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GIT-BISECT(1)			  Git Manual			 GIT-BISECT(1)

NAME
       git-bisect - Use	binary search to find the commit that introduced a bug

SYNOPSIS
       git bisect <subcommand> <options>

DESCRIPTION
       The command takes various subcommands, and different options depending
       on the subcommand:

	   git bisect start [--term-{old,good}=<term> --term-{new,bad}=<term>]
			    [--no-checkout] [<bad> [<good>...]]	[--] [<paths>...]
	   git bisect (bad|new|<term-new>) [<rev>]
	   git bisect (good|old|<term-old>) [<rev>...]
	   git bisect terms [--term-good | --term-bad]
	   git bisect skip [(<rev>|<range>)...]
	   git bisect reset [<commit>]
	   git bisect visualize
	   git bisect replay <logfile>
	   git bisect log
	   git bisect run <cmd>...
	   git bisect help

       This command uses a binary search algorithm to find which commit	in
       your project's history introduced a bug.	You use	it by first telling it
       a "bad" commit that is known to contain the bug,	and a "good" commit
       that is known to	be before the bug was introduced. Then git bisect
       picks a commit between those two	endpoints and asks you whether the
       selected	commit is "good" or "bad". It continues	narrowing down the
       range until it finds the	exact commit that introduced the change.

       In fact,	git bisect can be used to find the commit that changed any
       property	of your	project; e.g., the commit that fixed a bug, or the
       commit that caused a benchmark's	performance to improve.	To support
       this more general usage,	the terms "old"	and "new" can be used in place
       of "good" and "bad", or you can choose your own terms. See section
       "Alternate terms" below for more	information.

   Basic bisect	commands: start, bad, good
       As an example, suppose you are trying to	find the commit	that broke a
       feature that was	known to work in version v2.6.13-rc2 of	your project.
       You start a bisect session as follows:

	   $ git bisect	start
	   $ git bisect	bad		    # Current version is bad
	   $ git bisect	good v2.6.13-rc2    # v2.6.13-rc2 is known to be good

       Once you	have specified at least	one bad	and one	good commit, git
       bisect selects a	commit in the middle of	that range of history, checks
       it out, and outputs something similar to	the following:

	   Bisecting: 675 revisions left to test after this (roughly 10	steps)

       You should now compile the checked-out version and test it. If that
       version works correctly,	type

	   $ git bisect	good

       If that version is broken, type

	   $ git bisect	bad

       Then git	bisect will respond with something like

	   Bisecting: 337 revisions left to test after this (roughly 9 steps)

       Keep repeating the process: compile the tree, test it, and depending on
       whether it is good or bad run git bisect	good or	git bisect bad to ask
       for the next commit that	needs testing.

       Eventually there	will be	no more	revisions left to inspect, and the
       command will print out a	description of the first bad commit. The
       reference refs/bisect/bad will be left pointing at that commit.

   Bisect reset
       After a bisect session, to clean	up the bisection state and return to
       the original HEAD, issue	the following command:

	   $ git bisect	reset

       By default, this	will return your tree to the commit that was checked
       out before git bisect start. (A new git bisect start will also do that,
       as it cleans up the old bisection state.)

       With an optional	argument, you can return to a different	commit
       instead:

	   $ git bisect	reset <commit>

       For example, git	bisect reset bisect/bad	will check out the first bad
       revision, while git bisect reset	HEAD will leave	you on the current
       bisection commit	and avoid switching commits at all.

   Alternate terms
       Sometimes you are not looking for the commit that introduced a
       breakage, but rather for	a commit that caused a change between some
       other "old" state and "new" state. For example, you might be looking
       for the commit that introduced a	particular fix.	Or you might be
       looking for the first commit in which the source-code filenames were
       finally all converted to	your company's naming standard.	Or whatever.

       In such cases it	can be very confusing to use the terms "good" and
       "bad" to	refer to "the state before the change" and "the	state after
       the change". So instead,	you can	use the	terms "old" and	"new",
       respectively, in	place of "good"	and "bad". (But	note that you cannot
       mix "good" and "bad" with "old" and "new" in a single session.)

       In this more general usage, you provide git bisect with a "new" commit
       that has	some property and an "old" commit that doesn't have that
       property. Each time git bisect checks out a commit, you test if that
       commit has the property.	If it does, mark the commit as "new";
       otherwise, mark it as "old". When the bisection is done,	git bisect
       will report which commit	introduced the property.

       To use "old" and	"new" instead of "good"	and bad, you must run git
       bisect start without commits as argument	and then run the following
       commands	to add the commits:

	   git bisect old [<rev>]

       to indicate that	a commit was before the	sought change, or

	   git bisect new [<rev>...]

       to indicate that	it was after.

       To get a	reminder of the	currently used terms, use

	   git bisect terms

       You can get just	the old	(respectively new) term	with git bisect	term
       --term-old or git bisect	term --term-good.

