Topics ▾ Version 1.6.1 ▾ git-fast-export last updated in 2.16.2


git-fast-export - Git data exporter


git fast-export [options] | git fast-import


This program dumps the given revisions in a form suitable to be piped into git-fast-import.

You can use it as a human-readable bundle replacement (see git-bundle[1]), or as a kind of an interactive git-filter-branch.



Insert progress statements every <n> objects, to be shown by git-fast-import during import.


Specify how to handle signed tags. Since any transformation after the export can change the tag names (which can also happen when excluding revisions) the signatures will not match.

When asking to abort (which is the default), this program will die when encountering a signed tag. With strip, the tags will be made unsigned, with verbatim, they will be silently exported and with warn, they will be exported, but you will see a warning.


Perform move and/or copy detection, as described in the git-diff[1] manual page, and use it to generate rename and copy commands in the output dump.

Note that earlier versions of this command did not complain and produced incorrect results if you gave these options.


Dumps the internal marks table to <file> when complete. Marks are written one per line as :markid SHA-1. Only marks for revisions are dumped; marks for blobs are ignored. Backends can use this file to validate imports after they have been completed, or to save the marks table across incremental runs. As <file> is only opened and truncated at completion, the same path can also be safely given to \--import-marks.


Before processing any input, load the marks specified in <file>. The input file must exist, must be readable, and must use the same format as produced by \--export-marks.

Any commits that have already been marked will not be exported again. If the backend uses a similar \--import-marks file, this allows for incremental bidirectional exporting of the repository by keeping the marks the same across runs.


Some old repositories have tags without a tagger. The fast-import protocol was pretty strict about that, and did not allow that. So fake a tagger to be able to fast-import the output.


$ git fast-export --all | (cd /empty/repository && git fast-import)

This will export the whole repository and import it into the existing empty repository. Except for reencoding commits that are not in UTF-8, it would be a one-to-one mirror.

$ git fast-export master~5..master |
	sed "s|refs/heads/master|refs/heads/other|" |
	git fast-import

This makes a new branch called other from master~5..master (i.e. if master has linear history, it will take the last 5 commits).

Note that this assumes that none of the blobs and commit messages referenced by that revision range contains the string refs/heads/master.


Since git-fast-import cannot tag trees, you will not be able to export the linux-2.6.git repository completely, as it contains a tag referencing a tree instead of a commit.


Written by Johannes E. Schindelin <>.


Documentation by Johannes E. Schindelin <>.


Part of the git[1] suite