What Is Meant by "Short-Lived" Branches in Git?

In Git, "Short-lived" branches are intended to exist for a short period of time and are typically used for a specific purpose, such as developing a new feature or fixing a bug. Once the task or purpose of the branch is complete, it is typically merged into a long-lived, such as "master" or "develop", and then deleted.

Short-lived branches serve as temporary branches that are merged back into the long-lived branch once the work on that branch is complete.

For example, feature branches are short-lived branches that are typically created from a long-lived branch. Creating these short-lived feature branches provide a lot of benefits, such as the following:

  • They allow multiple developers to work on different features simultaneously, without conflicting with each other's work or breaking the stable version of the code;
  • By working on separate branches, developers can test and validate their changes independently, without affecting the long-lived branch until their changes are ready to be merged;
  • They help to isolate changes, make code reviews more manageable, and reduce the risk of conflicts when merging changes back into the long-lived branch.

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