git status shows modifications, git checkout — <file> doesn't remove them

0 votes
asked Jan 6, 2010 by rbellamy

I would like to remove all changes to my working copy.
Running 'git status' shows files modified.
Nothing I do seems to remove these modifications.
E.g.:

rbellamy@PROMETHEUS /d/Development/rhino-etl (master)
$ git status
# On branch master
# Changed but not updated:
#   (use "git add <file>..." to update what will be committed)
#   (use "git checkout -- <file>..." to discard changes in working directory)
#
#       modified:   Rhino.Etl.Core/Enumerables/CachingEnumerable.cs
#       modified:   Rhino.Etl.Core/Pipelines/SingleThreadedPipelineExecuter.cs
#       modified:   Rhino.Etl.Tests/Rhino.Etl.Tests.csproj
#       modified:   Rhino.Etl.Tests/SingleThreadedPipelineExecuterTest.cs
#
no changes added to commit (use "git add" and/or "git commit -a")

rbellamy@PROMETHEUS /d/Development/rhino-etl (master)
$ git checkout -- Rhino.Etl.Core/Enumerables/CachingEnumerable.cs

rbellamy@PROMETHEUS /d/Development/rhino-etl (master)
$ git status
# On branch master
# Changed but not updated:
#   (use "git add <file>..." to update what will be committed)
#   (use "git checkout -- <file>..." to discard changes in working directory)
#
#       modified:   Rhino.Etl.Core/Enumerables/CachingEnumerable.cs
#       modified:   Rhino.Etl.Core/Pipelines/SingleThreadedPipelineExecuter.cs
#       modified:   Rhino.Etl.Tests/Rhino.Etl.Tests.csproj
#       modified:   Rhino.Etl.Tests/SingleThreadedPipelineExecuterTest.cs
#
no changes added to commit (use "git add" and/or "git commit -a")

rbellamy@PROMETHEUS /d/Development/rhino-etl (master)
$ git checkout `git ls-files -m`

rbellamy@PROMETHEUS /d/Development/rhino-etl (master)
$ git status
# On branch master
# Changed but not updated:
#   (use "git add <file>..." to update what will be committed)
#   (use "git checkout -- <file>..." to discard changes in working directory)
#
#       modified:   Rhino.Etl.Core/Enumerables/CachingEnumerable.cs
#       modified:   Rhino.Etl.Core/Pipelines/SingleThreadedPipelineExecuter.cs
#       modified:   Rhino.Etl.Tests/Rhino.Etl.Tests.csproj
#       modified:   Rhino.Etl.Tests/SingleThreadedPipelineExecuterTest.cs
#
no changes added to commit (use "git add" and/or "git commit -a")

rbellamy@PROMETHEUS /d/Development/rhino-etl (master)
$ git reset --hard HEAD
HEAD is now at 6c857e7 boo libraries updated to 2.0.9.2 and rhino.dsl.dll updated.

rbellamy@PROMETHEUS /d/Development/rhino-etl (master)
$ git status
# On branch master
# Changed but not updated:
#   (use "git add <file>..." to update what will be committed)
#   (use "git checkout -- <file>..." to discard changes in working directory)
#
#       modified:   Rhino.Etl.Core/Enumerables/CachingEnumerable.cs
#       modified:   Rhino.Etl.Core/Pipelines/SingleThreadedPipelineExecuter.cs
#       modified:   Rhino.Etl.Tests/Rhino.Etl.Tests.csproj
#       modified:   Rhino.Etl.Tests/SingleThreadedPipelineExecuterTest.cs
#
no changes added to commit (use "git add" and/or "git commit -a")

14 Answers

0 votes
answered Jan 6, 2010 by ikke

There are multiple problems the can cause this behaviour:

Line ending normalization

I've had these kinds of problems too. It comes down to git automatically converting crlf to lf. This is typically caused by mixed line endings in a single file. The file gets normalized in the index, but when git then denormalizes it again to diff it against the file in the working tree, the result is different.

But if you want to fix this, you should disable core.autocrlf, change all line endings to lf, and then enable it again. Or you can disable it altogether by doing:

git config --global core.autocrlf false

Instead of core.autocrlf, you can also consider using .gitattribute files. This way, you can make sure everyone using the repo uses the same normalization rules, preventing mixed line endings getting into the repository.

Also consider setting core.safecrlf to warn if you want git to warn you when a non-reversible normalization would be performed.

The git manpages say this:

CRLF conversion bears a slight chance of corrupting data. autocrlf=true will convert CRLF to LF during commit and LF to CRLF during checkout. A file that contains a mixture of LF and CRLF before the commit cannot be recreated by git. For text files this is the right thing to do: it corrects line endings such that we have only LF line endings in the repository. But for binary files that are accidentally classified as text the conversion can corrupt data.

