Keep gh-pages and master in sync with one line of code

If you publish projects to Github, then you probably are using a gh-pages branch to create a nice home for your project with a demo and some documentation (e.g. like this). Read all about Github Pages at pages.github.com

A common pattern is to keep the gh-pages and master branches in sync with each other — whatever code is in master is the same as your project page (gh-pages). You can read about different ways to do this on Oli Studholme’s excellent article GitHub Pages Workflow and deleting git’s master branch.

I myself favor Lea Verou’s simple approach detailed here. Something along the lines of this:

git add -A .
git commit -m 'Your commit message'
git push origin gh-pages
git checkout master
git rebase gh-pages
git push origin master
git checkout gh-pages

How about we do that in one line? The secret to this will be setting up a Git Alias in our .gitconfig file. I have written about Git Aliases before (see here). If you aren’t already using them to speed up your workflow, then I encourage you to start now. Read about Git Aliases at Git How To

Open up your .gitconfig file (located in your $HOME directory). We will be adding two aliases. The first will be an alias to commit all changes to the current branch (aacm = add all . -git commit –m). Next will be an alias to push the commit to master and then to gh-pages (pomg = push origin master and gh-pages)).

[alias]
aacm = !git add -A . && git commit -m
pomg = !git push origin gh-pages && git checkout master && git pull origin master && git rebase gh-pages && git push origin master && git checkout gh-pages

Now, when you are on the master branch and you want to sync it to master, simply run:

git pomg

Or, you can combine a commit with the push and sync by running:

git aacm 'Your commit message' && git pomg

Hope that helps your workflows! For more tips on Git Aliases, check out these resources: