The git shortlog command is a convenient tool that summarizes the output of the git log command, providing a more condensed and readable summary of commit history. It’s particularly useful for quickly understanding the contributions of different authors to a Git repository. Here’s a more detailed explanation of how git shortlog works:
- Summarizing Commit History: The primary purpose of git shortlog is to provide a concise summary of commit history, organized by author. It groups commits by author and displays the number of commits made by each author.
- Contributor Summary: git shortlog is often used to generate a list of contributors along with the number of commits they’ve made to the repository. This can be helpful for acknowledging and recognizing contributors’ efforts.
- Readable Format: The output of git shortlog is designed to be more readable than the raw git log output. It presents the summary in a format that’s easy to scan and understand.
- Options for Formatting: git shortlog offers various formatting options to customize the output according to your preferences. You can control how the author names are displayed and adjust the level of detail in the summary.
- Default Output: By default, git shortlog displays a list of authors along with the number of commits they’ve made, formatted as “Author: Number of Commits”.
- Include Commit Messages: You can use the -s or –summary option to include the commit messages in the summary. This provides additional context for each author’s contributions.
- Filtering by Author: You can use the git shortlog command with an author’s name to generate a summary for that specific author’s contributions.
- Sorting Order: The summary is presented in alphabetical order by default. You can use the -n or –numbered option to sort the authors by the number of commits they’ve made, from most to least.
- Customizing Author Names: Git uses the author’s name and email from the commit metadata. If there’s a need to customize how author names are displayed in the summary, you can achieve this through the use of –format and other formatting options.
- Visualization of Contributions: git shortlog provides a quick way to visualize the distribution of commits across different authors, helping you understand the collaborative aspects of a project.
“git shortlog” Command Examples
1. View a summary of all the commits made, grouped alphabetically by author name:
# git shortlog
2. View a summary of all the commits made, sorted by the number of commits made:
# git shortlog -n
3. View a summary of all the commits made, grouped by the committer identities (name and email):
# git shortlog -c
4. View a summary of the last 5 commits (i.e. specify a revision range):
# git shortlog HEAD~5..HEAD
5. View all users, emails and the number of commits in the current branch:
# git shortlog -sne
6. View all users, emails and the number of commits in all branches:
# git shortlog -sne --all
In summary, git shortlog is a helpful command for summarizing commit history and understanding the contributions of various authors in a Git repository. Its output is concise and easy to read, making it a useful tool for acknowledging contributors and getting an overview of the development process.