       If you would like to use	your own terms instead of "bad"/"good" or
       "new"/"old", you	can choose any names you like (except existing bisect
       subcommands like	reset, start, ...) by starting the bisection using

	   git bisect start --term-old <term-old> --term-new <term-new>

       For example, if you are looking for a commit that introduced a
       performance regression, you might use

	   git bisect start --term-old fast --term-new slow

       Or if you are looking for the commit that fixed a bug, you might	use

	   git bisect start --term-new fixed --term-old	broken

       Then, use git bisect <term-old> and git bisect <term-new> instead of
       git bisect good and git bisect bad to mark commits.

   Bisect visualize
       To see the currently remaining suspects in gitk,	issue the following
       command during the bisection process:

	   $ git bisect	visualize

       view may	also be	used as	a synonym for visualize.

       If the DISPLAY environment variable is not set, git log is used
       instead.	You can	also give command-line options such as -p and --stat.

	   $ git bisect	view --stat

   Bisect log and bisect replay
       After having marked revisions as	good or	bad, issue the following
       command to show what has	been done so far:

	   $ git bisect	log

       If you discover that you	made a mistake in specifying the status	of a
       revision, you can save the output of this command to a file, edit it to
       remove the incorrect entries, and then issue the	following commands to
       return to a corrected state:

	   $ git bisect	reset
	   $ git bisect	replay that-file

   Avoiding testing a commit
       If, in the middle of a bisect session, you know that the	suggested
       revision	is not a good one to test (e.g.	it fails to build and you know
       that the	failure	does not have anything to do with the bug you are
       chasing), you can manually select a nearby commit and test that one
       instead.

       For example:

	   $ git bisect	good/bad		   # previous round was	good or	bad.
	   Bisecting: 337 revisions left to test after this (roughly 9 steps)
	   $ git bisect	visualize		   # oops, that	is uninteresting.
	   $ git reset --hard HEAD~3		   # try 3 revisions before what
						   # was suggested

       Then compile and	test the chosen	revision, and afterwards mark the
       revision	as good	or bad in the usual manner.

   Bisect skip
       Instead of choosing a nearby commit by yourself,	you can	ask Git	to do
       it for you by issuing the command:

	   $ git bisect	skip		     # Current version cannot be tested

       However,	if you skip a commit adjacent to the one you are looking for,
       Git will	be unable to tell exactly which	of those commits was the first
       bad one.

       You can also skip a range of commits, instead of	just one commit, using
       range notation. For example:

	   $ git bisect	skip v2.5..v2.6

       This tells the bisect process that no commit after v2.5,	up to and
       including v2.6, should be tested.

       Note that if you	also want to skip the first commit of the range	you
       would issue the command:

	   $ git bisect	skip v2.5 v2.5..v2.6

       This tells the bisect process that the commits between v2.5 and v2.6
       (inclusive) should be skipped.

   Cutting down	bisection by giving more parameters to bisect start
       You can further cut down	the number of trials, if you know what part of
       the tree	is involved in the problem you are tracking down, by
       specifying path parameters when issuing the bisect start	command:

	   $ git bisect	start -- arch/i386 include/asm-i386

       If you know beforehand more than	one good commit, you can narrow	the
       bisect space down by specifying all of the good commits immediately
       after the bad commit when issuing the bisect start command:

	   $ git bisect	start v2.6.20-rc6 v2.6.20-rc4 v2.6.20-rc1 --
			      #	v2.6.20-rc6 is bad
			      #	v2.6.20-rc4 and	v2.6.20-rc1 are	good

   Bisect run
       If you have a script that can tell if the current source	code is	good
       or bad, you can bisect by issuing the command:

	   $ git bisect	run my_script arguments

       Note that the script (my_script in the above example) should exit with
       code 0 if the current source code is good/old, and exit with a code
       between 1 and 127 (inclusive), except 125, if the current source	code
       is bad/new.

       Any other exit code will	abort the bisect process. It should be noted
       that a program that terminates via exit(-1) leaves $? = 255, (see the
       exit(3) manual page), as	the value is chopped with & 0377.

       The special exit	code 125 should	be used	when the current source	code
       cannot be tested. If the	script exits with this code, the current
       revision	will be	skipped	(see git bisect	skip above). 125 was chosen as
       the highest sensible value to use for this purpose, because 126 and 127
       are used	by POSIX shells	to signal specific error status	(127 is	for
       command not found, 126 is for command found but not executable--these
       details do not matter, as they are normal errors	in the script, as far
       as bisect run is	concerned).

       You may often find that during a	bisect session you want	to have
       temporary modifications (e.g. s/#define DEBUG 0/#define DEBUG 1/	in a
       header file, or "revision that does not have this commit	needs this
       patch applied to	work around another problem this bisection is not
       interested in") applied to the revision being tested.

