and Git Pull is important for compelling version control management, as it guarantees that developers have the adaptability to review changes before integrating them into their local codebase. When integrated into work processes like Azure DevOps, Git Fetch plays an essential part in smoothing out development processes, empowering consistent collaboration, and keeping up with the integration of code repositories. Mastering Git Fetch and its subtleties further develops individual work process proficiency as well as contributes fundamentally to the progress of team-based programming development projects.

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