Case-insensitive file systems

On case-insensitive filesystems, when the same filename with different casing is in the repository, git tries to checkout both, but only one ends up on the file system. When git tries to compare the second one, it would compare it to the wrong file.

The solution would either be switching to a non-case insensitive filesystem, but this in most cases is not feasible or renaming and committing one of the files on another filesystem.

0 votes
answered Jan 6, 2012 by martin-neal

For future people having this problem: Having filemode changes can also have the same symptoms. git config core.filemode false will fix it.

0 votes
answered Jan 13, 2012 by dpiskyulev

Having consistent line endings is a good thing. For example it will not trigger unnecessary merges, albeit trivial. I have seen Visual Studio create files with mixed line endings.

Also some programs like bash (on linux) do require that .sh files are LF terminated.

To make sure this happens you can use gitattributes. It works on repository level no matter what the value of autcrlf is.

For example you can have .gitattributes like this: * text=auto

You can also be more specific per file type/extension if it did matter in your case.

Then autocrlf can convert line endings for Windows programs locally.

On a mixed C#/C++/Java/Ruby/R, Windows/Linux project this is working well. No issues so far.

0 votes
answered Jan 13, 2013 by artfunkel

I was only able to fix this by temporary deleting my repo's .gitattributes file (which defined * text=auto and *.c text).

I ran git status after deleting and the modifications were gone. They didn't return even after .gitattributes was put back in place.

0 votes
answered Jan 13, 2013 by rian-sanderson

I was having this problem on Windows but wasn't prepared to look into the ramifications of using config --global core.autocrlf false I also wasn't prepared to abandon other private branches and goodies in my stash and start with a fresh clone. I just need to get something done. Now.

This worked for me, on the idea that you let git rewrite your working directory completely:

git rm --cached -r .
git reset --hard

(Note that running just git reset --hard wasn't good enough nor was a plain rm on the files before the reset as are suggested in the comments to the original question)

0 votes
answered Jan 29, 2013 by richard-lalancette

This has been driving me crazy, especially that I couldn`t fix this without any of the solutions found online. Here is how I solved it. Can't take the credits here since this is the work of a colleague :)

Source of the problem: My initial installation of git was without auto line conversion on windows. This caused my initial commit to GLFW to be without the proper line ending.

Note: This is only a local solution. The next guy cloning the repo will still be stuck with this problem. A permanent solution can be found here: https://help.github.com/articles/dealing-with-line-endings/#re-normalizing-a-repository.

Setup: Xubuntu 12.04 Git repo with glfw project

Problem: Unable to reset glfw files. They always show as modified, regardless of what I tried.

Solved:

edit .gitattributes

Comment out the line:    # text=auto

Save the file

restore .gitattributes:   git checkout .gitattributes
0 votes
answered Jan 1, 2014 by nedvajz

I had also same symptoms but has been caused by different thing.

I was not able to:

git checkout app.js //did nothing
git rm app.js //did nothing
rm -rf app.js //did nothing

even on git rm --cached app.js it signs as deleted and in untracked files I could see app.js. But when I tried rm -rf app.js and peform git status again it still shows me the file in 'untracked'.

After couple of tries with colleague we found out, that it has been caused by Grunt!

As the Grunt has been turned on, and because app.js has been generated from couple of other js files we found out that after each operation with js files (also this app.js) grunt recreate app.js again.

0 votes
answered Jan 7, 2014 by moo-moo

I had a .bat file with the same problem (couldn't get rid it it in untracked files). git checkout -- didn't work, neither did any of the suggestions on this page. The only thing that worked for me was to do:

git stash save --keep-index

And then to delete the stash:

git stash drop
0 votes
answered Jan 13, 2014 by zebediah49

Another solution that may work for people, since none of the text options worked for me:

  1. Replace the content of .gitattributes with a single line: * binary. This tells git to treat every file as a binary file that it can't do anything with.
  2. Check that message for the offending files is gone; if it's not you can git checkout -- <files> to restore them to the repository version
  3. git checkout -- .gitattributes to restore the .gitattributes file to its initial state
  4. Check that the files are still not marked as changed.
0 votes
answered Jan 5, 2015 by fam-wired

Got the same issue twice! Both times when stash some changes I made and then tried to pop them back. Could'nt pop the changes since I've got lots of file that are changed -- but they are NOT! They are EXACTLY the same.

I now think I've tried all the above solutions without success. After trying the

git rm --cached -r .
git reset --hard

I now got almost all the files in my repository modified.

When diffing the file, it says I've deleted all the lines and then add them again.

Kind of disturbing. I will now avoid stashing in the future..

The only solution is to clone a new repository and start over. (Made it last time)

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