       To cope with such a situation, after the	inner git bisect finds the
       next revision to	test, the script can apply the patch before compiling,
       run the real test, and afterwards decide	if the revision	(possibly with
       the needed patch) passed	the test and then rewind the tree to the
       pristine	state. Finally the script should exit with the status of the
       real test to let	the git	bisect run command loop	determine the eventual
       outcome of the bisect session.

OPTIONS
       --no-checkout
	   Do not checkout the new working tree	at each	iteration of the
	   bisection process. Instead just update a special reference named
	   BISECT_HEAD to make it point	to the commit that should be tested.

	   This	option may be useful when the test you would perform in	each
	   step	does not require a checked out tree.

	   If the repository is	bare, --no-checkout is assumed.

EXAMPLES
       o   Automatically bisect	a broken build between v1.2 and	HEAD:

	       $ git bisect start HEAD v1.2 --	    # HEAD is bad, v1.2	is good
	       $ git bisect run	make		    # "make" builds the	app
	       $ git bisect reset		    # quit the bisect session

       o   Automatically bisect	a test failure between origin and HEAD:

	       $ git bisect start HEAD origin --    # HEAD is bad, origin is good
	       $ git bisect run	make test	    # "make test" builds and tests
	       $ git bisect reset		    # quit the bisect session

       o   Automatically bisect	a broken test case:

	       $ cat ~/test.sh
	       #!/bin/sh
	       make || exit 125			    # this skips broken	builds
	       ~/check_test_case.sh		    # does the test case pass?
	       $ git bisect start HEAD HEAD~10 --   # culprit is among the last	10
	       $ git bisect run	~/test.sh
	       $ git bisect reset		    # quit the bisect session

	   Here	we use a test.sh custom	script.	In this	script,	if make	fails,
	   we skip the current commit.	check_test_case.sh should exit 0 if
	   the test case passes, and exit 1 otherwise.

	   It is safer if both test.sh and check_test_case.sh are outside the
	   repository to prevent interactions between the bisect, make and
	   test	processes and the scripts.

       o   Automatically bisect	with temporary modifications (hot-fix):

	       $ cat ~/test.sh
	       #!/bin/sh

	       # tweak the working tree	by merging the hot-fix branch
	       # and then attempt a build
	       if      git merge --no-commit hot-fix &&
		       make
	       then
		       # run project specific test and report its status
		       ~/check_test_case.sh
		       status=$?
	       else
		       # tell the caller this is untestable
		       status=125
	       fi

	       # undo the tweak	to allow clean flipping	to the next commit
	       git reset --hard

	       # return	control
	       exit $status

	   This	applies	modifications from a hot-fix branch before each	test
	   run,	e.g. in	case your build	or test	environment changed so that
	   older revisions may need a fix which	newer ones have	already. (Make
	   sure	the hot-fix branch is based off	a commit which is contained in
	   all revisions which you are bisecting, so that the merge does not
	   pull	in too much, or	use git	cherry-pick instead of git merge.)

       o   Automatically bisect	a broken test case:

	       $ git bisect start HEAD HEAD~10 --   # culprit is among the last	10
	       $ git bisect run	sh -c "make || exit 125; ~/check_test_case.sh"
	       $ git bisect reset		    # quit the bisect session

	   This	shows that you can do without a	run script if you write	the
	   test	on a single line.

       o   Locate a good region	of the object graph in a damaged repository

	       $ git bisect start HEAD <known-good-commit> [ <boundary-commit> ... ] --no-checkout
	       $ git bisect run	sh -c '
		       GOOD=$(git for-each-ref "--format=%(objectname)"	refs/bisect/good-*) &&
		       git rev-list --objects BISECT_HEAD --not	$GOOD >tmp.$$ &&
		       git pack-objects	--stdout >/dev/null <tmp.$$
		       rc=$?
		       rm -f tmp.$$
		       test $rc	= 0'

	       $ git bisect reset		    # quit the bisect session

	   In this case, when git bisect run finishes, bisect/bad will refer
	   to a	commit that has	at least one parent whose reachable graph is
	   fully traversable in	the sense required by git pack objects.

       o   Look	for a fix instead of a regression in the code

	       $ git bisect start
	       $ git bisect new	HEAD	# current commit is marked as new
	       $ git bisect old	HEAD~10	# the tenth commit from	now is marked as old

	   or:

	   $ git bisect	start --term-old broken	--term-new fixed
	   $ git bisect	fixed
	   $ git bisect	broken HEAD~10

   Getting help
       Use git bisect to get a short usage description,	and git	bisect help or
       git bisect -h to	get a long usage description.

SEE ALSO
       Fighting	regressions with git bisect[1],	git-blame(1).

GIT
       Part of the git(1) suite

NOTES
	1. Fighting regressions	with git bisect
	   git-htmldocs/git-bisect-lk2009.html

Git 2.13.2			  06/24/2017			 GIT-BISECT(1)

NAME | SYNOPSIS | DESCRIPTION | OPTIONS | EXAMPLES | SEE ALSO | GIT | NOTES

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